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"EYE ON RIVERHEAD" by Bob Finan
Tuesday, August 21, 2012
Before we review the racing we did get in this past weekend we first want to let you know what will be happening after Saturday's show was lost. The 22-laps remaining in the Late Model feature event from August 11th will be completed this Saturday, I Love America Night, August 25th and be run first. The Full Size School Bus Demolition Derby set for last Saturday moves to this week as well, setting up one spectacular evening to say the very least on Donaldson's Volkswagen-Subaru night. The 8-Cylinder Demolition Derby that was to be run this week has been dropped with no make-up date. If you know someone who might not be a die hard race fan but has hinted they'd like to come out to the track, this is a perfect night for them to make their first visit!
The 2012 Champions Night is set for Saturday September 8th with all divisions in action and this indeed will be the final points race of the season. The Blunderbust and Legend Race Car features that will join the Riverhead 200 WM T race on September 15th will be non-point races as will all of the stock car features on Saturday September 22nd. Only the National Demolition Derby Championship will pay points that night. Extra purse money however will be added to all race purses for the 22nd.
Defending Grand Enduro champion David Antos #73 nailed down his first win of 2012 in a 50-lap feature event that saw the driver of the G&R Performance Chevy master a game of cat and mouse with lapped traffic. Every time his nearest challenger Steve Mastro #45 got close to David the leader would find a way to use that traffic to his advantage to pocket his second career win.
Despite his car dropping some heavy smoke as the race wore on Mastro would be runner-up in the N.Y. Auto Giant Chevy, hopefully by the Labor Day Sunday Enduro Steve and his crew will solve the smoke issue.
What a drive by James Charrier #36 to come from 17th to finish third in his Clear Beer Draft Chevy, unfortunately for James he pretty much used up his car just to get to third and by the time he did leader Antos was pretty much uncatchable.
Great to see Kevin McCarthy #24 back in the field with his K-Mac Electric machine and not only was he back in action but he finished a handsome 4th.
Part-time Long Island Jam reporter Greg Berkowitz had a fine afternoon as he was 5th in the race and later he backed that finish up and actually improved upon it with a 3rd in the 4/6-Cylinder Car Enduro. A stellar day for the Merrick resident.
Don Carasiti had to use his back-up car after his primary IRIE machine was wiped out a couple weeks back. Don was the only driver in that three car crash that was back racing as both Ray Fitzgerald #16 and Thomas Berg #58 could not make it back this Sunday.
Although he had won out of state before Greg Harris #65 so badly wanted to grab that first career win at his home track Riverhead Raceway and that is exactly what he did Sunday in the 4/6-Cylinder Truck Enduro. Greg led all 50-laps in hi SGS Stone Works Chevy to make his first visit to victory lane and we are sure it won't be his last.
Don Nelson in the Repo Joe #38 would move in on Harris several times during the race but every time he got the leader in his sights lapped traffic would slow his momentum and he'd have to settle for runner-up money.
The ageless Robin Vollmoeller #2 was third in his Spit's Speed Shop Chevy; he did get close enough to Nelson to distract the eventual runner-up as well.
Ben Gregor #45 was 4th in the Gregor Well Drilling machine and after winning several times in 2011 is still seeking that first win of 2012.
Johnny Cricchio #31 had a fine run as he posted a 5th place tally in the Camp Sunshine "grocery getter", the former Kevin Nowak 4X4.
Hard impact when Warren Collins #77 T-boned a spun Doug "Stockade" Dickson #69x, Doug was a tad shaken-up but he did walk to the ambulance under his own steam. Collins, who along with his brother just opened Lakeside Automotive in Middle Island, reported in the social media Monday his truck just might be a write off.
Anthony Pizzo might not have brought a broom to the track with him Sunday, but never the less he scored a clean sweep of both 8-Cylinder Enduro's in his United Exhaust Shops Caprice. The first win came in a 75-lap contest, while the nightcap was a 40-lapper. Pizzo was also on the march in his A. Voight Towing 4/6-Cylinder Car before getting caught-up in somebody else's mess.
Dege Russell #2 trailed Pizzo in the first race to finish second in his Kelly Russell Realty Chevy, while in the second race Dominic Ranieri was runner-up to Anthony in his Westhampton Auto Salvage entry. Ranieri was 3rd in the first race.
Jess Martines was third in the nightcap, this after finishing fourth in the first race. Keeping track so far?
Garry Hubbard was 5th in the first 8-Cylinder race in his Aluminum Skate Boards #22, while Steve Fabb #28 scored that finish in the second race.
NASCAR Modified 14-year old rookie Vincent Biondolillo #24 made his debut in the "Mad" Mike Smith 2 Brothers Industries Chevy but was out early with mechanical woes.
Emily LaSpisa #18, daughter of two-time Late Model winner Chris LaSpisa, was also in the field for the first race in her Enduro debut behind the wheel of the Timmy's Towing racer.
The "Pitbull" just keeps on barking in the 4/6-Cylinder Car Enduro ranks as Steve Trimboli #13 scored a very convincing win in his Mercedes Benz in a 60-lap contest. Steve also debuted an all-new Grand Enduro machine but that car was not up to his liking so he dropped out of that race early.
Super job by "Big" George Davis #14 who pocketed a well deserved runner-up finish in the Sign Design mount.
In his Enduro debut, former Tim Contarino crew member Anthony Bracolina #11 came home a very impressive 4th in his Lou's Towing machine, which by the way had no brakes. Anthony was quick to point to a Friday night team meeting for his good finish.
Amanda Anderson #5 had a great afternoon as well as she drove her Mike's Auto Repair racer to a career best 5th place finish which made her step-father and car owner Mike Mujsce very happy.
One great sign Sunday, especially in that 4/6 Car Enduro was the number of new names that took part in the racing action.
Prior to the Enduro racing there were plenty of Saturday night racers taking some practice laps including no less than 9 NASCAR Modifieds.
Danny Watts is back in a NASCAR Modified as he was making his first laps in quite sometime in his Danny's Cesspool Service #82.
Kyle Ellwood #17x also took his first laps of 2012 in his TS Haulers/Brigandi Brothers Automotive Chevy. A leaky power steering line didn't slow the current Legends point leader.
Tom Rogers Jr. has not only his Relay Communications #0 on hand but also the Ambrose Racing #3, Tommy ran the white car for the first practice before SPT talent Frank Dumicich Jr. took over for the rest of the warm-ups.
Also on hand were John Fortin Sr. & Jr., Dave Sapienza, Kevin Orlando and Dave Brigati.
No less than four Blunderbusts were taking some laps with Tommy Walkowiak, Rob Bader, Tom Sullivan and Bryan Quilliam on hand.
The Barkers Brothers S&K Speed Late Model made its 2012 debut with both CJ Lehmann and Brandon Hubbard shaking the car down.
Chris LaSpisa was on hand with his #7 Late Model, while brother-in-law Timmy Mulqueen had his #77 Figure Eight on hand.
Nearly a dozen Legend Race Cars also hit the track prior to the Enduro racing and among those were Shawn Wanat, Bryan Kelly, Jay Sendlewski, Kyle Soper, Dylan Slepian, Michael Rommeney and Vincent Colletti.
Two drivers who hit the track for the first time were Elijah Rios #24 and Joe Gulotta #86 with their game plan to just practice the rest of this year getting ready for 2013. Both drivers did make some contact with the wall as they start the learning process.
Chad Churilla under the watchful eye of David Roys took his first laps in what will be the #20 Charger, the former Wes Zaleski #6 driven once this year by Rusty Turbush.
Until next time - BF
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