Doug Coby Keeps Up Streaking Ways In Whelen Modified Tour At Stafford With Another Victory

STAFFORD – Chasing one bonus point in the standings for Doug Coby left the rest of the competition on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour hopelessly chasing him Friday at Stafford Motor Speedway.

Doug Coby Celebrates at Stafford Speedway (Photo: Corey Sipkin/NASCAR)

The magic carpet ride that has been Coby’s 2012 season on the Whelen Modified Tour kept flying at warp speed Friday as Coby ran away with his fourth victory in seven races this year in the Stafford 150 at Stafford Speedway.

Coby, of Milford, inherited the lead under caution on lap 49 and led the rest of the way, checking out from the field in the late stages.

Jimmy Blewett of Howell, N.J. was second, a distant 2.508 seconds behind at the checkered flag. Todd Szegedy of Ridgefield was third.

Coby has won all three Whelen Modified Tour events at Stafford this season, also capturing the Tech-Net Spring Sizzler on April 29 and the TSI Harley-Davidson 125 on May 25. Coby also won the Mr. Rooter 161 at the Waterford Speedbowl on June 23.

“Even if we don’t win a championship, we won four freaking tour races in a year,” Coby said. “This is just the coolest thing ever, If it ends it ends.”

Coby is in his first season running full-time for car owner Wayne Darling. He split time last year in a car owned by Darling and with a team put together by Harvey Berube and Kevin Crowley.

With chasing a championship definitely on the mind, Coby and his team decided to stay out on the track when most of the leaders headed to pit road on lap 49, moving him from second place behind Eric Beers to the lead.

“We were going to come in early but we wanted to lead a lap,” Coby said. “So when [Eric Beers] came in we said ‘We’ll stay out and lead a lap and maybe come in at 100 [laps] or so.’ And we got no more cautions. This car is built to last on the long run. I think everybody saw that in the [Spring] Sizzler and the [TSI Harley-Davidson 125] that we know we can go at least 100 [laps] on these tires, if not more.”

The final caution of the race flew on lap 83, playing right into the hands of Coby and his team. It was a similar fate in May at Stafford when Coby suffered a flat tire just as caution came out to save him from going down laps.

“It’s getting fun,” Coby said. “Some of my very good friends who have watched me through Late Models and Pro Stocks were here with their kids and I said to them ‘When did this ever turn my way?’ Things always go the opposite way for me, especially in Tour cars.

“Things go our way. It’s crazy. When we needed a caution when we got the flat in the last race here we got a caution and came in and changed it. Here, I think if I had a caution I would have got maybe roughed up a little bit. On the restarts I was really tight, but wiggly at the same time so if anybody wanted to get aggressive with me they probably had a shot to move me.”

With crew chief Ed Bennett working his first event with the team, Blewett ran to his best finish of the season.

“I can’t thank Ed enough for stepping up to the plate for me,” Blewett said. “My [former] crew chief, Kevin Crowley, he had to step aside due to family purposes. I can’t thank Ed enough for stepping on board with us. You’re only as good as your car is sometimes and my crew guys works their hearts out week in and week out.

“Last week we were sitting there with no crew chief, this week we’re sitting here with a second place finish.”

Coby extended his points lead at the top of the standings to 41 points over Ryan Preece, who moved from third to second in the standings with a sixth place finish. Reigning series champion Ron Silk had mechanical issues and finished 22nd of 27 starters, fell to third in the standings, 43 behind Coby.

Despite the series domination thus far this season, Coby was still hesitant to start thinking about raising a championship trophy.

“It doesn’t matter what happens now, it’s August 3 and we still have half the schedule left,” Coby said. “These guys are good, [Ryan] Preece and [Ron] Silk and [Todd] Szegedy and Jimmy [Blewett], they’re all running up front every week and we have to keep doing that too.”

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