Comeback Kid: Eric Berndt Rallies For Second SK Modified Win Of 2019 At Stafford

Eric Berndt celebrates victory in the SK Modified feature Friday at Stafford Speedway (Photo: Jim DuPont/RaceDayCT)

STAFFORD – For a long time at Stafford Speedway the story proved much the same for most drivers after watching Keith Rocco drive by them for the lead. 

Time to fight for second. 

Friday night Eric Berndt of Cromwell wrote a different story. 

Berndt rallied back to the front after losing the lead to Rocco and won the 40-lap NASCAR Whelen All-American Series SK Modified feature.

Rocco, of Wallingford, was second and Glen Reen of Wilbraham, Mass. third. 

Rocco went by Berndt for the lead on lap 23. 

“I figured I was running for second then,” Berndt said. 

But Berndt stayed on Rocco’s bumper and two laps after losing the lead he went back to the front. 

“I was surprised,” Berndt said. “When he got by me I was waiting for him to pull a little bit and he didn’t and I was able to close up and make a move on him. I knew it was going to be a 10-lap battle.” 

Said Rocco: “He had me covered tonight.” 

It was the second victory of the season for Berndt, who won on May 11. 

“It feels great,” Berndt said. “That’s usually not our forte up here usually. It seems like we come on in the July-August area. To grab two now is definitely great. If we could just get some consistency over the next two weeks because that seems to be our downfall right now. We got a good podium then we fall off and finish 15th.” 

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  1. Congrats to Eric and his family and team. A great job by a clean but still aggressive driver. Also a great job by Keith in a clean and entertaining battle for the win.

  2. Great run for Eric and the whole Coz crew. The battle for the lead between the 54,88,6,03 was great to watch.

  3. OK I think I get it. The Fying Farmer DJ Burnham who’s logged 3 stellar finishes you’d think would be handicapped better then 24 but I guess the heat race finish ended that possibility. Anyway this very un-noticed driver and team that has been crushing it after taking about a year off moved up 14 spots to finish in 10th. I’m not going to run the numbers but me thinkst he’s passed more cars then anyone else in the 4 races he’s run since the return. I don’t pretend to understand Stafford’s arcane handicap system but I’m lobbying for a starting heat position in two weeks better then 8th. Next week no heats so he’ll get the best starting position this season now being in 17th place in the points.That’s 17th place after missing on race and starting at the tale end of the field in every race.
    Did Stafford learn it’s lesson. I won’t say the shows are ending early because that would imply something is wrong. They’re ending at perfect times in my view.

  4. I think I heard Glen Reen thank Mike O’Sullivan (among others) for a fast car on Friday night. So, Mike O. is no longer associated with the 82/Christopher team? Or, is he working on both the 17 and 82 teams? Shawn?

  5. Rafter,
    You heard correct. Mike O’Sullivan parted ways with the Mike Christopher Jr. team following the 2018 season.

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