Thompson, Conn: The Sunoco World Series of Auto Racing presented by Xtra Mart was highlighted by
an exciting NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour finish that saw Rowan Pennink drive to victory lane and
Ryan Preece earn a solid third place finish to earn the series championship. Other feature winners on
the final day of the World Series were Kerry Malone in the Sunoco Modified Series, John Zych, Jr. in
NEMA midgets, Ben Seitz in ISMA action, and Larry Gelinas in the Granite State Pro Stock Series.
Rowan Pennink used a late-race pass on lap 133 to take the lead and eventual win in the
Sunoco World Series 150 presented by Xtra Mart Sunday afternoon. The victory was Pennink’s
second win in the series. Ryan Preece’s third place finish secured the 2013 NASCAR Whelen Modified
Tour Championship for the driver, who becomes the youngest champion in series history at 22 years,
11 months and 25 days old. The championship also marks the second title for Flamingo Motorsports.
The team previously won with driver Mike Stefanik in 2006.
ISMA FEATURE FINISH (Top-8): 1. Ben Seitz, Bourne, MA; 2. Chris Perley, Rowley, MA; 3.
Alison Cumens, Lydell, PA; 4. Lou Cicconi, Aston, PA; 5. Eric Lewis, Solvay, NY; 6. Mark Sammut,
London, Ont; 7. Tim Ice, Seville, OH; 8. Moe Lilje, Vickery, OH;
SUNOCO MODIFIED FEATURE FINISH (Top-10): 1. Kerry Malone, Needham, MA; 2. Ryan
Preece, Berlin, CT; 3. Woody Pitkat, Stafford Springs, CT; 4. Dennis Perry, Pawcatuck, CT; 5. Kyle
James, Ashaway, CT; 6. Keith Rocco, Meriden, CT; 7. Matt Galko, Meriden, CT; 8. Michael Gervais,
Southbury, CT; 9. Matt Gallo, Berlin, CT; 10. Dave Salzarulo, Monson, MA.
NEMA MIDGET FEATURE FINISH (Top-10): 1. John Zych, Jr., Mendon, MA; 2. Bobby Santos,
Franklin, MA; 3. Randy Cabral, Kingston, MA; 4. Russ Stoehr, Bridgewater, MA; 5. Greg Stoehr,
Bridgewater, MA; 6. Alan Chambers, Atkinson, NH; 7. Paul Scally, Raynham, MA; 8. Bethany Stoehr,
Bridgewater, MA; 9. James Santa Maria, Burlington, CT; 10. Kenny Johnson, Bethany, CT.
GRANITE STATE PRO STOCK SERIES (Top-10): 1. Larry Gelinas, Buxton, ME; 2. Mike O’
Sullivan, Springfield, MA; 3. Tommy O’Sullivan, Springfield, MA; 4. Jim Banfield, Glastonbury, CT; 5.
Louie Mechalides, Tyngsboro, MA; 6. Billy Brady, Marston Mills, NY; 7. Dillon Moltz, Waterford, CT; 8.
George Bessette, Danbury, CT; 9. Dennis Maxfield, Fitchburg, MA; Carl Eriksson, Deep River, CT.
WHELEN MODIFIED TOUR FEATURE FINISH: 1. Rowan Pennink, Huntingdon Valley, PA; 2.
Donny Lia, Jericho, NY; 3. Ryan Preece, Berlin, CT; 4. Bobby Santos, Franklin, MA; 5. Ron Silk,
Norwalk, CT; 6. Max Zachem, Preston, CT; 7. Matt Hirschman, Northampton, PA; 8. Doug Coby,
Milford, CT; 9. Todd Szegedy, Ridgefield, CT; 10. Justin Bonsignore, Holtsville, NY; 11. Timmy
Solomito, Islip, NY; 12. Chuck Hossfeld, Ransomville, NY; 13. Ron Yuhas, Jr., Groton, CT; 14. Woody
Pitkat, Stafford Springs, CT; 15. Keith Rocco, Wallingford, CT; 16. Mike Stefanik, Coventry, RI; 17.
Glen Reen, Wilbraham, MA; 18. Jimmy Zacharias, Candor, NY; 19. Jamie Tomaino, Howell, NJ; 20.
John Beatty, Jr., Merrick, NY; 21. David Salzarulo, Monson, MA; 22. Wade Cole, Hartland, CT; 23. Ted
Christopher, Plainville, CT; 24. Ken Heagy, Calverton, NY; 25. Ed Flemke, Jr., Southington, CT; 26.
Eric Goodale, Riverhead, NY; 27. Bryon Chew, Mattituck, NY; 28. Rob Fuller, Boylston, MA; 29. Cole
Powell, Mt. Brydges, Ont., Canada
Thompson Speedway Celebrates Champions At Banquet
Thompson, Conn: Thompson Speedway honored its 2013 track champions and celebrated
its 73rd season of racing at its annual awards banquet Friday evening. Champions in all five NASCAR
Whelen All-American Series divisions took center stage as they put an exclamation point on a season
defined by competitive racing in spite of a rain-plagued year. Keith Rocco of Meriden, Conn. led a
contingent of drivers to earn series crowns with a championship in the coveted Sunoco Modified
Other champions included: Rick Gentes of Burriville, RI in the Late Models, Cam McDermott in the Lite
Modified division, Steve Kenneway in the Xtra Mart Limited Sportsman division, and Monster Mini Stock
Champion Eric Bourgeois.
Mini Stock driver Mike Viens of Seekonk, Mass. and Late Model driver Marc Curtis, Jr. of Worcester,
Mass. were the recipients of the Chief Starter’s Award presented by Tim Bennett. The award
recognizes sportsmanship displayed by drivers in the NASCAR Whelen All American Series divisions.
The Sunoco Modified division crown was decided in a highly contested battle that went right down to
the last lap of the last race. Rocco, who held a mere two point lead heading into the final regular
season event, finished second that night to Woody Pitkat of Stafford Springs, Conn., whose race win
tied him for the championship. Rocco’s division-leading five victories served as the tie-breaker and
catapulted Rocco to the head table for Friday night’s festivities to celebrate his fourth Thompson
Speedway track championship. Rocco accomplished a total of nine top-five finishes throughout the
season. Cassie Rocco shared in the honors as the championship car owner. Rocco’s
accomplishments at Thompson and throughout the state also earned him the title of NASCAR Whelen
All-American Series Connecticut State Champion and will also be honored by NASCAR in Charlotte in
“This championship was different because it was my first as a car owner. Without the people
behind me – this team, the people who show up every Thursday – this championship wouldn’t be
possible,” said Rocco. “It was a short season, but we made sure we had fun. We laughed, we joked.
The people on my team are just awesome and they make this sport fun.”
Rocco also said he would be returning to Thompson for another full season in 2014.
Special awards were presented to Sunoco Modified Most Improved driver, Jason Sundeen, and Rookie-
of-the-Year, Paul Newcomb.
Rick Gentes of Woonsocket, R.I. added to his auto racing legacy with the 2013 Late Model
championship after taking it down to the wire. The division title was decided on the final regular season
event in which Glenn Boss of Danielson, Conn. entered the race with a four point lead over Gentes.
His brought home his No. 70 machine in the seventh position to claim the crown over Boss and earn
his fifth Thompson Speedway track championship. In total, Gentes earned three victories, six top-five
and nine top-10 finishes throughout the season. Gentes’ accomplishments put him second on the
tracks all-time win list with a total of 72 career victories.
Special awards were presented to Late Model Most Improved driver, Marc Curtis, Jr., and Rookie-of-
the-Year, John Lowinski-Loh, Jr.
Cam McDermott of Scituate, RI. earned his third consecutive Thompson track championship with a
crown in the Lite Modified division for the second straight year. McDermott began his title streak in the
Thompson Modifieds, and continued it even after moving to the Lite Modified division in 2012.
McDermott’s season was dominating with six victories and nine top-five finishes. McDermott, who will
move to the Sunoco Modified division next season, finished the season 22 points ahead of John
Studley of Framingham, Mass.
Special awards were presented to Lite Modified Most Improved driver, Joseph Boivin, and Rookie-of-
the-Year, Bob Vojtila.
Lowell, Mass. native Steve Kenneway and Norwich, Conn.’s Banta Racing, owned by Charlie and
David Banta, celebrated their first Thompson Speedway track championship in the Xtra Mart Limited
Sportsman division. Kenneway entered the final race of the season with a 12-point lead over Jason
Chicolas of Sutton, Mass. Kenneway suffered a flat tire early in the race but rallied to a sixth place
finish to secure the division crown. Banta Racing, who has fielded cars in the division for the last 14
seasons, enjoyed one victory, five top-five, and eight top-10 finishes in only their second year with
Kenneway behind the wheel.
Special awards were presented to the Xtra Mart Limited Sportsman Most Improved driver, Kevin
Mason, and Rookie-of-the-Year, Travis Jurcik.
Eric Bourgeois of East Haddam Conn. waited nine years to celebrate a second Thompson
Speedway track championship. The 2004 Monster Mini Stock Champion earned his second title after
entering the final event of the season with only a six point lead over defending champion Chad Baxter.
Bourgeois, who lost a championship bid last season to Baxter by eight points, wasn’t about to let his
efforts of the season slip away. Bourgeois took down the win that night and, in doing so, secured the
division crown. In all, Bourgeois and car owner Bruce Stevens earned a total of two victories and never
placed outside the top-five all season long.
Special awards were presented to Monster Mini Stock Most Improved driver, Nathan Taylor, and
Rookie-of-the-Year, Anthony Comforti.
The evening concluded with the presentation of the John Hoenig Memorial Award. The
award, which recognizes one individual for their hard work and dedication to the Speedway, was
presented to Richard “Mouse” Morrill.
Morrill has worked for the speedway for 47 years in various capacities, but it best known for
his role as leader of one of the very best track crews in the country. Thompson officials have
depended on his leadership to keep them informed on track conditions. He directs accident scenes
and the cleanup that follows. He has earned the respect of not only every race official at Thompson
Speedway, but has received rave reviews from touring series directors for his ability to deal with on-
track problems and to accurately report back to them the exact conditions that exist on the track
SUNOCO MODIFIED FINAL POINT STANDINGS: 1. KEITH ROCCO, Meriden, CT; 2. Woody
Pitkat, Stafford Springs, CT; 3. Kerry Malone, Needham, MA; 4. Dennis Perry, Pawcatuck, CT; 5. Ryan
Preece, N. Falmouth, MA; 6. Todd Ceravolo, Gales Ferry, CT; 7. John Catania, Ludlow, MA; 8. Matt
Gallo, Berlin, CT; 9. Paul Newcomb, Plymouth, MA; 10. Jason Sundeen, Douglas, MA.
LATE MODEL FINAL POINT STANDINGS: 1. RICK GENTES, Burriville, RI; 2. Glenn Boss,
Danielson, CT; 3. John Lowinski-Loh, Jr., Milford, MA; 4. Chad LaBastie, Uxbridge, MA; 5. Marc Curtis,
Jr., Worcester, MA; 6. Damon Tinio, Mendon, MA; 7. John Falconi, Oakham, MA; 8. Derryck Anderson,
Jr., Coventry, RI; 9. Louis Romiza, E. Falmouth, MA; 10. Bob O’Connell, Jr., Wrentham,