Sixty five years ago in 1948,
the Midgets were at the peak of popularity.
At Cherry Park Speedway in Avon, Ct. The one legged
marvel Bill Schindler took the win over Al Keller, Russ Klar and
Sixty years ago in 1953, racing at the New
London-Waterford Speedbowl rained out for the third week in a row.
Fifty five years ago in 1958,
Dick Beauregard was the 25 lap Modified winner at the New
London-Waterford Speedbowl. Charlie Webster was the non-Ford winner.
Fifty years ago in 1963, Buddy
Krebs took the 30 lap feature at Riverside Park Speedway followed by
Jocco Maggiacomo, Charlie Centenaro, Danny Galullo and Dick Dixon.
Jim Luke won the 25 lap NASCAR Sportsman feature at the Utica-Rome
Speedway. Ken Meahl finished second with Bobby Cain, third. Rene
Charland and Lou Lazzaro rounded out the top five. Bill Slater was
the winner at Norwood Arena. On Sunday George Lombardo was the
winner of the 25 lap Open Compition feature at Plainville Stadium
over Ray Sikorski, Tom Casella, Bob Vivari & Bobby Bishop. Pat
DellaVecchia took the Novice Division feature over Bart Rocco. Ted
Stack was the 50 lap Modified winner at the New London-Waterford
Speedbowl followed by Dick Watson, Charlie Webster, Tony Mordino and
Billy Greco. Ed Gladue was the Bomber winner.
Forty five years ago in 1968 the
Fonda Speedway opened for the season with Eddie Pieniezek taking the
win over Jerry Cook and Ron Narducci. Ray Hendrick won the Spring
100 at Martinsville. Steady Eddie Flemke, in the Bobby Judkins No.2x
went two for two as he won season openers at Norwood Arena on
Saturday night and Thompson on Sunday afternoon. In other northeast
action, Don Diffendorf won the season opener at Fulton Raceway in
New York on Sunday and at the New London-Waterford Speedbowl Daring
Dick Caso was the 30-lap Modified winner while Bill Sweet made it
two in a row in Late Model Daredevil action. At Plainville Stadium
Rod Andrews was the winner over Bobby Knox, Nick Nickerson, Jack
Proulx and Dick Turmal. Dan Devoe was the winner at Riverside Park.
Forty years ago in 1973,
Stafford was running on Saturday nights. Ronnie Bouchard took the
30-lap win over Bob Santos, Eddie Flemke, and Leo Cleary. Islip
opened for the season with Charlie Jarzombek taking the win over Jim
Hendrickson and Fred Harbach. Rain was the winner at Plainville
Stadium. At Riverside Park Gary Colturi won the 100 lap feature over
Bobby Bard, and Billy Greco. Seekonk ran a 200 lapper on Sunday. Leo
Cleary in the RGM 87 took the win. Jerry Cook finished second and
was followed by Freddie Schulz, Flemke and Bugsy Stevens. George
Allum made it two in a row as he won the Hot Wheels 100 at the
Waterford Speedbowl. Martinsville Speedway ran a 100 lap event which
saw Paul Radford take the win over Bugsy Stevens, Bernie Miller,
Perk Brown and Ray Hendrick.
Thirty five years ago in 1978,
opening night at Stafford rained out. At Waterford Ron Bouchard made
it two in a row. Bugsy Stevens finished second and was followed by
Moose Hewitt in third. At Westboro, George Savory took the top spot
over George Summers. Down on the Island at Islip, Tom McCann was the
big winner. At Thompson on Sunday, Cleary in the Steve May no.15 out
ran Fred DeSarro to victory. Ray Miller, Bugsy Stevens and Freddie
Schulz rounded out the top five. Other weekend winners were Dunk
Rudolph at Monadnock, Dave Thomas at Star and Maynard Troyer at
Thirty years ago in 1983, Stan
Greger won at Riverside on Saturday over Ray Miller and SJ Evonsion.
Gil Hearne scored his 70th career win at Wall Stadium and at Islip,
Alan Harbach held off Don Howe for the win. Waterford cancelled
because of high water in the infield. Thompson ran twin 30's on
Sunday. Richie Evans won them both.
Twenty five years ago in 1988,
Bob Potter won at Waterford on Saturday. Ted Christopher finished
second with Dickie Doo Ceravolo, third. At Riverside, Charlie
Pasteryak braved the cold to get a well-deserved win and at
Riverhead, Tom Baldwin won out over Ed Brunnhoelzl. In SK modified
action at Thompson, Ted Christopher and Bo Gunning finished one-two.
The Mod Tour traveled to Jennerstown, Pa., where Reggie Ruggiero got
his second tour win of the year. Jim Spencer finished second and was
followed by Brian Ross and Steve Park
Twenty years ago in 1993, Bo
Gunning was the Friday night SK-Modified winner at Stafford. At
Waterford, on Saturday night, Ricky Young came home the surprise
winner after Ted Christopher and Dennis Gada spun while fighting for
the lead on the final lap. Christopher, running second, made a move
outside of Gada. Gada moved up to block and subsequently hit
Christopher. Both spun and crashed. Bob Potter ended up in second
spot. Bob Gegetskas won out over Dan Avery and Larry Moore at
Riverside and at the Riverhead Raceway, on Long Island, Tim
Continaro went pole to pole to win the 36 lap Modified feature. Jeff
Malave finished second with Ed Brunnhoelzl, third. The Featherlite
Modifieds and the Busch North Series were at Loudon on Sunday. With
16,000 fans looking on, Reggie Ruggerio won the 125-mile contest.
Mike Stefanik tried his darndest but couldn’t muster a charge and
ended up second. Doug Hevron finished third with Tim Arre and Bob
Park rounding out the top five. Jamie Aube was the BNS winner. Kelly
Moore finished second with Mike Mclaughlin and Dave Reszendes
following. Thompson ran SK-Modifieds on Sunday with Mike Christopher
taking the win over Tom Tagg and Lloyd Agor. Less than 1,000
spectators were on hand. In Winston Cup action at Talledega, Ernie
Irvan took the win over Jim Spencer and Dale Jarrett. Rusty Wallace
took a mean looking dump as he went end over end after getting some
help from Dale Earnhardt Sr.
Fifteen years ago, in 1998, the
rained out Spring Sizzler at Stafford was finally run. Mike Stefanik
took the lead from Doug French on lap 134 of the 200-lap event and
held off Tim Connolly for the win. Tony Ferrente Jr. finished third
with Jan Leaty and Carl Pasteryak rounding out the top five. In a
post race interview Stefanik said he felt that Ed Flemke Jr. didn’t
give him a fare shake as he attempted to pass him. Mike Christopher
was the 40 lap SK-Modified winner. In other weekend action,
Waterford was fogged out; Riverside Park hosted the Busch North
Series on Saturday night where Tom Carey took the win over Kelly
Moore and Jerry Marquis. Dan Avery was the modified winner. Bill
Park took the checker at Riverhead and was disqualified when a post
race inspection revealed an illegal clutch in his car. John Fortin
was awarded the win and Ed Brunnhoelzl moved up to finish second.
Ten years ago in 2003 opening
night at Stafford rained out. It cleared out on Saturday as
Riverhead opened for the season with a 50 lapper. JR Bertuccio took
the win over Joe Hartmann and John Fortin. At Waterford, Dennis Gada
picked up his first win of the season beating out Jeff Pearl, Rob
Janovic and Ed Reed Jr. Frank Polimedia won out at Wall Township
with Jimmy Blewett, second. In Winston Cup action at Richmond, Terry
Labonte took the pole. Jerry Nadeau crashed hard during Happy Hour.
He spun between turns one and two, and then hit the wall on the
driver’s side. Nadeau, who had to be cut from the car and life
starred to the hospital received severe head injuries which, for all
intents, ended his racing career. Joe Nemachek was the Winston Cup
winner with Bobby Labonte finishing second. The event went 392 of
the scheduled 400 laps because of rain. A major confrontation
erupted in the pit area after Jeff Green and Kevin Harvick tangled
and Green ended up getting wrecked. Both drivers, in cars owned by
Richard Childress, verbally assaulted each other over what happened,
plus Green argued with Childress. The end result was that Green
ended up getting fired from his ride.
Five years ago in 2008, The
Stafford Motor Speedway opened for the season under sunny skies with
qualifying for the annual Spring Sizzler, an event that has run
continuously since 1972 featuring the NASCAR Modifieds. Thirty five
Modifieds were on hand for qualifying for the 200 lap event that
carried a purse of $94,676.
Ted Christopher got a little closer to the 100 feature win mark as
he won his 98th career win at the nutmeg oval as he won the 200 lap
Spring Sizzler. Christopher pitted after Wade Cole spun on lap 141.
Restarting in 12th spot, Christopher made a determined march to the
front. He broke into the top five by lap 156 after Kevin Goodale
spun. By lap 167 Christopher had moved into second spot, turning up
the heat on leader Eric Beers. Christopher put Beers away on lap 172
and never looked back. Beers ended up in second spot and was
followed by Chuck Hossfeld, Mike Stefanik and James Civali. Sixth
through tenth were Rowan Pennick, Richard Savory, Jamie Tomaino,
Todd Szegedy and Glen Tyler.
Ryan Preece, who became the youngest Coors Light Pole Award winner
on Saturday, led 64 laps in the event but exited the race on lap 91
while in the lead with engine failure.
Numerous cautions, 13 for 71 laps, slowed the event and at one point
the event had to be red flagged. It was on lap180 after Jimmy
Blewett made a hard impact with the SAFER barrier in Turn 1. He
climbed out of the vehicle then expressed displeasure at Matt
Hirschman before taking his mandatory ambulance ride. Blewett's 19
car was briefly airborne and needed the double hook to be removed
from the track.
In SK Modified action Rob Summers took the 40 lap feature over Woody
Pitkat and Chris Jones. Keith Rocco, Doug Coby and Jimmy Blewett
followed. Among those in the field was Steve Reed who was one of the
top runners at the now closed Wall Township Speedway in New Jersey.
Reed finished eighth.
The Waterford Speedbowl continued its regular Saturday night
schedule. Dennis Gada charged from a 20th-place starting spot to
pass Jeff Pearl with 10-laps remaining to win the 35-lap SK Modified
at the shoreline oval It was the second victory of the season for
the 6-time champion. Following Gada across the line was Ron Yuhas Jr,
Keith Rocco, Pearl, and, Frank Ruocco.
SK Modified driver Ron Yuhas Jr. took the first Late Model win of
his career. Starting deep in the field, he passed early leader Ed
Reed Jr. following a late-race caution. Defending champion Bruce
Thomas Jr. slipped past Reed for second. Completing the top-5 were
Marc Curtis, and, Tim Jordan.
Other feature winners were Chuck Rodgers (Sportsman), Ben Bargnesi
(Mini Stocks), and, Michael Gervais Jr. (Legends).
The True Value Modified Series moved to the Monadnock Speedway in
Winchester, NH for an event on Saturday night. Point leader and
defending series champion Kirk Alexander returned to his home race
track, started last in a 26 car field, passed cross town rival Rob
Goodenough on lap 86, to win the” Bond Auto Parts 100” in front of a
near capacity crowd at the fast high banked quarter mile oval. The
True Value Modified Racing Series event was Alexander’s 28th career
victory and his third season opening win at the track known as “Mad
Pole sitter Chris Pasteryak set a torrid pace holding off the
constant challenges of 2007 Rookie of the Year, Peter Jarvis, Jarvis
stayed within striking distance of Pasteryak with Bryan Shumway last
years winner, Les Hinckley and 2006 champion Dwight Jarvis in hot
pursuit. By lap 20, Danbury CT ’s Ed Dachenhausen worked his way
into fifth and ran strong until a late race mishap would force him
to the sidelines. The race pace was fast early on with the first of
six caution flags not displayed until lap 38 for a Chris Wenzel
spin. The Holyoke , MA . veteran was able to rejoin the race which
stayed under green until lap 54 when a David Pinkhamand Jon
McKennedy spin drew the caution. On the restart, Peter Jarvis
vaulted into the top spot and held it until lap 66 when Goodnough
powered by. At this point, Alexander was fast making his move to the
front and by lap 70, the three-time champion was in third and
quickly closing in on Jarvis. Lap 73 saw Alexander pass Jarvis
setting up a great battle with Goodnough for the top spot. A caution
period slowed the pace on lap 85 resulting in Alexander motoring by
Goodenough on the restart lap. The two former Monadnock pro-stock
standouts raced hard and clean often side by side bringing the crowd
to it’s feet several times. When the checkers dropped on the 100th
circuit, Alexander’s margin of victory was a car length and a half
over Goodenough. Goodenough, Pinkham, Dwight Jarvis, Peter Jarvis,
Hinckley, Mike Holdridge, Pasteryak, Dale Evonsion, and Rookie of
the Year contender Kenny White.Jr, rounded out the top ten.
Tony Stewart held off Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s last-lap charge to win
the NASCAR Nationwide Series race Saturday for his first career
victory at Talladega Superspeedway in Alabama. Stewart started from
the pole, led 81 of the 117 laps, and sat comfortably out front in
the waning laps with Earnhardt on his rear bumper. Caution came out
with five laps to go for debris, setting up a two-lap sprint to the
finish. They raced nose-to-tail for the first lap, then Earnhardt
pulled out of line to make his charge. But Earnhardt didn't have
enough momentum and didn't get the help he needed to race past
Stewart. It allowed Stewart to go virtually unchallenged for the
final lap, as Earnhardt faded to sixth. David Stremme finished
second, his best result since he finished second in Milwaukee in
2004. Bobby Hamilton Jr. was third. The race was slowed by eight
cautions for 27 laps, including a 12-car accident that brought a red
flag stoppage of 25 minutes.
The accident happened when Kevin Lepage pitted for a loose wheel
under green and blended back onto the track right ahead of the field
as the pack headed into the first turn. He wasn't at the same speed,
and the cars couldn't avoid running over him. The first wreck
occurred 10 laps in when Dario Franchitti lost his right rear tire,
hit the wall and spiraled down the track. He was on the apron when
his car was T-boned by Larry Gunselman. Both drivers were
transported to a hospital for observation, and X-rays showed
Franchitti broke his left ankle.
In Sprint Cup action at Talladega Kyle Busch came back from a lap
down for his first win which was won under caution when a 12-car
accident brought out the yellow flag on the final lap. It froze the
field and allowed Busch to slowly make his way across the finish
line. Juan Pablo Montoya finished second to match his career best on
an oval since moving to NASCAR midway through 2006. Denny Hamlin,
Busch's teammate at Joe Gibbs Racing, finished third.
Last year, 2012, The Stafford
Motor Speedway cancelled its May 4 Opening Night racing program due
to the forecast of showers and thunderstorms that lasted throughout
the day and into the evening.
At the Waterford Speedbowl, Keith Rocco made it four out of six in
the SK Modifieds, while Mike Caprio won the night's special
extra-distance Street Stock feature. Those victories came as
Waterford Speedbowl played host to a six-division race program
Saturday evening as part of the shoreline oval's NASCAR Whelen
All-American Series schedule. It was Rocco's 40th career win in an
SK Modified at the shoreline oval. Tom Abele finished second,
followed by Nichole Morgillo, Jeff Pearl and Tyler Chadwick.
Other NASCAR Whelen All-American Series winners included Ken Cassidy
Jr. who won his fifth Mini Stock race out of six on the year and
Corey Barry who was named the winner in the SK Light Modified
feature. Matt Pappa was the night's Legends Cars feature winner and
Dan Butler won another Super X-Car race.
Rocco had to overcome adversity to pick up his fourth victory of the
six SK Modified events at the Speedbowl. He received damage in a
lap-7 wreck that involved his brother Jeff Rocco and Diego Monahan.
Keith Rocco was third in the running order on lap 19 when under
another caution flag, he ducked to the pits to make repairs to his
car. Rocco restarted in the rear and made a determined charge to the
front setting up for the final five lap run to the checkered flag.
Rocco dogged Abele looking for a way around. Headed into turn one on
lap-32, Rocco made a bold inside bottom shot on Abele. With two
wheels on the apron and two wheels in the grass he made the move
stick and raced out of turn two with the lead. A stunned Abele
fought back, getting to Rocco’s rear bumper in turn three a
determined Rocco was able to hang on to the lead. From there he went
on to the win.
A surprise entry in the SK Lite division was 72 year old former
Track Modified Champion Dickie Doo Ceravolo. Just out to have some
fun, Ceravolo finished fifth.
The sparks flew on the east end of Long Island at the Riverhead
Raceway. Twin 30's for the Modified were run with Tim Solomito
winning both. Ted Christopher crashed out of the first feature and
never made it out for the night cap.
In Modified action at Bowman-Gray in North Carolina, Tim Brown
pulled off a pass from the outside and went on to claim his 59th
career victory in the featured Modified Division. Robert Jeffreys
won the second 25-lap Modified race after a tangle between Brad
Robbins and visitor Jimmy Blewett left both out of contention.
Jeffreys matched Alfred Hill, at age 67, as the oldest winners of a
feature race at Bowman Gray.
Brown started from the outside on the front row, beside pole winner
Lee Jeffreys, and took the lead on the opening lap. Lee Jeffreys,
the fastest in qualifying with a lap of 13.276 seconds (67.8 miles
per hour) on the quarter-mile track, appeared to have successfully
held off Brown at the start. But Brown pulled ahead on the
backstretch and led the rest of the way. Lee Jeffreys finished
second, and Burt Myers was third.
Brown, an eight-time Bowman Gray champion who finished in the top
five just once in the first seven races in 2011, followed a
third-place finish in the season opener with his victory.
Robbins started from the pole in the second Modified race, but
Blewett, driving for Hillbilly Racing, maneuvered his way to the
lead in the opening lap. Robbins kept the pressure on Blewett with
bumps and shoves, and Blewett went spinning on the 18th lap. One lap
later, Blewett sent leader Robbins spinning, and Robert Jeffreys
took the lead for good. Ronnie Clifton finished second, and Jason
Myers was third.
Joey Logano got the best of Kyle Busch heading to the checkered flag
to win Saturday’s Aaron’s 312 NASCAR Nationwide Series race at
On the second attempt at a green-white-checkered finish following a
massive crash that involved eight cars and sent Eric McClure by
helicopter to the University of Alabama Birmingham hospital, Logano
helped Busch hold off the two-car tandem of Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and
Cole Whitt and then pulled out at the last second and beat Busch to
the checkered flag by a mere .034 seconds.
In Sprint Cup action at Talladega, Brad Keselowski used a big push
from Kyle Busch to pass leader Matt Kenseth, and after leaving the
Daytona 500 winner in their wake, Keselowski staved off Busch's
attempt to snatch the win. Using a move Keselowski said he had
dreamed about, he held on for his second win of the season and
second at Talladega.
This week are several
Vintage photos, Courtesy of SpeedwayLineReport.com & Dave Dykes RacingThroughTime.com
Click on Photo for Full Size
That’s it for this week from 11 Gardner
Drive, Westerly RI 02891. Ring my chimes