This decade set Seekonk Speedway up for the future in a big way. The Pro Stocks took their first laps in competition, as a division that would bring the track through multiple decades of the future. It still stands as the top division today because of the strong base that D. Anthony built in this decade.
In the first sanctioned Pro Stock race, in August of ’78, Frank Carpenter would go to Victory Lane in a 50-lap feature. One year later, the Pro Stocks became a weekly division at Seekonk, opening the door for drivers to flood the track with new cars and prepare for battle in 30 lap feature races. In the first few events, names like Greg Bagnell, Len Ellis, Don Dionne and Bugsy Stevens were at the front of the field. All of them would be track success stories, long with names like Wayne Dion, George Murray and Jimmy Wilkins Jr. In ’78, Charlie Perry earned the title, while Dionne followed with one of his own in ’79.
As part of the B Class (now Late Models), multiple drivers started championship success before eventually becoming Pro Stock title holders. At the start of the decade, it was Dionne, Norm Holden, Joe Oliver and Vinny Annarummo earning top honors — while three of them eventually become Pro Stock champs. After that, Russ Webber and Hank Goff would win titles in ’75 and ’76, while the tradition continued at the end of the decade, with Wayne Dion and Joe Cerullo winning the title before moving to the Pro Stocks.
This decade continued a tradition of having some top names visit Victory Lane. Bobby Sprague, Ron Bouchard, George Summers, Billy Clarke, Fred Astle Sr., Pop Silvia, Wayne Darling and Fred DeSarro were just some of the winners — but there were many more who joined them at the top of the filed. This decade marked continued success for many veterans who had already made their presence known.