43rd Annual Spring Sizzler




Spring is here, at least according to the calender, and that means that racing season at Stafford Motor Speedway is just around the corner.  If you have followed my blog at all in the past, you’ll remember that I used to do a Youtube show every week called The Inside Line with Kurt Vail. It was a lot of fun and we got to meet a lot of the local drivers in the process.  The 43rd annual Spring Sizzler is coming up April 25, 26,and 27. I’ve attached an old video interviewing Woody Pitkat below for your viewing pleasure.

Kurt-Vail-Ad-2- As most of you from this area know, racing has always been a big deal in Stafford and after years of covering it all across the state and nationally for the Hartford Courant, Stafford’s own Shawn Courchesne started his own racing website and blog called RaceDayCT.com. If you are a race fan you have to check it out. I, recently, started advertising with him, and want to thank him for all his help. Hit this link to check out his kind words in welcoming me to the RaceDayCT family—-> Kurt’s AD.

Spring Sizzler 2012, Great Weekend for Locals

Kyle Casagrande in Victory Lane

The 41st Annual Spring Sizzler is in the books and it was a great weekend for local drivers with at least 1 driver from Stafford finishing in the top ten in all six feature events. Many were on hand this cool and windy weekend at Stafford Motor Speedway, including my children and I, to witness the “Greatest Race in the History of Spring”. On Saturday, Stafford natives Kyle Casagrande (pictured above) and Albert Saunders finished first and second in the Dare Stock feature. Cory Casagrande placed second and David Arute fourth in the Limited Late Model race and Bob Charland finished sixth in the SK Light feature.

On Sunday, Woody Pitkat made his way through traffic to finish ninth after getting tied up in a crash midway through the SK Modified race. Woody also had to pass many cars en route to a second place finish in the Late Model feature after starting deep in the field. J.J. Hill looked strong as well finishing ninth. In the final race of the day, the 200 lap Modified Tour feature, Woody finished with an impressive eighth place finish. He started 20th and made it up to as high as fifth. Overall, it was a great weekend for our local Stafford drivers. Make sure to visit Stafford Speedway this Friday night, it’s only $17.50 for adults and $5 for children 6 to 14. See you there.

A Big Weekend @ New Hampshire Motor Speedway


This weekend the Nascar Sprint Cup series comes to New England for the first

#28 Woody Pitkat

of two trips to New Hampshire Motor Speedway. It is jam packed full of action. Saturday, Stafford’s Woody Pitkat will be taking on Sprint Cup driver Ryan Newman and the rest of the talented Whelan Modified Tour drivers in the F.W. Webb 100 at 1:10pm.

Woody is not the only local driver racing this weekend in Loudon, Stafford’s Charles Lewandoski will be driving the #40 Nationwide series car in the New England 200. Charles is having a great rookie season and he gives Stafford Springs some props in this interview he did with NASCAR.com below. Check it out.

#40 Charles Lewandoski

Charles Lewandoski interview                        

Remember there is also a full slate of action this weekend at our very own Stafford Motor Speedway. Check out all the local drivers tonight, Woody Pitkat, Ryan Posocco, Magnum Mike Bennett, Albert and Cliff Saunders, Kyle Casagrande, Cory Casagrande, Austin Bessette,  J.J. Hill, Tommy Butler, Harry Wheeler, Bob Charland, the up-and-coming Shayne Prucker, and many more. $15 for adults, $5 for kids, children under 5 FREE! See you there.

Inside Line (Darlington)

Bobby Santos III

An exciting weekend of racing concluded with Bobby Santos III winning the 40th Annual Spring Sizzler at Stafford Motor Speedway last Sunday. It came down to the wire as he edged out #93 Rowan Pennick. Stafford’s Woody Pitkat finished with an impressive top-ten finish. Ryan Preece won the SK Modified feature and Keith Rocco (Kid Rock) won the Late Model race. Saturday’s winners were Joey Cipriano in the SK Light, George Nocera in the Limited Late Models, and young Kyle Casagrande of Stafford took home the Dare Stock trophy. Another Stafford resident had a very impressive showing as #09 Chris Matthews finished second in th SK feature with a very impressive pass of all-time great Ted Christopher. Look for him to have a great season.

Kyle Casagrande

It was beautiful weather and great racing. The action will pick up again this Friday as its the opening night for all five series. Tickets are $15 for adults and $5 for kids.

Last week there were 19 winners in ” Pick the Winners” contest, Kyle Casagrande not only won his race on Saturday but he was the only person to pick three winners last week. Congrats to all the winners. To see if you won be sure to watch the video below. It contains action from last weekend as well as picks from around Stafford.  

Inside Line No. 64 gets Decals


I got a chance to goto to “Magnum’s Hut” before the decals were put on Michael Bennett’s 2011 Late Model number 64. It was very interesting to watch the process, fellow driver Woody Pitkat put on all the decals. Wait until you see the difference. Thanks again to my cameraman Noah Vail for all his help. Michael also talks about his move up to the SK Modified division at Stafford Motor Speedway this year. Watch the video below for all the details. Do not forget the 40th Annual Spring Sizzler at the Stafford Motor Speedway is this weekend, April 30 and May 1st. Go root on all the local drivers, see you this weekend. Watch out for my Inside Line video and contest coming out later this week.

Local Driver Video

Michael Bennett #64

I threw together a quick video featuring our local Stafford Springs drivers. Check it out, see if you know anyone.

2010 Late Model Champion

Remember racing is an expensive sport, if you are a

2010 Cory Casagrande

business owner please consider sponsoring one of these guys, it’s a great way to be involved and you get awesome advertising to boot. Don’t forget to get your tickets to the Spring Sizzler at Stafford Speedway April 29th through May 1st. And if you would like to save money on your auto insurance call my cell @ (860)458-9366 or at the Paradiso Insurance office @ (860)684-5270. Watch out for next week’s video and survey.

Inside Line with Kurt Vail week 3

Jeff Gordon winner in Phoenix

Congrats to Stafford’s own Charles Lewandoski, the Polish Rocket, for an impressive 21st place finish in Phoenix last weekend. Stay abreast of all of Chalew’s racing stats here on my blog as we follow his career in the Nationwide series. Congratulations to my daughter Hannah who filled out the survey last week and was the only one to pick the winner, Jeff Gordon. Fill out the survey this week and win a gift certificate to Express Wireless and Rockville Lanes, hit this link now—>Vegas Race Poll .

This week Rick Casagrande was gracious enough to invite me up to Casagrande Motorsports to check out there new Limited Late Model car that will be racing at Stafford Motor Speedway this season. I caught up with Cory Casagrande while I was up there and he answered a few questions for me. I also stopped by Bosco’s Market & Deli to get a sponsor’s perspective on things. Local business owners should seriously consider sponsoring a local driver here in Stafford. Please watch the video below and hit this link and tell me who’s going to win this weekend—–> Vegas Race Poll .

2011 Daytona 500 Challenge

This year marks the tenth anniversary of the tragic crash the killed legendary NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt Sr. I’m sure they will be showing lots of old clips and pay tribute to him all day on Sunday. The Intimidator changed the sport and helped bring it to the level of popularity it is today.

This is our first addition of Coach Vail’s click-your-pick NASCAR and that name is bad so please fill out the survey, and give me a good suggestion for a title for this ongoing competition. Here’s the link—>2011 Daytona 500 <—– just click on that and it will bring you right to the quick survey. We will be doing this every week before every race so stay tuned. Also, once the local racing scene takes flight, we will be covering Stafford Speedway as well as sptolighting local drivers! Please check out our first NASCAR Sprint Cup video shot around Stafford, Woody Pitkat’s  father, Big Wood, was in it as well as an appearance of my very own mother. Make sure you watch it! Remember Basil’s Restaurant in Stafford will be having drink specials and half price appetizers during the race Sunday. Start Your Engines

NFL Championship Weekend

Congrats to Greg for winning last week’s Coach Vail’s click your picks! This week we have NFL Championship Weekend and a lot of disappointed Patriot fans I’m sure. Make sure to go do click your picks and pick the Steelers!  Jets @ Steelers and Packers @ Bears, pick the two winners and get a ten dollar gift card to Express Wireless! It’s that easy.

Kate and I drove around West Stafford to make our video this week, and got everyone’s thoughts on this weekend’s games. I want to thank everyone from Judy’s Country Store, Express Wireless, and Basil’s Restaurant for participating. We were fortunite enough to find local Whelan Modified Driver Woody Pitkat dining at Basil’s for lunch and he gave us his picks! Goto Coach Vail’s click your picks now! Always remember it never costs anything to try to save money on your insurance, call me now at Paradiso Insurance to save money today! Goto myStaffordSprings.com  and check out this awesome new website devoted to everything Stafford! Subscribe to my blog in the column on the left for email updates of new posts.