Stafford Speedway To Host 13-Lap SK Mod Shootout July 13th In Honor Of Ted Christopher

(Press Release from Stafford Speedway)

Drivers of the SK Modified division at Stafford Speedway hold a No. 13 flag during the number retirement ceremony last October at the track (Photo: Fran Lawlor)

The Stafford Speedway management is proud to announce a new addition to the Friday, July 13th race program, a 13-lap SK Modified® Shootout in honor of the late Ted Christopher.

The shootout, dubbed the “TC 13,” will occur directly following the regularly scheduled 40-lap feature.

The field for the TC 13 will be filled by the top 13 finishers in the 40-lap feature and inverted with the 13th place finisher starting on the pole for the TC 13 shootout.

The TC 13 race will pay $1,300 to win with the full purse based on sponsor contributions. George Bierce has already committed $500 towards this unique event. The goal is to post a $6000 purse.

“When we realized that July 13th was a Friday, we knew we had to do something special,” explained Stafford Speedway General Manager Mark Arute. “We will run the full 40 lap SK Modified® race, take the top 13 finishers, line them up and run a 13 lap shootout. No pitting, no adjustments, just 13 laps for the TC Trophy and $1,300.”

The TC 13 event will accompany an already packed night of racing including the second Open Modified 80 of the the 2018 season boasting $3,500 to win. The Inaugural Open Modified 80 held on June 8th was won by former SK Light driver Tommy Barrett using a pit early and hang on strategy. Chase Dowling and Dave Etheridge completed the podium with impressive runs.

“Talk about the show of the summer. We’ll have our full weekly program, an 80 lap open modified race, and the additional 13 lap SK Modified® Shootout,” continued Arute. “Teddy would have loved this show. Another 13 laps to thrill the fans and pocket $1,300.”

SK Modified® drivers are already looking forward to this unique event for both the prestige of winning the race and for the extra payout.

“That’s pretty neat that Stafford Speedway is doing this race for Teddy,” said Chase Dowling, driver of the #36 Powerhouse Motorsports SK Modified®. “Losing Teddy didn’t just affect the drivers, it was the fans and everyone who loves short track racing. I’m sure all the drivers who race at Stafford that looked up to Teddy are going to want to win that race in his honor. The extra purse money will be a big help and not only the money but the recognition of winning that race in Teddy’s memory would be a pretty cool accomplishment.”

“That’s great for the racers and the Christopher family,” said Keith Rocco, driver of the #88 Wheelers Auto SK Modified® and current SK Modified® points leader. “It’s great that Team Stafford is putting this purse up for us and it’s always nice to be racing for more money with more laps.”

Free Play Unmuffled Quickcast: Raw Emotions With Mike Christopher Jr. & Mike Christopher Sr.

In addition to the scheduled 40-lap SK Modified® feature and the TC 13 Shoot Out, Friday, July 13th will be a busy night of racing. Round 2 of the Modified Open 80’s will accompany Stafford’s Late Models, SK Lights, Limited Late Models, and Street Stocks. Tickets for this event are priced at $30.00 for adult general admission tickets, $5.00 for children ages 6-14, and children ages 5 and under are admitted free of charge when accompanied by an adult. Reserved seat tickets are $32.00 for all ages. All ticket prices include 10% CT Admission Tax. Stafford Motor Speedway offers plenty of free parking along with overnight parking available for self contained Recreational Vehicles.

For more information, contact the Stafford Motor Speedway track office at 860-684-2783 or visit us on the web at


  1. Bob Maguire says

    That is good, BUT how about doing twin 13 features, 1,300 to win each.

  2. What an awesome idea, and great way to remember TC. I like the idea of running it after the feature with the top 13 finishers lining up to run 13 laps no putting, and no adjustments. Wonder if they’ll invert the field.

  3. Field will be inverted as stated in third paragraph

  4. Some people don’t understand what they just red

  5. My bad. Next question : think there might be some sandbagging in the 40 lap feature for a chance to win the TC Trophy, and $1300?

  6. Another question. Might someone running the open race bring an SK to try and get in on the action?

  7. Yeah, everyone is going to try to finish 13th in the 40 lapper.


  8. Crazy in NY says

    wmass, is worth 30 US now?

  9. Darreal, wasn’t saying sandbag to finish 13 the, but maybe like 8th or 9th, would make it worth it if they won the bonus race.

  10. Rob, I get it. I was wondering the same thing. The race between 13 and 14 could turn out to be interesting. It’s only 13 laps, so they are going to want to start close to the front, not many laps to make a charge to the front.

  11. wmass01013 says

    Crazy while I respect the the memory of TC but adding a 13 lap SHOOTOUT for Sk’s while all great promotional and classy ideas does not make me say wowwwwwwww now I have to go so my answer is still NO! Again NOT trying to rain on anybody else who wants to be there and enjoy it! IF 10 or more Quality teams entered the OPEN, I would say yes.

  12. I’m going since I enjoyed the first and as an SK fan first this can only be viewed as a good thing with all the maneuvering that it could entail. But the skeptic in me sees this a a tell that wmass may be correct. Stafford may have feedback from the teams that indicates that the car count may deteriorate and quality weaken. Hence this to perk up interest and make the show more compelling. I wish they had beefed up the modified purse to build the brand but if they saw a problem playing to the local SK audience is smart as well. This and the modified show clearly are worth an additional $11.50.

  13. This show has a conflict with the Valenti Modified series which runs at Lee the same night. The Valenti series racers made up a good portion of the field for the first Open 80. I would expect there would be less cars at this stafford open then the last one. All accounts said the first open 80 was a good race but I would skeptical about this one.

    While I believe this is a nice tribute to Ted Christopher, I dont think this is enough to get me to go to this show. I will be honest with you, I havent been going to Stafford near as much as I used to. I was not a huge Ted Christopher supporter but always enjoyed watching him race and he was a competitive car usually causing controversy. The two shows I did go to I thought something was missing and did not find it as entertaining as I had in the past. I will say the two races I did go to, the Spring Sizzler and Dunleavy night ran too long. I am not sure you need to run heat races for divisions that have less than 15 cars and if there is a less than 15 car field why cant they run them last. That way if the show is going long you have the choice to leave early having seen the main division. I do love the SK’s and would argue they put on the best racing in NE including tours but think Stafford price increase from last year has been an issue with me. I tried to justify it that they raised the purses for the drivers but at the end of the day I just dont think its worth it. The two shows I went to I found myself bored during large portions of the show. Now you can say don’t go, they dont need me and I will agree one or two paid admissions isnt going to move the needle but I have been going to Stafford since the late 90’s, been a season ticket holder and would rearrange my personal schedule to ensure I could get there on a Friday. Now I am looking for something else to do most Friday nights and will go to “the Show” occasionally. I will say I am pissed I missed Mikey’s first SK win last week and will probably go this week just because. We will see if Stafford can win me over or if I take another month off.

  14. The VMRS runs on July 13 too, so where are they going to run: VMRS or the Stafford 80? The first Stafford Open 80 was effectively an outlaw MRS event. Would have to think the couple top cars on the VMRS will go to Lee to chase points.

    What other cars could show up? Whatever happens, both events will have light car counts. Can’t be in two places at the same time. If no VMRS cars show up at the Stafford 80, there’s no show.

  15. Man I totally can relate to being bored now at regular shows for a portion of the program. Love the Streets and the two gals competing for the top spots. But those LM and LLM races are a problem. They do have some good racing but it just doesn’t have the pizzazz with the low car counts.. Big fields in the Lights and SK’s are just so much more interesting especially with the competitive racing. That’s why I love the Opens because they are heat limited and then wall to wall features.
    Ok so this will be interesting with competing shows on the 13th. Who from the VMRS will show up if anyone. Common sense would tell you Pennink, Pitkat, Savory, Gallup and Goodale at the least would be in Lee. But most signed up for the July Open when they knew of the conflict so what to make of that. On the other side of the ledger 7 teams from the last one that signed up didn’t show up so will some appear in July? Also figure in whether the VMRS is a points loyal series or more of a casual race when available. Where does the money paid and the track configuration enter into the equation and each teams reckoning or where they can do better. How about geography and travel time. Interesting. The field should be down but it will be interesting once again just to see who does and does not appear. I mean really if Pennink and Pitkat blow off Lee that would be a head turner.

  16. The top of the field for the next Stafford Open should be OK, as I’d expect Stafford regulars Rocco, Dowling and Pennink to run, plus Barrett. I suppose Pennink could go to Lee, as he’s not on top of Stafford’s SK points. But, in the past, I believe he’s made Stafford’s SK races a very high priority. Pitkat is questionable, as he may be chasing the VMRS points title at Lee. Nocella, Savery and Willis are likely Lee runners. I read elsewhere that Stafford decided to exclude the NASCAR Spec engine from its Open races, as it didn’t want to break the seals in tech (forcing the teams to pay $$ for resealing, etc.). The MTS and New Smyrna seemed to welcome the Spec engine, and I’m surprised Stafford is not doing the same.

  17. Rafter fan, I agree with you concerning Woody. Just look at this weekend, he’s skipping the NWMT race to run the VMRS race, I think he’ll do the same and run the VMRS race at Lee, rather than run Stafford As far as engines go, deciding to ban the NWMT Sec engine was a bad move, allot of teams only have spec engines, so they won’t show up

  18. Was excluding the spec a bad move? I’m not so sure. Having a few teams blow in and dominate might have chased more teams away. The Riverhead open had 17 cars with huge first place money and Preece in the 6 won it. As if turned out, at Stafford Barrett was a wild card winning, Dowling a Stafford favorite second and Etheridge a VMRS guy was third. A very nice mixed podium indeed. For my money excluding the spec was a good move.

  19. wmass01013 says

    Motors aside, you hear one of the reasons TEAMS do not run the WMT is cost, licenses, safety needed on car, pit uniforms, helmets, so STAFFORD has a chance to bring in teams from anywhere to RUN Stafford and my opinion didn’t do much purse or Rules wise to bring in teams to experience the Track

  20. Obviously by now wmass it’s clear we are seeing the one Open in the books so far from different perspectives. I’d like to think of this as a work in progress that will be interesting to see develop if it does as all. The 13 lapper may have ominous reasons for being introduced or it could be solid value added. Looking ahead it will be interesting to see if it stays on the schedule, replaces one or more of the VMRS or is discontinued altogether. We’ll also see if they change the rules to include spec engines and increase the purse or make the 13 lap SK deal a regular event. They’re experimenting and it’s interesting to watch.
    What is clear is they targeted an audience that pretty much excludes the travelers. Those that are avid fans and go the extra distance to see NWMT and TTOMS races with their spec engine dominated teams. They concentrated on we local SK fans, summer area vacationers and infrequent summer entertainment seekers not necessarily race fans. At least that’s how I see it.
    I loved the first one and am sure the second with the new event will be even better even if the Open field slumps a bit. We’ll see if others feel the same way and how things shake out. In any event schedule watching next fall should be very interesting.

  21. Speaking of the NWMT I have a completely unrelated question. Is that cost thing still a valid issue as far as participation goes? Clearly I’m not a devoted follower of the NWMT but it seems like this year it is as strong as it’s been in a long time. The field is just loaded with talent with the top ten very strong teams and mostly full fields for Northeast races. Crowds at least around here are strong. Seems like this year there should be close to zero complaints with the possible exception of ticket prices. $30-$40 up here and around $17 in Langley.What’s up with that?

  22. If Stafford made weight or gear adjustments for cars that run a SPEC engine, those cars would not dominate. Again, I’m surprised Stafford has chosen not to do so.

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