RPW Column: The Champ Trail: Speedweeks Finally Upon Us For Daytona & New Smyrna

Column By: PHIL SMITH / RPW – WESTERLY, RI – The Modifieds, 45 on the entry list, run at New Smyrna Speedway and started on Monday.

They will finish up with the Richie Evans 100 on Friday, Feb 12. NBC Track Pass will provide live nightly coverage.

Just to give anyone who signed up for NBC gold last year for New Smyrna, your subscription is probably good until May 2021.

The 2021 Schedule for the TV times of the Whelen Modified Tour Series :

Date

Location

TrackPass

Coverage

NBCSN Coverage

Time

Thu. April 8

Martinsville Speedway

Live – 8:00 PM

Wed. April 14

5:00 PM

Sun. April 25

Stafford Motor Speedway

Live – 6:00 PM

Thurs. April 29

6:00 PM

Sat. May 15

Riverhead Raceway

Live – 8:00 PM

Fri. May 21

5:00 PM

Sat. May 29

Jennerstown Speedway

Live – 7:30 PM

Wed. June 2

4:00 PM

Sat. June 12

Oswego Speedway

Live – 7:30 PM

Sun. June 20

10:00 AM

Sat. June 19

Riverhead Raceway

Live – 8:00 PM

Wed. June 23

4:00 PM

Sat. July 17

New Hampshire Motor Speedway

Live – 12:45 PM

Wed. Aug. 11

1:00 PM

Sat. July 31

New York International Raceway

Live – 8:00 PM

Wed. Aug. 11

2:00 PM

Fri. Aug. 6

Stafford Motor Speedway

Live – 9:15 PM

Sun. Aug. 15

9:30 PM

Sat. Aug 21

Beech Ridge Motor Speedway

Live – 7:30 PM

Sat. Aug. 28

5:00 PM

Sat. Sept. 4

Oswego Speedway

Live – 7:30 PM

Thurs. Sept. 9

6:00 PM

Fri. Sept. 10

Richmond Raceway

Live – 7:00 PM

Sat. Sept. 18

2:30 PM

Sat, Sep 18

Riverhead Raceway

Live – 8:00 PM

Wed, Sep 22

4:00 PM

Sun, Sep 26

Stafford Motor Speedway

Live – 6:00 PM

Fri, Oct 01

6:00 PM

Thursday, Feb 4 was practice day at the World Series of Asphalt and it was a busy one with one of the largest entry lists the event has seen in several years. In the Tour type Modified pit there were 45 entries including five from the upstate New York Catalano family. Among those turning in some hot laps were Anthony Noscella, Ryan Preece, Chuck Hossfeldt and Doug Coby to name a few. During the day, he announced he will be competing the entire week with Austin Pickens driving the No. 10 on Monday and Tuesday while Coby would jump into the machine the rest of the week. Both drivers spent Thursday’s session getting re-acclimated to the high banks of New Smyrna.

Opening night, on Friday was a little on the cool side, saw Ryan Moore going pole to pole in the Super Late Model feature. Ryan’s dad Kelly finished 11th. Other opening night winners were Jett Nolan on the Pro Lites, Travis Eddy in the Florida Modifieds, Mathew Green in the Sportsman and Dustin Higdon in the Bombers.

New Hampshire Super Late Model competitor scored a win on Saturday in a program that got a late start because of rain. Jett Nolan made it two in a row in the Pro Late Models as did Travis Eddy in the Florida Mods. Bryan Kruczek was victorious in the Sportsman division and Matt Jarrett was the E-Mod winner.

The 50-lap Sportsman race came down to a late-race shootout between New Hampshire driver Bryan Kruczek and local favorite Matthew Green. For the second night in a row, the two made contact racing for the win, with Kruczek initially prevailing at the end of Saturday’s race.

Crews from both teams voiced their displeasure with each other on the front stretch after the race and in the technical inspection area, where it would get physical. Both drivers were disqualified for unsportsmanlike conduct, giving the win to Wayne Smith. Multiple sources have confirmed that a track official at New Smyrna (Fla.) Speedway passed away early Sunday morning following Saturday night events at the World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing.

Reporter Matt Weaver of Autoweek and Short Track Scene posted on Twitter that an official track source confirmed to him that track official Rusty Crews died overnight. Crews had attempted to quell the situation. The Volusia County Sheriff’s Office has indicated that there is an ongoing investigation into what led to his death.

The Volusia County Sheriff’s Office said there is currently no evidence of “a direct link between Crews’ death and any specific actions of anyone involved in the altercation.” They added, following the fight and with the with the crowd dispersed and parties separated, witnesses said Crews sat down and began having a medical episode. A witness started performing CPR on Crews before an EMS crew arrived, took over CPR and transported Crews to the hospital.

Sunday night’s action at New Smyrna saw Sammy Smith take the Super Late Model feature, Conner Jones, the Pro Late Models, Tim Moore, the Florida Mods and Carsten Digiantonasso the 602s.

In some big news for weekly racing fans at the Stafford Motor Speedway the Arute family which operates the track and FloRacing are proud to announce a groundbreaking partnership to bring live racing from Stafford Speedway to the FloRacing platform. New for the 2021 season, all Stafford Speedway weekly events will be streamed live on FloRacing making Stafford the first asphalt track on the nationally recognized platform.

All Stafford Speedway events excluding the NASCAR Modified Tour and SRX Series will be broadcast live exclusively on FloRacing for the 2021 season beginning with the NAPA Auto Parts Opening Day Saturday, April 24th and running weekly through NAPA Auto Parts Championship Night on Friday, October 1st. The Stafford Speedway productions team will continue to produce the weekly broadcast streamed on FloRacing.

“The same first class production that race fans enjoyed on StaffordSpeedway.tv will move over to FloRacing,” explained Stafford Speedway COO Paul Arute. “Racing at Stafford Speedway will now be on a national stage alongside the Chili Bowl, Eldora Speedway, USAC Racing, and the All Star Circuit of Champions. FloRacing gives our fans the ultimate in live streaming access for just $150 per year.” Based on the fact that the Stafford schedule consists of 25 events the cost of viewing each event is only $6.00 which has to be the best deal in auto racing.

FloRacing is quickly becoming the leader in live streaming in grassroots racing with over 800 race events streamed in 2020 and over 1,000 scheduled to stream live in 2021. Stafford Speedway becomes the first pavement track added to the FloRacing lineup. Annual subscriptions to FloRacing include unlimited access to all live streaming content. Also included in a subscription are the exclusive interviews, behind-the-scenes access, and ride-alongs with drivers, motorsports news, archived races, and highlights that racing fans have come to expect from the FloRacing platform. FloRacing subscribers also receive complete access to the entire network of FloSports verticals ranging from cycling, wrestling, football, baseball, softball, grappling, rodeo and more. Watch the races across all screens by downloading the FloSports app on iOS, Android, Apple TV, Roku, Amazon Fire, and Chromecast.

In addition to broadcasting the 2021 Stafford Speedway season, FloRacing has posted $40,000 in bonus money which will be distributed to the Stafford Speedway weekly competitors. The FloRacing bonus will be awarded to each of the top-10 finishers across all 5 of Stafford Speedway’s weekly divisions on specified nights. Each division will have 4 events in which the FloRacing bonus will be awarded. The $40,000 bonus nearly doubles the payout teams received from StaffordSpeedway.tv in 2020.

NASCAR officials announced last week during the annual NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series promoters meeting that the sanctioning body is re-introducing regional championships to its weekly racing format. Champions will be crowned in four regions: Southeast, Northeast, Midwest and West.

Each Division I regional champion will receive a $15,000 prize for their achievement, with a total of $35,000 being paid out to the top-10 drivers in each region. A driver’s 14 best finishes within their respective regions will count towards regional championships. The NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series previously crowned regional champions from 1982 to 2004.

Race Party Remembering George Summers , Bob Potter, Mike Stefanik and George Pendergast, Feb 13 2021 4PM-11PM FREE BBQ. OPEN TO PUBLIC JOIN US AT THE BOAT BAR AMD LOUNGE 5395 S RIDGEWOOD AVE., PORT ORANGE FLORIDA.

In some sad news Rick Summers passed away on Thursday, February 4. Rick had been fighting Parkinsons disease when he contacted pneumonia which ultimately caused him to pass. Rick, who drove Modifieds and Late Models in his younger days, operated Summers Trucking with his mom Peggy after his father legendary driver George Summers passed away. Rick is survived by his wife Natalie, his mom, Peggy, his brother George Jr and sisters Mary and Kathy.

In 1967 the Stafford Motor Speedway was paved. The NASCAR Modifieds were the headline division. For 20 years thru 1986 Stafford would host and provide competition from the best in the business from throughout New England, New York State, Long Island and from the south. Names like Eddie Flemke, Bugsy Stevens, Fred DeSarro, Reggie Ruggerio, Ray Miller, Richie Evans, Maynard Troyer, Geoff Bodine, Charlie Jarzobeck, Greg Sacks, Wayne Anderson, Jamie Tomaino, Satch Worley and Ray Hendrick would be in the line-up and would record victories.

The all new book, The Modified Years At Stafford, by the Grace of God and 600 hp, is gaining interest and has become a must have in race fans and competitors library. Race by Race, Year by Year, it’s all there. Read all about it! Books are now available on Amazon.com and Coastal 181 (877-907-8181 toll free) and are available thru Stafford’s web site in their store. Order yours now. Makes a great gift!

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