(Stafford Springs, CT)—Fresh off of winning R.A.D. Auto Machine 2022 Rookie of the Year honors in Stafford Speedway’s Limited Late Model division, Agawam, MA native Kevin Cormier and the #14 Gendon Auto Parts / Garrett’s Carpentry team have continued the hot streak that they began towards the end of his rookie season. In the final 8 races of the 2022 season, Cormier produced 2 wins and 7 top-5 finishes and he has carried that over to the 2023 season where after a season opening fourth place finish, he won and nearly went back to back with a second place finish.
“I think it’s been a mix of everything from knowing how to set the cars up and knowing how to drive the cars,” said Cormier. “The more time we spend in the division the faster we get because we understand the cars. In any division that we’ve ever raced in, we usually come on during the summer, like we did last year, so it was a little surprising to us that we’ve been able to be this good right from the start of the season.”
Cormier’s on-track performance has him eagerly anticipating the Riley Generators 30 this Friday night, June 9, as he notched a second place finish in last year’s extra distance Limited Late Model feature event.
“I prefer the longer races,” said Cormier. “Sometimes the 20 lappers we have are just too short unless you lead the race from start to finish, then the race can get kind of long. Last year we led for most of the race and then we lost the lead to Rich Hammann with like four laps to go. This season we’re hoping that we hit the setup just right and we can bide our time. Hopefully we can either be the person taking the lead late in the race from someone else or be the car that leads the whole race.”
In addition to the 10 extra laps that the Limited Late Model drivers will face, they will also have to contend with a track that will be cooler in the later evening hours compared to when the Limited cars normally race towards the beginning of a Friday night.
“I think we’ll tighten the car up a little just because the track temperature is going to be a little lower and that usually loosens up the track,” said Cormier. “We’ll have to make sure we tighten the car up enough and then hope for the best and go from there. Even with the extra laps I’m sure some people are going to try to win the race on lap-1 so we just have to avoid any wrecks and if we can do that, we should be pretty good. If we can be in the top-5 around lap-15 or so, we should be in pretty good shape.”
Cormier’s hot start to the 2023 season not only has him excited about his prospects of winning the Riley Generators 30, but sees him sitting second in the points standings, only 2 points, or 1 position on the track, behind Matt Clement, who has won 2 of the opening 3 races this season. Cormier credits the work his team performs in their shop every week as the key to maintaining their level of performance to make a championship run this season.
“While I know that I’m second in the points, I also know I probably shouldn’t be checking that out this early in the season,” said Cormier. “Maybe I’ll take a look at the standings halfway through the season and then again towards the end of the season when it becomes really important. Our success comes down to all the time we spend in the shop. After each race we’re in the shop with the car on the scales, seeing what worked and what didn’t work, taking notes on any adjustments we’ve made, and then we go through the entire car and look for anything that might break or needs to be fixed. I have to give a big thank you to all of our sponsors for their support, Garrett’s Carpentry, Gendon Auto, Chicopee Concrete, Marcoux Concrete, Cichetti Teamwork, Industry Electric, Main Street Grille, Unique Wraps / Glass, The Napken, Avery Construction, Horsepower Hill Farm, Save N Time, Rocking My Sewjo, First Peak Construction, The Growth Company, Ursa Security, East Coast Mobile Sandblasting, Joe Hamm, R.A.D. Auto Machine, and Williams Race Gears.”
The Riley Generators Limited Late Model 30 is scheduled for Friday, June 9 and Stafford’s SK Modifieds®, Late Models, SK Lights, and Street Stocks as well as a Kids Big Wheel race will all join the Limited Late Model cars in feature racing action. Tickets for the Riley Generators 30 program are priced at $20.00 for adults, and kids 14 and under are free. Reserved seating is priced at $25.00 for all ages and pit passes are $40.00 with a valid 2023 Stafford Speedway Competition License and $45.00 without. If you are unable to attend the Riley Generators Limited Late Model 30 in person, tune into the live stream on FloRacing, the official streaming partner of Stafford Speedway.
For more information, visit www.staffordspeedway.com, checkout Stafford Speedway on Facebook or Twitter, or contact the track office at 860-684-2783.