Rocco Leads Waterford Super Saturday Winners


WATERFORD, Conn. -– Super Saturday Showdown hit the asphalt at Waterford Speedbowl Saturday with a seven-division racing card.

A briskly paced program saw Keith Rocco take home his third NASCAR Whelen All-American Series SK Modified win of the year. In other NASCAR action, a new face found the Valenti Auto Mall Late Model winner’s circle as Vin Esposito of Seymour claimed the checkered flag. Josh Galvin won again in the Street Stocks while Garrett Denton was victorious in the Mini Stocks.

The Wild ‘n Wacky Wednesday divisions were also on hand, with Dave Yardley and Zac Thomas scoring the respective Super X-Car and X-Car wins. Dylan Izzo won in the night’s INEX Legend Cars feature.

Rocco was back in victory lane in SK Modified action for the first time since May 3 with an impressive performance. After a false start by the front row on the initial green flag, Shawn Thibeault got the jump over Jeff Gallup on the second try to start the 35-lap race. Gallup settled into second and Rob Janovic Jr. third. The first yellow flag flew when Craig Lutz took a hard hit into the front stretch wall on lap two battling for a spot among the top-five cars.

Thibeault resumed his pace out front after the restart, pulling away from the pack. Janovic got past Gallup’s inside to take second and behind that, Tyler Chadwick, Keith Rocco and Ted Christiopher were each on the move, arriving in the top-five cars by lap seven. Rocco found room to Chadwick’s inside in turn one on lap-10 and quickly moved in on Janovic.

Rocco pressed him for second, finally using the outside lane to wrestle second away on lap 13. Before another lap could be completed, Morgillo was stopped on the high side of the track in turn two, returning the race to caution.

Rocco restarted outside of Thibeault and stayed even with him for two laps, hanging on after the two cars made contact in turn three on lap 15 before driving away. Once in front, Rocco comfortably led Thibeault who continued to run a strong second place. Chadwick and Christopher each got by Janovic’s outside and ran nose to tail for several laps battling for third position.

That battle ended with Chadwick turned around in turn one on lap 29 to bring out a yellow flag, with Christopher penalized to the rear for overaggressive driving.

Rocco was masterful over three late race restarts, the final over Ed Puleo who climbed to second, cruising to his third victory of the year. Rocco’’s win was the 88th of his Speedbowl career and helped pad his lead in the championship standings. Puleo finished second for the second straight week and Janovic got past Thibeault in the closing laps to finish third. Thibeault and Kyle James rounded out the top-five.