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Tuesday July 16, 2013
 

By Phil Smith                                                                                             

The Thompson Speedway Thursday Night Thunder Series resumed under threatening skies. John Lowinski-Loh, Steve Kenneway and Chad Baxter all captured their first season wins on Whelen Engineering night in Thursday Night Thunder at Thompson (TNTT). Other NASCAR Whelen All-American Series winners included Keith Rocco in the Sunoco Modified division with his fourth victory of the season and John Studley in the Lite Modifieds.

Rocco used a late-race restart to take down his fourth victory of the 2013 season as he held off Ryan Preece and Todd Ceravolo for the win. A caution flew at lap 28 for a car in the turn three wall setting up a two-lap dash to the checkers. Rocco drove to the front again with Ceravolo and Preece battling for the second spot right behind him. Preece took the second spot with Woody Pitkat taking over third before the checkers fell. Ceravolo ended up fourth with Kerry Malone, fifth.

At the Stafford Motor Speedway on Friday night held a special Girls Night Out program featuring each division racing an extra two laps as part of the 5-Star Series Mid-Season Stretch. Keith Rocco scored his first victory of the 2013 season in the 42-lap SK Modified® feature, Tom Fearn picked up his third win of the 2013 season in the 32-lap Late Model feature, Chase Dowling scored his second consecutive victory and fourth overall win of the 2013 season in the 22-lap SK Light Modified feature, Josh Wood picked up his third win of the 2013 season in the 22-lap Limited Late Model feature, and Jeremy Lavoie took down his third win of the season in the 17-lap DARE Stock feature.

In the SK Modified race, Rocco led Todd Owen back to the checkered flag to pick up his first victory of the 2013 season. Eric Berndt finished third, with Rowan Pennink and Woody Pitkat rounding out the top-5.

The Waterford Speedbowl did not race on Saturday night as they gave way to New London's Sailfest and Fireworks. On Friday evening the shoreline oval hosted the inaugural Belltown Tire Service Center Little Guys 200, putting four of the track’s support divisions into the spotlight. Open competition Mini Stock and Street Stock events paid each winner $1,000.00. Corey Hutchings was the Street Stock event winner and Glen Thomas Jr. took the checkered flag in the night’s Mini Stock race. Giovanni Giarratana won his third INEX Legend Cars event in the last four at the track and Brad Voglesong won the X-Car race. Belltown Tire Service Center put on a Pit Crew Challenge on the track’s front chute between races, won by the team of Glen Thomas Jr.

The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Series headed to the New Hampshire Motor Speedway for the Town Fair Tire 100. The event drew 32 cars for 36 open starting positions. Jimmy Blewett secured his first pole at the “Magic Mile” on his first lap of qualifying at 29.691 seconds (128.281 mph), but his No. 76 John Blewett Incorporated Chevrolet wrecked hard into the wall in the second circuit. Blewett hit a batch of dirt on the track that had not been cleaned up by the track crew. Blewett stated as he was coming around turn two he cut a right front tire in the dirt from the Global Rally Cars that had raced on Thursday night.

Ted Christopher qualified second-fastest at 29.783 (127.885). Bryon Chew joined him on the qualifying podium with a fast lap of 29.806 (127.786) around the 1.058-mile oval. Rounding out the top five were Bobby Santos and Eric Goodale.

Defending series champion Doug Coby nipped Ted Christopher by .153-seconds to score the win in Saturday’s Town Fair Tire 100 at the New Hampshire one-mile oval. It was the eighth career win for Coby but the first since last September, also at New Hampshire. It was a redemption of sort as Coby was a victim of a stuck throttle at Riverhead Raceway on Long Island which resulted in his car being trashed in a violent wreck. Coby started 15th and worked his way to the front. He drove the No. 52 Furnace & Duct Supply/Seekonk Grand Prix Chevrolet of Wayne Darling past Ryan Preece with four laps to go to take the lead and eventual win. Preece faded to third as Ted Christopher put Ole Blu in the runner-up spot on the closing moments. During the first half of the event Christopher and Rowan Pennink put on a brilliant and very competitive show of their driving skills as they swapped the lead at high speed numerous times. Pennink was robbed of a good finish as his car developed front end problems and after being put to the rear, finished 15th, two laps down. Andy Seuss and Ryan Newman rounded out the top five at the finish. Sixth thru tenth were Woody Pitkat, Eric Berndt, Chuck Hossfeld, Richie Pallai,, Jr and Jamie Tomaino.

The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour will return to the track Saturday, July 27 with the Town Fair Tire Whitcomb 200 at Monadnock Speedway in Winchester, N.H. The race is a makeup date for a rain out on May 11.

The Valenti Modified Racing Series was at the Canaan Fair Speedway in New Hampshire. With the field at 27 cars strong Tom Barrett scored his second win of the season. Barrett started on the pole but did not have an easy time of it as he swapped the lead on numerous occasions with the likes of Richard Savory and Chris Pasteryak. Pasteryak ended up second with Anthony Nocella, third. Rob Goodenough and Charlie Pasteryak rounded out the top five. Sixth through tenth were Savory, Louis Mechalides, Rowan Pennink, Todd Patnoad and Todd Owen.

The intense heat on Long Island brought out some short tempers at the Riverhead Raceway. To start, there were 2 cautions before a lap could be completed, eliminating three of the original 15 starters. On the restart after the 3rd caution, officials determined that the #0 of Tommy Rogers jumped the start and he was sent to the rear. Rogers took a hissy fit as he did not agree and showed his displeasure by spinning the car around in front of the officials to discuss it with them.

After the next caution flew, it got nasty. Tommy Rogers lost his temper and decided that he was going to end Kevin Orlando's evening. Unfortunately, Tommy didn't think he did a good enough job and returned to the track after pitting, coming out with the only intention to wreck Kevin Orlando's car. To do what was done put many people in danger, both on the track and in the pits, and is unacceptable. It will be interesting to see what action will be taken by track and NASCAR officials.

After the dust settled, the #96 of Howie Brode set the pace and was never headed.

Down in the southland at the Bowman Gray Stadium in Winston-Salem, NC Jason Myers went pole to pole to win the scheduled 100 lapper that 121 laps because of cautions. Intermittent rain made a long night longer. Myers hung tough through it all and won for the 13th time in his career, holding off Danny Bohn, Jonathan Brown and Junior Miller.

Jason’s brother Burt, the Modified points’ leader, finished fifth. He did some excellent driving, moving up after drawing the 17th starting position, and still leads the standings by 30 points, ahead of his younger brother. Tim Brown, the defending division champion and a nine-time season champ, had his mechanical problems on lap 99 and wound up 16th.

On the speedway stock market scene last week all three speedway stocks had positive results. Speedway Motorsports led the way as they went up 0.97 to 18.96. The International Speedway Corporation went up 0.16 to 34.27 and Dover Motorsports went up 0.03 to 2.20. NASCAR Cup sponsor Sprint dropped 0.52 to 6.64 while NASCAR fuel supplier Sunoco (Energy Transfer) went up 2.28 to 52.50 and NASCAR tire supplier Goodyear went up 0.74 to 16.60. The car makers had a very good week. Leading the way was Toyota which went up 4.42 to 129.69. General Motors went up 1.63 to 36.40 and Ford went up 0.41 to 17.11. In the home improvement sector Home Depot went up 2.25 to 80.54 and Lowes went up 1.05 to 43.83. The major team sponsors were also in the green at week's end. Dupont went up 1.41 to 54.41, Coca-Cola went up 1.54 to 63.08, Target went up 2.31 to 72.56, Aarons Rentals went up 1.40 to 29.68 and Fedex went up 3.33 to 102.29.
 

Racing on the tube:
 
7
17
Wed
12:00 PM
3:00 PM
NSCS Replay
New Hampshire
SPEED
 
7
17
Wed
6:00 PM
7:00 PM
NASCAR Race Hub
 
SPEED
 
7
17
Wed
11:30 PM
12:00 AM
NASCAR Now
 
ESPN2
 
7
18
Thurs
7:00 AM
8:00 AM
NASCAR Race Hub
 
SPEED
 
7
18
Thurs
12:00 PM
2:30 PM
NNS Replay
New Hampshire
SPEED
 
7
18
Thurs
2:30 PM
3:00 PM
The 10
 
SPEED
 
7
18
Thurs
6:00 PM
7:00 PM
NASCAR Race Hub
 
SPEED
 
7
19
Fri
1:00 AM
1:30 AM
NASCAR Now
 
ESPN2
 
7
19
Fri
7:00 AM
8:00 AM
NASCAR Race Hub
 
SPEED
 
7
19
Fri
6:00 PM
7:00 PM
A Racer's Life: Richard Childress
 
SPEED
 
7
21
Sun
11:00 AM
12:00 PM
NNS Coors Light Pole Qualifying
Chicago
ESPN2
 
7
21
Sun
2:30 PM
3:00 PM
NNS Countdown
Chicago
ESPN
 
7
21
Sun
3:00 PM
5:30 PM
NNS: STP 300
Chicago
ESPN
3:17 PM


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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