Stafford Notes: Fearn Family Dominant In Late Models, Limited Late Models; Bryan Narducci Tops SK Light Mods

Tom Fearn (left) and Alexandra Fearn (right) celebrate victories Friday at Stafford Speedway (Photos: Jim DuPont/RaceDayCT)

STAFFORD – Two divisions, two weeks, one name. 

For the second consecutive week at Stafford Motor Speedway there was one name dominating victory lane at the track for both the Late Model and Limited Late Model divisions. 

They are the first family of fenders at Stafford Speedway. 

Last week at Stafford it was Ryan Fearn winning the Late Model feature and his sister Alexandra Fearn winning the Limited Late Model feature. 

The domination of the East Longmeadow, Mass. family rolled on Friday. 

Tom Fearn, cousin of Alexandra and Ryan, scored his eighth victory of the season in the 30-lap Late Model feature Friday at Stafford. And it was Alexandra Fearn scoring her second consecutive win and fourth win overall in 2019 in the 15-lap Limited Late Model feature. 

“It goes to show what goes into this,” Tom Fearn said of the domination of the Fearn Motorsports team, which is owned by Stu Fearn, father of Alexandra and Ryan. “… Getting the right people in the right places and just building a team. A lot of people don’t see that part of it. Having the right partners and the financing to be able to do it. Stu is pretty smart when it comes to a lot of the setups. Between him and I we can bounce things around on setups and try things and usually I can give him pretty good feedback. And if it’s something that works it trickles down to Ryan and Alexandra. Whatever we can do to help each other and make each other go better. … It’s good to see Ryan and Alexandra also have success. We’ll just keep doing what we’re doing and hopefully make it better as we go along.” 

Michael Wray of Northford was second in the Late Model feature and Tyler Leary of Hatfield, Mass. third. 

Tom Fearn went by Michael Bennett on lap 10 and then set sail to cutting into a huge lead for Wray. 

On lap 24 Tom Fearn got under Wray for the lead and drove away to victory. 

“At first I didn’t think I was catching him, the first five laps and then I was like ‘I think he’s getting bigger,’” Tom Fearn said. “That’s a good thing. Then once I got there I got under him in [turns] one and two there and he was a gentleman letting me in. He knew I was faster than him, no need to fight with five to go or whatever.” 

Said Wray: “I knew he was back there and I was just trying to get out as far as I could because I knew he’d be coming. I just tightened up too much to hold him off. I’m happy to at least come home second.” 

Tom Fearn said he wanted to add a special thank you to Tom Howard for his support.

Alexandra Fearn held on through some late race challenges from Gary Patnode and Duane Provost. 

“I was looking in my mirror because I was real nervous,” Alexandra Fearn said. “Patnode was behind me for a while and I know he’s fast. So I was trying to be defensive but also not block anyone. So just being mindful of who’s behind me and also mindful of hitting my marks, but it’s hard to focus on what you’re doing when you’re worried about everyone else. And I think that’s a common mistake for a lot of people. So I kind of fell out of my tree for a bit, but I knew what I had to do to get it back together and create a safe gap so I could secure the win.” 

Provost, of Palmer, Mass., was second and Jeremy Lavoie of Windsor Locks third. 

“It does feel really nice to get back into winning form,” Alexandra Fearn said. “We went a couple weeks where we had a couple wreck, stuff like that. I’m just really thankful to be here. It’s the little stuff that adds up. The team does a great job in the shop every single week going through the car, finding stuff we can make better, finding stuff that would make us faster. It pays off, it really does. It all adds up.” 

Bryan Narducci celebrates his seventh victory of the season in the SK Light Modified feature Friday at Stafford (Photo: Jim DuPont/RaceDayCT)

Bryan Narducci went by Alexander Pearl for the lead on lap 14 and then held off the charges of Steven Chapman over the closing laps to win the 20-lap SK Light Modified feature.

It was the second consecutive win for Narducci, of Colchester and his seventh victory overall in 2019.

“Two weeks in a row,” Narducci said. “It’s pretty nice to be able to add another win sticker to the car.”

Chapman, of Ellington, was second and Teddy Hodgdon IV of Danbury third.

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  1. Congrats to the Fearn Motorsports team for wins in both Late Model and Limited Late Model. Maybe Tom should spot the field half a lap and make things interesting. Keep up the great work. Preparation pays.

  2. I’m willing to bet if Stafford took on the ACT rules for the late models it would be an entirely different story at stafford

  3. What are the major differences between Stafford rules and ACT rules?

  4. In the SK lites just have a quick question how is it that Sami Anderson and Amanda West the two main reasons for major wreck weeks ago have started either on the pole or top 4 for like 4 weeks in a row?? Everyone else who has started up front with lack luster results like them has been sent back to like 15 to 20 yet ever since woman’s night these two have remained in the front two rows just don’t understand????

  5. Dave, the handicap system was modified 25 or so years ago to only allow ONLY the top 18 in points to be handicapped come feature time. Heat race time everyone is handicapped equally. At the time it had a few pros but in my opinion has many cons. It is tough to follow for sure. Now if you are just bashing Sam and Amanda, they are there every week and have established themselves in the top 18 in points. Amanda has had 2 top tens and a top five the last three weeks which had her starting fourth behind Ferrigno and Matthews last night.

  6. It’s called handicapping, finish in the back, start up front. Nothing to do with woman’s night.

  7. Here is the scoop, with the 01 First a parable – if you walk by your neighbors house and his dog comes out and bites you your a FOOL if you walk by the next day and keep walking by day after day knowing the dog is gonna do the same thing! Then you complain to your neighbor that the dog keeps biting you day after day you complain! ,,,, but NEVER do anything about it!!!! Do any of you SK light drivers get it? Everyone of you know the 01 is CHEATING!!!! All you do is complain to one another and you do nothing and the dog keeps biting you!! The dog Warden Arute lets the dog bite you and does NOTHING !!!! SHAME ON YOU Arute!!!!! Please dont say you checked his motor you sent it to the guy who built it, what a JOKE!! When Keith won 6 in a row Arute you stopped it and said something and the car was never the same that year! Your golden boy gets away with it and nothing is said!!! You get ONE tire a week in that division EVERYONES car has a bad week not your dogs car!!!1 Sk light drivers it’s time you do something about it ( unless your FOULS , DO NOT SHOW UP FOR 2 WEEKS and let there be a 2 car race the fans will do the rest! Dog Warden has your money so that does not hurt him but……… the fans come to see Modified’s no Mods no FANS! Get some Nuts and bolts!

  8. While any time a contributor utilizes a parable or even says parable in a comment my hats off.
    I’d suggest that if the conclusion is an empty claim of cheating that indicts the entire chain of command at a track you might have been better off showing anything that could remotely be considered proof.
    What I did was take the fast laps in the last 4 features for the 01, Chapman and Hodgdon and average them. Narducci came in at 19.91, Chapman at 20.05 and Hodgdon at 19.88.
    Before doing the numbers I too wondered at why the 01 never seems to have a bad night in terms of speed given the tire rule. Turns out the other front runners don’t suffer that much either.
    Do I think Narducci is a bastion of good judgement in his racing choices…….certainly not. But given the engine test and the tire issue they are looking hard at as well as the comparable speeds I’ve shown I just don;t think casting aspersions on the management at Stafford is called for unless you come up with something real.

  9. The Racedayct forum is a great place to throw some controversial notions out there and get slapped down when you’re off base. Here’s one I invite any one to slap me down on.
    A beef I’ve had with Stafford is their handicapping system and I’ll say at the outset it’s based on nothing more then the absence of information.
    My view a handicapping system should be a simple computer algorithm where you plug in the data and based on the parameters set the positions are spit out. It could be released so virtually anyone with a laptop could confirm the starting order and avoid comments on the chicks in the SK Light feature.
    OK so releasing the handicapping system is a can or worms that would cause all kinds of problems with second guessing were it available on line. On the other hand I believe Stafford does have an arcane system that is based mostly on results but leaves a high degree of flexibility to make subjective judgement’s. That in my view should not be made at all in a correct handicapping system.
    So I took The Scoop to task for bringing a noodle to a knife fight and now I’ve done exactly the same thing.

  10. What was the deal with the 11 taking out Fuller in the Dare Stock Feature? That guy should be suspended for at least a week

  11. you sound like a real cuckoo

  12. But what about that fuller girl starting on the poll twice in a row and winning both times when it states in the rules that you can not start better than 5th after a win

  13. Maybe the 01 is just set up every week perfectly ,it has been in tech over 35 times in 2 1/2 years that’s amazing Maybe with Feedback from 200+ races in 2 years CHASSIS PRO has helps, Plus Todd ,his crew 30 years plus of knowledge, knowledge the key you know,Maybe the other competitors need a better set up or set up person ,Maybe Brian is just better. Maybe some of the other competitors should have Todd setup there car or someone that knows something about ups Maybe Bryan will be the next star you will be watching 5 or 10 years from now .No one passes more cars ,he is Exciting to watch just look around when he races people Lose the minds they going crazy he puts the show on ,like
    Keith, Tom Fern, Ronnie Williams, Doug Coby, Justin B, like any other front runner does Maybe we just Hate a winner

  14. The 01 pretty consistently gets accused of cheating and someone has leveled an accusation at the 82 SK team as well. One team that seems to escape accusations is the Fearn’s 92. You’d think based on results if any team could attract some kind of motor irregularity complaint it would be them.
    To be clear I’m not suggesting that at all. What I am suggesting is that there isn’t enough fan passion with regard to the Late Models to level a good old fashioned cheating accusation their way. Tom Fearn wins again, a yawn and on to next week or next season where he’s likely he’ll dominate again.
    When is the absence of a baseless cheating complaint a bad thing? When no one really cares.

  15. In response to Andrew, there are major difference between a Stafford LM and an ACT type LM. Too multiple to list. But it would be an immense financial strain on current teams to build an ACT car.again I would refer to Stu Fearn on the subject

  16. First fuller didn’t start # 1 two week in a row , you have to finish in the top 5 in your heat to be handicapped for the feature Ben mentions that after ever heat run down, and if you don’t show up for a week your handicapped with a a win , those were old dare rules when you couldn’t start better than 5th after a win , I bet most competitors have their starting spot figured out before they get to track , if they thought something shady was going on they would be lined up at tech shack .not that hard to figure out

  17. Sharpie Fan says

    Dear Doug,
    The current handicap system was instituted by Tom Fox and is based on a system used out in the Midwest by sprint cars, I believe. It is not super difficult if you have some advanced knowledge of spreadsheets and how to program formulas in them. I usually have our division’s provisional lineup done by Tuesday night once the penalties have been posted. Then it’s just a matter of seeing which cars in the top 18 showed up and qualified in the heats and applying that to the lineup that you have already calculated. That will give you the top 15 or so cars in the lineup to be followed by the cars that qualified but are not in the top 18 in points to be followed by all of the other cars in order as they finished in their heats. Simple, right?
    Not sure if the point system that is used (which is different than the driver’s points) is posted in the rule book but I do know that it used to be posted on the bulletin board in the pits.

  18. getserious says

    Well, that was as clear as mud. Thick mud.

  19. The problem is I’m not as smart as you Sharpie Fan.
    I’m somehow reassured though that folks such as yourself have a handle on it and are comfortable with the system.

  20. The handicap system was not instituted by Tom Fox. They’ve been using this system for the past 30 years. It is based on the driver’s last 3 finishes, and to be handicapped you must finish in a qualified spot in your heat race. If you miss a week it counts as a win toward your handicap. Once handicapping starts (4th race), you can estimate your starting position vased on last 3 weeks results. But if a handicapped car doesn’t advance through the heat races, the lineups change

  21. Sharpie Fan says

    Correct, there has been a handicap system at least since Big John used to be the handicapper at Stafford. I was told that the current point values were brought in by Tom Fox. And a miss counts as 1.5 wins. If a handicapped driver does not qualify, the order of the handicapped cars in the feature lineup does not get rearranged (except if the driver has a win, then cannot start in front 4). They just get removed from the top spots and everybody else moves up one.

    It’s not simple, but it’s not rocket science either. It’s just math and the accuracy of the person inputting the data as regards to penalties.

  22. It’s obvious that if you have a win you can start further up than 4th , I’m going with rob

  23. Sharpie Fan says

    Not in the feature. You “can” mathematically, but it is against the rules as far as the posted lineup is concerned. That doesn’t mean the stars can’t all align and someone in the front four choose to drop to the rear at the last minute due to mechanical issues or gets penalized for missing the drivers meeting, then everybody just moves up.

  24. OK I’ve read all the responses on the handicapping system, appreciate your use of Excel Sharpie Fan to create a spread sheet providing the positions but still have to ask why? Why can’t there be a calculator published right on the Stafford web site or any other tracks site for that matter . You just plug in the numbers weekly, it rolls over every three weeks, you input the heat results and voila……..starting positions.
    No suspicion, no confusion, complete and total transparency with the only wild card being the accuracy of the data input. Yes I know, never happening. However if handicapping is a completely objective process there is no reason in this day and age you couldn’t follow right along in the stands with a smart phone.
    That brings me back to my original point. While it is mostly an objective calculation it is not completely without some discretion that tracks reserve for themselves seeing as how they are the promoters after all.

  25. Sharpie Fan says

    Good question. However, since I work on one of the teams I will refrain from commenting on that. lol

  26. Here are the handicap values that I got from the bulletin board in the Stafford pits.

    1 157143
    2 114286
    3 75000
    4 57143
    5 42857
    6 39286
    7 35714
    8 32143
    9 28571
    10 26429
    11 24286
    12 22143
    13 20000
    14 18571
    15 17143
    16 16714
    17 16286
    18 15857
    19 15429
    20 15000
    21 14571
    22 14143
    23 13714
    24 13286
    25 12857
    26 12429
    27 12000
    28 11571
    29 11143
    30 10714
    31 10286
    32 9857
    33 9429
    34 9000
    35 8571
    36 8143
    37 7714
    38 7286
    39 6857
    40 6429
    Did not qualify 3000
    No Show 235715
    DQ – Rules Infraction 392858

    I know from talking with the handicapper that if a driver misses one of the previous three events that they can’t start in the first two rows in the feature thus why I think we are seeing feature winners starting so far up front. I think it’s also tough when there are only 6-8 cars that are showing up consistently every week in the Limited and Street Stock fields and many of those are feature winners or those who could start up front are electing to start in the rear.

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