Seekonk Speedway’s “Fast Friday” series returned on July 22nd, and while the temperature soared above one hundred degrees, the action on the track was also as hot as ever. As always, the Seekonk Youth Racing Association 600 and 750 classes began the night, supported by the Sport Fours, Pure Stocks, and NEMA Lites.

Seekonk Speedway’s “Fast Friday” series returned on July 22nd, and while the temperature soared above one hundred degrees, the action on the track was also as hot as ever. As always, the Seekonk Youth Racing Association 600 and 750 classes began the night, supported by the Sport Fours, Pure Stocks, and NEMA Lites.

                The SYRA 600s rolled out first for a pair of eight lap heat races. Throughout the opening heat, Shelby Donovan and Curtis Rolando swapped the lead back and forth.  Their battle for the top spot was interrupted on the third lap, when Kiera Carpenter’s #88 mini cup unresponsively drifted to a halt at the entrance of turn one after a mechanical failure. On the restart, Donovan and Rolando continued to trade the lead. Running side by side, Rolando completed the last lap pass, taking the checkered flag by .051secs.

                Heat two was less eventful than the first. Pole sitter Taylor Bowser led laps one through three, but West Wareham’s Chase Belcher successfully passed Bowser exiting turn two and cruised to victory  by approximately a half second over the rest of the field. 

                In the SYRA 600 feature, the battle for the lead on lap three placed the shoe on Austin Blais’ other foot. Battling for the lead with pole sitter Taylor Bowser, Blais shoved the nose of his mini cup underneath Bowser exiting turn two, spinning the #07 of Bowser into the infield and docking Blais track position for aggressive driving. On the restart, Shelby Donovan passed David Lougee and inherited the lead. Donovan never looked back. While two time winner Curtis Rolando, David Lougee, and Chase Belcher scrambled for spots two through four behind her, Donovan notched her first career victory.

                The sister division with a little extra horsepower under the hood and a little more experience in the cockpit, the SYRA 750s, rolled out for eight lap heats and a twenty lap feature as well. In the first heat, Branden Dion picked off pole sitter Christine Cavallaro for the lead on lap two, and guided his #04 mini cup to the finish line ahead of Nick Lascuola, Willy Sanchez, and Cavallaro.

                In heat race two, pole sitter Tylar Nailor appeared to be on his way towards a solid night, but made contact with Ashley Kuhn on the back stretch to bring out the yellow flag for the two car spin. On the restart, Adam Swift grabbed ahold of the lead and added another heat win to his season totals.

                Tylar Nailor’s luck repeated itself in the feature. The pole sitter suffered from déjà vu on lap six, as he was spun as a result of an overzealous passing maneuver by the #33 of Nick Lascuola exiting turn two. Both cars were bumped to the tail end of the grid, and Branden Dion took the lead. Save for Lascuola charge through the field from seventh to second, the rest of the field marched in place, and Dion picked up the victory ahead of Lascuola, Kuhn, Sanchez, and Swift.

                In the Sport Four division’s lone heat race, Jewett City, Connecticut’s Chris Bissell overtook the leaders en route to taking the checkered flag over top five Kyle Pacheco, Rich Sprague, Ed Gould, and Taylor Therrien.

                The Sport Four twenty lap feature began with John Lamake’s 3-D Racing #28 four cylinder machine in the lead, but rookie Kyle Pacheco overtook the Warwick native after a near spin in between turns one and two. On the thirteenth lap, Pacheco was passed by the #10 of Rich Sprague. Despite a caution flag displayed for a flat right front on John Lamake, Sprague was able to hold onto the lead and head to Victory Lane for the second time.

      Visiting Seekonk for the second time this season were the NEMA Lites, the low cost driver development series for the NEMA Midgets. The midgets also competed in two eight lap heats, but raced in the co-main event with a twenty five lap feature.

                The first heat race was led start to finish by the #46 of Kenny Johnson, seeking his first career feature win. Bethany Stoehr moved from third to second and Christian Briggs, who started fourth, rounded out the top three.

                The second verse was the same as the first for the NEMA Lites. This time, it was Brandon Igo’s #48 who led start to finish ahead of the race’s biggest mover, Jim Santa Maria, who moved from fifth to second, and Andy Barrows.

                The NEMA Lites were led to the green flag in the feature by Kenny Johnson, who seized a two second advantage by mid the mid race juncture. Seth Carlson, also pursuing his first career feature win, slowly but surely moved from tenth to second, and set his sights on the leader Johnson. After Carlson inched to the rear of Johnson’s midget, trouble stuck with two to go. In the midst of a fierce battle for the lead, Johnson got loose exiting turn two. Johnson’s #46 midget slid beyond the apron and onto the grass, where it tipped onto its side. After a red flag stoppage, Carlson took the green, white, and checkered flags for the very first time. Dave Moniz, Jim Santa Maria, Ian Cummings, and Lanson Fornoro rounded out the top five.

                In the main attraction, Seekonk Speedway’s own Pure Stocks capped off the night. In the first ten lap heat, a log jam in turn one brought out the yellow flag. While battling in the middle of the field, Rick Hayward, Jamie Salley, Tom Blackwell, and Jay Sullivan all made minor contact and spun in a chain reaction wreck. On the restart, Randy Moretti surpassed Bill Chouinard to attain the victory.

                Early trouble caused the yellow flag to fly high on lap one of heat two, as Dan Massa Jr. and Melissa Charette made contact and spun exiting turn four. Just as he did on the race start, John Robidoux maintained the lead on the restart and cruised home for the win ahead of Bob Hinckley and Jamie Burch.

                In search of his first victory, the #01 of Tom Blackwell led the field to the green flag for the start of the main event. Blackwell held the top spot without challenge until the caution flew on lap nine for a spin involving Jeremy Lambert on the back stretch. Following the restart, Bill Chouinard moved into the top five and blasted into the top two with a great handling car in both the inside and outside grooves. With ten to go, Chouinard took the lead from Blackwell and held off a late race charge from Jesse Melberg to send the #8 to victory lane for the first time in 2011. Behind Chouinard and Melberg were Tom Blackwell, David Desrosiers, and Derek DeMoura.