Story By: SCOTT RUNNING / STAFFORD MOTOR SPEEDWAY – STAFFORD SPRINGS, CT – Stafford Speedway hosted another round of Stafford Weekly Racing on Friday, July 1st with Open Modified cars on hand for the GAF Roofing Open 80.
David Arute scored his second win of the season in the SK Modified® feature, Andrew Molleur notched his first Late Model win of the season to end Adam Gray’s winning streak at 4 races, George Bessette, Jr. took down his first win of the season in the SK Light feature, Matt Clement was a first time winner in 2022 in the Limited Late Model feature, and Travis Downey was a career first time winner in the Street Stock feature.
In the 40-lap SK Modified® feature event, Troy Talman led the field to the green flag but the caution came out before a lap could be completed for Joey Ternullo, Jr. who hit the backstretch wall.
Talman took the lead on the restart with Tyler Hines and Anthony Bello behind him. David Arute and Teddy Hodgdon were side by side for fourth with Arute taking the position just before the caution flew again with 2 laps complete for Bryan Narducci and Ronnie Williams, who made contact with each other and ended up in the turn 3 wall.
Talman took the lead back under green with Hines in second. Hines got loose on lap-4 which allowed Arute to take over second place with Hines getting back into line in third place. Bello was fourth in line with Keith Rocco right behind him in fifth. The caution came back out with 6 laps complete for Tyler Hines, who spun in the middle of turns 3+4.
Talman was back in front on the restart with Arute taking second after two laps of side by side racing with Hines. Dana DiMatteo spun in the middle of turns 1+2 to bring the caution back out with 7 laps complete.
Talman held off a challenge from Arute to maintain the lead on the restart with Hines and Arute wheel to wheel for second behind Talman. Arute got clear of Hines on lap-9 with Rocco in fourth and Todd Owen up to fifth. Hines got loose in the corner and he fell back to 16th place. Arute took the lead from Talman on lap-12 with a pass in turn 4. Rocco took second from Talman on lap-13 and Talman got loose in turn 2 on lap-14 and he slid back to outside the top-10 before his car slowed off the pace. The order with 17 laps complete was Arute, Rocco, Cory DiMatteo, Bello, and Marcello Rufrano making up the top-5 with Owen, Michael Gervais, Jr., Teddy Hodgdon, Dan Wesson, and Dylan Kopec rounding out the top-10.
Arute began to slowly stretch out his advantage over Rocco and with 10 laps to go the order was Arute, Rocco, Cory DiMatteo, Rufrano, Bello, Owen, Gervais, Wesson, Kopec, and Jon Puleo. The caution came out with 33 laps complete for Curt Brainard, who spun in turn 2.
Arute took the lead after a lap of side by side racing with Rocco with Rocco slotting into second. Rufrano moved up to third with Owen jumping up to fourth and Cory DiMatteo was fifth. Cory DiMatteo and Wesson both spun in the middle of turns 3+4 to bring the caution out with 36 laps complete.
Arute took the back under green with Rufrano pulling alongside Rocco for second. Rufrano took second on lap-37 and he brought Owen with him into third to drop Rocco back to fourth, just in front of Bello. Arute led Rufrano and Owen to the checkered flag to pick up his second win of the 2022 season. Rocco finished fourth with Bello rounding out the top-5.
In the 30-lap Late Model feature event, John Blake led the field to the green flag but Paul Varricchio, Jr. got into the wall coming out of turn 2 to bring the caution out before a lap could be completed.
Michael benentt took the lead from Blake on the restart but hje got loose on lap-2 which allowed Blake to go back to the front of the pack. Andrew Molleur took second with Kevin Gambacorta third, Michael Wray fourth and Adam Gray fifth with Bennett sliding back to sixth place. Gray made a move to the inside of Wray to take fourth on lap-4 just before Bennett backed his car into the turn 1 wall to bring the caution out with 4 laps complete.
Blake and Molleur went side by side for the lead back under green but the caution came out after only one more lap was able to be completed for a spin in the middle of turns 3+4 by Duane Noll.
Blake took the lead on the next restart with Molleur right behind him in second. Gambacorta maintained third place with Gray fourth and Wray in fifth. Gray continued his charge to the front by taking third place from Gambacorta on lap-9. Wray took fourth from Gambacorta on lap-10 and Ryan Fearn was now side by side with Gambacorta for fifth place on lap-10. Ryan Fearn took the spot on lap-11 with Wayne Coury, Jr. also getting by Gambacorta to move into sixth place. Coury went by Ryan Fearn on lap-12 to take over fifth place while Molleur had gotten around Blake to take over the race lead with Gray still in third.
With 10 laps to go, Molleur had a comfortable lead over Gray, who was now in second, Blake, Wray, and Tom Fearn. Gray couldn’t catch Molleur over the final laps as Molleur took down his first win of the 2022 season and ended Gray’s winning streak at four races. Blake came home in third place with Tom Fearn and Wray rounding out the top-5.
In the 20-lap SK Light feature event, Bob Charland took the lead from Charlie McDougall at the start of the race with McDougall settling into second place. Amanda West and Norm Sears were side by side for fourth place and Chris Matthews and Josh Carey were side by side for sixth place. Matthews was on the charge in the early going as he took third from West on lap-4 and then made a move to take second from McDougall on lap-5. Alexander Pearl spun in turn 4 and collected the cars of Cassandra Cole, Joey Ferrigno, Brett Casey, and Casey Vogt to bring the caution flag out with 7 laps complete.
Charland took the lead back under green with Tyler Barry shooting into second with Matthews third, West fourth, and Josh Carey in fifth. Barry took the lead from Charland on lap-9 just before Charland’s car dropped off the pace and came to a stop in turn 2 to bring the caution back out with 9 laps complete.
Barry took the lead back under green with West in second. West would lose second to George Bessette, Jr. on lap-12 with Carey up to fourth and Matthews in fifth. Sears was now sixth in line followed by Meghan Fuller, McDougall, Brandon Michael, and Pearl. Carey made a move to the inside of West to move into third place just before Tyler Chapman and McDougall spun in turn 4 with Chapman’s car collecting Hailey Desaulniers to bring the caution out with 17 laps complete and set up a three lap dash to the finish.
Bessette took the lead from Barry on the restart but the caution and red flags flew with 18 laps complete as Josh Carey got into the backstretch wall and ended up sliding down the backstretch on his roof with Pearl also spinning.
Bessette again took the lead on the restart with Barry slotting into second. Barry made a run to the outside of Bessette on the final lap with the two cars touching as they raced through turn 4 with Bessette leading Barry to the checkered flag to pick up his first win of the 2022 season. Matthews finished third with West and Sears rounding out the top-5.
In the 20-lap Limited Late Model feature event, Matt Clement took the early lead with Ari Jencik, Jeremy Lavoie, Jay Clement, and Matt Scappini lined up behind him. Lavoie made a move to the inside of Ari Jencik on lap-5 to move into second while Devon Jencik got by Scappini to move into fifth place.
At the halfway point of the race, Matt Clement was still out front with Lavoie giving chase. Devon Jencik worked his way up to third with Alexandra Fearn up to fourth and Scappini was fifth in line. Lavoie was slowly reeling Matt Clement in and by lap-12 he was less than a car length behind Clement for the lead.
The two lead cars deftly navigated lapped traffic over the closing laps and Lavoie was able to make a run coming out of turn 4 on the final lap, but he came up just a half car length short as Matt Clement took down his first win of the 2022 season. Devon Jencik finished third with Fearn and Scappini rounding out the top-5.
In the 20-lap Street Stock feature event, Chris Danielczuk led the field to the green flag and he took the early lead with Marvin Minkler right behind him in second. Kyle Johnson was third but he lost that position to Travis Downey on lap-2. Minkler took the lead from Danielczuk on lap-3 with Downey moving up to second. Bert Ouellette took third with Tyler Trott fourth and Adrien Paradis, III fifth as Danielczuk slid from the lead to outside the top-10.
Downey was applying heavy pressure to Minkler for the lead and he was able to take the lead on lap-8. Ouellette followed Downey by Minkler to move into second with Trott taking third, Paradis fourth, and Travis Hydar fifth as Minkler fell back to sixth place, just in front of Nickolas Hovey.
Hydar made a move to the inside of Paradis on lap-11 to move into fourth place while Ouellette was all over the back bumper of Downey in the fight for the race lead. Joe Marek spun in the middle of turns 1+2 which collected the car of Pat Grady and brought the caution flag out with 14 laps complete.
Downey and Ouellette ran side by side for a lap on the restart before Downey got clear into the lead. Trott was third in line with Hydar fourth and Paradis in fifth. Trott and Hydar touched with Trott sliding into the outside lane and dropping to the rear of the field on lap-17. Ouellette gave it all he had, but he couldn’t get close enough to make a move for the lead as Downey collected his first career win at Stafford. Hydar finished third with Hovey and Paradis rounding out the top-5.
SK MODIFIED® (40)
1) David Arute, Stafford Springs
2) Marcello Rufrano, North Haven
3) Todd Owen, Somers
4) Keith Rocco, Berlin
5) Anthony Bello, Newtown
6) Michael Gervais, Jr., Wolcott
7) Devin O’Connell, Madison
8) Dylan Kopec, East Longmeadow, MA
9) Ryan Flores, Huntersville, NC
10) Jon Puleo, Branford
11) Doug Meservey, Jr., Dennisport, MA
12) Dana DiMatteo, Farmington
13) Tyler Leary, Hatfield, MA
14) Mikey Flynn, Hampden, MA
15) Michael Christopher, Jr., Wolcott
16) Noah Korner, Avon
17) Dan Wesson, Monson, MA
18) Cory DiMatteo, Farmington
19) Stephen Kopcik, Newtown
20) John Montesanto, North Branford
21) Andrew Molleur, Shelton
22) Wesley Prucker, Stafford
23) Chris Jones, New Milford
24) Tyler Hines, North Haven
25) Nick Halkowicz, Shelton
26) Curt Brainard, Canton
27) Teddy Hodgdon, Danbury
28) Tyler Jones, New Milford
29) Troy Talman, Oxford, MA
30) Bryan Narducci, Colchester
31) Ronnie Williams, Tolland
32) Joey Ternullo, Jr., Middletown
LATE MODEL (30)
1) Andrew Molleur, Shelton
2) Adam Gray, Granby, MA
3) John Blake, North Haven
4) Tom Fearn, East Longmeadow, MA
5) Michael Wray, Durham
6) Darrell Keane, Enfield
7) Kevin Gambacorta, Ellington
8) Wayne Coury, Jr., Fairfield
9) Paul Arute, Northbridge, MA
10) Ryan Fearn, East Longmeadow, MA
11) Duane Noll, Monroe
12) Adon Burrell, Barkhamsted
13) Chris Meyer, North Franklin
14) Michael Bennett, Willington
15) Paul Varricchio, Jr., Berlin
SK LIGHT MODIFIED (20)
1) George Bessette, Jr., Danbury
2) Tyler Barry, Griswold
3) Chris Matthews, Stafford
4) Amanda West, Colchester
5) Norm Sears, Coventry
6) Brandon Michael, Granville, MA
7) Meghan Fuller, Auburn, MA
8) Frank L’Etoile, Jr., Wethersfield
9) Ron Midford, Jr., Ellington
10) Glenn Bartkowski, Manchester
11) Andy Marchese, Tolland
12) Cassandra Cole, Westbrook
13) Brandon Hunt, Windsor
14) Anthony Forino, Waterbury
15) Stephen Kalogiannis, New Hartford
16) Alina Bryden, West Springfield, MA
17) Josh Carey, Belchertown, MA
18) Alexander Pearl, Salem
19) William Lambros, Northport, NY
20) Ed Chicoski, New Hartford
21) Charlie McDougall, Wallingford
22) Tyler Chapman, Ellington
23) Chris Bagnall, Norfolk
24) Hailey Desaulniers, Windham
25) Casey Vogt, Windsor Locks
26) Bob Charland, Stafford
27) Jason Chapman, Ellington
28) Derek Debbis, Oakdale
29) Joey Ferrigno, East Hartford
30) Brett Casey, Meriden
LIMITED LATE MODEL (20)
1) Matt Clement, Wethersfield
2) Jeremy Lavoie, Windsor Locks
3) Devon Jencik, Canton
4) Alexandra Fearn, East Longmeadow, MA
5) Matt Scappini, Litchfield
6) Rich Hammann, Tolland
7) Gary Patnode, New Hartford
8) Ari Jencik, Canton
9) Jay Clement, Wethersfield
10) Kevin Cormier, Agawam, MA
11) Damian Palardy, Willington
12) David Shinder, West Granby
13) Scott Clement, Wethersfield
14) Trinity Provost, Holland, MA
15) Dana Wray, Durham
STREET STOCK (20)
1) Travis Downey, Barkhamsted
2) Bert Ouellette, Ellington
3) Travis Hydar, Woodbury
4) Nickolas Hovey, Chaplin
5) Adrien Paradis, III, Plainville
6) Bobby Stirk, III, Naugatuck
7) Kyle Johnson, Manchester
8) Johnny Walker, Agawam, MA
9) Marvin Minkler, Stamford
10) Jason Finkbein, Manchester
11) Bill Cote, Belchertown, MA
12) David Macha, Sr., Columbia
13) David Macha, Jr., Columbia
14) Chris Danielczuk, Goshen
15) Tyler Trott, East Hartford
16) Rob Sears, Stafford Springs
17) Samantha Dell, Harrisville, RI
18) Cindy Stirk, Naugatuck
19) Henry Hughes, Granville, NY
20) Patrick Grady, Berlin
21) Joe Marek, Stafford Springs
22) Gary Spinnato, Jr., Wallingford