Saturday Night Recap From July 23

They say in racing that the young drivers sometimes can outlast the veterans.

Sometimes they are called “old guys” and sometimes they are called “washed up” at certain tracks across the United States. But, this past Saturday night showed that here at Seekonk Speedway, we have veterans who still know how to get the job done. In the extra distance, 65 lap, Phil’s Propane Triple Crown Series feature race, Rick Martin and Fred Astle put on a classic battle for the fans in attendance.

They both gave everything they had in the final laps of the race, crossing each other over when needed and doing a little door banging here and there in the final laps — but it was all clean, hard racing. It didn’t matter to either of them what the outcome was, as long as they both gave everything they had. Astle ended up crossing the stripe at the finish with the victory and Martin holding on for second — and obviously Martin was upset. But it didn’t matter. He knew that Astle, a driver he has been racing against for years, gave him plenty of racing room and respected him.

Forget the fact that there was a few crashes over the course of the race. Forget the fact that the fans were upset early on in the day because of the extreme heat. EVERYONE in attendance got a thrilling battle to the finish of the night and it is one many will remember for years to come. Congrats to Astle, who also took over the points lead with his victory.

Now… The Pro Stock race was not the only battle that took place on Saturday night. We started the racing action with a thrilling battle in the Spectator Drag Series and the first feature of the night was the Sports Trucks. Mike Duarte, native of Somerset, Massachusetts, was finally able to take the No. 50 truck into victory lane. Duarte has been among the fastest trucks all season but so far he hadn’t been able to take the checkers. This time was different. Duarte came from deep in the field and worked his way through, holding off former champion John Paiva in the final circuits to take down the victory. Congrats to Mike, his crew, and crew chief George Tourgee — who works hard between the truck and a Pro Stock weekly.

The Street Stock feature on Saturday was another classic battle and this time, Scott Bruneau came out on top in Everett’s Auto Parts Victory Lane. Bruneau was able to hold off some of the toughest competition in the Street Stock class including Scott Serydynski Jr., the all-time wins leader in the division. With his win, Bruneau extended the points lead he had coming into the night and continues to prove that he is the one to beat. It takes a lot to come from the back to the front each week in the Street Stocks and Bruneau is showing everyone he can get the job done. He’s already got one championship — is a second one not far away?

The Everett’s Auto Parts Late Model race was all sorts of redemption for Somerset, Massachusetts driver Austin Blais, who took down the victory in the 30 lap race. Blais crashed the last time the Late Models hit the track and his father Steve and Austin both put the car back together and they seem to have hit it right where they wanted it. He got to the front of the field and pulled away late, holding down the challenges of the rest of the field and grabbing another victory in his young career. Congrats to the Blais family — a hard working bunch who deserved to win.

Next week, we go racing with the Phil’s Propane Triple Crown Series finale for the Sports Trucks at 6 p.m. It will be a battle between Duarte, Chase Belcher, Mike Cavallaro and Lenny Guy. Who do you think will win?