NOCELLA SCORES VALENTI MODIFIED RACING SERIES VICTORY
IN 4th ANNUAL VMRS 80 AT STAFFORD SPEEDWAY
Valenti Modified Racing Series made its first of two
visits during the 2017 season to Stafford Motor
Speedway for the 4th Annual VMRS 80. Taking the
checkered flag was Anthony Nocella, his first career
Stafford VMRS victory.
Dave Etheridge took the early lead at the drop of
the green flag with Rowan Pennink, Keith Rocco,
Woody Pitkat, and Donnie Lashua lined up behind him.
Rocco took to the outside groove on lap-6 and he
took second from Pennink and slotted himself in
second right behind Etheridge.
Rocco made a move around Etheridge on lap-12 to move
to the lead with Pennink and Pitkat lined up right
behind them in a 4-car train that was starting to
pull away from the rest of the field. Lashua was
fifth with Dylan Kopec in sixth, Anthony Nocella in
seventh, Richard Savary eighth, Mike Willis ninth,
and Les Hinckley tenth.
The action was slowed with 22 laps complete as Geoff
Gernhard spun coming out of turn 2. Rocco was the
leader for the restart with Etheridge, Pennink,
Pitkat, Lashua, and Nocella lined up behind him.
Rocco took the lead back under green with Pennink
right on his back bumper. Etheridge was third in
line with Pitkat fourth and Nocella in fifth as
Lashua fell back a spot to sixth. This was the order
when the caution came out with 30 laps complete for
a spin in the middle of turns 3+4 by Colby Fournier.
Rocco took the lead back under green with Pennink in
second. Pitkat moved up a spot to third with
Etheridge back to fourth and Nocella was fifth. Jeff
Rocco nearly spun in the middle of turns 3+4 to
bring the caution out with 34 laps complete. Under
the caution period, Etheridge brought his car to pit
road from fourth place and he rejoined at the rear
of the field for the restart.
Rocco took the lead on the restart and he held it
until lap-41 when Pennink moved to the lead. Pitkat
was third with Savary in fourth and Nocella was in
fifth. Carl Medieros, Jr. spun coming out of turn 2
to bring the caution out with 47 laps complete.
Pennink was the leader back under green with Rocco
holding on to second. Savary ws third with Pitkat
fourth and Nocella in fifth. Etheridge and Dylan
Kopec spun on the frontstretch along with Roy
Seidell to bring the caution out with 50-laps
Rocco went around Pennink on the restart to move
back to the lead. One lap later, Pennink came back
strong to the inside of Rocco to take over the lead.
Pitkat was third with Nocella in fourth and Hinckley
was up to fifth. Medieros and Seidell spun in turn 4
to bring the caution out with 52 laps complete.
Pennink resumed the lead on the restart with Rocco
in hot pursuit from second. Nocella was now up to
third with Pitkat in fourth and Anthony Flannery was
up to fifth. Nocella was able to take second from
Rocco with a power move coming out of turn 4 on
lap-56 as Pennink continued to lead.
With 20 laps to go, Pennink was starting to stretch
out his lead over Nocella, Rocco, Pitkat, and
Savary. Jonny Kay spun with 63 laps complete to
bring the caution out and bring the field back to
Pennink took the lead back under green with Nocella
right behind him in second. Pitkat was third with
Rocco in fourth and Savary in fifth. Pennink was
starting to stretch out his lead once again but the
caution erased his lead with 71 laps complete as
Fournier spun in turn 4.
On the restart Gernhard and Jeff Gallup both spun in
turn 2 to bring the caution right back out. Under
the caution, Rocco’s car dropped off the pace and
slowed to a crawl at the entrance of pit road.
Pennink took the lead with Nocella, Savary, Pitkat,
and Hinckley lined up behind him. Matt Mead brought
the yellow out with 74 laps complete with a trip
through the frontstretch grass.
The restart saw Gerhard get into the turn 2 wall
while Lashua and Flannery spin at the end of the
backstretch to bring the caution back out. The race
was red flagged and when the race retuned to
caution, Pennink’s car wouldn’t start back up and
Savary came to pit road out of gas, handing the race
lead over to Nocella with Pitkat, Willis, Hinckley,
Ronnie Williams, and Charlie Pasteryak making up the
Nocella powered into the lead with Pitkat in second
on the restart. Willis was third with Pasteryak
fourth and Hinckley in fifth. Nocella led Pitkat to
the checkered flag to pick up his first win at
Stafford. Willis finished third with Pasteryak and
Williams rounding out the top-5.
VMRS 80 (80)
1) Anthony Nocella, Woburn, MA
2) Woody Pitkat, Stafford Springs
3) Mike Willis, Grantham, NH
4) Charlie Pasteryak, Lisbon
5) Ronnie Williams, Ellington
6) Les Hinckley, Windsor Locks
7) Colbey Fournier, Berkley, MA
8) Rob Richardi, Jr., Taunton, MA
9) Matt Mead, Richmond, NH
10) Jonny Kay, Deerfield Beach, FL
11) Jeff Gallup, Feeding Hills, MA
12) Roy Seidell, Jr., Easthampton, MA
13) Rowan Pennink, Huntingdon Valley, PA
14) Richard Savary, Canton, MA
15) Donnie Lashua, Canaan, NH
16) Anthony Flannery, Easthampton
17) Geoff Gernhard, Bozrah
18) Keith Rocco, Berlin
19) Jeff Rocco, Southington
20) Kyle James, Ashaway, RI
21) Carl Medieros, Jr., Westport, MA
22) Sam Rameau, Westminster, MA
23) Dave Etheridge, Portland
24) Dylan Kopec, Palmer, MA
25) George Sherman, Framingham, MA
Scott Running /
May 19, 2017