STAFFORD – On Oct. 16, 2011 at Thompson Speedway, Glen Reen had a night for the ages, pulling off one of the biggest underdog makes good stories in the history of the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour when he won the division’s season finale.
Friday at Stafford Motor Speedway, the Wilbraham, Mass. driver put together another evening of racing to rival the drama of that night at Thompson.
Reen got behind the of his SK Modified Friday night at Stafford Motor Speedway riding the emotion of making history for himself only moments before in winning his first career Late Model feature at the historic half-mile oval.
When the checkered flag flew for the SK Modified feature it was Reen celebrating history for himself and an accomplishment thought to be unmatched in track history.
Reen, of Wilbraham, came from the 22nd starting spot to win the 40-lap NASCAR Whelen All-American Series SK Modified feature Friday at Stafford.
It was the first career SK Modified victory for Reen, who is thought to be the first driver in track history to score his first career victory in two different weekly divisions on the same night.
Jeff Baral of Southington was second and Woody Pitkat of Stafford third. Rowan Pennink of Huntingdon Valley, Pa. finished eighth to clinch his second consecutive SK Modified championship with one event remaining this season.
Reen’s story Friday was remarkable in multiple layers. It was his first start in the SK Modified division since blowing a motor in his car in May. He also became the first driver in history to win in an SK Light Modified, an SK Modified and a NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour car. And Reen pulled off the feat in the same car.
“This was awesome,” Reen said. “I never thought for starting 22nd, – I knew we’d be fast. The car was good. We were second in practice last week. Unfortunately we blew a motor in May. Come last week and broke a valve on lap seven of practice. I just put the motor together. We fixed the valve this week and I was just like ‘I hope this works.’”
And it work it did. Reen was up to sixth for a lap 22 restart. Then leader Ronnie Williams seemed to miss a shift on the restart, backing up the inside lane and allowing Baral to go to the lead. But it was Reen who saw the lane under Baral and grabbed the top spot off of turn two.
From there Reen left the field deep behind, rolling away easily to the checkered.
“I think [Williams] missed a shift or something like that and I just saw a hole and I went for it,” Reen said. “The car was so good I could put it anywhere I wanted. If I wanted to go outside or inside, it didn’t matter. Once I saw the hole open I was like ‘This is it.’ As soon as I got there I just had a feeling. I was like ‘This is going to be the night I do a double. I was already on cloud nine from the Late Model. I was like ‘There’s no way. This is going to be unbelievable.’ I don’t know how far it was to second place. I never looked in the mirror once.”