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Archive for August, 2017

Down to the Wire: Mikitarian Captures Speedbowl NEMA Lites Victory

Thursday, August 31st, 2017

Ben Mikitarian fended off fellow competitor Jake Stergios in an epic battle that raged down to the final lap, in a three wide battle, that saw Mikitarian crossing the line first. It was the third straight race at the New London Waterford Speedbowl that has come down to the winner being decided on the final lap. It was Mikitarian’s second career, and also second win of the season, the first of which came at Star Speedway earlier this season.

The evening started with Mikitarian and five time NEMA champion, Randy Cabral, taking down heat race wins. Ryan Locke, who finished second to Cabral, turned in the fastest lap of the heat events at 13.96 seconds. Mikitarian and points leader, Jim Chambers, were also in the sub 14 second bracket, particularly fast times for the Speedbowl.

When the green flag flew in the feature, Chris Vose and Dennis O’Brien brought the field to green. O’Brien quickly jumped out into the lead, but further back, sixth place starter Ben Mikitarian in the New England Truck Solutions #9, was using the outside line to move to the front. By lap two, Mikitarian was second, and by lap three, he used the outside line in turn three to get by O’Brien.

As the laps wound down, battles were happening throughout what would end up being a green to checkered feature. Paul Scally, Dan Cugini and points leader Chambers were all battling for a spot on the podium, while Ryan Locke was moving through the field toward the top five, fighting a loose race car.

At the front, Stergios began to close the gap, as Mikitarian approached lapped traffic. With five to go, Stergios looked low on Mikitarian, but Mikitarian got a clean run off of the corner to maintain the lead. With two to go, the duo approached a group of lapped cars, and by the front stretch, Mikitarian went high, and Stergios low, splitting Richie Coy, in a three wide battle. Mikitarian would maintain the momentum and come out on top, beating Stergios back to the line. Paul Scally would finish third, followed by Dan Cugini, Jim Chambers, Ryan Locke, Randy Cabral, John Zych, Jim Cataldo and Richie Coy.

“The high side was working really good for me, and the car was perfect up there. I knew we had to get to the front quickly, as a number of the fast guys were starting behind me. As we got into lapped traffic, Jake poked it in under me a couple of times, and I had to really pour it all on. When we approached the lap car on the final lap, I just drove it in as hard as I could and we held on for the win,” said Mikitarian. “I really need to thank my Mom and Dad for all they do for me, and also New England Truck Solutions,” he said.

“My car was coming in good at the end, and I got a couple of good runs there at the end on Ben. He was getting through lapped traffic really well, and I knew I had to do something. I made it three wide, but Ben had the momentum and came out on top. Great job to him and his team,” said Stergios.

NEMA and the NEMA Lites pick back up this Saturday at the Iron Mike Scrivani Memorial at Monadnock Speedway.

71 The Magic Number at Stateline Speedway!

Thursday, August 31st, 2017

For the sixteenth consecutive week, Stateline Speedway and their dedicated fans were greeted with another night of great racing. With a Pepsi Night promotion full of giveaways and a Sugar Grove Beverage Outlaw E-Mod and Shults Auto Group RUSH Crate Late Model Mystery Team race on the card. The action on the smooth surface was great, as Dennis Lunger Jr went onto to win yet another Rusted Nutz RUSH Pro Mod feature event. In the RUSH Crate Late Model division, Lunger Jr again found victory lane, pulling the double for the second time this season. John Woodward Jr made it two in a row for the Sugar Grove Beverage Outlaw E-Mods while Max Blair continued to stifle the competition in the Overhead Door of Jamestown Super Late Models. John Boardman chalked up another victory under his belt in the Wellington Log Homes Street Stock division, while Dan Nocero Jr captured the Super Sportsman feature event. Andy Proper found his way back to victory lane in the Bailey’s Towing and Recovery Challenger division. Al Brewer and Dennis Lunger Jr were the mystery team race champions.

Gustin hits jackpot at Casino Speedway, wins Sandy Benson Memorial

Thursday, August 31st, 2017

WATERTOWN, S.D.–Ryan Gustin took control at the drop of the green flag and then held off a swarm of challengers Sunday night en route to winning the 2nd Annual Sandy Benson Memorial and his first USMTS victory at the Casino Speedway in Watertown, S.D.

‘The Reaper’ got the advantage over polesitter Tim Johnson to start the race, but Johnson never let Gustin out of his cross-hairs for most of the race.

Cautions of laps 12, 25 and 37 kept the field close behind Gustin, and the final yellow flag with three laps to go made for a mad three-lap dash around the 1/4-mile bullring.

For his tenth win of the 2017 campaign and 89th of his United States Modified Touring Series career, Gustin pocketed $4,500.

Stormy Scott kept his hopes alive for a USMTS national title with a runner-up finish while Cade Dillard came from the 11th starting spot to finish third. Johnson held on for fourth and Rodney Sanders claimed the fifth spot.

In search of his third straight USMTS crown, Jason Hughes nabbed sixth at the finish line ahead of Zack VanderBeek, Dereck Ramirez, Jon Tesch and Jake Timm.

Making just his second start this year and third in nearly two years, Tesch climbed from 19th on the starting grid to finish ninth and earned the KSE Racing Products Hard Charger Award.

The Wehrs Machine & Racing Products ‘Trick Move’ of the Race Award went to the field’s only female driver, Morgan Ward, who garnered the most passing points among the 34 entries in five heat races.

Just six races remain in the USMTS Hunt for the Casey’s Cup powered by S&S Fishing & Rental. The final surge begins this Wednesday, Aug. 30, when the USMTS returns to the Kossuth County Speedway in Algona, Iowa, for the first time since 2010.

Wednesday, Aug. 30 – Kossuth County Speedway, Algona, Iowa
Thursday, Aug. 31 – Fairmont Raceway, Fairmont, Minn.
Friday, Sept. 1 – Fayette County Speedway, West Union, Iowa
Saturday, Sept. 2 – Deer Creek Speedway, Spring Valley, Minn.
Sunday, Sept. 3 – Cresco Speedway, Cresco, Iowa
Thursday, Sept. 21 – Deer Creek Speedway, Spring Valley, Minn.

The 2017 USMTS national champion will emerge following the final race of The Hunt and the first night of the 19th Annual Featherlite Fall Jamboree on Thursday, Sept. 21, at the Deer Creek Speedway in Spring Valley, Minn.

To learn more about the United States Modified Touring Series, visit online or call 515-832-7944. You can also like us on Facebook at, follow us on Twitter at and Instagram at or subscribe to our YouTube channel at Keep up to speed with everything USMTS by joining our email list at

Father And Son Battle It Out In The Mr. Rooter Truck Series

Thursday, August 31st, 2017

WATERFORD, CT: Keith Rocco had a very trying day this Saturday at The Speedbowl. Because he team just finished up making the final repairs to his SK Modified from last week’s mishap, he arrived late to the speedway. Then after making contact with the #07 Stephen Masse Rocco had to head pit side for repairs to the right front of the #88. Rocco finally caught leader Todd Owens in the #81 Cooker’s Construction sponsored machine and battled side by side for the lead. As the caution flag appeared to slow do the event, it now set up a Green-white-checkered with Rocco sitting on the outside of Owens. The race again would be slowed three more times and on the fifth Green-white-checkered restart it looked like it would be all Owns as he grabbed the lead and was holding Rocco at bay. Rocco in his Wheeler’s Auto sponsored #88 got around Owens exiting turn four and grabbed the win in the 35-lap feature. With the win, Rocco was able to grab the point lead away from Kyle James. “We had a good car, Todd runs very tough here but we are here to win,” comment Rocco in victory lane. Rounding out the top-5 were Rocco, Owens, Matt Galko, Matt Gallo and Paul Buzel. Qualifying wins earlier went to Owens and Galko.

In the 30-lap Late Model feature it was Berlin, CT’s Jason Palmer taking down the win in his return to The Speedbowl. It was Palmer’s first win of the season. It wasn’t an easy win, Palmer had to battle the #25 of Anthony Flannery during the closing laps the duo raced side by side until Palmer was able to muscle out front and held on for the victory. Rounding out the top-5 were Palmer, Flannery, Tyler Chapman, Keith Rocco and Tony Macrino. The field was set by Group Qualifying lead by Palmer.

It was 64-year old Nicholas Pappacoda taking the win in the 25-lap Mini Stock feature. It was win number one for the North Branford driver. Pappacoda started on the pole and pushed out to the lead. Pappacoda had to survive five restarts and a battle with the #20 of Wayne Burroughs Jr for the win. On the last and final restart Burroughs was able to get inside of the #6 machine of Pappacoda and led a lap until something let go in the rear end section of Burroughs machine giving back the lead to Pappacoda along with the win. Rounding out the top-5 were Pappacoda, Charles Canfield, Jacob Perry, Ken Cassidy Jr and Mark Panaroni. Taking down the heats were Pappacoda and Perry.

Ryan Waterman wasted no time showing who had the dominate car for the 26-lap Limited Sportsman feature. The Danielson, CT driver grabbed the lead on a lap-2 restart and pulled away from the field. For Waterman, he had to survive five restarts over the course of the first few laps of the event. Point leader Chris Meyer was involved in two of those cautions and was in and out of the pits for repairs. The Meyer’s crew were on spot as they got the #87 out without losing a lap and an overall fifth place finish to remain the point leader. Waterman clearly has the car to beat on this night as he battled Al Stone and second year driver Adrien Paradis but withheld the challenges for the win. Rounding out the top five were Waterman, Al Atone, Paradis, Shawn Monahan, who had a great run to the front and Chris Meyer. Heat wins earlier in the night went to Waterman and Jon Porter.

In the Mr. Rooter Truck Series / NLWS Trucks 35-lap feature it was father vs son right down to the finish. The Long Island tandem of Corey Coates and dad Allen Coates were the ones that put on the show, As the green flag waved to start the event it was Corey Coated pulling out to the lead with Allen in the Dunleavey’s Track and Trailer Repairs #99 in tow. On lap-17 the #99 of Alan Coates got to the outside of his son and battled lap after lap with each taking the lead on different occasions. Things started to get interesting as Gerard Giordano Jr and NLWS point leader Duane Noll started to catch the leader. The race was halter once for a Chris Taylor spin setting up a green-white-checkered finish. The Coates duo restarted the event with Allen nudging the #81 of Chris and that little nudge was enough to put the elder Coated in victory lane. The win was Coated first Mr. Rooter Truck Series win of the season. “That was so cool racing my son like that, I wouldn’t have any other way and with anybody else,” commented Allen in victory lane. Rounding out the top-5 were A. Coates, C. Coates, Gerard Giordano, Duane Noll and Joshua Stringer.

In the NEMA Lites it was Ben Mikitarian taking down the 25-lap feature. Mikitarian had the fastest car all night. He took top honors in group qualifying as was untouchable during the feature. As the group started to go single file Mikitarian pulled out to a big lead over PJ Stergios in the #11. With the laps winding down and lap cars slowing the Mikitarian machine it was Stergios catching Mikitarian with a few laps to go. Stergios was unable to make the car stick on the outside and had to settle for second. Finishing third through fifth were Paul Scally, Dan Cugini and Jim Chambers.

In the second of four races for the Connecticut Cup Series for the Pro-4 Modifieds it was Rob Richardi taking down his second win of the four-race series. The 25-lap race started with the 7ny of Brett Meservey jumping out to the lead and was just pulling away from the field. The field’s only chance to catch Meservey was on a lap-13 restart. But Meservey was to strong and jumped out to another huge lead. It was with a couple laps to go the #7nu went up in smoke entering turns 1 and 2 ending his night, giving Richardi the win. Jacob Perry who was doing double duty crossed the line in third, but was the first Pro-4 Lite to finish giving him the Lite win. Rounding out the top-5 were Richardi, Doug Meservey Jr, Jacob Perry, PJ Peters and Dan Meservey Sr.

Additional Reserved Seating Now Available for 42nd Red Clay Classic

Thursday, August 31st, 2017

Ashland, WI — With the recently-completed renovations to the ABC Raceway’s main grandstand, the Board of Directors is offering additional reserved seating for its 42nd annual Red Clay Classic, to be held on Friday and Saturday, September 29-30. The additional seating will be made available to those who wish to bring their own seats, such as folding lawn chairs and portable sports chairs. Eighty extra places have been marked along the upper walkway of the main grandstands specifically for lawn- and sports-chair seating, and they are immediately available on a reservation-only basis.

A reserved “bring-your-own-seat” spot along the upper grandstand walkway is just $52 for the Red Clay Classic weekend and includes a two-night pass to the popular and prestigious race event. Fans who request to reserve one of these spots are reminded, however, that the Raceway reserves the right to deny use of certain types of chairs in those spots.

“We welcome fans to attend our event, and we look forward to seeing everyone here,” Raceway president Eric Erickson stated recently with this announcement. “We believe that race fans are very respectful of other people’s property, and we hope that this will be the case when folks sign up to bring their lawn chairs to our track. “The blacktop project was very expensive, and we hope fans will cooperate and not use chairs that may cause damage to the pavement.”

Once the 80 spaces are claimed and paid for, no other folding lawn chairs or sports chairs will be allowed to be used along the upper walkway of the main grandstand. Reservations are being accepted for other grandstand seating, as well as on-site camping and pit spots for the Red Clay Classic. There are still a good number of seats available for reservations; however, camping sites are going fast.

Adult grandstand tickets are available at $22 for Friday’s program and $25 for Saturday; fans can purchase a two-day pass for just $42. For kids ages 6-12 tickets are $12 each night, while a two-day kids’ pass is just $20. A reserved seat can be purchased with any two-day pass for an additional $10 charge; reserved seats are not available with single-day ticket purchases. Reserved primitive camping sites on the Raceway grounds are available at $30 each for the weekend. There is also camping available on the privately-owned property to the east of the track for a fee, but those sites are available on a first-come, first-served basis, and no reservations are available through the Raceway for those sites.

To buy tickets or to save a seat or Raceway-property campsite, fans can call (715) 682-2672 Monday through Friday (evenings only) or send an e-mail to

Reserved pit spots are just $30 each and available by calling (715) 746-2390 (evenings) or by e-mailing to

Information regarding access times to the grounds, pits and grandstands, start times for hot laps and racing, and other activities will be released shortly.

Prior to each night’s race program, “Z-93 Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live from the Raceway on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at The broadcast times will be announced later.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. Additional event information is available on the track’s website, Additional Ashland area community information is available by visiting