Tag Archives: Claremont Speedway

Granite State Pro Stock Series Set For Bond Auto 100 at Claremont


For the second time in 2016, the Granite State Pro Stock Series (GSPSS) is headed for Claremont Speedway.

This Friday, the GSPSS kicks-off the month of August at the 1/3 mile Claremont oval with the running of the Bond Auto 100 under the lights in New Hampshire.

Back in June, fans were left on the edge of their seats when Jeremy Davis, DJ Shaw and Derek Griffith battled hard in the final laps of the 100-lap feature, making the race itself worth the price of admission. In the end, Davis drove by Griffith on the final lap and rolled into victory lane behind the wheel of his No. 09.

This time, Belchertown, Massachusetts native Barry Gray, who leads the series point standings, is hoping to have better luck compared to June and challenge those up front. Gray struggled with the setup under the hood of his No. 29 and finished sixth at the first visit. He hopes this time will result in a better finish.

“The last time we were there we were absolutely terrible,” Gray said. “Since then, I sent the car out and had it worked on and setup by Jeremy Davis. We had a few tests and at Riverhead practice we were the fastest car in the third round. I have a car that I have some confidence in and I know I can drive. I’m very excited to be going back to Claremont.”

Coming into the event, Gray leads the series points standings by 14 points over Cory Casagrande. Mike Parks sits third 16 points back, with Mike Mitchell fourth, just 18 points from the top. The tough competition so far has closed the championship battle up and it will be exciting going down the stretch of the season.

Friday, the pit area opens for team to roll in and get prepared at 3:30 p.m., with practice starting promptly at 4:30 p.m. Heat racing, including the GSPSS 12 lap heat events, will begin at 7 p.m.

Admission to the paddock area is $35 for all ages and for fans to enter the track and sit in the grandstands, the cost is $20 for adults. Those ages 13-16 are $5 and any children under 12 are free.

For more information on the GSPSS, visit www.gspss.net or email series president Mike Parks at mparks@gspss.net.

QUICK FACTS: Bond Auto 100 at Claremont Speedway

Track Facts:

1   Claremont Speedway is located in Claremont, New Hampshire

2   Runs weekly racing card on Friday nights


Race Facts:

1   100 lap feature event

2   12 lap qualifying heats

3   Blind draw for heat starting positions

4   $2,000 to win feature race


Event Schedule:

1   Pit area opens at 3:00 p.m.

2   Practice begins at 4:30 p.m.

3   Rotating practice rounds including regular track divisions

4 Heat racing begins at 7 p.m.

Chip Cormie Photo

Todd Szegedy Wins the VMRS Feature at Claremont NH Speedway

Szegedy Drives to Claremont Win

With Woody Pitkat committed to his regular Stafford Speedway ride, Todd Szegedy of Ridgefield, Ct got the call to drive the Dan Stebbins owned  Allstates Paving sponsored #52 for the VMRS Claremont 100.
For some reason the Claremont Speedway tends to lead to multiple
caution flags for the Modifieds and Friday 7/8/2016 was no different.   With an unprecedented 11 yellows waving, 5 of them coming on lap 62 alone, it was like years ago when Punky Caron and Kirby Monteith were battling for victory.

Polesitter David Schneider of Northport, NY and Todd Patnode of
Richmond,NH brought the field to green with Schneider leading lap one until a spin by Josh King of Vernon,Vt relined the pack for the first of many restarts.

Patnode is starting to gel nicely with his new car and team and he
took command of the race at the drop of green with Todd Szegedy of
Ridgefield,Ct wasting no time charging into second place. The two ran nose to tail as an always hard charging Russ Hersey of Swanzey,NH threaded his way through the pack to take over third place from Schneider on lap 13. Two laps later Szegedy and Hersey worked by race leader Patnode on the inside. Szegedy would lead the remainder of the 100 lap race but would be constanly challenged for the spot.

In victory lane Szegedy said, “Once I was comfortable in the car and felt what the car needed, it was great all day- very well balanced car and a lot of bite in the car, I was amazed,” He added “I was able to
control the race, I felt we started a little to snug in the beginning
and lost a little at the end. My exit was good and if I could protect the bottom I knew it was going to be hard for those guys to
get by me.   I knew McKennedy was strong and he did everything he could to get those restarts. He was my toughest competitor tonight, but you know, I’ve loss races like that before so I know what its like, it really sucks”
About the race he said, “I went nice and easy at the beginning and
got away when I needed to, I pushed the envelope when I needed to and I rode when I needed to. That helped me save the car for the end but there were a couple of guys that pressured me. But being the leader is a great position to be in and as long as I didnt make a mistake I felt comfortable we could win this.”

Pole sitter Dave Schneider never ran outside the top 5 all event
long running a conservative pace until with 20 laps to go he raced by
a fading Patnode who lost 3 positions in 2 laps.   Schneider now set his sights on Szegedy who had a sizable lead. Schneider’s #19 drove to Szegedy’s back bumper but ran out of laps to over take the leader. His second place finish made the long haul back to Long Island a little easier.

“First I got to thank all my guys, Ray, my dad. Everyone did a
great job, they have done a great job all year. About tonight it was
just hang on and save the tires. My spotter kept telling me save those tires, save those tires, you gotta be there at the end not lap 60. I was trying to be smooth and patient and not over drive the car but I
did the last couple of laps when I got to Todd’s (Szegedy) bumper. I
could get to him real quick but I dont know if I could have gotten
around him, maybe if we had more laps.”

Jon McKennedy has been outstanding all season long and has quickly become a fan favorite where ever he runs and this race was no different. Starting deep in the pack because of his victory last week at the Monadnock Speedway, he methodically worked traffic taking advantage of caution flags in the process. By the halfway mark McKennedy drove to second and looked to be the smoothest car in the field.

Then the complextion of the race changed on lap 62 when Dana Smith of Sunapee, NH did a single car spin off turn 4. The restart now had Szegedy and McKennedy alined wheel to wheel. When the green flew the two ran side by side neither gaining advantage but Scott MacMichael of Newbury,NH and Mike Willis Jr. of Grantham,NH locked bumpers on the back streach to bring out the second yellow of lap 62. A five minute red flag period was needed to clean up the crash site.
Again Szegedy and McKennedy started door to door but as McKennedy  put on a serious charge for the lead rookie Dylan Rock of Enfield,NH spun off turn 4 bring out the third caution of lap 62. The fourth and fifth restarts were aborted when McKennedy was charged with jumping the starts and was put to the rear of the field.
According to the race fans in attendance, it wasn’t a popular
decision. Now Patnode lined up beside Szegedy and Szegedy had no
trouble roaring off with the lead while McKennedy was again on a
mission, picking off competitors lap after lap moving into forth place
by lap 75, with still plenty of time, but on lap 78 in an effort to
pass Chris Pasteryak of Jewitt City,Ct the two made contact in turn 2  and Pasteryak spun out of contention. Again McKennedy was deemed too aggressive and put to the rear of the lead cars which lined him up 8th.  It only took him 12 laps to come back to third. In the last 10 laps he was only able to gain on Szegedy and Schneider but not able to make a bid to over take the two.

McKennedy was reluctant to interview but did comment, “I had a
really good car, I don’t know, it was kind of a sh*tty call. What are
you going to do with two calls against me.” With the fans cheering he
said, “Yea, I think you guys feel the same way I feel. What are you
going to do? All those restarts were wheel to wheel, within inches.
They say I jumped the start, I don’t know I’d like to see the tapes, as
far as I’m concerned we were the car to beat. I’d like to thank all
the fans for coming out and my crew.”

Todd Patnode ran another impressive race finishing 4th with Mike
Willis Jr.coming back from his lap 62 crash to finish 5th.


Track-Claremont Speedway, Claremont,N.H.-1/3 mile
Race- VMRS Claremont 100
Heat Winners-#19-David Schneider–#24-Todd Patnode
Lap Leaders-lap 1-#19, David Schneider—laps 2-15, #24, Todd
Patnode—laps 16-100, #52, Todd Szegedy
Cautions-11- laps-1, 17×2,  52, 53,  62×5,  78

1-#52-Todd Szegedy
2-#19-David Schneider
3-#29-Jon McKennedy
4-#24-Todd Patnode
5-#38-Mike Willis Jr,
6-#04-Branden Dion
7-#14-Dana Smith
8-#15ct-Chris Pasteryak
9-#50-Carl Medieros Jr.
10-#93-George Sherman
11-#17-Dylan Rock
12-#7NH-Scott MacMichael
13-#16-Colbey Fournier
15-#88-Russ Hersey
16-#6-Sammy Rameau
17-#33-Rob Richardi Jr.
18-#21-Josh King
19-#117-Donnie Lashua

Next Race-Lee USA Speedway, July 22
by Jim Snape
photos by Crystal Snape

VMRS Heads to Claremont Speedway

Six days removed from an exciting finish at Monadnock Speedway in New Hampshire, and being ranked the number one Top-10 short track racing story for the holiday weekend by racing website, Speed-51 powered by JEGS, the Valenti Modified Racing Series returns to it’s roots Friday night, July 8, with a stop at Claremont Speedway, Claremont, NH.

The series will compete in a 100-lap green flag race. The Claremont race marks the halfway point of the 2016 VMRS season.

The wild finish saw Jon McKennedy, of E.Chelmsford, MA, slip by Swanzey, NH’s, Russ Hersey in turn three of the final lap, to score his third win of the year.

The same two that electrified the large holiday crowd last Saturday is entered in the Claremont show. Hersey has been competing at Claremont weekly shows and has many years experience at the tricky Granite State oval.

All-time series winner Kirk Alexander will compete driving the famed “Super Beast” # 43 that carried him to 31-series wins and four championships.

Two-time champion Chris Pasteryak, of Jewett City, CT, entering the event.

Todd Patnode, of Swanzey, fresh off a strong podium finish at Monadnock, and another driver with Claremont experience will compete.

Scott McMichaels of Newbury, NH, made an impressive showing last weekend and is a Claremont regular. He will compete with New Hampshire modified racers Mike Willis Jr, of Grantham, Matt Mead, of Richmond, Donnie Lashua, of Canaan, and Dana Smith of Sunapee.

Massachusetts drivers Colbey Fournier, of Berkley, Branden Dion, of Taunton, and Carl Medeiros, Jr, of Westport, are expected.

Qualifying races start at 7:15 PM.