Archive for January, 2013

Kris Fluckiger Ready to Challenge for DARE Stock Title in 2013 at Stafford Speedway

Stafford Springs, CT — With the 2013 season on the horizon at Stafford Motor Speedway, Enfield native Kris Fluckiger is ready to count himself among the challengers for the 2013 DARE Stock track title. In only his second season of competition at SMS, Fluckiger recorded his first victory to go along with 12 top-5 and 16 top-10 finishes to end the season in fourth place in the points standings. With a victory in the season ending non-points Paradiso-Muska DARE Stock Shoot-Out, Fluckiger is ready to carry that momentum into 2013.

“I’d like to think we can be contenders for the championship this season,” said Fluckiger. “That was our plan last season, but we were playing catch up for most of the year.”

One of the main factors in Fluckiger having to play catch up was a faulty transmission that Fluckiger and his team misdiagnosed as a handling issue for the majority of the 2012 season.

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Josh Wood Ready To Carry Momentum Of Rookie Season Over To 2013 Season At Stafford Speedway

Stafford Springs, CT — For Palmer, MA native Josh Wood, his rookie season in Stafford’s Limited Late Model division was nearly the perfect season. Wood won 6 out of the first 8 feature events and he was locked in a season long duel with Cory Casagrande for the track championship. Wood eventually came up 12 points short of Casagrande in the chase for the championship, but he is looking to take the momentum he built up during his rookie season and carry that over to the 2013 season and once again be a championship contender with his #51 R.A.D. Automachine Chevrolet.

“We certainly hope we can do it again, but we’re not going to count on it,” said Wood. “Hopefully we can get ourselves a couple of wins and we’ll hope for the best. I’d like to think we’re going to be contenders again for the championship, but no matter if we are or aren’t in contention, we’re still going to have a lot of fun this year.”

For Wood, the 2012 season was a season of two halves. The first half of the year saw Wood accumulate all 6 of his wins, while his best finish of the second half of the year was second. Wood’s main championship rival, Cory Casagrande, won 5 of the final 7 races to leapfrong Wood in the points standings and take home the championship. Despite finishing second behind Casagrande, Wood says he and his team weren’t disappointed at all in their finish and that they will look to have two good halves during 2013.

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Spafco Race Chassis & Parts Returning as Sponsor Stafford Speedway Rookie of the Year Title

Stafford Springs, CT — Stafford Motor Speedway has announced that Spafco Race Chassis and Parts of Preston, CT will return for a second consecutive season to be the presenting sponsor of Stafford Motor Speedway’s Rookie of the Year awards for the 2013 season. Spafco Race Chassis and Parts will contribute $700 to the SK Modified® Rookie of the Year, and $500 to the Late Model, SK Light Modified, and Limited Late Model Rookies of the Year for a total of $2,200 in awards.

“Last year was our first time as a presenting sponsor at Stafford, and it was a great experience for us,” said Ken Barry, owner of Spafco Race Chassis. “It was nice for us to be able to give something back to the racers and we had a lot of fun throughout the season keeping track of the rookie standings from week to week. We’re happy to be the presenting sponsor of the Rookie of the Year awards again, and we’re looking forward to once again keeping track of the rookie points standing from week to week.”

With 27 rookie drivers signed up for the 2013 season at Stafford, there should be plenty of excitement as the rookie competitors chase after the SPAFCO Rookie of the Year bonus. Leading the way are Stafford’s modified divisions, with 7 drivers signed up for rookie status in the SK Modified® division, and 11 drivers signed up for the SK Light division. The SK Modified® division’s SPAFCO rookie class has several newcomers in Joe Williams, who has driven dirt modifieds for the past 12 years, and Rit Dulac, who has driven ProStocks, Late Models, Trucks, and K & N East Series cars in his career. The SK Modified® rookie class also includes four drivers who are moving up from the SK Light division; Dylan Kopec, who won 8 SK Light features last year, Joey Cipriano, who accumulated 7 wins in SK Light competition from 2010-2011, defending SK Light track champion Zach Aszklar will make the move up, and David Webb, who has 3 career SK Light wins.

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2013 ISMA Schedule Includes 15 Race Events at 10 Different Race Tracks; Sunset Speedway Added as New Venue

Oswego, NY (January 23, 2013) – While the northeast is locked in a bitter cold winter, it’s a great time to look toward the 2013 racing series as a warm-up. The 2013 ISMA schedule has been finalized with some exciting new additions. The ISMA winged series will compete in 15 race events at 10 different speedways in the Northeast and Canada. And, one of those Canadian visits includes a new venue, Sunset Speedway in Innisfil, Ontario, which is approximately 40 miles north of Toronto.

ISMA’s opener will be at the home of the supermodifieds, the Oswego Speedway (NY), which in 2013 will host four big events called the Steel Palace ISMA SuperSeries. Round 1 is May 4th. Rounds 2 – 4 come on June 8th, July 13th (King of Wings) and on August 31st of Classic weekend.

ISMA’s first trip to Canada is a return to Autodrome Chaudiere in Vallee Jonction, Quebec for a two-day event on June 21 and 22. Johnny Benson won the inaugural race at that fast semi-banked oval in 2011. Mike Lichty, Benson’s teammate and Rob Summers were on the podium for that 75-lapper. Both Friday and Saturday features will again be 75 laps in length.

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PASS North to be Well Represented by Young New Englanders at Florida Winter Meltdown

NAPLES, ME — There’s something about Florida in February that’s been attracting the best drivers in racing for the better part of a century. From the “North Turn” at Daytona’s world famous beach to short tracks stretching from the Panhandle to Miami, racers have flocked to the Sunshine State every winter. And 2013 will be no different. Florida’s “big race” season is set to begin in just over a week as some of the best of the Pro All Stars Series (PASS) make the trek down to Auburndale Speedway for the Winter Meltdown. The first PASS National Series race of the year is attracting Super Late Model drivers from all over North America in the hopes of wrestling the checkered flag away from the top short track hot shoes in Florida.

PASS North will be represented well by a trio of young drivers joining two-time PASS National Series Champion Ben Rowe in making the long trip down South. D.J. Shaw, Kyle Desousza, and Joey Doiron have all found success racing in New England’s top short track series. Shaw is coming off a successful return to the PASS North Series in 2012 that saw him score two wins and finish third in points. Evidence that the Precision JLM/Mulkern Excavating team could be poised for a PASS National Championship this year.

“We’re really looking forward to getting the season started in Florida,” said Shaw. “Auburndale looks like a driver’s track and I’m really anxious to see if we can continue the momentum we ended with last year.”

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Silk Set For Week Of Racing In Florida

 2011 Modified Champ To Compete At Daytona, New Smyrna

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The winters in Connecticut can be long, and the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour offseason even longer, which is why Ron Silk and TS Haulers Racing eagerly anticipate the opportunity to hit the race track in Florida during 2013 Speedweeks.

The 2011 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour champions, Silk and the No. 6 crew will participate in the inaugural UNOH Battle At The Beach on the short track Daytona International Speedway, Feb. 18-19. They’ll follow that up with by participating three nights at the World Series of Stock Car Racing at recently-NASCAR-sanctioned New Smyrna Speedway. 

“We’re racers,” Silk said of the team’s motivation to head to Florida. “It’s been a long time since the [2012 season finale] World Series and we just want to get back on the race track. It’s nice to get away from the weather up here for a few days and get some racing in.”

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Unbuckled: Getting to Know Claude Leclerc

Unbuckled: Getting To Know Claude Leclerc-Driver of the #11 Leclerc Motorsports Chevrolet

 Hometown: Lanoraie, QC

2012 : Finished 12th Overall on the Série ACT Castrol

What are your favorite hobbies in the off-season?

 Snowmobiling. I have been doing that for many years. I first started snowmobiling in 1974. I do not race them though, I just do it for fun!

 What do you do for work?

Now I am retired from my business, but I work for myself in my home garage. I’m a mechanic.

 What is your biggest life accomplishment?

When I won the 300-lap race at Sanair, that was so great for me. But it is a tie with the time I raced at Cayuga Speedway in Ontario for a 250-lap NASCAR North race. I finished third behind Dale Earnhardt and Randy Lajoie, and on the podium Dale gave me a handshake and said I did a very good job. He is a great man. It was a great day for me; I will never forget that.

 Big Plans for 2013?

I would like to race but one of my crewmembers is sick, and two other crewmembers have quit with family problems, so right now I need to find 2-3 new guys. I would like to make all of the Série ACT Castrol season, especially the International 500. I would also like to return to Thunder Road at some point in 2013.

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Tombarello Back On Top At Lee

Second All-American Series Crown in Four Years

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Tommy Tombarello Jr. is enjoying a quick rise in one of short track racing’s fastest cars.

Tombarello, 31, of Haverhill, Mass., won his second small block Supermodifed track championship at Lee (N.H.) USA Speedway in 2012. Because his 2010 title came before the division became Lee’s NASCAR Division I, the 2012 championship is his first in the track’s top NASCAR Whelen All-American Series division.

“I’ve been around my brother-in-law Justin Belfiore’s Supermodifieds since I was 13 or 14,” Tombarello said. “His dad (Jim) builds Belfab Supermodified chassis. I learned these cars inside and out before I ever drove one.

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Devil’s Bowl Speedway Champions to Be Honored Saturday

Speedway announces creation of special annual awards

RUTLAND, VT – More than 230 guests will honor the champions and top stock car drivers from the 2012 NASCAR Whelen All-American Series season at the Devil’s Bowl Speedway Banquet of Champions on Saturday, February 2. The fete will be held at the Holiday Inn Rutland-Killington in Rutland, VT.

Ron Proctor of Charlton, NY and car owners Debbie Eddy and Ron White of Fair Haven, VT will collect their second consecutive championship in the Bond Auto Parts Modified division. J&S Steel Late Model champion Craig Bushey of Fairfax, VT, Renegade champion Robert Gordon of Milton, VT, Bomber champion Josh Masterson of Bristol, VT, and the top drivers from each division will also receive awards.

Masterson will also be honored as the Bomber Rookie of the Year, along with Joey Roberts of Georgia, VT (Modified), Robert Bryant, Jr., of Brooklyn, CT (Late Model), and Robin Cummings of Milton, VT (Renegade). A variety of awards will be given by Five Star Race Car Bodies, Bond Auto Parts, Goodyear Racing Tires, Hoosier Racing Tires, Sunoco Race Fuels, and the University of Northwestern Ohio. A keynote speech will be given by Karl Fredrickson, Editor of Dick Berggren’s Speedway Illustrated magazine, with musical entertainment from popular local band Rick Redington & The Luv.

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Huge, Talent Laden Field Set for NAPA Auto Parts Indoor Auto Racing Weeekend at A.C. Boardwalk Hall, Feb 1 & 2

ATLANTIC CITY, NJ — A massive field of race hungry Three Quarter Midget, 600cc Micro, Slingshot and Champ Kart drivers will be making their way from across the northeast to Atlantic City’s Boardwalk Hall this Friday and Saturday, February 1-2, for NAPA Auto Parts Indoor Racing Weekend.

The 11th running of the marquee event run under the direction of Len Sammons Motorsports Productions is the third and final race of the Fatheadz Eyewear Indoor Series.

Overall, 213 teams are entered among the four divisions of competition; less than half of them will be transferring to the feature races, making the qualifying events intense affairs in their own right.

TQ Midgets and 600 Micros race feature events on both Friday and Saturday with the ultimate prize, the Gamblers Classic the main TQ race on Saturday.

ACT “Tracks by the Facts” Star Speedway

Tracks by the Facts – Star Speedway

Star Speedway in Epping, New Hampshire returns to the American Canadian Tour schedule after a 9 season hiatus. The ¼-mile speedway will host the eighth event of the 2013 ACT US schedule, which will be 150 laps on Saturday, July 6.

· ACT has run a total of 5 events at Star with the first on April 21, 2001 and the most recent on July 26, 2003.

· Cris Michaud won the first ever ACT event at the speedway in 2001.

· Todd Stone claimed the win in the most recent ACT event held at Star in 2003.

· There have been 5 different winners in the 5 events. Michaud and Stone are joined by Jamie Fisher, Patrick Laperle and Scott Dragon.

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Michael Marfeo Jr. Memorial Race at Seekonk Speedway July 13th

SEEKONK, MA —  Seekonk Speedway would like to announce the Michael Marfeo Jr Memorial Race to be held on July 13th featuring the Late Model Division. The race will be a 40 lap late model Race and will be the 2nd leg of the Triple Crown. The Speedway would like to thank Bob and Jariah Roderick for sponsoring the event honoring Mikey Jr.

Here are some thoughts on Mikey Jr from the mixed Nuts website link…

Mikey was a two year old boy who loved cars, daddy’s tools, rode his tractor around the house, when he heard Arthur on the T.V. he would sit and giggle, always wanted to be with his big sister Peanut, and when we could not find our keys we could count on Mikey playing with them.

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Team Captains Named for Kart Klash III

Four racing champions have been named team captains for the upcoming Kart Klash III: NEMA champion Joey Payne, 3-time VMRS champion Jon McKennedy, 6-time Seekonk Speedway champion Fred Astle, Jr., and reigning ACT champion Wayne Helliwell, Jr. The University of Northwestern Ohio Kart Klash III will be renewed as a part of Racer’s Expo weekend. F1 Boston in Braintree, MA will host go-kart racing on Saturday night, February 9th at 7PM.

Entries are $79 per person and limited to the first 100 drivers.Register via email, reg.kart.racersexpo@gmail.com or by phone – 508-485-5605. Registration is open through February 1st.  Payments to be mailed to The Racers Expo, 500 Boston Post Road West, Marlboro, MA 01752 by 2/1/13.

The field will be divided into 4 weight classes.To establish the four weight classes, all racers must weigh in at the Racers Expo in the Wayland room at the Royal Plaza Hotel from Noon until 3 PM on Sat. Feb. 9th.

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Shawn Solomito Caps Off 2012 Riverhead Raceway NASCAR Modified Championship Sunday at Champions’ Luncheon

RIVERHEAD, NY — Shawn Solomito of Islip was officially crowned 2012 NASCAR Modified champion this past Sunday afternoon at the Senix Creek Inn of Center Moriches where Barbara & Jim Cromarty presented the annual Champions’ Luncheon Sunday afternoon. The Senix Creek Inn was jam packed with race teams and fans who turned out to salute all eight track champions.

After emcee Bob Finan documented Shawn Solomito’s championship season and the events that led to the title on and off the race track, the young champion was greeted with a standing ovation as he strode to the front of the room. Joining him as well were his father and car owner Jerry and his mother Linda. After being presented with the championship hardware from Riverhead Raceway, Shawn was then awarded the perpetual Big Brothers & Big Sisters of Long Island Driver’s Cup, becoming the 12th driver to be feted with this handsome cup.

Going into the 2012 campaign Shawn and his SS Motorsports team dedicated their season to two fallen friends, Keri and ‘Lil Jason Trinca who sadly perished in October of 2011. Shawn’s racecar carried a tribute collage to the Trinca family all season long. After he thanked his parents and his wife Kristy, Shawn also thanked his two racing brothers Jerry Jr. and Timmy as well as team sponsors and crew members. He then added, “I know I had two angels riding with me all season long en route to this championship and I know somewhere in heaven Keri and ‘Lil Jay are smiling down on us”. The 2012 NASCAR Modified championship is the first of Shawn’s career./

[Photo Gallery]

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NEMA Midgets coming to Airborne

The Northeast Midget Association (NEMA) Midgets and their NEMA Lite support division will make their first appearance at Airborne Speedway in 41 years Saturday, August 3.

 The last NEMA visit was July 7, 1971 when Jerry Wall drove the famed “Yellowjacket” No. 5 to victory. The first ever NEMA appearance at Airborne was on July 20. 1968 when Dave Humphrey bested George Monson and Ronnie Evans in a Pascale Offenhauser.

“NEMA is excited about the challenge that Airborne presents,” President Mike Scrivani said. “We are sure our drivers and equipment will be up to the test of another high speed facility. Judging from our performances at Thompson, Stafford and Oswego Speedways last year, Airborne can expect to see some impressive speeds.”

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Shriners are Back for 2013

SEEKONK, MA —  Seekonk Speedway would like to welcome back the RI Shriners back as a sponsor for the races on June 29th. The Clowns will be on hand for the Trike races again this year!

Sources: Seekonk Speedway

Mini Stock Division Gets Devil’s Bowl Speedway Facelift

Five-time winner LaVair leads wide-open championship chase

WEST HAVEN, VT – The grassroots have been replanted at Devil’s Bowl Speedway for the 2013 NASCAR Whelen All-American Series stock car racing season. The entry-level four-cylinder Mini Stock division has undergone a facelift during the winter and is expecting a wide-open championship chase.

Known in previous seasons as the “Bomber” division, the Mini Stock class is the starting point for many local racecar drivers. Cars that compete include Chevrolet Cavaliers, Honda Civics, Dodge Neons, and other American-made and import compact sedans. Modifications allow only for safety advancements and minor, inexpensive handling and mechanical improvements. Racing in the Mini Stock class is often intense with three-wide and even four-wide action sprinkled with metal-crunching crashes and rollovers.

Josh Masterson, 21, came to the division as a rookie in 2012 and departs for the top-tier Late Models as the champion. In his first season in a stock car, the Bristol, VT racer posted an astonishing seven wins en route to sweeping the track championship and Rookie of the Year title. Third-place finisher Ray Germain, Jr., also of Bristol, VT, will move up to the intermediate Renegade class, leaving 2012 runner-up Bobby LaVair of Gabriels, NY as the leading candidate to sit on the Mini Stock throne. Five victories in his No. 5 Denecker Chevrolet-sponsored Mazda Protégé left LaVair second overall; his father Harold and brother Chris were also feature winners during the season.

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Carl Merrill Passes at 88

Carl Merrill, 1924-2013

Alderman Carleton P. Merrill, a lifelong Newton resident, died on Jan 23, 2013. He was 88.

Carleton was elected 13 times to serve as an Aldermen-at-Large from Ward 1 in Newton. His first term was the 1950-1951 term. He then skipped a few years and served 3 terms from 1956 – 1961. In 1962 he became the Veterans Agent for the City and served in that role until 1995 when he retired. Upon retirement he again ran as an Aldermen from Ward 1 and served 8 1/2 terms from 1996 until his death. Carleton graduated from Newton High in 1942 and served in the U.S. Army Air Corps during WW II.

An avid stock car racing fan, Carleton had owned and raced his own car. He was a NASCAR official and had officiated at Norwood, Westborough and Thompson Speedways and had officiated at the Daytona 500 several times. Carleton was also a member of the VFW and American Legion Post 48.

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Nick Lascuola Enters Champion Spark Plugs “Search for a Champion” Sponsorship Contest

Abington, Mass – One of New England’s rising racing stars, Nick Lascuola, has entered the Champion Spark Plugs “Search for a Champion” contest and is hoping to win top prize so he can donate a portion of it to his favorite charity.

Racers enter the contest by submitting a video and Champion Spark Plugs uses fan voting to help determine how they award 2013 sponsorship dollars with the grand prize winner receiving a $50,000 season sponsorship. Nick says if he wins the grand prize he will donate $5,000 of it to a cancer-related charity.

“My grandmother is a cancer survivor,” Nick explained. “She had throat cancer and now has a stoma. She has watched me since I was a baby and she loves my racing. She also still makes the best pasta and meatballs! If I am fortunate enough to win the grand prize we want to donate $5,000 of it to a charity that supports finding a cure for cancer. Anyone who has ever had cancer happen to a family member knows how hard it is. We do a lot of charity work and it’s important that we remember to share what we’re given with others who are less fortunate.”

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NEMA Returns to Airborne Speedway on August 3

The Northeastern Midget Association has added a race at Airborne Speedway in Plattsburgh, NY. The NEMA Midgets and NEMA Lites will visit the 4/10-mile oval on August 3rd.

Ending a four-decade hiatus, this will be the third NEMA event at the facility.  On July 20, 1968, Dave Humphrey won the inaugural race in the #1 Pascale Offy  over George Monsen and Ronnie Evans. NEMA made another appearance on August 7, 1971 with Jerry Wall and his #5 Yellowjacket Chevy V-4 taking the victory over Don Keller and Butch Walsh.

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Former Riverside Park Speedway Modified Competitor Charlie Jones Passes at 71

Charlie Jones, 1941 – 2013

Charles Ernest Jones, 71, lifelong Agawam resident, passed away Wednesday January 23rd at the VA Boston Healthcare in West Roxbury, MA. Born in Ludlow to the late Ernest and Veronica (Carnes) Jones, he attended Agawam Schools.

Charlie served his country honorably in the United States Navy and was employed as a Precision Machinist for various local businesses throughout his career. He was an avid golfer, enjoying all the local courses, and was active over the years in modified racing at several area speedways. If Charlie could swing a golf club from a race car, he would.

Besides his parents, he was predeceased by his sister, Jacquelene Czupta. He is survived by his two children; Charles E. Jones, II of West Springfield and Tammie Gulker-Graham and her husband Darryl and their children, Katie, Christopher and Gare of Florida. He also leaves a niece, Michele Czupta and her fiance Mark Cornelius; two nephews, Jeffrey Czupta and his wife Angela and Erik Czupta and his wife Renee and many great nieces and nephews.

View Guest Book

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Legion Speedway Releases Weekly Schedule, Seeks Stability and Continuity in 2013

WENTWORTH, NH – Co-Promoters Si Allen and Sawn Lawler have announced a 22-event schedule for Legion Speedway this season. The cost savings good news for competitors is that pit admission remains at 2012 levels, no changes in technical specifications or rules are on the horizon and equipment has been acquired to enhance technical inspections. Race fans are sure to appreciate that 2012 admission prices will remain unchanged in2013.

“Our fans and competitors have told us that they really enjoyed the side-by-side racing and close competition they saw in 2012 so we’re not making any major changes for 2013,” speedway owner Allen said. “We’ll just step up the tech a little to make sure that everybody’s playing by the same rules. The track may be banked, but we want to give our competitors a level playing field.”

The track has acquired a new set of car scales, veteran technical inspector Matt Charbonneau will be head of tech and Mike Kondrat will be conducting cubic inch displacement checks.

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PASS Wins Leader Rowe Ready to Heat Things Up at Florida’s Winter Meltdown

NAPLES, ME — When it comes to racing in the Pro All Stars Series (PASS), there’s not much Ben Rowe hasn’t done. He learned his trade while following his legendary dad, Mike Rowe, around the bullrings of New England and Canada and has been with the series since its inception in 2001. Since then, Ben has gone on to race in every single PASS North race that has ever been contested. He’s won more PASS Super Late Model races than any other driver, over 40 victories between PASS North and PASS South. He has taken a total of seven PASS championships…four in PASS North, two PASS National Championships, and even a PASS South Championship in 2009. Again, a feat that surpasses all drivers. And, if that isn’t enough, he’s a back-to-back winner of short track racing’s biggest single day event, the TD Bank 250 at Oxford Plains Speedway, with wins in 2003 and 2004.

But, 2012 was very atypical for Ben Rowe. He only managed to finish sixth in the final PASS North standings, his lowest points finish ever. And, only had a single win, albeit one of the series biggest races, the PASS 400 at Beech Ridge Motor Speedway. With a career full of checkered flags and trophies behind him, Rowe and his team knew something had to give heading into the 2013 season.

“Last year didn’t go like we hoped it would, so we’ve brought some new guys in and changed some stuff around from last year,” said Rowe. “We’re definitely excited and looking forward to getting started.”

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INFO UPDATED MEMO: Regarding Tom Curley/2013 ACT & Thunder Road

INTRODUCTION

First, I would like to thank you for all of the well wishes I have received from so many concerned about my recent health issues. The many emails, phone calls, text messages, prayers and thoughts have been very much appreciated. I would be remiss if I did not publicly thank Darla who has been with me for every hour of the past three weeks and continues to care for me as I recover.

I wanted to take this opportunity to review for all our ACT and Thunder Road race teams exactly what has been done over the past three months since the 50th Milk Bowl finally closed our season, and to hopefully provide a positive platform for everyone to become excited, positive, and energized about the upcoming race season.

FALL OFF-SEASON

1. QUEBEC ACT CASTROL SERIES:

As some of you know, I spent nearly 6 weeks in the immediate post season negotiating with Quebec promoters after the sale of Autodrome Chaudiere. The potential of having the Quebec teams split into PASS type Late Models and an unsustainable marketing plan, particularly in the Quebec City region, would have changed ACT type Late Model racing on both sides of the border dramatically. Fortunately, the ACT promoters were very supportive, a group of ACT Castrol teams provided tremendous support, and we were able to work out compromises among all parties. We actually have developed an outstanding program for fans, teams and promoters for the coming year. When the entries begin coming out in a few weeks I think teams from both sides of the border will be very happy with 2013 plans.

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Wesley Prucker Becomes Latest Addition to Stafford’s 2013 SK Light Modified SPAFCO Rookie Class

Stafford Springs, CT — Stafford Speedway instituted its SK Light division as a way for younger drivers to develop their skills in an open wheel car before moving onto bigger and more complex open wheel competition, and the SK Light roster has added another young driver to its 2013 SPAFCO rookie class. Stafford native Wesley Prucker will be the newest addition to the SK Light field at SMS and Prucker brings with him a litany of wins and championships to the open wheel ranks.

The 16-year old Prucker began his racing career at age 5, and over the past 11 years, he has raced Quarter Midgets, Half Midgets, and Junior Outlaws in 12 states, from Connecticut all the way out to the west coast and California. While Prucker has over 200 wins and 10 championships to his resume thusfar, the 2013 season will mark his first foray into racing on a half mile track.

“I’m a bit nervous and excited to get started at Stafford,” said Prucker. “I’ve raced against Tommy Barrett, Matt Galko, the Membrinos, Paul Buzel, David Arute, and the Casagrandes, so I’m looking forward to racing with some of those guys again as well as my cousin Shayne Prucker. Stafford is only three miles down the road from the house, so we’ll have a lot less traveling to do to get started racing bigger cars on a bigger track. I think we averaged around 12 races a week and we ran three cars at two tracks for nine years, so one race a week on Friday nights will be a step down for us. Hopefully being able to concentrate on one track and one car will help us to run well this year.”

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George Nocera, Jr. Ready to Tackle Challenge of Rookie Season in Late Model Division at Stafford

Stafford Springs, CT — When the green flag falls on the 2013 season at Stafford Motor Speedway, Plainville native George Nocera, Jr. will try to win SPAFCO Rookie of the Year honors for the second time as he prepares to race in his fourth different division at the Connecticut half-mile track. Nocera began his Stafford career in the DARE Stock division in 2005, and he has also participated in the SK Light and Limited Late Model divisions, twice coming within a few points of winning a track championship. In anticipation of his Late Model debut at the 2013 CARQUEST Tech-Net Spring Sizzler, Nocera says his Ltd. Late Model experience will be a big asset.

“My Limited Late Model experience should help me out a lot,” said Nocera. “I don’t see much difference between the two cars other than a little more horsepower in the Late Model cars and the drivers are different. The biggest challenge for us this year will be pit road, but I think that we can be successful this season. We could use an extra crew member or two, and we could always use an extra sponsor, but I think we have everything we need to be a top-10 car this season.”

When it comes to success at Stafford, Nocera has definitely had his fair share of good times. In his very first season, Nocera won twice in the DARE Stock division before winning again in the season ending non-points Paradiso-Muska Shoot-Out. The 2006 season saw Nocera move to the Limited Late Model division, where he won SAPFCO Rookie of the Year honors while nearly winning the championship. Nocera lost out by 2 points, or one position on the track, to Kevin Gambacorta in the championship chase that year. 2007 saw Nocera move up to the SK Light division and he finished 6th in the points before racing two partial seasons in 2008 and 2009. The 2010 season saw a full-time return to the Ltd. Late Model division and Nocera won 8 races between 2010 and 2011. Nocera nearly won the 2011 Ltd. LM championship, again losing out to Gambacorta by a margin of only 6 points. After sitting out the 2012 season, Nocera is itching to get back on track.

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D.J. Burnham Ready to Challenge for Limited Late Model Championship at Stafford in 2013

Stafford Springs, CT — After winning four races and finishing fifth and third in his first two seasons of Limited Late Model competition at Stafford Motor Speedway, East Hartford native D.J. Burnham is ready to take his game to the next level in 2013. Although Burnham won three times last season, he says that number could have been even higher if not for mechanical issues with his #54 Burnham Motorsports Toyota.

“I think we definitely should have won a couple more races last year,” said Burnham. “We had some electrical issues with the ignition and we broke a lot of stuff on the car when we were running up front. We changed everything that was electrical in the car last year, plugs, wires, distributors, switches, and we found out through process of elimination that it was a $2 ignition switch that was our problem. One night a sway bar bolt broke while we were running up front and I had to fall to the back. I don’t even know how I finished that race, the car was completely sideways in the corners. We found something on the car that worked pretty well towards the end of the year, and we feel like we got all the bugs worked out of the car, so we think we’ll be more prepared for this year.”

With the electrical gremlins behind him, Burnham had a monster final third of the 2012 season, scoring 1 win and 4 second place finishes during the final 6 races. Burnham is looking to take that experience and build on it for the upcoming 2013 season as he chases after the track championship.

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PASS to Award 2013 National Champ with Championship Ring at Season’s End

NAPLES, ME — Pro All Stars Series (PASS) officials announced today that the 2013 PASS National Series Champion will be awarded a one-of-a-kind championship ring. PASS, in association with series supporter Northern Race Tire, will present the newly crowned PASS National Champion with the championship ring following the final race of the season as part of the Mason-Dixon Meltdown at Southern National Raceway Park in Kenly, NC. The PASS National Champion’s ring is currently being manufactured by Stylecraft. From Super Bowl rings to civic awards, Stylecraft has been making finely crafted jewelry in the United States for over six decades. The 2013 PASS National Champion’s ring will be massive in size and will be emblazoned with the PASS logo and other jewels. This year’s championship ring is meticulously being designed now and will be unveiled on the PASS website in the coming weeks. It joins an impressive list of awards for the PASS National Champion which includes a chassis from Bull City Race Cars and a custom helmet made by Bell Helmets.

“We are very excited to be giving this opportunity to North America’s best Super Late Model racer,” said PASS President Tom Mayberry. “For whoever wins the 2013 PASS National title, no matter where they go, this championship ring will stand as a symbol of the hard work and dedication it took to achieve one of short track racing’s ultimate goals.”

The PASS National Series is comprised of six elite Super Late Model events throughout North America and gets underway in less than three weeks with the Inaugural Florida Winter Meltdown at Auburndale Speedway on February 8-9. In addition to a talented group of PASS regulars, former PASS National Champions Ben Rowe and Jay Fogleman hope to contain a strong contingent of Florida Super Late Model standouts on the tricky quarter mile oval.

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NASCAR Names Directors for Modified Tours

 Wilson to Lead Whelen Modified Tour, Ellis Whelen Southern Tour

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – NASCAR announced today the appointment of Jimmy Wilson to the position of NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour director and Juston Ellis to the same position for the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour.

Wilson, originally from Orlando, Fla., has served the two previous years as director of the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour. He’ll now lead the northeast-based NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, which traces its roots back to the first NASCAR-sanctioned event in 1948.

Ellis, who hails from Suffolk, Va., will fill the void left by Wilson. He served the two previous seasons as the technical director for the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour.

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NEMA History at Tracks on the 2013 Schedule

Lee USA Speedway, Lee, NH 1/3 mile

2012 Fastest feature lap: 13.307 by Adam Cantor

Active Drivers with NEMA wins at Lee USA Speedway

Randy Cabral 2 Last – 2012 (Bertrand 47)

Adam Cantor 2 Last – 2012 (Cantor 33)

Jeff Horn 4 Last – 2009 (Horn A1)

Joey Payne 1 Last – 2003 (Angelillo 45)

Bobby Santos III 1 Last – 2008 (Santos 98)

Ben Seitz 1 Last – 2004 (Valeri 17)

Greg Stoehr 1 Last – 2011 (Stoehr 26b)

Russ Stoehr 2 Last – 1991 (Beane 26)

Continue reading ‘NEMA History at Tracks on the 2013 Schedule’