Pointing, In The Right Direction: Justin Bonsignore Wins Whelen Modified Tour Seekonk 150

Justin Bonsignore celebrates victory in the Whelen Modified Tour Seekonk 150 Saturday at Seekonk (Mass.) Speedway (Photo: Jim DuPont)

SEEKONK, Mass. – Points racing?

In the lexicon of racing the term can be taken by some to mean someone playing smart on the track or also be perceived by many as a sleight that they’re not trying hard enough to win.

NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour driver Justin Bonsignore is hungry for a series championship, and he unabashedly declares he’s points racing.

But there’s no way anybody could recognize Bonsignore’s “points racing” in 2018 as that of someone not trying hard enough to grab wins.

“The best way to points race is to win the race,” Bonsignore said.

Saturday at Seekonk (Mass.) Speedway Bonsignore points raced to perfection on the way to victory in the Whelen Modified Tour Seekonk 150.

It was second victory in four events this year for Bonsignore, of Holtsville, N.Y., who also won on April 6 at Thompson Speedway.

Chase Dowling of Roxbury was second and series part-timer Matt Hirschman of Northampton, Pa. third.

Bonsignore left Seekonk Speedway still atop the Whelen Modified Tour points standings.

But the guy who chased Bonsignore across the line, also continues to breath down his neck in the standings.

Dowling sits second in the standings, seven points behind Bonsignore.

Bonsignore’s Ken Massa owned went through wholesale changes over the offseason, going to a new chassis style with LFR, and bringing on a new crew chief in Ryan Stone. With the two wins Bonsignore also has a fifth place and an eighth place.

“Everything has been great so far,” Bonsignore said. “It’s like [new crew chief Ryan Stone] been here for five years. He’s an easy going, fun loving guy. … He knows his stuff obviously. These cars have been lights out every race. We came here today with something a little bit different and it worked.”

The victory was the 14th series win for Bonsignore, his first at Seekonk, but the seventh coming on a bullring track of a third of a mile or less. He also bullring wins at his home track Riverhead (N.Y.) Raceway (four wins) and Monadnock Speedway in Winchester, N.H. (two wins).

“So much of it is that you’ve got to have a good race car,” Bonsignore said. “We’ve come to every bullring and struggled at times. You’ve got to have the car under you. Ryan Stone has come on board this year and we’ve been really good at every race so far. Practice, qualifying well, got a pole today – the first one in four years – it’s the total team package. Ryan [Stone] and [LFR owner] Robby Fuller with these race cars, these LFR cars, they’re great pieces of equipment. Everything is clicking right now. I know it’s early but hopefully we can just keep this going the whole summer.”

Bonsignore won the pole and led the 48 laps, but Hirschman moved to the front on lap 49 and led the next 27 laps. Bonsignore led lap 77 before Hirschman went back to the lead the next lap and held the top spot through lap 98. Bonsignore was back out front on lap 99 and led the next 27 laps, before Hirschman led lap 127. Bonsignore got back out front on lap 128 and never trailed again.

“I was leaning on him a little bit in the beginning and he returned the favor,” Bonsignore said. “You don’t do anything stupid. I’ve gotten myself in enough trouble lately, these first few races. We’re leaning on each other, but when he had a run I let him go. You’ve just got to play things smart. I think that worked out for us because I was able to cross him over and we ran side-by-side for four or five laps and we didn’t really touch at all. Just good, short track Seekonk racing.”

Said Hirschman: “Start second, finish third and race anywhere between [first and third] all night. That’s a good night. … But we’re really only here to try to win.”

Dowling moved to second and pestered Bonsignore briefly but never found a lane to make a stout challenge for the top spot.

“Chase isn’t going to go away, that’s what I see,” Bonsignore said. “Him and [team owner Rob Fuller] and [crew chief] Stephen Kopcik, that whole team is just really strong. They struggled a little bit in qualifying today and you look at the [scoreboard] with 50 [laps] to go and they’re on the board. You’re like ‘Man, I guess they’re pretty good.’ … He’s going to get his wins. He should have a few already. He’s learning. Hopefully he doesn’t click too quickly here.”

In addition to driving for Fuller on the Whelen Modified Tour, Dowling also works full-time for Fuller with LFR, along with his crew chief Stephen Kopcik.

“It’s great,” Bonsignore said. “We can lean on them for LFR advice and we can go back and forth. He’s a good kid. … They help build these cars so it was nice he didn’t wreck us.”

Dowling started 13th and pointed to early patience as the key to his late run looking for his first series victory.

“Saving tires, I think I came on the radio on like lap 50 and I said ‘I know I’m saving pretty good.’” Dowling said. “… It’s a real testament about this team. We can struggle during the day and it doesn’t matter. We know we have a really good race car. We don’t have to show speed in practice. We don’t have to show speed in qualifying. I’m definitely here to win. I gave Justin everything I had. I tried every lane. … That’s the way it is. It will come one day.”


 

NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour-Seekonk 150 Results
Saturday
At Seekonk Speedway
Seekonk, MA
Lap length: 0.33 miles
(Start position in parentheses)

1. (1) Justin Bonsignore, Holtsville, NY, Chevrolet, 150 laps, 62.902 mph.
2. (13) Chase Dowling, Roxbury, Conn., Chevrolet, 150.
3. (2) Matt Hirschman, Northampton, PA, Chevrolet, 150.
4. (4) Rowan Pennink, Huntingdon Valley, Pa., Chevrolet, 150.
5. (8) Ron Silk, Norwalk, CT, Chevrolet, 150.
6. (7) Ronnie Williams, Ellington, Conn., Chevrolet, 150.
7. (17) Timmy Solomito, Islip, N.Y., Ford, 150.
8. (21) Tommy Catalano, Ontario, N.Y., Chevrolet, 150.
9. (9) Dave Sapienza, Riverhead, N.Y., Chevrolet, 150.
10. (14) Craig Lutz, Miller Place, N.Y., Chevrolet, 150.
11. (18) Rob Summers, Manchester, CT, Chevrolet, 150.
12. (12) Doug Coby, Milford, Conn., Chevrolet, 150.
13. (6) Andrew Krause, Holmdel, N.J., Toyota, 150.
14. (22) Blake Barney, Lakewood, N.J., Chevrolet, 150.
15. (11) Chris Pasteryak, Lisbon, Conn., Chevrolet, 150.
16. (30) Ken Heagy, Calverton, N.Y., Chevrolet, 150.
17. (27) Gary Putnam, Vernon, Conn., Chevrolet, 150.
18. (23) Gary McDonald, Ronkonkoma, N.Y., Chevrolet, 150.
19. (10) Eric Goodale, Riverhead, N.Y., Chevrolet, 150.
20. (3) Anthony Nocella, Woburn, Mass., Chevrolet, 148.
21. (25) Joe Degracia, Nutley, N.J., Chevrolet, 146.
22. (28) Melissa Fifield, Wakefield, N.H., Chevrolet, 135.
23. (24) Wade Cole, Hartland, Conn., Chevrolet, 116, parked.
24. (16) Calvin Carroll, Newton, N.J., Chevrolet, 106.
25. (5) Jon McKennedy, Chelmsford, Mass., Chevrolet, 80, power steering.
26. (26) Woody Pitkat, Stafford, Conn., Chevrolet, 48, ignition.
27. (15) Ryan Preece, Berlin, Conn., Chevrolet, 41, engine.
28. (19) Jeff Rocco, Meriden, Conn., Chevrolet, 40, brakes.
29. (29) Kyle Ellwood, Riverhead, N.Y., Chevrolet, 40, suspension.
30. (20) Matt Swanson, Acton, Mass., Ford, 40, accident.
31. (31) Walter Sutcliffe Jr., East Haven, Conn., Chevrolet, 0, did not start.

Race Statistics
Time of Race: 0 hours 47 minutes 13 seconds
Margin of Victory: 0.299 seconds
Fastest Qualifier: J.Bonsignore (99.623 mph, 11.925 seconds)
Caution Flags: 7 for 39 laps.
Lead Changes: 6 among 2 drivers.
Lap Leaders: J. Bonsignore 1-48; M. Hirschman 49-76; J. Bonsignore 77; M. Hirschman 78-98; J. Bonsignore 99-126; M. Hirschman 127; J. Bonsignore 128-150.
Standings: 1. J. Bonsignore, 171; 2. C. Dowling, 164; 3. C. Lutz, 152; 4. T. Solomito, 139; 5. R. Summers, 137; 6. J. McKennedy, 129; 7. D. Coby, 125; 8. R. Pennink, 123; 9. R. Williams, 116; 10. C. Pasteryak, 114.

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Comments

  1. NH Mark says:

    Great racing upfront all night as expected. The 51 earned that victory. Congrats to them. I have to see the reply again on Wed but it looked like the 92 got screwed. Fans were upset over that. I wasn’t at the drivers meeting and didn’t hear what was said but the high lane is usually the slow lane at Seekonk. The lapped cars on the bottom were a problem all night.

    Would love to see the Pee Dee Motorsports enter a few more events. They always make things interesting. 31 WMT tour cars strong. Seekonk’s weekly divisions were as deep as I’ve seen in years. Awesome Late Model finish. What’s not to love about the Cement Palace? You Bowl fans looking for a new Saturday night home could do worse than Seekonk. I thought the tour feature started a little late but the checkered flew at 10:10 and I hit the NH border at 11:35 so that isn’t bad. Nice seeing Steve Park last night. Good dude! The 2,6, 60,92 among others will be back on June 27th. Maybe the 51 should think about a return visit. Hmm…

    On to Thompson

  2. So Dareal…… its not the LFR car, huh? Wow man. How dumb do you feel now? Let’s listen to you try to spin this one. I’ts going to some serious navigating bud. Good luck.

  3. So if Steven is the crew chief on this fast car why do people rave over Fuller? I know that the crew chief puts the entire team and race package together not the owner. Great job these young boys are doing with the vets.

  4. If the 15 group stays together for a few years good luck beating them. The 51 and 2 and most teams have been together for a while. Chemistry is huge. Yes the 51 has a new crew chief but he is a Fuller protege in a LFR car. Kinda like cheating. I live what this series is becoming as well!

  5. The education that Chase and Stephen are getting working at LFR is priceless in their careers.

  6. Just Me says:

    Sonny, Rob Fullers crew chiefs have always been that on paper. Rob makes all decisions, when to pit, what adjustments to make etc. Steve is more of a car chief then crew chief.

  7. humphry says:

    2 wins for LFR and 2 wins for Troyer. Going to be an interesting fight to the end.

  8. Humphry. Tommy has changed a ton in that car. The Troyer cars that run up front are not stock. The 51 was assembled at LFR and kept there for months according to social media posts. Troyer has fallen way behind chasing dirt series and it shows. At least with LFR you have relavent track support. If you dont have a dog in the fight you fall behind. Troyer used to have a house car but has not for years. RnD is why LFR has taken over. In NC mods are a joke so I wish I could go up there but my paying job is on a xfinity crew.

  9. JBon is driving like his career depends on it. Been through every chassis and crew chief imaginable. Nothing else left to blame. A crew chief can make a world of difference. The 51 did that a few times, and that made a difference each time. Like I said in the off-season, JBon has to look at himself in the mirror, and turn the wick up. It’s all on him now. Made all the hardware and crew chief changes that can be made. If it doesn’t happen now, it’s never going to happen for JBon, and Massa needs a new driver. Well, I guess he could try to get a CD or Raceworks chassis if the LFR doesn’t work out.

    Did Fifield really do 109 laps in practice? Then still black flagged for failing to maintain minimum speed? There needs to be zero tolerance for that car, even special rules to get rid of cars like that, on a tight track like ‘konk. Imagine a race at ‘konk without the obstacles like the 01. It would be awesome!!! I think the 01 was lapped just 11 laps in.

    The 75 hit another bull’s eye, right in the mid-pack. Love the consistency.

    What happened to Colbee? I blinked. How many laps did the 2 lead?

    Great racing up front, as to be expected with the lineup and starting order. Silk had a good night. And that home-built chassis car was up top too… imagine that.

  10. Fast Eddie says:

    #51 got the pole by almost a tenth, a which is lot on a 1/3 mile track. That car was dialed in! Congrats to Justin and the 51 team! Bad luck for Nocella and Pitkat; I was hoping for good runs from them. In Nocella’s case, it was a good run without the result to go with it. Hoping to see #92 at more WMT races.

  11. NH MOD CHASER says:

    Another great top 10 run for Sapienza..Congrats

  12. Congrats to the 51 I’ve called him out for being wrong last night it was great racing and he earned it Matt was also respectful got him loose a couple times and didn’t take him out woody should have a chat with silk the 92 has talent should run more shows$

  13. NH Mark says:

    JBon has been to victory lane 14 times. Needs to turn up the wick?? Just missed a title in 2016. Not sure where you are going with that one. The dude is a shoe and one of the top guns on the tour.

  14. humphry says:

    Never heard of a stock modified.

    75 mid pack yep, consistency yep but that has him 10th in points. Not bad for his return to the tour in 4 races.

    Melissa, 15 laps down, minimum speed violation, time for an SKL.

  15. Dareal. Your comment it just plain ridiculous. If the LFR chassis doesn’t work out?? REALLY? Looks like it’s working just fine. So Justin wasn’t trying or wasn’t focused so now he is? Holy crap Dude. Your doing some serious dodging here pal. In plain English you sound like a dumbarss. 2 teams now have the flux capacitor the Colby team has. And guess what. Well………….

  16. Here’s the race to watch: McKennedy, Colbee and Pennink, separated by 6 points in the standings. And Pennink missed a race. Watching those three climb the points the rest of the season will be interesting.

  17. Great job Justin and the whole 51 team well earned victory. The correct spelling of Doug’s name is COBY

  18. darealgoodfella , you must not have been at the race if you are complaining about the 01. The real hazard last night was the 33. He was running really slow at one point and just about ran a couple cars into third groove trying to get to the pits. Finally he bounced off Hirschman and wrecked Nocella, giving him a flat tire and causing him to lose a couple laps. Totally ruined the 92’s race. Most of the laps the 01 were going into the pits and staying there under green several minutes.

  19. NH Mark says:

    Has the 7 made any announcements about doing the full schedule? Coby will mount a challenge but he better not let the 51 get too far out front as the season kicks into gear here. The 16 needs to pick it up.

    Goodale is the surprise point guy to me and not in a good way. He usually hangs around the top 5 all season. Not so much this year. Zachem has all but disappeared. Just one race this season.

  20. “Never heard of a stock modified.” – humphry

    That’s freaking hilarious. Great line humphry.

    Brian is confused, has no idea what that means. Doesn’t understand the intricacies of oxymorons either.

    NH Mark, after 12 years, 9 of them full-time, never a bride, always a bridesmaid. The only thing left to change, if Massa wants a championship, is the driver. The crew chief and chassis have been changed, several times, still a bridesmaid, same result. The driver needs to turn up the wick.

  21. Crazy in NY says:

    #51 got the pole by almost a tenth,

    Huh? 11. 925 vs Matt’s 11.953 hmmm .953- .925 = Zero point ZERO two eight or .028
    Fast Eddie = Slow Math. and another gem…….
    Troyer has fallen way behind chasing dirt series and it shows.
    Way? you say ? they are two wins each in 2018 as was pointed out.
    Both are good products and both produce wins. the 01 in a LFR ain’t winning nothing but the 51 will be a threat all year in one. There are many many other factors besides chassis maker that make a winning car. Most of us understand that but some of you continue to get hung up on stupid stuff.
    Don’t do that.

  22. NH Mark,
    Jon McKennedy talked about the change of plans for that team during a podcast in April.
    http://racedayct.com/2018/04/unmuffled-episode-11-featuring-jon-mckennedy-todd-owen-todd-szegedy-and-cassie-rocco-now-available/

  23. Crazy in NY says:

    The correct spelling of Doug’s name is COBY

    You must be new here. it’s a dareal thing.
    which is correctly spelled, selfinfatuatedoverpostingbloviatingnarcissistichick

  24. humphry says:

    But the 01 will be the most popular driver this year AGAIN 💥. Who knows why, but she will be. I would rather be winning races, but that’s me. BTW, the 01 has tried Troyer, SPAFCO and now LFR. A crew chief change would be a waste of time so a division change would be in order I would think.

  25. Crazy, you are setting yourself up to be labeled an edumuhcated elitist liberal by all the deplorables. That wasn’t even math, it was arithmetic. You must be a well educated kindergarten graduate. Hey, he was off by about a factor of 3.6 or 💩-for-🧠s. Don’t stop them from yapping about chassis… it’s phunny.

    Next, Brian will introduce the paint factor and how one color is the best and fastest. Brian, what’s your fastest, I mean favorite, color?

    JMB, I was surprised about the 33, he usually does a much better job at staying out of the way. That was very out of character for the 33.

  26. Humphry,What makes you think a change to a new division of any kind would change things for the 01?I’d bet dollars to donuts it wouldn’t.At the end of the day though I don’t think she is hurting anybody out there.Doesn’t seem to be the slowest every time out anymore and it’s comforting to an old guy like me to have as many entries as possible.I used to think she was dangerous but she stays out of the way so live and let live I guess.They seem to be nice people and if this is fun for them who are we to say anything.BTW the spelling is Colbee for anyone who may want to know.

  27. humphry says:

    Art, I suppose you have a point. BTW you are wrong it is Coby.

  28. humphry, the SK and SKL divisions are highly competitive. She’d be destroyed on those series IF she made the same speed. art, on a small bullring, there’s no place to get out of the way. Bullrings are usually one groove tracks, she runs the one groove through the turns, forcing the competitive cars up high. Not good. She does rather well at Loudon where there’s plenty of room to stay away from other cars, and the groove can easily be two wide. Wicked slow on a bullring is not good, it’s just too crowded. Like I said earlier, a race at Seekonk and other bullrings would be pretty exciting without the mobile obstacles. If competitive cars can just worry about racing and not be concerned with avoiding moving obstacles, the bullring events can be pretty good. art, we are the paying ¢u$tomer$, so we kinda do have some say. Might not mean anything, but we can at least say something. This is America, capitalism first!!! For bullrings, Race Control has to have a trigger finger on the black flag for slow cars.

    And Colbee’s flux capacitor seems to have a dielectric leak.

    When the race was clicking off clean laps, it was pretty exciting.

  29. Just Me says:

    @darealgoodfella, isn’t lap traffic part of racing? So what would your rule sets be to be classified as a “competitive car”? The rule should be at Seekonk, the lap cars pull out of the way on the high groove since they don’t have a pit road. I think part of the problem was NASCAR didn’t stick with the “only 28 cars qualify”, if they did, then both the 01 & the 33 wouldn’t have raced.

  30. Old man racer says:

    Anyone know what chassis Nocella was running? He usually drives a Raceworks.

  31. Old man racer says:

    Does anyone know what chassis Nocella was running? He usually drives a Raceworks.

  32. NH Mark says:

    DaReal, there were only two former champions in Seekonk’s starting grid outside of the reigning champ Coby. That was Silk and Preece. That’s a lot of bridesmaids in a 32 car field. I take it you weren’t a fan of The Reg then.

  33. Just Me, lapped traffic that makes the minimum speed, and is not a hazard and not necessarily a competitive car, has been okay. There are field fillers that are not too slow. And again, the track plays a part for a narrow one groove, tight track like a bullring is far less tolerant of moving obstacles than a wide open track like NHMS with all that room and wide sweeping turns.

    The 01 is a mess at Bristol. That car runs the low line in the turns, which is the preferred racing line, and drifts high in the straights. That constant movement across the track presents very special issues with the moving obstacle cars. The competitive cars that are racing have to be alert for when they are closing in on the moving obstacles and when they can get around them safely. Normal traffic and lapped cars is very different from moving obstacles. The closing rate between a COMPETITIVE RACING car and a moving obstacle is a danger. If that moving obstacle should get in the way of a closing COMPETITIVE RACING car, there will be severe damage. Let’s be clear, the driver of the 01 is the problem, she can’t handle the car, she can’t make speed. She’s got the equipment, tried every chassis, has great motors. She can not drive the car to make speed and can not drive in close confines. She’s never driven in a racing situation at speed in a mod. Think about that. And she has been in accidents of her own doing… Waterford comes to mind. Her car was crushed. Nice or not doesn’t matter. Are you ready to get rid of the anal sphincters that run competitively? Just because the dad is/was a police chief of a little Mayberry-like town in NH and she’s in insurance and their trailer is like a traveling chapel does not grant them special dispensation to hinder and impede the competitive racing on the track, and put all that other very expensive equipment at risk.

    And it’s not just the 01. The 18 and 26 are hazards and own a disproportionate percentage of causes of yellow flags. The 33 is not getting off to a good start at all. He had a pretty good year in 2017, looking rough so far. The 33 usually does a good job at being invisible on the track, but that’s harder to do on a tiny one groove track.

    NASCAR is still smarting from the short fields and they are allowing all cars that show up to run. They need to limit the number of cars per the entry sheet or get rid of the limit on number of cars all together. That’s one of the purposes of qualifying, to cull the slow cars. And if all cars are going to be allowed to run, that kinda makes it hard to enforce the minimum speed rule. It won’t look good if 28 cars are the limit, and the 29th car is back flagged after just a couple laps for failing to make the minimum speed. So letting more cars run above the limit makes it tough to enforce the minimum speed and we the paying customers have to put up with the moving obstacle cars until late in the race when they have made a nuisance of themselves. The 33 was slow and caused the wreck, and then a few laps later the 01 was black flagged for failing to make speed.

  34. I’m from Pennsylvania. And I want to thank Shawn for having this blog.
    What is up with the supposed “Big Money” team? They can’t seem to live up to that label. And why do they pick 3 of the lowest paying NWMT races to go to (Myrtle Beach, Seekonk, and Oswego)? I would think that you would see that black #60 at Bristol (which is real close to the where the team is from), and the 2 Loudon races. Instead after Myrtle Beach, they went the next week to a Southern race that maybe paid a couple thousand dollars to win. Don’t sound much like “Big Money” to me. And if I had to bet the ranch, you won’t see the red car at Stafford Friday for their open modified show either. More than likely because they do tech there. Instead, that red car will probably be at Lake Erie on Saturday for that New York circus. It is a far longer journey to Lake Erie, for a whole lot less money. But, the trade off is “no tech”. We’ll see

  35. NH Mark, read the news, there’s been lots of buzz about championships and JBon the last couple years, as if it is expected, anything other than a championship was unacceptable. A team doesn’t churn chassis and crew chiefs like the 51 team did over the last couple years for fun. And then the recent interview where it was made clear they are points racing. What a shocker!!! Of course they are, and have been, points racing. doh.

    Yeah, think about it… missing were Szegedy, TC, Tomaino, Stefanik, Santos, Lia… quite a crowd.

  36. The way touring series handle where lapped cars go when the leaders come up to them at Seekonk defies logic. Common sense would be for them to go high since the turns are so side and no one really runs that high. However, officials for some reason want the lapped cars to stay on the bottom which clogs things up. There was an ACT Tour race at Seekonk over a decade ago where I heard Tom Curley have a total meltdown over the scanner because a lapped car pulled up high instead of running the inside line

  37. That the 01 was black flagged shortly after the 33 caused a wreck seems to suggest that there was regret in letting more cars than listed on the entry list limit, and that they were very slow cars.

  38. dareal,She has been riding around the low groove at all the venues big and small for a few years now.If memory serves me she has not been the cause of a accident as I was sure she would be.So far I have been proven wrong.I think the black flags by nascar are meant to embarrass them.It’s not working and I think disingenuous.If they think she is dangerous they should not let them enter the races.We fans do have the right to speak and for myself I will yell about ‘most popular driver award”but other than that I have no compliants.I haven’t heard anything from the ranks of the drivers about the 01.Unless she is included in Rowan’s “scary guys’ compliant.

  39. NH Mark says:

    Seekonk is a two groove track all day long. Seekonk has a long history of letting everyone race. It’s because they agree to pay out the additional cars instead of sending them home.

    It’s all good to pile on the 01 but it was the 33 that took out the 92. The 33 messed up. His turn to take heat. Im sure he feels bad too. A little unfair to pile on the 01 when she didn’t take the leaders out.

    The high groove has always been the slow groove. It’s stubborn tours that refuse to acknowledge it there at Seekonk. If they stay high none of that happens.

  40. Crazy in NY says:

    I believe it was last year during the OWW TTOM event the drivers were asked in the drivers meeting which they would prefer. I don’t recall the answer for sure but I believe it was slow cars to the top.
    I don’t at Seekonk but it seems logical to have it that way. Slow bottom riders can really mess things up there.

  41. Just look at where the rubber is on the track in the turns at Seekonk… one place: low. The rubber is there because that is where the cars are running.

    NH Mark, if the high groove is slow, it isn’t a racing groove, it’s slow. Why run high where it’s slow? So the low groove, and only racing groove, is fast and that’s where the moving obstacles are supposed to run? Makes no sense. Try to convince a driver to stay in the high slow groove, let me know how that works out.

    art, spotters have to look far ahead for the moving obstacles like the 01 to warn the drivers of the competitive cars well in advance so the driver knows where he has to set his line. Spotters also need to be keeping the driver aware of the cars in the immediate area. It hard for the spotter to keep the car safe from immediate threats and moving obstacles a half a track ahead or more. I’m bewildered about how the 01 is off limits, like saying the name Voldemort, totally taboo. Only brings more attention to itself. Geez, yapping about any other driver has been fair game. Lia, TC and other aggressive drivers would get dumped on as they deserved. But yet, the 01 is above reproach. Makes no sense.

    Hey, speaking of Most Popular Driver, what happened to the highly coveted award in 2017? I never saw a vote and result. There is no recipient listed even today.

    art, wait until you see what the slow cars do to the race at Bristol. The competitive cars are flying, they just can’t turn and go around a slow car. And you don’t want the racing groove clogged with slow cars.

  42. Viva race fan says:

    It’s all good they take her money at gate and she deserves to race. She is great for the future of racing. Stop wasting your energy being a hater .

  43. humphry says:

    Viva, please define what “she is great for the future of racing” is. I cant wait to read this response!

  44. NH Mark says:

    Let me rephrase. The top of the track, above the racing grooves is where they need to be. I watched Wayne Dion, Radical Rick and Vinny Who march to the front there for decades. The outside groove is how you win there. There is still room for lapped cars above that. Which is why what happened to the 92 is a real shame.

  45. dareal,This year Bristol for the 1st time definitely.I have a scanner and have never heard chatter about the 01 positive or negative, and most of the guys aren’t afraid to ruffle feathers as we all know.Sometimes I hear her spotter saying “follow his line” but she doesn’t so it is what it is.I just don’t see the purpose of the black flag.If your slow off the hauler, at practice and qualifying.why the late flag after the race proceeds, attrition takes its toll and the track opens up?And as I have said b4 she isn’t even the slowest car anymore.

  46. Fast Eddie says:

    Crazy, I stand corrected. The 51 and 60 were 1/2 a tenth or more better than the rest. On that size track with these cars so close, that is still substantial. If that was run during the whole race, that’s a one lap lead at the finish.

  47. art, you aren’t gonna hear anything on the radio. But in the pits, the silence is deafening. And she doesn’t have to cause accidents to be a detriment. If she’s entering a turn in front of a couple cars battling for position, those competitive cars have to put racing on hold until they get done passing her on the high side. There’s a lot of racing that is delayed because of her since cars can’t race each other when around her.

    I hope the weather and all works out for Bristol. I can’t wait to read your review. I’m planning some other boondoggles while I’m down that way.

    NH Mark, go tell those Tour guys to run way up there, top of the track, above the racing grooves. Better yet, wait until I’m around so I can watch.

    Congrats to JBon, I hope this turns out to be his season.

  48. Fast Eddie, a half a tenth over 150 laps would be 7.5 seconds. Who was turning 7.5 sec laps? They were running like 12 sec in qualifying. 7.5/12 = 0.625, and 0.625 << 1.

  49. Crazy in NY says:

    FAST ED, your hung up on the fractions for some reason why? Justin was over 2 tenths quicker than
    Dowling in time but so what. Chase caught Matt and Justin after starting 13 th and was in the hunt to win. Those fractions don’t tell the whole story.

  50. Fast Eddie says:

    Crazy, I just thought a half tenth ahead of third & fourth and a tenth over the rest was notable. I haven’t noticed that kind of time difference before at the front of the field, particularly on a bullring track. Usually the top qualifiers are separated by hundredths, not tenths.
    Dareal, I was figuring a tenth advantage over most (all but two) of the field, which is 12 seconds at lap 150.

  51. I understand the tour letting all the cars start as far as the 01 and the 33 they would have started by points anyway I believe she’s a nice girl she is not a race car driver and I only hope she or no one else gets hurt it’s only a matter of time

  52. Fast Eddie, trying to pull a fast one, eh? LOL!!!! I crack myself up!!!!

    Decimals are so hard!!!!!

    Qualifying times are very different than racing lap times. Some drivers can drive in racing conditions better than others. Some cars were moving up, even Colbee who started very deep because of a poor qualifying time was gaining very slowly until he spun. So qualifying lap time differences mean little to nothing in race conditions, especially in a tiny, high traffic, one groove track like Seekonk. It’s not a horsepower event, no drafting, it’s a bullring, they are racing the track and traffic. And did you notice that bullring specialists dominated?

    So Fast Eddie, what are the odds of running a bullring event wire-to-wire? Go ahead, do the math. LOL!!!

  53. Fast Eddie says:

    Dareal, I agree with most of your points, particularly the one about cracking yourself up! Seekonk is two grooves all night long, although the quickest is the shortest. However, who won? The #1 qualifier, Bonsignore. Who hung right with him better than anyone else? The #2 qualifier, Hirschman. I know it’s more due to them being bullring specialists, but you can’t deny their performance advantage helped. Had the #3 qualifier Nocella not had an issue earlier I think he would have been right there with them. He and Hirschman had a great battle at the Haunted Hundred last year. I think the most impressive of all was Dowling, as that may have been only his second or third time at Seekonk.

  54. Fast Eddie, how often does the #1 qualifier win the race? Rarely.

    Maintaining a full tenth under racing conditions, with traffic, is not plausible, so that’s why I went with a smaller and more plausible number.

    If there are two grooves as you allege, and the shortest is the quickest, then there is only one racing groove: the quickest. SHEESH! You can call it a two groove track all you want, but you negate your own suggestion when you then say the shortest is the quickest.

    Do you think that their (JBon and Hirschman) performance advantage had much to do with their extensive bullring experience? Hirschman sucks outside of a bullring. That bullring-centric experience certainly helped. Nocella and Dowling had great runs. Others (that started further back than would be expected) were carefully advancing too. Silk did well.

    Traffic on a bullring is a great equalizer. And takes out those that can’t drive in traffic. Driving in traffic is pretty important. Qualifying only grants a car the privilege of less cars in front to reduce the risk of getting wrecked or caught up in someone else’s mess. That also helped JBon and Hirschman survive.

  55. Crazy in NY says:

    Hirschman sucks outside of a bullring.

    That was said for my benefit right? or……
    you’re more mentally challenged than anybody thought.
    Did he set fast time and run second at Oswego last year?
    Did he win a race and the week at NSS this past Feb?
    To be sure bullrings are his strength because they favor handling (which he excels at) over raw
    horsepower but sux? and you’d like people to take you seriously? GLWT

  56. Crazy, Oswego is a Seekonk on steroids. Oswego might be ⅝, but it’s all left turn. Thompson is ⅝ and has two real straightaways. Oswego is a big left turn, like Seekonk. Just look at how the track rubbered in. You can see the line and sweeping turns in the so-called straights. NSS? Come on… NSS keeps going the way it has been there won’t be a NSS in Feb. again. NSS in Feb. is NOTHING like it used to be. There haven’t been huge collections of the best teams at NSS in many years. Nothing to brag about there.

    Is your boy Hirschman going to run NHMS this year? Or is he too afraid to go fast? We are talking about racing here… 😎

  57. Fast Eddie says:

    Dareal, using your reasoning, so how do you pass? I’ve seen plenty of passing happen from the “second racing groove” at Seekonk and other tracks. You can’t race at a one groove track; you can only follow or lead the other teams. That’s why racers in general prefer more than one groove to RACE in.
    As for your question on bullring experience, please read the sentence from my previous post: “I know it’s more due to them being bullring specialists, but you can’t deny their performance advantage helped.”
    As for Hirschman’s expertise, he finished 3rd in 2007 and 2nd in 2008 running full time on the WMT. I’m sure he’s only improved his skills since then.

  58. NH Mark says:

    Speaking of the Haunted 100. Who won that race? Money Matt. How did he win? On the OUTSIDE.

  59. Crazy in NY says:

    Oswego might be ⅝, but it’s all left turn.
    NSS keeps going the way it has been there won’t be a NSS in Feb. again.
    There haven’t been huge collections of the best teams at NSS in many years.
    Or is he too afraid to go fast? We are talking about racing here… 😎

    Folk it’s here in live living color. Oxygen deprivation clearly on display.
    I’d answer this stupidity but I’d rather talk to head lice.

  60. humphry says:

    And then there was silence!

  61. We all know that Hirschman is the pride of the NY circuit, and Crazy is a local. So what do you expect?

    I’d expect a dominant driver from a different tour to run some of the races on the bigger, faster tracks, and not more of the same itty-bitty bullrings. But hey, that’s just me, and all the other cars, drivers and owners that come out of the woodwork to run New Hampshire.

  62. Regarding this race, the outside did not produce. There was an outstanding series of laps where the 51 was behind the 60, got under the 60 and passed him on the inside. There was no competitive passing from the outside. The outside was not a racing groove.

    So I just watched the race on TV, and loved listening to Ray Evernham and the other announcers talking about how Seekonk is a tiny circle. I’m having a deja vu all over again!!!

  63. At the Sizzler Melissa Fifield time trialed slower than the 5th place Late Models times in practice. This is pathetic and NASCAR needs to do something before someone gets hurt. Maybe she should consider running SK’s or SK LITES.

  64. As a refresher, did anyone else watch the race on TV the other night?

    Did it refresh your recollection that there was NO competitive position on the outside? That the track was a one groove race? Even the announcers were commenting on how brave some cars were when they tried to run the outside, and they were relieved when a car on the outside finally got in line with the train running the LOW RACING GROOVE.

    Hirschman only led those laps because the 51 had a bad restart. Otherwise, the 51 pretty much had the edge in that race. And all those itty-bitty bullring laps that JBon ran at Riverhead helped. It was a battle between two drivers with lots and lots of itty-bitty bullring experience.

    If Hirschman doesn’t win these bullring events on the Tour, he will probably never show up again for a Tour event.

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