When short track racing is on the schedule at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park, you can bet Keith Rocco will not only be there, but he will probably be in the lead, especially in the track’s Sunoco Modified division, where he has eight career division titles.
But, ‘Kid Roc’ has also proved tough in Tour-type Modified races at ‘The Big T’, where he has two career wins under Modified Racing Series sanction. Now with the creation of Thompson’s new Outlaw Open Modified Series, many Modified drivers in the Northeast, including Rocco, have a shot at the big prize this coming Icebreaker weekend, which just happens to be worth $10,000.
With the backing from longtime car owner Mark Pane, Rocco is ready to return to action at Thompson with a fresh new car.
We’re really excited. Mark Pane funded us to build a new car, so I’m very excited to be racing with him up at Thompson,” Rocco told Speed51. “I think it’s going to be a great turnout and hopefully we have some success there. We have a lot of high hopes and we’ve worked hard over the winter. Can’t wait to get back at it and show them what we got.
Including the Icebreaker, four midseason Wednesday night shows, and season ending World Series; Thompson is set for a half-dozen race schedule for 2021. It’s a number that just fits in Rocco’s wheelhouse.
“Six races is a good amount up there, Thompson is a far drive for us, and we do a lot of racing as it is. Very happy with the schedule, like to see a few more, but it’s nice to be getting back to a regular schedule.”
Overall, Rocco is happy with how the effort for 2021 is coming together. The only thing he knows that’s left to do is to put on a winning drive.
No excuses here, it comes down to me on our performance. We got all the pieces of the puzzle, I think we’ll have a good team in the infield for pit stops. Hopefully we come out of the weekend with a good finish, if not a win.
The season long effort for Open Modified wins isn’t stopping ‘Kid Roc’ from going for a ninth Sunoco Modified title, despite not putting in much offseason preparation.
“It’s kind of funny, we just wheeled that car out of the corner the other day and it looked pretty rough. We just put a body on it and went through it quick, gave her a fluff and buff. But, excited to get that back to Thompson too.”
As for being able to hang tough and win against the Tour-type teams over the whole year, Rocco was quietly confident that the No. 57 team is up to the task.
“I think so, yeah. I think so.”
-Story by: Connor Sullivan, Speed51 Northeast Correspondent – Twitter: @Connor51CT
-Photo credit: Speed51