April 29, 2016
Sixty five years ago in 1951 the New London-Waterford Speedbowl
ran it’s second event which was won by Stan Woods.
Fifty five years ago in 1961 the New
London-Waterford Speedbowl ran it’s rescheduled opener which was won by Ted
Stack. Joe Maynard was the Bomber winner and Charlie Webster was victorious
in the Non-Fords.
Fifty years ago in 1966 Pete
Hamilton, who would go on to become the 1970 Daytona 500 winner took the
Friday night 30-lap win at the Albany Saratoga Speedway on Friday night.
Rene Charland finished second and was followed by Eddie Flemke, Dick Dixon
and Dennis Zimmerman. The entire above mentioned have since been inducted
into the New England Auto Racing Hall of Fame. The Utica-Rome Speedway in
Vernon, NY began its sixth season with Bill Wimble taking a 30 lap win over
Ernie Gahan, Frank Mathalia, Eddie Flemke Sr. and Lou Toro. Rain washed out
the Sunday afternoon program at the Waterford Speedbowl.
Forty five years ago in 1971, Fred
DeSarro got a mid week call from Len Boehler to drive the mighty No.3 that
had recently been vacated by Bugsy Stevens. Their first outing together as a
team was at Martinsville for the spring 100 on Saturday. Ray Hendrick, still
in his prime, cleaned house as he took the win over Stevens and Jerry Cook.
DeSarro finished fourth. After an all night high speed run up I-81 the scene
shifted to Thompson. On a mission, DeSarro didn't disappoint the fans as he
won both ends of the scheduled twin 25's.In the first 25, Bob Santos
finished and was followed by Stevens and Leo Cleary. In the second 25,
DeSarro and Stevens slugged it out as they ran wheel to wheel to the
checker. Ronnie Shawn finished third and was followed by Jerry Cook and
Ernie Gahan. A scheduled 50 lapper at Fonda on Saturday night was snowed out
and the Utica-Rome Speedway suffered its first of three rainouts in a row.
The weather stayed dry in Connecticut as Bob Potter took a 30-lap win at the
Waterford Speedbowl over Howard “Jiggs” Beetham, Leo Hill and Bob Tetrault.
Big Mike Daignault made it four in a row in the Sportsman Sedans.
Forty years ago in 1976, the New
Egypt Speedway, then asphalt, hosted the NASCAR Modifieds. Maynard Troyer
lapped the field to take the 150-lap win over Jerry Cook, George Wagner and
Wayne Anderson. Steady Eddie Flemke made it two in a row at Thompson. Ronnie
Bouchard finished second. Rain prevailed at the Waterford Speedbowl.
Thirty five years ago in 1981, the
Modifieds were at Martinsville for the Spring 150.Because of a broken
driveshaft while qualifying, Richie Evans started dead last in the 30 car
field and after a determined charge took the win over Ronnie Bouchard,
Maynard Troyer, Jerry Cook and Ray Hendrick in the Dick Armstrong
No.1.Lancaster opened for the season on Sunday. After finishing sixth at
Martinsville, Geoff Bodine made the all night ride pay off as he won the
open competition event George Kent finished second with Jerry Cook, third.
Waterford also opened for the season with an open competition event which
drew 42 cars. Rick Donnelly took the win with John Rosati, second. Eddie St
Angelo finished third and was followed by Moose Hewitt, Joe Tiezzi, Charlie
Jarzombek and Jerry Pearl. Bob Riley beat out Don Lajoie in Modified action
at Danbury. In Winston Cup action at Martinsville, Morgan Shepherd took the
win. Joe Ginty was the Sportsman winner at Danbury with Bo Gunning, second.
Thirty years ago in 1986, Brett
Bodine, already firmly entrenched in the southern Grandnational ranks drove
Art Barry's modified to a 1.13 second win over Brian Ross in the Spring 150
at Martinsville. George Kent finished third and was followed by Corky
Cookman, Kenny Bouchard and Jamie Tomaino. At the conclusion of the
Martinsville, Kent hopped a plane for Shangri-La (Tioga). The trip was worth
it as the Duke took the Saturday night win over Rod Spaulding and Tony
Jankowiac. Riverhead also ran with Jerry Solomito taking the win. At
Waterford on Sunday, Bob Potter started fourth and led all 86 laps of the
main event. Richie Gallup finished second and was followed by Harry Rice and
Charlie Savage. In Winston Cup action at Martinsville Tim Richmond was the
pole sitter and Ricky Rudd won the 500-lap grind.
Twenty five years ago in 1991, Mike
Stefanik went pole to pole to win the 150 at Martinsville. Rick Fuller in
the FioreNo.44 finished second and was followed by Reggie Ruggiero, George
Kent and Doug Hevron. Among the missing was Tom Baldwin who was reported to
have been shot by a home intruder. At Riverside on Saturday night, Dan Avery
took the win over Bruce D'Assandro and Brad Hietella. Rick Fuller made it
back from Martinsville only to be ejected for rough riding after officials
felt he intentionally wrecked Charlie Pasteryak. Other Saturday night action
saw Carl Miller beat out Bill Park at Riverhead. On Sunday, Waterford ran a
91 lapper as their opener. Dennis Gada took the win over Ricky Young and
Harry Rice. Monadnock also opened on Sunday with Rick Fuller taking the win
over Kirby Monteith and Dwight Jarvis.
Twenty years ago in 1996, Waterford
ran back to back events on Saturday and Sunday because of a rain out of the
Blast Off event. Eric Berndt beat out David and Dennis Gada to win the
Saturday night 35 lapper. Tommy Fox was the late model winner. During the
running of the late model event Matt Kobyluck was ejected for two weeks for
arguing with officials over an accident he had with Eddie Reed Jr. On Sunday
in the rained out 96 lap opener, Todd Ceravolo took the lead from veteran
Jerry Pearl on lap 55 and went on to record the win. Jim Broderick pitted
for fresh rubber on lap 54 and made a hard charge to the front but his
efforts fell short and he had to settle for second spot. Pearl finished
third ahead of the Gada Bros. Don Howe won at Riverhead and Reggie Ruggiero
beat out Richie Gallup at Riverside. In BGNN action at Lee, Dave Dion took
the lead from Jerry Marquis on lap 91 and went on to win the 150 lap event.
In Winston Cup action at Talladega, Sterling Marlin took the win over Dale
Jarrett. NASCAR took Ernie Irvan’s pole winning car and put it on a chassis
dyno. While loading the car, NASCAR tech man Gary Nelson slipped the clutch
and ultimately ruined the engine. Bill Elliot fractured a left thigh bone
after going fifteen feet in the air and came down on all fours like a ton a
bricks and Ricky Craven almost went out of the ball park in a twelve car
Fifteen years ago in 2001 John
Blewett III took the win in the 200 lap,30th annual, Spring Sizzler after
Rick Fuller dove under and spun with leader Mike Stefanik on lap 183.Reggie
Ruggiero ended up second and was followed by Ted Christopher, Jerry Marquis,
Tony Hirschman and Stefanik. There were 10 cautions for 50 laps as 7000
looked on. Willie Hardie won the twin 40 lap SK Modified events. Eric Berndt
beat out Ed Reed Jr. for the win at Waterford and it was Chris Young at
Riverhead. Twin features were run at Wall Stadium with Jimmy Blewett and Tim
Arre sharing victory lane. In Winston Cup action at California Speedway,
Rusty Wallace came from a 19th starting spot and dominated the event on his
way to victory. Jeff Gordon finished second. Hank Parker Jr won the
California Grandnational event. Billy Nicewicz, former Richie Evans crew
chief, was Parkers crew chief. It was also announced that CART cancelled
their event at Dallas-Fort Worth. With that news, Speedway Motorsports stock
Ten years ago in 2006 all roads led
to Jack Arute’s Stafford Motor Speedway for the 35th annual Spring Sizzler.
The weather was sunny and breezy, a big difference from the original Sizzler
in 1972 when it was cold and dismal. Forty-eight NASCAR Whelen Modifieds
were on hand for qualifying. Donny Lia. set fast time in qualifying to earn
his first NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Bud Pole Award of the season. Lia
circled the ½ mile Stafford Motor Speedway in 18.600 seconds for an average
speed of 96.774. It was the 9th career Bud Pole Award for Lia and his second
consecutive for the Sizzler. Defending NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion
Tony Hirschman was second fastest with a speed of 96.753 mph in the Kamco
Supply Chevrolet. Former champion Todd Szegedy was third fastest with a
speed of 96.370 mph. Eddie Flemke and Mike Stefanik of rounded out the Top-5
in qualifying. The Top-10 qualifiers drew for starting position. Chuck
Hossfeld picked the pole and was joined on the front row by John Blewett,
III. Mike Andrews picked third. Lia drew the fourth starting position and
Szegedy drew 5th. Stefanik, Flemke and Hirschman started 8th, 9th and 10th
respectively. Chris Pasteryak was the highest qualifying rookie as he
qualified 11th. Rookie Danny Sammons was 12th.
Among those who failed to qualify were Richard Savory, Ron Silk, Carl
Pasteryak, Joe Mongeau, Dennis Cherette, Eric Berndt, Jon McKennedy, Jim
Storace, Wade Cole, Tom Cloce, Ken Heagy, Anthony Seseley, Glenn Tyler and
Whelen Modified Tour Series car owner Curt Chase of Mansfield, CT calls
the Stafford Motor Speedway his home track. On Saturday after his driver
Doug Coby qualified 29th Chase remained optimistic. Chase gave Coby his
marching orders, which were to save his tires and stay out of trouble. Coby
did his job as he drove to his first career Whelen Modified Tour win. One of
the best crowds in many years was on hand. Coby led the final 62 laps and
held off a late race challenge from Donny Lia. Coby pitted once, on lap 74
under caution. He was in the third spot on a lap 139 restart and when the
two cars in front of him driven by Zach Sylvester and Tony Hirschman made
contact. Coby, in the right place at the right time, took over the top spot.
Eric Beers driving the legendary Ole Blu of Janice and Michael Boehler
finished third. Then current series point leader Mike Stefanik was fourth
with Rob Summers rounding out the top five. Coby also won the Powerade Power
Move of the Race Award. Matt Hirschman earned the Featherlite Most Improved
Driver Award and James Civali was the highest finishing Sunoco Rookie for
the second consecutive event.
There were11 cautions for 56 laps. Twenty of the original 33 starters were
running in the lead lap at the finish. There were seven lead changes among
eight drivers. It was Chuck Hossfeld jumping out front on the initial green
and for the first 43 laps, the race was being run liked they were all double
parked on the street but as the old saying goes, cautions breed cautions and
that never was more true than Sunday at Stafford. John Blewett, III took
over the lead on lap 22 before the yellow fever hit the track, as there were
five cautions, all within 36 laps and for mostly minor spins. On lap 52,
Todd Szegedy, former series champion took over the lead from Blewett but
just as he did, Jamie Tomaino spun. As the track clicked off lap 60, it was
Szegedy setting the pace with Blewett second, with Stefanik third, Eric
Beers fourth and tour champion, Tony Hirschman fifth. On lap 70 a caution
flew for Zack Sylvester and it was a chance for both Coby and Lia to duck
into the pit area tires and adjustments and with Stafford a tricky track to
pass on, the early pitting played out later down the road. Mike Stefanik
then moved into second and began applying pressure to Szegedy for the lead
but Ted Christopher, the master at Stafford passed Stefanik and soon set his
sights on Szegedy before passing him on lap 87. On lap 93, another caution
slowed the field and many of the front cars all pitted but Christopher and
Szegedy stayed on the track hoping to pit later and have fresher tires at
the end. On lap 100, the caution again flew as the field hit the halfway
point in the feature and the top five cars were TC, Szegedy, Reggie
Ruggiero, Ken Barry and Rick Fuller. On lap 106, Reggie Ruggiero in the Dick
Barney owned #41 showed he hasn't lost anything behind the wheel despite
being a part timer on the tour recently. He dispatched Szegedy for second
with Fuller taking third as Szegedy settled into fourth with Matt Hirschman
moving into the fifth spot. Another caution flew on lap 116 when Mike
Stefanik, getting impatient with cars in front of him made it three wide in
turn one trying to get around but it caused the cars of Hossfeld and Blewett
to become locked together and spin in turn one. On lap 117, when pit road
opened up, Christopher, Ruggiero, Szegedy, James Civali, Barry and Blewett
all pitted. Ruggiero's crew lost him a lap on pit road when they had trouble
with a right front tire. That surrendered the lead over to Rick Fuller in
the Joe Brady owned/Polar Beverages Chevrolet. On lap 130 with Fuller still
setting the pace, it was Zack Sylvester second with Tony Hirschman third,
Doug Coby fourth and fifth to Matt Hirschman. Another caution flew on lap
134 for another simple spin but it was the 'Lucky Dog' for Ruggiero as he
was able to get back on the lead lap. Zack Sylvester and Tony Hirschman were
on the front row for the restart but as the duo hit turn one, Sylvester rode
Tony up the track and Hirschman spun and as Sylvester was trying to correct
himself, Coby sneaked by for the lead. The final caution of the day flew on
lap 145 as Kirk Alexander brought out the caution as he stopped in turn
three. At lap 150, the top five were Coby, Lia, Rob Summers, Eric Beers and
Matt Hirschman. Mike Stefanik was now on the move up to seventh on the track
and he was clearly the quickest car on the track. Stefanik moved to sixth on
lap 158 and then just four laps later passed the younger Hirschman for
fifth. On lap 174, Eric Beers got by Rob Summers for third and Stefanik took
the opening to get by Summers also for fourth. In the mean time, Coby was
beginning to stretch his advantage just slightly over Lia but as they
clicked off lap 190, the leaders were beginning to encounter lapped traffic.
On lap 196, they caught the last car and Steve Whitt, who has run up front
in the past didn't give Coby and Lia any room and that allowed not only Lia
a chance at Coby but for Beers and Stefanik to close in and challenge. But
it wasn't to be and Coby finally got the monkey off his back and cruised to
win the Spring Sizzler. Coby earned $7,600 for the win. Sixth through tenth
was Ted Christopher, James Civali, the highest finishing rookie for the
second straight race, Matt Hirschman, Tony Hirschman and Danny Sammons in
his first top ten finish. Ted Christopher was the SK Modified winner. Keith
Rocco finished second with Frank Ruocco, third. Woody Pitkat was able to
overtake Todd Owen for fourth. Pitkat was the Late Model winner.
At the Waterford Speedbowl on Saturday night the temperatures took a dive
but that didn’t hold back defending SK Modified Champion Rob Summers as he
was able to record his first feature win of the year at the shoreline oval.
Earlier in the day Summers qualified 28th for the Stafford Sizzler. Frank
Mucciacciaro Jr. was the early leader until lap 20 when Summers made an
outside move to take the lead. Dennis Gada moved into the second spot in the
late going but couldn’t muster the required power to overcome Summers and
settled for the runner-up spot. Chris Pasteryak, who qualified 11th at
Stafford wound up third with Tommy Fox and Shawn Monahan rounding out the
top five. Other Saturday night winners at the Speedbowl were Larry Goss in
the Late Models and Dwayne Door making it three in a row in the Sportsman
A proposed speedway in metro New York took a few steps backward when a
public hearing for the proposed NASCAR track was canceled after 700
disorderly people mobbed the entrance to the school where the hearing was to
be held. Police were called to step in to quell the near riot and cancelled
the meeting. It also appears that the proposed domed speedway in Plainfield,
CT was dying a slow death.
Five years ago in 2011, the NASCAR Whelen
Southern Modified Tour was in action at Caraway Speedway in Sophia, N.C. Ted
Christopher made it two in a row as he edged Thomas Stinson in a
two-lap dash to the finish.
Christopher, a veteran of the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour with 294 career
starts and 39 wins on that circuit, took command from pole-sitter George
Brunnhoelzl III on the sixth lap of the Caraway 150 and held off Stinson in
a green-white-checkered finish to win by .284 seconds.
Christopher's victory follows his at South Boston, Va. It marked the
sixth career win in 15 starts in the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour
for the Plainville, Conn., driver and his fourth win at Caraway. After being
passed, Brunnhoelzl stayed close and shadowed Christopher for most of the
race. He made several challenges, but was not able to regain the lead.
Stinson, who had started 17th, caught the pair on Lap 125 and gained the
second spot on Lap 131. He attempted to move by Christopher for the lead,
but had to settle for the runner-up spot. John Smith finished third with
Brunnhoelzl and Frank Fleming rounding out the top five. Jason Myers, Austin
Pack, Tim Brown, Lee Jefferies and James Civali made up the top ten.
Jeffries was pinch hitting for the injured Burt Myers. Ten of the original
20 starters were on the lead lap at the finish.
For the second week in a row the Waterford Speedbowl pulled the plug due
to cold weather and heavy rain along the Connecticut shoreline.
In Nationwide Series racing at Nashville, Carl Edwards led five times for
148 laps beating Kyle Busch to the checkered flag by .521 seconds. Edwards
surged past Busch as the two dueled for the lead with 35 laps to go. Sprint
Cup competition took a week off.
Last year, 2015 The 44th Annual NAPA
Auto Parts Spring Sizzler got underway Friday, April 24 with a practice
session for Stafford’s weekly divisions.
Among the missing on Saturday when the tour modifieds rolled in was Tommy
Barrett. Internet news site Racedayct reported that NASCAR Whelen Modified
Tour driver Tommy Barrett Jr. was arrested on April 17 in Willimantic, CT
for driving under the influence. The drinking age in Connecticut is 21.
Sergeant Alex Coriaty of the Willimantic Police Department confirmed that
the 19-year old Barrett was charged with driving under the influence of
alcohol or drugs at 1:48 a.m. on April 17 in Willimantic, CT. Barrett was
also cited for driving unreasonably fast and failing to signal a turn.
Barrett, of Millis, Mass., is due in Danielson, CT Superior Court on April
27. Barrett was replaced by car owner Robert Our for the Stafford event by
NASCAR released the following statement Thursday evening: “NASCAR is
aware of Tommy Barrett Jr.’s recent DUI arrest. As we continue to gather
information, Barrett will not be allowed to compete in NASCAR-sanctioned
events pending a formal review. We have no additional information to share
at this time.”
Getting suspended and arrested didn't seem to bother Barrett as he was
seen at the Stafford enjoying the Sizzler.
Barrett made his first appearance at Danielson Superior Court Monday
morning, May 27, as a result of his arrest April 17 for driving under the
influence of alcohol or drugs. Internet racing web site RacedayCt.com
reported that Barrett met briefly with his attorney before the two filed
paperwork with the clerk’s office and left the court. Barrett did not face a
judge. Barrett had no comment on the appearance and his attorney also
Asked if Barrett was applying for the state’s Pre-Trial Alcohol Education
Program, the attorney said he does not comment to the media concerning his
clients. The state’s Pre-Trial Alcohol Education Program is a diversionary
program open to those who are charged with driving under the influence for
the first time.
When the program is applied for the court file for the defendant is sealed.
Those who apply for the program are evaluated by the state Department of
Mental Health and Addiction Services and that evaluation is used to
recommend that the applicant be placed in one of the three programs, if the
court grants the application.
The three programs include a 10-week educational program, a 15-week
educational program or a treatment program. If the defendant finishes the
assigned program successfully, the charges will be dismissed by the court.
Thirty-three NASCAR Modifieds were on hand Saturday for qualifying on a
cool and blustery day. Ryan Preece, of Berlin, Connecticut, turned in a fast
lap of 17.960 seconds (100.223 mph) to score his 13th career Coors Light
Pole Award. Starting alongside Preece’s No. 6 TS Haulers/East West Marine
Chevrolet in the front row with the second fastest time was Woody Pitkat,
who recorded a quick qualifier of 18.047 (99.740) behind the wheel of his
No. 88 Buzz Chew Chevrolet/Elbow East Chevrolet. Rowan Pennink, Donny Lia
and Justin Bonsignore rounded out the top five qualifiers. Sixth through
tenth were Ted Christopher, Bobby Santos, followed by Timmy Solomito, Todd
Szegedy and Keith Rocco. Defending Whelen Modified Tour champion
and 2015 season-opening race winner Doug Coby qualified 11th at 18.230
Melissa Fifield, the only female in the field, qualified 33rd. Her speed,
88.106mph was 12.117 mph off the pole speed. We all know she works hard and
tries real hard but in reality she is way out of her league and should not
be allowed to race in this division. Needless to say she did start the
Sizzler. In the early going she was lapped on Lap 10 and again on lap 17.
Finally NASCAR determined that she was a safety hazard and black-flagged her
on lap 90 for not maintaining minimum speed.
Rowan Pennink got a gift when he won the 40 lap SK Modified preliminary
that was run prior to the Sizzler on Sunday. Pennink inherited the lead
after Keith Rocco was black flagged for aggressive diving on a lap 20
restart. Pennink survived after being passed by Glen Reen on a lap 27
restart as he passed to regain the lead on lap 32 and never looked back
after that. Reen ended up second with Ryan Preece, third. Dan Avery and Ted
Christopher rounded out the top five. Rocco recovered from restarting in the
rear and finished sixth. Of note, Mike Christopher JR made his SK Modified
debut and finished 16th in the 25 car starting field. Michael Bennett was
the Late Model winner.
Following the completion of the April 25-26 NAPA Spring Sizzler NASCAR
Whelen All-American Series feature events, Stafford Motor Speedway officials
have announced the following penalty:#39 SK Modified, Driver Chris Jones,
Infraction- Unsportsmanlike conduct, on-track. Unsportsmanlike conduct,
off-track. Actions detrimental to the sport. Penalties- Disqualification
from Spring Sizzler feature event, placed to last in the finishing order.
Suspended from competition at Stafford Motor Speedway for the next 6
completed events. $250 fine payable to The Shane Hammond Foundation or The
Spalding Foundation, through Stafford Motor Speedway. The fine must be paid
to the Speedway office prior to the next attended event. Placed on probation
through December 31st, 2015.
Hometown hero Woody Pitkat in the Long Island based Buzz Chew Chevrolet
won the 200 lap Spring Sizzler 2.6 seconds ahead of Todd Szegedy who drove
Bob Garbarino's Mystic Missile. Ryan Preece, Eric Goodale and Donny Lia
rounded out the top five. In victory lane Szegedy paid Pitkat the ultimate
complement. "I would say that Woody just won the race of his life," said
Szegedy, who finished second. "To win at his home track, to win the Spring
Sizzler, that has to be amazing. He's mastered this track and he's come a
long way." Pitkat, who started on the outside pole, was in contention most
of the day as he consistantly ran in the top five. Once taking the lead on
lap 161 from Szegedy the Stafford Springs resident opened up a sizable lead
as the race ran non-stop from there. After just two races Woody Pitkat leads
the points over Doug Coby and Ryan Preece. According to NASCAR, it is the
first time Pitkat has ever been the points leader in his career.
Sixth through tenth were Thompson IceBreaker winner Doug Coby, Rowan
Pennink, Patrick Emerling, Jamie Tomaino and Brandon Bock. It was the first
top ten for Tomaino in quite some time.
Pole sitter Preece led the first 21 laps before giving way to Pitkat who
led lap 22. As Preece faded a bit Justin Bonsignore move by him and Pitkat
to take the lead on lap 31. Preece was not ready to quit as he stormed back
to take back the lead on lap 69, holding it to lap 98 before giving it up to
Pitkat for one lap. Preece took it back on lap 100. Szegedy, in only his
second time out in the Mystic Missile came on strong, taking the lead on lap
117 and holding it thru lap 138. Preece took it back on lap 139 for one lap
before Szegedy took it again on lap 140, holding the point for 20 laps
before giving way to Pitkat for the final lead change on lap 161.
Keith Rocco, pinch hitting for Tommy Barrett JR had quite a day and in
fact had worked his way to the runner-up spot before being slowed by a
faulty alternator. Rocco ended up 12th, one lap down, at the finish.
There were eight cautions for 41 laps. Most were for minor spins except
for the yellow on lap 89 for Spencer Davis who pounded the wall in turn four
with the Hills Enterprises entry. Davis emerged unhurt.
In Saturday preliminary action at Stafford, D.J. Burnham took the
checkered flag in the 20-lap SK Light feature, Al Saunders was the winner of
the 20-lap Limited Late Model feature, Dan Dembek won the 15-lap DARE Stock
feature, Cory DiMatteo won the 20-lap Legend Cars feature, and Roger Turbush
won the 20-lap Mr. Rooter Truck Series feature.
The Stafford pit area was jammed with over 165 cars in competition.
Weekly racing at Stafford begins this Friday, Featured competition will be
SK Modified® (40), Late Model (30), SK Light (20), Limited Late Model (20),
DARE Stock (15), Legend Cars (20).
Down in the southland at the Bowman Gray Stadium, better known as the Mad
House, the season opening 200 lap Modified event was postponed because of
rain until next week. The same storm blanketed the Richmond VA area causing
NASCAR to postpone a scheduled Sprint Cup event to Sunday afternoon.
Kurt Busch scored the 26th victory of his career after leading 291 of 400
laps to claim the Toyota Owners 400, his first win since March 31, 2014 –
which also came at a Virginia short track, Martinsville Speedway. Kevin
On a sad note, noted broadcaster Steve Byrnes, 56, passed away after a
battle with cancer. Steve enjoyed a successful and highly respected
television broadcasting career for 30 years. He joined the FOX Sports family
in 2001, hosting and reporting for multiple NASCAR programs and serving as a
pit road reporter for NASCAR on FOX's broadcast of NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
races from 2001-2014. Most recently, he was the play-by-play announcer for
FOX Sports 1 in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, and was co-host of
NASCAR Race Hub for the network.
Prior to joining FOX, Byrnes also hosted Darrell Waltrip's Racers on TNN,
worked as a pit road reporter for CBS, WTBS and TNN, and hosted a variety of
NASCAR programs for The History Channel and TNN, for which he moved to
Charlotte in 1985 and remained in the area ever since. His first on-air job
was at WCIV-TV in Charleston, S.C., in 1982, after commencing his television
career as weekend sports producer at WJLA-TV in Washington, D.C.,
immediately following graduation from college. Steve also called
play-by-play for a Carolina Panthers/Minnesota Vikings NFL game on FOX and
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races for DirecTV Hot Pass.
A memorial service was held at 1 p.m. on Tuesday, April 28 at Calvary
Church with visitation immediately following. Palmetto Funeral Home in Fort
Mill, NC assisted the family.
That’s about it for this week from 11 Gardner Drive, Westerly, and
R.I.02891.Ring my chimes at 401-596-5467.E-Mail, email@example.com.
Phil Smith has been a
columnist for Speedway Scene and various
other publications for over 3 decades.
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