THE Fourth of July has come and gone and area short tracks are settling into their weekly summer schedules, which include some special events and touring series races here and there over the rest of the month.
Among the upcoming choices: the Valenti Modified Series Friday at Lee USA (twin 50’s), the Granite State Pro Stock Series Gate City Classic 100 at Hudson Speedway on Sunday, the Pro All Star Series at Oxford Plains on Sunday, Mid-Season Championship Double Points Night Saturday at Bear Ridge, the 40th VP Fuels Vermont Governor’s Cup on Thursday, July 18 at Thunder Road and NASCAR Cup weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway July 18-20. And … don’t forget the Tri-Track Modified Series SBM VIII 125 on Saturday, July 26 at Star.
Several Granite State Pro Stock teams are going to be busy with repairs prior to Sunday’s race at Hudson. Several cars got torn up at Lee USA after Todd Stone‘s machine put down a lot of fluid in the first turn triggering a wreck that heavily damaged Ryan Green‘s front end and sidelined Ben Rowe, Josh King and Jake Mattheson. Points leader Joey Doiron won the race ahead of a hard-fought duel between Devin O’Connell (second) and Jeremy Davis (third).
Heavyweights Joey Polewarczyk Jr. and Wayne Helliwell Jr. are expected to compete in the Gate City Classic, where they’ll get a firsthand look at the refurbished pit area and the new backstretch wall.
Todd Patnode won the most recent Valenti Modified Series event amidst the raindrops at Monadnock. The race was called after 67 laps. Jeff Gallup and Rob Richardi finished second and third.
This Saturday, it’s Christmas in July at the Winchester oval. Fans bringing unwrapped toys for charity will be given a $5 discount on adult tickets – not counting seniors, who are granted $5 off on a weekly basis.
Louis Maher of Baldwinville, Mass., won the Mini Stock feature, which was itself shortened a bit by rain. This week’s schedule includes the make-up of the rained-out Street Stock feature. The Late Model Sportsman make-up race will take place July 27.
Justin Bonsignore won the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour event at Riverhead Raceway on Long Island in a bruiser that clicked off 68 of 200 laps under yellow. Don’t you just love NASCAR’s caution-laps-count rule?
There was last-lap contact between Bonsignore and runner-up John Beatty Jr., a Riverhead regular. Bonsignore crossed the finish line sideways for the win and gained a little ground on Tour points leader Doug Coby (sixth). Positions 3-5 went to Timmy Solomito, Ron Silk and Craig Lutz.
Saturday at Star Speedway, the 350 Supers return after a two-week absence and the Street Stocks will compete in a Fast 40 Series event presented by Storace Construction. Last week, Anthony Belfiore outlasted Alby Ovitt in the Street Stock main. Ovitt pitted twice along the way.
Eighteen 350 Supers were at Wiscasset Speedway in Maine, including many Star regulars. Grizzled veteran Sparky MacIver was first to the line followed by Dave Helliwell and Matt Seavey of Auburn.
At next Thursday’s Vermont Governor’s Cup at Thunder Road, the Late Model field will include NASCAR Xfinity Series Joe Gibbs Racing hotshoe Christopher Bell of Norman, Okla. Bell is a real talent who excels on both asphalt and dirt. He has 12 Xfinity Series wins and is a three-time and defending winner of the Chili Bowl – the biggest dirt midget event worldwide.
Another competitor at the Governor’s Cup will be – who else? – Vermont Gov. Phil Scott, who was a recent feature winner at the “Nation’s Site of Excitement.”
Nick Sweet of Barre, Vt., had a big weekend at White Mountain Motorsports Park. The North Woodstock track ran 100-lap races for the Foley Propane & Oil Tour-type Late Models on Friday and Saturday and Sweet won both nights. In the Springboard 100 on Friday, he started 12th in a 19-car field, had the lead 16 laps in, and was never threatened the rest of the way. Stephen Donahue finished second after swapping the spot back and forth with multi-time White Mountain champion Quinny Welch throughout the race.
Sweet started 12th the next night, but this time it took him 80 laps to gain the lead. Jeff Marshall was the runner-up ahead of Donahue.
This week it’s Country Camper of Epsom Mid-Season Night Championships Night with double points on the line and an additional Late Model 50, which was originally rained out June 25.
It’s also Mid-Season Championship Double Points Night at Speedway 51 in Groveton and Bear Ridge Speedway.
On Track This Weekend
Thunder Road (Vt.): Thursday, 7 p.m.
Claremont: Friday, 7 p.m.
Lee USA: Friday, 7 p.m.
Rumtown: Saturday, 4 p.m.
Bear Ridge (Vt.): Saturday, 6 p.m.
Monadnock: Saturday 6 p.m.
Speedway 51: Saturday, 6 p.m.
Star Speedway: Saturday, 6 p.m.
White Mountain: Saturday, 6:30 p.m.
Hudson: Sunday, 5 p.m.
Oxford Plains (Maine): Sunday, 6 p.m.