POTSDAM, NY – August 23, 2017
– Mike Maresca experienced the thrill of a Big-Block Modified victory for the first time last Saturday night at Fonda Speedway. The Big-Block rookie from Potsdam, NY won his heat race and dominated the first twin 20-lap Feature on championship night at the dirt oval located approximately 25 miles west of Schenectady, NY.
“We went to Fonda and unloaded fast,” Maresca said. “We won the heat race, then got a jump out in front of the Feature on lap one or two. I just did my thing and ended up winning it which was pretty cool.”
A Feature win in New York’s ultra-competitive Big-Block Modified scene is no small accomplishment. Many drivers go years without experiencing the thrill of a win and Maresca has achieved the feat midway through his first season.
“It’s a big deal, especially winning at Fonda,” Maresca said of his victory against the very tough cast of Fonda competitors. “If you win any Big-Block Modified race, you obviously know you’re doing something right. We won it, but we were dominant which was pretty cool. It just shows how much hard work we’ve put in. It was a monkey off my back.”
Maresca’s Fonda win was sandwiched between another pair of events. He competed in Cornwall Motor Speedway’s $10,000-to-win 358 Modified race last Thursday night. The team fought the setup on the No.7m machine all night. Maresca won the B-Main, but finished outside the top-20.
“Cornwall was tough all around. We found a bunch of the stuff in the car Friday morning that wasn’t right,” Maresca said.
The team regrouped for Friday’s scheduled event at Mohawk International Raceway, but it was rained out. That gave the team a night off to prepare for what turned out to be their first victory at Fonda. Following the first 20-lap Feature, Maresa brought home an 8th-place finish in the second of twin 20-lap Features.
“In the second Feature, I just tried to save my equipment and get a nice solid finish in and finished eighth,” Maresca explained. “There wasn’t a whole lot of passing going on except on restarts. The car was in one piece and we just came out of there with what we had. We had a really fast car in that race.”
The team concluded their weekend at Utica-Rome Speedway with both Big-Block weekly action and a King of Dirt Small Block series race at the same track. Maresca was well on his way to a strong top-five run in his Big-Block Modified before a part failure derailed the effort.
“I had just passed for sixth and I thought I had a top-five car again, but I broke a left-rear bird cage,” Maresca detailed. “It happens and its part of racing. It was just a part that broke. It was unfortunate because we had a really good run going.”
Then, with his Small Block, Maresca had raced from the 12th starting spot to fourth in just five laps, but contact with another car sent him spinning. Without any cautions the remainder of the race, Maresca didn’t get any help to regain track position, but managed to race back to a 10th-place finish.
“Sunday we had fast cars, just as fast as Saturday when we got that win,” Maresca said. “We might have been in contention, at least in the Small Block race. We had one of the fastest Small Blocks I’ve ever driven in my life and made a lot of passes. I felt like I drove really well. It was a nice end to the weekend. Even though we didn’t have great results, we had a ton of speed.”
Following last weekend, Maresca now officially has a new teammate in Tim Fuller. The two drivers have pitted beside each other all season with the veteran Fuller acting as a mentor to Maresca. Now, the partnership is official and Fuller has the full support of Maresca’s team.
Maresca is gearing up for another busy weekend of action that features another four nights of racing. It’ll begin when the Super DIRTcar Series returns to action on Thursday, August 24 at Ohsweken Speedway. With the Go Nuclear Late Model Series also on the card, Maresca will be pulling double duty with his Big Block and Late Model.
“It’s been a while. Hopefully I remember how to get it around the track,” Maresca joked.
From there, the team will return home to Mohawk for weekly action before making their season debut in Small Block competition at Can-Am Motorsports Park. They’ll conclude the weekend at Utica-Rome on Sunday.
“This weekend is going to be really cool,” Maresca said. “We’re going to go to Mohawk on Friday and Can-Am on Saturday, a place I haven’t been to since I raced Sportsman. I’m looking forward to getting up there and taking our 358 that we have going pretty good. Then we go to Utica on Sunday, which is one of my favorite spots to race at. Hopefully we can get another solid run in there.”
Keep up with Mike Maresca’s busy schedule on social media by following @MikeMaresca7 on Twitter and by ‘Liking’ his page on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/MikeMaresca7.
Mike Maresca Big-Block Modified – 43 Starts: 1 Win, 4 Top-5, 15 Top-10s
Mike Maresca 358 Modified – 13 Starts: 0 Wins, 1 Top-5, 3 Top-10s
Rainouts: 17 Race Nights
MIKE MARESCA MEDIA
Mike Maresca is proud to partner with several dedicated partners for the 2017 race season with the Super DIRTcar Series, including St. Lawrence Radiology, LTI Transportation, Multicraft Construction, Twin Leaf Stores, Traditional Lacrosse, Rez-X Racing, Chip’s Place, Keyser Manufacturing and Leahy’s Service Center.