Archive for the 'Riverhead' Category
Riverhead 200 Cancelled; Tour Returns To Action Sept. 20 At New Hampshire
RIVERHEAD, N.Y. (Sept. 13, 2014) – Due to inclement weather Saturday at Riverhead Raceway, the Riverhead 200 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour race has been cancelled.
Rain moved over the track during afternoon practice and persisted into the evening, forcing the cancellation of the event by NASCAR and track officials.
Due to local regulations that prohibit Riverhead Raceway from running events after the month of September, no make-up date is available to reschedule the Riverhead 200. The Whelen Modified Tour has scheduled events the next two weekends to close out the month.
Fastest In Rain-Shortened Riverhead 200 Session
RIVERHEAD, N.Y. – Justin Bonsignore led the way in an abbreviated NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour practice session Saturday afternoon at Riverhead Raceway.
Bonsignore, from Holtsville, New York, posted a fast lap of 12.088 seconds (74.454 mph) around the Long Island bullring before rain moved into the area.
The season-high 31-car field had approximately 35 minutes on the track in preparation for Saturday’s scheduled Riverhead 200 before the rain came.
Analyzing The Riverhead 200 At Riverhead Raceway
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour will return to action with the Riverhead 200 on Saturday at Riverhead Raceway on New York’s Long Island. Below is a statistical look at the performance of tour and selected drivers at the track:
Riverhead 200 Setup:
• Championship points leader Doug Coby is the only driver to finish in the top 10 in all 10 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour events this year. A winner of 10 races at four different tracks during his career, Coby will vie for his first Riverhead Raceway victory this week.
• Defending Riverhead 200 victor Ryan Preece has four wins and has averaged a podium finish across his nine career starts at the Long Island bullring.
• The first 10 events this year have featured three first-time winners, including Eric Goodale’s June triumph at Riverhead. A fourth first-timer would be the most the Whelen Modified Tour has seen since there were five in 2002.
At Riverhead Raceway:
• Opened in 1951 as a dirt track and converted to asphalt in 1955.
• Held its first NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour race on July 10, 1985 during the NWMT’s first season. The inaugural race was won by Jimmy Spencer.
• Has held 54 NWMT races all-time, fourth-most among all venues.
• Is one of two tracks to play host to the NWMT in each of its now 30 seasons of competition, along with Connecticut’s Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park.
First-Time Winners Abound In 2014
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour has long been constituted of accomplished veterans who regularly reach Victory Lane. First-time winners are more of the exception than the rule, but the 2014 season is bucking that trend.
Three of the 10 races this year have featured first-time winners, including the June event at Riverhead Raceway, where the Whelen Modified Tour will return to for Saturday’s Riverhead 200. A fourth in any one of the four remaining dates would be the most since there were five in 2002.
Eric Goodale was the first breakthrough winner this year when he earned a hometown victory at Riverhead in June. Woody Pitkat reached Victory Lane at his home track Stafford Motor Speedway in early August, then last time out at Bristol Motor Speedway rookie Tommy Barrett Jr. captured his first win.
Long Island Driver Scores Whelen Modified Victory At Riverhead
The 28-year-old from Riverhead scored his first career NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour win Saturday night in the Hoosier Tire 200 at Riverhead Raceway.
Goodale powered the No. 58 GAF Roofing/RBSCorp.com Chevrolet past Ted Christopher shortly after a Lap 170 restart and led the final 25 laps en route to the victory.
Goodale’s previous best finish in 77 starts was second at Riverhead last June. He also finished runner-up in the inaugural UNOH Battle At The Beach at Daytona International Speedway.
[Photo Gallery] by Paul Fohlin
Earns First Whelen Modified Coors Light Pole At Riverhead
RIVERHEAD, N.Y. — John Beatty Jr. earned his first Coors Light Pole Award Saturday in just his fifth NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour start.
The 38-year-old from Merrick, New York, posted a lap of 11.959 seconds (75.257 mph) around the quarter-mile in qualifying for Saturday night’s Hoosier Tire 200.
Beatty ran the Whelen Modified Tour race twice at Riverhead last year, qualifying in the top five both times, and finished third at his home track in the June race.
[Photo Gallery] by Paul Fohlin
Tops Hoosier Tire 200 Practice Session
Preece toured the .25-mile oval on New York’s Long Island with a fast lap of 11.982 seconds (75.113 mph), recorded late in the 90-minute afternoon session.
Winner of three consecutive Modified Tour wins at Riverhead, Preece will look for his fourth consecutive and fifth out of nine career starts this evening. He has an average finish of 3.1 at the track.
[Photo Gallery] by Paul Fohlin
Analyzing The Hoosier Tire 200 At Riverhead Raceway
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour will return to action with the Hoosier Tire 200 on Saturday at Riverhead Raceway on New York’s Long Island. Below is a statistical look at the performance of tour and selected drivers at the track:
Hoosier Tire 200 Setup:
• Season points leader Justin Bonsignore earned his first NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour victory at Riverhead Raceway in 2011, the same season he also captured the track’s NASCAR Whelen All-American Series title.
• Ryan Preece has won four of his eight career NWMT starts at Riverhead, including the last three races in a row. The defending tour titlist will look at the Hoosier Tire 200 as an opportunity to gain his first win of 2014.
• In addition to Bonsignore, Donny Lia and Rowan Pennink also earned their first career victories at Riverhead. Lia is tied with Preece for the most wins among active drivers at the quarter-mile with four.
Top Rookie Solomito Right At Home At Riverhead
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Leading Sunoco Rookie of the Year candidate Timmy Solomito hopes that returning home to New York’s Riverhead Raceway for Saturday’s Hoosier Tire 200 will be the perfect opportunity to capture his first tour checkered flag.
Solomito, a 22-year-old from Islip, grew up racing at the famed Long Island bullring. Although he’s a true rookie at most all of the venues the Whelen Modified Tour visits, Solomito was asked if his experience at Riverhead will prove to be an equalizer this week.
“Without a doubt,” Solomito said. “Having so many laps there – I’ve been racing go-karts since I was eight there and stock cars since I was 16 – so I have a lot of laps there, which definitely helps me I feel.
High Expectations for Icebreaker Winner
Change is good for Justin Bonsignore of Holtsville, NY, who began the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour season in victory lane. The Icebreaker was his second victory at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park for Ken Massa’s M3 Technology team. Bonsignore led three times for 14 laps, including the final eight circuits. He bested Coors Light Pole Award winner Woody Pitkat and former champion Doug Coby for the victory. Long Islanders Timmy Solomito and Eric Goodale rounded out the top five.
“That was wild,” Bonsignore said. “I hope everybody enjoyed it. If they didn’t enjoy that I don’t know what they’re going to post on Facebook but great car. Oh my God. I was hoping I wasn’t going to be the guy to mess it up the last 25 laps. I knew I had a little bit better car.”
“He’s (Pitkat) going to win his fair share of them,” Bonsignore said. “Hopefully we go back and forth this year … He had a great car. I knew he was going to be the guy we had to beat. They tested here last week. Everybody said they were real quick. They showed it all weekend that they were real quick. They were a tick off on their pit stop and we were just a tick better and that’s all it took. The competition is so close you guys can see it. Just drove my butt off and was able to get it done.”
One of the most successful cars in NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour history will return for the NAPA Auto Parts Spring Sizzler. Rookie Jimmy Zacharias of Candor, NY will pilot the Boehler Racing Enterprises (BRE) #3 at Stafford Motor Speedway on April 26-27.
” My dad and Michael (Boehler) just started talking and put the deal together,” Zacharias said. “… Hopefully all goes well and we can continue out the season on the tour and run for Rookie of the Year. I’ll also be at Chemung Speedrome on Friday nights defending my NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Modified championship.”
Zacharias will be driving for one of the most storied team’s in local Modified racing. The Boehler family has fielded a race car since 1957. Bugs Stevens became the first driver to win three consecutive national Modified championships in Lenny Boehler’s Ole Blue. Wayne Anderson captured the 1994 crown, while Tony Hirschman, Jr. captured back to back championships in 1995 and 1996. The inaugural Spring Sizzler was won by the late Fred DeSarro in 1972.
“It’s awesome ,” Zacharias said. “I’m so thankful that they allowed me an opportunity. The car and team have been around Modified racing for a very long time. And the car has a great deal of success over the years with some great Modified drivers behind the wheel.”
Zacharias is hopeful that his sponsors will provide financial support to the BRE team. The BRE crew will work on the car, with possibly some of Zacharias’ crew members assisting.
Mooresville, N.C., — Tommy Baldwin Racing has hired Ryan Preece, the 2013 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion, to run two races in the NASCAR Nationwide series in 2014 in the No. 36 Chevrolet. Preece will make starts at Richmond International Raceway as well as returning to New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Preece, a member of the prestigious NASCAR Next program, has a decorated NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour career under his belt. He made his career debut in the NASCAR Nationwide Series in 2013 with Tommy Baldwin Racing at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. In seven years in the NWMT Preece has made 95 career starts including nine wins, 42 top five finishes, 54 top 10 finishes and 11 pole position starts.
East West Marine, based out of Manorville, N.Y., will adorn Preece’s No. 36 Chevrolet for both races.
Fourteen Race Schedule Covers Seven Tracks
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The 2014 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour schedule features a strong lineup of traditional dates along with a pair of marquee non-points events.
The Whelen Modified Tour’s 29th season will see 14 championship points events spread across four states. Added to the season-opening non-points UNOH Battle At The Beach at Daytona International Speedway is another special event paired with the June visit to New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
When the tour makes its summer visit to New Hampshire, the points race on Saturday, July 12, will be preceded by a unique, invitation-only 25-lap shootout the day before. The race will feature a limited field and is only open to past NASCAR Whelen Modified and Whelen Southern Modified Tour champions and race winners, along with 2013 Sunoco Rookies of the Year for both tours.
Continue reading ‘2014 Whelen Modified Schedule Announced’
Timmy Solomito of Islip, NY will return to Modified racing full-time at Riverhead Raceway driving for Wayne Anderson next season.
Solomito replaced Ted Christopher in the #15 Eastport Feeds car at the start of 2013. He finished the season at Riverhead with five wins and a second place points finish. He won three times in Legend Cars and was second in points again.
“Riverhead always has some real tough competition to race against. (Its) always a big accomplishment winning a race against Ryan Preece or Howie Brode. Racing at Riverhead sometimes can be a survival deal and being consistent. Sometimes you don’t have to win all the races to win the championship. Some nights you have to look at the big picture.”
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – NASCAR announced several new initiatives for the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Thursday at the annual Track Operators Meeting.
The competition changes, which go into effect in 2014, are designed to spotlight the sport’s young stars and reward the achievements of drivers at every level of the series. They were announced at the meeting, which was held in conjunction with the touring and weekly series awards ceremonies in Charlotte, N.C.
Starting next season, a national champion will be crowned in all five divisions of the series. In recent seasons, the Finalist Program honored top competitors in Div. II-V.
Earns Mod Tour Title After Two Runner-Up Finishes
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The disappointment was written all over Ryan Preece’s face following the 2012 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour season finale at Thompson (Conn.) Speedway, where he had just finished as the championship runner-up finish for a second time. But there was also a hint of defiance from Preece that – looking back – may well have been the first step toward attaining the tour title in 2013.
“To finish second just makes you want it that much more,” Preece said. “After finishing second twice, you start to wonder about will you ever get one. It’s such a great feeling to be able to finally get it this year.”
Preece, from Berlin, Conn., joined the Whelen Modified Tour full-time in 2007 as the first driver to take advantage when the minimum age for competitors was lowered to 16 for competitors. He won for the first time in his second season, and in his third campaign in 2009 Preece finished second in the final standings to Donny Lia by just 16 points. Three more years would pass before Preece had another shot at the title.
Second Mod Tour Title For Veteran Team Owner
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Eric Sanderson has been having fun as a NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour car owner for nearly two decades, so the 2013 season must have been a blast.
Sanderson’s No. 16 Flamingo Motorsports team registered four wins and 10 top-10 finishes in 14 races with Ryan Preece behind the wheel to take home a second Whelen Modified Tour title for the organization.
Sanderson, originally from Monson, Mass., got his first taste of auto racing as a teenager going to watch the races at Stafford (Conn.) Motor Speedway. It wasn’t long before Sanderson and a few friends decided to build a car and he entered Stafford’s All-American Sportsman division as a driver/owner in 1969.
Fourth Tour Title Was A Unique Experience
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Stanley “Sly” Szaban earned his fourth NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour title in 2013, but this one was a different experience for the veteran crew chief.
Szaban was the crew chief for first two, and the most recent, of Mike Stefanik’s seven tour titles. With Stefanik’s extensive résumé behind the wheel, Szaban often deferred to the driver’s experience when calling the shots. But Szaban’s fourth title came in his second season working with the now 23-year-old Ryan Preece. The difference in eras meant Szaban needed to take a different approach to reach the same goal.
“After working with Mike Stefanik – with 30 years of racing and all of the success he had – to be a part of all of that and then to take on a new and younger driver, you pretty much have to change your way of thinking and the way you do things,” said Szaban, who has now been with the No. 16 Flamingo Motorsports team for 10 years.
RIVERHEAD, NY — After having led races and finished second prior to the 50-lap Track Champions Night NASCAR Modified feature event at Riverhead Raceway Saturday, Jason Agugliaro of Islip scored his first career NASCAR Modified feature event win of his career after reclaiming the lead of the race with 12 laps left in a wild contest. Agugliaro had to ward off a last lap, last turn challenge by 2013 NASCAR Modified champion Howie Brode of E. Islip to claim the popular win in a non-stop affair.
David Roys of Coram set fast time in pre-race qualifying with a lap of 11.842 but his luck would sour in the redraw among the top 8 from time when he drew 8th. Jason Agugliaro and Vinny Biondolillo drew the front row with Jason breaking out front at the throw of the green with Vinny running second for the first lap. Lap 2 found Howie Brode ducking under Biondolillo for second. behind Agugliaro while the likes of Tom Rogers Jr., Timmy Solomito and Dave Brigati quickly came to third through fifth. While dicing for third Rogers looped in the third and fourth corner moving up Solomito and Brigati one spot each, Rogers never stopped moving and the upset driver rejoined the field nearly a lap down and would later play a role in the outcome of the race.
On lap 32 “The Natural” Timmy Solomito who was dogging both Agugliaro and Brode from third made one bold and swift move to come to the race lead when the field started the 33rd lap and it looked as though he’d waltz off to victory. However on lap 37 while Timmy was attempting to lap an angry Tom Rogers Jr. the latter slowed in front of the race leader allowing both Agugliaro and Brode to reclaim the top two spots in the race. Over the final 13-laps Brode rode the rear spoiler of Agugliaro and it would be the white flag lap where the intensity would pick up once again. Going into the first turn Jason seemed to slow a bit more than previous laps and Brode who had been peeking to the inside prior went high trying to steal the win on the final lap. The duo raced side by side up the backstretch and into turn three. Exiting turn four Jason Agugliaro pinched Howie Brode up against the wall slowing his challenger enough to grab the heart stopping victory in his Tom O’Keefe & Sons Inc Chevy.
RIVERHEAD, NY — Prior to the Green Earth Technologies 200 WMT event at Riverhead Raceway two 30-lap features were presented with Jimmy “The Kid” White Jr. of Southampton being declared the Blunderbust winner some five hours after the completion of their race while high school senior Kyle Soper of Manorville drove to the Legend Race Car victory by a few car lengths.
Jack Handley Jr. set fast time in the pre-race time trials that set the 24 car field and in the redraw would pick outside pole while defending champion Tom Pickerell drew the pole. Pickerell looking to avenge misfortune from the week before promptly jumped out to the early race lead with Handley in tow and what ensued was a race long spirited fight for the lead. With Pickerell and Handley the class of the field early on the duo would also spend a fair amount of time fighting their way through lapped traffic and it would be a lapped car that would force Pickerell from the lead on lap 28. Handley who also got involved with the lapped cars was able to collect and correct his car seemingly nailing down another victory on the 2013 season. As the race was checkered NASCAR Inspectors called for the top six cars to report to the inspection area.
In post race inspection that lasted until well after midnight it was deemed that Jack Handley Jr. had unapproved work done to his heads and the young talent was disqualified from the race. That handed the victory over to Jimmy White Jr. and his Busy Bee Pest Control Cadillac team, the second time this year the team won a race in this manner. Championship contender Scott Maliszewski of Deer Park was runner-up in the Thomas Stock Attorney At Law Chevy with Tommy Walkowiak of Ridge recovering from a spin to claim third in his Blaze Fuel Oil Chevy. White, Maliszewski, Pickerell as well as Tommy Walkowiak all had to pull the heads off their engines as well and were deemed legal.
RIVERHEAD, NY — Ryan Preece of Berlin, Ct. scored his fourth NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour victory of 2013 Saturday night at Riverhead Raceway when he executed an inside pass of Timmy Solomito with just 23 laps remaining in the Green Earth Technologies 200. The win was Ryan’s third straight WMT triumph at the demanding quarter mile oval which ties his with Mike Ewanitsko as the only two drivers to score the Riverhead hat trick winning three WMT races in a row. Preece took home an estimated $6,000 in purse and bonus money for the victory.
Rising talent Timmy Solomito won the Coors Light Pole Award when he set the standard in pre-race qualifying with a lap of 11.849 and “The Natural” would be joined in the front row by Howie Brode, the 2013 NASCAR Modified champion for the Whelen All-American Series at Riverhead Raceway. When the green flag dropped over the 28 car field it was Solomito bolting out front with Brode tucking into second. However the first of what would be 13 caution flags during the race waved on lap 2 when Ed Flemke Jr. came to a stop in turn two with a left front flat. It would be a lap 12 restart that found Ryan Preece able to slide under Brode for second setting the stage for what would the fight for the lead between Solomito and Preece that would last some 165 laps.
Over that time Solomito, 21 and Preece 22 both youthful and talented wheelmen showed great poise and patience as they had to endure nearly a dozen or so double file restarts side by side with the likes of Brode, Justin Bonsignore and others all within striking distance. Some restarts saw Solomito with an edge off the fourth corner, while others finding Preece seeming to have a run on the outside only to be denied by the race leader. One restart after the halfway point of the race saw both drivers spin their tires just for a second before they could quickly gather their cars up and go back to the business of racing for the lead and win. In the process both drivers were racking up bonus money in the form of lap money as Timmy was earning Riverhead Raceway regular bonus money, while Preece was pocketing the leading WMT lap money raised by Jim Schaefer, aka “the LI Mod Maniac”.
Takes Lead Late For Fourth Win of 2013
RIVERHEAD, N.Y. – Ryan Preece has figured out Riverhead Raceway, winning his third consecutive NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour win at the track Saturday night in the Green Earth Technologies 200.
The 22-year-old from Berlin, Conn., took the lead from pole winner Timmy Solomito on the 177th lap, sliding underneath the local driver and holding on for his fourth win of the 2013 season.
Justin Bonsignore was the next across the line, taking control of second place on lap 193 from Solomito who was forced to settled for third.
Jumps To Top Spot Late In Session
RIVERHEAD, N.Y. – Shawn Solomito led the way in NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour practice Saturday afternoon in preparation for the Green Earth Technologies 200 at Riverhead Raceway.
Solomito toured the .25-mile oval on New York’s Long Island with a fast lap of 12.032 seconds (74.801 mph), recorded late in the 75-minute afternoon session.
A 2012 NASCAR Whelen All American Series Modified Division Champion at Riverhead, Solomito will be making just his third Modified Tour start at the track this evenining. He finished fourth in the tour’s fist stop at the track earlier this season.
Analyzing The Green Earth Technologies 200
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour will return to Riverhead (N.Y.) Raceway for the Green Earth Technologies 200 on Saturday, Sept. 14. Below is a statistical look at the performance of tour and selected drivers at the track:
Riverhead Race Setup:
• NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour points leader Ryan Preece has four wins and eight top-five finishes in 10 career races at quarter-mile tracks. Three of those wins have come at Riverhead Raceway.
• Justin Bonsignore, Donny Lia, Rowan Pennink and Mike Stefanik all earned their first career NWMT victories at Riverhead.
• Of the 30 drivers on the projected Green Earth Technologies 200 entry list, seven have previously won NWMT races at Riverhead. The list features 13 drivers from Long Island, including seven that primarily compete in Riverhead’s weekly NASCAR Whelen All-American Series.
Riverhead’s Own Goodale Looks For Breakthrough Victory
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour driver Eric Goodale has been knocking on the door of Victory Lane the last couple of seasons. As the tour returns to his back yard on Saturday, Sept. 14 for the Green Earth Technologies 200 at Riverhead (N.Y.) Raceway, Goodale hopes that door finally opens.
Goodale, originally from Riverhead, got his start in auto racing at the venerable Long Island quarter mile. The education he got from the rough-and-tumble nature of the competition there has served him well on the Whelen Modified Tour, and the bullring races have produced his best results.
“I think it just suits my driving style a little bit better,” Goodale said. “It doesn’t require so much finesse, although having some finesse definitely helps. It’s a bit more beating and banging, which is a little bit more my style.”
RIVERHEAD, NY — Timmy Solomito of Islip came to Riverhead Raceway on Saturday afternoon as a driver on a mission and when the NASCAR Modified Twin 30’s on Angela’s House night were completed “The Natural” could proclaim mission accomplished. Solomito dominated the event as he set fast time with a lap of 11.854, drew the pole and led all 60 laps of the two feature events.
The first 30 lap contest saw Timmy Solomito and David Roys bring the field to the green flag with Solomito quickly breaking our front while Roys was able to slide in front of Howie Brode for second. The first race went green to checker without a caution flag with Roys at first able to keep step with the race leader but after halfway Timmy was able to put some asphalt between himself and his nearest challenger, while Brode was very content to sit third.
At the finish it was the Eastport Feeds Chevy of Timmy Solomito topping the Angela’s House entry of David Roys of Coram while Howie Brode of East Islip crossed the line third earning the Peter Clark Motorsports team the 2013 NASCAR Modified championship. Ryan Preece of Berlin, Ct and Justin Bonsignore of West Islip completed the top five.
RIVERHEAD, NY — The second half of the Monster Truck Labor Day weekend doubleheader at Riverhead Raceway was completed Sunday evening under threatening skies with veteran Greg Zaleski of Jamesport topping the 50-lap Grand Enduro for his second win of 2013. Greg Harris of Riverhead continued his domination of the 4/6-Cylinder Truck class as he won their 50-lapper for his fourth win of the season.
As the Grand Enduro troops took the green flag it was Sal Sinatro pacing the field for the first lap in his new machine before Bob Engelfried moved by on lap 2. Things were going along nicely for Engelfried until the 12th circuit when a lapped car slowed the race leader off turn two allowing Jimmy White Jr. who had closed in on Engelfried to move by for the race lead. Once in front the driver of the Busy Pest Control Chevy stepped out on the field building a commanding lead over Greg Zaleski who moved to second on lap 13 and Greg seemed to be heading to a runner-up finish, that is until the 46th lap. As White raced through the third and fourth turn coming to start the 47th lap of the contest his car snapped into a spin handing the lead over to Zaleski. Jimmy quickly gathered up his car hoping to stay close to the new leader but as he tried to exit the second turn the car spun again as he had lost a radiator and was spinning in his own fluid.
With just three laps to go in the race Greg Zaleski wheeling his Blue Point Auto Body Chevy was able to drive of to victory and afterwards the Physical Education Teacher in the Bayport School District noted, “Rob Bader once told me sometimes its better to be lucky that good, today I was lucky”. Former champion David Antos of Lindenhurst was runner-up in his CR Customs Monte Carlo with James Charrier of Shirley roaring from a 17th starting spot to finish third in the Clear Beer Draft Chevy.
RIVERHEAD, NY — With six laps to go in the 35-lap NASCAR Modified feature event Saturday night Tom Rogers Jr. was running third behind John Fortin and Timmy Solomito who raged a race long heated battle for the race lead and win. With five laps remaining Tom Rogers Jr. suddenly found himself the new race leader and eventual race winner after the leaders ahead of him had contact with Fortin spinning and Solomito sent to the rear of the field for rough riding handing Tom his second consecutive win and 24th overall in his career.
John Beatty Jr. set fast time in qualifying with a lap of 11.844 but the soft spoken driver could only muster a 4th starting spot in the redraw while visiting John Fortin drew the pole and Timmy Solomito picking the outside pole. That set the stage for the two to renew their rivalry and that they did right from the drop of the green flag as they raced side by side with Fortin leading the first four laps of the race. Solomito would lead lap five of the contest by a nose off turn four before Fortin roared back out front on the sixth circuit. For the next two dozen laps Fortin and Solomito ran either side by side or nose to tail fighting for the race lead with Dave Sapienza and Tom Rogers running third and fourth. That too would be a heated fight for position and in fact Rogers would get into Sapienza going into three with Dave spinning and drawing a caution.
With the laps winding down to less than 10 to go Solomito started to turn up the pressure on Fortin for the race lead with Timmy getting pressure of his own from Tom Rogers Jr. from behind as the leading trio ran in very tight quarters with Fortin having to save his car off turn four a couple of times. On lap 30 Timmy got into the back of Fortin going into the third turn and this time John could not save his car as he spun from the lead drawing a yellow flag. During that yellow flag period NASCAR Officials sent Timmy Solomito to the rear of the field for rough riding handing the race lead to Tom Rogers Jr with point leader Howie Brode moving from fourth to second. Over the final five laps Rogers was able to put a car length or two between Brode and himself and drove off to his fourth win of the season in the Jessup Landscaping Chevy.
RIVERHEAD, NY — Tom Rogers Jr. of Patchogue made a triumphant return to the NASCAR Modified ranks at Riverhead Raceway this past Saturday when he won the 35-lap Whelen All-American Series feature event in his first start after serving a five week suspension. The Donaldson’s Volkswagen-Subaru night victory was Tom’s third of the season and ninth in the past two seasons and 23rd overall in his career.
Ryan Preece of Berlin Ct. once again set fast time in qualifying with a lap of 11.847 and with his recent bad luck in the redraw had one of the safety workers from the track draw for him, he’d start 4th. The front row would find veteran Tom Rogers Jr. and sophomore driver Vinny Biondolillo on the front row. When the race got underway Rogers would lead the first lap by a half car length over Biondolillo, who was trying to hang tough on the outside. On lap two Jason Agugliaro was able to pass Biondolillo for second to the inside with Ryan Preece making a quick move from the outside to the inside to race under Vinny for third going into the first turn. Preece would then pressure Agugliaro for second for a few laps before he got by Jason for second on the 5th lap of the race and all the jockeying for position behind him was just fine with race leader Tom Rogers.
Once to second it didn’t Preece long to play catch-up to Rogers and once he got to Tom’s back bumper the high speed chess game was on. Looking to execute a crossover move in the corners Preece would roll into the corners on the high side before ducking to the inside off the turns but Tom Rogers Jr. was wise to that game plan and was able to keep Ryan at bay. Watching all of this from third position was Jason Agugliaro who kept himself in position in case the top two cars got together. After the race hit halfway is when things began to settle in as Rogers was able to put some distance between himself and Preece as Ryan’s car seemed to drop off a bit and he fell back of Tom in the final stages of the contest.