WATERFORD – With the grandstands empty, the officials off their perches and traffic beginning to pour out of the parking lot, the frontstretch at the New London-Waterford roared to life for one last bellowing gasp Saturday night.
There on the track was Rob Janovic Jr. blowing donuts in his SK Modified.
One can’t blame the veteran for not wanting the celebration to end.
Janovic snapped a two-year plus winless streak in scoring victory in Saturday’s 35-lap NASCAR Whelen All-American Series SK Modified feature at the New London-Waterford Speedbowl
“I scripted this all week,” said Janovic, of Waterford.
It was the first victory for Janovic, the 2007 SK Modified champion, since Aug. 16, 2014. It was the 23rd career victory in the division for Janovic, dating back to the 2000 season.
Joey Gada of Salem was second and Todd Owen of Somers third.
It made up for a disappointing finish for Janovic last week, who got caught up in the oil from another car.
“An awesome awesome awesome crew,” Janovic said. “We had a fast car last week. It was probably the fastest it had been all year. And I was feeling really good. We got into fifth and third and fourth were just there for the taking. Unfortunately with what happened with the oil coming out of [Dennis Perry’s] car. … Ed Puleo, my crew chief, Greg Hanner, my co-car owner John Volpe, we worked hard in the shop this week. Ed Puleo did a ton of work, we did a ton of work. We came out of the trailer fast and I had a good feeling all night.”
Brent Sweet started on the pole and held the top spot until Janovic used a restart with 22 laps remaining to go to the front for good.
“I told Brent Sweet after the driver’s meeting, I said ‘Kid you’re fast.’” Janovic said. “… I think I probably gave him too much confidence.”
With 17 laps left Gada was able to get by Sweet to take over second, with Janovic having checked out. The caution flew again with 15 laps left but Gada had nothing to keep up with Janovic over the closing stages.