New Beginning for Lowinski-Loh

John Lowinski-Loh, Jr. of Milford, MA will make his first laps at Daytona International Speedway Friday during a two-day for the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards. Lowinski-Loh primary goal is to get a superspeedway license, to be able to race at tracks over two miles, including the season opener at Daytona in February.

There will be a dual-purpose for rookie drivers at the 2.5 mile tri-oval: learning the track and the draft. Drafting takes on additional importance as ARCA will use group qualifying similar to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. The team is already working on getting a pack of cars together at the test.

“It’s going to be crucial … we’re going to get comfortable with the car on the racetrack and then everyone is going to go into a group session and try the drafting for qualifying because we’re going to try to make our car really, really good, make sure it pulls up good to other cars. And make sure everything’s key for that because starting at the back of the field at Daytona never ends up usually good for anybody.”

The team will use a current car with a Roush Fenway “D” engine at the test. Lowinski-Loh said only 10 teams have an Ilmor engine, a new engine package available for 2015. “They do say it’s a big difference in the motor.” The team plans to use one in the January test with either Lowinski-Loh or his teammate driving.

Another change coming to ARCA is a composite body that will also be used in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series. Team BCR does not have one of the bodies yet, but is waiting to see what the competition does. Between 800-1,000 pounds will need to be moved higher in the racecar, and teams generally want to have the weight lower.

“If everyone had to change, we obviously would, but we think there might be an advantage to the old style with the weight lower.”

One factor is a lack of information on the car. Lowinski-Loh said no teams have put the new body through a wind tunnel test yet. While the team may use the new body on a newer car for Talladega, they still needsto find how the new engine and body packages change the car.

“If we see other teams do it and … they put up better numbers, it may be something to go to, even though the weight’s higher because at Daytona it’s all draft.”

Lowinski-Loh currently has two associate sponsors from Team BCR, but hopes to add more soon. “We are in contact with actually four different full-time primary sponsors.” The team is working to finalize sponsorship next month.

 

Team BCR of Mooresville, NC is owned by Howard and Paula Bixman.  The team won four races with Grant Enfinger at Daytona, Mobile, Salem, and Elko. Enfinger also led the points before leaving the team midseason. Justin Allison won his first race at Pocono in August.

Lowinski-Loh finished 11th in Thompson points this season. He also raced his No. 20 Late Model at Seekonk and Waterford.

Lowinski-Loh moved to the Late Models for 2013 at Thompson and won in only his fifth start. He finished third in points with six top fives in nine races.  Lowinski-Loh claimed Rookie of the Year honors at the annual banquet.

Lowinski-Loh won the 2012 Thompson Modified championship on the strength of nine victories. He won the season finale on World Series weekend as well.

Sources: Nicholas Teto/YankeeRacer.com

Barrett to Test ARCA Car at Daytona

Tommy Barrett, Jr. of Millis, MA will test Friday and Saturday at Daytona International Speedway. Barrett will drive for Carter 2 Motorsports during the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards test. Barrett is thankful his NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour car owner Chris Our contacted Roger Carter to setup the deal. Barrett and Our “decided that it would be a good opportunity, even if we don’t race, but just to get approved and just have some fun,” Barrett said.

Daytona’s 2.5 mile tri-oval is completely different from New Hampshire Motor Speedway, the largest track Barrett has driven. He has prepared by watching video and driving some iRacing. “I’m just hoping to go there and kind of feel it out and hopefully it comes to me pretty quick.”

While Barrett does not plan to race in February, Barrett wants to get approval for superspeedways. He is looking at driving in additional series, including ARCA. When asked about the status of a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series ride, Barrett said, “Nothing’s done till it’s set in stone.”

“We’re just going to go down and try to get some experience in this Roger Carter Racing ARCA car, have some fun. … It’s definitely something that we’re looking to go to. Obviously it’s a step up, and it’s a fendered car and it’s Daytona. So hopefully I can go there and do well and get approved, and then we can take it from there and see what the next step is.”

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Dowling Set for Rookie Campaign

JT Motorsports announced today that they will field a second NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour car next season. Chase Dowling of Roxbury, CT will drive the No. 9 as a teammate to former champion Jamie Tomaino. The team will use a new 2014 Troyer with Billy the Kid power. Tomaino will be working on the car full-time in New Jersey. The combination will pair a rookie with one of the series most experienced drivers. The 17-year-old worked on Tomaino’s pit crew last year.

“Most of my 57 SK Modified® crew is going to come over and help work on the tour car,” Dowling said. “…My guys are going to be more track help.”

Dunleavy’s Truck & Trailer Repair and S&S Asphalt Paving are the primary sponsors. Spectro Performance Oils, All About You Home Care Services, John Carrigan Heating and Air Conditioning, Family Electric, Billy the Kid, Arbitell Convenience Stores, and Dough Broker will also be supporting the effort.

Doug Dunleavy will also sponsor defending champion Doug Coby, Jamie Tomaino, Tom Abele on the Whelen Southern Modified Tour, and SK and SK Light Modifieds at Stafford. S&S Asphalt Paving has been with Dowling since he was seven racing Go Karts. This is Dowling’s third year with Dunleavy. “It’s awesome to see that he’s given back to us and this guy that loves racing puts money into it and wants to see people do good. … He’s just good guy to be around, and I couldn’t be happier I met him three years ago at his shop.”

Continue reading ‘Dowling Set for Rookie Campaign’

Sprint to End NASCAR Sponsorship

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (December 16, 2014) – “NASCAR and Sprint have enjoyed a long and productive partnership that has returned significant value to both parties. We understand significant changes within Sprint and the highly competitive business environment it is in has led to a decision not to extend its Cup Series entitlement position following the 2016 season. The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series is a very unique, premium sports marketing platform with strong momentum, so we are very confident of moving forward in 2017 with an outstanding new partner. In the meantime, we look forward to Sprint’s partnership on the best racing series in the world for the next two seasons.”

Continue reading ‘Sprint to End NASCAR Sponsorship’

Expanded 2015 Sprint Unlimited Field to Feature Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Drivers

Former Daytona 500 Pole Winners Also Added to Season-Opening Showcase at Daytona

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (December 15, 2014) – Coming off an exciting 2014 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup finale, NASCAR announced today all 16 Chase drivers will be eligible to compete in the 2015 Sprint Unlimited at Daytona International Speedway (DIS). The 75-lap, non-points race will once again kick off the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series racing season Saturday, Feb. 14 (FOX, MRN Radio, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) and will feature an expanded field of drivers based on new eligibility requirements.

A minimum of 25 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers are eligible to participate in the Sprint Unlimited at DIS. In addition to the 2014 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup participants, the field also will include 2014 Coors Light Pole Award winners, as well as former Sprint Unlimited race winners and Daytona 500 pole winners who competed in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series full time in 2014. Any remaining spots will be filled by drivers highest in 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver championship points who are not already eligible.

“The 2015 Sprint Unlimited has potential to be one of the most competitive ever,” said NASCAR Executive Vice President and Chief Racing Development Officer Steve O’Donnell. “With more drivers eligible, the intensity level increases for our fans and competitors, making for a compelling start to the 2015 season.”

Continue reading ‘Expanded 2015 Sprint Unlimited Field to Feature Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Drivers’

NWAAS: Rocco Set for Charlotte

Keith Rocco of Wallingford, CT will be honored Friday during the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series banquet in Charlotte, NC. The 2010 national champion, Rocco finished on the podium for the sixth year in a row. He finished fourth in 2007-08.

“To finish in the top three consecutively as many times as we have, it’s a great feat in itself, and I’m very pleased to be able to be on the podium and represent NASCAR,” Rocco said.

Rocco is content with another strong effort. While drivers use the same points system, there are variables out of his control. NASCAR member tracks do not have a uniform Division I class or qualifying format. Some tracks use time trials, while others use heats and a driver’s starting position is handicapped based on recent finishes.

Continue reading ‘NWAAS: Rocco Set for Charlotte’

Moran Enjoying Second Title, Looking Forward to 2015

Phil Moran of Naugatuck, CT has spent his life in racing. For Moran, the second championship is “a little more special,” Moran said. “…This is our team as far as me concerned I’m the team manager, truck driver, the whole nine yards.”

11 years ago, Moran won his first championship with Todd Szegedy of Ridgefield, CT driving for Don Barker. The team had a lot of technical support from Chassis Dynamics.

Moran did not get to celebrate as much as he wanted at Thompson since he had to drive the transporter. Besides getting ready for the World Series, he has been busy building new cars for next season and NASCAR’s commitments as the championship team. He expects it to hit him during the celebration in Charlotte Saturday. The NASCAR Night of Champions honors the regional touring series. He especially wants to bring the championship trophy back to the shop.

It is first championship for Mike Smeriglio, III, owner of the Dunleavy’s Repair/HEX Performance No. 2 on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour. Driver Doug Coby of Milford, CT claimed his second title in the last three years.

“It was a well thought out move when we did it last year and it worked out for the good. It was a really good year.”

Continue reading ‘Moran Enjoying Second Title, Looking Forward to 2015′

John McCarthy Passes at 84

NEAR Hall of Famer, NEMA President & Championship Owner

Tilton, New Hampshire – John L. McCarthy, 84 a long time resident of Tilton died at his home Saturday, December 6, 2014 after a period of declining health.

Son of Alma (Levis) and John L. McCarthy, Sr., he was born in Mount Vernon, NY on June 21, 1930. John spent his youth in Quincy, MA. He was a graduate of Boston College High School (’48), attended Boston College, and earned an MBA from Worcester Polytechnic Institute. He served his country in the Army National Guard and lived for many years in Shrewsbury.

During his youth, John was a clubhouse boy for the Boston Red Sox and during breaks, often played cribbage with Ted Williams. John had a brilliantly analytical mind and was at the forefront of the Electronic Data Processing/Information Technology revolution as a Senior Executive at Wyman-Gordon Company for 29 years, retiring in 1985. He revolutionized Midget Auto Racing as well.

Upon retirement, John relocated to Tilton, NH from Shrewsbury and began a long career in public service as an active civic leader, having served as Selectman (chair), Police Commissioner, Planning Board member, and School Board member. He was hugely instrumental in the development of the Lakes Region Mall and often spoke at State House and Senate hearings on issues he felt important for the citizens of Tilton. He was involved with charitable work and served on the Board of Directors at St. Vincent Hospital and was a member of the Local Elks Lodge in Laconia and Worcester.

Inducted into the New England Auto Racing Hall of Fame in 2007, McCarthy was a championship car owner, designer/builder, and innovative promoter who brought Midget Auto Racing from the brink of extinction to the mainstream as President of the North East Midget Association during the 1960s-70s. Also in retirement, McCarthy pursued his first love – Auto Racing – at New Hampshire International Speedway where he was Vintage Coordinator for 20 years, bringing antique race cars from across America to the largest gathering of its kind in the country.

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NEMA General Membership Meeting Cites Strong Progress for 2015

Thompson, CT — NEMA held its annual membership meeting this past Sunday at the Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park clubhouse, with a strong showing of general members present. At the top of the agenda was a preview into the 2015 schedule, which will feature 3 events at Thompson, as well as events at Oswego, Seekonk, Monadnock, Evans Mills, Wiscasset, Lee USA and White Mountain – with tentative dates held for Waterford Speedbowl, Twin State, and Chemung, NY.

The club also elected a new President for the first time in over ten years – with Russ Stoehr running unopposed to take over the top seat in NEMA. Mike McCarthy and Mike Chambers were elected to the Vice President spots, Joe Santa Maria as Secretary and Paul Scally returns as Treasurer. A new Board was also elected with Tim Bertrand, Shawn Torrey, Paul Bigelow, Randy Cabral, Mike Scrivani and Dennis O’Brien taking over those seats.

The club also made additional major strides to help increase its membership base including the development of a Rookie Development program. Under this program, the club will secure track time for new drivers joining the NEMA Lite ranks to practice with the club, particularly noted – 12 and 13 year old drivers will be able to participate in the program. In addition, any driver that turns 13 during the competition season who has prior experience, that has passed the Rookie Development Program and has approval by the Board may compete with the Lite series. The minimum age for NEMA was also lowered to 15 years old with prior experience and Board approval.

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Bonsignore & Barry Crowned 2014 VMRS Champions

Manchester, NH. — Justin Bonsignore, of Holtsville, New York, completed his goal Saturday night, December 6, when he officially became the 2014 Valenti Modified Racing Series champion at the 11th annual VMRS Awards Banquet at Best Western Executive Inn, Manchester, NH.

The 26-year-old driver shared the podium with car owner Art Barry.

Bonsignore thanked his pit crew for their hard work and dedication, crew chief Kenny Barry, Spafco Race Cars & Parts, Spearpoint Racing, series sponsor Bob Valenti Auto Mall, VMRS officials, and gave a heartfelt thank you to car-owner Barry for making it possible and for giving him the opportunity and privilege to be part of a race team loaded with successful history for over 60 years.

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Focus, Hard Work Lead Rhodes to Title

Young Driver Remains Focused On Improving

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – What makes a champion? Is it talent, opportunity, coaching or luck?

If you ask 100 people that question you might get 100 different responses, but in the case of NASCAR Next driver Ben Rhodes, the 2014 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East champion, the most appropriate answer might be “focus.”

CHAMPION CAR OWNER: HARRY SCOTT JR.  |  CHAMPION CREW CHIEF: MARK MCFARLAND

Focus is what helped take a 17-year-old rookie from Louisville, Kentucky, and turn him into the top driver in the series.

“To be honest with you, I saw it in a couple of the races last year,” said car owner Harry Scott Jr. when asked about the moment he saw things click for Rhodes. “Then, once we got to Daytona this year, he really started coming off strong. Then he had that stretch where he won four races in a row and you could tell he was in a good place there. You can tell he is a dedicated student of the sport.”

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CHAMPION CAR OWNER: Harry Scott Jr.

Rhodes Championship Makes It Two-In-A-Row For Scott Jr.

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – If the past two seasons have been any indication, fans can expect to see a whole lot more of Harry Scott Jr. during the NASCAR Touring Series Night of Champions event in Charlotte.

One year removed from winning his first championship as a car owner for Turner Scott Motorsports in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East, Scott finds himself once again celebrating a championship at the end of the season.

CHAMPION DRIVER: BEN RHODES  |  CHAMPION CREW CHIEF: MARK MCFARLAND

With a racing program that was put together less than three months prior to the start of the 2013 season, team co-owner Scott continues to enjoy developing young talent into championship drivers, much like what happened with Ben Rhodes and the No. 41 Alpha Energy Solutions Chevrolet as they brought to Turner Scott Motorsports another NASCAR K&N Pro Series East title.

Continue reading ‘CHAMPION CAR OWNER: Harry Scott Jr.’

CHAMPION CREW CHIEF: Mark McFarland

Wins Title In First Year Working With Rhodes

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Mark McFarland is no stranger to championship battles.

In 2011, McFarland, a crew chief in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East since 2009, and driver Mat DiBenedetto were in the hunt for the championship. They won their first race together that season but would ultimately settle for fourth in the final championship standings.

CHAMPION DRIVER: BEN RHODES  |  CHAMPION OWNER: HARRY SCOTT JR.

This season, he paired with Turner Scott Motorsports and rookie driver Ben Rhodes. The result was five victories, six poles, 11 top fives and 13 top 10s in 16 starts en route to a title and a trip to the NASCAR Night of Champions in Charlotte, North Carolina.

“It felt great,” said McFarland about winning his first series crown as a crew chief. “You feel like you’ve accomplished a lot. You set goals for yourself and then you achieve them. It felt like a relief, for one, but then just feeling really proud of everyone on the team.”

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K&N West to Meridian

Meridian (ID) Speedway has announced that the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West will visit on September 5, 2015. The inaugural race on the quarter mile oval will be the Idaho 208.

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VMRS: Barry & Bonsignore to be Honored Saturday

Justin Bonsignore of Holtsville, NY entered the season with championship aspirations on two fronts. As a driver, he was pursuing full schedules with Ken Massa’s No. 51 on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour and the No. 21 on the Valenti Modified Racing Series for hall of famer Art Barry. The new season brought a new tire to the VMRS, while Bonsignore had to get used to new tracks and qualifying heats. He also had a new chassis under him in SPAFCO.

Bonsignore hopes Saturday night’s banquet will help his accomplishments sink in. Bonsignore won his first Valenti Modified Racing Series championship with one win, 12 top fives, 13 top 10s in 17 starts. It is the second for Barry of Preston, CT.

“It was an amazing year,” Bonsignore said. “…To actually go out and to be right in the thick of it for a good part of the season on both ends it was something else. It was a breakout year for myself personally and it was a pleasure to be a part of both teams. It was a lot of fun, a lot of good times had, and a lot of good success, which always helps.”

The team started the year well behind drivers like Chris Pasteryak and Todd Szegedy who began the season with consistent finishes. Bonsignore admittedly “dug ourselves a big hole the first race with a DNF,”at Waterford. A part failure at Thompson brought down his standing again after a pair of runner-up efforts at Monadnock and Seekonk.

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Ben Rhodes to Join All-Star Lineup in JRM’s No. 88 Chevrolet

MOORESVILLE, N.C. (Dec. 5, 2014) – JR Motorsports announced today that Ben Rhodes, the reigning K&N Pro Series East champion, will drive 10 NASCAR XFINITY Series races in the No. 88 Chevrolet in 2015.  The 17-year-old Rhodes joins an all-star lineup of drivers for the No. 88 team that includes Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kevin Harvick and Kasey Kahne in select races.  Alpha Energy Solutions will sponsor the Rhodes-driven races.

A native of Louisville, Kentucky, Rhodes won the K&N Pro Series East championship as a rookie.  With the title he also claimed Sunoco Rookie of the Year honors and the series’ most popular driver award.  His mammoth 2014 included five wins, 11 top-five and 13 top-10 finishes.  Rhodes also competed four times in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, earning one top-five and three top-10 finishes.

“Ben is one of the rising talents in NASCAR,” JR Motorsports general manager Kelley Earnhardt Miller said.  “As a company, JRM takes pride in cultivating young drivers, and together with Alpha Energy Solutions, we’re thrilled to give Ben a platform to further develop his skills at the next level.  I’m excited to see what this coming year will bring for him and the 88 team.”
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Blewett Set to Return Part-Time in 2015

Icebreaker, Spring Sizzler Planned For Tour Return

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – After a year’s absence, five-time NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour race winner Jimmy Blewett is planning to return to the tour with a partial schedule in 2015.

“I’m going to run the Icebreaker and the Spring Sizzler, and a few races here and there throughout the season,” Blewett said. “I’m not going to be able to make it full-time, but I’ll be there when I can get there.”

Blewett, from Howell, New Jersey, has posted five wins and 36 top 10s in 105 career Whelen Modified Tour starts. He last competed in 2013 when he made six appearances.

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NASCAR K&N Pro Series East Coming to Motordrome

See the Stars of Tomorrow In Action

Smithton, PA (December 5, 2014) – Kevin Harvick and Chase Elliott capped historic seasons with championships in NASCAR’s Sprint Cup Series and Nationwide Series respectively. Darrell Wallace, Jr. grabbed four race wins and finished the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season in third place.

What do these three racing superstars have in common? All are veterans of NASCAR’s K&N Pro Series, the top rung on stock car racing’s developmental ladder.

And racing fans in Southwest Pennsylvania will have a special opportunity to see the next generation of rising stars in 2015 when the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East makes its inaugural visit to Motordrome Speedway on Saturday, August 15.

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Dave Comeau Ready to Transition From DARE Stocks to Limited Late Models and Chase R.A.D. Automachine $1,000 Rookie Bonus at Stafford

Stafford Springs, CT — After winning the inaugural R.A.D. Automachine Rookie of the Year honor for the DARE Stock division in 2013, Stafford Speedway driver David J. Comeau is ready to race for a second R.A.D. rookie title as he makes the move into the Limited Late Model division for the 2015 season.  Comeau’s rookie title in 2013 was worth a $400 bonus to the Palmer, MA native and if he can once again be the top rookie in 2015, he will take home a $1,000 bonus from R.A.D. Automachine.

“That’s great,” said Comeau.  “Winning Rookie of the Year is definitely an achievement that I want to stride for.  Two years ago I won the inaugural R.A.D. Automachine Rookie of the Year award in the DARE Stocks and I was really proud of that.  I really want to win that again in the Limited Late Models.”

While Comeau has his sights set on winning the R.A.D. Automachine Rookie of the Year honors next season, it was almost a goal that never came to fruition.  Originally Comeau’s plan was to sell his DARE Stock at the end of the 2014 season and get out of racing.  But some encouragement from both his wife and crew members changed Comeau’s mind and he decided keep racing, and make the move up a division into the Limited Late Model ranks.

Continue reading ‘Dave Comeau Ready to Transition From DARE Stocks to Limited Late Models and Chase R.A.D. Automachine $1,000 Rookie Bonus at Stafford’

Legend Cars to Run Weekly in 2015 at Stafford Speedway

Stafford Springs, CT — After a 20-year hiatus, the INEX/U.S. Legend Cars returned to weekly competition at Stafford Motor Speedway in 2014.  After a limited schedule in 2014, the Legend Cars will run all 21 Friday night events plus the NAPA Spring Sizzler and NAPA Fall Final weekend events for a total of 23 races in 2015.

“We’re excited to have the Legend Cars as part of our full race program in 2015,” said Stafford Assistant GM David Arute, who was instrumental in bringing the Legend Cars to Stafford this past season.  “We had great competition with a condensed schedule and the racing should be even better with our expanded schedule for the Legend Cars.  With all of the young drivers in the Legend Cars we’re really excited about the prospect of watching the next Stafford Speedway star come up through the ranks.”

One driver who will be looking forward to the expanded schedule is Devin O’Connell.  O’Connell is a graduate of the Monday night Wild Thing Kart Series and he put his experience and knowledge of the Stafford Mini-Mile to good use as he won on his Stafford Legend Cars debut this past September.   O’Connell has the Stafford track title in his visions for the 2015 season.

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Call Before You Dig Returns as Title Sponsor Of August Whelen Modified Tour Event At Stafford Motor Speedway

Stafford Springs, CT — Stafford Motor Speedway has announced that Call Before You Dig has returned as the title sponsor of the track’s August 7th NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour event.  The 2015 Call Before You Dig 150 will mark the second consecutive season that CBYD has served as the title sponsor of the NWMT race at Stafford.

“We were all very pleased with our sponsorship of the race this season,” said Derek Brown, Vice President of Damage Prevention and Education for Call Before You Dig.  “This race works out great for us to be able to not only promote Call Before You Dig, but our 811 nationwide number and our www.cbyd.com website as well.  The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour race brings the biggest crowds, so it’s an ideal race for us to sponsor in order to reach the largest audience.  That fact combined with the close proximity of the race date to August 11 is the perfect combination for CBYD.  August 11th is National 811 Day, which we use to remind everyone that it’s the law and you must call 811 before undertaking any type of project that involves digging underground.”

Last year’s Call Before You Dig 150 saw hometown driver Woody Pitkat score his very first career NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour in a dominating drive that saw him lead 111 of the race’s 150 laps to beat Ronnie Silk to the checkered flag by over 3 seconds.

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44th Annual NAPA Auto Parts Spring Sizzler To Kick Off 2015 Season at Stafford Speedway

Stafford Springs, CT — When the green flag waves for the 44th Annual NAPA Auto Parts Spring Sizzler on April 25 & 26, 2015, NAPA Auto Parts will be geared up for their second season with Stafford Motor Speedway.  NAPA Auto Parts became the Elite Corporate Sponsor and the title sponsor of the track’s marquee events, the NAPA Spring Sizzler, the NAPA Fall Final, and the uniquely formatted NAPA SK 5k, prior to the start of the 2014 season.  All three races will return to the Stafford Speedway schedule in 2015, along with the fan friendly NAPA Pit Parties.

“We’re excited to be part of another season at Stafford Motor Speedway,” said Mike Wheeler, Connecticut District Operation Manager for NAPA.  “Not only are the race fans our customers, but a lot of the teams do business with NAPA for their auto parts, so Stafford Speedway is a great place for us to be and to reach out to the fans and the teams.  We looked at 2014 as a developmental season and now we are gearing up for an even bigger and better 2015.”

“We are fortunate to be associated with NAPA Auto Parts and are proud to have them as the Official Auto Parts of Stafford Motor Speedway,” explained Mark Arute, Stafford Speedway President/COO.  “NAPA is an industry leader thanks to their professionalism and quality customer service, those are two traits that we always strive to achieve here at Stafford.  Our three NAPA sponsored events this past season were all extremely positive events and we’re looking forward to promoting these events and getting the NAPA brand name out to our fan base and our teams.  We’re proud to have the opportunity to carry the NAPA Auto Parts name as part of the Stafford Motor Speedway family.”

Continue reading ’44th Annual NAPA Auto Parts Spring Sizzler To Kick Off 2015 Season at Stafford Speedway’

Stafford Motor Speedway Announces 2015 Racing Schedule

Stafford Springs, CT — Stafford Motor Speedway has released its 2015 NASCAR Whelen All-American Series event schedule. The 2015 schedule will consist of 145 feature events and 23 race dates, kicking off with the 44th Annual NAPA Auto Parts Spring Sizzler on April 24-26, and concluding with the 43rd Annual NAPA Auto Parts Fall Final Weekend on October 3-4. New for 2015 the U.S. Legend Cars will be a weekly division running every Friday night, bringing the total weekly division count to 6.

“We are really excited to announce our 2015 schedule, it looks a lot like the 2014 schedule with the addition of weekly racing for the legends,” explained Mark Arute, Stafford’s President/COO. “The focus of 2015 will be to strengthen our weekly program and focus on our drivers and fans. The last few years we have launched events that have had great reception like the NAPA SK 5k and BFF night. We have a renewed focus to develop events like these and make sure they have lasting effects on weekly racing at Stafford. Anytime you can post $26,000 in purse money or have an event that gets new faces to the track it’s a win for Stafford, the fans, and the drivers.”

“We want to make sure the fans and the drivers know that we are committed to them and are committed to weekly short track racing”, said Dave Arute, Stafford’s Assistant General Manager. “Stafford’s drivers are some of the best in the country and we want to continue to provide the platform for the unbelievable racing we saw in 2014. We are excited for 2015 and hope the fans and the drivers are as well.”

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NSL Merchandise Trailer Offers Much for Fans and Drivers!

Windom, MN (December 5, 2014) – The National Sprint League is proud to announce the addition of a merchandise trailer that will be present at 2015 events. Sheryl and Lexi Mills of Bondurant, Iowa will be working a trailer that will have benefits for both fans and member drivers of the NSL.

In addition to a wide variety of apparel and items, the trailer will be open to NSL member teams to sell their merchandise as well. Sheryl and Lexi have been attending races at the Knoxville Raceway as far back as they can remember. They are a racing family, as Lexi races micro-sprints throughout the summer. The past three seasons they have worked part-time in a merchandise trailer.

“We are thrilled to have this opportunity to work with the National Sprint League,” says Sheryl. “We look forward to working with all the fans and drivers this year. Having a series like this in the Midwest is just what we needed for sprint car racing! We are blessed to have such an amazing opportunity to travel with the National Sprint League and be a part of such a great organization. We’ve always loved working in a merchandise trailer and having the interaction with so many die hard race fans. To be able to travel with one another (Mother/Daughter) all over the Midwest, and call this a ‘job’ is awesome.”

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Remembering A Grand Champion

Four-Time West Champ Schmitt Left Indelible Legacy On NASCAR

Whether it was as a businessman in his hometown of Redding, California or racing stock cars – Bill Schmitt worked hard to be the best at whatever he did and gained a lot of respect along the way.

Schmitt passed away in November at the age of 78. A public celebration of his life will be held from 1-3 p.m. on Saturday at the Shasta Baptist Church in Redding.

His hard work was evident in both of his endeavors. He was a successful entrepreneur – running multiple businesses during his lifetime and being well-respected. He was particularly well-known in the logging industry in Northern California.

In racing, Schmitt was a four-time champion and one of the most popular drivers of his era in what was then known as the NASCAR Winston West Series (now the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West). He raced in the series for 20 seasons, from 1974 to 1993. During that span he competed in 237 races, scoring 19 wins and garnering 24 poles. Several of his career marks remain as records in the modern era of the series (1971 to present): 122 top-five finishes, 163 top-10 finishes and 4,274 laps led.

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Lia Teams With Sypher For 2015

Two-Time NWMT Champ To Drive No. 8 TCS Racing Chevrolet

LONG ISLAND – Donny Lia and Mark Sypher have joined forces to run the 2015 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour (NWMT) in the No. 8 Chevrolet.

Lia, the 2007 and 2009 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour champion, is looking forward to this new opportunity. In late October, it was announced that the two-time champion would be parting ways with Mystic Missile Racing, which he had raced for since 2007.

“I’m really excited about this new challenge,” said Lia. “I want to thank Mark for his interest in partnering with me and for the opportunity to drive his cars. We’re really creating a new team from the ground up and it’s exciting to have this fresh start.”

Sypher, who has been a NWMT team owner for nine years, is excited about the opportunity to combine resources with Lia and build a championship contending team in 2015.

“Joining forces with Donny is going to put us in a great position for 2015,” said Sypher. “I do want to note that I wish Glen Reen the best in his next opportunity. He’s a hard working individual and did a great job with what we had. This decision primarily is based on combining resources with Donny to create a better race team and contend for a championship this year.”

Lia, who has 17 wins in the touring series, will pilot a LFR Chassis in 2015.

“I really think we’ll have a championship winning team right out of the gate,” continued Lia. “We’ve got good cars, good motors and some good people. I’ll have a few guys coming back from my #18 days, which I’m really excited about. There’s no reason why we couldn’t compete for wins right away.”

The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour season opens up with the Icebreaker race at Thompson Speedway on April 10-12.

Sources: TCS Racing PR

Rhodes Reigns in K&N East

Louisville Driver to be Honored December 13

Ben Rhodes of Louisville, KY made his first campaign in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East memorable. The NASCAR Next driver took the series by storm claiming many laurels this season: the championship, Most Popular Driver, and Rookie of the Year awards. He led virtually every category: wins, top fives, top 10s, poles, laps completed, laps led, average start, and average finish.

“It’s been a great season and looking back it’s been kind of a whirlwind that has gone by very fast, but at the same time, it’s been kind of a long journey to get to this point,” Rhodes said. “I know that there’s been a lot of hard work and dedication by all the guys on my team as well as myself throughout the year. But I think we had a lot of good luck on our side too in the beginning of the year, but then towards the end luck kind of left our side. We had some mistakes. We didn’t get any more wins after our fifth one, but either way it was a very strong season for us and it all came down to that hard work and communication that our guys had that kind of determined the outcome of all these races.”

Rhodes ran a partial schedule last season with Turner Scott Motorsports. Despite an average finish of 13, Rhodes knew the foundation was there. He was not surprised when the team had speed early in the season. His Late Model car owner and crew chief Lee McCall handled the crew chief duties for Rhodes’ first seven races for Turner Scott Motorsports. “It was a little bit easier transition having the same guy to work with when going to these bigger track like Bristol and Iowa and these places that I’ve never seen or been to before.”

“We had a lot of ups and downs. The finishes don’t really do us justice on how our performance was. There was a lot of other stuff that was going on that was good on our end. We had a lot of great performance. We had fast cars, but it seemed like something always went wrong where we couldn’t finish the race up front or we had the car to beat but something would happen.”

“I knew we had it in us. It took a couple of races to get our stuff down and get on the right path, but once it did I grabbed hold and we were able to go out there and string the wins together and I think that shows the strength that we had. It was just cool that we could bring it all together in one place like that, which is extremely hard to do, but I feel like we’ve had it from the season before. We had that momentum coming our way.”

Continue reading ‘Rhodes Reigns in K&N East’

Coby Delivers On Title Expectations

Second For Driver Secures Long-Awaited First For Team

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – “Patience is a virtue.” “Good things come to those who wait.” “Great works are performed not be strength but by perseverance.”

Pick your favorite quote about fortitude. Chances are, it will apply to Doug Coby, the driver whose enduring patience has resulted in two NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour championships in the last three years.

CHAMPION CAR OWNER: MIKE SMERIGLIO III  |  CHAMPION CREW CHIEF: PHIL MORAN

In an age where rising stock car racers emerge seemingly younger by the year, Coby didn’t get a shot in a championship-caliber ride until age 32. It was an opportunity, at one point, he thought may never come.

Continue reading ‘Coby Delivers On Title Expectations’

CHAMPION CAR OWNER: Mike Smeriglio III

Gets Long-Awaited First Tour Title

NASCAR is a passion-driven sport. Passsion from the competitors, from the team personnel, and especially from the fans. Few bring more passion than newly-minted NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour champion car owner Mike Smeriglio III.

CHAMPION DRIVER: DOUG COBY  |  CHAMPION CREW CHIEF: PHIL MORAN

One of the best brand ambassadors in the Whelen Modified Tour garage, Smeriglio’s effervescent demeanor and willingness to help out in any way he can buoys his team as well as the entire tour contingent. It’s not uncommon for Smeriglio to loan a back-up car to a competing team that encountered issues and was in danger of not being able to participate in a race, or to give an opportunity for a younger driver to race a second team entry.

“The people in the garage, the officials, the track owners; it’s my second family,” Smeriglio said. “You treat those the way you want to be treated back. I’ve always been given a lot of respect in this series, and because of that it’s my way of giving back.”

Continue reading ‘CHAMPION CAR OWNER: Mike Smeriglio III’

CHAMPION CREW CHIEF: Phil Moran

Second Tour Title For Modified Veteran

Long considered one of the elite crew chiefs on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, the case for that exclusive status was significantly bolstered in 2014 when Phil Moran added a second tour title to his résumé.

A second championship, which came with a different driver and car owner, and in a different era of Whelen Modified Tour competition.

CHAMPION DRIVER: DOUG COBY  |  CHAMPION CAR OWNER: MIKE SMERIGLIO III

Originally from Preston, Connecticut, Moran got his start in NASCAR modified racing in 1985 with car owner Art Barry and driver Greg Sacks. He’s attained varied experience along the way, including his first Whelen Modified Tour title in 2003 with driver Todd Szegedy and car owner Don Barker. Continue reading ‘CHAMPION CREW CHIEF: Phil Moran’