Story By: SCOTT RUNNING / STAFFORD MOTOR SPEEDWAY – STAFFORD SPRINGS, CT – Stafford Speedway returned to NASCAR Whelen All-American Series racing action on Friday, August 21st with Open Modified cars in the house for the Lincoln Tech Open Mod 80.
Todd Owen took down his first win of 2020 in the SK Modified® feature, Darrell Keane was a first time 2020 winner in the Late Model feature, Alexander Pearl scored his second 2020 win in the SK Light feature, Alexandra Fearn was a first time 2020 winner in the Limited Late Model feature, and Jason Lafayette won for the second time this season in the Street Stock feature.
In the 40-lap SK Modified® feature event, Tyler Leary took the lead at the green with Mikey Flynn in second. David Arute and Matt Vassar were side by side for third with Andrew Molleur in fifth. Vassar took third and Molleur got around Arute on lap-3 to take third while up front Flynn took the lead from Leary. Vassar moved into second with Tony Membrino, Jr. and Leary side by side for third and Keith Rocco up to fifth.
Rocco went by Leary on lap-7 to move up to fourth just behind Membrino in third while Flynn and Vassar were still leading the field. The caution flew with 9 laps complete for a spin on the backstretch by Cory DiMatteo.
Flynn took the lead on the restart and he led until lap-13 when Membrino went to the front. Right behind Membrino was Todd Owen with Flynn fading back to third in line. Molleur was fourth with Rocco in fifth when the caution came back out with 15 laps complete for a spin in the middle of turns 3+4 by Arute.
Owen took the lead on the restart with Membrino slotting into second. Flynn was third with Molleur right on his back bumper in fourth and Rocco was fifth. Molleur went by Flynn to take third place on lap-17 and Rocco would get by Flynn to move into fourth on lap-21 as Owen continued to hold the race lead with Membrino in second. The caution came back out with 22 laps complete for a spin in turn 2 by Vassar. Michael Christopher, Jr. was sent to the rear of the field for making contact with Vassar.
Owen again took command of the race back under green with Molleur taking second. Membrino was third followed by Rocco and Chase Dowling. Marcello Rufrano did a half-spin and came to a stop on the backstretch to bring the caution back out with 25 laps complete.
Owen powered into the lead on the restart while Membrino pulled alongside Molleur for second. Molleur held onto second and cleared Membrino on lap-28 while Rocco was now on the outside of Membrino in a fight for third. Just behind Rocco and Membrino was Dowling and Ronnie Williams side by side for fifth. Membrino got clear to third on lnap-30 with Rocco getting clear of Dowling for fourth on lap-32.
Rocco went to the outside of Membrino on lap-33 for third place with Williams and Dowling still fighting side by side behind them for fifth as Owen and Molleur were starting to pull away with all the side by side action going on behind them.
With 3 laps to go, Owen and Molleur were the top-2 cars followed by Membrino, Rocco, Williams, and Dowling. Rocco finally was able to make a pass stick on Membrino to move into third on lap-38. Owen led Molleur to the checkered flag to pick up his first win of the 2020 season. Rocco finished third with Williams nipping Membrino at the line to finish fourth.
In the 30-lap Late Model feature event, Ryan Fearn spun through the frontstretch infield to bring the caution out right at the start. Marc Curtis led the first lap on the restart before giving way to Darrell Keane on lap-2. Michael Wray was third in the early going followed by Rick Lanagan and Duane Provost. Al Saunders was sixth in line with John Blake, Paul Arute, Adam Gray, and Michael Bennett making up the top-10.
With 10 laps complete the order was still Keane in the lead followed by Curtis, Michael Wray, Lanagan, Provost, Al Saunders, Gray, Blake, Ryan Fearn, and Arute. Gray took fourth from Lanagan on lap-21 and his move opened the door for Saunders, Ryan Fearn, and Bennett to all get by Lanagan as he fell from fourth back to eighth in line with Keane still leading Curtis.
Gray got around Curtis to move into second place on lap-28 but he didn’t have enough time to close down the gap to Keane as Keane scored his first win of the 2020 season. Ryan Fearn charged his way up to third at the checkered flag after his spin at the start of the race with Curtis and Bennett rounding out the top-5.
In the 20-lap SK Light feature event, the caution came out right at the start as Nicole Chambrello took a trip through the frontstretch grass. Wesley Prucker took the early lead on the restart with Robert Bloxsom, III right on his back bumper in second. Bob Charland was third with Joey Ferrigno and Peter Bennett side by side for fourth place.
Bloxsom pulled to the outside of Prucker on lap-4 and he took over the race lead. Prucker slotted into second with Charland third and Ferrigno and Bennett still side by side for fourth with 6 laps complete. Bennett got the better of the duel on lap-7 but George Bessette, Jr. went by both cars to take over fourth on lap-8. Bessette powered his way around Charland to take over third on lap-10 and he set his sights on Prucker and Bloxsom in the lead. The caution flew with 10 laps complete for a spin in the middle of turns 3+4 by James Houghton.
The caution came right back out on the restart as Amanda West and Mark Bakaj both spun on the backstretch. Bloxsom took the lead on the restart with Prucker in second. Bessette and Andrew Les were side by side for third Nick Anglace and Alexander Pearl side by side for fourth. The caution came back out with 12 laps complete as West, Houghton, Steven Chapman, and Anthony Forino all spun coming off turn 4.
Prucker took the lead on the outside of Bloxsom on the restart with Bessette moving up to second. The caution came back out with 13 laps complete for an incident in turn 2 involving the cars of Tyler Chapman, Josh Carey and Jonathan Puleo.
Bloxsom didn’t come up to speed on the restart and dropped all the way to the rear of the field while Bessette took the lead with Anglace right behind him in second. Pearl took third with Prucker falling back to fourth, just in front of Bennett.
Pearl powered his way to the inside of Bessette for the lead on lap-17 but Bessette was able to hold him off. Pearl had the lead by a nose at the line to complete lap-18 and he cleared Bessette on lap-19. Bessette was right on Pearl’s bumper as they took the white flag with Anglace right there in third. Bessette and Pearl touched bumpers in turn 4 but Pearl was able to hold Bessette off and score his second win of the 2020 season. Anglace finished third with Bennett and Prucker rounding out the top-5.
In the 20-lap Limited Late Model feature event, Gary Patnode shot into the lead from his fifth place starting position with Jeremy Lavoie taking second behind him. Lucas Leone was third followed by Andrew Durand and Alexandra Fearn. Fearn took third on lap-3 and she took the lead from Patnode on lap-6. Lavoie followed her by Patnode as did Durand with Patnode slipping back to fourth.
Patnode slowly continued to slide backwards as Matt Clement took fourth and Leone took fifth to drop Patnode back to sixth in line just after the halfway point of the race on lap-11. The top-5 ran to the checkered flag unchanged with Fearn picking up her first win of the 2020 season. Lavoie finished second with Durand, Clement, and Leone rounding out the top-5.
In the 20-lap Street Stock feature event, George Yuska shot by polesitter Chris Danielczuk to take the lead but the caution came out before the first lap could be completed for a spin in turn 4 by Daltin McCarthy. Yuska again took the lead on the restart with Nickolas Hovey looking to take second but the caution came out again for a spin in turn 3 by Adrien Paradis, III and Kyle Johnson before the first lap could be completed.
Danielczuk took the lead on the restart but Yuska powered his way to the lead by the time the leaders hit the stripe to complete lap-1. Hovey was up to second with Jason Lafayette in third. Meghan Fuller was fourth with Zack Robinson up to fifth as Danielczuk slid all the way back to 11th place.
Hovey took the lead from Yuska on lap-4 with Fuller now third, Robinson fourth, and Paradis fifth. The positions continued to shuffle on lap-7 as Robinson took second and Fuller third as Yuska slid back to fourth just in front of Paradis as Hovey continued to hold the lead.
Robinson took the lead from Hovey on lap-10 and he brought Fuller with him into second as Hovey slid back to third. Fuller made a move to the inside of Robinson on lap-12 and she took the lead with a pass in turn 4. Robinson and Fuller touched in turn 1 with Fuller spinning and collecting the car of Paradis to bring the caution out with 12 laps complete. Robinson was sent to the rear of the field for the contact with Fuller.
Lafayette took the lead on the restart with Hovey back to second. Frank L’Etoile, Jr. was up to third with Larry Barnett fourth and Brandon Michael fifth. L’Etoile took second from Hovey on lap-14 and he began to look for a way to get around Lafayette and take over the lead.
With 2 laps to go, L’Etoile was right on Lafayette’s back bumper with Hovey in third, Barnett fourth, and Michael fifth. L’Etoile could get to Lafayette’s bumper but he couldn’t make a pass as Lafayette scored his second win of the 2020 season. Hovey finished third with Michael fourth and Barnett fifth.
SK MODIFIED® (40)
1) Todd Owen, Somers
2) Andrew Molleur, Shelton
3) Keith Rocco, Berlin
4) Ronnie Williams, Tolland
5) Tony Membrino, Jr., Wolcott
6) Chase Dowling, Midland, NC
7) Mikey Flynn, Hampden, MA
8) Michael Christopher, Jr., Wolcott
9) Troy Talman, Oxford, MA
10) Glen Reen, Wilbraham, MA
11) Teddy Hodgdon, Danbury
12) Cory DiMatteo, Farmington
13) Tyler Hines, North Haven
14) Matt Vassar, Plantsville
15) Bryan Narducci, Colchester
16) Marcello Rufrano, North Haven
17) Matt Gallo, Kensington
18) David Arute, Stafford Springs
19) Todd Patnode, Swanzey, NH
20) Tyler Leary, Hatfield, MA
21) Jeff Malave, Manchester
22) John Catania, Agawam, MA
23) Fran Siana, Enfield
24) Michael Gervais, Jr., Wolcott
LATE MODEL (30)
1) Darrell Keane, Enfield
2) Adam Gray, Granby, MA
3) Ryan Fearn, East Longmeadow, MA
4) Marc Curtis, Brookfield, MA
5) Michael Bennett, Willington
6) Al Saunders, Stafford
7) Michael Wray, Northford
8) Tyler Leary, Hatfield, MA
9) Rick Lanagan, Broad Brook
10) John Blake, North Haven
11) Wayne Coury, Jr., Fairfield
12) Tom Fearn, East Longmeadow, MA
13) Dave Wray, Durham
14) Paul Arute, Northridge, MA
15) Gregory Demone, Ludlow, MA
16) R.J. Surdell, Willington
17) Duane Provost, Palmer, MA
18) Cliff Saunders, Stafford
19) Gary Theriault, Enfield
20) Paul Varricchio, Jr., Berlin
SK LIGHT MODIFIED (20)
1) Alexander Pearl, Salem
2) George Bessette, Jr., Danbury
3) Nick Anglace, Oxford
4) Peter Bennett, Cromwell
5) Wesley Prucker, Stafford
6) Andrew Les, Palmer, MA
7) Steven Chapman, Ellington
8) Derek Debbis, Oakdale
9) Joey Ferrigno, East Hartford
10) Norm Sears, Andover
11) Robert Bloxsom, III, Stratford
12) Mark Bakaj, Lebanon
13) James Houghton, Springfield, MA
14) Nathan Pytko, Douglas, MA
15) Glenn Bartkowski, Manchester
16) Bob Charland, Stafford
17) Paul French, Andover
18) Todd Clark, Bristol
19) Jonathan Puleo, Branford
20) Tyler Chapman, Ellington
21) Josh Carey, East Longmeadow, MA
22) Alina Bryden, West Springfield, MA
23) Anthony Forino, Waterbury
24) Amanda West, Colchester
25) Nicole Chambrello, Kensington
26) Ethan Durocher, Canterbury
27) Todd Douillard, Palmer, MA
LIMITED LATE MODEL (20)
1) Alexandra Fearn, East Longmeadow, MA
2) Jeremy Lavoie, Windsor Locks
3) Andrew Durand, Chicopee, MA
4) Matt Clement, Wethersfield
5) Lucas Leone, Southington
6) Jay Clement, Wethersfield
7) Gary Patnode, New Hartford
8) Rich Hammann, Tolland
9) Damian Palardy, Willington
STREET STOCK (20)
1) Jason Lafayette, Somers
2) Frank L’Etoile, Jr., Wethersfield
3) Nickolas Hovey, Chaplin
4) Brandon Michael, Granville, MA
5) Zack Robinson, Putnam
6) Larry Barnett, Moosup
7) Kyle Johnson, Manchester
8) Chris Meyer, North Franklin
9) Chris Danielczuk, Goshen
10) Marvin Minkler, Stamford
11) Christopher Phelps, New Salem, MA
12) Ryan North, New Britain
13) John Nunes, Middletown
14) Thomas Hanley, Winsted
15) Meghan Fuller, Auburn, MA
16) Adrien Paradis, III, Plainville
17) George Yuska, S. Glastonbury
18) David Macha, Sr., Columbia
19) Jason Finkbein, Manchester
20) Daltin McCarthy, Oxford, MA