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July 6, 2012

By Phil Smith

Sixty years ago in 1952 George Lombardo was the Wednesday night Sportsman winner at the New London-Waterford Speedbowl. Johnny Sandberg made it two in a row in Claiming Car action at the Connecticut shoreline oval. Cy Yates won a 50 lap special for the Sportsman division at the Speedbowl on Saturday night. Bud Matter was the Claiming Car winner.

Fifty five years ago in 1957, Moe Gherzi made it two in a row as he won the 25 lap Sportsman feature on Wednesday night at the New London-Waterford Speedbowl. Ted Stack was the non-Ford winner. Red Foote was the Sportsman winner on Saturday night while Arnie Harris was the non-Ford winner.

Fifty years ago in 1962, the New London-Waterford Speedbowl ran on Wednesday and on Saturday. Dick Beauregard was up for the task as he won both Modified features as was Ed Moody who won both Bomber features. Ron Narducci displaced Bill Slater from victory lane as he won on the dirt at the Stafford Springs Speedway on Friday night. At Plainville Stadium Harry Bliss was the winner in the 25 lap Open Competition feature over Tony Mordino. Rudy Brusik was third followed by Russ Faust and Dean Anderson.  George Hotchkiss won both 25 lap Novice features, one was rescheduled from the week before. Ed Patnode took the victory at Riverside Park with Sparky Belmont second followed by Gene Bergin, Buddy Krebs and Danny Galullo.

Forty five years ago in 1967, Stafford ran a 100 lapper on Friday night with Gene Bergin in the M-6 taking the win over Fred DeSarro, Fred Harbach, Eddie Flemke and Tommie Elliott. At the Albany Saratoga Speedway Kenny Shoemaker took the top spot over Andy Romano, Bill Wimble, Don Wayman and Dick Clark. At Norwood Arena on Saturday night, Mr. Leo Cleary took top honors as he won the modified main event for the second week in a row. Fonda’s victory lane belonged to Bill Wimble as he out ran Dave Lape and Andy Romano for the win. Fred "Fuzzy" Baer scored a popular Modified win at Waterford while Jiggs Beetham took the checkers in the Daredevils. Utica Rome ran their rained out 100 lapper from the week before and it was Eddie Flemke taking the win over Bill Wimble, Rene Charland, Don MacTavish and Ernie Gahan. At Plainville Stadium Don Spazano won the 50 lap feature followed by Sparky Belmont, Roger Seaburgh, Harry Bliss and Tony Dadio. Riverside Park found Bill Greco in the winners circle of the 150 lap race.

Forty years ago in 1972, Fred DeSarro had Len Boehler's Ole Blu in top form as he dusted the field at Malta on Friday night. Lou Lazzaro finished second. Ronnie Bouchard, Bobby Santos and Bugsy Stevens rounded out the top five. Stafford had a 150 planned for Saturday night but rain prevailed. At Islip, Charlie Jarzombek took the top spot and at Fonda it was Harry Peek over Lou Lazzaro and Don Wayman. At Utica-Rome on Sunday night, favorite son Richie Evans with his Rusty Nail Special beat out Denis Giroux, Ron Newman, Bernie Miller and Jerry Cook. Glynn Shafer was the Saturday night Modified winner at Waterford. Waterford ran a 75 lap open competition event on Wednesday. Jerry Dostie took the win. Eddie Flemke finished second with Bob Potter, Dick Watson and Ronnie Bouchard rounding out the top five. At Plainville Stadium Harvey Vaillencourt was the 50 lap Modified winner and Ronnie Rocco won the Novice feature.

Thirty five years ago in 1977, rain washed out Friday night racing at Stafford and Monadnock. Saturday night at Seekonk saw Bugsy Stevens take a 35 lap win over George Summers, George Murray and Ronnie Bouchard. At Westboro, Jim Landry took the top spot over Ken Bouchard and Butch Walch. The annual Riverside 500 saw Geoff Bodine and Bob Stefanik team up for the win. The team of Bob Polverari and Eddie Flemke finished second. At Islip a 100 lap Race of Champions qualifier was on tap and it was invader, Richie Evans, stealing the thunder from the Long Island regulars. Gary Cretty finished second with Charlie Jarzombek, third and Jerry Cook, fourth. At Freeport, George Brunnhoelzl beat out Russ Klar and Eddie Brunnhoelzl and at Lancaster it was Maynard Troyer over Roger Treichler. In Sunday night action at Thompson, Geoff Bodine took the top spot over Ronnie Bouchard and Bugsy Stevens. Reggie Ruggiero passed up the Riverside 500 and drove the Mario Fiore 44 the win at Plainville Stadium. Ronnie Rocco was second followed by Tom Hughes, Ron Van Nesse and Carl Charette. Bill Mordenti was the Pleasure Car winner. Gene Bergin won a popular victory at the Waterford Speedbowl over Moose Hewitt, Bill Greco, Don Bunnell and Dick Ceravolo.

Thirty years ago in 1982, after seven rain-outs in a row, Waterford Speedbowl promoter Dick Williams ran a Wednesday night event. Fifty laps, no points. Taking the win was Glynn Shafer in the Ron Yuhas No.6.Don Bunnell finished second with Moose Hewitt, Don Fowler and Joe Tiezzi rounding out the top five. At Stafford on Friday night, Reggie Ruggiero blasted his way to the front and beat Greg Sacks to the finish line. Kenny Bouchard finished third with Jerry Pearl,fourth. At New Egypt, John Blewett beat out Richie Evans for the win and at Spencer it was George Kent over Jerry Cook and Maynard Troyer. Fred Harbach made it two for two as he won at Riverhead on Friday night and at Islip on Saturday night. Saturday night at Waterford, it was dry for the first time since mid May. Jerry Pearl took the win over Randy Lajoie. At Seekonk, Gomer Taylor was the victor with George Savory and Eddie StAngelo in hot pursuit. Thompson ran twin 40's on Sunday with Kenny Bouchard and Greg Sacks sharing the glory. In Winston Cup action at Nashville, Darrel Waltrip took the win.

Twenty five years ago in 1987, Spencer Speedway ran a 100 lap NASCAR Modified championship event. Mike Mclaughlin took the win over Reggie Ruggiero, Kenny Bouchard, Jan Leaty and Jamie Tomaino. Double SK Modified Features were run at Stafford with Sonny O ‘Sullivan and Ted Christopher in victory lane. Christopher followed up his Stafford win with a victory at Waterford on Saturday night. At Riverside, it was Bob Polverari over Dan Avery and Mike Stefanik and at Riverhead; Dan Jivenelli took the top spot. In other Saturday night action, George Kent won out at Shangri-La over Randy Hedger. Oswego ran the Port City 150 on Sunday. Tony Hirschman rose to the occasion as he took the victory over George Brunnhoelzl and Ron Shepherd.

Twenty years ago in 1992, rain washed out Friday night racing at Stafford and Saturday night racing at Waterford plus the Featherlite Modifieds at Loudon. At Riverside, Reggie Ruggiero took the win over Rick Fuller and Chris Kopec and at Riverhead, Ed Brunnhoelzl beat out Bill Park for the win. Richard Petty, in his last appearance as a driver at the Daytona 400 and was a DNF.

Fifteen years ago in 1997, Jim Broderick won the 50 lap holiday program at Stafford on Friday night. At Waterford, Todd Ceravolo recorded his fifth win of the season after passing Eric Berndt with 17 laps to go. Scott Spaulding finished second with Berndt, third. Reggie Ruggiero recorded his 89th career win at Riverside on Saturday night. Ted Christopher finished second. In Winston Cup action, John Andretti led the final 23 laps to win the Pepsi 400 at Daytona and in Busch Grandnational action at Milwaukee, Randy Lajoie took the win.

Ten years ago in 2002 the Fourth of July weekend started on Wednesday night with the NASCAR Featherlite Tour at Stafford for a 150-lap event. Ted Christopher went from pole to pole to win the event. Ed Flemke Jr. in the Hill Enterprises entry was the show as he came from the back twice to finish second. Rick Fuller, Jerry Marquis and Chris Kopec rounded out the top five. Bo Gunning won the companion 50 lap SK-Modified event. Jeff Malave survived a rough night at Thompson to take the win on Thursday night. Ron Yuhas Jr. finished second with Kerry Malone, third. During the running of the event Eric Berndt rode over Bert Marvin after Marvin was brake checked by Ted Christopher. Christopher was later sent to the rear after he spun Bo Gunning into the wall. Christopher came from the rear and finished fourth ahead of Tom Bolles who rounded out the top five. Ted Christopher scored his 72nd career win at Stafford on Friday night.

Christopher ‘s win tied him with all-time winner Bugsy Stevens. Lee Raceway ran an open competition modified event on Friday. Ed Flemke Jr. led from pole to pole to take the win over Charlie Pasteryak, Carl Pasteryak, Kirk Alexander and Matt Hirschman. At Waterford, Jeff Pearl started up front with a car that had been wrecked two weeks previous and went on to win the Saturday night feature at the shoreline oval. Dennis Gada finished second and was followed by Rob Janovic and Ed Reed Jr. The Busch North Series was also on hand at Waterford and it was veteran Kelly Moore taking the win. At the Riverhead Raceway on Long Island, JR Bertuccio took the holiday 50 lapper over Wayne Anderson and Bill Park. Rounding out the weekend was the Race of Champions Tour event at the Adirondack Speedway in upstate New York. Eric Beers inherited the lead on lap 134 of the 150-lap event and went on to take the win. Ted Christopher was leading the event when he was turned into the fence while trying to block George Kent. Kent was sent to the rear. Jim Willis finished second with Rick Zacharis, third. In Winston Cup action at Daytona, the DEI cars continued to dominate as Michael Waltrip took the win. On a sad note, four spectators were injured after being struck by lightening.

Five years ago in 2007, the 2007 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour traveled to the Twin State Speedway in Claremont, N.H on Sunday for the second of three “Flash Format Events” scheduled in 2007. Posted Awards were $56,762 which was considerably less than regular Tour events. As of July 5, only 29 teams had filed entries. Among the missing were Ron Yuhas Jr, Woody Pitkat, Tony Hirschman and Bobby Santos III. Car owners were attempting to make a statement that the race purses for the “Flash Events” were sub-par. Twenty-six Modifieds, a light field in comparison to previous Whelen Modified Tour series events, were on hand for the Sunday evening event. The top six, Ronnie Silk, Ryan Preece, Matt Hirschman, Don Lia, Mike Stefanik and James Civali, qualified through time trials. Heat winners were Ted Christopher and Jon McKennedy. Hirschman was fresh off a Saturday night 75 lap Race of Champions Series win at the Lancaster Speedway in Western New York State.

James Civali avoided the raindrops and held off Matt Hirschman as he won the Twin State event. Civali took the lead from Ron Silk going into turn 1 on lap 27 of the 100-lap contest. Ronnie Silk finished third and was followed by Donnie Lia, Ted Christopher and Mike Stefanik who recovered from an early spin. Civali led al but one of the final 90 laps. The race distance was extended to 117 laps because of caution laps in the first 50 laps, which were scored.

The True Value Modified Racing Series returned to Monadnock Speedway for a 100-lap feature on Saturday evening. Kirk Alexander passed Rob Goodenough with seven laps remaining to record the win at the Winchester, NH ¼ mile high banked oval. Goodenough finished second with Dwight Jarvis, third. Ted Christopher was an early contender until he was eliminated in a wreck on lap 65.

In regular Thursday Night Thunder action at the Thompson Speedway Keith Rocco scored a hard fought win as he scored his second win of the season at the northeast Connecticut oval. A late race confrontation with Bert Marvin added to the excitement. Harry Rheaume took the lead at the start followed by Danny Cates, Bert Marvin and Jimmy Blewett. The racing was slowed on lap three by a caution for a single car spin by Eric Goodale. On the ensuing restart Marvin moved ahead of Cates and set his sites on Rheaume. Marvin was able to drive around Rheaume for the lead on lap five. Jimmy Blewett moved into third ahead of Cates on the next circuit. John Blewett ran in fifth but was looking for more as he too battled with Cates. Keith Rocco joined the fray catching John Blewett in fifth. The second caution flew on lap 10 when Kerry Malone and Buddy Charette tangled exiting turn two.On the restart, Marvin jumped out to the lead followed
by Jimmy Blewett Blewett made a run on Marvin but the action was halted for an incident that involved Shelly Perry, Eric Goodale, Brian Tagg and others. Marvin was again the man to beat on the restart getting the edge on Blewett. Rheaume held strong in third. Just as Blewett was making his run on the leader Marvin, the lead the race was slowed again when the Josh Steeves came to rest in turn three. The ensuing restart set off a chain reaction that claimed a number of cars including Steeves, Brett LeBlanc, and Ricky Shawn.The restart gave. Blewett the opening that he needed. Marvin and Blewett went side-by-side for nearly a lap before Blewett assumed his place at the head of the pack on lap 13. Another quick caution and a subsequent attempt at the restart was called back. Under the caution John Blewett headed down pit road for service. Once back under green, Jimmy Blewett took control of the race once again. Tommy Cravenho and Keith Rocco were locked in a battle for the third spot while Woody Pitkat sat in fifth.

Marvin pressured Blewett by running the outside groove in search of the lead once again. Jimmy Blewett appeared to bobble entering turn three opening the door for Marvin and Rocco. Contact between the three leaders ended with the leader Marvin with contact with outside wall on the front stretch. Marvin felt that Rocco had done him in and his resulting actions found him getting ejected from the event. When racing finally resumed, Rocco was the new leader. Pitkat gave Rocco a run on the restart but could not make the pass. Todd Ceravolo was able to take over the second spot from Pitkat. Pitkat, however, after regaining his composure successfully went back after Ceravolo. Pitkat ran in second again on lap 24. Meanwhile Rocco began to check out on the field. Things settled down over the closing laps with Rocco handily taking his second win of the season over Pitkat and Ceravalo. Cravenho and Cates rounded out the top five.

Other Thursday night Thunder winners at Thompson were Ben Seitz of Pocasset, MA, who carried the checkers in the traditional holiday visit of the Northeastern Midget Association (NEMA) to Thompson. In regular weekly series action, Kurt Vigeant earned a hard-fought victory in the annual extra-distance race for the TIS Modifieds. Also earning his second feature win of the season was Mike O’Sullivan of Springfield, MA, in the Pro Stocks.

In NASCAR Whelen All-American Series action at the Stafford Motor Speedway the Late Models took center stage for the 13th Annual DiGiorgi Roofing & Siding Late Model 100. Mike O'Sullivan scored the win, with Ted Christopher winning the 40-lap SK Modified feature, Brit Andersen taking the 20-lap SK Light Modified feature, Bill Davis taking the 20-lap Limited Late Model feature, and Bill Dunn winning the 15-lap DARE Stock feature. The 13th Annual DiGiorgi Late Model 100-lap feature saw Mike O'Sullivan outlast Jim Peterson to take the victory.

Ted Christopher, Stafford’s winningest driver, ended a long dry spell as he won the 40-lap SK Modified feature, his first feature victory since the 2006 Spring Sizzler. Kerry Malone held the early lead, but retired on lap-7 after contact with Bo Gunning. Malone's misfortune put Keith Rocco out front and Rocco held the lead until lap-31 when Christopher dove under Rocco in turn 3 to take over the lead. One lap later, Rocco and Brad Hietala made contact and spun in turn 3 to bring out the caution. On the restart, Christopher powered to the lead and ran unchallenged to the checkered flag to take the victory. Woody Pitkat, who spun twice during the race, came back up through the field to finish second with Bo Gunning, Zach Sylvester, and Todd Owen rounding out the top-5.

The fastest open wheel cars in the Northeast returned to Stafford Motor Speedway on Tuesday, July 10th as the IMSA Supermodifieds made their fourth annual appearance at the Connecticut half-mile. Joining the ISMA Supers were the NEMA Midgets and the Pro-4 Modifieds, making for an exciting evening of open wheel competition. Rob Summers scored his first career ISMA Supermodified feature victory by winning the 50-lap feature, Erica Santos was the winner of the 25-lap NEMA Midget feature, and Jeff Zuidema was the winner of the 20-lap Pro-4 Modified feature event.

In NASCAR Whelen All-American Series action at the Waterford Speedbowl Jeff Pearl eased by Diego Monahan for the lead in turn three on lap 29 of the 100 lap SK Modified feature. He survived three restarts, the last with 19 laps remaining and finished a car length in front of Dennis Gada. Gada, involved in a first-lap crash that required considerable pit work, took second from Rob Janovic Jr. on the final restart.

In other action at the shoreline oval Dennis Botticello assumed command on lap 24 and went on to win the 100-lap Late Model feature. Botticello handled a number of restarts including three over the final 10 laps. In his first-ever Speedbowl ride, Tom O'Sullivan set a track record in qualifying (a 17.370 second lap) and then romped to victory in the 50-lap Sportsman feature. Point leader Ken Cassidy Jr. won the 50-lap Mini Stock feature after battling Danny Field side-by-side over the final six laps in the closest race of the night. O’Sullivan, winner of the 50-lap Sportsman event was disqualified. According to the release from the track the Camaro run by O'Sullivan and owned by Scott Fearn was found to be: “in violation of left-side weight requirements in post-race inspection.” Bill Gertsch Jr., who finished second, was declared the winner Jamie McMurray ended a massive losing streak in dramatic fashion, beating Kyle Busch by a bumper in the Pepsi 400 on Saturday night in Daytona Beach, Fla. McMurray snapped a 166-race winless streak by drag racing with Busch for much of the final two laps at Daytona International Speedway. The cars appeared to touch several times on their final trip around the famed track, and McMurray nosed across the finish line a mere 0.005 of a second ahead of Busch. It denied Busch a shot at a rare double victory - he won the rain-rescheduled Busch Series race 12 hours earlier.

In some sad news a twin-engine NASCAR plane crashed and destroyed two homes, killing five people. The tragedy began in Daytona Beach where Dr. Bruce Kennedy, husband of International Speedway Corp. executive Lesa France Kennedy, and Michael Klemm, a pilot who had worked for NASCAR aviation for 21 years, took off for Lakeland at 8:21 a.m., according to the Federal Aviation Administration. Shortly after, the pair reported smoke in the cockpit to air traffic controllers and said they would try to land at Orlando Sanford International Airport. They never made it.

Last year, 2011, The Whelen Modified Tour made its second visit of the season to the Thompson Speedway. Despite the fact that there were only 27 Modifieds on hand, 20 of them were potential winners. In New Jersey they refer to Jimmy Blewett as "Show Time". In New England that moniker belongs to Ted Christopher. Christopher put on a display of hard charging - belly to the ground racing as he scored a convincing win in the Budweiser ‘King of Beers’ 150 at the high banked, northeastern Connecticut oval. After setting fast time for the pole position Christopher was sent to the rear of the field at the start of the race after missing the driver’s meeting, and then had to come through the field again after getting involved in a spin on Lap 66, but it didn’t stop the Plainville, Conn., driver from picking up his fourth-consecutive NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour win at Thompson. Christopher pitted for a second time on Lap 121 and knifed through the field after restarting outside the top 10. He made the decisive pass of Ron Silk on Lap 142 and survived a four-lap sprint to the finish after the final caution flag was given to the field on Lap 143.

The victory was the 40th in Christopher’s Whelen Modified Tour career and 13th at Thompson. He has won seven of the last nine races at the .625-mile oval. Silk held on for second and point leader Rowan Pennink enjoyed another consistent run with a third-place finish. Bobby Santos and Eric Berndt completed the top five. Todd Szegedy, Doug Coby, Eric Beers, James Civali and Eric Goodale rounded out the top 10.

Rowan Pennink inherited the pole position for the start and after taking the lead at the initial start led the opening 56 laps before giving way to Doug Coby. Bryon Chew became the first casualty when his engine expired on lap 29. Matt Hirschman was having a less than impressive run in the early going as he became a lapped car on lap 50. Hirschman rebounded to finish 12th after a pit stop for adjustments and receiving the Lucky Dog award which put him back on the lead lap. The first caution of the night flew for Mike Stefanik who stopped on the racing surface after his engine sputtered and quit. It was later determined that the fuel pump on his engine had malfunctioned and quit. Stefanik ended up 26th. Under caution, Pennink pitted along with Bobby Santos, Todd Szegedy and Ron Silk. Coby, who chose not to pit, inherited the lead with Justin Bonsignore hot on his tail. Shortly after the green came out on lap 62, Santos came alive as
he moved into the second spot.

The second caution flew on lap 66 when three cars including that of Christopher made contact in turn three. Coby led the restart on lap 71. Pennink, who had made his way to fourth, moved into the second spot on lap 72 as Santos began to fade. Shortly after completing lap 75 Pennink shot by Coby as they entered turn three. Bonsignore, who had been running in the top five, dropped out on lap 83 when his battery shorted out and killed his engine. Bonsignore ended up 24th in the final run-down. The third caution flew on lap 118 for Wade Cole who spun in turn two. Meanwhile, a determined Christopher had worked his way back into the top ten. Shortly after the field restarted on lap 124 Ronnie Silk took the lead in turn two. Christopher had now broken into the top five. On lap 133 Christopher passed Santos for third only to see the field slow again for a spin by Richie Pallai. One lap after the lap 139 restart Christopher shot from third to second and after completing lap 141 took the lead from Silk in turn four. A minor spin on lap 142 and a restart on lap146 did not hinder Christopher's efforts as he sprinted home the winner.

It was simply a fantastic race, especially the last half. The checkered flag dropped at 10:02pm.

In regular weekly action at Thompson, Keith Rocco waged a heated battle with Ryan Preece to score a victory in the Sunoco Modifieds. Mike O’Sullivan was victorious in the Super Model division. His triumph was matched by his brother Tommy O’Sullivan who scored his second straight Late Model feature win. Chris Douton earned the victory in a rough-and-tumble Limited Sportsman feature. Glenn Boss wired the field to score his first TIS Modified feature win of the season. Danny Field continues to make history at Thompson International Speedway with his sixth consecutive victory in the Mini Stocks.

The Sunoco Modified field which drew a season high 14 cars saw Rocco take down a hotly contested event to score his third win of the season at Thompson.

The Stafford Motor Speedway started the week off on Tuesday night with the 8th annual CARQUEST Extreme Tuesday program. Chris Perley won the 50-lap ISMA Supermodified feature, Russ Stoehr won the 30-lap NEMA Midget feature event, and Norm Wrenn made it four wins in a row at Stafford by taking the 25-lap Pro-4 Modified feature event. In the CARQUEST Champions For Charities event, Keith Rocco took the checkered flag but the real winner was charity as the 14 champion drivers raised over $40,000 for their selected charities.

In the Supermodified feature, Perley made the pass for the lead on lap-43 and he led the remaining 7 laps as early leader Ted Christopher began to fall back from Perley. Johnny Benson came home in third behind Perley and Christopher, with Timmy Jedrzejek, and Russ Wood making up the top-5.

In regular Friday night action at Stafford Keith Rocco carried his winning ways over. Rocco was the big winner of the night as he doubled up by winning both the 40-lap SK Modified® feature event and the 30-lap Late Model feature, Joey Cipriano took his third feature win of the season in the 20-lap SK Light Modified feature, Cory Casagrande was the winner of the 20-lap Limited Late Model feature, and Cory's brother Kyle Casagrande nailed down his third win of the season in the 15-lap DARE Stock feature.

In action at the Waterford Speedbowl, the shoreline oval presented the Speedbowl.com 300 mid-season championship event Saturday evening. In all, six divisions were on hand with five competing in extra-distance length races. Scoring NASCAR Whelen All-American Series victories were Keith Rocco, who claimed his second consecutive and sixth overall win in the SK Modified® division on the year. Ray Parent Jr. won the Bob Valenti Auto Mall Late Model feature, Ed Puleo took the Street Stocks and Ken Cassidy Jr. was the winner in the Mini Stock feature. Dana Dimatteo was the benefactor of a last-lap tangle in the Legends Cars race, vaulting him to the checkered flag. Twelve-year old Ken Morin Jr. rounded out the winners on the night, taking down the Bandolero feature win.

For Rocco, the 100 lap win capped off a perfect weekend as his stats showed three for three in open wheel Modified competition. The defending NASCAR National Champion had also won the Late Model event at Stafford on Friday night.

The Valenti Modified Racing Series was at the Monadnock Speedway in Winchester, NH for a 100 lapper on Saturday night. Jon McKennedy scored his first ever win at the fast quarter mile oval. McKennedy, who started seventh broke the strangle hold that Kirk Alexander had previously held as he won the previous four races at the place they call "Mad Dog". McKennedy took the lead from Alexander on lap 65 and never looked back. Alexander finished second and was followed by Les Hinckley, Rowan Pennink and Rob Goodenough. Sixth through tenth were Dwight Jarvis, Mike Holdridge, Jim Boniface, Chris Pasteryak and Max Zachem.

The race, slowed by three caution flags, was completed in 40 minutes. There were 23 race teams entered in the event, 17 cars were running at the conclusion, 14 on the lead lap.

In the Southland at the Caraway Speedway in Asheboro, NC, L.W. Miller capped off a dominating run Friday night with a furious finish to claim the Whelen Southern Modified Tour Firecracker 150 presented by Budweiser. Miller held off George Brunnhoelzl III on two green-white-checkered finish attempts before claiming his first NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified win since August 10, 2010. Andy Seuss finished third. John Smith and Burt Myers were fourth and fifth, respectively.

The Bowman-Gray Stadium in Winston-Salem, NC was silent and will resume racing this week.

At the Riverhead Raceway on Long Island, Shawn Solomito was the Modified winner.

Joey Logano picked up his first win of the season Friday night with a last-lap push from teammate Kyle Busch to win the Nationwide Series race at Daytona International Speedway. It comes on the heels of him winning the pole at Sonoma then finishing a career-high sixth on the road course.

In Sprint Cup action at Daytona, Matt Kenseth pushed David Ragan for the final two laps as Ragan cruised to his first career Sprint Cup win in 163 starts.

This week are several photos, Courtesy of SpeedwayLineReport.com & Dave Dykes RacingThroughTime.com
Click on Photo for Full Size


Ed Flemke


Don Spazano


Harry Bliss


Gene Bergin

George Hotchkiss

Ed Patnode

That’s it for this week from 11 Gardner Drive, Westerly RI 02891. Ring my chimes at 401-596-5467. E-Mail is: smithpe_97_97@yahoo.com

Phil Smith has been a columnist for Speedway Scene and various other publications
 for over 3 decades.

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