2024 Open Modified 80 at Stafford Speedway

SMART Modified Tour Points Leader Carson Loftin Set To Make Stafford Debut

SMART Modified Tour Points Leader Carson Loftin Set To Make Stafford Debut

16-year-old SMART Modified Tour points leader Carson Loftin will make his Stafford Motor Speedway debut Friday night.

Jun 3, 2024

Stafford Speedway welcomes open modified competition back to the track this Friday night, June 7 with the Casella Waste Open 80.  Among the drivers looking to win the Casella Waste Open 80 will be 16-year-old modified star Carson Loftin.  After winning SMART Rookie of the Year honors last season, Loftin has taken the SMART Tour by storm this season, winning the first two races of the season and notching 5 wins through the first 7 races to lead the SMART standings.

“I’m really excited because it’s a prestigious race for modifieds and whenever you think of modifieds, you think of Stafford,” said Loftin.  “My family has always wanted to race at Stafford with our family car and for me to be the first one to race there, it really means a lot.  I have to give a big thank you to my crew chief Justin Link and all the crew for making this happen.  This was kind of a last minute deal so everyone has been busting their tail in the shop to get ready.  Thanks to my sponsors Le Blue Water, L & R Transmission, QMF Metal Electric Solutions, Affordable Septic, Glen Holmes, LLC., Mighty Muscadine Grape Juice, Tony’s Competition Engines, and everyone who helps out on this car.”

With the Casella Waste Open 80 being Loftin’s first time to Stafford, he will be at a distinct experience disadvantage when it comes to the majority of the field, but Loftin has proved to be a quick study behind the wheel.  Loftin notched 4 top-5 and 8 top-10 finishes in 2023 to finish third in the SMART standings and take home Rookie of the Year honors and he has 1 top-10 in 4 career Whelen Modified Tour starts.

“All those guys have a lot of laps around Stafford so I’m sure I’ll be at a little bit of a disadvantage with experience, but hopefully we’ll have a good race car and I can adapt well and quickly to the track,” said Loftin.  “A lot of the tracks that we went to last season I had to adapt to pretty quickly because we only get 30 minutes for practice.  At the beginning of the year we won the first 2 in a row and we had talked about it, but I never figured it would actually happen.  I’m pumped up and I’m ready to get up to Connecticut and do some racing.”

For his Stafford debut, Loftin is looking to have a clean run that will help him learn as much as he can in order to make a future stop at the Connecticut half-mile facility.  Loftin won’t be bringing the car that he has steered to 5 wins in 7 races this season, but his second car is a mirror image of his primary car.

“We’d like to run well, we don’t want to suck,” said Loftin.  “We’ve won 5 of 7 SMART races so we have a lot of momentum on our side and hopefully we can carry that over to Stafford and learn a lot for the next time we race there.  We don’t want to tear up our SMART car so we’re going to bring our other car but both cars are pretty much the same.  Modified racing up north is very competitive and I feel like there’s probably 20 different cars that could win on any given night so if we could compete for a win, that would be great.”

The 7th Annual Casella Waste Open 80 is scheduled for this Friday, June 7.  Stafford’s SK Modified®, Late Model, SK Light, Limited Late Model, and Street Stock divisions will join the Open Modifieds in feature action.  Tickets for the Casella 80 are available now online at StaffordSpeedway.com/tickets and tickets will also be available for purchase at the admission gates.  Tickets for the Casella 80 are $30.00 for adults, $10.00 for kids 6-14, and free for kids 5 & under.  Reserved seating is priced at $35.00 for all ages and pit passes are $45.00 with a valid 2024 Stafford Competition License and $50.00 without a Stafford license.  If you are unable to attend the event, tune into the live stream on FloRacing, the official streaming partner of Stafford Speedway. 

For more information, visit staffordspeedway.com, follow Stafford Speedway on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or contact the track office at 860-684-2783.