WALPOLE, N.H. — With just three weeks remaining until the season-opening event for the Granite State Pro Stock Series, officials are working diligently behind the scenes to finish final preparations.
The 2017 season will be headlined by the New England Short Track Showdown at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on July 1, but will also include races on the short tracks of the New England region. This season is also expected to bring multiple new challengers to the table in hopes of capturing the title.
“As we head into 2017, we are really excited when it comes to our schedule,” series president Mike Parks said. “Going to New Hampshire Motor Speedway and Seekonk Speedway for the first time is huge for our series. The interest from teams is better than ever before and we are looking forward to a banner season.”
There are multiple headlines heading into the 2017 campaign. Here are just a few of them:
11-Race Slate Set: The 2017 season will see 11 races across 10 different tracks spanning from Connecticut to Maine. The season begins April 30with a stop at Lee USA Speedway.
Gray Looking For Another Title: After filling the 2016 season with consistent finishes, Belchertown, Mass. driver Barry Gray will be looking to repeat as champion this season. Gray — who came close but failed to win a race last year – locked up his title in contention for the win in the season-finale at New London-Waterford Speedbowl, but he came home with a fourth-place finish. Gray will be at the top of the list when it comes to title favorites entering this season.
Lascuola Chasing Rookie Honors: After dominating the Friday night ranks of Seekonk Speedway’s Legend Cars class over the last few years, Nick Lascuola is making the move to the Granite State Pro Stock Series in 2017. His experience in Super Late Models came mostly at Seekonk and during a few PASS races — but other than that — this will be a learning curve for the Abington, Mass. driver. Lascuola has been successful in Legends, but can he make the move to SLM’s successful?
O’Connell Makes A Move: Former Legends Cars competitor Devin O’Connell is making a move to the Granite State Pro Stock Series in 2017. Last year, O’Connell competed in some ACT Tour races, finishing eighth in their season finale at Thompson. O’Connell has a new ride and new confidence heading into a rookie campaign.
GSPSS Hits NHMS: On Saturday, July 1, the Granite State Pro Stock Series will compete at New Hampshire Motor Speedway as part of the First Annual New England Short Track Showdown. The drivers will have a chance to compete on the “Magic Mile” and for many of them, it will be the first time they hit the track.
Entry Lists Increasing: The list of drivers that have registered to compete for this season includes some of New England’s top talent. Former competitors that are returning include Cory Casagrande, Mike O’Sullivan, Glenn Martel and Mike Mitchell. The list of drivers hoping to run many events includes Bryon Baker and Matt Frahm, two former winners on the series. Names like Scott MacMichael, Wyatt Alexander, and Angelo Belsito have also filed entries to compete in at least select events.
For more information on the Granite State Pro Stock Series, fans are encouraged to visit www.gspss.net.
Sources: Kyle Souza, Granite State Pro Stock Series PR