Even though over the last few years the Pure Stock division has entered the season with a long list of favorites, it seems like the 2019 season might be an outlier to that. That’s because Doug Benoit was so dominant last year.
The Swansea, Massachusetts, driver rode to Victory Lane more times than not and was consistently the fastest car on the track as part of the Fast Friday program. With his first title under his belt, and all the hardware that came with it now hanging in the shop, Benoit must turn his attention to chasing more trophies. It doesn’t seem like he’s going to lose any steps from last year’s effort either. With the same team assembled, Benoit should be the favorite for the championship.
But, as the old saying in racing goes, it isn’t over until it’s over. Benoit has a stout list of returning veterans who are chasing him into the new campaign as they hope to add their name to the list of Seekonk champions. Greg Perry seemed to pick up the pace even more last year, especially in the second half. Perry has been around the division for years — and has always shown the speed needed to run at the front of the field — but sometimes didn’t have the luck on his side. If he can keep the same speed under the hood of the No. 00, and keep that luck alongside him, Perry will certainly be one driver to watch going down the stretch.
How about veterans Lenny Sousa and Danny Massa? Both drivers are two more that have been around for a while and have plenty of experience behind the wheel. Sousa purchased a new car halfway through last year and visited Victory Lane shortly after. The speed he showed was the best of his career — and if he can keep that going — it’s going to be tough to bet against him. Massa, who connected himself with the Scott Bruneau Sportsman team, found himself at the front more often last year as well.
Amy Arsenault is another veteran of the Pure Stock class. She’s been consistently the top female driver in the class and has been around a while driving her No. 9. Her family has plenty of racing experience as well, with her father, Sparky Arsenault, winning multiple Sportsman titles, and helping her find her groove on the track. Amy came a mere few inches (literally) away from the championship a few years ago, so she has already shown she can put herself in position. Marrisa Morgan, Ava Chouinard, Missy Charette and Katie Pangelinan are a few more females looking to challenge.
Additional returning veterans include Max Bergstrom & Daryl Perry. It looks like Rookie of the Year contenders will include Justin Menard, Marc Sienkiewicz and Alice Benoit.
The 2019 Pure Stock season gets underway as part of the Fast Friday opener on Friday, May 31. The opening race of the season is slated for 25 laps.