Donny Lia To Miss Upcoming Whelen Modified Tour Event At Riverhead Raceway

Donny Lia celebrates victory in the Whelen Modified Tour Fall Final 150 last year Stafford Speedway (Photo: Darren McCollester/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Donny Lia celebrates victory in the Mystic Missile at the Whelen Modified Tour Fall Final 150 last year Stafford Speedway (Photo: Darren McCollester/Getty Images for NASCAR)

When it comes to recognizable cars on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, few have had more of an impact than Bob Garbarino’s Mystic Missile.

But the familiar yellow No. 4, with its driver Donny Lia, will not be in the field when the series heads to Riverhead (N.Y.) Raceway on Sept. 13.

Garbarino, of Mystic, announced Thursday that his team will skip the event at Riverhead. Garbarino told NASCAR Hometracks that the decision to skip the event is: “based solely upon trying to break the team’s run of bad luck this season.”

Lia has not been running at the end of six of the 10 events this season due to crashes or mechanical issues. Lia is currently 12th in the Whelen Modified Tour standings.

Garbarino’s team has raced regularly on the Whelen Modified Tour since the division’s inception in 1985 and the team has started every series event since 1989.

“Hopefully we’re just going to break the chain of bad luck, that’s really all there is to it,” Garbarino said. “We’ve got to find a way to get rid of this. We’ve got to do something to shake ourselves up here.

“… We’re just doing it to see if we can shake this monkey.”

The team is expected to return to action for the Whelen Modified Tour F.W. Webb 100 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Sept. 20.

Garbarino has been fielding a NASCAR Modified team since 1962, with a who’s list of some of the best Modified drivers behind the wheel for him.

Lia got Garbarino his first Whelen Modified Tour championship in 2007 and picked up a second title with the team in 2009. Bobby Santos III won a series title for Garbarino in 2010.

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  1. Al Sharpstien says

    I suggest Mr Garbarino be careful with the use of the use of the word ‘monkey’ before the politically correct police in Daytona slap him with racial suspension…

  2. How do you shake a monkey off if you don’t race . With a driver who knows Riverheadraceway very well, just surprised

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