Speedbowl Champions (Finally) Crowned; Marcotte Lands First SK Modified® Win

Speedbowl Champions (Finally) Crowned; Marcotte Lands First SK Modified® Win

WATERFORD – After weather kept pushing off the Crowning of Champions, fans and competitors were finally greeted with some pleasant sun and temperatures on a November afternoon to wrap up the point battles on track. While some were already decided going into the event, the dust needed to settle on a couple before we knew for sure.

              RJ Marcotte was a strong competitor in the SK Lights with 5 wins in 2021, so it’s no surprise that he was one to watch in the 35 lap SK Modified® main event. After winning his heat race, Marcotte took full advantage of his pole starting spot and took off from Paul Buzel at the drop of the green. A returning Tim Jordan picked up where he left off in the summer with some aggressive moves moving him into a podium position early on, and ripping Troy Talman off of it as a result. With Marcotte in his own zip code, Buzel would try to hold off our seasoned vets until lapped traffic got involved. After a few elbows thrown, Buzel shuffled towards the back as the line of cars took full advantage of the check up. Talman, able to rally back and pass Jordan for second, didn’t have the laps on the board to reel in the leader allowing Marcotte to score his first Speedbowl win in the division.

Todd Owen only needed to take the green flag to clinch his third consecutive SK Modified® championship at the shoreline oval.

Going into the SK Light finale, only 3 points separated John O’Sullivan and Evan Bourgeois for the title. Both drivers had to start the race from mid-pack, leaving Nickolas Hovey and Isaiah Newcomb battling it out for the early race lead. Hovey would take control holding off Zack Sangermano and Newcomb battling it out behind him and O’Sullivan lying in wait. Newcomb would get shuffled back leaving the top 3 ahead of Bourgeois who would ride around in fourth, still technically the point leader with 5 laps to go. That’s when O’Sullivan dove into second and started pecking at Hovey for the lead. O’Sullivan then made quick work of Hovey, running into the lead with only 3 laps on the board, and Bourgeois moving into third. O’Sullivan’s quick thinking and bold moves paid off as he left with both the race win and the 2023 SK Light crown.

              The Late Model crown was already decided going into this event. The only question that remained was: would Jason Palmer score win #100 before the checkered flag flew on the year? From the drop of the green, it looked like it was a sure thing. Palmer used the outside groove over Brody Monahan to rocket out into the lead and take command of the 30 lap feature. Near the halfway point, Monahan’s car came back to life and he kept the pressure on Palmer, making several attempts to pass but was unable to do so. Palmer’s eighth win of the season makes 100 total Speedbowl wins, 53 of which came in the INEX Legend Cars and moves him up to 4th on the all time win list. This would also be his 4h championship in the division.

Brody Monahan’s hot streak in the Trucks earlier in the season was a huge factor for the 2022 Legend Car Champion in securing the 2023 Truck Championship prior to the green flag flying. Rain pushed out the 50 lap special for the division to the finale putting extra emphasis on making it to the finish. Ed Ryan Jr. quickly ran away from the field with Kyle Gero and Tyler Chapman in Ryan’s tire tracks. After some careful planning, Chapman was able to squeeze by Gero for second, with Monahan not too far behind. Prior to halfway, Chapman took over the top spot from Ryan before a couple caution flags slowed down the middle part of the race, but also drummed up some drama. Chapman drifted high into the corner checking up Monahan, but Gero would be the one to take advantage of the opening and pull into the lead. Chapman recovered quickly and took back control of the race, but contact with Monahan would send Chapman pit side with a flat tire. The new front row of Gero and Ken Cassidy Jr spent the last 13 laps fighting for the top spot with Gero ultimately being able to hold off the two-time champ. Monahan rebounded to land himself on the podium, celebrating the crown in a confetti shower.

The Street Stocks point battle was mostly decided going into this race, it was going to take a lot of entrants and terrible luck to prevent Al Stone III from leaving with the crown. Veteran driver Ed Gertsch Jr controlled the race from the start, holding off Shawn Gaedeke. That wouldn’t last long as Gaedeke would fade backwards while Aaron Plemons turned up the heat. By lap 7, Plemons was able to take down Gertsch and control the race to the finish with Stone and Tony Macrino in his dust. The all time division win leader Al Stone III would leave with his fifth career championship.

Twenty-Six Mini Stocks showed up to deliver all kinds of drama with the crown on the line. Nick Pappacoda got off to a strong start over Joe Bavolacco with the rest of the field two-by-two. The tight pack of racing sent a couple cars around in a chain reaction early on, but it didn’t deter Pappacoda’s determination. Charles Beal, who was involved in the fracas, moved into second place. It was short lived however, as a spinning car came into accidental contact with Beal ending his strong run. With championship contender John Bavolacco now on the outside of Pappacoda, John was poised to take down the race win giving him the best opportunity to leave with the crown. Behind him, Pappacoda would get together with Jared Roy creating a mess that point leader Chris Garside would successfully dodge. With both contenders now on the front row for the final 8 laps John Bavolacco’s hopes of winning the crown would be dashed with Garside finishing directly behind him. This would mark his first championship at the Speedbowl after a career that covered X-Cars and Late Models also.

With that, that 2023 season has concluded at the Speedbowl. For off season updates and 2024 plans, keep an eye on our website www.SpeedbowlCT.com  and our social media channels, The New London-Waterford Speedbowl on Facebook and @SpeedbowlCT on Instagram and Twitter.



Unofficial Results

SK Modifieds® (35 Laps): 1. 84-RJ Marcotte[1]; 2. 2-Troy Talman[4]; 3. 47-Timmy Jordan[6]; 4. 81-Todd Owen[5]; 5. 25-Anthony Flannery[8]; 6. 9-Paul Buzel[3]; 7. 72-Adam Gada[2]; 8. 63-David Flammia[7]; 9. 22RI-Carl Kivisto[11]; 10. 49-John Bercham[9]; 11. 15-Jeff Fialkovich[10]; 12. 20-Dominic Capuano Jr[12]

Late Models (30 Laps): 1. 17-Jason Palmer[2]; 2. 31-Brody Monahan[1]; 3. 91-Charlie Rose[5]; 4. 8RI-Ryan Souliere[6]; 5. 5RI-Rich Staskowski[4]; 6. 9-Keith Scalia[3]; 7. 78-Emma Monahan[7]; 8. 0-Joey LeMay[8]; 9. 32-Jason Williams[9]

Street Stocks (25 Laps): 1. 67-Aaron Plemons[6]; 2. 12-Al Stone III[8]; 3. 13-Tony Macrino[7]; 4. 83-Ed Gertsch Jr[2]; 5. 9-Shawn Gaedeke[4]; 6. 80-Norm Root III[1]; 7. 30-Jaysin Beal[5]; 8. 9X-Daniel Meyer[9]; 9. 74-Joseph Arena[3]; 10. 28-Austin Flanagan[14]; 11. 21-Tom Musante[10]; 12. 56-Ike Chima[11]; 13. 58-David Ciastko[12]; 14. 56CT-Douglas Riley[13]; 15. 77-Andrew Gillis[15]

SK Lights (25 Laps): 1. 51-John O’Sullivan III[5]; 2. 16-Nickolas Hovey[2]; 3. 78-Evan Bourgeois[6]; 4. 47-Zachery Sangermano[3]; 5. 22-Isaiah Newcomb[1]; 6. 21-Sami Anderson[4]; 7. 15-Alexander Pearl[8]; 8. 51CT-Matt Brewer[10]; 9. 33-Hailey Desaulniers[7]; 10. X6-Bob King[9]; 11. 44-Alan Tirrell[12]; 12. 14-Kali Trapp[11]

Trucks (50 Laps): 1. 19CT-Kyle Gero[6]; 2. 11-Ken Cassidy Jr[3]; 3. 31-Brody Monahan[5]; 4. 81-Tyler Chapman[8]; 5. 33-Jake Coutu[10]; 6. 30-Charles Beal[2]; 7. 94-Anthony Naglieri[11]; 8. 52-Chris Palamar[12]; 9. 25-David Venice[13]; 10. 12-Ed Ryan Jr[4]; 11. 52CT-Sean Caron[1]; 12. 6X-Andrew Pellegrini[7]; 13. 32-Randy Burr[9]; 14. 54-Cameron Varricchio[14]

Mini Stocks (25 Laps): 1. 42-John Bavolacco[7]; 2. 83-Christopher Garside[9]; 3. 25-Charles Canfield[8]; 4. 31-Tommy Silva[14]; 5. 20-Joe Bavolacco[3]; 6. 81CT-TJ Racicot[19]; 7. 73-Eric Julian[10]; 8. 19-David Dorr[11]; 9. 1CT-Jared Roy[6]; 10. 11X-Vin Esposito[16]; 11. 22CT-Brad Caddick[2]; 12. 11-Jason Kokoszka[17]; 13. 6-Nicholas Pappacoda[1]; 14. 28-Erica Canfield[15]; 15. 72-David Lee[18]; 16. 81-Stacey Zentek[22]; 17. 46-John Curry Jr[23]; 18. 88-Bill Sylvia[4]; 19. 97-Dave Trudeau[13]; 20. 91-Raymond Herman Sr[21]; 21. 31K-Jack Aquilina[20]; 22. 22-Charles Beal[5]; 23. 85-Tom Jones Jr[24]; 24. (DNS) 70-Courtland Herman; 25. (DNS) 41-Dave Trudeau Jr; 26. (DQ) 7-Kyle Wing[12]


(Images by TK Race Photo)

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