Waterford, CT — Young Anthony Nocella picked-up right where he left-off in 2009 at the Waterford Speedbowl, handily capturing the 25-lap NEMA Lites “Budweiser Blastoff” feature on Saturday evening.
A highlight of the event was the appearance of 1971 Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year and New England Auto Racing Hall of Fame member Dennis Zimmerman who served as honorary starter.
It was the 5th career Lites feature victory for Nocella, who last season scored the Speedbowl’s “Nostalgia Weekend” feature on July 25.
A caution-free affair, pole-sitter BJ MacDonald built a commanding early lead before fading. Todd Bertrand then took the point, leading until the final circuit when overtaken by Nocella.
Entering the event, the winner sensed that his Bobby Seymour-owned Hawk was “the best it’s ever-been,” enabling him to strategically plan his moves. The result was a slick last-lap pass for the win.
“I knew the car was great after practice. All the hard work during the off-season really put us in a position to win today,” stated Nocella following the event. “After getting to second, I chased Todd Bertrand for a few laps studying the way he was handling traffic. My car was so-good that I knew that all it would take was for him to slip just a little, and I’d get-by. He did, and that’s when I made my move – I was able to use patience in this race, and it paid-off. I love this place, It’s a great midget track.”
Completing the top-5 was Russ Wood Jr., Eric Cabral, and defending NEMA “full-midget” champion, Randy Cabral.
Earlier in the afternoon, Eric Cabral captured the qualifying heat win.
NEMA action continues on Sunday of “Budweiser Blastoff” weekend at the Speedbowl with a 25-lap feature for the “full midgets.”
The Lites Series next visits Winchester, New Hampshire’s Monadnock Speedway on Saturday evening, May 29.
For more information on the Lites series visit www.nemaracing.com.
Sources: NEMA Lites PR
FEATURE RESULTS (25); 1. Anthony Nocella, 2. Todd Bertrand, 3. Russ Wood Jr., 4. Eric Cabral, 5. Randy Cabral, 6. Jake Smith, 7. Lansen Fornoro, 8. BJ MacDonald, 9. Bethany Viets, 10. Kevin Parks, 11. Dave Moniz, 12. Joey Mucciacciaro, 13. Chris Haskell.