WATCH LIVE: Boston Louie Memorial at Seekonk
Both Seekonk Speedway and the ISMA Supermodifieds were casualties, with Seekonk being limited to a handful of events behind closed doors for their Friday divisions, and ISMA holding just a trio of non-points races. Thankfully, both are back in full force for 2021 with ISMA holding one last non-points round at Seekonk this Wednesday night, before beginning their championship run in late June.
ISMA joins the NEMA Midgets and NEMA Lites for the prestigious Boston Louie Memorial, being held at Seekonk for the 25th edition. Not since October 2011 have the Big-Block Supermods of ISMA turned a lap at the Eastern Mass track.
Six-time ISMA champion and local favorite Chris Perley is more than eager to get going, along with the rest of his fellow competitors, despite some bittersweetness knowing that some of the competition will still be unable to attend.
“I think that we’ve all been looking forward to this one. We had a couple of races last year, but it wasn’t enough. What’s still disappointing is the fact the Canadian border is still closed, so we don’t get to race against all our competitors. But, we still got a lot of good guys going, I’m looking forward to Seekonk; I haven’t been there in 10 years. I’ve always liked the track, it’s a great place for the Supers,” Perley told Speed51.
As for the rest of 2021, Perley and car owner of the No. 11 Vic Miller are taking things on a race-by-race basis. But, he has any race in New England penned in on his racing calendar.
Anything that’s close is always a help; we got Seekonk, then Monadnock afterwards. We’ll have Lee and Star to look forward to, and hopefully we’ll get Thompson back on the schedule. So, I like racing in my backyard. This year I’m taking it one race at a time, as usual. We’ll see how things go, but it’s nice to have options open again.
While it has been a decade since Supermodifieds have taken on Seekonk, Perley still knows the proper way to wheel a Super around the wide track. He has tasted victory at ‘The Cement Palace’ way back in 2001.
“The funny part about Seekonk, with a Super you got a lot of horsepower and the light weight cars, Seekonk is a track where you hardly ever hit full throttle. If you do hit full throttle, it’s for about a half-second. It’s more momentum, it’s a big circle, so side bite is where it’s at, that’s what we’re looking for is side bite and forward bite.”
It might not be the typical Supermodified race fans are accustomed to, but Perley believes it may very well be one of the most competitive fans will see all season long.
“It’s a fun track in that there’s two grooves, and even a third groove you can run there. There are not many tracks where you can see three-wide racing with the Supers, but this one place that gives you the opportunity to try.”
In the final outing of 2020 at Thompson Speedway, Perley and Jon McKennedy had a thrilling 140 mph duel in the closing laps, with McKennedy overtaking Perley to take the trophy. Now, Perley is headed to Seekonk ready to finish what he missed out on last fall at ‘The Big T’.
“Yeah, I think so. I was actually very disappointed with Thompson, the car we almost had it but the car was so far off of what we were looking for. There are a lot of good cars now, which great for the fans and everything because you don’t know who’s going to win. Jonathan was on a roll last year, I think there’s a bunch of cars that can stop him, he’s still going to be one of the top ones. But, we just might have something for him, that’s the plan anyways. No sense in going to a track if you don’t think you can win.”
Catch the Boston Louie Memorial featuring the ISMA Supermodifieds, NEMA Midgets and NEMA Lites at Seekonk Speedway live on Speed51.TV this Wednesday night, June 9 at 6:30pm ET with your Speed51 yearly or monthly subscription.
-Story by: Connor Sullivan, Speed51 Northeast Editor – Twitter: @Connor51CT
-Photo credit: Speed51/Rick Ibsen