(Stafford Springs, CT)—With the NAPA Auto Parts Fall Final at Stafford Motor Speedway set to take the green flag this weekend, October 8 & 9, five track championships remain up for grabs. Rowan Pennink has already clinched the SK Modified® track championship, Stafford’s Late Models, SK Lights, Limited Late Models, DARE Stocks, and Legend Cars divisions will all see a champion crowned at the conclusion of the weekend.
The 2016 Late Model division has been dominated by Tom Fearn and the #92 SAFCO Foam team with the East Longmeadow, MA driver racking up 7 wins this season. The Fearn team won 3 of the first 5 races this season to establish themselves as championship contenders. Michael Wray and the #42 DMW Graphics team have been their main championship rivals for the 2016 season. While not as dominant as the Fearn team, Wray’s team has been a model of consistency in only their second season of Late Model competition. Wray has notched top-7 finishes in each of the 15 Late Model feature events this season, including his second career victory back in July. Entering the Fall Final, Fearn leads Wray by 24 points or 12 positions on the track. All Fearn needs to do is finish in the top-13 to clinch the championship. Wray must finish at least 13 positions in front of Fearn this weekend if he is to become the 2016 Late Model champion.
The race for the SK Light championship has been a back and forth affair for much of the 2016 season between Tony Membrino, Jr. and Joey Ferrigno. Membrino began the 2016 season looking as if he would easily romp to the track title by winning 4 of the first 5 feature events with his #44 Additive Manufacturing of New England machine. Ferrigno was not quite as dominant in his #87 RH2 Way Communications car but he was consistently finding himself on the podium and with Membrino encountering several troublesome nights, Ferrigno was able to peck away at the point lead and he enters the Fall Final 18 points behind Membrino. Also in the championship mix are the #2 RH2 Way Communications car of Joe Graf, Jr. and the #07 Goff Motorsports machine of Jay Goff. Graf is 24 points behind and Goff is a longshot at 36 points behind. If Membrino finishes 10th or higher, he wins the championship. Ferrigno will need to finish at least 10 positions in front of Membrino, no more than 2 spots behind Graf if Graf wins or 3 spots behind if Graf doesn’t win, and no more than positions behind Goff. Graf needs to finish at least 13 positions in front of Membrino, 4 spots in front of Ferrigno, and no more than 6 spots behind Goff to win. Goff is a true longshot, needing to finish at least 19 spots in front of Membrino, 10 spots front of Ferrigno, and 7 spots in front of Graf.
Stafford’s Limited Late Model championship race will come down to Al Saunders and Duane Provost. Saunders is the defending LLM champion with his #04 American Sleeve Bearing Chevrolet and with a 12 point lead over Provost, he needs only to finish 6th or better, which he has done in 14 of the 16 races this season. Provost will need to finish at least 6 positions in front of Saunders in order for him to become the track champion.
Stafford’s DARE Stock division has been a season long duel between Johnny Walker and Brandon Michael. Walker finished second in the DARE Stock standings in 2013 and 2014 before sitting out the 2015 season. His return to DARE Stock competition has seen him be a model of consistency, placing the #01 Dunleavy’s Truck & Trailer Repair Chevrolet in the top-5 in 15 of 16 races. He holds a 16 point margin over Michael, who has been in the top-10 in all 16 races but he has three fewer top-5’s than Walker. If Walker finishes 8th or higher, he is the champion. Michael will need to finish at least 8 spots in front of Walker if he is to become champion.
Last but not least, the Legend Cars division has been a season long tussle between Noah Korner in the #31 Midstate Site Development Coupe and Teddy Hodgdon in the #28 Champion Spark Plugs Coupe. Between them, they have combined to win 9 of the 10 races this season and with a 12 point lead, Korner will clinch the championship if he finishes 7th or better. For Hodgdon to win the title, he must finish at least 7 spots in front of Hodgdon.
The 2016 NAPA Auto Parts Fall Final Weekend gets underway on Saturday, October 8th with practice sessions for Stafford’s Whelen All-American Series divisions, Legend Cars, TQ Midgets, Mr. Rooter Truck Series, and the Whelen Modified Tour. Action continues with Coors Light Pole Qualifying for the Whelen Modified Tour cars, along with heat races for all divisions except for the Legend Cars. Feature events for the SK Light, Limited Late Model, DARE Stock, TQ Midgets, and Mr. Rooter Truck Series divisions will wrap up Saturday’s on track activities. The NAPA Fall Final continues on Sunday, October 9th with the NAPA Auto Parts Pit Party from 11am-12noon followed by feature events for Stafford’s SK Modifieds®, Late Models, Whelen Modified Tour, and Legend Cars.
Tickets for the NAPA Auto Parts Fall Final Weekend are on sale now at the Speedway Box Office. Tickets are priced at $38.50 for adult general admission tickets, $5.00 for children ages 6-14, and children ages 5 and under are admitted free of charge when accompanied by an adult. Reserved seating will be priced at $42.00 for all ages. All ticket prices include 10% CT Admission Tax. Visit your local participating NAPA Auto Parts Store for discount tickets.
For more information on the 44th Annual NAPA Auto Parts Fall Final, or to order tickets, contact the Stafford Motor Speedway track office at 860-684-2783 or visit us on the web at www.staffordspeedway.com.