Mike Stefanik Wins 37th Season Opener at the
New Riverside Park Speedway

1986

The largest crowd in the history of Riverside Park Speedway witnessed the first event of the NASCAR Winston Racing Series at the Brand New Riverside Park Speedway in Agawam, Mass.

A record-breaking field of Modifieds and street stocks were in attendance for the Eagle snacks 100-lap race.

John Rosati of Agawam started on the pole and led the first seventy-five laps of the Modified feature in the Southwick Motors Pontiac.  A lapped car became the deciding factor forcing Rosati out of the groove, loosing his impressive lead to Mike Stefanik of Greenwich, R.I.  Stefanik driving the Clint Hanks owned, Fred Felton built Cavalier, held on to the lead until lap 92, when Dick Houlihan spun in water off turn four.

Additional challenges came in the early laps from Reggie Ruggiero driving the Greci Cavalier, but a mechanical problem forced him out early.


Mike Stefanik (Dave Pardi Photo)

Additional challenges came in the early laps from Reggie Ruggiero driving the Greci Cavalier, but a mechanical problem forced him out early.

Stan Greger with the Febbreillo/Norgaard Oldsmobile and Bob Polverari in the West Hartford Tool & Die Plymouth turned in other impressive runs. Both finished second and third. Fourth went to John Rosati and fifth was S.J. Evonsion, driving the Diamond Construction Cavalier. Rounding out the top ten were Jack Lecuyer, Jeff Fuller, Dick Houlihan and Alan McClure. Wayne Anderson, Polverari, Lecuyer and Dan Avery won the Modified heats.
 


Mike Stefanik wheels the Cliff Hanks #37
(Howie Hodge Photo)

Mike Stefanik was quick to thank Clint Hanks and Fred Felton. “This car stuck like glue. This new track is going to be real fast. Count on the outside to get hooked up, then look out.” It was the 37th season of racing at Riverside and car number 37 won.

In the Street Stocks, Steve Kelly of Granby, Ct. won his first feature driving the Ron’s Auto Body Monty Carlo. Luke Scanlon led the first five laps as Kelly took the lead and held on through several cautions. Dan Delena finished a strong second, with Dan Burnham in for third. Fourth and fifth went to Luke Scanlon and Dan Lavoie. Sixth through tenth went to Tim Barrett, Tom Tagg, John Lobo and Rob Jones.

Kelly thanked his family and friends for the victory. “This new track is great, I can run high, low or anywhere. I want the Championship.” Dan Delena, Tom Tagg, Gary Fiormonti and Time Barrett won Street Stock heats.