Brockton, MA — A scant 11 points separate the top three drivers as the Northeastern Midget Association makes its annual visit to Seekonk Speedway’s D. Anthony Venditti Memorial this weekend. The DAV is among the sweetest of plums for NEMA competitors.
Randy Cabral, with a win and a second earlier this year at “the cement palace,” leads Greg Stoehr by just eight points and defending champion Russ Stoehr by 11. Russ Stoehr is coming off a victory at Waterford two weeks back.
Traditional foes Bertrand Racing and the Dumo’s Desire team, separated by 11 points, are once again battling for the owners’ crown.
The NEMA Lites are on the DAV agenda as well. Seekonk has become home base for the increasing popular division. NEMA will qualify on Saturday for Sunday’s feature. All the Lites action will be on Saturday.
The consistency of Cabral’s Bertrand team and Greg Stoehr’s #26b operation has been noteworthy, each with seven podium finishes this year. Both hope to rebound from subpar efforts at Waterford. Russ Stoehr reversed a trend of bad luck with his Waterford win, a broken throttle spring and a suspension part among the maladies that plagued the Dumo’s Desire team.
All seven 2011 winners – Jeff Abold, Todd Bertrand, Keith Botelho, Mike Horn in addition to Cabral and the Stoehr brothers – are expected. It is, in fact, difficult to look past Abold and the Seymour family, so impressive winning a third-straight “Louie” last month at Seekonk.
Still, it’s difficult to find a Midget competitor without hard-earned knowledge of Seekonk, part of the NEMA family since 1953. Laps in the low and middle 11 seconds bracket (100 mph plus) are standard. There is no relaxing at the ‘Konk.’
Anthony Nocella, another Seymour driver who was fourth at “The Louie,” is another contender on a list that includes veteran Joey Payne Jr., now driving the Breault #44, Jeremy Frankoski, ageless Jeff Horn, Chris Leonard, Barry Kittredge, Matt O’Brien, B.J. MacDonald, Chris deRitis, John Zych and Paul Scally.
The busy Nocella, based on past efforts, probably rates the favorite in the Lites race as well. The Lites, however, have had eight different winners this season – Ryan and Paul Bigelow, Russ Wood Jr., Paul Luggelle, Seth Carlson, Andy Barrows and David Moniz joining Nocella. Among those looking to join the list – Carl Medeiros, Randy Cabral, Bethany Stoehr and Lanson Fornoro.
Sources: Pete Zanardi/NEMA PR