RPW Column: The Champ Trail: Rain Wins…A Lot…But Not At Riverhead & The SRX At Slingers

Column Compiled By: PHIL SMITH / RPW – WESTERLY, RI – A severe rainstorm shortly after qualifying began forced the cancellation of the Samuel Adams Wicked Hazy IPA Spirit of 76 at Connecticut’s Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park on Wednesday, July 7. The event will not be rescheduled due to a lack of open dates.

Stafford Speedway postponed its Bud Light Open 80 event scheduled for Friday, July 9 due to forecasted rain as a result of Tropical Storm Elsa. The entire race program will move to Friday, July 30. Any tickets sold for the July 9 event will be honored on July 30.

Stafford Speedway will return to racing action this coming Friday night, July 16 with the rescheduled Midstate Site Development Street Stock 30 program with fireworks. The MSD Street Stock 30 will feature Stafford’s Street Stocks going 30 laps along with the SK Modified®, Late Model, SK Light, and Limited Late Model divisions plus a fireworks display at the end of the night. The Kids Night that was originally scheduled for July 30 is now cancelled and the next Kids Night event will be the Back to SKool Night on Friday, August 27.

At the New London-Waterford Speedbowl track crews were unsuccessful in removing water left by the heavy rains.

The Bowman Gray Stadium in North Carolina returned to action. Tim Brown picked up his 93rd career win in the modified 100 lapper over Brandon Ward, Lee Jefferys and Burt Myers.

Riverhead Raceway on Long Island avoided the rains. Taking the Modified win was Michael Rutkoski over Jack Handley, Chris Young, John Fortin Sr and John Baker.

Marco Andretti scored his first career Camping World SRX Series win Saturday night at Slinger Super Speedway before a sellout crowd.. However, most of the race was spent with three-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Tony Stewart battling side-by-side with 17-year-old Luke Fenhaus for the lead.

Luke Fenhaus drew rave reviews from Tony Stewart and Marco Andretti following the Camping World SRX Series event at Slinger Super Speedway. Fenhaus earned his spot in the SRX lineup by virtue of winning the Slinger Nationals on Tuesday, topping a stout field of Super Late Model competitors for the “golden ticket.” Fenhaus started the night with a pair of third-place finishes in heat races, earning a front-row starting spot for the 150-lap feature.

Throughout the race, Fenhaus had several extended battles with both Andretti and Stewart, ultimately finishing second to Andretti and ahead of Stewart.

Darren Hackett, promoter for the 19th Annual “John Blewett III Memorial” North South Shootout presented in memory of Charles Kepley has announced six qualifying events for the “Shootout”. The race winner at each of six events will earn a guaranteed starting spot for the November 6th race to be held at Caraway Speedway near Asheboro, NC. Hackett has also posted bonus money for each of the events. The race leader on lap 76, Blewett’s car number, will receive a $250.00 bonus. In addition, the second-place driver on lap 76 will receive $150.00 and the third-place runner will earn a $100.00 bonus.

The first qualifier will take place on July 24th at Star Speedway in Epping, New Hampshire. The event is part of the Tri-Track Open Modified Series. Three SMART Modified Tour events are also on tap as qualifiers for the “Shootout”. The SMART events will be held at Caraway Speedway on September 11th, Dominion Raceway in Woodford, VA on September 18th and Motor Mile Speedway in Radford, VA on October 2nd.

The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Series heads to Loudon, NH this coming Saturday for a 100 lap-105.8 mile event. Post time is 12:45pm. TrackPass will show the event live and NBC Sports Net will have a delayed showing on August 11 at 1:00pm.

June 17, 1972 Ray Miller in the Meyers-Sweatland Mustang took Stafford by storm on Saturday night. Following Miller at the finish were Fred DeSarro, Billy Harman, Bob Santos and Eddie Flemke. Del Cushing was the All-American Sportsman winner. Read all about it in the all-new book, The Modified Years At Stafford, by the Grace of God and 600 hp, which 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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