WINCHESTER, N.H. – Mini Stock super star Gordon Farnum blasted to his fifth win of the summer Saturday at Monadnock Speedway. Tyler Leary won his fourth 2022 Modified victory, and Kenny Thompson made it three on the year in the Street Stocks.
And then there were the Zilinski brothers.
With stock car racing often a family affair, it’s not uncommon to see siblings racing at high levels on any given Saturday night. Just this year, Monadnock crowds have watched Justin and Cole Littlewood carry the checkers, been wowed by the Curtis twins, the Wenzel brothers, the Sontags and the Robinsons.
But in what was a first on the high banks, the Zilinskis, Owen and Zach, both won feature races Saturday night, earning victory laps in two different divisions.
Three-time 2022 Pure Stock winner Kyle Robinson Newell appeared to have the field covered again Saturday, but Lady Luck had other plans. Robinson Newell took the lead from rookie upstart Zach Zilinski on lap three and quickly opened a comfortable lead over the swarming field.
His car suddenly fell way off the pace, on lap 14, and though he would stay on the track, his dash for victory was done. His demise was the 15-year-old Zilinski’s good fortune, as he then reclaimed the top spot and held strong the last 11 laps to lead Chris Davis and JD Stockwell in a blanket finish for his first career victory, just a few weeks after graduating from Young Gun action, where he’d scored two victories earlier this season.
Stockwell, already a two-time winner at the same age as Zilinski, ended the night in sole possession of the championship points lead, four markers ahead of Davis, with Robinson Newell third as minus-eight.
Tyler Leary, who threepeated back in May, scored his fourth NHSTRA Modified victory of the summer Saturday.
An aborted original start ended Nate Wenzel’s night quickly, sending the Granby, Mass. pilot’s potent ride hard into the turn one wall. Once the race was officially underway, Leary took charge and simply drove away. Two-time winner Ben Byrne was strong in second, finishing ten markers behind Leary in the points parade, and Aaron Fellows was third.
Matt Nelson, a four-cylinder racer 15 summers ago at Monadnock, made his Modified debut Saturday. Nelson, who now lives far, far away in Taiwan, was fifth in the 30-lap main.
Kenny Thompson, who won Street Stock feature races here in both May and June, added a July score to his resume Saturday. Starting up front, the Alstead hot shoe led all the way, with fellow two-time winner Keith Johnson draped all over him every lap.
Streeter points leader Tim Wenzel, gunning to fill the championship shoes vacated by his brother Nate, was third on the night, and Hillary Renaud, still racing with a broken right arm, fourth. Former dirt tracker Colby Kokosa rounded out the top five.
In what’s become almost another day at the office, Gordon Farnum – an 11-time Mini Stock winner a summer ago – scored his fifth win of the summer Saturday night. Taking the lead from Kevin Clayton on lap five, he then led the rest of the way.
Clayton didn’t go away though, finishing at Farnum’s bumper, with Cameron Sontag third and 2021 champ Louie Maher fourth.
In the first feature race of the night, Owen Zilinski, still two days shy of his 12th birthday, set the stage for his older brother’s later heroics, leading the final 11 laps of the Young Gun feature to score his fourth win of the summer.
Early leader Markus O’Neil was second, with Addison Brooks, who’ll enter eighth grade in September, impressing in third.
Steve Miller Jr., billed as the Gangster of Love at his hometrack in Claremont, scored his first career Monadnock victory Saturday in the Six Shooter feature. John Voorhees was second and Claremont kingpin Steve Miller Sr. third.
George Helliwell, who also competes on a regular basis in the NHSTRA Modifieds, topped the 30-lap New England Dwarf Car feature. It was his second victory of the year at Monadnock.
Doug Dawkins was second in the Dwarfs, and Alan Robidas third. Duane Skofield couldn’t deal with success Saturday, twice jingling out of the top three.
Monadnock Speedway will be silent next Saturday, July 16, as the high-banked speedplant pauses for its annual Summer Break weekend after 11 successful events. It will return to action on July 23, when the NEMA Midgets and NEMA Lites come to town to compete in the annual Iron Mike Memorial.
MONADNOCK SPEEDWAY JULY 9 TOP PERFORMERS
STREET STOCK: Kenny Thompson, Keith Johnson, Tim Wenzel, Hillary Renaud, Colby Kokosa, Nate Nunez, Isabella Michella, Dan Robinson.
MINI STOCK: Gordon Farnum, Kevin Clayton, Cameron Sontag, Louie Maher, Jeff Asselin, Jeff Heath, Kevin McKnight, Chris Sontag, Deion Russell, Tim Griffith.
PURE STOCK: Zach Zilinski, Chris Davis, JD Stockwell, Eddie Petruskevicius, Billy Graham, Chris Chambers, Kyle Robinson Newell, Damien Houle, Zach Phillips, Dominick Stafford.
NHSTRA MODIFIED: Tyler Leary, Ben Byrne, Aaron Fellows, Scott MacMichael, Matt Nelson, Eric LeClair, Nate Wenzel.
YOUNG GUN: Owen Zilinski, Markus O’Neil, Addison Brooks, Jamielynn Flannery, Aaliyah Tacy, Hunter Duquette.
SIX SHOOTER: Steve Miller Jr., John Voorhees, Steve Miller Sr., Bucky Thibodeau.