Dave Darling is perfect in extra distance in 2012. Rick Martin makes it back to Victory Lane. Joe Kohler picks up first win of the season, DeGasparre wins second LM event.
Dave Darling was daring and dynamic on Saturday, June 23, as he picked up his second win of the season in the 75 lap Pro Stock main event. His last win came on opening day, in the first 75 lap feature of the season. Darling used a late race restart to move past Tom Scully Jr, who dominated the middle portion of the event, and took over the lead for good.
John Dabrowski led the early portion of the race, as he and Ken Spencer raced wheel to wheel for the first several laps, swapping the lead back and forth. It wasn’t until a lap 12 caution when Scully lined up aside Dabrowski and was able to power past into the lead. While Scully Jr spent the middle portion of the race at the top of the leader board, there was a lot of action going on behind him. Darling was weaving his way through the field from his 12th place starting position, and was able to put himself in the right place at the right time, using the inside and outside lanes, and a couple of timely cautions to close in on Scully. Several cars held the runner up position, but without much luck. Mike Brightman ran second for a while, only to fall out of the top three, and have a tire go down with less than 10 laps to get. Kevin Casper was running third when a cut left rear tire sent him around and into the wall midway through the event. Ryan Vanasse was sent to the rear for the contact with Casper, but worked his way back up to second by the time the checkered fell.
Darling used the outside lane for over 20 laps, trying to work by Scully, but Tom was on his game. Tom fell back to third by the end of the race, with Dick Houlihan and Craig Weinstein rounded out the top five. Tom Scully Sr, Kyle Casper, Bob Hussey, Phil Meany and Dave Silvia finished sixth through tenth. Defending Pro Stock Champion Fred Astle Jr suffered a broken transmission on the second lap, and was forced out of the race.
Gerry DeGasparre Jr was sitting in the right place at the right time, when the leaders tangled while pushing hard, and inherited the lead. Ron Barboza Jr and Dylan Estrella were engaged in a tight battle when they got together on lap 7, forcing both cars to the back of the field. Once green, Gerry had his hands full with points leader Bobby Pelland III, as the pair raced wheel to wheel and bumper to bumper for several laps before Pelland went around after some contact on lap 12. Pelland suffered a broken radiator and was forced out of the event.
Once back to green, the Pawtucket native hit his marks and was not seriously challenged the rest of the way. Bill Bernard worked his way into second, but ran out of time to challenge DeGasparre. Tyler Thompson held on for third, with Jeramee Lillie and Estrella third through fifth. Bruce Rego, Danny Thibeault, Mike Marfeo, Ed Gannon and Brian Bigelow rounded out the top ten.
It has been a bit of time, but Rick Martin found his way back into the Winners Circle. Martin moved quickly from his third starting position and took over the lead from Dan Leach on lap five. Martin would go on and lead the rest of the way, comfortably, in the 25 lap feature. Scott Dion continued his good runs, finishing second in the main event, with John Paiva, Mike Cavallaro, and Leach making up the top five. Nick Uhrig, Barry Shaw, Jim Hawkins, Derek Robbie and Chris Igo Jr made up the top ten.
Joe Koehler moved past mid race leader Vinnie Arrenegado Jr with less than 5 laps remaining in the 25 lap Street Stock feature, and picked up his first win of the season. Kohler, who started fifth on the field, moved into the top three by lap three, and followed Arrenegado and Vinny Pangelinan as they battled for the lead for the first eleven laps, when Arrenegado finally took over just before a caution. Kohler moved into second, and attempted several times to squeeze past the Attleboro native, but to no avail. Vinnie continued to hang on to the top spot.
Paul Lallier was trying to find a way to the front, and was battling with Kohler and Arrenegado, when he spun into the infield with only 4 laps to go. Kohler took over on the restart, and held off a hard charging Scott Serydynski as the former Champion had moved through the pack and pressured the Johnson RI native to the checkered. Charles Beal of Ledyard, CT moved into third spot with only 2 laps remaining, but couldn’t get past either of the cars in front of him. Arrenegado held on for fourth and Scott Bruneau rounded out the top five. Craig Pianka, Mark Henshaw, Sparky Arsenault, Lallier and Chris DeMoura rounded out the top ten.