August 27th, 2018
DAVE BRIGATI HITS DAILY DOUBLE AT RIVERHEAD RACEWAY SATURDAY WINING LATE MODEL AND CRATE MODIFIED FEATURES
Bob Finan PR
Versatile Riverhead Raceway veteran Dave Brigati of Calverton doubled down Saturday night during the NASCAR Whelen All American Series winning both the 25-lap Late Model and 50-lpa Eagle Auto Mall Crate Modified feature event. A near capacity crowd took in the exciting night of racing that included a School Bus Demolition Derby that was won by popular "Cheesebox" Michael Rommeney of Bohemia.
Chris McGuire paced the Late Model event for the first four la[as with Kevin Metzger in tow but a 4th lap caution flag waved setting up the first double file restart of the contest. On that restart Metzger, a former two time champion of the class rode the outside lane to take the lead away from McGuire as the field started the 5th cycle. McGuire remained second until the 8th lap when he was overtaken By Jarrod Hayes to the outside off turn four. Hayes chased Metzger over the next 7 laps but his night would soon go south when a power steering pump failure forced him to a stop in turn four on lap 16. The ensuing restart saw Dave Brigati who raced his way from a 12th place starting to spot to second when Hayes had his misfortune lined up outside of leader Metzger and when the green waved Dave steering the former Roger Oxee machine races his way into the lead to start lap 17. Metzger stayed second behind Dave until lap 22 when he was passed by championship leader Kyle Soper. Try as he might Soper was not going to be able to catch or get by the eventual race winner Dave Brigati and his Bekiesz Garage Doors Pontiac. For the driver known as "The Fancy Farmer" the win was the 5th of Dave's Late Model career, his first since 2006 at Riverhead. Kyle Soper of Manorville was runner-up in the Eastport Feeds entry while early leader Kevin Metzger of Massapequa was third in the Complete Well & Pump Chevy.
As far as the 50-lap Eagle Auto Mall Crate Modified victory things were much easier for Dave Brigati especially since he set a new track record in qualifying with a lap 0f 12.507 earning the pole for the extra distance tilt breaking his own previous record. Brigati, who has been the only champion the class has known since it's inception in 2016 started on the pole and quickly broke out to the race lead at the throw of the green. Despite not running full time in the class this season Brigati in his Brian Schwarz prepared Quest Machining Chevy was spot on for the race leading Justin Brown and Owen Grennan early on. Grennan got by Brown on lap 3 for second and had a good run going until a spin from contact slowed his efforts on lap 35. That turn of events moved Jack Orlando who is Dave Brigati's brother in law to second and over the final 14-laps of the race a Crate Modified version of Family Feud ensued. While Orlando got to the back bumper of Brigati that would be as good as it got for Jack who was hoping for his second win of 2018. At the finish Dave Brigati would earn a milestone 10th career win in the Crate Modifieds with Jack Orlando of Calverton second with the Prototype Race Fabricating Chevy. Justin Brown of Manorville was third in the Irrigation Services of L.I. Chevy taking over the championship lead in the process.
It had been since May of 2015 that Lou Maestri had won a Super Pro Truck main event at the track and on Saturday the former multi time champion of the class finally notched his 30th career win topping the 20-lap feature event. When the race got underway Lou was quick to take advantage of a front row starting berth taking the race lead with young lion Mark Stewart who was seeking his 4th win of 2018. Mark was really turning the heat up on Maestri as the laps wore down in the race and with just two laps to go got into Lou entering the third turn. Maestri got a tad loose off the contact but Stewart racing like a gentleman backed off allowing the race leader to collect and correct his truck to remain the race leader. At the finish it was indeed Lou Maestri in the Hunter Business School Chevy finally breaking a 3-year dry spell with his 30th win, knotting him with Roger Turbush of Riverhead for the all time lead in victories. Mark Stewart of Riverhead was second in his Flemington Furs Chevy further padding his championship lead. Defending champion Dave Brigati was third in his Outlaw Inc. machine.
The 30-lap INEX Legend Race Car event saw youth prevail in the extra distance race starting with qualifying when Artie Pedersen III of Center Moriches set fast time with a lap of 13.722. However when the race took the green it would be championship contender George Tomko Jr. flexing his muscles early on as he broke out the the race lead with Pedersen settling into second. The duo would run one-two over the first 21 circuits of the event before a double file restart was made necessary by a late race caution. On that restart Pedersen, a former NY State INEX champion rolled the top groove going into turn one to take the lead from Tomko on lap 22. Once out front there would be not stopping the Checker 1 Motorsports entry of Artie Pedersen III as he drove off to victory. George Tomko Jr. of Aquebogue in his PDR Race Engines machine was runner-up with impressive newcomer 15-year old William Lambros of Northport third in the William Dean Platinum racer.
Andrew Farnham of Baldwin enjoyed the thrill of victory for the first time in his driving career when he topped the 20-lap Mini Stock race. Farnham took the early race lead when the race got underway with defending champion Mike Mujsce Jr. second. Mujsce making a rare start in 2018 actually took the lead from Farnham on lap 16 with an inside pass in the third and fourth turn. Undaunted by that developement Farnham raced his way right back by Mujsce on lap 18 with just two laps left in the race and lead the final two laps to take a career first win. Afterwards Andrew made sure to thank his parents for all they have done for his racing efforts. Brandon Esposito of Farmingville and Paul Wojcik of Centereach completed the podium.
Justin Squires of Flanders was another driver who for the first time in his career enjoyed a first time victory when he topped the 40-lap Gut & Go Enduro race and like Farnham in the Mini Stocks was smiling ear to ear well after the races were over. Kevin Coyle of East Meadow and Woot Lawrence of Southampton were second and third in the race that saw several drivers black flagged from the race for passing below the inside line by Enduro race director John Ellwood.
In the School Bus Demolition Derby Michael Rommeney and his brother Kevin of East Meadow were left to slug it out for the win with "The Cheesebox" prevailing after Kevin's steering gave way. Popular NASCAR Monster Energy Sprint Cup Series spotter Freddie Kraft of Mooresville, NC was among the contestants and showed well of himself as did Street Stock regular Chris Lescenski of Riverhead. Paul Fox of Riverhead who had won all previous School Bus events at the track this season was out early after his bus quit on him.
Late Models: 1. Dave Brigati 2. Kyle Soper 3. Kevin Metzger 4. Scott Kulesa 5. Chris Turbush 6. CJ Lehmann 7. Ray Minieri 8. Chris McGuire 9. Jarrod Hayes 10. Jeremy McDermott 11. Frank Dumicich Jr. 12. Brian Doyle
Crate Modifieds: 1. Dave Brigati 2. Jack Orlando 3. Justin Brown 4. Terry Stiles 5. Artie Pedersen III 6. Dennis Krupski 7. Owen Grennan 8. Michael Rutkoski 9. Peter Bertuccio 10. Chris Rogers 11. AJ DeSantis 12. Scott Pedersen 13. Michael Albasini 14. George Tomko Jr.
Super Pro Trucks: 1. Lou Maestri 2. Mark Stewart 3. Dave Brigati 4. Sean Glennon 5. Darren McCabe 6. Tom Sullivan 7. Jimmy Rennick Jr. 8. Eddie Schutze 9. Mike Albasini 10. Frank Dumicich Sr. DNS- Frank Dumicich Jr.
Legend Race Cars: 1. Artie Pedersen III 2. George Tomko Jr. 3. William Lambros 4. Ed Cheslak 5. Jerry Curran 6. Jim Sylvester 7. Ray Fitzgerald 8. Vinny Delaney 9. Eric Hersey 10. Jonathan Parsons 11. Mike Benton 12. Stephen Coleman 13. Eric Zeh 14. Brad Van Houten 15. Dean Lambros 16. Matt Brode 17. Mike Van Houten 18. Jeff Farruggia Jr. 19. Steven Woytysiak 20. Silas Hiscock 21. Pat Moore 22. Riely O'Keefe 23. Scott Cheslak 24. Jeff Otto Jr. 25. Alex Halinar 26. Anthony Marsh
Mini Stocks: 1. Andrew Farnham 2. Brandon Esposito 3. Paul Wojcik 4. Ryan Warren 5. Russ Jansen 6. Tom Puccia 7. Mike Mujsce Jr. 8. Joe Cooke Jr. 9. Mitch Pattern 10. Tony Collingsworth 11. Heather Dugre 12. Steven Fuller
Gut & Go Enduro: 1. Justin Squires 2. Kevin Coyle 3. Woot Lawrence 4. Joe Palmeri Jr. 5. Fred Grover 6. John Palmeri 7. James O'Connell 8. Bryan Moore 9. Robert Savoy 10. Preston Prydatko 11. Dan Dimougno 12. Kim Daniel 13. Jeff Michaels 14. Charles Astacio 15. Danielle Cohen 16. Marty O'Connell 17. Keith Hodder 18. Tom Coyle 19. Christian Conklin 20. James Hodder 21. Jesse St. Clair 22. Mike Farrell 23. Joey Palmeri 24. Steve Raynor 25. Dan Augustine 26. Brian Shuker 27. Kaiin Botts 28. Michael Asdahl 29. Will Gregory 30. Kevin Augustine 31. James Johnson 32. Brad Bess 33. Tony Collingsworth 34. Ron Every 35. Anthony Rennick
School Bus Demolition Derby: Winner- Michael Rommeney