Upon Further Review: Doug Coby, Not Keith Rocco, Credited With SK Mod Win Saturday At Waterford

WATERFORD – It was a story that seemed to good to be true.

Injured Keith Rocco gets credit for a win at the Waterford Speedbowl after relief driver Doug Coby wheels his car from the back of the field to a victory following a driver change.

But a seemingly perfect evening for Rocco ended in a cloud of controversy early Sunday morning when track officials declared that Rocco could not be credited with the victory in the event.

Instead, Coby was declared the winner of the race. It means Rocco doesn’t earn track points for the division or points toward the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series national standings.

Rocco, of Wallingford, sustained a dislocated left wrist and fractured radial bone in a practice crash at Thompson International Speedway last Sunday. He had surgery on the arm Friday and was sporting a nearly arm length cast on Saturday.

The plan on Saturday was for Rocco to start the race and Coby to relieve him behind the wheel after the first caution of the race.

On the first lap of the race a multi-car incident on the backstretch brought out the caution. The problem began for Rocco right about then.

The Waterford Speedbowl rulebook states: “Driver changes are permitted after the completion of the initial green flag lap only. Points and money will be awarded to the driver that completes the initial green flag lap.”

Video evidence showed that Rocco did not come around the track to complete the initial lap, but rather went directly into the pits after the accident in front of him on the backstretch.

Rocco went to the pits and made a driver change, putting Coby in the car. When Coby came back on the track after the driver change and drove past the start finish line he was technically completing the first lap for Roco’s No. 88 SK Modified and by the rulebook is considered the driver of record in the car.

“We have to stand by the letter of the rulebook and that’s what we’re doing,” Waterford Speedbowl race director Scott Tapley said.

Said Rocco: “I was told that I had to take the green flag, I was never told I had to complete the lap. I guess if you want to figure out something right you have to do it yourself.”

Instead of extending his points lead in the division, Rocco will now fall to fourth in the standings. Tyler Chadwick, who finished third in the event, will take over the points lead with 612. Jeff Pearl moved to second with 597 and Rob Janovic Jr. to third with 595. Rocco has 578 points.

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