Winchester, NH. – Reigning Valenti Modified Racing Series Champion Anthony Nocella, of Woburn, MA, took advantage of a lap-94 restart, to go on and win Saturday night’s ‘Spring Dash 100’ at Monadnock Speedway, Winchester, NH.
It was the 24-year old Nocella’s first career win at Monadnock, his first of the new season, and his 12th career win victory putting him in a three – way tie for fourth with Rowan Pennink, and Chris Pasteryak, on the series all-time win list.
Nocella started 9th in a 23-car field and hung back while a hotly contested race developed at the front of the field. Grantham, NH’s Mike Willis Jr, thanks to winning his heat race, started first on the field, and set a quick pace right away leading the first 18-laps of the main event in his Spirit of Alaska sponsored modified.
On lap 19, local favorite Todd Patnode, of Swanzey, NH, put the Gommardo’s Supermarket sponsored car into the lead until Woody Pitkat, of Sturbridge, MA, in the Mayhew Tools modified, took charge on lap 27. Pitkat enjoyed the top position until Patnode grabbed it back on the 39th circuit.
Nocella made good use of a series of caution flags through the race to work his way to the front.
“I’ve had some decent runs here and some bad runs,” said Nocella in victory lane. “You gotta have tire left at the end to go anywhere. have had that problem before. The car wasn’t perfect at the beginning. I couldn’t get it to roll the center. At the end I thought I had something for him (Patnode). On the lap-94 restart “ I thought I’m either going to spin out or win the thing.”
Patnode settled for a strong second, Richard Savary, Canton, MA, third, Westbrook, ME’s Tony Ricci, fourth, and Rookie of the Year candidate Cameron Sontag, of Sterling, MA, rounded out the top five.
Willis finished sixth, Matt Mead seventh, Jacob Perry, eighth, Dana Smith ninth, and Jeffrey Gallup tenth.
12 drivers finished on the lead lap. The race was slowed 10 times by caution flags for spinouts or contact made with another car.
Heat winners were (1) Willis Jr, (2) Patnode, (3) Pitkat
Late Sunday afternoon, series officials announced Pitkat was assessed a 1-lap penalty per the VMRS rulebook for unauthorized tire change during the race.
May 5, 2018
New London-Waterford Speedbowl
Race # 2
April 21, 2018
Cautions Flags: (9) Laps – 4,22,23,52,60,80,95,96
Margin of Victory: 0.618
Average Speed: 28.674
Best Lap Time: 12.822
Best Speed: 70.192- – Richard Savary
Unofficial Order of Finish: (1) Nocella, (2) Patnode, (3) Savary, (4) Ricci, (5) Sontag, (6) Willis Jr, (7) Mead, (8) Perry, (9) Smith, (10) Gallup,(11) Rameau, (12), Rock, (13), Robbie, (14) Doucette, (15) Pitkat, (16), Trayner(17) Rob Richardi Jr, (18), Monahan, (19) Lashua, (20), Hersey, (21) Pennink, (22) Bolton, (23) Seidell