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Ryan Preece Preps For Riverhead Raceway NASCAR WMT Event With A Victory In The Baldwin, Evans & Jarzombek 77 Saturday
by Bob FInan
The annual Baldwin Evans & Jarzombek 77 NASCAR Modified event at Riverhead Raceway Saturday turned into a game of restart chess and when all was said in done it was Ryan Preece of Berlin, Ct. calling out checkmate as he topped a 24-car field for his second win of 2012 for car owners Bill & Barbara Park. The Mobil 1 night win comes just one week prior to the Riverhead 200 this Saturday for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour and Preece will go into that event on a roll when he straps into his WMT ride with the Flamingo Motorsports team.
"The Natural" Timmy Solomito set fast time with a lap of 11.664 earning a $100 bonus from Brigandi Brothers Automotive and he drew pill number two for a redraw where he picked the outside pole with defending race winner Ron Silk grabbing the pole. The game of high speed chess wasted no time in getting underway as at the drop of Frank Bonsignore's honorary green flag Silk moved right our front with Ted Christopher sticking his nose from his third starting spot under Timmy Solomito for second. The race was dotted with numerous yellow flags early in the contest and right behind Silk and Christopher drivers like Timmy and Shawn Solomito, Tom Rogers Jr and Ryan Preece were all jockeying for third through sixth both during double file restarts and under green flag conditions. On lap 21 the first of five changes among the top two positions would take place in a 14-lap span as Preece was able to slip under Ted Christopher for second and for the follwoing 3 laps he and leader Silk would go side by side before Preece would wrestle the lead away on lap 25 with Silk and Christopher in tow.
On lap 27 during another double file restart Christopher was able to slide under Silk by a nose for second with Silk now moved back to third but that would all change when another yellow waved on lap 33 setting up another game changing double file restart where Christopher now on the outside of the front row. Ted tried to make a gallant run at leader Preece on the restart but going down the back stretch he tried to close the door on third place Silk and when he tried to slide in front of him contact was made and Christopher went for a wild ride through the infield in the third and fourth turn coming to rest on the apron drawing a caution. It was at that time NASCAR Officials called for single file restarts with Ryan Preece leading Ron Silk and Shawn Solomito.
Shawn Solomito went right to work on Silk for second and with the race finally having some longer green flag runs that was music to Ryan Preece's ears as he was able to pull away slightly. Solomito moved his way to second on lap 53 with an inside pass on Silk off turn four and Shawn went right to work at trying to reel in the race leader. With point leader Howie Brode and third place point man Tom Rogers Jr. already having issues dropping them in the field Shawn Solomito knew he was going to have a good points night, now he wanted the win. In the final 10-laps of the race he reeled in Ryan Preece and was able to get close to the eventual winner especially in the final two laps but the race belonged to Ryan Preece who is the grandson of legendary car owner Bob Judkins as he took the checker flag first.
"Bill and Dave work on giving me a great car every time we come here and I can't thank them and Team Park enough for this opportunity" Ryan, who started the race 6th proclaimed. "I know Bill raced against Tommy, Richie and Charlie and this was a special race for him so I'm glad we could win it for him and our sponsors Elite Towing and JAD Carpet Showcase".
Shawn Solomito of Islip would take runner-up honors in the Acme Sanitary Service Chevy and indeed come out of the race as the new points leader by 12 over Howie Brode, 346 to 334. Todd Szegedy of Ridgefield, Ct ran a smooth and steady race all night to finish third in the Dunleavy's Truck & Trailer Repair machine. After his lap 33 spin, Ted Christopher of Plainville, Ct barnstormed his way back to a 4th place finish with Eric Goodale of Riverhead completing the top five.
Roger Maynor of Bay Shore notched his third Figure Eight win of 2012 in a 20-lap affair which moves his career total to 107 wins in the division since 1985. Rookie drivers "Mad" Mike Smith and George Seus paced the field for the first two laps before contact was made giving leader Smith a left front flat while Seus suffered damage of his own. That moved Roger Maynor and Arne Pedersen into a familiar role in racing for the feature event win. Roger Maynor in the Barrasso & Sons Mason Supplies Ford would have Pedersen and all others covered in this one as he would lead the remainder of the race to make yet another visit to victory lane. Arne Pedersen of Mastic Beach was runner-up in his BNR Home Improvement Dodge, while Ken Hyde Jr. crossed the line third in the Planet Automotive racer. That finish moves Kenny into a tie with Mike Mujsce for the championship lead with 320 points, with Pedersen third with 318 when the class returns August 18th.
Chris Turbush of Riverhead found himself in an unusual position as the 20-lap Charger feature lined-up Saturday as he sat on the outside pole, a rarity for the four-time defending champion. Chris wasn't about to look this gift in the mouth as he and Brian Doyle would race for the lead early with Turbush having the advantage. CJ Lehmann moved by Doyle for second on lap 5 but he would spin after contact from Doyle on lap 9 drawing a yellow. With Doyle sent to the rear for rough riding that moved Jeremy McDermott to second and McDermott who had already made his way to third from a sixth place starting position was once again ready to lock horns with Turbush over the final half of the race. McDermott was able to keep in step with the leader but in the end it was Chris Turbush steering his East-West Marine Chevy into the winner's circle for the 31st time in his career. Jeremy McDermott of E. Stroudsburg, Pa was second in the JDP Mechanical Chevy while Eric Zeh of Selden was third in the Randy's Performance Chevy. McDermott leads Zeh in points by 12, 368 to 356 going into this week's 30-lap, time trial feature.
Lou Maestri of Deer Park would lead the way in Super Pro truck qualifying with a lap of 13.684 but in the redraw among the top six from time Lou would draw the fourth starting berth. The Turbush Brothers, Chris and Roger would draw the front row and when the green light winked on it was Roger riding the outside lane to the race lead with Chris second and Lou third. The story of the race would be Roger being able to pull away and open a comfortable lead in his Allied Air Conditioning Chevy, due in part to the battle that would rage for second behind him between brother Chris and Lou Maestri. Not even a late race caution for a third incident involving Mike Albasini and Frank Dumicich Sr. could change the complexion of the race, although it did give Maestri a chance to vent with Chris Turbush as the truck sat in turn two. At the finish it was Roger Turbush topping off his week that saw him and girlfriend Stephanie Brigati getting engaged take home his 12th career feature event victory. Chris Turbush of Riverhead was runner-up in the M. Cary Inc Chevy, while Lou Maestri of Deer Park was third in the Star Car Repair Center mount. Chris Also leads Lou by eight points in the title chase, 318 to 310.
Mobil 1 Night NASCAR Modifieds:
1. Ryan Preece 2. Shawn Solomito 3. Todd Szegedy 4. Ted Christopher 5. Eric Goodale 6. Ron Silk 7. John Beatty Jr. 8. Kevin Goodale 9. Dave Sapienza 10. Howie Brode 11. Ken Darch 12. Vinny Biondolillo 13. Eddie Brunnhoelzl III 14. Jason Agugliaro 15. Tom Rogers Jr. 16. Frank Vigliarolo Jr. 17. Marisa Niederauer 18. Brad Van Houten 19. Timmy Solomito 20. Richie Pallai Jr. 21. Justin Bonsignore 22. Glenn Logan 23. Chris McGuire 24. Ed Brunnhoelzl Jr.
1. Roger Maynor 2. Arne Pedersen 3. Ken Hyde Jr. 4. Tom Ferrara 5. Mike Mujsce 6. Scott Pedersen 7. Timmy Farrell 8. Mike Smith 9. George Seus 10. Tim Mulqueen
1. Chris Turbush 2. Jeremy McDermott 3. Eric Zeh 4. John Baker 5. Derek Stachecki 6. Jayson White 7. Daryn Miller 8. Rob Visconti 9. CJ Lehmann 10. Jack Handley Jr. 11. Brian Doyle 12. Tom Sullivan 13. Ray Minieri 14. Cory Midgett
Super Pro Trucks:
1. Roger Turbush 2. Chris Turbush 3. Lou Maestri 4. Frank Dumicich Jr. 5. Brian McElearney 6. Keith Rotzi 7. Kevin Scharfenberg 8. Anthony Vecchio 9. Peter Rotzi 10. Rich Campo 11. Frank Dumicich Sr. 12. Mike Albasini 13. Erin Dumicich
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