Archive for May, 2011

Twin State, Thunder Road Next Stops for NEMA

Brockton, MA —  The Northeastern Midget Association heads “North” in June. A visit to Twin State Speedway (Claremont, NH) on Saturday night, June 11, precedes a return to Thunder Road Speedbowl in Barre, VT on Sunday afternoon, June 19.

The NEMA LITES are on both dates as well. Ryan Bigelow, who scored his first-ever Lites win a few weeks back at Waterford Speedbowl, leads the club into two of Northern New England’s most historic ovals.

Randy Cabral and the Bertrand team aim to make it three straight at Twin State. “A demanding place,” offers Cabral who bested Adam Cantor in two of those wins. Now a car owner, Cantor, who was also second to Bobby Santos III back in ’08, will no doubt have some advice for driver Jeremy Frankoski.

Continue reading ‘Twin State, Thunder Road Next Stops for NEMA’

Mike Brightman breaks Pro Stock winless streak; Ed Gannon picks up first Sport Truck win; Sparky inherits Street Stock win, while Vanasse makes it 60% for 2011; Bill Chouinard picks up Pure Stock exhibition

Seekonk, MA — Mighty Mike Brightman of Acushnet roared up behind Warwick driver Tom Scully, Sr. in both the heat and feature races to wrest victory from the latter in the waning laps by half a car in both events. In the feature, the final three laps was a door-to-door duel that had the crowd on its feet in delight at the action. Neither driver gave an inch, unwilling to relinquish victory. In the end, Brightman, running the outside groove, earned his sweat equity with a .049 second edge. The feature win was Brightman’s first in three years on the Pro Stock circuit after winning rookie of the year honors upon his entry. The duo had engaged in a similar battle after Scully took the lead in their heat race on the second lap. Brightman rambled up behind him, then went to the outside for a pass on lap 9 of the 12-lapper, winning the heat by .117 seconds.

The senior Scully leapt off the pole at the green and quickly disappeared from polesitter, Jason Ferreira’s view screen. Somerset’s Kevin Casper went to second from his position on the outside of the second row, while Jake Vanada came around Ferreira for third. Spencer immediately dived under Ferreira and Scott Dion for a big three-wide, coming out in fourth. Tom Scully, Jr. also made his way underneath and into fifth.

Brightman, meanwhile, was coming around Rob Murphy, who was making his first divisional start of the season. There was momentary contact between the two, but neither car wavered and Brightman moved ahead.

[Photo Galleryby Nicholas Teto

[Pro Stock Results]
[Late Model Results]
[Street Stock Results]
[Sport Truck Results]
[Pure Stock Results]

Continue reading ‘Mike Brightman breaks Pro Stock winless streak; Ed Gannon picks up first Sport Truck win; Sparky inherits Street Stock win, while Vanasse makes it 60% for 2011; Bill Chouinard picks up Pure Stock exhibition’

Action-Filled Night in Front of Large Crowd Caps Holiday Weekend

Waterford, CT — Waterford Speedbowl was ready for the smashing on Sunday evening, hosting the annual Memorial Day Madness. A large crowd gathered to celebrate the start of summer, completing a run of three-straight event days at the track. A Demo Derby and Speedbowl Trailer Race were the main attractions on the night, along with a Ski Car race, Rollover contest and Flagpole race all on the agenda as well. The night was capped off by a Fireworks salute to our nation over the race surface on a beautiful holiday weekend evening.

Chad Navin of Manchester began the night with a victory in Ski Car race, with “ski’s” mounted on the rear of front wheel drive cars instead of tires. At the end of 10 laps of mayhem and spinning cars all around the Speedbowl oval, it was Navin who mastered the art of “skiing” the Speedbowl’s three-eighths mile race surface.

In the 5-lap Flagpole race, where drivers had to circle a “flagpole” obstacle placed in the middle of the track at the start finish line, contact and madness ensued often each time around the flagpole. In the end, Michael Kilmartin Jr. of North Haven claimed the victory.

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Krawiec Beats Chaffee in Dramatic USAC Dirt Midget Association Inaugural at Bear Ridge Speedway

Bradford, VT — The inaugural race of the USAC Dirt Midget Association at Bear Ridge Speedway in Bradford, VT couldn’t have been any more dramatic if it had been scripted in advance. In his first time racing a Midget, home state hero and former Bear Ridge Coupe Champion Kevin Chaffee of Fairlee came within three laps of pulling off the upset of his career, only to see his hopes dashed by his teammate for the night, 2010 Whip City Speedway Midget Champion Joe Krawiec of Bristol. CT.

“I tried going to the inside because Kevin was running the high groove where the track was tackier,” said Krawiec. “I could get along side him, but I couldn’t get by him. I knew I was running out of laps, so I went into turn one as far as I could and as hard as I could, just hoping it would stick. It did, and I was able to carry enough momentum to pass him on the outside going in to turn three.”

“I could hear Joe alongside me for a few laps and I saw the nose of his car once or twice,” said Chaffee. “I moved down the race track a little so he wouldn’t have any room to get by and I shouldn’t have. The top was faster and once he got by me he was gone.”

Chaffee picked up the ride because the regular driver, 1971 Indy 500 Rookie of the Year Denny Zimmerman was in Indianapolis as an honored guest during the 100th running of the Brickyard Classic. Both Chaffee’s car and Krawiec’s car are owned by New England Auto Racers Hall of Famer Skip Matzak. After a brief orientation by Krawiec, Chaffee won the first Midget race he entered by picking up a win in his heat, Krawiec won his heat as well.

Continue reading ‘Krawiec Beats Chaffee in Dramatic USAC Dirt Midget Association Inaugural at Bear Ridge Speedway’

Pennink Wins Wild Twin State Race

Claremont, N.H. — Rowan Pennink of Huntingdon Valley, PA., survived six caution periods and three red flags to win the 100-lap Valenti Modified Racing Series event, Saturday night, at Twin State Speedway, Claremont, NH. The victory was Pennink’s third with the VMRS and his first of the 2011 season.

Chris Pasteryak, Lisbon, CT., and Jon McKennedy, E. Chelmsford, MA., brought the field to green with McKennedy jumping into the lead until Pasteryak took over the top spot on lap four. Pasteryak then set the pace before turning over the lead to Pennink on lap 39. Pennink led the remaining 60 laps to secure the win.

“Gary Casella and the 25 team did an awesome job, this car was strong all day,” Pennink said, “Got out front, got by Chris for the lead and just held them off from there.” The 25-year-old driver received challenges from Pasteryak, and Todd Patnode, of Richmond, NH., late in the race but was never headed.

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Staskowski and Cassidy visit Victory Lane before fog rolls in; Russ Wood captures ISMA Supermodified feature

Waterford, CT (May 28, 2011) – Waterford Speedbowl completed three of five scheduled events on Saturday evening before heavy fog rolled in, forcing the end of the ISMA Supermodified race three laps shy of its scheduled distance, and the postponement of the remaining two feature events. In racing action, Rich Staskowski of Hope Valley, RI picked up the victory in the Bob Valenti Auto Mall Late Model feature, his first on the season.

Defending Mini Stock champion Ken Cassidy raced to his 27th career division win, his second victory on the year. In ISMA Supermodified action Russ Wood of Pelham, NH was the winner in a crash marred race, shortened to 47 laps. The final three laps were halted after the fog was too thick to continue.

The 35-lap SK Modified® feature scheduled for the night will be made up on the June 18 race program, while the scheduled 25-lap Street Stock race will be made up on June 11. Each division will compete in double features on those nights.

Continue reading ‘Staskowski and Cassidy visit Victory Lane before fog rolls in; Russ Wood captures ISMA Supermodified feature’

Russ Wood Wins a Wild One at Waterford ISMA Opener

Waterford, CT — “It’s a win, we’ll take it,” said seven time ISMA Champion Russ Wood, as he peered through the dense fog to the crowd, with an apology and a shrug of the shoulders for a rough night of racing on Memorial Day Weekend at the Waterford Speedbowl. Ben Seitz from Bourne MA, looked like he was going to be the clear cut winner, until a tangle with lap traffic ended his march to victory. The race would not be restarted after this lap 47 caution, as heavy fog moved onto the speedway making racing impossible. When the checkered flags flew mercifully the race was three laps shy of the scheduled 50 laps. Russ Wood ended up in the top spot without ever leading a green flag lap. Chris Perley was second, with Johnny Benson Jr third.

On a night that barely made it past the half-way point before being stopped by 2 red flags, Wood stated, “It was a bad race. Sorry about that fans, nothing we can do about it now, I couldn’t see nothing out there. That last yellow I thought I was still second, I don’t know what happened to the 17. It’s a win, we’ll take it. I would like to thank Jeff Holbrook and Brian Allegresso for a great car and working hard all year and the track for having us.”

“No I can’t see a thing out there, I didn’t see a thing. It was an interesting night, it must be a full moon up above the fog somewhere. I guess I’m happy to come home top 3- too bad for Ben it looked like he had us covered. I’m not sure what happened out there but it was tough to see at the end, it was a tough one and it’s over.”, said second place finisher Chris Perley. Perley overcame a lap 1 accident to finish second to Wood.

Continue reading ‘Russ Wood Wins a Wild One at Waterford ISMA Opener’

Jeremy Frankoski Readies for Night Before The 500

Huntersville, NC — Jeremy Frankoski may not be participating in this year’s Indianapolis 500, but the avid IZOD IndyCar Series fan will partake in the historic Night Before the 500, a USAC Mopar Midget race at Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis this Saturday night.

Recently, the NorthEastern Midget Association (NEMA) competitor tested at the legendary short track with Santos Motorsports to prepare him for what is considered one of American’s most traditional Motorsports events. Teaming up with Adam Cantor Racing (ACR) in his No. 7NY IGA / Lucas Oil Mopar, the duo is hopeful for a big payout not to mention a huge night of celebration in what would be the team’s biggest career win.

“I’m definitely looking forward to Saturday night,” said Frankoski, a former USAC Ford Focus Carolina champion. “I cannot thank Santos Motorsports and Bobby Santos III enough for allowing me to come up with them to Lucas Oil Raceway a couple weeks ago and test with them. Hopefully, the extra seat time will give us the preparation needed going into the weekend.”

Continue reading ‘Jeremy Frankoski Readies for Night Before The 500’

Silk Soars To Victory

Leads Every Lap At Stafford For Fifth Career Win

Stafford, CT — Ron Silk returned to Victory Lane for the first time in a NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour race since 2009 and he did it in dominating fashion with a wire-to-wire run in the TSI Harley-Davidson 125 Friday at Stafford Motor Speedway.

Silk, who hadn’t taken a checkered flag home since winning at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Sept. 19, 2009, led all 125 laps to collect his fifth career win in his 25th start at Stafford.

Points leader Rowan Pennink followed in second with defending Whelen Modified Tour Champion Bobby Santos third. Ted Christopher and Erick Rudolph completed the top five.

[Photo Galleryby Nicholas Teto

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Rocco, Pitkat, Galko, Nocera & Saunders Score TSI Harley-Davidson 125 Feature Victories at Stafford Speedway

Stafford Springs, CT — Stafford Speedway was back on track with a 5-division NASCAR Whelen All-American Series sharing the track with the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour event as part of the 21st Annual TSI Harley-Davidson 125 on Friday, May 27th. Keith Rocco scored his second victory of the season one week after destroying his car in a heat race accident in the 40-lap SK Modified® feature event, Woody Pitkat picked up his first win of the 2011 season after starting shotgun on the field in the 30-lap Late Model feature, Matt Galko picked up his second feature win of the season in the 20-lap SK Light Modified feature, George Nocera, Jr. picked up his third win of the 2011 season in the 20-lap Limited Late Model feature, and Cliff Saunders picked up his first win of 2011 in the 15-lap DARE Stock feature.

In the 40-lap SK Modified® feature event, Adam Skowyra brought the yellow out with a spin into the turn 3 wall with one lap complete. Curt Brainard led the first lap and he again took the lead back under green, but Tom Bolles was hanging tough to the outside of Brainard. Eric Berndt was stalking the top-2 cars and he nearly got by both Bolles and Brainard on lap-4, but he settled into line behind Brainard.

Brainard held the lead until lap-8 when Berndt moved to the front of the field. Bolles continued to hold down third behind Berndt and Brainard, with Mark Bakaj fourth, Frank Ruocco fifth, and Keith Rocco sixth. Ruocco was able to get by Bakaj for fourth on lap-11 and Rocco, Glen Reen, and Woody Pitkat all got by Bakaj.

[Photo Gallery] by Nicholas Teto

Continue reading ‘Rocco, Pitkat, Galko, Nocera & Saunders Score TSI Harley-Davidson 125 Feature Victories at Stafford Speedway’

SCCA Highlights NHMS Holiday Weekend

Loudon, NH — The New England Region Sports Car Club of America will zoom around New Hampshire Motor Speedway’s road course this weekend beginning Saturday through Sunday.

The SCCA will host its NERRC Triple Play and NARRC Double Play regional races at “The Magic Mile” with 20 minute qualifying sessions on Saturday and Sunday morning, followed by racing in the afternoon.

During SCCA weekends car enthusiasts can enjoy a wide range of sports cars including racing sedans, sports racers and open-wheel racers throughout the weekend.

During all SCCA event weekends, infield wristbands (good for the entire weekend) can be purchased at the speedway’s main gate for $25. Children 11 and under are free. For more information or to register visit

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Preece Dominant in Sunoco Modified Feature; Douton Takes Limited Sportsman Extra-Distance Race; Gelinas, Materas, McDermott and Field among Thompson Winners

Thompson, CT — On the 71st anniversary of its first race, Thompson International Speedway hosted 95 race cars in the 6 NASCAR Whelen All-American Series divisions. Ryan Preece of Berlin, CT scored his first career Sunoco Modified victory. Chris “Moose” Douton took a borrowed ride to victory lane in the extra-distance Limited Sportsman event. Larry Gelinas posted his first victory of the season in Super Late Model action.

John Materas of Voluntown, CT continued his early season success with his second win of the year in the Late Models. Cam McDermott of Scituate, RI earned his first win of the year in the TIS Modifieds. Danny Field of Deep River, CT notched his third win on the season in the Mini Stocks.

Ryan Preece led pole to pole to score his first victory of the season in the caution-free 30-lap Sunoco Modified feature. Danny Cates and Ryan Preece were on the front row for the green flag, Preece controlled the event from when he took the lead off turn 2 and was never headed. Keith Rocco tried to advance on the low line past Todd Ceravolo but was kept at bay. Ted Christopher, whose car was repaired after a broken tie rod in the heat race, was up to fifth by lap 12.

[Photo Gallery] by Nicholas Teto

Continue reading ‘Preece Dominant in Sunoco Modified Feature; Douton Takes Limited Sportsman Extra-Distance Race; Gelinas, Materas, McDermott and Field among Thompson Winners’

Garbo and Vitelli share Legends Cars winner’s circle Churchill wins Bandolero feature; Yagmin, Zaikarite and Boyle also take victories

Waterford, CT  — Waterford Speedbowl was in action Wednesday evening for a five-event program plus the completion of the suspended Legends Cars race from May 18. In the regularly scheduled 20-lap Legends Cars race, it was Dave Garbo Jr. of Stonington taking down his first checkered flag of the season. The Bandolero feature had another first time winner on the season, Jordan Churchill of Lisbon. In the Super X-Car race champion John Yagmin returned to Victory Lane and Pete Zaikarite of Niantic was the X-Car race winner. In the held-over Legends Cars feature, the final 13-laps were run with Alessandro Vitelli of Woodbridge taking the checkered flag. Jim Boyle of East Windsor bested a boisterous Super X-Car field in the Wacky Tollbooth race.

In the regularly scheduled 20-lap Legends Cars feature race, Dennis Pantani led from the drop of the green flag. Two early caution periods slowed the pace, as the field had trouble getting going over the opening laps. George Whitney and Nicholas Lascuola were eliminated after contact with the frontstretch wall knocked them out of the race. On the restart, a lap could no be completed before Giovanni Giarratana and Angelo Belsito became hooked together and tangled into the turn four tire barrier.

Garbo took over the race lead with a thrilling three-wide maneuver down the backchute following the restart. Once in the lead Garbo had to hold back a host of competitors in an entertaining race. Nick Ladyga moved into second position and the competitors singled out behind as they jockeyed for the top-ten positions over the first half of the race. Battles were found all over the speedway, with the best for tenth position as Kevin Nowak, Jason Palmer and Shaun Buffington were among those mixing it up.

[Photo Gallery] by Nicholas Teto

Continue reading ‘Garbo and Vitelli share Legends Cars winner’s circle Churchill wins Bandolero feature; Yagmin, Zaikarite and Boyle also take victories’

Speedbowl Ready for Four events in Five Days

ISMA Supermodifieds and Memorial Day Madness events headline holiday weekend

Waterford, CT — Waterford Speedbowl is prepared for a blockbuster week, hosting four events over five days beginning Wednesday. Affordable family fun is a common theme, beginning with this week’s Wild ‘n Wacky Wednesday program. Friday’s Show and Go at the ‘Bowl offers free grandstands admission, then a pair of annual favorites returns over the Memorial Day holiday weekend on Saturday and Sunday – the ISMA Supermodifieds and Memorial Day Madness.

Fans will get a bonus at this week’s Wild ‘n Wacky Wednesday. In addition to a five-event program which is highlighted by a 20-lap Legends Cars feature and Wacky Race for the Super X-Cars, the final 13 laps of the suspended Legends Cars race from May 18 will be completed. All the action gets started at 7:00pm and adult admission is just $7.00 for the night with all youth admitted absolutely free.

Friday evening offers a night of spectator drag racing. Almost every motor vehicle imaginable is eligible to participate in 100 foot drag race competitions on the Speedbowl’s race surface for just a $25.00 entry fee. Witness everything from street rods, hot rods, muscle cars, street cars and trucks to everything in between competing on the track or on display behind the grandstands in the free car cruise show. Test and tune for the drags begins at 5:30pm with the elimination rounds following during the evening. Grandstands admission is absolutely free for all ages.

Continue reading ‘Speedbowl Ready for Four events in Five Days’

Valenti Modified Racing Series Ready to Resume at Twin State

Canaan, NH — Their season started seven weeks ago. Only two races have been contested, the last almost a month ago. The drivers, race teams and officials of the Valenti Modified Racing Series are eager to get back to work and resume the 2011 season and that they will, Saturday night, May 28, at Twin State Speedway, Claremont, NH.

A strong field of competitors is expected to enter the Memorial Day weekend program at the famed New Hampshire speedway.

Leading the list of expected entries is defending champion Jon McKennedy, of E, Chelmsford, (MA), former series champions, Dwight Jarvis, Ascutney, (VT), Chris Pasteryak, Lisbon, (CT), all-time winner and three-time series champion, Kirk Alexander, W. Swanzey, (NH), and recent Monadnock Speedway winner Les Hinckley, Windsor Locks (CT).

Additionally, drivers from all over the northeast are expected. Many with roots at the Twin State track including Claremont’s Sean Bodreau, Canaan’s Jack Bateman, Charlestown’s Mark McClay, Swanzey’s Rob Goodenough, and Ascutney, Vermont’s Joey Jarvis. Jarvis will be making his first start of the season.

Continue reading ‘Valenti Modified Racing Series Ready to Resume at Twin State’

INDYCAR Drivers Pass New England 101

Loudon, NH — Fresh off their qualifying run for the 100th Indianapolis 500, three IZOD IndyCar drivers made a quick pit stop in Boston, Mass., for a crash course in all things New England.

IZOD Indycar Series point leader, Will Power, along with top female racer, Simona De Silvestro and British motorsports sensation Justin Wilson joined NHMS executive vice president and general manager Jerry Gappens at The Fours Restaurant for a luncheon and question-and- answer session.

“Three of the best INDYCAR drivers were able to make the trip today after a busy qualifying weekend for the Indy 500,” said Gappens. “All three will be part of one of the most anticipated events this season bringing the fastest racing on four wheels back to NHMS, during the Aug. 14 INDYCAR 225.”

In preparation for the series first visit back to New England in 13 years, Gappens gave the drivers a tune up in New England culture and even demonstrated how to eat a lobster, one of the region’s most notable traditions.

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Two Big Nights at Thompson Int’l Speedway This Week

Thompson, CT — High speed, high tech competitive NASCAR racing to demolition and destruction are on this week’s menu at the Thompson International Speedway. Thursday Night Thompson Thunder with NASCAR Whelen All-American Series racing is the Thursday night attraction. Sunday night the track changes gears and presents the annual Memorial Day weekend Eve of Destruction.

Thursday night’s racing spotlight will be on the XTRA/MART Limited Sportsman division. Race teams in this division will compete in their longest race of the season. This 40-lap dash is the race of the season for the XTRA/MART Limited Sportsman. The extra money and the prestige of winning this event is an accomplishment that stays with a driver and his team all season long. A similar extra distance race is slated for the Sunoco Modifieds, Super Late Models, Thompson Modifieds, Late Models and Monster Minis during the 2011 racing season. Grandstands open at 4 PM and races start at 6:15 PM.

Sunday night’s Eve of Destruction is a complete change of pace as the focus becomes amazing stunts, thrills, spills, and total destruction. The annual Eve of Destruction has become a showcase for modern day gladiators who are amazing performers. The Human Cannonball, David Smith, Jr., flies higher than any other human after being shot from a huge cannon. Justin Hoyer, a 2010 X Games Gold Medalist, will perform his amazing freestyle snowmobile back flip, “Crash” Moreau and Chris Marino will perform death defying stunts and car crashes, high-flying riders take to the skies on their street bikes and Monster Trucks, “Viper” and “Bad Habit” will also lift off as they jump, race and crush. Jet powered vehicles, demolition derbies for both full-size and four cylinder cars and the incredible Trailer Trash race will all lead into a huge fireworks display.

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Penalties Annonuced from May 20th NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Program at Stafford Motor Speedway

Stafford Springs, CT — Stafford Motor Speedway has announced the following penalties following the running of the May 20 NASCAR Whelen All-American Series feature events.

Woody Pitkat, driver of the No. 88 Late Model, and Ryan Posocco, driver of the No. 48 Late Model, have been penalized for a rules violation committed this past Friday at Stafford Motor Speedway.

Both Pitkat and Posocco have been penalized from their respective first and second place finishes to the 14th and 15th place finishing positions for violating rules 20-12.3 A (Changes in shock absorber force must not be made by the position of the shock absorber shaft, only by the velocity of the shaft through the compression and rebound stroke); 20-12.3 P (Suspension travel must not be limited by the shock absorber and/or components, or shock absorber mounting location); & 20-12.3 T (Quick disconnect shock absorber mounts will not be permitted. The shock absorber must be attached with positive nut and bolt mounting fasteners. Adjustable shock absorber mounts of any type will not be permitted. Shock absorbers must be mounted on the car with the gas reservoir to the top. Shock absorber eyelets of different length will be permitted but must not limit the travel of the chassis) of the 2011 NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Late Model rulebook.

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News & Notes: Pennink Poised To Win

Points leader looking for first win after two runner-ups

Daytona Beach, FL — After a fourth-place finish in the 2009 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour final standings, Rowan Pennink appeared poised to contend for the championship in 2010. While Pennink was able to earn his first career victory a year ago, the title chase did not materialize.

In 2011, however, Pennink is off on the right foot. Although the season is just two races deep, Pennink has a 20-point advantage on the field in the season standings. He was runner-up to Ted Christopher in the opener at Thompson International Speedway and followed that by a second-place effort to Bobby Santos the last time out at Stafford Motor Speedway. Now in his fifth season, those were his first runner-up finishes, and also his best career efforts at the two Connecticut ovals.

Pennink, from Huntingdon Valley, Pa., received a boost in the standings when Christopher was penalized 50 points following the Thompson opener, but those around the garage have noticed that Pennink and his family-owned team have stepped things up this season, including the defending Whelen Modified Tour champion.

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Astle Dominates 66th Anniversary Pro Stock Main; Thompson Breaks Through in the Late Models, While Cavallaro and Axon Repeat on Tyson Foods Night

Seekonk, MA — Reigning Pro Stock king Fred Astle, Jr. of Westport broke into the win column on the new season with a convincing win in the laps-added run celebrating Seekonk Speedway’s 66th anniversary. The track had opened in May of 1946. In addition to the added laps, was some added prize money, brought about by the Pro Stock feature’s rainout two weeks earlier.

Astle began the feature in the seventh slot, and worked his way slowly and carefully to the front, not arriving into the lead until the halfway point, lap 33. But from the moment he surged into the lead, the afterburners came on and Flyin’ Freddie Astle was in his element. Late in the race he had better than a half-lap lead over his nearest competitor. It wasn’t until a lap 64 spin brought out the caution that a following car was anywhere near the rocketing number 30. Over the final 2 laps, Tom Scully, Jr. of Saunderstown, RI, pursued the streaking Astle to no avail. He crossed the line .627 seconds behind the winner. Rounding out the top 5 were Somerset driver Kyle Casper, Rehoboth’s Dave Darling, the current points leader, and Dick Houlihan of Bridgewater.

Bobby Tripp of Westport, winner of his previous three qualifiers, led off at the pole with Jake Vanada of Berkley on the outside. Kyle Casper and Houlihan made up the second row with Tom Scully, Sr. and Tom Scully, Jr. in the row behind. Astle and Taunton driver Ken Spencer followed.

Continue reading ‘Astle Dominates 66th Anniversary Pro Stock Main; Thompson Breaks Through in the Late Models, While Cavallaro and Axon Repeat on Tyson Foods Night’

Rocco goes back-to-back with SK Modified® win; Flannery takes first career Late Model race; Stone, Colvin, French and Downing other winners on the night

Waterford, CT — Waterford Speedbowl returned to racing action with ideal spring conditions overhead Saturday evening. Six races were completed on the night, with five NASCAR Whelen All-American Series events recorded. Wallingford’s Keith Rocco overcame early race woes before rallying over the final laps to claim his second consecutive SK Modified® victory. Anthony Flannery of East Hampton was a first time winner in the Bob Valenti Auto Mall Late Model division, Al Stone of New Haven returned to Victory Lane in the Street Stocks, Glenn Colvin of Clinton was the Mini Stock feature winner and Paul French of Andover won the debut event for the SK Light Modifieds. Ken Downing III of Branford was the Super X-Car winner.

Rob Janovic started the 35-lap SK Modified® feature outside the front row, and powered by pole sitter Glenn Pressel in the outside lane just two laps into the race. The field singled out behind Janovic with Pressel, Tucker Reynolds, Ron Yuhas and Tom Abele as the early top-five.

Rocco was on the move, using the outside lane to advance his position into the top-five by the time the race was just 10-laps old. Caution flew a lap later when Nichole Morgillo made slight contact into the tire barrier in turn four on lap-11.

Continue reading ‘Rocco goes back-to-back with SK Modified® win; Flannery takes first career Late Model race; Stone, Colvin, French and Downing other winners on the night’

Vintage Celebration Closes with Awards

Loudon, NH — The checkered flag has waved on New Hampshire Motor Speedway’s 21st Annual Vintage Racing Celebration, wrapping up five straight days of racing.

Hundreds of vintage cars and motorcycles raced through the rain and took advantage of late week dryness on the speedway’s 1.058-mile and 1.6-mile road course throughout the week for both bragging rights and a few trophies.

Frank Camillieri of Chester, N.H., claimed the Bryar Cup yesterday. This is Camilleri’s 12th consecutive year coming to “The Magic Mile.”

“This event is so close to home, it really is the only event I come to,” said Camilleri. “It’s a lot of fun though, probably more fun than an old guy should be having.”

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Family Fun Highlights Vintage Weekend

Loudon, NH — The sun is finally shining at New Hampshire Motor Speedway as the 21st Annual Vintage Racing Celebration continues with fun for the entire family.

Beginning today, thousands of classic car enthusiasts will descend on “The Magic Mile” for the Classic and Custom Car Show. The show will feature numerous hot rods, custom cars, street rods and tuners.

The weekend will also feature two bands both Saturday and Sunday. On Saturday, fans can see DBLDN (Double Down), a rock band from southern, Vt. Double Down covers songs from bands like Godsmack, Alice in Chains, Pearl Jam, Stone Temple Pilots, Nirvana, Buck Cherry, Theory of a Dead Man and AC/DC. The band will entertain fans from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. in the hospitality courtyard area.

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Christopher, Pitkat, Barrett, Thibeault & Casagrande Score Whelen Event Night Feature Victories at Stafford Speedway

Stafford Springs, CT — Stafford Speedway was back on track with a 5-division NASCAR Whelen All-American Series event as part of Whelen Event Night on Friday, May 20th. Ted Christopher picked up his second consecutive win of the 2011 season in the 40-lap SK Modified® feature event, Woody Pitkat picked up his first win of 2011 in the 30-lap Late Model feature, Tommy Barrett, Jr. was the winner of the 20-lap SK Light Modified feature for the second consecutive week, Shawn Thibeault won his first race of the year in the 20-lap Limited Late Model feature, and Kyle Casagrande picked up his second feature victory of the year in the 15-lap DARE Stock feature.

In the 40-lap SK Modified® feature event, Curt Brainard took the early race lead with Eric Berndt, Mark Bakaj, Todd Owen, and Dan Avery behind him. With 5 laps complete, Brad Hietala spun in the middle of turns 3+4 and Brian Sullivan climbed up and over Hietala’s car to bring the caution out.

Berndt took the lead on the restart as Brainard fell back to fourth with Owen and Christopher also getting by on the restart. Owen moved to the lead on lap-7 with Christopher following him by Berndt. Frank Ruocco was now up to fourth behind Berndt with Avery continuing to run in fifth place.

[Photo Gallery] by Nicholas Teto

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Dan Avery Riding High in Stafford’s SK Modified® Division in 2011

Stafford Springs, CT — After taking a hiatus from racing, Dan Avery returned to SK Modified® competition last year at Stafford and he finished the season in 7th place in points. The 2011 season has seen Avery and the #10 Budweiser team establish themselves as one of the division front runners with top-3 finishes in each of the first three races. Avery is currently sitting third in the SK Modified® points standings, only 8 points behind leader Ryan Preece.

“We’re happy with the consistency we’ve showed so far this year,” said Avery. “We still need to step our game up a little to beat the guys like Ryan Preece, Keith Rocco, and Ted Christopher, but we’re getting the car a little better every week. We’ve been a little tight in the turns, so each week we’re getting the car a little bit looser, but we don’t want to make the car too loose. Right now we’re real close, it’s a fine line. I think that if we can get another tenth of a second out of the car, we’ll be right there with those guys racing for wins. We’ve made a couple more changes to the car for this week, so we’ll see how that works out for us.”

In addition to sponsorship from Budweiser through Hartford Distributors, Avery also carries sponsorship from Trantolo & Trantolo, Picci Plumbing & Heating, and National Industrial Supply. While Avery has won in the SK Modified® division at Stafford previously, it has been nearly 20 years since he visited victory lane behind the wheel of an SK Modified® car. Avery was part of the driver crop during the inaugural season of SK Modified® competition all the way back in 1982 and he won 2 of the first three races the division ever ran at Stafford. With how the team is running this year, Avery feels like his third career SK Modified® victory is just around the corner.

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Mike Stefanik Looks to Get Back to Victory Lane in TSI Harley-Davidson 125 at Stafford Speedway

Stafford Springs, CT — With the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour heading back to Stafford on May 27th for the 21st Annual TSI Harley-Davidson 125, one driver who will be looking to knock the door down to victory lane is Mike Stefanik. Stefanik is the Tour’s all-time winningest driver with 70 career victories, but he hasn’t won on the Tour since Martinsville in 2009. Stefanik heads into the TSI Harley-Davidson 125 with two top-5 finishes in each of the first two races of the 2011 season, but he says his Diversified Metals team are still searching for speed in his #16 machine.

“We’re struggling right now,” said Stefanik. “We’re just not quite firing on all 8 cylinders right now. It seems like our car is good on the shorter runs, 20 or 30 laps, but once we get to a run with 40 or more laps, the car isn’t good. To win on the Tour, you need to have all of your ducks in a row and right now we need to get a couple of our ducks back in that row. We’re working hard and we’ll get it straightened out, we always do. The top-5’s are nice, but we want to win races. It’s a short schedule and if you want to win the championship, you have to win races. Racing isn’t as easy as it looks and right now we’re having a tough time getting towards the front once we get into the top-5.”

Perhaps the best remedy for Stefanik’s woes is a return to Stafford. Of his 70 career victories, 20 of them have come at Stafford. While Stefanik hasn’t won at Stafford since the 2008 Fall Final, his worst finish in the four Stafford races in 2010 was a 7th and he finished 5th in the CARQUEST Tech-Net Spring Sizzler in April.

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CARQUEST Champions for Charities Driver Spotlight: Mike Stefanik

Stafford Springs, CT — The CARQUEST Extreme Tuesday Champions for Charities Event at Stafford Motor Speedway scheduled for June 28th is building in momentum and excitement as the drivers gear up to raise funds for their respective charities. The impressive field of open wheeled division champion drivers represents over 50 championships among 14 drivers. This week’s driver spotlight falls on Mike Stefanik, 7-time Whelen Modified Tour Champion, who will be racing to help support Connecticut chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

The National MS Society is comprised of passionate individuals who want to free the world of multiple sclerosis. The Society’s mission is to mobilize people and resources to drive research for a cure and to address the challenges of everyone affected by MS.

“Right now, we’re working on putting together our fund raising effort,” said Stefanik. “We got a late start on the fundraising, but we have some irons in the fire right now and I’m hoping to have a successful campaign and raise some money for a great cause with the MS Society.”

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Part Race, Part Reunion: Road Course Days

Loudon, NH — The green flag has dropped on the New Hampshire Motor Speedway’s 21st Annual Vintage Racing Celebration’s Road Course days, which will run today through Sunday.

This celebration of racing history brings together vintage car enthusiasts from all over the region, including Dublin, N.H., native Dan Scully.

Scully has been racing his 1959 Volvo 544, at “The Magic Mile’s” Vintage Racing Celebration since 1994.

“This is my home track, I love coming here,” he said. “This weekend is one of my favorites, the culture is so different here than at any other events, because you have the car guys and motorcycle guys running throughout the day.”

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Larry Pfitzenmaier Awarded Bahre Cup

Loudon, NH — Diehard vintage enthusiast Larry Pfitzenmaier claimed the New Hampshire Motor Speedway Bahre Cup yesterday, during the Oval Days final event.

Pfitzenmaier, who hails from outside of Phoenix, Ariz., has driven to every Vintage Celebration since the event began 21 years ago. He has logged a total of 117,810 miles to this date, driving from his house to the track.

“This is a pretty special event,” said Pfitzenmaier. “I never expected to be holding one of these trophies in my hand. We have come a long way from home,” he said. “It is exactly 2,805 miles from my driveway to my garage at NHMS.”

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Ken Schrader Welcomes Vintage Racers

Loudon, NH — Despite the rain and chilly temperatures, diehard vintage racers listened to veteran NASCAR driver Ken Schrader share stories of his racing past, during the Grand Marshal barbeque last night.

Schrader began his racing career on local dirt tracks throughout the Midwest, racing anything he could. He boasts 640 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts and three USAC championships.

He served as the honorary Grand Marshal for the 21st Annual Vintage Racing Celebration, walking around the garage and visiting with fans who share his passion for grassroots racing.

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May 2011
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