Rowan Pennink, of Huntingdon Valley, PA., knew he was looking at a possible 50-lap race as brewing storms and winds circled the Seekonk (MA) Speedway, Saturday afternoon, DAV Fall Classic. Turns out the Roscoe Racing Team made the right call as a heavy downpour on lap 53 forced cancellation of the remaining laps, giving Pennink the win in the Valenti Modified Racing Series event, honoring the late race track owner D.Anthony Venditti. Pennink becomes the ninth different winner of the Fall event.
Pennink’s win, his sixth VMRS victory, is his first Seekonk victory, his second victory this season, and he clipped 20 points off Jon McKennedy’s point lead as the two battle it out for the series championship with two races remaining. Pennink entered the day 57-points behind McKennedy. The points now show McKennedy with 530 and Pennink with 493
Pennink started on the pole and led the entire race receiving pressure early on from Geoff Gernhard, of Salem, CT., Steven Masse, of Bellingham, MA., local driver Todd Annarummo, of Swansea, MA., and again from Masse laps 50-53 when the fifth caution flag was displayed then followed by a red flag when the skies opened to end the event. With 53 laps completed the race by rule is officially completed.
[Photo Gallery] by Nicholas Teto
“I’ll take it rain or shine. They are not easy to get. Really happy to get the win.” said Pennink.“The skies were darkening when we hit the race track to take the green and we kind of figured it would be about a 50 lap race,” He added, “it was our strategy to stay out front. There were a couple of cars behind me that were looking strong. We protected the bottom and if they wanted to pass it was going to be the hard way on the outside. Bob Katon spotted for me and did a great job having me protect the bottom. It worked out for us.”
The rains ended what was shaping up to be another classic finish at the famed oval. Masse and Annarummo were strong with a hard charging Les Hinckley, of Windsor Locks, CT., who started 13th and running fourth at lap 53, methodically working his way to the front. Hinckley returned to competition for the first time since July 26.
Masse finished second, Annarummo third, Hinckley fourth, and Gerhard fifth. Sixth through tenth were; rookie Mark Bakaj, of Lebanon, CT., Max Zachem, of Preston, CT., Norm Wrenn, of Nashua NH., Tim Jordan, of Plainfield, CT., and Jon McKennedy, of E.Chelmsford, MA.
33 race teams entered the annual event. 24 cars started the race with 18 on the lead lap on lap 53.
Next Event: Saturday, October 13, at Thompson (CT) Speedway.
Seekonk (MA) Speedway
Distance: 100 laps
Time of Race: 34:29:905
Margin of Victory: 0.150
Best Lap Time: 12.228
Best Speed: 98.037 (V. Annarummo)
Lead Changes: 0
Lap Leaders: Pennink (1-53)
Order of Finish: (1) Pennink (2) Masse (3) T.Annarummo (4) Hinckley (5) Gernhard (6) Bakaj (7) Zachem (8) Wrenn (9) Jordan (10) McKennedy (11) Mechalides (12) Holdridge (13) Goodenough (14) Dolan (15) D. Jarvis (16) Savary (17) Barnett, (18) Barrett (19) V. Annarummo (20) Berghman 21(Ferreira) (22) J. Jarvis (23) Doucette (24) Oliviera
Sources: John Spence, Sr./VMRS PR