Category Archives: VMRS- Valenti Modified Racing Series

Sammy Rameau – Anthony Nocella Share Lee Victory Lane

Lee, NH. — 16-year old Sammy Rameau started outside on the front row, took the lead from pole sitter Brian Robie on lap-3, and went to victory lane for the first time Friday night, July 13, in Valenti Modified Racing Series action at Lee USA Speedway, Lee, NH.  The race was the first of two 50-lap ‘Cone’ races. Series point leader Anthony Nocella, the 2017 series champion, nabbed the second feature.

Rameau, of Westminster, MA; drove a flawless race in putting the Race Choice sponsored 6MA car in victory lane. The family operation headed up by father Randy, began their involvement in modified racing at Claremont Speedway.

Early leader Robie, of Sunapee, NH; who had never been to the Lee track until Friday, finished a solid second after a fourth place finish at Monadnock (NH) Speedway a week ago, Todd Patnode, of Swanzey, NH, finish third, Tony Ricci, of Westbrook, ME, made a late race charge to finish fourth, with Andy Shaw, of Conway, NH; rounding out the top five.

Russ Hersey, CJ Bolton, rookie Jacob Perry, Mike Willis Jr, and Woody Pitkat finished sixth through tenth.

The Lee facility has provided many firsts over the years. Twin 50-lap VMRS series races were started at Lee, the well-received ‘Cone’ race debuted Friday, and first time tour/type series drivers have found victory lane at the 3/8th mile oval.

Rameau from Westminster, MA; becomes the fourth driver in two seasons to win their first Valenti series race at the Lee track.  In 2017, Mike Douglas Jr, Dan Meservey Jr, and Troy Talman, garnered their first career tour-type wins at Lee.

The caution flag waved on laps 15 and again on lap-34. The first race was completed in 24 minutes 30 seconds.

All but one car, Anthony Nocella, involved in an early crash that forced him out of the event, finished on the lead lap (21 cars)

Race Summary   Race 1

Lee USA Speedway

Lee, NH.

July 13, 2018

Race # 7

Entrants: 22

Lap Leaders:  Robie  (1-2) Rameau (3-50)

Cautions Flags: Laps 15, 34

Margin of Victory: 2.099

Best Lap Time: 15.09    Rameau

Unofficial Order Of Finish:  (1) Rameau) (2) Robie (3) Patnode (4) Ricci (5) Shaw (6) Hersey (7) Bolton (8) Perry (9) Willis Jr (10) Pitkat (11) Sontag (12) Lashua (13) Robie (14) Richardi (15) Cantara (16) Smith (17) Rock (18) Doucette (19) Meservey Jr, (20) Sherman (21) Seidell (22) Nocella

In the nightcap, Nocella bounced back after starting 21st and paved his way to his second win of the season. The victory was the Woburn, MA, driver’s 13th win moving him to fifth on the series all-time win list.

Nocella, driving the Nocella Paving/Air Gas Chevrolet took the lead on lap-32 when he passed the events only other leader, Meservey Jr.

Patnode finished a strong second, followed by Meservey, Hersey, and Willis Jr, in the top five. Sixth through tenth were Rameau, Robie, Perry, Pitkat, and Ricci.

The second race was completed in 23 minutes.

Race Summary   Race 2

Lee USA Speedway

Lee, NH.

July 13, 2018

Race # 7

Entrants: 22

Lap Leaders:  Meservey (1-31) Nocella (32-50)

Cautions Flags: Laps 1, 5, and 23

Margin of Victory: 0.349

Best Lap Time: 14.892    Pitkat


Next event:

August 4, 2018

Beech Ridge Motor Speedway

Scarborough, Maine

Unofficial Order Of Finish:   (1) Nocella (2) Patnode (3) Meservey Jr (4) Hersey

(5) Willis Jr (6) Rameau (7) Robie (8) Perry (9) Pitkat (10) Ricci (11) Robbie (12) Smith (13) Shaw (14) Rock (15) Bolton (16) Seidell (17) Richardi (18) Sontag (19) Doucette (20) Sherman (21) Cantara (22) Lashua

Patnode Scores ‘Firecracker 100’ Win At Monadnock

Winchester, NH. — Veteran Monadnock Speedway driver Todd Patnode, of Swanzey, NH, made home track experience pay off Saturday night July 7, taking the lead on lap-64 to win the annual ‘Firecracker 100’ race sanctioned by the Valenti Modified Racing Series. It was the first win of the season for the popular Granite State driver and his third career series win. Patnode’s last VMRS win was August 21, 2016.

Patnode joins Jim Boniface, Peter Daniels, Vinnie Annarummo, and David Pinkham, all with three series wins.

In front of a large crowd on hand for the tracks annual Independence Day fireworks presentation and it’s tradition of the Valenti Modified Racing Series being part of it, Patnode started 21st in a 25-car field and patiently ran near the back of the lineup with the likes of Les Hinckley, of Windsor Locks, CT, Mike Willis Jr, of Grantham, NH, Ron Silk of Norfolk, CT, and eventual second place finisher and series point leader Anthony Nocella, of Woburn, MA, who rolled off in the 25th and final starting position.

Pole sitter Russ Hersey, of Swanzey, took command of the early lead for the first 46-laps. Woody Pitkat, of Bellingham, MA, grabbed the lead on a lap-47 restart when Hersey grabbed it back for two circuits.  Hersey and Pitkat flipped the lead back and forth while Patnode was fast approaching. Patnode took command on lap-64 in the Gomarlo’s Supermarket / Gary’s Power Equipment sponsored car and was never headed.

Nocella, who overcame an afternoon full of mechanical woes, largely credited his race team for getting him to a second place finish.  Hersey finished a solid third, another strong run for the Warren Mordenti /Central Mass Tree / Twin State Truck Repair team.

Another bright spot in the race was the drive from the 24th starting position to a fourth place finish by Sunapee, NH’s Brian Robie. Robie runs a selected series schedule and the Monadnock(VMRS) finish was his best yet.

Pitkat rounded out the top five.

Donnie Lashua, Hinckley, Kirk Alexander, rookie Jacob Perry, and Sammy Rameau rounded out the top-10.

15 of the 25 cars that started the race were on the lead lap. The race was completed just shy of 55 minutes.  Eight caution flags were needed.

Hersey, Joel Monahan, and Matt Mead won qualifying heats. Mead ran a strong race, a solid second for most of the first half.

Next Event: Lee USA Speedway

July 13, 2018

Twin 50-lap Features

Post Time: 7 00 PM

Race Summary

Monadnock Speedway

Winchester, NH.

July 7, 2018

Race # 6

Entrants: 25

Distance: 100-laps

Lap Leaders:  Hersey (1-46), Pitkat (47) Hersey (48-50), Pitkat (51-56)

Hersey (57-63) Patnode  (64-100)

Cautions Flags: Laps 3, 8, 40, 41, 46, 78, 78, 79

Margin of Victory: 0.238

Best Lap Time: 12.01

Best Speed: 70.307   Russ Hersey

Unofficial Order of Finish: (1) Patnode, (2) Nocella, (3) Hersey, (4) Robie, (5) Pitkat, (6) Lashua, (7) Hinckley, (8) Alexander, (9) Perry, (10) Rameau, (11) Savary, (12) Gallup, (13) Willis Jr (14) Monahan, (15) Robbie, (16) Sontag, (17) Gonyaw, (18) Smith, (19) Sherman, (20) Mead, (21) Silk, (22) Richardi, (23) Rock, (24) Bolton, (25) Seidell


Pitkat Ready To Defend His VMRS VictoryTitle At NHMS Sunday

Canaan, NH. – Woody Pitkat, of Stafford Springs, CT, is ready for this weekend’s ‘New England Short Track Showdown’ when the Valenti Modified Racing Series competes in a 50-lap shootout at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, NH. The race will be contested this Sunday, June 24, with Saturday set aside for a day of practice. Also on the docket are the Granite State Pro Series, Street Stock Showdown, and North East Mini Stock Tour.

Pitkat, winner of the inaugural race last season, looks forward to the event for good reason.

“Obviously very exited to go back there. I feel I have figured that place out the last handful of years. It’s a place I love going to. It’s our Daytona for the Modifieds with the drafting and passing we do,” said the 2015 VMRS champion and 4-time series winner.”

I’m very exited to be going there with our new Troyer chassis that we changed to a couple of races in. I have some very good notes from up there (Loudon) when I drove for Buzz Chew- won a couple of races and really looking forward to the weekend with that Troyer car. I think we’ll be even better than last year.”

The 2017 race featured 17 lead changes and Pitkat leading the field 9-different times. Can Sunday’s race be as competitive?

“Absolutely now that you have some people that have had an opportunity to race there. Drivers that have had seat time. Now that Jonathan McKennedy is going to be there — the 25-car has been the car to beat all year, they’ll be in contention, Anthony Nocella and Richard (Savary) and the rookies and young drivers have done a phenomenal job this year already.”

Pitkat is quick to point out, in his opinion, the rules package is right where it needs to be for this event.

“ I think Jack (Bateman) has done a good job getting all the engine packages together to create a level playing field, the gear ratio is where everybody needs to be and that’s what creates a lot of passing and a good show.”

Last year Pitkat took it upon himself to help some of the newcomers that had never driven the so-called ‘Magic Mile’. If someone came knocking on the door asking Woody would you help me out?

“Absolutely, I was thinking about that today said the driver of the Mayhew Tools/ Stebbins Racing # 52.  Definitely- if anyone wants to ask questions or wants me to go out on the track with them and do some drafting – to see how it is- that is going to give them more confidence and give me as a driver more confidence knowing that I can race with these guys. I don’t want them to go up there and second-guess what they are doing. I have no problem with helping anyone.” Pitkat concluded.”

Reigning Champion Anthony Nocella, of Woburn, MA, has a 21-point lead over former series champion Rowan Pennink (159) with Pitkat (150) currently third in the standings. Mike Willis sits fourth (148) and Sammy Rameau fifth (130).

Pre-race ceremonies are scheduled for 12 noon with qualifying heat races beginning at 12:30 PM