Seekonk, MA — Anthony Nocella passed early race leader Dan Meservey Jr. after a lap-38 caution flag, and went on to dominate the Valenti Modified Racing Series sanctioned 100-lap race at Seekonk Speedway, Saturday night, June 5.
The win was the third (VMRS) victory for the Woburn Massachusetts driver whose last win was August 15,2015. Nocella becomes the fourth different driver to win in four races this season.
By virtue of winning the first heat race, Meservey started on the pole and looked impressive early on until Nocella took command. The #92 Nocella Paving Chevrolet became the target with the series top guns giving chase.
Chris Pasteryak chased the race leaders until a lap 73 flat tire knocked him from contention. Then Richard Savary, Woody Pitkat, Chase Dowling and Dave Schneider gave chase.
In the late stages, Jon McKennedy hunted down the race leader after being involved in contact with another car on lap-61. McKennedy pitted, went to the rear of the field, and then electrified the crowd as he attempted to get back to the front. By lap-70 he was 11th, lap-80 fourth, and on lap-93 was challenging Savary leading to a side-by-side duel until McKennedy slipped by.
With a win in his heat race and starting the race inside second row, the night belonged to Nocella in convincing style.
“My guys gave me a great car. Normally I don’t like to start up front. Want to save the tires as best you can,” said Nocella.
Nocella spoke about being the driver in front and dealing with (8) caution flags bringing the field closer to the leader. “ You don’t want to slip a shift. we’ve had that happen before and do not want to spin the tires. Keep the car straight. Each restart I was able to keep the lead and keep it at a couple of car length advantage,” said Nocella “
My guys kept telling me who was coming up through and that Jon (McKennedy) had pitted. I knew he would be coming hard. Make him work for it if he was going to get to us.”
Nocella did not plan to enter the Seekonk race because of a commitment to a dirt midget series in the Midwest. “ A six night series, we flipped, and ended up coming home. I asked my guys if they wanted to go to Seekonk and we ended up coming here and it worked out good for us.”
McKennedy, Savary, Pitkat, and Schneider, rounded the top five with Dowling, Todd Patnode, Kyle, James, Russ Hersey, and Todd Annarummo, finishing sixth through tenth.
Heat race winners were Meservey, Carl Medeiros Jr, and Nocella. No consolation race. All 26 cars started the event.
Eight caution flags slowed the race that was completed just less than 55 minutes.
19-cars finished on the lead lap
June 4, 2016
Caution Flags (8) Laps – 38, 41,45, 49,60,61,73,87
Time of Race: 54.52.618
Best Lap Time: Nocella 12.279
Margin of Victory: 1.360
Lap Leaders: Meservey (1-38) Nocella (39-100)