Celebrating 25 years, 1995 - 2020

Arute takes Checkers in Limited Late Model Feature

For Immediate Release
Scott Running 
May 17, 2013

(Stafford Springs, CT)---Stafford Speedway was back in Friday night action with the DARE Stock division taking center stage for a 20-lap Xtra Mart Xtra D feature, paying an extra $50 to each of the top-5 finishers.  Jeremy Lavoie was the big winner of the night, driving to his second consecutive victory in the DARE Stock feature.  Rowan Pennink picked up his first career SK Modified® victory in the 40-lap feature, Tom Fearn was the winner of the extra distance 35-lap Late Model feature, Tony Membrino was the winner in the 20-lap SK Light Modified feature, and David Arute was the winner in the 20-lap Limited Late Model feature.

In the 40-lap SK Modified® feature event, Rowan Pennink went around Michael Gervais, Jr. to take the lead with Ted Christopher moving into second.  A melee broke out going into turn 3 that involved several cars and brought the caution out.

Pennink took the lead on the restart with Glen Reen moving from fourth to pull alongside Christopher in a fight for second.  Christopher got a good run and was able to get clear of Reen in second, with Sean Foster and and Keith Rocco behind him.  Doug Coby and Woody Pitkat were side by side for sixth place, with Joey Cipriano and Danny Cates side by side for eighth.  The field quickly settled into single file with Pennink leading Christopher, Reen, Foster, Rocco, Pitkat, Coby, and Cipriano with 8 laps on the scoreboard.  The caution came out with 10 laps complee for a spin by Zach Aszklar on the frontstretch.

Pennink took the lead on the restart with Reen again giving Christopher a brief look for second before falling into line behind him.  Frank Ruocco and Cipriano got together and spun on the backstretch to bring the caution back out with 12 laps complete.

Pennink took the lead back under green with Foster making a huge run in the outside groove to move into second place.  Christopher settled into line behind Foster, with Pitkat, Reen, and Rocco lined up nose to tail behind him.  Pennink was still in the lead just ahead of Foster, but Reen had taken over third, Christopher was fourth, Rocco was fifth, and Coby was sixth with 15 laps remaining in the race.  Pitkat appeared to be slightly off the pace he was running earlier and he was running in seventh place, but he was losing time and slowly falling back.  The same fate befell Rocco on lap-30, but he dropped off the pace and crept his way onto pit road.

Foster was hounding Pennink for the race lead, looking high and low for a way to take over the race lead.  Reen was still third ahead of Christopher, with Coby running in fifth.  Foster would look high, look low and then fall back a bit to try the process all over again.  The two cars touched on lap-36, which gave Pennink a margin over Reen and Foster, but Joe Williams and Tommy Membrino, Jr. came together and hit the wall coming out of turn 4 to bring the caution out with 35 laps complete and erase that margin.

The restart was a side by side affair as Pennink and Foster were just ahead of Reen and Christopher.  The four cars rode side by side for several laps before falling into single file with 2 laps to go.  Foster tried everything he could to get by Pennink, but Pennink held him off at the checkered for his first career SK Modified® feature victory.  Reen finished third, with Christopher and Coby rounding out the top-5.

In the 30-lap Late Model feature event, Dennis Botticello took the lead from the pole but by the time the first lap had been completed, Kevin Gambacorta was alongside Botticello for the lead.  Gambacorta took the lead on lap-2 and Jim Mavlouganes, Tom Fearn, Adam Gray, and Woody Pitkat all got by Botticello, who fell from the lead back to sixth place.  This was the running order when the caution came out with 2 laps complete for a spin by George Nocera, Jr. in turns 3+4.

Gambacorta took the lead back under green with Fearn powering his way into second.  Mavlouganes settled into line in third place, with last week’s winner Adam Gray in fourth and Woody Pitkat was fifth.  Fearn made a move by Gambacorta in turn 1 on lap-5 to take over the lead and that move opened the door for Mavlouganes, Gray, and Pitkat to follow Fearn past Gambacorta.  Dennis Botticello and Andrew Durand came together on the frontstretch with Botticello doing a great job of dirt tracking his car through the corner and keeping his car off the wall.  Behind Botticello’s slide Cory Casagrande spun to bring the caution out with 7 laps complete.

The restart was a wild affair as Gray was looking three-wide to the inside of both Fearn and Mavlouganes for the lead.  Fearn was able to hold them both off and he kept the lead.  Gray and Mavlouganes were now side by side for second, with Pitkat, Gambacorta, Peter Portante, Durand, and Mark St. Hilaire lined up behind him.  Gray got by Mavlouganes and Pitkat followed him by as Mavlouganes fell back two spots to foruth place.  
In a repeat of last week’s thrilling finish. Gray was beginning to work Fearn over in a bid to take over the race lead.  But that action was halted by the caution, which came out with 13 laps complete for a spin in turns 1+2 by Art Caruso.

Fearn got a good restart and pulled away from Fearn enough to allow Pitkat to pull alongside Gray.  Mavlouganes was tucked right behind Pitkat in fourth with Gambacorta in fifth.  Pitkat got by Gray to take over second, while Fearn was able to pull away by several car lengths.  Mavlouganes was still fourth , with Gambacorta, Durand, and Jay Stuart behind him on lap-17. 

With 10 laps to go, Fearn was still the leader with Pitkat, Gray, Mavlouganes, Gambacorta, and Stuart behind him.  The top-6 cars were running nearly identical lap times, with Pitkat and Gray ever so slowly closing in on Fearn in the lead.  Fearn led the field back to the checkered flag to pick up his first win of the season.  Pitkat finished second, with Gray, Mavlouganes, and Gambacorta rounding out the top-5.

In the 20-lap SK Light Modified feature event, Tony Santangelo took the lead at the green, but he was quickly passed by Jay Goff.  Goff held the lead until lap-5 when Tony Membrino, Jr. went around Goff to take over the lead.  Ronnie Williams was third behind Goff, with some distance back to Santangelo in fourth and Shayne Prucker in fifth place.

Membrino was beginning to pull away from Goff and Williams at the halfway point of the feature, with Santangelo and Prucker continuing to lose ground to the top-3.  Prucker was finally able to get by Santangelo on lap-14 to move into fourth and on the next lap, Bob Charland, last week’s winner Troy Talman, and Chase Dowling all got by Santangelo.

Williams got by Goff for second on lap-15, but Membrino now enjoyed a commanding lead of nearly a half straightaway over Williams.  Membrino cruised to the checkered flag to pick up his first win of the 2013 season.  Williams finished second, with Goff, Charland, and Prucker rounding out the top-5.

In the 20-lap Limited Late Model feature event, Glenn Bartkowski took the lead at the green flag with Duane Provost, Don Wood, Jesse Hinze, and David Arute lined up behind him.  Don Wood made a move by Provost for second on lap-4 and Hinze and Arute followed him by Provost. 

At the front, Don Wood was stalking Bartkowski for the lead, but Bartkowski was able to stay in front.  That all changed on lap-6 when Bartkowski slid up the track in turn 4, which allowed Don Wood, Hinze, Arute, and Provost to all get by Bartkowski.  Bartkowski continued to backslide through the field as Josh Wood, D.J. Burnham, and Austin Bessette all got by the following lap.

Don Wood had a several car length lead over Arute at the halfway mark of the feature, with Hinze, Provost, Josh Wood, Burnham, and Besstte lined up in a train of cars behind him.  Arute was pulling away from Provost and closing in on Wood for the lead while the Burnham was making a bid for fifth place on lap-13. 

Arute closed the distance to Don Wood and he made his move for the lead on lap-15 with a pass in turn 3.  There was still a train of cars behind Arute and Don Wood made up of Provost, Hinze, Burnham, Bessette, Josh Wood, Andrew Hayes, and Albert Saunders.  Burnham took fourth on lap-17 and Bessette followed him into fifth as Hinze was sliding backwards in the outside groove. 

Arute led the field to the checkered flag to pick up his first win of the season and take over the Limited Late Model points lead.  Don Wood finished second, with Provost, Burnham, and Bessette making up the top-5.

In the 20-lap DARE Stock Xtra Mart Xtra D feature event, James Carroll got a good run at the green flag and pulled in front of polesitter Fran Siana to take the lead.  But Carroll didn’t make it through turn 2 as he spun, but Carroll did a 360 spin and kept going and the race stayed green with Brandon Michael taking the race lead ahead of last week’s winner Jeremy Lavoie, Cliff Saunders, Dave Secore, and Johnny Walker.  The caution came out with two laps complete for a spin by Brandon Hughes.

Back under green, Michael took the lead with Lavoie looking to his outside.  Secore was third, Saudners lined up behind him and Siand and Kelsey Rottino were side by side for fourth place.  Ryan Fearn spun through the frontstretch grass to bring the caution back out with 3 laps complete.

The race went back to green with Michael and Lavoie resuming their duel for the lead with Secore, Siana, and Walker lined up behind him.  The caution came back out with 6 laps complete for a spin by Bryan Iwaniuk, who spun in the middle of turns 3+4.

Michael took the lead back under green, but Lavoie got around Michael to take the lead on lap-8.  Secore was still third, with Siana and Frank L’Etoile, Jr. behind him.  Siana and L’Etoile spun in turn 2 to bring the caution out with 9 laps complete.

Lavoie powered into the lead back under green with Michael, Walker, and Secore lined up behind him.  Michael spun in turn 4 after contact with Secore and he collected the car of Hughes to bring the caution back out with 10 laps complete.

The race went back green with Walker getting a good run to the outside of Lavoie to take the lead, but Lavoie came back strong to the inside of Walker in turns 3+4 to keep the lead at the line.  Kris Fluckiger was third, with Andy Marchese and Rottino lined up behind him.

The order shifted on lap-14 with Fluckiger moving into second and Marchese taking third, dropping Walker back to fourth place, just in front of Rottino and David Comeau.  Lavoie was headed to his second consecutive victory, but he caution came out with 19 laps complete for a spin by Marchese in turn 4 to set up a green white checkered finish.

Lavoie took the lead with Walker and Fluckiger side by side for second.  Walker took the spot but no one could catch Lavoie as he scored his second consecutive win.  Walker finished second, with Fluckiger, Rottino, and Comeau rounding out the top-5.

For more information contact the Stafford Motor Speedway track office at (860) 684-2783, or visit them on the web at www.staffordspeedway.com.