(Stafford Springs, CT)—Over the past several seasons, Jeff Gallup has been agonizingly close to winning a race at Stafford Speedway. Gallup and the #4 C & G Surfacing / Ceravolo’s Auto Team has led laps and run with the leaders in both Valenti Modified Racing Series and Open Modified feature events only to come up short at the checkered flag. In this Friday night’s Open Modified 80 the tables may turn for Gallup and the #4 team.
Over the winter Gallup switched from a SPAFCO chassis to an LFR Chassis, with the new car Gallup has posted a win and two top 10 finishes in events at Thompson and Lee. Fresh off his first Modified Racing Series win at Lee Speedway along with a second place finish in his last start at Stafford last August in the Lincoln Tech Modified Racing Series 80, Gallup has high hopes for securing his first Stafford victory.
“This is a new car for us, we switched from SPAFCO to LFR over the winter,” said Gallup. “The car was really good up at Lee and Stafford is always one of the races that we look forward to coming to. Hopefully we can be fast at the end of the race. Coming off the win at Lee it gives me more confidence that we can close the deal and be competitive throughout the whole race. We finished second in our last race at Stafford last August so we feel pretty good about our chances this Friday night.”
Gallup has shown that he is the type of driver who likes to get out front as quickly as possible and lead as many laps as possible. With the Open Mod 80, Gallup and the field will have the opportunity to pit for two new tires during the race and Gallup thinks this will help make his #4 car be good for the entire 80-lap run.
“We get to change two tires and Stafford doesn’t wear the tires as quickly as at Lee so I feel like we’ll be able to have the tires last for the whole race,” said Gallup. “The biggest thing is being able to be around the front with 10 laps to go so you can capitalize on the track position and try to go for the win. I’d love to be able to lead all 80 laps of the race but the key will be to have a car that is fast all night long from practice to the heat to the feature. If you can do that and be towards the front at the end of the race, you’re giving yourself the best chance to win.”
In order for Gallup to secure his first Stafford victory, he will have to beat out a stout field of drivers lined up for the Open Mod 80. There are 9 drivers (Chase Dowling, Andrew Molleur, Tommy Barrett, Jr., Joey Cipriano, Dave Etheridge, Mark Bakaj, Eric Goodale, Todd Owen, and Richard Savary) who have won races at Stafford and 5 drivers (Matt Galko, Michael Gervais, Jr., Ronnie Williams, Marcello Rufrano, and Keith Rocco) who have won races and championships at Stafford.
“It always seems to be the same fast cars that show up at Stafford,” said Gallup. “This new LFR car has been pretty stout right out of the box and we’ve showed that we can run up front with those guys in the past, so we’re looking forward to the race. I’ve watched my Dad win a bunch of SK races at Stafford and it would mean a lot to me to join him on the winners list at Stafford.”
The Open Mod 80 will share the spotlight on May 24 with Dunleavy’s Modifiedz Night being the longest and biggest race of the 2019 SK Light season with over $10,000 in total posted awards up for grabs. With contingency bonuses, the winner of the Dunleavy’s Modifiedz Night feature will take home $2,025. Tickets for the May 24 Open Mod 80 / Dunleavy’s Modifiedz Night are $30.00 for adults, $5.00 for kids 6-14, and as always 5 & under free. Reserved seating is priced at $32.00 for all ages. All tickets include 10% CT Admission Tax. General admission gates open at 5:15pm, with qualifying races beginning at 6:00pm and feature races to follow.
For more information, contact the Stafford Motor Speedway track office at 860-684-2783 or visit us on the web at www.staffordspeedway.com.