Feels Like The First Time: Eric Berndt Ends Winless Streak With SK Modified Win At Stafford

Eric Berndt celebrates victory in the SK Modified feature Friday at Stafford Speedway (Photo: Fran Lawlor)

STAFFORD – On Sept. 24, 2000 Eric Berndt scored his first career SK Modified victory at Stafford Motor Speedway.

Friday the 39-year old felt like a young kid doing it all over again.

That’s what a nearly two year winless streak made the Cromwell driver feel like.

Berndt held off the charges of Ronnie Williams in a feisty battle over the closing laps to win the 40-lap NASCAR Whelen All-American Series SK Modified feature Friday at Stafford Motor Speedway.

It was Berndt’s 18th career SK Modified victory at Stafford, but first since Aug. 19, 2016.

“It’s tough,” Berndt said. “It’s almost like grabbing your first win again. It seems to happen up here to pretty much almost anybody. You go that one year thinking ‘Can we get back to victory lane?’ … Hopefully it rolls into more.”

Williams, of Tolland, was second and Todd Owen of Somers third. Williams had won the previous two SK Modified events at Stafford.

Berndt went by Tyler Hines for second on lap 14 and then got by Owen for the lead four laps later.

On lap 26 Williams was able to get under Berndt for the lead. Berndt fought back to regain the top spot on lap 31. The race was marred by multiple cautions that necessitated four attempts at restarts on lap 32.

Williams got back to the lead on lap 34 but two laps later Berndt regained the lead off of turn four and never trailed again.

“We had a pretty hard battle going with Ronnie,” Berndt said. “We both swapped the lead quite a few times. What a great race it was with him. This time we came out on the top. Great car. Got to the front when we needed to and everything seemed to work out.”

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Comments

  1. Congratulations to ERIC and the #66 team. The bulldogs back

  2. Ray Skoglund says:

    Glad for Eric and Cos, and team
    All great guys.
    Keep up the good work.

  3. It was like two different races. Berndt and Williams putting on a show of excellence in the front and absolute chaos on the back end. A war of attrition. A blood bath. For a while it looked like there wouldn’t be 13 cars left for the shootout. Maybe someone else can say if Williams backed out of his last turn pass attempt when it got a little dicey. Did I see that? If he did that would have been a classy move. Reen channeled vintage 1980’s TC in the feature. Jingles, spins, multiple times in “Reen Acres” and doggedly rallying back to qualify for the Shootout. Then winning. I love that guy. But I’ll bet a lot don’t.

  4. Doug I’m guessing not a lot of other drivers are Reen fans , but hey I don’t think Teddy let that bother him, just saying I’m definitely not comparing the two

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