NWAAS: Chasing Another; Pelland Leads Seekonk Speedway Late Model Points Chase With Rose Close Behind

Kyle Souza NASCAR, New England, Northeast, Other Late Models, Stock Cars, Touring Series 0 Comments

SEEKONK, Mass. — Story by Race Chaser Online New England Correspondent Kyle Souza — Seekonk Speedway photo —

With only seven races remaining in the 2015 NASCAR Whelen All American Series Late Model season at Seekonk Speedway, the driver points championship chase is getting closer each and every week.

The last couple of weeks have seen some exciting action in the division, with a mix of rookies and veterans both running up front. Last week, it was T.J. Moreshead, a rookie contender, leading the feature for the first 23 laps. It was refreshing for fans to see someone else up front with the speed to rocket away from the field behind him.

For Bobby Pelland III, a second straight championship would mean everything. His Dad, Bobby Pelland Sr., works tirelessly in the shop each and every week, taking time off from work when needed and really puts a strong effort forth. The kid from Cranston, R.I. finds himself up front in the updated driver’s point standings, but just by six points over Charlie Rose Jr.

Pelland, the defending division champion, has also run extremely consistently this season and always seems to be one of the cars to beat. Even though he has had a few tough weeks this season to this point, he is in prime position to capitalize for the title.

“I have the best guys at Seekonk Speedway. I know they will give me the best car possible every week and that is all we can do,” Pelland explained. “We have been here before, we just can not beat ourselves. If we take care of what we have to do and not have bad luck I am confident we will go back to back.”

Pelland has come a long way from the early Street Stock days and now is starting to get his Pro Stock effort better and better as well. Could this be his finale campaign the Late Models? The A&A Auto Parts machine is among the top five fastest cars every week. Does it go out with a bang?

Currently second in the division standings is Rose Jr., a Tiverton, R.I. veteran and driver of the No. 7 Woodruff Brothers Late Model. He has been in action in New England stock cars for many years. Besides driving at Seekonk in the Late Models, Rose has also ran Pro Stocks and Street Stocks in the past.

He has run consistent so far in 2015, finishing inside that top five or six spots at feature’s end on so many occasions. When you look up at the scoreboard in turn two at the end of a feature event, bets are on that Rose finished there.

Not only has Rose run well this season, but he also grabbed round one of the Phil’s Propane Triple Crown Series, putting him in the final four automatically. He will be among four drivers that will battle it out on August 29 for that title. Gaining the maximum 100 feature points that night helped his title cause tremendously.

Sitting only six points behind headed into the final stretch, can Rose come back strong and take the lead back?

For Dylan Estrella, a native of North Attleboro, Mass., the early season struggles he went through have been put aside and now the young gun is on fire. Estrella, driver of the Elmwood Dodge No. 46, sits third in the championship standings just 25 points behind the leader.

Even though he finished last season second in points, a career best, he was not even sure he would have a ride to start this season. He teamed up with Bill Bernard during the offseason and now finds himself in the middle of a tight battle with a veteran and another youngster in Pelland, just about his age.

“I am grateful to be in the position I am in honestly,” Estrella told Race Chaser Online, “because my [tail] could just as easily have been sitting at home all season. Racing is too unpredictable to figure out what will happen the rest of the season, but we’ve fought back hard and we’re in a good place right now. I’m excited to see how the fall months shake out for us.”

What happens the rest of the season in the Late Model division? As Estrella mentioned, racing is SO unpredictable. Anything could and will happen and the championship could very well be decided in round three of the Phil’s Propane Triple Crown Series double points event on August 29. The division will also have another 50 lap main event in the month of August, as part of the Crabby Manchester Memorial event.

Does fourth place Gerry DeGaspere Jr. rise to the top, jump over the top three and grab his eighth career championship and seventh in the last decade? Or is he too far behind? Even though it is hard to bet against him, a 55 point gap could be too much to overcome.

The Late Models return to action this coming Saturday evening, with a normal 30 lap NASCAR Whelen All American Series affair.

For more information on the 2015 season at Seekonk, visit www.seekonkspeedway.com.

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