Story By: SCOTT RUNNING / STAFFORD MOTOR SPEEDWAY – STAFFORD SPRINGS, CT – Stafford Motor Speedway SK Modified® driver Mikey Flynn will be looking to make his Open Modified debut this Friday night, July 30 in the Bud Light 80.
Flynn began his Stafford career in the SK Light division with 2 starts in 2017 and made the move into the SK Modified® division in 2020. Flynn has posted 4 second place finishes in SK Light competition with his best SK Modified® finish of fifth coming earlier this season.
Flynn and his #24 Place Motors crew purchased an Open Modified engine and will utilize his SK Modified® chassis from last season for the Open Modified event this Friday night at Stafford.
“We went with a new SPAFCO Chassis for this season so we had our SK chassis from last year just sitting around,” said Flynn. “The objective is for me to get as many laps and as much experience as I can because we can run this car at Stafford as well as take it to some other tracks. We bought an open motor from Mike Pettit and we’ll start off at Stafford and see how things go for us. I definitely have to thank my parents, I wouldn’t be able to do any of this without them. Also Ken Barry and Bill Michael from SPAFCO Chassis, Mike Pettit, Hub International Insurance, Auth Fuels, Ballyheigue Farms, Rick Green, Place Motors, Gio’s Pizzeria, and Kahn Tractor for all their support.”
While Flynn will have to learn a new style of modified car, he will have the advantage of track knowledge on his side as he prepares for the Bud Light 80. In the previous 11 open modified races held at Stafford, with the exception of Eric Goodale in 2018, every race has been won by a driver who is either a current or former weekly modified competitor at Stafford. Flynn will also be familiar with his chassis, which should help lessen his learning curve.
“I’m probably a little bit both nervous and excited,” said Flynn. “If I told you I wasn’t nervous then I’d be lying. The seat is still the same from last year and things are all still set up the same with the car. We’re going to get familiar with the car and the new engine during practice since I’ve never driven a car with an open motor in it, and I’ve had a lot of help from Ken Barry and Bill Michael from SPAFCO making this whole situation go smoothly. Obviously I’ll have to get out on the track and see what the differences are between the SK car and the Open car. The experience I’ve gained at Stafford for the last 5 seasons and knowing the lines, where I need to hit my marks, and what I need from the car should be a help with the Open car. This is an awesome opportunity and it’s something that I’m really looking forward to doing.”
Flynn goes into the Bud Light 80 feeling confident about his chances, but he is also realistic with his expectations for the race.
“A top-10 finish to start out would be awesome for us,” said Flynn. “Especially doing double duty, which is a first for my team. If you don’t feel confident going into a race then you’re probably not going to do well. I’m going into the race feeling confident and getting some laps during practice should only help. I’m not saying that I’m going to destroy the field, that’s not realistic. I have a lot to learn but I feel confident going into the race and I feel like I can get the job done. If I can have a smooth day, be competitive racing with the pack, and load the car back on the trailer in one piece, that would be a good night for us.”
The 4th Annual Bud Light Open 80 is scheduled for this Friday, July 30. Stafford’s SK Modified®, Late Model, SK Light, Limited Late Model, and Street Stock divisions will join the Open Modifieds in feature action. Tickets for the Bud Light 80 are available now online at StaffordSpeedway.com/tickets and tickets will also be available for purchase at the admission gates. Tickets for the Bud Light 80 are $30.00 for adults, $10.00 for kids 6-14, and free for kids 5 & under. Reserved seating is priced at $35.00 for all ages and pit passes are $45.00 with a valid 2021 Stafford Competition License and $50.00 without a Stafford license.