Chase Dowling Splits From SK Mod Owner Dan Avery At Stafford; Woody Pitkat Expected To Fill Seat

Chase Dowling (Photo: Jim DuPont/RaceDayCT)

When the 2021 season began in April at Stafford Speedway, Chase Dowling – driving for the Dan Avery owned Horsepower Hill stable – was looked at as one of the top championship contenders for the SK Modified championship at the historic facility.

After two-thirds of season of struggles the championship hopes are gone and the team’s divorce is final.

Dowling and Avery have parted ways. The team was not at the track for Friday’s North American Auto Car Senator’s Cup SK Modified 50.

Dowling confirmed he has left the team. The Dowling/Avery partnership began prior to the 2020 season when Dowling joined the Horsepower Hill stable to drive for Avery in partnership with team supporters Jean-Guy Poulin and Brigitte Poulin.

“I just want to thank [crew chief] Mike O’Sullivan, the Poulin’s, the Avery Group and all the sponsors for making the opportunity happen, but it just didn’t work out,” Dowling said.

The team struggled with consistency in 2021. Dowling had one win, five top-five’s and nine top-10’s in 13 events at Stafford this year. Through 13 events Dowling never had consecutive top-five finishes.

Dowling had two wins and five top-fives in 12 events for the team in 2020.

Avery was not immediately available for comment Saturday morning.

O’Sullivan said Woody Pitkat will be in the No. 22 Horsepower Hill car for the Aug. 20 SK Modified event at Stafford. It’s unclear how many of the final six SK Modified events at Stafford Pitkat will participate in with the team.

Dowling has won two of the three Open Modified 80 events at Stafford this season driving for team owner Ben Dodge. He will continue to run for Dodge in Tour Type Open Modified events.

Dowling is the second driver considered a pre-season championship contender to leave the division recently. The Adam Skowyra owned SK Modified team with driver Ronnie Williams did not return to competition following a one-week suspension for an altercation in the pits following a June 25 event. Williams was the 2018 and 2019 SK Modified champion at Stafford.


  1. The Atomic Punk says

    1 Win, 5 top 5s and 9 top 10s are not really driver replacement numbers IMO.

  2. Loosing William’s and Dowling from weekly SK competition stinks. They are both competitive and add drama to the show. tt will be nice to see Woody Pitkat back in the sk. How long has it been since he ran as a regular at Staffford in the sks. Any chance Dowling finds another ride for Stafford? Will woody be racing the SK next week. It might convince me to leave the safety of my basement and go to another race.

  3. Punk did you miss the part where he said he left the team , maybe it’s because he couldn’t pass on the outside,you know since 1996 , didn’t think woody wanted to race every Friday

  4. Who knows what the real reason for Dowling leaving is. I’d bet his high expectations were in play and perhaps thinking the 22 without some upgrades would not be in contention for wins. Maybe a disagreement on setup input as well you just never know. They have consistently been a tenth or so off the fastest cars. Woody the Swiss army knife of drivers won’t care. He’ll drive what he has and get the most out of what he has you can bet on that.
    Dowling probably has something cooking. Maybe a bigger commitment to dirt although he’s not even consistently breaking the top 10 at this stage. Dodge’s 9 perhaps taking in more NWMT events would be pretty cool. Or they may decide with all their success with the 9 to give the SK’s a try as well those two are thick as thieves and love victory lane. Chase is like a whack-a-mole he’ll pop up somewhere else for sure.

  5. I think I remember saying that it would be doubtful to see the #50 SK return any time soon. Looks like they might sit out the rest of the season, but you never know. As far as next season, again ???. I can say it wasn’t just 1 incident that made them decide to vacate

  6. If you had a problem with the track why would you still run the open shows , makes no sense

  7. The Atomic Punk says

    Elect you clearly either do not remember Stafford before the repave or were not even there then so….. Behave at the childrens table.

  8. “If you had a problem with the track why would you still run the open shows , makes no sense”

  9. Punk I was there when Stafford was dirt and they had small infield paved track , and they also raced motorcycles, and the coverd grandstands burnt down ,sorry I don’t remember the horse racing but I do remember when they still had horses kept in stables which one is now pit building , I just don’t understand why you keep going

  10. I remember Stafford before the repave. And I also remember most of the passes being made near where I sat. That would be turn one and the move was called the “bottom shot”. It was not called the outside shot. The worst thing the repave did was to pretty much take away the bottom shot.

  11. Elect, do remember what years (approximately) that the track was dirt and when the covered grandstands burned?

  12. Cheers, first weekly car racing started in 1947 and asphalt started in 1968 I believe , stands burned down I would say late 1950 s you can find some info on history of stafford speedway and history of Stafford spring Agricultural fair

  13. They run the opens because of that tie in with the Tri Track series, that’s based on finishes.

  14. The Chase Dowling and Ben Dodge pairing seems to work.

  15. Being a fan of the sport’s history I think you will find the stands burned down in ’54. Paved racing started in ’67. NASCAR started in ’59 – 66 on the dirt. If they were running weekly shows in ’47 , it was midgets when those guys could run 7 nights a week. No record of stock cars around here until ’48 at Cherry Park or Kingston R.I.Fairgrounds that I ever heard of or read about. Old news articles show stocks taking over weekly shows from midgets in ’49 at all operating Connecticut tracks, excedpt Danbury, and also at Riverside Parfk.

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