Rick Lanagan And Scott Cook To Team Up In Late Model Division At Stafford In 2020

Scott Cook (left) and Rick Lanagan (right) (Photo: Cook – Shawn Courchesne/RaceDayCT; Lanagan – Driscoll MotorSports Photography/Stafford Speedway)

With the COVID-19 global pandemic sending the world into shutdown, those in the realm of short track racing are eager to get the action back on track and start the 2020 season. 

For Rick Lanagan, the wait probably feels a little longer than for many others. 

Lanagan has been waiting 13 years to get back into a full-time ride at Stafford Motor Speedway, and now the opportunity is there. 

Longtime Stafford Speedway competitor Scott Cook will step away from competition and put Lanagan in his Late Model ride for the 2020 season at Stafford. 

“I love running Late Models,” said Lanagan, who last ran full-time at Stafford in a Limited Late Model in 2007. “Scott and I were going back and forth talking about things last year. He wasn’t sure if he was going to drive, he wasn’t sure what he was going to do. We didn’t touch base much over the winter and then he called me up a few weeks ago and we talked about it. I put together some sponsorship and we put the deal together.” 

The 51-year old Cook has been racing locally between Stafford, Thompson Speedway and the New London-Waterford Speedbowl since 1991. He won a Limited Sportsman championship at Thompson in 2001. He has one career Late Model win at Stafford and two career Sportsman wins at the Speedbowl. 

Cook made two Late Model division starts at Stafford in 2019, but his season was cut short when he was involved in a motor vehicle accident on May 17 while towing to an event at Stafford. He was hit head-on when a car crossed over into his lane on Route 32 in Eagleville. He sustained a severe concussion and doctors told him that because of his history of concussions he should take a year off from any rigorous physical activity. 

“I’m pretty much done now,” Cook said of his thoughts of racing again. Cook, who played high school and college football and has long coached football, said his history of concussions from football and racing is too long to risk continuing in the sport. 

Lanagan has 14 career victories at Stafford including two Late Model wins in 2005. He also has four Street Stock wins (formerly DARE Stock) and eight victories in the Limited Late Model division. He raced a limited schedule in the Late Model division in 2014 and 2015. 

Lanagan said he will have sponsorship in 2020 from Erasable Images, ECO Blast, JMD Chassis, RAD Automachine, E&J Enterprises, Championship Detailing, Miller Oil Company, Garrett’s Carpentry, Overland Drive Shaft, Angel’s Graphics, Christo’s Pizza, Northeast Race Cars & Parts and Air Gas. 

“We picked up six new sponsors and now we have 12 sponsors,” Cook said. “That’s the most I’ve ever had on a car. Rick really stepped up. … Rick and I get along great. He’s come down to the shop and everything is going smooth. He’s come up with sponsorship and things that I’ve asked. We always ran clean with one another and we always had a good relationship off the track. It’s going to be fun.” 

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  1. Scott and his family are good people. Wish them the best moving forward with Rick this season, whenever that may be.

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