The Chrome Horn - Champ Trail with Phil Smith


July 29, 2014

  The final event of the three race Tri-Track series was a 100 lapper at the Seekonk Speedway on Wednesday, July 23. This race paid $10,000 to win and was supplemented by a $10,000 point fund. Tommy Barrett Jr saved the best for last as he snookered Todd Annarummo on lap 86 and walked off with the $10 grand as a capacity crowd looked on. Annarummo faded in the final laps and wound up fourth. Jon McKennedy finished second with Matt Hirschman, third. Richard Savory rounded out the top five.

  Open Wheeled Wednesday, co promoted by the Seekonk Speedway, the Racing Guys headed by Dick Williams and Jim Schaefer, drew a huge field of 45 Modifieds. Four heats and two consolations were required to set the field. Sixth through tenth were Ryan Preece, Vinnie Annarummo, Rowan Pennink, Paul Newcomb and Anthony Nocella. There were 17 cars on the lead lap at the finish.

  At the Stafford Speedway the Inaugural NAPA Auto Parts SK 5k, which paid the winner $5,000 out of a purse of over $27,000 was the main event. Stafford Speedway held an online vote prior to the race with fans able to vote on the qualifying procedure, the number of laps for the feature, the tire rule, and how the lineup would be handicapped. The qualifying, tire rule, and handicapping procedures were decided by the fan vote prior to the race but the lap number remained a mystery to everyone. A weighted draw was held just prior to the start of the race with the top-3 fan choices of 76, 80, and 100 laps in a bucker. The 100-lap chip was drawn, making the race 100-laps long. After a 2014 season that has seen more downs than ups for Huntingdon Valley, PA driver Rowan Pennink, he used a strong move in turns 3+4 to take the lead from Ryan Preece as they were heading towards the white flag and took home the $5,000 winner’s check.

  Pennink was all but on Ryan Preece’s back bumper when he made a pass for the lead in turns 3+4. The two cars came to the white flag side by side but as they went into turn 1, Preece spun and did a quick 360 turn and kept going, but it was all Pennink at the front and he took the checkered flag and the $5,000 payday that came with it. Ted Christopher finished second, with Frank Ruocco, Keith Rocco, and Glen Reen rounding out the top-5.

  In other feature action during the night, Jay Stuart recorded his second consecutive Late Model feature victory, Dylan Menditto won the SK Light feature, David Arute took his first Ltd. Late Model checkered flag of the 2014, Frank L’Etoile, Jr. picked up his first win of the 2014 season in the DARE Stock feature, and Mike Christopher, Jr. picked up his first Stafford Speedway win of the year in the Legend Cars feature.

  The Sunoco Modifieds reclaim center stage at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park (TSMP) for their 20/20 Sprint event on Whelen Night, this coming Wednesday, July 30th.

  The unique format will feature a three segment race for the Sunoco Modifieds, with the lowest overall point total taking the victory. The first segment will be lined up from the results of the qualifiers, and will be 20 laps in distance. The second segment will be a complete inversion of lead lap cars setting the field, and will also consist of 20 laps. The third and final segment will be lined up by fastest lap times from the first segment, but will only be a 10 lap sprint for the win. “This format was used for the Late Models, and was a huge success,” states TSMP General Manager, Josh Vanada.

  Ryan Preece enters the event as the point leader, fresh off a pair of victories May 29th. The Berlin, CT pilot placed third at the Icebreaker, and has since notched two victories. Preece holds a two point lead over Keith Rocco. Rocco has held every position on the podium in 2014 at TSMP, including a victory at the Icebreaker in April, keeping him on Preece’s back bumper in the standings. Woody Pitkat looks to close the gap between himself and Preece, sitting just 8 points back entering the July 30th event. Danny Cates and Todd Ceravolo sit fourth and fifth respectively.

  In NASCAR Whelen All-American Series action at the Waterford Speedbowl the annual Nostalgia Night hit the track Saturday with NASCAR Whelen All-American Series racing joined by vintage displays and motorsports action, plus racing by the Northeastern Midget Association. Taking NASCAR wins was Keith Rocco, winner of both the special Charlie Mitchell Memorial SK Modified® feature plus Valenti Auto Mall Late Model race, tying yet another track record in the process. Rocco’s SK Modified® triumph marked his 62nd in the division at the Speedbowl, tying him atop the division’s all-time win list with Dennis Gada, the only seven-time champion in track history. Rocco's first victory at the shoreline oval was in 2008. Rocco began the night a winner in the Valenti Auto Mall Late Model ranks, winning for the second consecutive week and eighth time of the year in that division.

  In other Speedbowl action, Al Stone III came away with a hard- nosed win in the Street Stocks, while Wayne Burroughs Jr. was victorious for the first time this season in the Mini Stocks. In NEMA action, the Shane Hammond Memorial race was won by Seth Carlson and the NEMA Lites feature went to To win the SK Modified event, Rocco used a stellar move on another of the division’s all-time best, Ted Christopher. Christopher inherited the lead after leaders Ed Puleo and Tyler Chadwick tangled battling for the lead on lap-14. Christopher and Rocco, who were third and fourth on the track, narrowly avoided the melee and made up the front row for the ensuing restart.

  In Modified racing in the Southland, NASCAR Officials penalized Burt Myers and Tim Brown by docking them 100 points in the championship point standings. “We believe that these penalties will send a message that this is something we can not tolerate,” said NASCAR Chief Steward John Horton, about the crashing that occurred while the caution was displayed during the Modified feature at the Bowman Gray Stadium run on July 19.

  The deduction dropped Brown from the points lead down to fourth, and Myers fell from second down to fifth in the points standings. With nine races left in the season, including a double-points race during the season finale, Brown and Myers had both indicated that they would sit out the rest of the season at the Winston-Salem, NC track. Myers relented and was in the field this past week. Word has it that Tommy Barrett Jr and Ryan Preece will take on the Good Ole Boys at the stadium this week.

  Jason Myers and Dean Ward, were the winners of twin 50-lap races for the featured Modified Division. Jason Myers led all the way in a caution-free first race on a relatively calm night. Ward fended off a few challenges in the second race on his way to a second victory in two weeks. Tempers were cool for the most part after a heated car-bashing clash last weekend that resulted in penalties for multi-time champions Tim Brown and Burt Myers.

  Tom Rogers Jr was the Richie Evans, Charlie Jarzombek, Tom Baldwin Memorial Modified winner at the Riverhead Raceway on Long Island. Ron Silk finished second with Ryan Preece, third.

  On the speedway stock market scene last week two of the three speedway stocks were down for the week. Dover Entertainment was up 0.12 to 2.92 while Speedway Motorsports dropped 0.28 to 17.43 and the International Speedway Corporation dropped 1.12 to 31.36. NASCAR cup sponsor Sprint dropped 0.18 to 7.72 while NASCAR fuel supplier Sunoco (Energy Transfer) went up 2.25 to 59.04 and NASCAR tire supplier Goodyear went up 0.33 to 28.22. Two of the three auto makers were down for the week. Toyota went up 0.73 to 119.63 while Ford dropped 0.15 to 17.62 and General Motors dropped 2.34 to 35.07. In the home improvement sector, Home Depot went up 0.95 to 81.03 while Lowes dropped 0.11 to 47.70. In the area of big team sponsorship Target Department Stores went up 0.38 to 60.39 while Dupont dropped 0.62 to 64.93, Coca-Cola dropped 1.66 to 70.88, Aarona Rentals dropped 0.92 to 28.66 and FedEx dropped 2.11 to 150.86.

On the tube this week:

Wednesday, July 30

5:00 PM, NASCAR America, NBC Sports Network
5:00 PM, NASCAR Race Hub, FOX Sports 1
6:30 PM, NASCAR Race Hub, FOX Sports 2

Thursday, July 31
8:30 AM, Top 5 Reasons You Can't Blame... NASCAR Fans for Hating Jeff Gordon, ESPN Classic
5:00 PM, NASCAR America, NBCSN
5:00 PM, NASCAR Race Hub, FS1
6:30 PM, NASCAR Race Hub, FS2

Friday, August 1
11:00 AM, NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pocono practice, FS1
1:30 PM, Empty Cup - Quest for the 1992 NASCAR Championship, FS2
3:30 PM, NSCS Pocono qualifying, FS1
5:00 PM, NASCAR America, NBCSN
6:30 PM, NSCS Pocono practice re-air, FS1
7:30 PM, NASCAR Race Hub Special, FS1
8:30 PM, NSCS Pocono qualifying re-air, FS1

Saturday, August 2
2:30 AM, NASCAR's The List - Greatest Finishes, NBCSN
3:00 AM, NSCS Pocono practice re-air, FS1
4:30 AM, NSCS Pocono qualifying re-air, FS1
9:00 AM, NSCS Pocono practice, ESPN 2
10:00 AM, NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Pocono qualifying, FS1
11:30 AM, NSCS Pocono final practice, ESPN2
1:00 PM, NCWTS Pocono race, FS1
2:30 PM, NASCAR Live, FS1
4:30 PM, NASCAR Nationwide Series Iowa qualifying, ESPN
7:30 PM, NASCAR Countdown, ESPN
8:00 PM, NNS Iowa race, ESPN

Sunday, August 3
4:30 AM, NCWTS Pocono race re-air, FS1
10:00 AM, NASCAR RaceDay, FS1
12:00 PM, NASCAR Countdown, ESPN
1:00 PM, NSCS Pocono race, ESPN
7:00 PM, NASCAR Victory Lane, FS1

Monday, August 4
3:30 AM, NSCS Pocono race re-air, ESPN2
10:00 PM, NCWTS Pocono race re-air, FS1

   That’s about it for this week from 11 Gardner Drive, Westerly, and R.I.02891. Ring my chimes at 401-596-5467. E-mail:

Phil Smith has been a columnist for Speedway Scene and various
other publications for over 3 decades.

SourcePhil Smith / Champ Trail
Posted: July 29, 2014

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