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Tuesday August 13, 2013
 

By Phil Smith                                                                                             

Thursday night Thunder at the Thompson Speedway was cancelled for the third week in a row due to rain. Thursday marked the fourth time this year weather has effected the Valenti Modified Racing Series at Thompson. The division was scheduled to run a feature at the track on May 19, but that was cancelled because of rain. The division is also scheduled to run its season ending event at Thompson on Oct. 19 as part of the track’s World Series weekend.

Thompson plays host to the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour this coming Thursday. The event, the Budweiser 150, is always the biggest race event of the summer at Thompson and everyone is keeping their fingers crossed that the 7-day weather cycle of rain on Thursdays will be broken.

This event will feature the WMT, Thompson’s five NASCAR Whelen All-American Series divisions along with a guest appearance from world famous Drifter Vaughn Gittin, Jr. Gittin will be on hand to meet and greet fans, sign autographs, perform drifting demonstrations.
John Spence, the PR Director for the MRS advises the makeup date for Thursday night's postponed race at Thompson Speedway is August 21.

At the Stafford Motor Speedway on Friday night the rain prevailed as over an inch of the wet stuff fell on the speedway area as well as all of New England.

Action at the Waterford Speedbowl saw Keith Rocco score his 50th career SK Modified win. Rocco made a two-fer as he came back later in the evening to win the Keith Rocco won his 50th career SK Modified feature at the Waterford Speedbowl early Saturday night, but he wasn't finished. Valenti Modified Racing Series 100-lap feature before a large crowd that gathered as part of the Speedbowl's annual Wings & Wheels event.

Other winners at the Connecticut shoreline oval were Jon McKennedy in the 50-lap International Supermodified Association feature, Todd Bertrand in the NEMA Midgets, Scott Bigelow in the NEMA Lite feature and Corey Barry in the SK Modified Light race.

Rocco's win in the 35-lap SK Modified race, was his sixth of the season at Waterford. Rocco also has wins at Thompson and at Stafford for an overall season total of 17.

In the SK Modified feature Rocco made a methodical move to the front, moving into fourth place on lap 10 and passing Craig Lutz and Rob Janovic following a restart a lap later to move into second behind Ed Puleo. Puleo was able to hold Rocco off until a lap 18 restart, when Rocco took the lead for good, although he had to survive one last restart with two laps remaining to hold off Kyle James. Puleo finished third. Ted Christopher and Frank Mucciacciaro rounded out the top five. Dennis Gada is the all-time SK Modified® division win leader with 62.

In the Valenti Modified Racing Series 100 at the Speedbowl Rocco scored his second career victory in front of a home track crowd. The division’s 100-lap feature saw Rocco rally to the front early in the going, taking command on the outside of Chris Pasteryak on lap-9. Rocco led easily over a long stretch of racing that took the event through a caution on lap-89 when Todd Owen’s car spewed fluid around the track. Following a lengthy delay for the cleanup, Rocco hung tough and survived four additional caution periods over the final nine laps which took its toll on the field behind him. Rocco handled every restart and subsequent challenger to take his first series win at the Speedbowl, marking the seventh different division he has won in at the track, tops all-time in the track’s 63-year history. Series point leader Rowan Pennink, who started 17th, finished in second and Pasteryak ended up third. Tommy Barrett and veteran racer Dwight Jarvis avoided the late trouble to finish fourth and fifth. Sixth through tenth were Steve Masse, Woody Pitkat, Richard Savary, Rob Goodenough, and Louie Mechalides.

Eight caution flags slowed the race including an opening lap crash that saw Ted Christopher get booted into the turn four wall. There were 32 Modifieds on hand for the event.

Down in the south land at the Bowman Gray Stadium in Winston-Salem, NC rain washed out all racing activity. Two race dates remain in the 2013 season, including next Saturday’s event that will feature two 65-lap races for the Modified Division in commemoration of the 65th year of racing at Bowman Gray.

At the Riverhead Raceway on Long Island Ryan Preece scored his third win of the season as he beat out Jason Agugliaro and Dave Sapienza for the win. Preece started fifth and led the final seven laps to score his NASCAR Whelen All American Series win.

On the speedway stock market scene last week all three speedway stocks were down for the week. The International Speedway Corporation took the biggest dip as they went down 1.52 to 33.31. Dover Entertainment dropped 0.23 to 2.43 and Speedway Motorsports dropped 0.19 to 18.20. NASCAR Cup sponsor Sprint went up 0.58 to 7.25 and NASCAR fuel supplier Sunoco (Energy Transfer) went up 3.26 to 53.00 while NASCAR tire supplier Goodyear went up 0.03 to 19.05. The car builders were all negative for the week. Toyota dropped 6.76 to 127.57 while General Motors dropped 0.93 to 36.02 and Ford dropped 0.48 to 17.02. In the home improvement sector Lowes went up 0.69 to 45.68 and Home Depot went up 0.23 to 78.97. With the exception of Dupont which went up 4.82 to 59.74 the big team sponsors were down for the week. Coca-Cola dropped 1.76 to 62.19, Target dropped 0.78 to 70.72, Aarons Rentals dropped 0.86 to 28.08 and Fedex dropped 0.93 to 108.22.

In TV Land this week: (Speed becomes FoxSports1 on Saturday)
 

8
14
Wed
12:00 PM
NSCS Replay
Watkins Glen
SPEED
 
8
15
Thu
11:00 PM
ARCA Race
Berlin
NBC Sports
 
8
16
Fri
12:00 PM
NSCS Practice
Michigan
SPEED
 
8
16
Fri
3:30 PM
NSCS Coors Light Pole Qualifying
Michigan
SPEED
 
8
17
Sat
8:30 AM
NSCS Practice
Michigan
FoxSports1
 
8
17
Sat
9:30 AM
NNS Coors Light Pole Qualifying
Mid-Ohio
ESPN2
 
8
17
Sat
9:30 AM
NCWTS Qualifying
Michigan
FoxSports1
 
8
17
Sat
11:00 AM
NSCS Final Practice
Michigan
FoxSports1
 
8
17
Sat
12:00 PM
NCWTS SetUp
Michigan
FoxSports1
 
8
17
Sat
12:30 PM
NCWTS: NCWTS 200
Michigan
FoxSports1
 
8
17
Sat
2:00 PM
NNS Countdown
Mid-Ohio
ESPN
 
8
17
Sat
2:30 PM
NNS: Nationwide Children's Hospital 200
Mid-Ohio
ESPN
 
8
18
Sun
10:00 AM
NASCAR Raceday
Michigan
FoxSports1
 
8
18
Sun
12:00 PM
NSCS Countdown
Michigan
ESPN
 
8
18
Sun
1:00 PM
NSCS: Pure Michigan 400
Michigan
ESPN
 


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 other publications for over 3 decades.

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