(Stafford Springs, CT)—Stafford Speedway returned to racing action on Friday, July 8 with the 6th Annual Dunleavy’s Modifiedz Night with the SK Lights taking center stage with a 40-lap extra distance event that paid a guaranteed $1,750 to win. Brian Sullivan was the big winner of the night, taking his fourth win of the season in the extra distance, extra money Dunleavy’s Modifiedz Night feature event. Other feature winners were Marcello Rufrano taking win #2 of 2023 in the SK Modified® feature, Tom Fearn made it back to back wins and 3 wins overall in the Late Model feature, Matt Clement took down his third win of the season in the Limited Late Model feature, and Travis Hydar scored his third win of the season in the Street Stock feature. As part of Kids Night, there were two Kids Big Wheel races that were won by Joseph Davenport and Charles Hamer.
In the 40-lap Dunleavy’s Modifiedz Night SK Light feature event, Zach Aszklar led the field to the green and he led the first lap but Meghan Fuller took over the lead on lap-2. Alexander Pearl took second from Aszklar and then he moved by Fuller to take the lead on lap-3. Amanda West went to the outside of Aszklar to move into third on lap-4 just before the caution flew for Frank L’Etoile, Jr. and Ed Chicoski who both spun coming out of turn 4.
Pearl took the lead on the restart with West taking second. Fuller settled into third with Aszklar fourth and Chris Matthews fifth. Aszklar made a move to the inside of Fuller on lap-8 to move into third and that move opened the door for Matthews to take fourth, Brian Sullivan fifth, and William Lambros sixth as Fuller slid back to seventh. Fuller and West were starting to stretch out their advantage over the chasing cars as the race approached lap-15 while third through 11th place were all running nose to tail in a pack of cars. The caution came back out with 19 laps complete as Fuller came to a stop at the exit of turn 2.
The caution came right back out before the field completed a full lap as the cars of Jason Chapman, Matt Brewer, Paul Arcari, Bob Charland, Daltin McCarthy, Norm Sears, and Sami Anderson all got into the turn 4 wall while David Webb slid through the infield grass.
West took the lead on the restart with Sullivan moving into second. Pearl fell back to third in line with Tyler Chapman and Tyler Barry wheel to wheel for fourth place. The caution came back out with 22 laps complete for Stephen Kalogiannis, who spun in turn 2.
Sullivan took the lead on the outside of West as the race went back to green. Tyler Chapman also went by West to take second. Aszklar spun in turn 4 to bring the caution back out with 23 laps complete.
Sullivan and Tyler Chapman went wheel to wheel on the restart for the lead with Sullivan holding the lead by a nose at the line. Pearl was third in line with Barry and West fighting wheel to wheel for fourth place. Chapman took the lead from Sullivan by a nose at the line on lap-267 just before the caution came back out for Nick Anglace, who came to a stop on the backstretch access road.
Tyler Chapman and Sullivan resumed their wheel to wheel duel for the race lead on the restart with Sullivan getting clear into the lead on lap-28. Barry was now third in line behind Sullivan and Chapman with Pearl fourth, Matthews fifth, and George Bessette, Jr. sixth. Pearl took third from Barry on lap-30 while Bessette took fifth from Matthews on lap-31 as Sullivan continued to lead with Tyler Chapman, Pearl, and Barry making up a four-car train in the fight for the lead.
Pearl took second from Tyler Chapman on lap-33 and after two laps of side by side racing, finally got clear into second on lap-35. Bessette had closed in on the top-4 cars to now make a 5-car train for the lead with 5 laps to go. The caution came back out with 37 laps complete for Casey Vogt, who spun in turn 4.
Sullivan wasted no time in immediately taking the lead on the restart while Pearl and Tyler Chapman were wheel to wheel for second. Pearl took the spot on lap-39 while Bessette and Barry were wheel to wheel for fourth. Pearl closed in on the bumper of Sullivan but couldn’t quite make a pass for the lead as Sullivan took down his fourth win of the 2023 season. Pearl finished second with Tyler Chapman, Bessette, and Barry rounding out the top-5.
In the 40-lap SK Modified® feature event, the caution flag came out right away as Jimmy Blewett took a trip through the frontstretch grass on the start.
Tyler Hines took the lead on the second race start with Noah Korner right on his bumper in second. Dylan Kopec was third with Michael Gervais, Jr, fourth and the side by side duo of David Arute and Troy Talman were fighting for fifth. Korner took the lead from Hines on lap-3 while the caution came out with 3 laps complete as RJ Marcotte, Todd Owen, and Michael Christopher, Jr. all got into the wall in turn 3.
Kopec made a power move in turns 3+4 to snatch the lead away from Korner on the restart. Talman was third in line behind the two leaders with Marcello Rufrano up to fourth and Cory DiMatteo in fifth. Just behind DiMatteo was Hines, Gervais, Mikey Flynn, Anthony Flannery, and Arute. Owen took a slide through the backstretch grass to bring the caution flag back out with 8 laps complete.
Kopec took the lead back under green with Rufrano moving into second. Rufrano took the lead from Kopec on lap-11 with DiMatteo looking to make things 3-wide but he settled back into third. DiMatteo took second from Kopec on lap-12 with Korner now in fourth behind Kopec with Hines in fifth. At the halfway point, it was still Rufrano in command with DiMatteo, Kopec, Korner, and Hines behind him. Flynn was sixth with Flannery, Talman, Arute, and Jon Puleo making up the top-10.
The top-5 cars remained the same with 10 laps to go in the race. Art Caruso spun coming out of turn 4on lap-33 but he was able to keep going and the race stayed green. Rufrano had pulled away from DiMatteo to hold a comfortable lead of nearly a full straightaway. Rufrano cruised to his second win of the 2023 season with DiMatteo, Kopec, Korner, and Hines rounding out the top-5.
In the 30-lap Late Model feature event, John Blake took the early lead at the drop of the green flag with Alexandra Fearn settling into second. Paul Varricchio, Jr. was third in line with Anderw Durand fourth and Chris Meyer in fifth. Varricchio took second from Fearn on lap-2 and that move opened the door for Durand to take third from Fearn and drop her back to fourth. Chris Meyer and Fearn spun in turn 2 which collected the cars of Adam Gray, Tom Butler, Chris Meyer, Zack Robinson, and Jacob Perry to bring the caution out with 2 laps complete.
Blake took the lead with Durand in second but only one lap was completed before the caution came back out for Butler and Perry, who both spun through the grass in turn 3.
Blake led lap-3 but Durand powered his way around Blake on lap-4 to take the lead by a nose at the line. Michael Wray went 3-wide on lap-5 to get past both Durand and Blake to move into the lead. Tom Fearn came up to second with Varricchio third, Gray fourth, and Blake fell back to fifth. Fearn went by Wray on lap-7 to move into the race lead and Varricchio took second from Wray on lap-10. Gray was still in fourth with Darrell Keane fifth and Kevin Gambacorta sixth.
At the halfway point of the race Fearn was still in command with Varricchio, Gray, Wray, and Keane behind him. Gambacorta was still sixth followed by Butler, Wayne Coury, Jr., Durand, and Perry. Wray fell from fourth back to sixth on lap-16 as Keane took fourth and Gambacorta fifth. Fearn was starting to stretch out his advantage over Varricchio in second and Varricchio would fall from second back to eighth on lap-22 as Gray, Keane, Gambacorta, Butler, Wray, and Durand all got by and moved up a position.
Gray couldn’t get close enough to Fearn to make a bid for the lead as Fearn took down his second consecutive and third overall feature win of the 2023 season. Keane finished third with Gambacorta and Butler rounding out the top-5.
In the 20-lap Limited Late Model feature event, Christopher Phelps and Gary Patnode brought the field to the green flag and they raced side by side for a lap before Patnode took the lead. Matt Clement moved up to second with Jeremy Lavoie taking third, Adrien Paradis, III fourth, and Devon Jencik fifth as Phelps slid all the way back to ninth place.
Clement was hounding Patnode for the lead and he was able to make a pass on lap-7 to take over the top spot. Lavoie followed Clement by Patnode to drop Patnode back to third, just in front of Paradis and Devon Jencik. Paradis took third from Patnode on lap-10 and that move brought Jencik up to fourth and dropped Patnode back to fifth as Clement continued to lead Lavoie at the front of the pack. Phelps spun in turn 1 to bring the caution flag out with 12 laps complete.
Clement took the lead on the restart with Lavoie right behind him in second. Paradis was third with Jencik fourth and Damien Palardy fifth. Kevin Cormier took fifth from Palardy on lap-14 and his move opened the door for Rich Hammann to take sixth from Palardy on lap-15. Lavoie couldn’t get close enough to Clement as Clement took down his third win of the 2023 season. Jencik finished third with Paradis and Cormier rounding out the top-5.
In the 20-lap Street Stock feature event, Jason Raymond led the field to the green flag and he took the early lead with Chris Danielczuk right behind him in second. Jeff Asselin settled into third with Bert Ouellette fourth and Tyler Trott in fifth. With 5 laps complete, Raymond was still in command with Danielczuk, Asselin, and Ouellette behind him. Brandon Plemons was now in fifth as Trott had fallen back to 11th place.
Travis Hydar took fifth from Plemons on lap-9, he took fourth on lap-10, and he moved into third on lap-11. Hydar was about to take second from Danielczuk but the caution came out with 12 laps complete for Jason Finkbein, who did a half spin coming out of turn 2 and came to a stop on the backstretch grass.
Hydar streaked into the lead on the restart while the action behind him was wild and furious. Ryan Waterman worked his way through traffic going 3-wide to move up to second behind Hydar with Travis Downey third, Raymond fourth, and Plemons fifth. Alex Spinnato spun in turn 2 to bring the caution flag out with 19 laps complete to set up a green white checkered finish.
Hydar took the lead on the restart with Downey taking second from Waterman. Ouellette spun coming out of turn 4 to bring the caution flag back out and set up a second green white checkered attempt.
Hydar took the lead again back under green with Downey taking second. Waterman was third with Johnny Walker and Plemons side by side for fourth. Hydar led the field to the checkered flag to pick up his third win of the 2023 season. Downey finished second with Waterman, Plemons, and Trott rounding out the top-5.
For more information contact the Stafford Motor Speedway track office at (860) 684-2783, or visit us on the web at www.staffordspeedway.com.