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Stafford Motor Speedway

Stafford Motor Speedway News
Rocco wins 8th Annual Carquest SK 150 at Stafford
Jul 23, 2011 - updated Jul 23rd, 2011 9:41am
Web posted by Scott Running

Stafford Springs, CT --

For Immediate Release July 22, 2011

Stafford Speedway returned to racing with it's
biggest race of the season, the 8th Annual CARQUEST SK 150. Keith Rocco
took the checkered flag and the $3,500 winner's check in the CARQUEST SK 150
for his third consecutive and fifth overall victory of the 2011 season,
Dillon Moltz picked up his third win of the 2011 season in the 30-lap Late
Model feature, Tommy Barrett, Jr. scored his fourth win of 2011 in the
20-lap SK Light Modified feature, Carla Botticello picked up her first win
of 2011 in the 20-lap Limited Late Model feature, and Don Wood scored his
third win of 2011 in the 15-lap DARE Stock feature.
In the 8TH Annual CARQUEST SK 150 feature event, the action was wild at the
front as Tom Bolles made a three-wide move on the first lap to take the lead
ahead of Michael Gervais, Jr. and Dan Avery. Glen Reen was fourth with
polesitter Sean Foster falling back to fifth place. The order continued to
shuffle as both Ryan Preece and Woody Pitkat took to the outside groove to
move by everyone and take over first and second place on lap-7. Reen was
now third with Eric Berndt in fourth and Bolles had fallen back to fifth
The field began to stretch out a bit with Preece and Pitkat out front, while
Reen and Berndt were nose to tail several car lengths behind the lead duo.
Keith Rocco and Todd Owen were the next two cars in line and they were about
a half straightaway behind Reen and Berndt. Reen and Berndt closed the gap
to the lead cars of Pitkat and Preece and it was now a four-car train at the
front of the pack with 20 laps complete.
Pitkat pulled to the inside of Preece on lap-25 and on lap-26 he moved by
Preece to take over the lead. Pitkat’s moved opened the door for Reen to
follow Pitkat past Preece and two laps later Berndt would also move by
Preece to drop Preece from the lead back to fourth place. Rocco was still
in fifth place, but he was clicking off the fastest laps of any car in the
field and he was quickly closing in on the front four cars.
Rocco caught up to Preece and he moved past to take over fourth place on
lap-34. Reen was hounding Pitkat for the lead at the front, but he was not
able to make a pass. The caution came out for the first time on lap-38 for
a spin by Vinny Anglace on the backstretch. Heather DesRochers was sent to
the rear of the field for contact with Anglace.
DesRochers spun on the lap-42 restart to bring the caution right back out.
Pitkat took the lead on the restart, but Reen moved by Pitkat for the race
lead on lap-48. Berndt was third with Rocco in fourth and Owen in fifth.
The caution came back out on lap-50 for a spin by Anglace in turn 4.
The race restarted on lap-54, but the caution came right back out as
DesRochers’ car came to a stop in turn 4. Reen and Pitkat stayed side by
side on the lap-58 restart for the lead with Reen able to get clear of
Pitkat on lap-59. Rocco moved the inside of Pitkat for second and he made
the pass on lap-61. Berndt was fourth with Owen and Gervais behind him.
Rocco moved by Reen to take over the lead for the first time on lap-62.
Ryan Preece spun in turn 2 at the halfway point of the race to bring the
caution back out. The order for the restart would be Rocco and Reen on the
front row, Pitkat and Berndt in the second row, and Frank Ruocco and Gervais
in the third row.
Rocco took the lead on the lap-80 restart, but Pitkat went by Rocco for the
lead on lap-82. Pitkat stayed out front until lap-86 when Rocco moved back
by Pitkat to retake the lead. Reen spun in turn 2 on lap-87, but he was
able to keep moving and the race stayed under green flag conditions. Ruocco
was now in third behind Rocco and Pitkat, with Berndt and Gervais making up
the top-5. Preece, who had spun not that long ago, was back up to sixth
place behind Gervais. Preece made a move to the outside of Gervais on
lap-94 to move into fifth place as Rocco continued to hold the race lead.
Anglace spun in turn 4 on lap-97 to bring the caution back out.
The race restarted on lap-101 with Anglace spinning in turn 1 to bring the
yellow back out. Rocco took the lead on the lap-106 restart with Pitkat,
Ruocco, Preece, and Berndt quickly falling into single file behind him.
Ruocco bobbled on lap-118, which allowed Preece to take over third and Rocco
and Pitkat stretched their advantage over the rest of the field.
Rocco pulled away from Pitkat over the final 32 laps to take a dominating
victory in the CARQUEST SK 150, his first career win in the 150-lap event.
Pitkat came home in second, with Preece, Berndt, and Ruocco rounding out the
In the 30-lap Late Model feature event, Jim Peterson came to pit road before
the start of the feature to change a right rear tire and he went several
laps down before pulling his car behind the wall. Tom Butler led the first
lap before Corey Hutchings moved to the front on lap-2. Hutchings’ move
opened the door for Mark St. Hilaire and Dillon Moltz to also move by
Butler, dropping him from the lead back to fourth place. Moltz made a move
to the inside of St. Hilaire for second on lap-5 while Tony Lafo was
rounding out the top-5. Just behind Lafo was Ryan Posocco, who went by J.J.
Hill for sixth place on lap-6.
Posocco continued his charge as he went by Lafo for fifth on lap-8.
Hutchings had a comfortable lead of several car lengths over Moltz, who had
St. Hilaire and Butler lined up right behind him. The caution came out with
9 laps complete as Woody Pitkat spun in turn 3 after contact with Tony Lafo.
Lafo was sent to the rear of the field by NASCAR officials for the contact
with Pitkat.
On the restart, Butler went around in turn 2 and hit the wall to bring the
caution back out. Ryan Posocco was sent to the rear of the field for
contact with Butler. Hutchings took the lead back under green with Moltz
and Tom Fearn behind him. Mark St. Hilaire was fourth, but he lost that
position to Rocco on lap-12. But just as soon as Rocco moved by St.
Hilaire, he dropped off the pace with an apparent mechanical problem and he
coasted his way back to the pit road entrance, where the car came to a stop
and brought the caution back out with 14 laps complete.
On the restart, Hutchings didn’t come up to speed as quick as Moltz as Moltz
powered into the lead. Hutchings briefly fell back to third before he
recovered and moved back into second ahead of Pitkat, John Kasper, and Adam
Gray. St. Hilaire made contact with the frontstretch wall and was able to
pull behind the wall, but the caution did come out for Scott Cook and Rocco,
who spun in turn 2.
Moltz took the lead back under green with Pitkat moving into second.
Hutchings was third, with Posocco and Kasper making up the top-5. The top-5
ran in line until the caution came out with 28 laps complete as John Pysher
spun while Moltz was trying to put him a lap down, which set up a green
white checkered finish.
Moltz took the lead with Posocco sliding into second. Hutchings moved into
third while Pitkat fell back to fourth place. Posocco made one final
attempt on Moltz in the final lap, but Moltz was too strong to be overtaken
and he picked up his third win of the 2011 season. Rounding out the top-5
behind Moltz and Posocco was Hutchings, Pitkat, and Kasper.
In the 20-lap SK Light Modified feature event, Tony Santangelo took the lead
and he led the first four laps of the race before giving way to Tony
Membrino, Jr. on lap-5. Membrino led the field until the caution came out
with 11 laps complete for a spin by Tommy Membrino, Jr. in turn 4.
Back under green, Kyle Spencer powered into the lead with Joey Cipriano
moving into second as Membrino fell from the lead back to third. Cipriano
made a pass for the lead, but just as he made the pass, the caution came out
for a spin by Matt Galko in turn 4, which put Spencer back out front for the
Spencer took the lead on the restart, but Cipriano moved to the lead one lap
after the restart, dropping Spencer back to second. Zach Aszklar was now up
to third, with Tommy Barrett, Jr. and Dylan Liseo behind him. Membrino was
now back to sixth after leading earlier in the feature. Aszklar spun in
turn 2 to bring the caution out with 18 laps complete and set up a green
white checkered finish.
Cipriano took the lead on the restart with Barrett moving by Spencer to take
over second. Liseo was foruth and Tony Membrino was fifth. Barrett made a
power move to the inside of Cipriano in turns 3+4 on the final lap and he
came out of turn 4 with the lead and he took the checkered flag ahead of
Cipriano by a car length. Rounding out the top-5 behind Barrett and
Cipriano was Spencer, Liseo, and Tony Membrino, Jr.
In the 20-lap Limited Late Model feature event, Carla Botticello took the
lead from the pole and led the first lap before the caution came out for a
spin on the backstretch that involved Jesse Hinze, D.J. Burnham, and Dan
Botticello charged back into the lead on the restart with Chris Cook in
second. Norm Sears was running third, with George Nocera, Jr. and Kevin
Gambacorta behind him. The top-5 ran in line until lap-7 when Nocera,
Gambacorta, and Shawn Thibeault all moved by Sears as Botticello continued
to hold the lead ahead of Cook.
Gambacorta was all over the back of Nocera, but he was unable to make a pass
until lap-16. Botticello was now comfortably out in front with Gambacorta
in second. Nocera and Thibeault were side by side for third place when the
caution came out with 19 laps complete for a spin by Cory Casagrande in turn
4. The caution erased Botticello’s lead and set up a green white checkered
Botticello took the lead on the restart while Thibeault moved by Gambacorta
to take over second. Botticello led the field around to the checkered flag
to pick up her first feature victory of the 2011 season. Thibeault finished
second, with Gambacorta, Nocera, and Sears rounding out the top-5.
In the 15-lap DARE Stock feature event, the caution came out before the
field could complete the first lap as Kaitlyn Brice and Albert Saunders spun
on the backstretch. Also caught up in the action was Josh Wood, who was
finished for the race with a flat right front tire.
As the race resumed, James Carroll took the lead with David Arute right
behind him in second. Don Wood was in third, with Vince Gambacorta in
fourth and Cliff Saunders in fifth. Carroll held the lead until lap-4 when
Arute moved past him in turn 1 to take over the lead. Wood followed Arute
past Carroll to take over second before the caution came back out with 4
laps complete for a spin by David Macha in turn 1.
Arute and Wood were side by side for the lead back under green with Wood
leading lap-5 by a nose over Arute. Gambacorta continued to hold down
third, with Kyle Casagrande moving up to fourth. Cliff Saunders ran in
fifth as Arute got clear of Wood back to the front of the pack on lap-6.
Wood got loose in turn 1 and he fell from second place back to fifth as
Casagrande, Gambacorta, and Cliff Saunders all moved past.
Casagrande was all over Arute’s bumper for the lead, but Arute was able to
fend off Casagrande’s challenges. With 9 laps complete, Casagrande tried to
make a pass to the inside of Arute, but he spun in turn 2 to bring the
caution out.
Arute took the lead back under green with Cliff Saunders moving into second.
Don Wood was third with Gambacorta and Andrew Hayes dueling side by side for
fourth place. Arute held the lead until lap-12 when Cliff Saunders moved to
the front. But Saunders’ stay out front was short lived as Wood went by
both Arute and Saunders on lap-13 to move from third to the lead. Wood led
the field around to the checkered flag to take down his third win of the
2011 season. Arute finished second, with Cliff Saunders, Hayes, and
Gambacorta 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.

1) Keith Rocco, Meriden
2) Woody Pitkat, Stafford Springs
3) Ryan Preece, Berlin
4) Eric Berndt, Cromwell
5) Frank Ruocco, Cheshire
6) Todd Owen, Somers
7) Curt Brainard, Canton
8) Michael Gervais, Jr., Southbury
9) Sean Foster, Willington
10) Dan Avery, Somers
11) Tom Bolles, Ellington
12) Joe Gada, Salem
13) Nichole Morgillo, Wallingford
14) Jeff Baral, Enfield
15) Glen Reen, Wilbraham, Ma
16) Michael King, Agawam, Ma
17) Richie Pallai, Jr., Yorktown Heights, Ny
18) Kurt Lenahan, Roxbury
19) Michael Bennett, Stafford Springs
20) Mark Bakaj, Lebanon
21) Donny Travaglin, Winsted
22) Vinny Anglace, Ansonia
23) Heather DesRochers, Granby, Ma

1) Dillon Moltz, Waterford
2) Ryan Posocco, Stafford Springs
3) Corey Hutchings, Salem
4) Woody Pitkat, Stafford Springs
5) Adam Gray, Belchertown, Ma
6) John Kasper, Wilbraham, Ma
7) Walt Wosko, Jr., West Suffield
8) Tony Lafo, Higganum
9) Ed Ricard, Stafford Springs
10) Scott Cook, Uncasville
11) John Pysher, Brimfield, Ma
12) Keith Rocco, Meriden
13) Patrick Townsend, Springifeld, Ma
14) Tom Fearn, East Longmeadow, Ma
15) J.J. Hill, Stafford Springs
16) Jim Peterson, Monson, Ma
17) Mark St. Hilaire, Berlin
18) Tom Butler, Stafford Springs

1) Tommy Barrett, Jr., Millis, Ma
2) Joey Cipriano, III, Waterbury
3) Kyle Spencer, Montgomery, Ma
4) Dylan Liseo, East Hartford
5) Tony Membrino, Jr., Plantsville
6) Chris Kopec, Palmer, Ma
7) Bob Charland, Stafford
8) Tony Santangelo, Middlefield
9) Cody Gneiting, Broad Brook
10) Jesse Ruocco, Cheshire
11) Frank Cardile, Bolton
12) Harry Wheeler, Stafford Springs
13) Zach Aszklar, Wallingford
14) Paul Tommasino, Meriden
15) Rick Williams, Haddam
16) Tommy Membrino, Jr., Prospect
17) Jay Goff, Stafford Springs
18) Steve Greer, Harwinton
19) Matt Galko, Meriden

1) Carla Botticello, Manchester
2) Shawn Thibeault, Plainville
3) Kevin Gambacorta, Ellington
4) George Nocera, Jr., Plainville
5) Norm Sears, Andover
6) Jesse Hinze, Farmington
7) Brian Clement, Wethersfield
8) Cory Casagrande, Stafford Springs
9) Joe Nogiec, Bristol
10) D.J. Burnham, East Hartford
11) Chris Cook, Pepperell, Ma
12) Dan Flannery, Ellington
13) Duane Provost, Indian Orchard, Ma

1) Don Wood, Palmer, Ma
2) David Arute, Tolland
3) Cliff Saunders, Stafford
4) Andrew Hayes, Charlton, Ma
5) Vince Gambacorta, Ellington
6) Kris Fluckiger, Enfield
7) Monte Gibbs, Killingworth
8) Austin Bessette, Stafford Springs
9) James Carroll, West Hartford
10) Andy Marchese, Tolland
11) Brandon Michael, Cranville, Ma
12) Kelsey Rottino, Willimantic
13) Gary Spinnato, Sr., Wallingford
14) Doug Phelps, Jr., New Salem, Ma
15) David Macha, Columbia
16) Kyle Casagrande, Stafford Springs
17) Joe Mcallister, New Britian
18) Kaitlyn Brice, Manchester
19) Albert Saunders, Stafford
20) Josh Wood, Palmer, Ma

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