STAFFORD – It was a night of rallies for Rowan Pennink behind the wheel of two separate Modifieds at Stafford Motor Speedway.
After using a late pass to regain a lost lead to win the 40-lap SK Modified feature, Pennink doubled up the move by going back to the front in the Valenti Modified Racing Series.
After losing the lead early to Woody Pitkat, Pennink used a lap 61 restart to go back by Pitkat and win the 80-lap Valenti Modified Racing Series feature Friday at Stafford Motor Speedway.
For Pennink, a multi-time series winner and former champion, it was the first victory in the division at Stafford Speedway.
“I’ve got to thank the guys with this [Gary Casella] owned team,” Pennink said. “They gave me a great car tonight. A lot of new guys on this team. They’re stepping right up to the plate and getting it done, to give me a car like that. Awesome job.”
Pitkat, of Stafford, the defending champion of the event, held on to finish second. Keith Rocco of Wallingford was third.
Pitkat went to the lead early by Pennink and then kept the field at bay as green flags rattled off until the first caution of the race flew on lap 61.
“We had to bide our time at the beginning there for a little bit and wait for when the time was right to go to the front,” Pennink said. “The guys on the team … did a great job letting me know when it was time to go and we were able to make the move.”
Following the lap 61 restart, Pennink crossed over Pitkat in turns three and four to take over the lead for good.
“I had a good run on the outside with [Pitkat],” Pennink said. “I just checked up and crossed him right over and the thing had amazing bite up off [the corner] and I was able to just drive away from him.”
Said Pitkat: “It was tough out there leading, trying to set my own pace. When to go hard and when not go hard. I tried to save some there for the end in case there was a late caution like that. After that caution when we went back green we had a left front wheel hop pretty bad and it didn’t clear out until about 15 laps into that run. By then [Pennink] was checked out.”