Some of Seekonk Speedway’s best NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Racing Series competitors will be switching their cars to a new set of rules to compete in the inaugural Bay State Classic on Wednesday, July 28. Seekonk’s weekly competitors normally run without bump stops in their front shocks, per the Seekonk rules. However, for the invading Pro All Star Series $10,000 to win special, bump stops are allowed, and all drivers will be switching over to be as competitive as possible in their efforts to defend the home turf.
Multiple former Seekonk champions are planning to compete in the race — some of them with title background in the Pro Stocks, and others in other Seekonk divisions. David Darling, a seven-time Seekonk Pro Stock champion who has victories in five of the first seven weekly races of the season, will be a major force in the 150-lap special. Darling is a former Pro All Star Series winner at Seekonk back in 2011, showing he can defeat the incoming invaders. His weekly championship experience and domination should make him a major force.
Other former champions from the Pro Stock division planning to compete include Tom Scully Jr. and Fred Astle Jr. Both of these competitors know their way around the third-mile well — with Scully winning countless special events in the past. Scully is also a former PASS winner at Seekonk in 2009 — and won the inaugural US Pro Stock National Championship event, another $10,000 special. Astle is a multiple-time Pro Stock champion who has taken a month off from weekly action to prepare himself for the showdown.
Don’t count out two other drivers who join Astle in the Everett’s Auto Parts (Brockton) stable: Dylan Estrella and Ryan Kuhn of East Bridgewater. Both are former Seekonk Late Model champions, and Estrella is a Pro Stock winner. Even though Estrella hasn’t won yet on the weekly side this season, a transfer back to bump stops, where all his Pro Stock wins have come, could be the factor to get him back to the checkered flag.
Kuhn is no stranger to the PASS Series — competing with them on a part-time basis this season while also running weekly at Seekonk. He currently sits second in the weekly Pro Stock points, and he’s hoping all of his racing experience will help him be a contender.
“I’m really excited to be racing for the $10,000 check at Seekonk,” Kuhn said. “I think the home-track advantage won’t be a huge benefit, with our weekly rules packages being a bit different. But luckily for us, we have ventured out and run some PASS races and that gives us a little bit bigger of a notebook.”
Add former Late Model champions and Pro Stock winners Mike Brightman and Ryan Vanasse right into the thick of the fight as well. Brightman won his last Pro Stock race in 2019, like Vanasse, and will be driving a car out of the Danny Cabral racing stable. Vanasse, who has also taken some time off from the weekly action to prepare for the mid-week showdown, will be looking to capture the big check.
Two more drivers with Seekonk experience are also scheduled to compete: Derek Gluchacki and Jake Johnson. Gluchacki is a former Legends Cars and Late Model winner at Seekonk, while Johnson is a former Pro Stock winner and Legends Cars champion. Both of these young rising stars are going to be threats to take home the big check at the end of the night.
Look for some other potential Seekonk stars to compete. Will Ryan Lineham drive the Richard Sprague prepared No. 10 in the 150-lap feature? Will Rick Martin, who has 98 career Seekonk wins, take the No. 14 to the field and try to grab another checkered flag? Will Bobby Pelland III, who is no stranger to touring with Pro Stocks and a former Seekonk Late Model champion, compete and be a factor in the final laps? Anyone else?
The INEX Legends Cars, which run weekly at Seekonk on Fast Friday, will join the show for a 30-lap special, along with the PASS Modifieds, set for 50 laps. The Legends Cars race will not be a Seekonk championship points event, but will count towards INEX points.
The pits will open on race day at 2 p.m., with front grandstand gates opening to the public at 4 p.m., just in time for the first practice of the day. Qualifying heat races will begin at 6:30 p.m. Advance tickets are available at seekonktickets.net and will also be available at the track.