Seekonk Speedway Race Magazine August 19th - Page 12

Tom Scully, Jr. had a Saturday night he’ll long remember. His win in the laps-added Phil’s Propane Triple Crown was more like a fighter plane dogfight than a Pro Stock race, as Dave Darling swung in on his tail on lap 16, two laps after he had wrested the lead away from Bobby Pelland III. From there, the combat duo flew 45 circuits of high-octane combat with Darling constantly all over Scully’s six o’clock looking for a way past. Time and again, he seemed lined up to take the underneath move but Scully would shut the door . . . or set up to make the outside move but unable to get around. This season’s victory aces were locked into mortal combat for supremacy and neither would give an inch or back away.

But finally, with five laps remaining, Scully remained in the lead and flying on afterburners. Darling was inches behind and pushing hard when his speed outdid the grip his tired had on the pavement and his back end snapped out in a turn. Fortunately, he spun directly into the infield so that the closing squadron of Pro Stocks behind him did not come crashing in. Caution flew, Alex Mielnicki made for the pits and the field reformed for the restart. And the crowd in the stands was, at last, able to breathe once again.

On the restart, Scully pulled away from Ryan Vanasse and his Pelland went underneath into second on Scully’s tail. But Tom was not about to be denied and kept up the torrid pace. Pelland, too, used all the trickes in the racer’s handbook but Scully was not to be denied and, with Pelland chewing at his bumper, flashed under the checkers with the win, bringing him to three on the season.

Vanasse followed in third and Kenny Spencer, driving the 88 in Kevin Casper’s absence, scored fourth, Fred Astle, Jr. rounded out the top five.

Scully started outside Darling in the fourth row as Larry Gelinas and Bob Hussey led from the front. Pelland lurked in row two, under Dick Houlihan. Kyle Casper and Radical Rick Martin made up row three. Out of the starting box, Gelinas took the front and Pelland slid under Hussey into second in turn two and then went to Gelinas’ bumper.

Pelland squeezed past Gelinas and less than a lap later, Casper slid underneath and into second. Scully was coming forward and wedged under Gelinas on lap five. Vanasse was following and on the next lap, he was working below Gelinas.

In the meantime, Pelland had jetted out to a twelve-car lead over Casper, who was chased by Scully, Vanasse, Darling, Gelinas and Houlihan. But Alex Mielnicki was around and Mike Brightman piled in and Hussey, who also had been involved joined them in pitting for repairs.

Pelland and Casper came off the line together and Pelland edged ahead. Scully came in beneath Casper for second as behind them, Darling worked in under Vanasse. By lap 12, Pelland was leading and Scully was on his bumper. Darling was moving with Casper on his outside and Pelland was working with Houlihan on the outside.

Scully leapfrogged into the lead on lap 15 and Darling went to work on Pelland getting underneath for some wheel-to-wheel. Vanasse, having passed Casper, was now fourth followed by Casper, Houli and Astle.

Scully now led Darling, Vanasse and Pelland in a nose-to-tail snake which led a field which had gone single file. Casper ran fifth ahead of Astle and Spencer. Scully and Darling commanded attention, now, as they began an epic battle for the win.

The field now ran hot laps without changing position until Astle got under Casper on lap 28. From there, the inexorable pace resumed with no passing through laps 28, 29, 30, 31 and 32. Spencer got past Casper and ran in under Astle. It took Kenny five laps to get past and then Astle stayed in contention for the position for the remainder of the race.

Scully still had Darling all over his bumper in lap 36, followed by Vanasse and Pelland.

Vanasse began to pick it up on lap 43 with Pelland still on his coattails. And Darling continued to harrass Scully as the field rocketed along into lap 50. At this point, Houlihan retired to the pits.

The field continued to run single file until lap 60, when Darling’s spin pulled the entire field back together. The restart featured a battle between Scully and Vanasse which ended with Scully back in the lead and Pelland worming his way under Vanasse into second. Pelland looked under Scully but was denied. Vanasse continued to pursue them under pressure from Spencer who now had Astle on his back with Casper on Astle’s outside.

Gelinas had moved in, now and got under Casper, but Kyle ran hard and held him off to the line.

Scully ran home to the win and the Triple Crown.

Sixth went to Casper, followed by Gelinas, a resurgent Dave Darling, Martin and Daryl Stampfl.