Stafford, CT – Taking command with nine laps remaining, Mike Horn went on to win the 30-lap Northeastern Midget Association feature at Stafford Motor Speedway’s CarQuest Super Saturday. It was the second career win for the second generation driver.
Horn, who started fifth, bested Erica Santos (Breault 44) on the third and final restart. The winning pass actually resulted in the third yellow. Sitting second since lap 19, Horn went by the only other leader, a sputtering Anthony Marvuglio (Bordeau 38), in turn three.
Starting second, Marvuglio had survived a couple of restarts and had a commanding lead until fuel problems (he was running out) slowed him with 11 remaining. Horn caught and passed him. There was, however, contact resulting in Marvuglio spinning up the track and collecting third and fourth-place runners Randy Cabral and Russ Stoehr.
[Photo Gallery] by Crystal Snape
Santos, in her first Midget ride in two years was second. Jim Miller (Miller 3m) won a battle with John Zych Jr. (Zych 9) for third with Greg Stoehr (Stoehr 26b) fifth.
Closing on the slowing Marvuglio, Horn went to the outside. “At the speed he was going, I thought I absolutely had him cleared by plenty,” he said. After Horn moved back into the low groove, Marvuglio appeared to surge forward and make contact.
It was the second straight heartbreaking result for Marvuglio who was robbed of victory at Waterford Speedbowl earlier this year by a flat tire. He took the lead with a daring move into three on lap one and was quickly in a dominating position, his 17.582 on lap five the fastest of the race.
Marvuglio pointed to many cautions before the initial green (“somebody oiled the track”) was the real culprit. Calling it “a racing deal,” he “knew they were coming” after the engine started sputtering and “was trying to stay low.” Horn, he continued “came down and we clipped a little bit. We were racing hard.”
Horn was “absolutely worried” about Santos on the final restart. “She is fast and has a lot more experience on this track than I do,” she explained. “Oh, I would have loved to beat Mike, but I’m happy with the second,” said Santos who was subbing for Joey Payne Jr.
Third was a comeback for Miller. Running second, he made a daring inside move on Marvuglio on the second restart. “I just went for it. Sometimes it sticks and sometimes it doesn’t,” said Miller who fought the car down the backstretch, falling back into the field. It was at that point that Horn took second.
RESULTS: 1. Mike Horn, 2. Erica Santos, 3. Jim Miller, 4. John Zych Jr., 5. Greg Stoehr, 6. Paul Scally, 7. Lee Bundy, 8. Andy Barrows, 9. Bethany Stoehr, 10. Anthony Marvuglio, 11. Randy Cabral, 12. Russ Stoehr, 13. Anthony Nocella, 14. Brandon Igo, 15. Jim Santa Maria, 16. Todd Bertrand, 17. Ryan Preece, 18. Seth Carlson, 19. Brian Cleveland, 20. Frank Swan, 21. Todd Bertrand, 22. Doug Cleveland, 23. Glen Cabral.
Sources: Pete Zanardi/NEMA PR