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"EYE ON RIVERHEAD" by Bob Finan
Wednesday, June 20, 2012
John Fortin #48 sure picked a nice way to celebrate his 25th Anniversary last Saturday evening when he won the 35-lap NASCAR Modified feature event after a holding off a hard pressing Ted Christopher #15. John was tested especially in the closing laps every inch of the way by Teddy, who did try and rattle the SGS Stone Works Chevy out of the way but to no avail. With the win, John's 27th career triumph, the former three-time NASCAR Modified champion trimmed a healthy 12-points off of Howie Brode's point lead, 226 to 196.
Ted Christopher had to settle for runner-up money in the Eastport Feeds Chevy that set fast time earlier in the day with a lap of 11.748. Now if you read my race results, sorry, I made a rookie error for which I'm sorry, I guess us old guys shouldn't write at 6:00 am the day after a race. Teddy now has finished third three weeks in a row and you know that has to be getting really old in a hurry. By the way Christopher going into Whelen All-American Series action this Thursday at Thompson is 6th in the National Championship chase, Ryan Preece has moved to 4th!
Shawn Solomito #99, that's right #99 was third in brother Timmy's machine. Shawn was just so thrilled that "The Natural" turned his car over to him. When I saw Timmy signing-in, his words to me were, "hey, my luck isn't really great now and I want to keep Shawn in the points". Shawn's own #66 according to his wife Kristy can be saved! She told me fabricating guru John Meade of Meade's Welding & Fabricating is doing just that right now and the car could be back this week. Time will tell. Shawn was third Saturday in the American Tent Corvette and is third in the championship chase with 182.
Eddie Brunnhoelzl III 8x just keeps on rolling as he was 4th Saturday in the Senix Creek Inn Chevy. The only blemish on his 2012 season to date was his DNF in the second 30-lap race on opening night otherwise he'd be right in the title fight!
Tom Rogers Jr. #0 was back in the Relay Communications Chevy and seemed to have lost the handle on the car early in the race. Tom pressed on for a fine 5th place showing. He now sits 5th in points with 166, just 4 back of John Beatty Jr. #14 who has 170.
Feel good story #1 of the top ten was Jerry Solomito Jr. #59 who raced his way to a solid 6th place finish in the Supreme Skylights Chevy. Jerry timed among the top six and ran a super race.
Point leader Howie Brode #96 crossed the line 7th in the Peter Clark Motorsports Chevy, I'm sure that the 22-lap green flag run that started the race didn't fit into Howie's game plan.
"KO" Kevin Orlando #02 won the "Tiger" Tom Baldwin Hard Charger of the Race Award by Fredd Bobb by driving the Gershow Recycling Chevy to a 8th place finish after starting 14th.
Feel good story #2 among the top ten would go to 14-year old Vinny Biondolillo #06 who drove the Premier Utility Chevy to a fine 9th place finish. It was a blast watching Vincent signing autographs after the races!
Amber Fortin #04 was another driver who picked-up 6 spots during the 35-lapper as she wheeled the sponsor needed Chevy to a 10th place finish after starting 16th. Business owners, please note this young talent would be a great marketing partner for your team.
Big thanks to John Beatty and the North Shore Recycling team for allowing News 12's Sean Bergen to shoot a segment for his On The Job feature that airs during the week. Sean told us within the next 2 to 3 weeks the piece should hit the air! We hear John Beatty Sr. may have caught the eye of some Hollywood types!
Nice touch by Frank Saladino to allow Sal Accardi Jr. to start the race in his #25. It was Father's Day weekend and Sal wanted to pay tribute to his recently deceased father "The King of Islip" Sal Accardi Sr.
This week the NASCAR Modifieds will race for the Rapid Recovery trophy as they host their "night at the races" as a seasonal sponsor for the class.
Roger Maynor #28 made his 105th career trip to the winners circle as he topped the 15-lap Figure Eight main event. Maynor and Arne Pedersen #34 were going toe to toe when Pedersen was forced to pit during a yellow with a broken ball joint. From that point on Roger was able to stay out front in the Barrasso & Sons Mason Supplies Ford. Maynor told us in the pits afterwards that the car needed to be rebuilt during the off-season after a heavy crash last fall at the Citrus County, Florida Speedway.
Point leader Mike Mujsce #13 brought the Bill Beener Tree Service Chevy home for runner-up money. Mujsce leads Ken Hyde Jr,. #58 by 6 markers, 192 to 186. Mike was able to shadow Maynor for the second half of the contest before taking home second place cash.
Ken Hyde Jr. in the Planet Speed entry was third after driving a race that shows how far he has come to date this season. Ken was amid some newcomers early in the race and instead of forcing the issue dropped back a bit, let things play out and boom, he was rewarded with that fine finish.
"The Alter Boy" Tom Ferarra was fourth in the K Clement Landscaping racer after his car driven by owner Mike Mujsce in the final practice made contact with "Downtown" George Brown. The damage on Brown's Plymouth Coupe was bad enough to send that team home early.
Newcomer George Seus #3 drove a fine race for 5th place money and once he finds a line he likes might just surprise some people later this year.
The Bill Farrell owned #16 with son Timmy at the keyboards finally had their new Chuck Deon motor under the hood and they were 6th.
"Mad" Mike Smith pulled a Fred Dunlop Sr. last week. Right smack in the middle of the day after practicing the Benny Vecchio 1957 Chevy he bought the car in the pits. bolted four new Hoosier Tires on it and was 7th. By the way Mike told me he had a blast. For you youngsters out there Fred Dunlop Sr. would buy Figure Eight cars, sometimes between the heat races and consi and at one time fielded a half dozen cars at Islip Speedway!
Jeremy McDermott #5 won the 30-lap Charger feature event for his 4th career win in the JDP Mechanical racer. Jeremy and good friend Eric Zeh #34 went side by side for the race lead in a great battle for the win with Zeh seeking his first ever! However Jeremy would take the top spot and in the process sole possession of the point lead over Chris Turbush #81, 230 to 222. McDermott by the way is about to get busier at the track as he'll drive the Jimmy Wichert #4 Unique Golf Dodge perhaps as soon as this week for the 50-lapper!
Zeh was runner-up in his Finishline Container & Construction entry and he is just a race or so away from breaking into victory lane!
"Radiant" Ray Minieri #43 was third after leading early in the contest in his F&S Race Fuels Pontiac, Ray is 5th in points with 214.
CJ Lehmann #1 crossed the line 4th in the Your Floor Store Chevy and is now tied with John Baker #07 for third in points with 216 each.
Chris Turbush #81 fought an unruly Chevy for most of the race with a 5th place finish after a late race stop in the Arrow Exterminating machine.
Brian Brown made his first start of 2012 but his night ended early and hard with a trip into the wall under the starters stand.
Scott Maliszewski #22 pocketed his 16th career Blunderbust win in his Thomas J. Stock Attorney At Law Chevy. Scott wasted little time taking the lead after finding himself with a rare front row starting position. Maliszewski told Steve Halpin in victory lane that his car was still for sale and priced to sell!
The drive of the night in the Blunderbust feature belonged to "Krazy" Ed Mistretta #27 as he wheeled his Busy Bee Pest Control machine from 14th to a runner-up finish. As the race ended he was getting ready to reel in the eventual race winner to boot. Mistretta is now 4th in points with 192, just 6 back of third place Jack Handley Jr. #49
"Racing" Ray Shannon #64 enjoyed a steady race and was in the hunt all evening and he brought the Centereach Transmissions Chevy home third.
Championship contenders "Slick Pick" Tom Pickerell #4 in the Premier Utility Chevy and "The Wildchild" Tommy Walkowiak in his Blaze Fuel Oil Chevy just can't get away from each other as they were 4th and 5th in the feature while in points Walkowiak has a slim 2-point bulge on Pickerell, 224 to 222. Get used to it folks, it looks like it will last all season!
Great 6th place effort by Justin Wahl in the R&B Quality Electric & Solar #61.
Tim Mulqueen #77 quietly having a good season with a 7th in his Timmy's Towing entry and he's 5th in points currently with 182.
The "Quietman" Scott Sepe was 10th in his Buick Park Avenue.
Simply stated Kyle Ellwood #71 dominated the Legend Race Car evening. First by more than 2 and a half tenths of a second he set fast time and a new track record in the process with a lap of 13.749 in his Riverhead Building Supply racer. Then during the 20-lap main event Kyle just simply checked out on the field for his second win of 2012 and to put a bow on his performance he's the new championship leader by 10 over Kyle Soper #12, 330 to 320.
Vinny Delaney #17 who is having a breakout year of his own was runner-up, all this talented young racer needs right now is a sponsor perhaps to put them over the top!
Kyle Soper #12 was third in the News 12 Long Island machine. Kyle and his dad Tom were on hand Sunday morning to practice and try out some new gearing in their feature event winning mount.
Kevin Nowak #53 took home 4th place money and he too is seeking some marketing partners for the rest of 2012.
Paul Dodorico completed the top five in the Bridal Suite of Centereach #55, Paul is 5th as well in points with 252. Ahead of him are Chris Young #49 with 298 and Brendon Bock #33 with 296.
Jeffrey Goodale #46 6th in the Buckley's Irish Pub entry.
Nice run for the Cafe Amicci #19 of Alex Urbina with a 8th.
Twenty eight Legends on hand last week, both Fred #5 and Mike Smith #48 did not start the feature. Card scratched after time trials and Smith never did take time.
Late Models return this week with a 50-lapper and time trial qualifying.
Super Pro Trucks back in action too this Saturday!
Brian Fass #181 won the slam-bang 8-Cylinder Demolition Derby after out dueling Andrew Fowler #15, Fowler would be named Judge's Choice while the always passive "Pistol" Pete Mikos was voted Fan's Choice.
James Charrier #36 continues to control the Grand Enduro action as he won his 3rd race in 4 starts in the Clear Beer Draft Chevy. Charrier also had to survive a intense post race tech that the officials put the class through but James and the entire top five passed with flying colors.
Bob Engelfried #63 once again could only watch while his brother- in- law pulled away to victory. Bob would finish second.
"The Flying Phys Ed Teacher" Greg Zaleski #18 placed third in the Gallo's Used Auto Parts Chevy and as the race concluded he might have been the fastest car on the track.
Steve Mastro #45 was 4th in the Atlantic VW-Audi Chevy, while veteran Joe Parcelluzzi #28 was 5th in the Blue Point Auto Body entry.
Michael Retus #51 now backed by Family Auto Parts, who we use at Indy 3000 Fast Lube in Medford and Mastic. Give Billy and Jimmy at Family a call and tell them Michael Retus sent you.
Don Nelson Jr. #38 romped to victory in the 50-lap 4/6-Cylinder Truck Enduro to score the win in his Repo Joe Used Car Events Chevy.
Greg Harris #65 was runner-up in the SGS Stone Works Chevy, while his father-in-law Robin Vollmoeller #2 placed third in the Spit's Speed Shop Chevy.
Ben Gregor in the Gregor Well Drilling #45 and James Badalato #5 in his Blue Point Auto Body Chevy rounded out the top five.
It had been a long winless four year drought for Donald "Woot" Lawrence but when the checkers waved over the 75-lap 8-Cylinder Enduro he snapped that dry spell in his Westhampton Auto Salvage Chevy.
Chasing "Woot" in the first 8-Cylinder race were Dominic Ranieri #15 in the Spare Parts Racing machine and Jess Martines #12
For the second race all the veteran drivers who had won in the past entered the race but then withdrew so that a new, first time winner could emerge. Boy was that idea a great one as Jim Laird Jr. #1 led all the way to score his first ever win. Jim, who's grandparents Tony and Estelle Mastrangelo brought Jim to his first race and were fixtures in our food and beer services got Laird hooked on this great game of ours and the rest as they say is history! Laird was even using a transmission that was loaned to him by Dege Russell, one of the veteran drivers who sat this race out. Just a great story all the way around.
Dwayne Sipila #4 in his LaFilms entry and Michael Wahl in the Krazy Kars #9 were second and third to Laird.
Steve "The Pitbull" Trimboli #2 dominated the 4/6-Cylinder Car Enduro for his first win of 2012. Steve told us in victory lane that his car was off cause he didn't put enough gas in the Pitbull Motors Mercedes until this past week. Hmm, I don't know about that one Steve!
Gene Burbol #& in his Gene's 112 Service Center racer and Dennis Nelson #4 in his Repo Joe Used Auto Event Saturn were second and third.
Don't forget, next week it's a Full Size School Bus Demolition Derby and Cody's BBQ & Grill night, going to be a ton of fun June 30th!
Until next time - BF
2012 Eye On Riverhead Archive
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