Forty years ago in 1968, the weekend action
started at Lee Raceway on Thursday night where Fred DeSarro
took the win. It rained at Stafford on Friday night.
Albany-Saratoga ran on Saturday night with Andy Romano taking
the win over Maynard Forette, Lou Lazzaro, Rene Charland and
Richie Evans. Bugsy Stevens ruled Norwood and at Islip, it was
George Brunnhoelzl Sr. Gene Bergin,
in the M-6 was the Sunday winner at Thompson.
Thirty five years ago in 1973, Tioga ran on Saturday night.
Geoff Bodine took the win over Richie Evans and Jerry Cook.
Bugsy Stevens blew the engine in the Koszela No.15 and ended
up driving Pete Fiandacca's No.135 to an 11th place finish. At
Malta on Sunday, Richie Evans won a 150-lap contest. Bugsy
Stevens, driving for Joe Brady, finished second. Leo Cleary
finished third with Fred DeSarro, fourth.
Gene Begin brought the M-6 home
Thompson Speedway in 1968.
Thirty years ago in 1978, Roland LaPierre jr. recorded a popular win
at Waterford. Dickie Doo Ceravolo finished second with Dick Dunn,
third and at Seekonk it was Ronnie Bouchard over Geoff Bodine. Islip
ran a 300 lapper on Sunday. Richie Evans took the win over Wayne
Anderson, Jerry Cook and Satch Worley. Geoff Bodine won at Thompson
over Ray Miller and at Monadnock it was Red Kimball over Pete
Twenty five years ago in 1983, Gomer Taylor was the winner at
Waterford on Saturday. Eddie St Angelo won at Seekonk and Jim
Spencer won at Tioga. Richie Evans won the annual Thompson 300.
Corky Cookman finished a strong second with Kenny Bouchard, third.
In Winston Cup action at Richmond, Bobby Allison took the win and
Randy LaJoie won Rookie of the Year honors in the Grandnational
Twenty years ago in 1988, Jerry Marquis put the Bob Judkins mount in
victory lane at Riverside Park and Mike Stefanik won the Thompson
300 over Reggie Ruggerio, Doug Hevron and Mike McLaughlin.
Bentley Warren won the
Supermodified Classic at
Star Speedway for the fifth time in 1993.
Fifteen years ago in 1993, Stafford ran on
Friday night with Mike Christopher taking the win over Mike
Paquet, Ted Christopher and Dennis Gada. At Waterford on
Saturday night, Chris Jones took the win over Mark LaJunesse
and Jerry Pearl. Eleven cars were taken out in an early race
wreck. At Riverside Park it was Jerry Marquis over Ed Kennedy.
Mike Ewanitsko, in the Art Barry No.21, won the annual
Thompson 300 over Mike Stefanik and Charlie Pasteryak.
Pasteryak led three times for over 100 laps and was headed for
victory lane when his tires went away with 20 laps to go and
was passed by Ewanitsko and Stefanik. Ted Christopher won the
SK event, which was run in conjunction with the 300. Mark
Martin was the Busch Grand National winner at Richmond and
Rusty Wallace took the Winston Cup honors. In other news, it
was announced that Geoff Bodine was released by Bud Moore and
would be driving his own car the following week at Dover and
Bentley Warren won his
fifth Star Speedway Supermodified Classic.
Ten years ago in 1998, Tucker Reynolds was the Saturday night winner
at Waterford as he beat out the high flying Dennis Gada. Jeff Pearl
finished third. Mike Stefanik continued his dream season as he took
the lead from Bryan Wall on lap 284 of the BGNN Thompson 300.Wall
finished second with Jamie Aube, third. Bert Marvin won the
companion SK-30 lapper. Ted Christopher finished second with Mike
Christopher, third. In Winston Cup action at Richmond, Jeff Burton
beat Jeff Gordon by inches. Dale Earnhardt Jr. won the Grand
Five years ago in 2003, Ted Christopher passed Lloyd Agor after a
late race re-start and went on to record his 68th win at the
Stafford Speedway. Agor finished second with Bo Gunning, third.
Dennis Gada hustled his way to the front on Saturday night at
Waterford as he recorded yet another victory, which brought him
closer to his fifth track championship. Rob Janovic finished second
with Jeff Karns, third. Out on Long Island at the Riverhead Raceway
Chuck Steuer took the win over Dan Jivenelli and Wayne Anderson and
at Wall Township Speedway in New Jersey Frank Polimedia was the
victor. The NASCAR Featherlite Modified Tour Series was at the
Thompson Speedway for the annual Thompson 300. Forty-one Modifieds
were on hand for the seriesí longest event that carried a purse of
$114,475. Tony Hirschman was the Busch Pole sitter and the winner
after taking the lead from Jerry Marquis on lap 273. Marquis was
strong but was no match for the Pennsylvania driver and had to
settle for the second spot. Jeff Fuller finished third with Ricky
Fuller and Tom Bolles rounding out the top five. Former series
champion Mike Stefanik was an early leader until getting a flat tire
on lap 99. NASCAR punished Stefanik two laps for intentionally
bringing out the caution. On learning the penalty, Car owner Art
Barry made the call to park the car. Twin Sunoco SK-type modified
events were run with Todd Ceravolo and Chuck Docherty taking the
wins. In Winston Cup action at Richmond, Mike Skinner, pinch-hitting
for injured Jerry Nadeau took the Busch Pole but was forced to start
last after he wrecked in Happy Hour final practice. Ryan Newman took
the win as the action was heated behind him. Kevin Harvick was
running second with nine laps to go when Ricky Rudd hit him and
parked him in the wall. Harvick went after Rudd in the pit area
following the event. For his post race actions Harvick was fined
$35,000 and put on probation for the rest of the year. It was a
rough weekend for Harvick as he was bumped out of the lead the night
before on the last lap of the Busch Series event. Johnny Sauter, who
did the bumping, won the event. In other news of the week, Joe
Lewandowski accepted a position as Director of Business Affairs at
the Waterford Speedbowl, Kurt Bush dropped his assault complaint
against Jimmy Spencer and long time fan and friend of Bugsy Stevens,
Ed Kearney Jr. passed away after suffering a heart attack.
Last year, 2007, The 2007 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour was at the
Thompson Speedway for Modified Mania. Donnie Lia and car owner Bob
Garbarino who were currently enjoying a dream season out time
trailed thirty-five other Whelen Modifieds to score their third
Busch Pole of the season. Lia and his Mystic Missile toured the
5/8-mile oval in 18.885 seconds. Ronnie Silk was second fastest with
Matt Hirschman, third. Lia picked the pole starting position for the
150 lap main event. Ron Yuhas Jr picked the outside pole while
Hirschman picked third.
Heavy rain at 4:00pm on Sunday forced officials to postpone the
event to first to Saturday September 22nd and then on Monday to
Sunday, September 23rd.
In True Value Modified Series action at the Thompson it was great to
see Mark Mockovak in his new spot with what has become a very
popular series in New England. Thirty-two True Value Modifieds were
on hand for qualifying for their segment of Modified Mania at the
Thompson Speedway. Chris Pastryak, Andy Seuss and Jimmy Kuhn won
three Heat Races. The 75-lap True Value Modified Racing Series
portion of Modified Mania at Thompson International Speedway was
postponed after completing only 2 laps because of inclement weather.
Andy Seuss was leading the event when the torrential rain began.
In regular NASCAR Whelen Weekly Racing action at the Thompson
Speedway Sunoco Modified heat winners were Jimmy Blewett, Tommy
Cravenho and Danny Cates. Glenn Boss scored the victory in the lone
TIS Modified heat. Norm Wrenn and Jeff Zuidema of scored heat race
wins for the Pro-Fours.
Matt Hirschman went pole to pole as he led every lap of the Race of
Champions main event before the rains came in forcing the
postponement of the Whelen Modified Tour 150 and the True Value
Modified Racing Series. The True Value Modified Racing Series
completed only two laps with Andy Suess of Hampstead, NH, holding
the point before torrential rains hit the speedway.
Three of the other scheduled events of Modified Mania II were
completed before the rains came with Todd Ceravolo taking down the
Sunoco Modified main event and Leo Oliveira scored the TIS Modifieds
victory. Thompson regular Norm Wrenn scored the Pro-Four Victory.
Hirschman, the current Central Region point leader, led every lap en
route to the victory. The second-generation driver jumped from his
third-place starting spot to lead the opening lap and would not be
headed. Rick Kluth ran strong in the second spot for much of the
race. In the late stages, with Hirschman out front, Kluth turned
back advances of a charging Woody Pitkat. The current Northern
Region leader, Pete Brittain, who had run a conservative race up to
this point, turned it on with only a hand full of laps remaining.
With five laps to go, Hirschman continued to stretch his lead while
Pete Brittain caught Kluth. That battle for second heated up over
the final laps when Brittain got a run on Kluth in turn one. A
single lap later, Brittain was able to make the pass on Kluth to
move into the second spot. Time ran out as Brittain could do nothing
but chase the potent Hirschman. At the checkers, it was all
Hirschman. Brittain finished second over Rick Kluth and Woody Pitkat.
Lenny Fisher rounded out to the top five By virtue of technical
inspection, Leo Oliveira was declared the winner in the TIS Modified
The Stafford Motor Speedway began their fall series of Friday night
racing. Keith Rocco took the SK Modified feature win, Dillon Moltz
won the Late Model feature, Chris Matthews won the SK Light feature,
Andrew Durand won the Limited Late Model feature, and Dan Flannery
won the DARE Stock feature.
The 40-lap SK Modified feature took the green with Wade Mattesen
charging past Richie Pallai, Jr. to take the early lead. Pallai
would battle back by Mattesen on lap-5 to reclaim the lead. Rocco
followed Pallai past Mattesen, and Pallai and Rocco ran nose to tail
for the lead over the next several laps. Rocco moved by Pallai on a
lap-11 restart, and from that point on, he would not be headed at
the front of the field as he scored his third SK Modified feature
win of the 2007 season. Kerry Malone finished a distant second to
Rocco, with Ted Christopher, Curt Brainard, and Todd Owen rounding
out the top-5. NASCAR Whelen All-American Series National
Championship hopeful Woody Pitkat suffered through several spins but
came back to finish 9th.
In NASCAR Whelen All-American Series action at the Waterford
Speedbowl Dennis Gada got a little closer to an unprecedented
seventh Modified Track title as he scored his fifth win. Two race
meets remain of the 2007 season. Gada currently trails Rob Janovic
by 16 points. For the last two races Gada needs to run hard and run
to win. Keith Rocco finished second and Janovic was third. Gada
moved from fourth to second after a crash with 24 laps to go. Seven
laps later, Gada moved underneath Rocco and cruised to his 55th
career SK win. Tyler Chadwick and Jeff Paul rounded out the top
five.Bruce Thomas Jr. unofficially clinched the Late Model
championship, winning his 11th feature of the season by overtaking
Ron Yuhas Jr. with eight laps to go in the 30-lap feature. Thomas
won the Mini Stock title in 2001. Kyle James won his first career
race in the Mini Stock feature. In the Sportsman feature, Walt Hovey
Jr, won again.
In NASCAR Nextel Cup action at Richmond Jimmie Johnson hit his
stride at exactly the right time, winning two straight races to roll
into the Chase for the championship. Dale Earnhardt Jr. never had a
chance, the victim of five faulty motors when his season was on the
line. Johnson easily raced to his series-best sixth victory of the
season. But Earnhardt, suffered his third blown motor in the past
seven races to finish 30th. Kyle Busch was the Busch Series winner.
This week are several vintage racing photos
from the Dave Dykes Collection
Ben Dodge, Sr.
Fred "Fuzzy" Baer
"Money Bags" Moe Gherzi
Bill Slater's Studebaker at Daytona
Thatís it for this week from
40 Clark St. Westerly RI 02891. Ring my chimes at 401-596-5467