Home Cooking: Justin Bonsignore Wins Whelen Mod Tour Riverhead 200

Justin Bonsignore celebrates his Whelen Modified Tour victory Saturday at Riverhead Raceway (Photo: Will Schneekloth/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Justin Bonsignore celebrates his Whelen Modified Tour victory Saturday at Riverhead Raceway (Photo: Will Schneekloth/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Home was where the wins were in 2015 for Justin Bonsignore on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour.

Bonsignore, of Holtsville, N.Y., completed a season sweep of Modified Tour event at his home track Saturday by winning the Riverhead 200 at Riverhead (N.Y.) Raceway.

It was the second victory of the season for Bonsignore, who won the first series event of the season at Riverhead on June 28.

Doug Coby of Milford was second and rookie Chase Dowling of Roxbury was third.

Bonsignore took the lead from Dog Coby on Lap 115 and then defended the top spot over  six restarts. 

“It was a tough one that was for sure,” Bonsignore said. “A lot of good cars qualified up front tonight. The first couple [restarts] I was just persistent to stay in third and have that bottom restart. I knew I wasn’t going to get to the lead right away. That long run came and we were second. I thought Doug [Coby] still had the car to beat. And I don’t know if he just spun the tires a little bit on that restart where I was able to clear him. From there, I’ve got a lot of laps here, so to be able to pace myself and protect the bottom, definitely paid off, experience tonight. He could have easily moved me at anytime. I’ll remember that for the future.”

Bonsignore became the fifth driver in 31 years of Whelen Modified Tour racing to sweep a season with multiple events at Riverhead.

Bonsignore has scored three of his eight career Whelen Modified Tour victories at Riverhead, the track where he began racing a Modified. He got his first series victory at the track on July 30, 2011.

Series points leader Ryan Preece of Berlin was eighth. Woody Pitkat of Stafford, Preece’s closest pursuer in the standings going into the event, was seventh. Preece leads Pitkat by one point with three events remaining.

NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour-Riverhead 200 Results
At Riverhead Raceway
Riverhead, N.Y.
Lap length: 0.25 miles
(Start position in parentheses)

1. (3) Justin Bonsignore, Holtsville, N.Y., Chevrolet, 200 laps, 43.321 mph.
2. (2) Doug Coby, Milford, Conn., Chevrolet, 200.
3. (5) Chase Dowling, Roxbury, Conn., Chevrolet, 200.
4. (4) Donny Lia, Jericho, N.Y., Chevrolet, 200.
5. (17) Eric Goodale, Riverhead, N.Y., Chevrolet, 200.
6. (1) Tom Rogers, Jr., Patchogue, N.Y., Chevrolet, 200.
7. (14) Woody Pitkat, Stafford, Conn., Chevrolet, 200.
8. (12) Ryan Preece, Berlin, Conn., Chevrolet, 200.
9. (6) Todd Szegedy, Ridgefield, Conn., Dodge, 200.
10. (22) Jeff Goodale, Riverhead, N.Y., Chevrolet, 200.
11. (13) Rowan Pennink, Huntingdon Valley, Pa., Chevrolet, 200.
12. (18) Max Zachem, Preston, Conn., Chevrolet, 200.
13. (9) Patrick Emerling, Orchard Park, N.Y., Chevrolet, 200.
14. (10) Ken Heagy, Calverton, N.Y., Chevrolet, 200.
15. (11) James Civali, Meriden, Conn., Chevrolet, 199.
16. (15) Kyle Ellwood, Riverhead, N.Y., Chevrolet, 199.
17. (16) Jerry Solomito, Islip, N.Y., Chevrolet, 197.
18. (26) Gary McDonald, Ronkonkoma, N.Y., Pontiac, 197.
19. (24) Timmy Solomito, Islip, N.Y., Ford, 197.
20. (7) Shawn Solomito, Islip, N.Y., Chevrolet, 196.
21. (21) Craig Lutz, Miller Place, N.Y., Chevrolet, 170, overheating.
22. (23) Jamie Tomaino, Howell, N.J., Chevrolet, 166, black flag.
23. (20) Dave Sapienza, Riverhead, N.Y., Chevrolet, 165, tie rod.
24. (25) Wade Cole, Hartland, Conn., Chevrolet, 159, front end.
25. (19) Ed Brunnhoelzl, III, Levittown, N.Y., Chevrolet, 115, brakes.
26. (28) Johnny Bush, Huntington Station, N.Y., Troyer, 79, handling.
27. (27) Melissa Fifield, Wakefield, N.H., Chevrolet, 66, front end.
28. (8) Ron Silk, Norwalk, Conn., Chevrolet, 21, suspension.

Race Statistics
Time of Race: 1 hour 9 minutes 15 seconds
Margin of Victory: Under caution
Fastest Qualifier: T.Rogers, Jr. (75.182 mph, 11.971 seconds)
Caution Flags: 12 for 84 laps.
Lead Changes: 7 among 3 drivers.
Lap Leaders: D. Coby 1; T. Rogers, Jr. 2-12; D. Coby 13; T. Rogers, Jr. 14-23; D. Coby 24; T. Rogers, Jr. 25-36; D. Coby 37-114; J. Bonsignore 115-200.
Standings: 1. R. Preece, 495; 2. W. Pitkat, 494; 3. D. Coby, 470; 4. T. Szegedy, 437; 5. E. Goodale, 419; 6. P. Emerling, 412; 7. T. Solomito, 400; 8. D. Lia, 377; 9. J. Bonsignore, 373; 10. B. Santos, 373.


  1. No bobby santos??

  2. Now the WMT enters the end of summer break. See ya all in a month.

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