Dave Berghman commanded the Pro 4 Modifieds at the Seekonk Pro Stock/Super Late Models Nationals for 4/5ths of the feature, and especially at the checkered flag for a big win while Dave’s wife, Robin hustled into third one lap after he took the lead from Phil Lausier. She was unable to dislodge Brett Meservey from second, but the first and third between Dave and Robin set up a husband-wife up on the post-race podium.
It was a family finish for the Meserveys as well as Doug Meservey, Jr. chased Robin across the line in fourth. Bad luck for Dan Meservey, however, as he was eliminated in a lap one crash.
But the First Annual Jim Darlington Memorial – with a couple dozen of Jim’s family from all across the country at the Speedway to watch – lent Dave an excellent setting to show off his skills.
NEMA hotshoe Randy Cabral had renumbered his Pro 4 with Darlington’s old number – 73 – and Randy checked in right behind fifth place finisher Lausier.
Lausier and Brett shared the front row and Phil ducked away from the pole into the lead. Doug eased Brett out of second from low in row two while Berghman looked underneath. Robin and Cabral dueled in row three. One lap in, two cars were stacked together in the turn, bringing a halt to the action. With one lap gone, Mark Charrette, Dan Meservey and Tom Royer were in the pits for the duration.
The lap one resart had Lausier and Brett ahead of Doug and Berghman while again Robin and Cabral held down row three. Lausier was away and Doug got under Brett. Dave Berghman vaulted to third on the next circuit, setting Brett back to forth, just ahead of Robin and Cabral. Two laps later, Berghman dropped under Lausier to make the pass into the lead. He quickly took it out to a three-car gap over Brett as Robin overhauled third place with Cabral at her back.
By lap 6, the order of finish for the field was established as Robin passed Lausier for third. The twelve cars remaining in the field which started at 16, were in a fast pace-line but over the next 19 laps, their order did not change. There was, however, plenty of action as Brett refused to go away and spent a good deal of time on the leader’s back bumper. Robin was a few cars back in third and having a tough time fending off Cabral’s persistent attacks. Cabral fell off the pace on lap seven, to be replaced by Doug Meservey in third. Lausier settled in at fifth.
Twelve laps in, the speedy front four was dealing with lapped cars. Meservey did his best to stay on Dave Berghman’s bumper through the passing, continuing to look underneath as the laps wore down.
With five laps remaining, he was all over Dave’s back with great insistency. But the wily Berghman continued to hold his line and defeat Meservey’s repeated attempts. Robin had closed up to Brett’s bumper.
Under the white flag and Meservey made a final attempt at getting under Berghman for the win but was denied and settled for second while Robin scored third. Doug, Jr. and Lausier rounded out the top five. Cabral was sixth, followed by Randy Clark. PJ Peters’ eighth place was the leading car in the Pro 4 Lights subdivision. Dana Willis was ninth and Mark Ryder rounded out the top ten.