First Look At Early Entries For 50th Running Of NAPA Spring Sizzler At Stafford Speedway

(Press release from Stafford Speedway)

It may only be December but over 15 teams have already registered to compete in the 50th running of the NAPA Auto Parts Spring Sizzler scheduled for April 23 and 24, 2022. A mix of Stafford regulars and Stafford invaders highlight the early entries including 2021 Spring Sizzler winner Patrick Emerling and 2015 Spring Sizzler winner and hometown hero Woody Pitkat. 

The first official entry received for the Spring Sizzler was Woodstock, CT’s Buddy Charette, with 2021 Open Modified winners Chase Dowling and Mike Christopher also registered. Other past Open Modified winners Tommy Barrett, Eric Goodale, Marcello Rufrano, and Chris Pasteryak all have registered their teams to compete in the 50th Spring Sizzler.

The 50th running of the Spring Sizzler is slated to be the biggest Modified event ever held at Stafford Speedway with over $130,000 in prize money on the line. The winner of Sizzler is guaranteed to win $15,000 but could go home with winnings in excess of $30,000 after bonuses and lap money. Race fans can support the Spring Sizzler by sponsoring a lap, all lap sponsors will receive a Limited Edition 50th Spring Sizzler poster.  

Race fans are encouraged to stay tuned to and Stafford Speedway’s social media accounts as more entries are received. Click here for the current entry-list for the 50th Spring Sizzler.

Race teams expecting to compete in the 2022 Spring Sizzler can register for the event online at Early entries will be featured on Stafford Speedway’s social media channels through the road to the Sizzler video series. 

Take a quick look at the 17 early entries for the Spring Sizzler:

Andy Jankowiak – #0 Steve Park’s Batteries & Bulbs Chevrolet – Jankowiak will be looking to make his Sizzler debut.  Jankowiak is a regular winner on the Race of Champions Modified Tour as well as the Indoor Auto Racing Championship Series, where he is the defending Series champion and 2-time defending champion of the Atlantic City indoor event.

Patrick Emerling – #1 Superior Refinishing Chevrolet – Emerling is the defending champion of the NAPA Spring Sizzler, which is thus far his only Stafford victory.  Emerling ran 3 open races in 2020 with the #1 team owned by Ted Anderson with a best finish of 3rd.

Tommy Barrett, Jr. – #4nh Xtreme Auto Body & Collision Center, LLC. Chevrolet – Barrett has 14 SK Light feature wins at Stafford from 2010-2011, 3 Modified Racing Series victories, and he won the very first open modified race held at Stafford, the Twisted Tea 80 back in 2018.  

Driver T-B-A – #6 Mertz Racing Chevrolet – Although the driver for Stan Mertz’s #6 car is still to be determined, Mertz’s car won the Twisted Tea 80 in 2020 and finished second in the 2021 Bud Light 80 with Woody Pitkat behind the wheel.

Michael Christopher, Jr. – #7 Baldwin Motorsports Chevrolet – Christopher drove Tommy Baldwin’s #7ny car to NAPA Victory Lane in the CBYD 81 held this past May and finished second in the Lincoln Tech 80 in August.  Christopher also finished second in the NAPA 100 in August 2020 at Stafford and he has 9 career SK Modified® wins and counting with a career best 4 wins in 2021.

Chase Dowling – #9ct S & S Asphalt Paving Chevrolet – Dowling has been the man to beat at Stafford since hooking up with Ben Dodge and the #9ct team.  Dowling won the Tri-Track Modified Series CBYD 81 race in October 2020 and then won the Twisted Tea 80 and Bud Light 80 in 2021.  Dowling also has a Modified Racing Series win in 2019, 9 SK Modified® wins, and 7 SK Light wins in his Stafford career.

Cory DiMatteo – #11 Hummel Brothers Hot Dogs Chevrolet – DiMatteo won the 2017 SK Light championship at Stafford with 4 wins and he won his first SK Modified® feature in July 2020.  DiMatteo also has 7 Legend Cars wins racing around Stafford’s mini-mile.

Tyler Barry – #21 Xtreme Auto Body & Collision Center, LLC. Chevrolet – Barry just completed his rookie season in Stafford’s SK Light division, where he claimed Rookie of the Year honors with 1 win, 4 top-5, and 10 top-10 finishes.

Mikey Flynn – #24 Place Motors Chevrolet – Flynn raced SK Lights from 2017-2019 before moving up to the SK Modified® division in 2020.  Flynn made his open modified debut at Stafford in the Bud Light 80 this past July and finished 18th.  Flynn is still in search of his first modified win at Stafford.

Buddy Charette – #28 Polar Beverages Chevrolet – Charette is a relative newcomer to Stafford, having only run 5 SK Light races during the 2020 season.  Charette moved up to open modified competition in 2021 with a best finish of second place in the Thompson 300.

Anthony Sesely – #44 Kluth Motorsports Chevrolet – Sesely is a multi-time feature winner and former track champion at Wall Stadium as well as being a multi-time winner of the Atlantic City Gambler’s Classic indoor race.  Sesely has made 2 career NAPA Spring Sizzler starts with a best finish of 15th in 2008.

Marcello Rufrano – #48 Wheelers Auto Service Chevrolet – Rufrano won his very first modified race at Stafford in the SK Light division in 2016 and he has since won 11 SK Light races and the 2018 SK Light Championship to go along with 2 Street Stock victories.  Rufrano won the Bud Light Open 80 in 2020 and is looking for his second open modified win.

Teddy Hodgdon – #55 Montanari Fuel Chevrolet – Hodgdon is the 2019 SK Light track champion at Stafford and he has 6 career SK Light feature wins.  Hodgdon was the 2020 SK Modified® Rookie of the Year at Stafford and he is still looking for his first SK Modified® win.

Eric Goodale – #58 GAF Roofing Chevrolet – The Whelen Modified Tour veteran was the runner-up in the 2021 NAPA Spring Sizzler on April 30 and he has 2 career wins at Stafford; the 2017 NAPA Fall Final and the 2018 Bud Light Open 80.

Chris Pasteryak – #75 Dawley’s Custom and Collision Chevrolet – Pasteryak is a former 2-time Modified Racing Series champion with 2 career wins at Stafford coming in 2011 and 2015.

Todd Owen – #81 Cooker Construction Chevrolet – The 2021 SK Modified® track champion at Stafford has 7 career Pro Stock and 17 career SK Modified® victories to his name.  Owen has competed in 9 of the 11 Open Modified races held at Stafford with a best finish of 2nd in 2019.

Woody Pitkat – #88 Dunleavy’s Truck and Trailer Repair Chevrolet – With 78 career wins at Stafford, Pitkat ranks second behind only Ted Christopher.  Pitkat is a former 3-time track champion at Stafford, winning Late Model titles in 2006 and 2012 and the SK Modified® championship in 2013.  Pitkat won the 2015 NAPA Spring Sizzler and he won the 2020 Twisted Tea Open 80.

For more information, visit, checkout Stafford Speedway on Facebook or Twitter, or contact the track office at 860-684-2783.


  1. Ethan Williams says

    Andy J ran the 2020 Tri Track race at Stafford for Steve Mendoza.

  2. I guess we learned a few things here. Dunleavy has picked his new number and Woody picked the 88 over Stan Mertz. I’m sure it’s the right decision but that Mertz/Pitkat crew that came together on a lower budget and turned some heads was a thing of beauty.
    Jankowiak is famous for signing up for Stafford opens then not showing up so we’ll see about that one.
    Tommy Baldwin is fired up already. Going to have a contest and unveil a throw back paint scheme for the Sizzler. That buzz you think you may be hearing is real.
    Otherwise is that not a terrifically eclectic start to a field that should have broad range of teams and drivers with different experience levels.
    Stafford has on advantage that no other track has when it comes to tour modifieds. That would be teams that came to be primarily to race in Stafford opens. In this group I’d put Ruffrano, the 11, Owen, Hodgdon and Flynn in that category.
    No restriction now against RYR spec engines and even SK’s can run. Stafford has never held such a wide open, open.

  3. SKs arent legal

  4. “Stafford Launches Lap Sponsors & Commemorative Poster For 50th NAPA Spring Sizzler; Race Purse Released
    December 7, 2021 by Shawn Courchesne

    The highest finishing SK Modified®, ROC Modified, NASCAR Modified Tour, SMART Tour, and Tri-Track Modified drivers will each receive a $500 bonus. To be eligible for the bonuses drivers must have competed in 75% of each respective series events in 2021. ”

    “rules says
    December 12, 2021 at 3:49 pm
    SKs arent legal”

    The why are they mentioning a $500 bonus?

  5. Doug,
    A number of Stafford Speedway SK Modified division regulars also typically participate in most of the Open shows with separate Tour Type Modified cars. So I would take this is a nod to those guys for committing to the double duty package.

  6. “A number of Stafford Speedway SK Modified division regulars also typically participate in most of the Open shows with separate Tour Type Modified cars. ”

    I think I get that since I just said this.
    “Stafford has on advantage that no other track has when it comes to tour modifieds. That would be teams that came to be primarily to race in Stafford opens. In this group I’d put Ruffrano, the 11, Owen, Hodgdon and Flynn in that category.”

    Help an old man out here Mr. Courchesne I’m not getting your point at all.
    The comment was made that for the Sizzler “SKs arent legal”
    Is that correct or not?

  7. Doug,
    To my knowledge, SK Modifieds are not legal for the Sizzler.

  8. Man I just want to see Stephen Masse back in a tour-type modified. Somebody wealthy please, give that man a ride. He won Tri-Track big money races before and can win big money tour-type races again.

  9. Thank you for the link and yes I know that for Stafford opens SK’s have always been excluded and for good reason being the premier regular division racing in the same event undercard.
    So I’ll ask again. Why are they mentioned with the others with regard to the special bonus if they continue to be excluded?
    “The highest finishing SK Modified®, ROC Modified, NASCAR Modified Tour, SMART Tour, and Tri-Track Modified drivers will each receive a $500 bonus. “

  10. Maybe they are referring to the highest finishing driver who is also an SK mod regular at Stafford?

  11. I sense that you cannot grasp this item. THe bonus is for the TOP FINISHING SK DRIVER. Not the car.

  12. I can’t be the only one that thought that was confusing. Lumping the SK’s in with the other tour modified categories. Nonetheless after a great deal of study and a bit of embarrassment I do in fact get it now.
    Schwew! Glad that’s over.

  13. “The highest finishing SK Modified®, ROC Modified, NASCAR Modified Tour, SMART Tour, and Tri-Track Modified drivers will each receive a $500 bonus.”

    Key words “ Modified drivers will each receive a $500 bonus”. What is there not to understand.

  14. I can’t believe that it means the top SK “driver.” Define who that would be. Let’s say Chase Dowling wins in the #9. Is he the highest finishing SK driver? And also the highest finishing Tri-Track driver? Whelen Tour driver? What, he gets an additional $1500? Doug is right, this is worded poorly.
    And Shawn, when you say, “no SK Modifieds are not leagy for the Sizzler.” the double negative means that they ARE legal, then. Or, did you mean to say, ” No. SK Modifieds are not leagy for the Sizzler.” ?

  15. I know it’s funny isn’t it? Seeing the old duffer who’s losing mental acuity by the day groping around in the dark banging into things. Why doesn’t he just open his eyes you say but there he is just continuing walk into the walls. Glad I can entertain you but now I want to get serious.
    Why aren’t the SK Light drivers eligible to get a $500 bonus? Guys like Tyler Barry and Buddy Charette who have registered and Anthony Bello who likely will be in the field of cars. You know what you could add Mark “Buckshot” Bakaj in there as well. Didn’t make the 75% cut but at 12 events he was a big part of the SK Light 2021 success story. Even better make it an SK Light/Street Stock category so Frank L’Etoile,Jr can be in the mix as well.
    Sure they’ll be giving Rocco or Owen or Williams a wad off cash to cover the expense of a few tires or some ROC guy who didn’t even race at Stafford in 2021 but the SK Light guys who have to climb a steeper hill get the bit fat nothin muffin.
    Tell you what we have here its ugly but true and you know what I’m talking about. That’s right anti crate bias. The poor teams in the SK Light division that week in and week out have the strongest fields and provide some of the best racing that race for peanuts and now this slap in the face. It’s just not right.
    Join me in raising your voice to right this wrong. End anti crate bias and get the top finishing SK Light/Street Stock driver the $500 bonus. Whomever that is will surely have earned it every bit as much as those over exposed, pampered SK drivers that get all the attention and gobble up the lions share of the purse money.

  16. Perhaps an “SK driver” will be defined as a driver entered in the Sizzler weekend SK event??

  17. These would be following drivers that qualify for an opportunity at the $500 SK Modified Driver Bonus. They competed in at least 15 of the 20 SK Modified events (75%) held at Stafford Motor Speedway in 2021. The highest finishing driver in the 100 Lap Open Modified Spring Sizzler will get the SK Modified Driver Bonus. *Filed an Entry

    Todd Owen*
    Mike Christopher Jr*
    Stephen Kopcik
    Tyler Hines
    Keith Rocco
    Michael Gervais
    David Arute
    Andrew Molleur*
    Marcello Rufrano*
    Noah Korner
    Doug Meservey Jr
    Bryan Narducci
    Teddy Hodgdon*
    Matt Vassar
    Jonathan Puleo
    Mikey Flynn*
    Daniel Wesson
    Dylan Kopec

  18. Doug, call Stafford up and post the bonus. Im sure they’d take your money

  19. “Doug, call Stafford up and post the bonus. Im sure they’d take your money”

    You’re making sport of me of course with the tried and true counter challenge when a person tries to spend others money that for a fact I’m guilty of. A tactic that’s a bit thread bare but always effective.
    Having some off season fun was my intent as well as drawing attention to the fact that there are SK Light and the Street Stock driver in the field of cars. Anthony Bello is now registered as I thought he might so there is a total of 4 cars so far that could quality for the SK Light/Street Stock portion of the $500 bonus were there to be one.
    No I can’t say I will be calling up Stafford to pledge $500 for an additional bonus but I am trying to be productive otherwise. While you were taking 10 seconds or so to cast your gem upon the waters of the RaceDayCt forum I was busy updating my list of tour modified teams based on the now 24 registered entrants to the Sizzler.

    Car #, Team Owner, Location, Driver(s), Series Participation, (Chassis/Engine Builder)

    0-David Gill, NY, Andy Jankowiak, Stafford, ???, (David Gill/John Betts Race Engines)
    00-Jimmy Paige, Bonsignor, TTOMS
    01, Kenneth Fifield, Sanbornville, NH, Melissa Fifield, NWMT, (Fury/Spec)
    06-Les Hinkley, Windsor Locks, Ct, Les Hinkley, TTOMS, (?/?)
    06-Randy Rameau, Westminster, MA, Sam Rameau, NWMT, TTOMS,(?/?)
    07-Jennifer Emerling, Orchard Park, NY, Patrick Emerling, NWMT, Riverhead, (LFR/Spec)
    1-Ted Anderson, Waterbury, Ct, Patrick Emerling, Stafford, Thompson, (Fury/Bob Bruneau)
    2-Frank L’Etoile, SR, Whethersfield, Ct, Frank L’Etoile, Jr, Stafford, TTOMS, (Troyer/Bob Bruneau)
    3-Matt Galko, Moodus, Ct, Matt Galko, Stafford, (Troyer/Pettit)
    3-BRE, East Freetown, MA , ????, TTOMS, NWMT, Thompson, (BRE Chassis/Bob Bruneau)
    4x-Michele Davini, NH, Nick Anglace, Stafford. (SPAFCO/Billy the Kid)
    4- Michele Davini, NH, Tommy Barrett, TJ Bleau, Tyler Barry, TTOMS, Stafford, (LFR/Pettit)
    4-Gallup Racing, Agawam, MA, Jeff Gallup, Stafford, TTOMS, NWMT, (LFR/Bob Bruneau)
    6-Mertz, Whitinsville, MA, Matt Galko, TTOMS, Stafford, MRS, (Troyer/Billy the Kid)
    6ny-Partridge, Long Island, NY, Ryan Preece, Everything, (Fury/Pettit, Spec)
    6x- James Byrne Jr, ?, Russ Hersey, TTOMS, (?/?)
    7-Ron Vigeant, MA, Kurt Vigeant, TTOMS,
    7ny-TBR, , Long Island, NY, Christopher, Blewett, Everything, (PSR/Bob Bruneau, Spec)
    8-Earl Paules, Palmerton, PA, , Earl Paules, Stafford, (SPAFCO/Bob Bruneau)
    9-Ben Dodge, Ct, Dowling, Stafford, TTOMS, Thompson,NWMT, (LFR/Billy the Kid)
    11-John Hummel, Farmington, Ct, , Cory DiMatteo, Stafford, (Raceworks/Bob Bruneau)
    14-Barney, Jackson, NJ, Blake Barney, TTOMS, Turkey Derby, (?/?)
    16-Haydt-Yannone Racing, PA, Silk, TTOMS, Thompson,
    18-Larry Westgate, ?, Max Zachem, TTOMS. (?/?)
    21-Michele Davini, NH, Tyler Barry, Stafford, (SPAFCO/Pettit)
    24-Neil Flynn, Hampden, MA, Mikey Flynn, Stafford, (SPAFCO/Pettit)
    25-Gary Casella, , Saugus, MA, Williams, Cipriano, TTOMS, Stafford, Thompson,MRS, (Troyer/Pettit)
    25Ct, Dave Ethridge, East Hampton, Ct, Stafford, TTOMS, MRS, (SPAFCO/Billy the Kid)
    25NH- Robie Motorsports, NH, Brian Robie, TTOMS,( ?/?)
    27-Kevin Iannarelli, ? , Kevin Iannarelli , TTOMS, (?/?)
    27MA- Douglas Robbie, MA, Derek Robbie, TTOMS, (?/?)
    28- Bumper to Bumper Racing, Cape Cod, MA, Buddy Charette, Thompson 300, Stafford, (LFR/Spec)
    31-Glen Korner, Canton, Ct, Noah Korner, Stafford, Thompson, TTOMS, (Troyer/Pettit)
    33-KRR, Wallingford Ct, , Michael Gervais, Stafford, ( Troyer/Pettit)
    34-Dave Etheridge, Portland, Ct, Etheridge, Stafford, Thompson, (SPAFCO/Billy the Kid)
    34- Nicole Fortin, , Holtsville, NY, JB Fortin , NWMT, (Troyer-Performance Technology)
    35-Mike Moeller, Shelton Ct, Andrew Moeller, Stafford, TTOMS, Thompson, (TFR/Spec)
    44MA, -Lawney Tinio, , Franklin, MA, Bobby Santos, NWMT, TTOMS,Stafford, Thompson, (TFR/Billy the Kid)
    44-Kluth Motorsports, Matawan, NJ, Anthony Sesely, TTOMS, Stafford, Turkey Derby, (2 Kwik Chassis/Performance Technology)
    48-John & Maina Ruffrano, North Haven, Ct, Marcello Ruffrano, Stafford, (LFR/Pettit)
    50-Ronnie Williams, Ellington, Ct, Ronnie Williams, NWMT, Stafford, (Troyer/Pettit. Spec)
    50C-Bob Horn, ?, Joey Cipriano, TTOMS, (?/?)
    51-Ken Massa Motorsports, Milford, Ct, Justin Bonsignor, NWMT, Thompson and Islp 300’s, (Fury/Spec)
    52, Jason Nogiec, Ct, Mark Bakaj, Stafford, (Troyer/Spec)
    54-David Catalano, Ontario, NY, Tommy Catalano, NWMT, Riverhead, Thompson, (LFR/Spec)
    55- Ed Bagot, Ct, , Robert Bloxsom, Stafford, (Troyer/Ford)
    55- Pete Matton & Chris Garcia, Danbury, CT, Teddy Hodgdon, (Troyer/Pettit)
    57-Mark Pane, Berlin, Ct, Keith Rocco, Stafford, Thompson, (Troyer/Pettit)
    58-Goodie Motorsports, Riverhead, NY, Eric Goodale, Islip 300, Stafford, Thompson, NWMT, (Troyer/Billy the Kid, Spec)
    59-Jody Lauzon, NY, Andy Jankowiak, NWMT, (?/?)
    60-Matt Hirschman, Northampton, PA, Matt Hirschman, NWMT, TTOMS, SMART, ROC, (Troyer/Pettit)
    66-Jerry Solomito, Islip, NY, Timmy Solomito, Riverhead, NWMT, (LFR/Spec)
    66-Austin Kochenash, PA, Austin Kochenash, TTOMS, (?/?)
    73- Andy Jankowiak, Tonawanda, NY, Andy Jankowiak, TTOMS, (?/?)
    75-CCP Racing, Moosup, Ct, , Chris Pasteryak, TTOMS, NWMT, Stafford, Thompson, (LFR/Bob Bruneau)
    76-John Manafort, Farmington, Ct, Dana DiMatteo, Stafford, TTOMS, (Troyer/?)
    76-Norman Perry, ?, Kirk Alexander, TTOMS, MRS, (?/?)
    79-John Jensen, Ct, Bello, Stafford, (Troyer/TA)
    79- Tim & Sheryll Lepine, McKennedy, MA, TTOMS, Thompson,( LFR/Bob Bruneau)
    81-Todd Owen, Somers, Ct, Todd Owen, Stafford, ( Chassis Pro/RAD)
    82-Danny Watts, Long Island, NY, Craig Lutz, NWMT, Islip 300, (LFR/Spec)
    82-Rob Murphy, ?, Rob Murphy, TTOMS, (?/?)
    88-Doug Dunleavy, Brookfield,Ct, Woody Pitkat, Stafford, NWMT, (LFR/Spec)
    92-Anthony Nocella, Woburn, MA, Anthony Nocella, Everything, (?/?)
    99-Sam Kramer, MA, Richard Savary, TTOMS, Thompson, (?/?)
    179 John Jensen, Ct, Stephen Kopcik, Stafford, Thompson, (Troyer/TA)

    It’s a work in progress and should easily double over the coming months. No it won’t be perfectly accurate nor am I sure what value it will have over the coming season. Nonetheless it does recognize the owners of tour cars who contribute so much to our entertainment and will provide an approximate idea of how large the tour modified team population is.

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