Opening Expert: Timmy Solomito Scores Whelen Mod Tour Victory At Myrtle Beach

Timmy Solomito (Photo: Brenda Meserve)

Last year, Timmy Solomito surprised many in winning in his first career NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour event in the division’s season opening event at Thompson Speedway.

Solomito went on to score three more victories during a breakout 2016 season.

So it was hardly surprising Saturday when the Islip, N.Y. driver scored another season opening Whelen Modified Tour victory.

Solomito held off pole-sitter Rob Summers on a green-white-checkered finish to win the Whelen Modified Tour Performance Plus 150 at Myrtle Beach Speedway.

“I’ve got to hand to it to my crew, they had a great strategy,” Solomito said. “We kind of just rode in the back and saved as much tire as we could. When we came here I said: ‘This isn’t my track. I’m not really a tire saver.’ But the guys kept me calm all night and I saved it to the end when we needed it.

“We were in the right place at the right time. A couple big wrecks. Luck was definitely on our side. Sometimes it’s better to be to lucky than good, but the car was damn good and these guys did a damn good job.

“I’ve always been a driver that you put somebody in front of me, I’ll run as hard as I can to stay with them. So it was tough to tell myself to let those guys go. It was just a lot of discipline.”

Summers, of Manchester, was second and Andy Seuss of North Hampstead, N.H. third.

Summers made the move to second behind Solomito on the final restart and looked like he had a run to the inside, but Solomito was able to pull away over the final lap.

“The crew gave me such a great car right off the trailer,” said Summers, who scored his first series pole since 2001 in qualifying. “It was awesome all day. That one restart I buzzed the tires and missed a shift and got shuffled to fourth. It’s bittersweet.”

It marked the first event for the series since the former Whelen Modified Tour was merged into the Whelen Modified Tour.

“We’re real happy with this,” said Seuss, a two-time Southern Whelen Modified Tour champion who was making his 38th career Whelen Modified Tour start. “It’s a stout field. When NASCAR merged the tours, we’ve got the best in the country here. To come away with a podium is really good.”


  1. Sounds like summers recked about 10 cars on two bad restarts while leading late. Tough day for preece team. First trailer door lift breaks and they have to bring in a crane to get the car out. First I’ve heard of that happening and then they have an air gun go bad on a pit stop. Very good showing of top teams at the first race. Very interested to see how many south team travel north.

  2. Franky you got that right. Summers claimed he missed a shift and buzzed the tires. Sure looked like to me he tried to squeeze the 2nd place car into the wall on the restart, resulting in many destroyed racecars. There is a reason he is a has been, or many a never was.

  3. Kevin Farris says

    As a northern transplant, growing up as a Stafford speedway brat, I love the modified. Since my only option was the NWSMT, until it dissipated this year, I am more than upset with the unified tour. Sure, most races are North at great tracks, but the Southern drivers can’t bare that cost all season, so its SMRS for them and Bowman Gray. Thank God we got the 150 on May 13th at Langley, that will be a great race, what a great track for Modifieds. I’ve really gotten to know some of the Southern Modified guys and drivers like George Brunhoezzel, Andy Suess, Burt Myers to name but a few, are very good also but get no acclaim. Yes, Summers did kill the field. He cost Suess a shot at the win, Myers too and dumped Jeremy Gerstner as he was heading for second out of turn 1 with 15 remaining and got clobbered. He was running up front all day, led, and I believe would have won or finished second at the least. Lia, Silk and Hirschmann were all great, but ended up like Gerstner. Solomito ran a good race, but without the late demolition derby, he doesn’t win in Myrtle Beach. The

  4. Jap,really? Tried to force the car into the outside wall on the restart? It is plain and simple, he spun the tires, everyone scattered or checked up and the pig pile started. Has been, never was? Let’s call a spade a spade, most boring WMT race I have ever seen. Running around in circles at half throttle is not what I call racing.

  5. Liz Cherokee says

    This Timmy Stolimoto is very, very smooth… indeed! Cheers to the start of another modified season!

  6. go rowan pennick # one fan clib

  7. club

  8. For a race that was in the south you would think that the southern guys would show up but no must cost to much to travel or maybe they realize they have no chance.

  9. The southern modified racing series raced at caraway the next day and some teams choose to race in that series. The same thing could be said for Chris pasteryak how raced at caraway an not myrtle beach.

  10. darealgoodfella says

    Well, looks like the combined Tour is a bust. Only 4 non-northern cars showed up at a southern venue. Looks like Garbarino was right when he said the southern cars don’t want to travel across the street to race. Only 29 cars in the race, a combined series, not very good. Looks like a dozen or so southern teams shut down. Very revealing that only 4 southern cars showed up in their own backyard. Very doubtful that any southern car will complete the entire schedule. It will be interesting to see who shows up at Thompson.

    The Langley and Charlotte (non-points) events need to be canceled, or moved up north. Unless they are paying a fortune to show to assure a respectable attendance. But where would that show money come from?

    The south needs to realize that there is no market for Modifieds down there.

  11. Fast Eddie says

    I think there would have been more southern cars there if not for the SMRS rainout the weekend before at Caraway NC. Some that were originally considering Myrtle Beach may have gone the NC makeup instead.

  12. Summers did wreck all those race cars.
    One restart the drove right up the track into the 7ny on purpose no spinning the tires on that one.
    The very next restart he tried to do the same thing to the 16 and the result was the same, a bunch of wrecked cars.
    Summers was going to do what ever it took to win. I really didn’t think he had to do that to win.
    No spinning the tires on either restart Summers just turned right.

  13. crazy larry says

    No warmup lap at all !!!!!!!!!!!!!!.
    Clean up crew sucked !!!!!!

    Get race done now !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Bad race !!!
    No winner there pure luck #16

  14. wmass01013 says

    CANT ANYBODY just enjoy a race!!!!!!!!!!
    NOBODY with AN IQ above 2 thought any southern team would run the full schedule, BOWMAN GRAY is there DEAL
    29 cars good in my book
    season 1 race old and allllll bitchin wowwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww

  15. This doesn’t seem like a combined tour to me.I guess it might be wise to hold our tongues untill the Icebreaker but I think only a few southern teams will make some races in New England.Langley and the joke at Charlotte should be cancelled.It seems to me only a few southern teams can compete on this tour, hell what kind of turnout would SWMT have had without all the northern guys hauling down south.BTW Franky, Pastreyak never runs the tour so where he chose to go doesn’t really compare I think.

  16. Franky, Chris Pasteryak’s car is not a WMT car and he does not run the tour. That is why he was not at Myrtle Beach.

  17. Bill Realist says

    Nobody wants to talk about Coby being non competitive?

  18. darealgoodfella says

    Bill Realist says: “Nobody wants to talk about Coby being non competitive?”

    Don’t worry, the flux capacitor will be back in the car for Thompson.

    🤣 😝 🤗 ⚡️

  19. Bill,fasten your chinstrap for Thompson the 2 among others will be lightning fast as usual.Can’t wait!

  20. Fast Eddie says

    The 2 had some competition last year which I hope will only increase this year. There were about 5-6 teams from NY and NJ that ran the WSMT; hopefully they will run some of the races up here. And Andy Seuss will hopefully run some; he’s a local (NH) for goodness sake! {;-) I wonder if any of the southern teams might try to double up when an MTS or TTOMS race is close to a WMT date. 7/21 (MTS Stafford) and 7/22 (WMT Speedbowl) would be a good weekend for it, and there are others when the dates are within a couple of days. Hey Dixie teams, c’mon up for some lobstah, chowah, & beeahh!!!!! {;-)

  21. I guess luck is good!

  22. wmass01013 says

    YES the 2018 tour should be 5 races at Thompson, 5 races at Stafford, 3 races at Waterford and 1 race At New Hampshire!

  23. crazy larry says

    (wmass01013) BINGO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! let’s go racing 2018 Make the tour great again!!
    Less traveling cost .

  24. old observer says

    Not many positive comments here.
    Please think about the good things that happened at Myrtle Beach.
    Lots of different leaders & pit strategy, good car count by today’s standards, a new track in a nice area.
    Hope Langley is a nice place to race also.
    I know it wasn’t perfect but it beat waiting 2 more weeks to race where everyone will be complaining about the $$,car count, weather, to many races, to few races, lower divisions or anything else just to have something negative to say.(it is hard not to use censored words).
    See everyone at Thompson and hope all have a great time.
    Remember we all do this for FUN.

  25. Fast Eddie says

    To 01013, how about two NHMS events and two Seekonk events added to your schedule version?

  26. darealgoodfella says

    wmass01013, how about 1 race at Waterford, and at least 2 at New Hampshire.

    The teams definitely like New Hampshire far more than Waterford.

  27. What happened to riverhead in this great fantasy schedule.You guys will have me on 95 all season.BTW I think Wall should be as far south as the tour should go.It’s a long ride to Bristol to treated the way nascar does the mods at that venue.It certainly is a great track for mods but we all see what constantly goes on down there.Who needs it!

  28. What about Riverhead? And let’s step back in time, what about a Southern race at Martinsville either in the spring or fall? They now have lights and a Saturday night race there would be the ticket. When the tour went there it was some of the best racing there was, great car turn out and the competition was top shelf. That grandfathers clock has to be one of the best trophies you can ever have.

  29. Humphry,Martinsville is definitely a great track for mods but if they weren’t the top draw I would not make the trip.I’m only going to NHMS in July because it’s multi day but even then we have to put up with time limits and no pit stops.If modified fans stop going there the place would be totally empty on Friday and barely better on Saturday.

  30. Bristol is no different than NH Art, look at last years race, complete disaster. It’s time to cut the ties there as it is way too expensive to make the trip and even if you win you still can’t cover the expenses. I think another great venue was Richmond for the mods always was a good show.

    NASCAR has this series in a tail spin and unless they don’t get back to its “roots” the outcome will be disastrous.

  31. Excuse me, unless they get back to its roots, fat fingers, lol……….

  32. darealgoodfella says

    I’ve been to several Bristol races, and when it’s good, it’s really good. There are many races at Bristol that were disasters, and just plain sucked. Some real amateur mistakes. I’ve been to Bristol when it was really good, and it was worth it. It’s a gamble.

    I agree with art… people show at NHMS for the Mod race, stay for whatever else is there.

  33. wmass01013 says

    My View is that any track can have good or bad races. I love modifieds and competition so I don’t get into the north vs south teams or WMT VS MRS OR ROC feuds, we all know who are the teams and drivers with the most talent but every race is different and I like when someone new challenges them, so no matter if NHMS, STAFFORD MYRTLE BEACH OR OSWEGO LETS just race and enjoy!!!

  34. Liz Cherokee says

    Anyone know when the voting for the 2017 WMT Most Popular Driver starts?

  35. Way to stir the pot Liz.Hopefully we can have early results on “most improved”

  36. Fast Eddie says

    Hey wmass, DITTO!! The contender who is having the best day (or night) at a particular race is the winner!

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