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Craig Gabriele
       

 

 

The Best NASCAR Racing This Weekend is @ Stafford Motor Speedway for the 42nd Annual CARQUEST Tech-Net Spring Sizzler.

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The wheelmen of the WHELEN MODIFIED TOUR will run their second event of the 2013 season @ Stafford Motor Speedway on Saturday and Sunday April 26 & 27.

This will be a 200 lap event. The 42nd Annual running of the Spring Sizzler. Stafford Speedway is rich in Modified history. A must see race for any Modified race fan.

Anybody who is anybody in Modified racing has run in the Spring Sizzler. It’s all about tradition, tradition and more tradition. It will be my 41st Spring Sizzler. I did not go to the SK Modified Spring Sizzler held in 1998, because the WMT was not on Stafford’s schedule that year.

I still remember the 1st one.

Fred DeSarro, in Len Boehler's #3 coupe, assumed the lead of the race with 10-laps to go when fortune deserted Ed Flemke, Sr. in the guise of a broken water pump. DeSarro went onto claim the first ever running of the race. DeSarro was all over the back of the red pinto of Flemkes 2x. First on the high side and then the low side to no avail. Then the 2x broke and it was all DeSarro. The 33-car starting field included 19 coupes and 14 late model cars, including 7 Pintos. Denis Giroux and Bugs Stevens, also driving coupes, finished second and third behind DeSarro. Leo Cleary was fourth Jerry Cook was fifth.

The Inaugural Spring Sizzler, promoted by Bruce Cohen, Dr. Dick Berggren, and Lou Boyd, was an artistic and financial success.

The Sizzler will have to go a long way to beat the 1ST WMT event of the 2013 season The Icebreaker held @ Thompson Speedway. The racing was as good as anything NASCAR has to offer. There are some serious wheelmen on this tour.

There is a big added incentive to come out and win this year’s Spring Sizzler. A $25,000 bonus to any driver who can win the 3 events sponsored by CARQUEST and you have to win the Sizzler to get it all started.

 The CARQUEST 150 will be the second event for the $25,000 bonus and will be held August 2nd.

The 3rd and final event for the $25,000 bonus will be the CARQUEST Fall Final. This event will also be 150 laps and be held on September 28 & 29.

This is a great year to be a fan heading to Stafford Motor Speedway for all of the WMT events and the regular Friday night events featuring the SK Modifieds.

We are working on being able to cover all of the special events and the Friday nights events all year long. Time will tell.

The WMT has the best Modified Drivers, teams and owners of any series out there, including the Cup series.

So the place to be this weekend is at Stafford, CT and not Richmond, VA.

So who are the favorites?

Anyone of the 13 teams listed below can win or should I say will win the 2013 Spring Sizzler.

 52  Doug Coby: Coby the 2012 WMT Champion had 3 WMT wins in 2012 at Stafford. Coby has 2 Sizzler wins 2006 & 2012. Coby has four wins, two poles and 14 top 10s in 32 NWMT starts at Stafford.

3  Ted Christopher: The 2008 WMT Champion driving the Boehler owned #3.  TC 12 wins, four poles and 43 top 10s in 80 career WMT starts at Stafford. Leads all WMT drivers with five wins in the Spring Sizzler – one more than Mike Stefanik. TC is an eight-time NASCAR Whelen All-American Series track champion at Stafford out of the SK Modified division and has a record 118 overall career feature wins at Stafford entering this week’s events.

22 Mike Stefanik: Stefanik is a 7-Time Champion of the WMT. 1989, 1991, 1997, 1998, 2001, 2002 and 2006.Holds WMT records for most titles (seven), wins (73), poles (48), top fives (221) and top 10s (293). Leads all drivers with 20 wins, 50 top fives, 70 top 10s and 2,165 laps led at Stafford. Also has a tour-best average finish of eighth across 91 career starts there. Has won the Spring Sizzler four times, one behind Ted Christopher’s total. Three of those came during championship seasons of 1989, 1997 and 1998 while the other occurred in 1990.
 His last win at Stafford was the 2008 Fall Final, a span of 17 races.

44 Bobby Santos III: With brand new sponsor Curb Records/Brendan Kelley Music .  The 2010 WMT Champion and 2011 Spring Sizzler Champ. Has four wins, three poles and nine top 10s in 16 career starts at Stafford.

4 Donny Lia: 2-time WMT Champion 2007 & 2009.  In 32 career starts at Stafford he has recorded three wins, seven poles and 18 top 10s. Won the 2007 Spring Sizzler en route to the first of his two WMT titles.

 Still looking for their first Sizzler win

6 Ronnie Silk: 2011 WMT Champion. Has a win, two poles and 12 top 10s in 29 career starts at Stafford. His win came in the May 2011 event.Has that win and seven top fives in 12 Stafford starts since joining forces with the No. 6 team.

16 Ryan Preece:  Has a win, three poles, 11 top 10s and an average finish of 13th in 22 career NWMT starts at Stafford. His Stafford win came in the August 2009 event. His best Spring Sizzler finish is second, recorded last year.  Was the 2011 NWAAS SK Modified division champion at Stafford, where he has six career wins.

2 Todd Szegedy: The 2003 WMT Champion. Has four wins, two poles, 20 top fives and an average finish of ninth in 44 career starts at Stafford. Last win there came in August 2010. Has three career runner-up finishes in the Spring Sizzler, including his 2003 championship season.

51 Justin Bonsignore: Has a pole and five top 10s in 12 career starts at Stafford with a best result of sixth, which was recorded in last year’s Spring Sizzler.

76 Jimmy Blewett

93 Rowan Pennink

72 Chuck Hossfeld

79 Woody Pitkat the 2012 New Smyrna Speedway World Series Champion.

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