Griffith, Owen, Barnett Among Winners in Final Prelude to Thompson 300
Daniel Holben photo
Thompson, CT — North Dartmouth, MA’s Derek Gluchacki scored one for the locals by winning the American-Canadian Tour (ACT) Sunoco World Series 75 presented by Twisted Tea at Connecticut’s Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park on Saturday, October 9. The 19-year-old got the lead early and was never seriously challenged en route to his first career ACT victory as part of Twisted Tea Saturday for the 59th Sunoco World Series of Speedway Racing.
It was a fitting place for Gluchacki to break through. The ACT sophomore began his racing career at the Little T Speedway quarter midget track right next to the high-banked oval. His dominating victory came as part of an eight-division card in the final prelude to the $20,000-to-win Thompson 300 on Sunday, October 10.
Raymond, NH’s Alby Ovitt started on the pole and led the first three laps before Gluchacki took over. The new leader took advantage of some serious dicing between Ovitt, Patrick Emerling, Brian Tagg, and others to build up a big lead.
Turner, ME’s Ben Rowe and Center Conway, NH’s D.J. Shaw, the top two drivers in the ACT standings, eventually sliced their way through the pack to third and fourth. Shaw then got the break on a lap-24 restart for Jacob Burns’ turn-four spin, shooting past Ovitt and Rowe on the outside to second as Gluchacki darted away again.
Just when Shaw was starting to close the gap on Gluchacki, Burns looped it again to bring out another yellow on lap 40. Then as the field came to the green flag, Tom Carey III — the winner of the local Late Model feature the night before — got turned around from the fourth spot. John Donahue, Burns, and Walter Sutcliffe all got caught up in the carnage.
Once the track was cleaned up, it was more of the same for Gluchacki. He again used his short run strength to pull away, and this time, he was good on the long run, too. The only potential threat to Gluchacki’s dominance was a pack of five lapped cars that he caught with just over 10 laps to go. But the leader got through clean while Shaw was hung up behind double-wide battling, sealing the deal for Gluchacki to become ACT’s sixth first-time winner of 2021.
Shaw took second with Rowe in third. Rowe had previously won his heat race, which unofficially kept his point lead over Shaw at a single point with only one event left on the calendar. Williamstown, VT’s Jimmy Hebert, a former Thompson Speedway winner, was solid all night to take fourth. Woody Pitkat, Ovitt, Ryan Kuhn, Tagg, Mike Benevides, and Emerling rounded out the top-10.
Hudson, NH’s Derek Griffin pulled the season sweep at Thompson Speedway for the Pro All Stars Series (PASS) Super Late Models. Griffin started 12th for the 75-lap feature and steadily worked his way through the pack. He eventually caught Austin MacDonald just past the 20-lap mark and effortlessly swung past him for the lead.
Griffin wasn’t out of the woods yet, though. A series of cautions between laps 64 and 69 allowed MacDonald, Corey Casagrande, Eddie MacDonald, Ben Rowe, and others who had been battling throughout the field to take their shot. The field was shaken up even further on lap 67 when Johnny Clark and Dave Farrington tangled racing for the fourth spot, sending the other contenders scattering.
The closest call for Griffin when he wandered up the track in turn one on the ensuing restart. But he was able to recover and motor to a bookend victory after his Thompson Icebreaker triumph in April.
MacDonald came back to take second late in the race as Casagrande began to fade. Early leader Eddie MacDonald was third with Ben Rowe, Casagrande, Ryan Kuhn, Jake Matheson, Devin O’Connell, Josh King, and Clark completing the top-10.
Somers, CT’s Todd Owen snapped Keith Rocco’s Sunoco Modified winning streak by just 0.016 seconds in the second round of their Triple Crown Series. Owen started seventh for the 30-lap feature and spent the first half of the race riding in the middle of the top-10 as Rocco and Teddy Hodgdon duked it out at the front.
A lap-17 caution after R.J. Marcotte’s car went up in smoke let the field catch up to the lead duo. Owen had followed Mike Christopher Jr. past Troy Talman for fourth just before the yellow, and he quickly swept around Christopher and Hodgdon on the restart. The new Stafford Motor Speedway champion then dove inside Rocco in the third turn to lead lap 22 only for Rocco to return the favor a lap later.
Owen spent the next six laps plotting and scheming for his final move as Hodgdon, Christopher, and Jonathan Puelo joined the fight. Entering turn three for the last time, Owen went low and put his nose out front. Rocco got a run off the final corner, but Owen beat him to the stripe by the thinnest of margins.
Hodgdon took third hot on their heels pursued by Christopher and Puelo. Ronnie Williams, Talman, Danny Cates, Brett Meservey Jr., and Paul LaPlante completed the top-10. Rocco will have a comfortable lead in the season-long standings entering Sunday’s finale while Owen unofficially leads Rocco by a point for the Sunoco Modified Triple Crown Series.
Freeport, NY’s Gerard Giordano Jr. beat Todd Owen to the punch with a last-corner pass of his own to win the 35-lap EXIT Realty Pro Truck Challenge feature. Giordano laid low early in the main event as Old Saybrook, CT’s Andrew Morin showed the way. East Providence, RI’s Connor Souza then showed his muscle following the second caution, going to the inside of Morin with 16 laps to go.
The duo spent the next three laps side-by-side before Souza secured the point. Giordano grabbed the second position three laps later as Souza pulled away. But when Emma Monahan tried to take third from Morin, she lost the back end in turn one, going for a spin that also collected Jim Boyle and Randy Burr.
That set up a four-lap dash for cash. Souza held off Giordano on the initial restart after a brief tussle. But coming into turn three on the final lap, the two made contact, which allowed Giordano to get inside. They swapped paint all the way to the checkered flag with Giordano prevailing by about a foot. Morin took third with Nathan Smith, Devon Jencik, Dave Koenig, Kyle Gero, Lucas Leone, Lloyd Anderson, and Jim Boyle also getting top-10 finishes.
Moosup, CT’s “Leadfoot” Larry Barnett completed a comeback season by motoring to the victory and the championship in the Vandi Auto Supply Limited Sportsmen. Barnett inherited the second spot when Troy Waterman and Nick Hovey got together on lap four. On the restart, fellow title challenger tried to make a move on leader Scott Sundeen. Ryan Waterman, who entered the feature tied with Barnett for the point lead, was involved in the ensuing melee that along with Sundeen, Jeffrey Van Pelt, and Kristopher Kay.
That handed Barnett the lead, which was the best place to be as five more yellows flew over the next 13 laps — culminating with Fanning spinning through the infield on the lap 17 restart. Barnett held stead throughout it all, fending off Putnam, CT’s Zachary Robinson for the victory and his first track championship since 2010.
Troy Waterman recovered from this early incident to take third. Travis Jurcik, Brent Gleason, Van Pelt, Al Stone III, Jon Porter, Tyler Trott, and Fanning filled out the rest of the top-10.
Kingston, MA’s Randy Cabral got closer to the Northeastern Midget Association (NEMA) championship by winning the 25-lap Shane Hammond Memorial. Cabral snagged the lead from Ben Seitz on lap eight and quickly built up a comfortable margin.
John Zych Jr. passed Seitz for second shortly followed a restart for Jake Trainor’s mechanical failure, and Zych seemed to be closing on Cabral. But as Zych came out of turn four with seven laps to go, his engine gave up the ghost. That left Cabral clear to cruise for the victory. Seitz, Avery Stoehr, Todd Bertrand, and Joey Payne completed the top-five.
Oxford, MA’s Nick Anderson left the North East Mini Stock Tour field behind on the way to a convincing victory. Anderson and Desmond Skillings started the 20-lap feature in the third row and needed just one lap to become the front two. The only caution came on the following circuit when Raymond Herman Sr. lost a right front tire. Anderson blew Skillings away on the restart and was in another area code by the race’s end.
Skillings was able to beat off the charges of Mike Viens and Nick Maniatis for second. Emerson Cayer rounded out the top-five. Berlin, NH’s Cody LeBlanc clinched the North East Mini Stock Tour championship with a sixth-place finish.
Randy Cabral picked up his second win of the night by going flag-to-flag in the Harry Kourafas Memorial for the Pro 4 Modifieds. He left a trio of Meserveys in the dust, wiring the field for victory in the 22-lap feature. Brett Meservey, Doug Meservey Jr., and Brayden Meservey chased him across the finish line. Craig Phillips was the Pro 4 Limited winner followed by Kurt Lester and Douglas Vinor.
The 59th Sunoco World Series of Speedway Racing concludes Sunday, October 10 at 12:30pm with Thompson 300 for the Outlaw Open Modified Series. Justin Bonsignore, Doug Coby, Ron Silk, Mike Christopher Jr., Ronnie Wiliams, and Patrick Emerling are just some of the Tour-type Modified drivers who will chase a guaranteed minimum $20,000 top prize. The Sunday card also includes the final round of the Sunoco Modified Triple Crown Series plus the NEMA Lites, SK Light Modifieds, and Mini Stocks. Admission is $40 for adults, $10 for kids ages 6-12, and free for kids ages 5 and under.
For more information about the American-Canadian Tour, contact the ACT offices at (802) 244-6963, firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.acttour.com. You can also get updates on Facebook and Twitter at @ACTTour.
For technical information concerning all PASS divisions, and for media or marketing questions, please contact email@example.com or visit www.proallstarsseries.com. Don’t forget to “Like” the Pro All Stars Series on Facebook or follow on Twitter @PASSSLM14 to keep up with breaking news as it happens.
For general Thompson Speedway inquiries, call (860) 923-2280, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.thompsonspeedway.com. You can follow Thompson Speedway on Facebook and Instagram at @ThompsonSpeedway or on Twitter at @ThompsonSpdwy.
THOMPSON SPEEDWAY MOTORSPORTS PARK — Thompson, CT
TWISTED TEA WORLD SERIES SATURDAY
SUNOCO WORLD SERIES OF SPEEDWAY RACING DAY TWO
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 9, 2021
ACT LATE MODEL TOUR
Pos., Start Pos., Driver, Car #, Hometown, Laps
1. ( 4 ) Derek Gluchacki ( 03MA ) , North Dartmouth, MA , 75 Laps
2. ( 11 ) D.J. Shaw ( 04VT ) , Center Conway, NH , 75 Laps
3. ( 5 ) Ben Rowe ( 4ME ) , Turner, ME , 75 Laps
4. ( 12 ) Jimmy Hebert ( 58VT ) , Williamstown, VT , 75 Laps
5. ( 15 ) Woody Pitkat ( 07MA ) , Bellingham, MA , 75 Laps
6. ( 1 ) Alby Ovitt ( 35NH ) , Raymond, NH , 75 Laps
7. ( 13 ) Ryan Kuhn ( 72MA ) , E. Bridgewater, MA , 75 Laps
8. ( 3 ) Brian Tagg ( 9MA ) , Oxford, MA , 75 Laps
9. ( 8 ) Mike Benevides ( 50RI ) , Westerly, RI , 75 Laps
10. ( 2 ) Patrick Emerling ( 91CT ) , Orchard Park, NY , 75 Laps
11. ( 9 ) #Erick Sands ( 36NH ) , Derry, NH , 75 Laps
12. ( 10 ) Tom Carey III ( 5MA ) , New Salem, MA , 75 Laps
13. ( 21 ) Robby Gordon Douglas ( 27NC ) , Charlotte, NC , 74 Laps
14. ( 17 ) Stephen Donahue ( 2VT ) , Graniteville, VT , 74 Laps
15. ( 6 ) Mark Jenison ( 22RI ) , Warwick, RI , 74 Laps
16. ( 7 ) Jacob “Rowdy” Burns ( 30RI ) , East Greenwich, RI , 74 Laps
17. ( 20 ) Walter Sutcliffe ( 78CT ) , East Haven, CT , 74 Laps
18. ( 14 ) Glenn Boss ( 3CT ) , Thompson, CT , 74 Laps
19. ( 22 ) #Kevin Vaudrien ( 11NH ) , Brattleboro, VT , 74 Laps
20. ( 19 ) Matt Anderson ( 49NH ) , Franklin, NH , 74 Laps
21. ( 18 ) Jamie Aube ( 41VT ) , Bow, NH , 74 Laps
22. ( 23 ) #Tom Sheehan ( 65NH ) , Bow, NH , 71 Laps
23. ( 16 ) John Donahue ( 26VT ) , Graniteville, VT , 40 Laps
DNS #Dennis L. Dumas ( 15NH ) , Raymond, NH
Lap Leaders: Alby Ovitt, 1-3; Derek Gluchacki, 4-75. (1 lead change among 2 drivers)
Time of Race: 39 minutes, 44 seconds Margin of Victory: 4.188 seconds
Cautions: 3 (laps 24, 40, 40)
Heat Winners: Derek Gluchacki, Ben Rowe, Tom Carey III
PASS SUPER LATE MODELS
Pos., Driver, Car #, Hometown, Laps
1. Derek Griffith ( 12G ) Hudson, NH , 75 Laps
2. Austin MacDonald ( 13M ) Pictou, NS , 75 Laps
3. Eddie MacDonald ( 17MA ) Rowley, MA , 75 Laps
4. Ben Rowe ( 4 ) Turner, ME , 75 Laps
5. Cory Casagrande ( 7CT ) Stafford Springs, CT , 75 Laps
6. Ryan Kuhn ( 72 ) E. Bridgewater, MA , 75 Laps
7. Jake Matheson ( 52 ) Hillsboro, NH , 75 Laps
8. Devin O’Connell ( 43 ) Madison, CT , 75 Laps
9. Josh King ( 21 ) Vernon, VT , 75 Laps
10. Johnny Clark ( 54 ) Hallowell, ME , 75 Laps
11. Joe Kendall ( 4NH ) Winchendon, MA , 75 Laps
12. Brandon Barker ( 88 ) Windham, ME , 75 Laps
13. Dan Winter ( 81 ) Deerfield, NH , 75 Laps
14. Kate Re ( 10 ) Harrison, ME , 75 Laps
15. Brandon Turbush ( 17X ) Manorville, NY , 75 Laps
16. Dave Farrington Jr. ( 23 ) Jay, ME , 75 Laps
17. Michael Mitchell ( 40 ) Cumberland, RI , 67 Laps
18. Mike Scorzelli ( 18S ) Feura Bush, NY , 67 Laps
19. Rowland Robinson Jr. ( 20 ) Steuben, ME , 64 Laps
20. Derek Gluchacki ( 48 ) N. Dartmouth, MA , 63 Laps
21. Anthony Constantino ( 14ME ) Turner, ME , 34 Laps
22. D.J. Shaw ( 60 ) Ctr. Conway, NH , 10 Laps
23. Derek Ramstrom ( 52X ) Worcester, MA , 10 Laps
SUNOCO MODIFIED TRIPLE CROWN SERIES ROUND #2
Pos., Driver, Car #, Hometown
1. Todd Owen ( 81 ) Somers , CT
2. Keith Rocco ( 57 ) Berlin , CT
3. Teddy Hodgdon ( 55 ) Danbury , RI
4. Mike Christopher Jr. ( 82 ) Wolcott , CT
5. Jonathan Puleo ( 7 ) Branford , CT
6. Ronnie Williams ( 50 ) Tolland , CT
7. Troy Talman ( 3 ) Oxford , MA
8. Danny Cates ( 2 ) Chaplin , CT
9. Brett Meservey Jr. ( 67 ) Brewster , MA
10. Paul LaPlante ( 02 ) N. Scituate , RI
11. Joe Allegro Jr. ( 08 ) Vernon , RI
12. Michael Gervais ( 33X ) Wolcott , CT
13. John Lowinski-Loh ( 33 ) Thompson , CT
14. Andrew Molleur ( 35 ) Shelton , CT
15. Chase Cook ( 8 ) Norwich , CT
16. Adam Gada ( 27A ) Bozrah , CT
17. Cody Rose ( 62 ) Worcester , MA
18. R.J. Marcotte ( 25 ) Millville , MA
19. Tyler Barry ( 18 ) Griswold , CT
DNS Chris Viens ( 38 ) Somers , CT
DNS Christian Turrisi ( 76 ) Clinton , CT
VANDI AUTO SUPPLY LIMITED SPORTSMEN
Pos., Driver, Car #, Hometown
1. Lawrence P. Barnett ( 73 ) Moosup , CT
2. Zachary Robinson ( 89 ) Putnam , CT
3. Troy Waterman ( 7 ) Danielson , CT
4. Travis Jurcik ( 51 ) Moosup , CT
5. Brent Gleason ( 01 ) Griswold , CT
6. Jeffery Van Pelt ( 13 ) East Providence , RI
7. Al Stone III ( 52 ) Durham , CT
8. Jon Porter ( 38 ) East Lyme , CT
9. Tyler Trott ( 80 ) E. Hartford , CT
10. Corey Fanning ( 47 ) Mapleville , RI
11. Bert Ouellette ( 93 ) Ellington , CT
12. Kevin Mason ( 37 ) West Warwick , RI
13. Charles H. Stott III ( 10 ) Medway , MA
14. Aaron Plemons ( 67 ) Uncasville , CT
15. Edward Flanagan, Jr. ( 5 ) Warwick , RI
16. Kristopher Kay ( 8 ) Dudley , MA
17. Nicholas Anderson ( 00 ) Oxford , MA
18. Samantha Dell ( 28RI ) Pascoag , CT
19. Jacob Coutu ( 33 ) Moosup , CT
20. Tommy Shea ( 45 ) Somers , CT
21. Nicholas Hovey ( 16 ) Chaplin , CT
22. Ryan Waterman ( 75 ) Danielson , CT
23. Tim Poulin ( 22T ) N Grosvenordale , CT
24. Scott Sundeen ( 36 ) Sutton , MA
DNS Jason Finkbein ( 46 ) Manchester , CT
DNS Doug Benoit ( 12 ) Swansea , MA
EXIT REALTY PRO TRUCK CHALLENGE
Pos., Driver, Car #, Hometown
1. Gerard Giordano Jr. ( 15 ) Freeport, NY
2. Connor Souza ( 38 ) East Providence, RI
3. Andrew Morin ( 10 ) Old Saybrook, CT
4. Nathan Smith ( 55 ) Greene, RI
5. Devon Jencik ( 23 ) Canton, CT
6. Dave Koenig ( 97 ) Oceanside, NY
7. Kyle Gero ( 90 ) Baltic, CT
8. Lucas Leone ( 1 ) Southington, CT
9. Lloyd Anderson ( 48 )
10. Jim Boyle ( 02 ) East Windsor, CT
11. Randy Burr ( 32 ) Middleboro, MA
12. Chris Taylor ( 5 ) East Lyme, CT
13. Jim Thompson ( 87NH ) Bristol, CT
14. Rick Ashlaw ( 28 ) South Windsor, CT
15. Ethan Brown ( 25 ) Floral Park, NY
16. Ariana (Ari) Jencik ( 33 ) Canton, CT
17. Emma Monahan ( 78 ) Waterford, CT
18. Johnny Silva ( 67 )
19. Devin Deshaies ( 01 ) Burrillville, CT
20. Josh Stringer ( 29 ) East Killingly, CT
21. Andy Pellegrini ( 6 ) North Grosvenordale, CT
Pos., Driver, Car #, Hometown
1. Randy Cabral ( 74 ) Kingston, MA
2. Ben Seitz ( 17 ) Pocassett, MA
3. Avery Stoehr ( 39 ) Lakeville, MA
4. Todd Bertrand ( 47 ) Danielson, CT
5. Joey Payne ( 45 ) Fairlawn, NJ
6. Doug Cleveland ( 87 ) Sudbury, MA
7. John Zych Jr. ( 9 ) Mendon, MA
8. Mike Horn ( A1 ) Ashland, MA
9. Jake Trainor ( 8 ) Medway, MA
10. Richie Coy ( 19 ) Ringwood, NJ
11. Eric Bacon ( 26 ) Brimfield, MA
12. Chris Vosey ( 3 ) Gloversville, NY
13. Chase Dowling ( 20 ) Roxbury, CT
14. Jim Chambers ( 21 ) Atkinson, NH
15. Jim Santa Maria ( 97 ) Burlington, CT
NORTH EAST MINI STOCK TOUR
Pos., Driver, Car #, Hometown
1. Nick Anderson ( 55 ) Oxford, MA
2. Desmond Skillings ( 90 ) Antrim, NH
3. Mike Viens ( 85 ) Seekonk, MA
4. Nick Maniatis ( 63 ) Hooksett, NH
5. Emerson Cayer ( 88 ) Contoocook, NH
6. Cody Leblanc ( 7NH ) Berlin, NH
7. Tim Paquette ( 93 ) Bennington, NH
8. Nic Skillings ( 11 ) Hillsboro, NH
9. Tom Silva ( 31 )
10. Ken Marier ( 1 ) Littleton, NH
11. Kevin Moore ( 04 ) Moosup, CT
12. Pat Houle ( 57 ) Vernon, VT
13. Andrew Farnham ( 09 )
14. Bill Schoeler ( 84 ) Warwick, RI
15. Jeff Heath ( 36 ) Chicopee, MA
16. Timmy Shepard ( 33X )
17. Raymond Herman Sr. ( 91 )
18. Nadine Coates ( 40 ) Newport, NH
19. Richard Fournier ( 20 ) Warwick, MA
DNS Dave Trudeau Jr. ( 97 ) Mansfield, CT
PRO 4 MODIFIEDS
Pos., Driver, Car #, Hometown
1. Randy Cabral ( 0 ) Kingston, MA
2. Brett Meservey ( 93 ) Chatham, MA
3. Doug Meservey Jr. ( 67 ) Harwich, MA
4. Brayden Meservey ( 5 ) Brewster, MA
5. Ben Ashford ( 24 ) Randolph, VT
6. Ed Field ( 38 ) Deep River, CT
7. Craig Phillips ( 66L ) Oakham, MA
8. Kurt Lester ( 57L ) Suffield, CT
9. Douglas Vinor ( 55L ) Harrison, MI