Streaking: Ryan Preece Gets Second Straight Whelen Mod Tour Win In TSI Harley-Davidson 125 At Stafford

Ryan Preece celebrates victory in the Whelen Modified Tour TSI Harley-Davidson 125 Friday at Stafford Motor Speedway (Photo: Darren McCollester/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Ryan Preece celebrates victory in the Whelen Modified Tour TSI Harley-Davidson 125 Friday at Stafford Motor Speedway (Photo: Darren McCollester/Getty Images for NASCAR)

STAFFORD – Last Saturday at the New London-Waterford Speedbowl Ryan Preece and his TS Haulers team got to celebrate their first Whelen Modified Tour victory together.

Friday the party only continued at Stafford Motor Speedway.

In dominating fashion, Preece rolled to victory in the Whelen Modified Tour TSI Harley-Davidson 125 at Stafford Speedway Friday.

Preece, the 2013 Whelen Modified Tour champion, is in his first season driving for the Ed and Connie Partridge owned TS Haulers team.

“It was cool when Eddie [Partridge] came over the radio and said ‘Man I’m happy I hooked up with you.’” Preece said. “We’re racing, we’re having a good time. Times like this aren’t always happening. You aren’t going to win every race and you aren’t going to run good every race, but we’re going to try and right now we’re obviously having a ball.”

Woody Pitkat of Stafford was second and Timmy Solomito of Islip, N.Y. third.

Preece led most of the event, but had to use a dramatic run back to the front after pitting with most of the leaders on lap 104.

Preece was fifth for the lap 107 restart and went motoring to the front, passing Bobby Santos for the top spot on lap 108. He never trailed again.

“Those guys on the pit stop, three tires, came out really good,” Preece said. “They did a great job. Got us where we needed to be. [On the restart], as soon I was coming off of [turn two my spotter Shawn Waddell] told me I was clear coming out of [turn] two of [Donny Lia.]. I went to the top, drove by and every hole that opened I knew I had to take advantage of it because you never know if you’re going to get yellows like we did. If I didn’t get the lead like I did, what would have happened? I’m happy. The car had grip for me to do everything. Every piece of the puzzle is there and we’re just trying to make it better and better. I’m really happy where I’m at.”

On the final restart of the event on lap 123, Pitkat was fourth behind Preece, Solomito and Santos respectively. On the final lap Pitkat made a daring move under Solomito in turn three to take the runner-up spot.

“I had a good run,” Pitkat said. “I kind of set him up in [turns] one and two, and got a good run down the back straightaway and sealed it down there. Made eight wheels out of four. It was good. He can do it me one night when he’s better than me. It’s all good.”

Said Solomito: “We knew it was going to be aggressive toward the end there. … I did the best I could. I’m just starting to learn with all these guys. I don’t get to race them a lot. Last year we ran fifth through 10th. This year we’re starting to run up toward the front and we’re starting learn a lot more.”

It was the sixth consecutive finish of sixth or better in Whelen Modified Tour events at Stafford for Pitkat, who came into the night having won the last two series events at the half-mile oval.

“We’re still trying to figure out this new car,” Pitkat said. “We’ve got to just keep working on it. Obviously [Preece] is real fast right now. We’re trying to keep up with him.”

Preece extended the points lead he came into the event holding by getting maximum points by leading the most laps. Pitkat moved to second in the standings past Doug Coby, who was 13th after a late penalty dropped him out of the top-five. Preece will go to the Mr. Rooter 161 at Thompson Speedway Wednesday with an eight point advantage in the standings over Pitkat.

“We maximized everything we could today,” Preece said. “This car is phenomenal. … When I stepped on that pedal it just drove off the corner. That makes it a lot of fun for me.”

Coby, who came into the event trailing Preece by one point in the standings. goes to Thompson third in the points battle, 17 behind Preece.


  1. Drag Racer says

    Way to go spotter Shawn Waddell.

  2. Preece was on rails last night. He looked great in the SK race, but Pennink was simply incredible once he got in front. Great crowd, too!

  3. NH Mod Chaser says

    That new Troyer ROCKS !!!

  4. This big dollar SPEC motors and massaged SPEC motor carburetors are pretty impressive.

  5. Hey, I thought the SPEC motor was supposed to bring parity to the division?

  6. The race was shameful. The race was a perfect demonstration of how and why the SPEC motor is a total failure. The same cars that have been the contenders in the past years before the SPEC engine are the same cars that are the contenders today, but with SPEC engines. And the gap between the contenders that are running the SPEC engine and the non-contenders that are running built engines has gotten WAY bigger.

    So how did the SPEC motor help the Modified division? How is the SPEC motor helping the Modified series? How did this help the non-contenders become contenders? Why aren’t the perennial non-contenders, the low budget teams, running the alleged low-cost SPEC motor so they can be competitive? Where are all these cars that were in storage that were expected to run with a “low cost” SPEC motor? I haven’t seen any, and I’ve been to all races.

    I would think a team like the 3 would pounce on a high performance, low-cost power plant. They didn’t. They are a great team, very competitive when engine enabled.

    Well, only the well funded teams can afford the “low cost” SPEC motor, so only the well funded teams are running the SPEC motor. That doesn’t make sense. The SPEC was sold to the division as a power plant that would reduce cost and get more cars. Well, that hasn’t happened. Car counts have been better, but those additional cars are running built engines. Only the top contenders are running the SPEC motor, and those teams also happen to be the teams that focus on performance at any cost.

    So I ask, is the SPEC motor a cost reduction program, or a performance option that teams effectively must run in order to compete?

    The built motors are now worthless. Go offer an owner of a built motor a few bucks over scrap value and go racing. The bottom half of the NWMT and other series depend on these motors in the second-hand market. These engines will go away soon if the SPEC motor proliferates. Then all these other Modified series will have to find a new power plant or also adopt the SPEC engine.

    A SPEC engine has no second hand market value. When a SPEC engine is no longer competitive, it is no longer serviceable. It’s over, done, garbage.

    The SPEC engine experiment is a total failure. Not only a failure, it is a detriment to the Modified Tour, and the established base of engine builders. After all, the SPEC engine, and most of its service needs, can only be supplied or performed by Robert Yates Racing Engines.

    And the mandatory breaks in the races at Loudon are to allow the SPEC motor cars to refuel. Those SPEC motors burn more fuel, they are pigs. So NASCAR favors their sacred SPEC engine and puts a mandatory intermission in the Loudon races to accommodate and enable the SPEC motors.

    Thanks NASCAR for totally screwing our favorite racing series.

    And where is Whelen in all of this? I can’t believe the sponsors are silent on this.

    Modified Car Owners, “I can’t afford NASCAR’s cost savings.”

  7. I think nascar would tell you car counts are up due to the spec motor. Look at all these cars from the island that are showing up this year. Without them you’d have a 20 car field.

  8. rich, please explain the cause-and-effect analysis that connects the rather large and sudden participation of Long Island cars running in the Tour to the SPEC motor, and why these cars have not or would not have participated with a built motor. There are plenty of idle cars in New England that are still idle although the SPEC motor is available. What gives with the Long Island cars? Is the economy picking up on Long Island enabling these Long Island based teams to afford the SPEC engine?

    The lack of discussion of the SPEC engine debacle is very disturbing. It demonstrates the complete totalitarian and authoritarian control, and total lack of concern for the team owners.

    You all need to understand that the SPEC motor deal is totally out of control, completely off the rails. No SPEC motor will ever be found in violation of the rules. NEVER. It will never happen no matter how badly the rules were violated. The sanctioning body will not allow a SPEC engine violation to be public. Look at the 88 car deal… car ran away with the race, it was untouchable. Engine confiscated and no performance issue was found. Something silly like a bolt was used instead of a stud is what was reported, no performance impact. LOL!!! But now we are racing SPEC engine carburetors. LOL!!!! The real racing now is how to get the SPEC engine, that already has a HUGE weight benefit, and power and torque advantages, to be even better. These SPEC engines and carburetors are being massaged to the tune of enormous $$$$$$$, totally defeating the purpose of the low cost SPEC engine program. And the SPEC engine car is allowed to be lighter!!!!! Why not let the SPEC engine cars use a little nitromethane while we’re at it?

    And let’s not forget that the SPEC engine, parts and critical machining can only be provided and performed by Robert Yates Racing Engines. Per NASCAR rules.

    The SPEC engine and the monopoly around it is real bad for Modified racing, make that all racing.

  9. “Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” -Abraham Lincoln

  10. Thought it was a great show on Friday, every serious was competitive. Ryan preece was to fast. Timmy almost pulled it off.

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