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Tuesday October 8, 2013
 

By Phil Smith                                                                                             

It appears that the transition from the Thompson Speedway as we know it to the Club at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park will create a playground primarily for the wealthy. It has already been said that the oval track will host the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour at least three times in 2014, with events at the Icebreaker, the World Series and an event at some time during the summer.

The Club at Thompson will offer exclusive membership privileges to motorsport and golf enthusiasts. Different types of memberships are offered for sale including Individual Memberships for an initiation fee of $15,000, Annual dues of $2,500 and a Black Top fee of $165. For all of that one will receive a 2014 Season pass with VIP parking to all racing events, exclusive use of 30+ track days, priority Garage Rental Reservations, member guest driving, Raceway Golf Club Membership, priority Golf Cart Rental Reservations, discounted meals (15%) at The Raceway Golf Club Restaurant and professional instructors available for new drivers to help them learn and better their driving experience. The Club is tailored to an assortment of vehicles, and lifestyles, and will leave one wanting to come back for more.

Also available at The Club at Thompson are Junior Memberships for 18-25 Years Old: Membership can be converted to Family or Individual at 26. •Initiation Fee: $5,000, Annual Dues: $2,500 and Black Top Fee: $165, Family Memberships with full amenities which covers (1) member plus their spouse, and family members up to the age of 23 living at home. •Initiation Fee: $20,000•Annual Dues: $3,000 •Members / Guest Allowed and •Black Top Fee: $165, Group Membership •(3) Members – No required business affiliation. Must join, pay dues and fees jointly. Initiation Fee: $35,000•Annual Dues: $7,500 and Black Top Fee: $165 and Corporate Membership •(5) Members – Required business affiliation. Must join, pay dues, and fees jointly •Initiation Fee: $55,000•Annual Dues: $12,500 •Members / Guest Allowed and •Black Top Fee: $165.

Contract Term: 10 years with guaranteed renewal. Memberships are non-salable and non-transferable. Rates do NOT include CT Sales Tax. The Club at Thompson will be releasing a limited number of 200 memberships. To hold a spot before initiation fees are due this winter they are asking for a $2,500 refundable deposit that will be credited to your balance.

In a somewhat related matter, Josh Vanada of Walpole, MA has been named General Manager of the Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park. His responsibilities will include the renovated 1.7 mile road course that will open next year along with the historic 5/8ths mile oval track. Vanada has been part of the Thompson Speedway operational staff for five years and most recently served as the Director of Motorsports Operations. His new duties will include oversight of the day-to-day operations of both race tracks.

In addition to his work with Thompson’s NASCAR Whelen All-American Series, Vanada serves as Managing Event Director for the Granite State Pro Stock Series and held a similar role with the Valenti Modified Racing Series. He began his career at the Seekonk Speedway as the Assistant Starter some ten years ago.

It was also good to hear that Russ Dowd is still a vital part of the speedway staff as the Director of Operations and Public Relations. As the Speedway Announcer, Dowd is one of the best in the business.

Two big season ending events were held in southern New England this past weekend, the D.Anthony Venditti Memorial at the Seekonk Speedway and the Fall Finale at the Waterford Speedbowl.

The Valenti Modified Racing Series was at the Seekonk oval for a 100 lapper. The event, which saw Anthony Nocella score his first ever VMRS win, drew 32 cars. Nocella, who started 13th, inherited the lead following an incident between Chris Pasteryak and Tommy Barrett on lap 71. Pasteryak was leading when Barrett made a move on him. Contact was made and Barrett spun with a flat left rear tire. Pasteryak was sent to the rear of the pack for contact with Barrett which officials felt that caused him to spin. Steve Masse ended up in second spot at the finish. Les Hinkley finished third. Rounding out the top five were Rowan Pennink and Dwight Jarvis.

Todd Annarummo led from the drop of the green until displaced by Pasteryak after a restart on lap 30. Annarummo attempted to retake the lead on lap 32 but ended up in the wall with a trashed car. Annarummo said he missed the shift on the restart and his left rear tire went up over Chris Pasteryak's right front. The car was launched up in the air at a sharp 90 degree angle and he hit the right front very hard into the front stretch wall right near the started stand. Where he hit the car was right on the right front corner and the car was crushed . He was credited with 24th spot at the finish. Barrett ended up 19th and Chris Pasteryak, 14th.

Fourteen of the original 24 starters finished on the lead lap. The Valenti Modifieds head next to the Lee USA Speedway this coming weekend for another 100 lap modified race. In other Seekonk action a 100 lap Pro Stock event was won by Tom Scully Jr.

Over 200 race cars turned out for Waterford Speedbowl’s Finale Weekend, the annual close to the racing season at the shoreline oval.
In Saturday action at Waterford, Glenn Griswold captured the first Whelen All-American Series feature of Finale Weekend when he won the 25-lap SK Light Modified race. Other Saturday night winners were Kenny Johnson (NEMA Lights), Duane Noll (New England Truck Series), Waterford's Dan Butler (Super X-Cars), Dave Gargaro Jr. (X-Cars), Oakdale's Derek Debbis (Bandoleros) and Salem's Corey Hutchings (Outlaw Stocks).

Keith Rocco will have to wait another week before making history at the Waterford Speedbowl as the Sunday feature race program was suspended on lap 34 of the 50 lap Late Model feature because of heavy mist. Rocco is attempting to make history in the category of season total for victories. He had his 11th victory of the season in the Late Model division Saturday, Sept 28 and has 22 wins overall at the track this year. Don Collins set the track’s record for wins in a season with 23 in 1960. In what turned out to be a long day, At 4:50pm the plug was pulled. The program will be continued this coming Saturday night. Rain checks will be honored. Sunday winners included Mini Stock 50 – Ken Cassidy Jr., NEMA Midgets 25 – Winner: Bethany Stoehr and Legend Cars 25 –Dylan Izzo.

In NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour action, Seuss won his third straight race, Andy Seuss scored his 15th career tour win at the Southern National Speedway in North Carolina. He previously picked up wins at Caraway Speedway in Asheboro, N.C., on Sept. 8 and Sept. 28. The first victory broke a winless streak that extended almost a year. He hasn't stopped winning since. George Brunnhoelzl III finished second to extend his lead to 32 points over Kyle Ebersole, who finished fourth, with one race remaining. The season finale is Thursday, Oct. 10 on the quarter-mile on the frontstretch at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Burt Myers was third, followed by Ebersole and rookie Luke Fleming.

On the speedway stock market scene all three speedway stocks finished the week on the negative side. Taking the big dip was the International Speedway Corporation which dropped 0.79 to 31.57. Speedway Motorsports dropped 0.18 to 17.75 and Dover Entertainment dropped 0.05 to 2.35. NASCAR Cup sponsor Sprint went up 0.28 to 6.44 and NASCAR Tire supplier Goodyear went up 0.55 to 23.01 while NASCAR fuel supplier Sunoco (Energy Transfer) dropped 0.08 to 51.99. Two of the three car makers were down for the week. Ford went up 0.04 to 17.09 while General Motors dropped 0.67 to 35.70 and Toyota dropped 2.25 to 128.01. In the home improvement sector Home Depot dropped 0.18 to 75.78 while Lowes went up 0.37 to 48.14. In the area of big team sponsorship Fedex went up 0.96 to 114.73 and Aarons Rentals went up 0.15 to 27.75 while Dupont dropped 0.36 to 58.65, Coca-Cola dropped 2.38 to 60.98 and Target dropped 0.53 to 63.41.
 

In TV Land this week:
 
10
10
Thurs
2:00 AM
2:30 AM
NASCAR Now
 
ESPN2
 
10
10
Thurs
3:30 PM
5:00 PM
NSCS Practice
Charlotte
FS1
 
10
10
Thurs
6:00 PM
7:00 PM
NNS Final Practice
Charlotte
FS2
 
10
10
Thurs
7:00 PM
8:30 PM
NSCS Coors Light Pole Qualifying
Charlotte
ESPN2
 
10
11
Fri
2:00 AM
2:30 AM
NASCAR Now
 
ESPN2
 
10
11
Fri
12:00 PM
1:00 PM
NASCAR RaceHub
 
FS1
 
10
11
Fri
2:00 PM
3:00 PM
NASCAR K&N Pro Series
New Hampshire
FS2
 
10
11
Fri
3:00 PM
4:00 PM
NSCS Practice
Charlotte
FS2
 
10
11
Fri
4:00 PM
5:30 PM
NNS Coors Light Pole Qualifying
Charlotte
FS2
 
10
11
Fri
5:30 PM
7:00 PM
NSCS Final Practice
Charlotte
FS2
 
10
11
Fri
7:00 PM
7:30 PM
NNS Countdown
Charlotte
ESPN2
 
10
11
Fri
7:30 PM
10:30 PM
NNS: Dollar General 300
Charlotte
ESPN2
7:47 PM
10
12
Sat
2:30 AM
3:30 AM
NSCS Practice
Charlotte
FS1
 
10
12
Sat
3:30 AM
5:00 AM
NSCS Final Practice
Charlotte
FS1
 
10
12
Sat
5:00 AM
6:00 AM
NASCAR K&N Pro Series
New Hampshire
FS1
 
10
12
Sat
7:00 PM
7:30 PM
NSCS Countdown
Charlotte
ABC
 
10
12
Sat
7:30 PM
11:30 PM
NSCS: Bank of America 500
Charlotte
ABC
7:46 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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