Story By: PAUL ARUTE / STAFFORD MOTOR SPEEDWAY – STAFFORD SPRINGS, CT – For the fourth consecutive year, the Dunleavy’s Truck and Trailer Repair Gambler’s Challenge will return to the NAPA Auto Parts SK 5K on Friday, June 29th.
Since the Inaugural NAPA SK 5K in 2013, the 100 lap, $5,000 guaranteed to win event has become a signature on the Stafford Speedway schedule. Once again added to the purse will be the Dunleavy’s Gamblers Challenge, a program that has drivers post $100 into a pot that is then matched by Doug Dunleavy of Dunleavy’s Truck and Trailer Repair. In each of the last 3 seasons, the bonus has climbed to over $5,000. The Gambler’s Bonus is distributed to either the winner, evenly across the top 5, top 10, or 10th through 20th. The winner will draw from a hat in victory lane to see how the bonus will be distributed.
“The gambler’s challenge is a fun bonus for the SK Modified® teams,” explained Doug Dunleavy of Dunleavy’s Truck and Trailer Repair. “Anyone can win it, one year Teddy won $10,000 and another year Ryan Preece won $12,000. But its not just for the winners, last year everyone from 6th to 10th got an additional $500, it’s all about the draw in victory lane.”
Entering its fifth year, the NAPA Auto Parts SK 5K has produced 4 different winners with Rowan Pennink, Ryan Preece, Ted Christopher, and Chase Dowling all notching NAPA SK 5K trophies. Notably missing from that winners list are a few of Stafford’s top SK Modified® drivers including Eric Berndt, Ronnie Williams, and Keith Rocco. Rocco, who started the 2018 season with four consecutive wins, has the June 29th 100 lap NAPA SK 5K circled on his calendar and has already entered the Dunleavy’s Gambler’s Challenge.
“Everyone wants to win the the SK 5K,” said Rocco. “At the end of the day it’s just another race with a few more laps but it’s definitely a big payday. Winning the NAPA SK 5K is at the top of our priority list for sure. The Gambler’s Challenge is pretty impressive when you think about it, close to 100% of the drivers all get in on it and it’s a nice bonus for everyone. Doug Dunleavy is a true modified guy and he really loves racing and us racers are very lucky to have someone like Doug do what he does for the sport and Stafford Speedway. It would be great to add the SK 5K to our win list and we’re going to do everything we can in our power to try to win the race. We have a car that is good lap after lap and the 40 lap races don’t really give us a chance of what we’re capable of doing so I think the extra distance will play into our favor.”
Teams and drivers can enter the Dunleavy Truck and Trailer Repair Gambler’s Challenge online by going to https://www.staffordmotorspeedway.com/2018-stafford-speedway-number-registration/ or by calling the track office at 860-684-2783.
The 5th annual NAPA Auto Parts SK 5K is set for Friday, June 29. With $5,000 guaranteed to win and over $30,000 in posted awards, the 100-lap big money race will be an event not to miss. Discount tickets for the NAPA SK 5k are available at participating NAPA Auto Parts stores. For a full list of the 72 participating locations throughout Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York, Rhode Island, and Vermont, please call the speedway office or visit us on the web at www.staffordmotorspeedway.com/participating-napa-auto-parts-stores. Tickets for the NAPA SK 5K are available and on sale now at the Speedway Box Office. Tickets are priced at $30.00 for adult general admission tickets, $5.00 for kids ages 6-14, and kids 5 and under are admitted free of charge when accompanied by an adult. Reserved seating is priced at $32.00 for all ages. All ticket prices include 10% CT Admission Tax. Stafford Speedway offers free parking with free overnight parking for self-contained RV’s available. There will also be a barbeque taking place on the midway with some great food available to race fans for only $10.