THOMPSON – Ryan Preece put together a busy slate of competition for Thursday night at Thompson Speedway and got it started off in perfect fashion.
Preece, of Berlin, came out on top of a heated-green-white checkered shootout with Keith Rocco to win the first 30-lap NASCAR Whelen All-American Series SK Modified feature Thursday at Thompson Speedway.
Rocco, of Wallingford, was second and Danny Cates of Chaplin third.
Preece is racing in both SK Modified features and also the 75-lap Valenti Modified Racing Series event Thursday at Thompson.
The first SK Modified feature was a completion of an event that began on May 15 but was stopped after 13 laps because of rain.
Rocco went by Woody Pitkat for the lead at the green flag resumption of the feature. Pitkat went by Rocco for the lead in turn one on lap 26, but Rocco went right back to the front half a lap later, with Preece moving to second past Pitkat.
On a lap 28 restart, Preece went by Rocco for the lead in turn three. On the next lap Rocco went low under Preece for the lead in turn three, only to have Preece take the top spot back in turn four before the caution came out to set up the green-white-checkered finish.
Preece and Rocco went side-by-side for much of the final two laps with Preece holding on at the checkered flag.
“Keith had a really good car,” Preece said. “On the [final] restart, him and I went through [turns] one and two, and we were racing side-by-side. We were just racing hard. Keith’s a great driver, he’s a great racer with a great team behind him just like I do.”