How Sweep It Is: Bobby Santos III Wins Whelen Modified Tour F.W. Webb 100 At NHMS

Bobby Santos III celebrates victory in the Whelen Modified Tour F.W. Webb 100 Saturday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway (Photo: Fran Lawlor)

LOUDON, N.H. – On July 15 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Bobby Santos discovered a low lane on the track late in the race and made it his personal freeway to the front on the way to victory in the Eastern Propane & Oil 100.

In July Santos was surprised none of his competitors settled into the same groove late in the race to slow his roll.

Saturday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway Santos hardly figured anyone would let him pull off the same ride.

Santos it seemed gave his competition too much credit.

Once again Santos went to the low lane late in the event and rode that to the front, and then held on through a late restart to win the F.W. Webb 100 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway and sweep the Whelen Modified Tour events for his Tinio Motorsports team for 2017 in Loudon.

Santos dedicated the victory to Ted Christopher, a regular on the Whelen Modified Tour who was killed in a plane crash on Sept. 16 while flying to the last series event at Riverhead (N.Y.) Raceway.

“This is for Teddy,” Santos said. “I grew up coming here and going to Thompson [Speedway] and Stafford [Motor Speedway] watching him. I think I was his biggest fan so I think he helped me win this one.”

Rowan Pennink of Huntingdon Valley, Pa. was second and Patrick Emerling of Orchard Park, N.Y. third.

Similar to the event in July, Santos spent little time during the event near the front of the field before a late charge.

“The first half of the race we were just feeling it out to see what we had for a car,” Santos said. “Obviously having the [halfway] break you know that you can build adjustability into the race car to go either direction if we have to at the break. My dad made a couple good changes at the break and I told him what I needed.”

Santos restarted around 12th on a lap 86 restart and found the low lane again to make his charge.

“I was shocked when with 15 [laps] to go in July when we were running the leaders down and no one told them to go where we were running,” Santos said. “So come back here a couple months later and 15 to go and I’m the only one doing it. It kind of surprised me again.”

By lap 90 Santos was making a dive to the low side go under then second place Doug Coby and then leader Ron Silk. A lap later Emerling moved to second.

The caution flew for a wreck involving Brendan Bock on lap 92. On the lap 97 restart Santos was able to easily check out from the field and leave them fighting for second.

“That last restart I knew I just had to hit the line that I knew would work and that if I did that we were going to drive away,” Santos said. “My dad said on the radio ‘You’re going to break the draft’ I told him ‘You’re a little crazy, you don’t break the draft at New Hampshire.’ But we broke the draft.”

Emerling battled for the lead for most of the event.

“That bottom just came in, Bobby was the first one to find it,” Emerling said. “I think he just kind of snookered us.”

Pennink was able to follow in the tracks of Santos to the front.

“We had come in and put a right front [tire] and restarted about 17th with about 15 [laps] to go,” Pennink said. “That last restart we restarted behind [Santos] on the bottom. The guy behind me made it three-wide, it might have even been four-wide. Somehow we got it all straightened out. With about a lap and a half or two to go I was able to get by those guys on the bottom. The car was awesome on the bottom.”

Before the race the 28-car field ran four-wide pace laps in remembrance of Christopher, the 2008 series champion who had Whelen Modified Tour victories at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

“It was emotional,” Santos said. “I’m one of Teddy’s biggest fans. Since I was five years old I remember going to Thompson [Speedway] watching Teddy and I grew up watching Teddy. He’s my favorite. If I’m in Indiana racing or California racing or wherever I’m racing, people ask me who’s your favorite race car driver and they think I’m going to say Tony Stewart or Jeff Gordon or one of those guys. I always say Ted Christopher, no matter what. People look at me like ‘Who is that guy?’ But he made New England Modifieds. He was New England Modifieds. He’s nationally known. The recognition he’s got this last week has been amazing and he deserved every bit of it. It’s been tough for everybody in the Modified pit. I think he knew I was his biggest fan.”


  1. Great job Bobby
    Class act ur 2

    Good job talking about TC

  2. Not bad for a part time team. Those 44 boys are having fun again. Sounds like Bobby hasn’t figured out that he is the only car that can run the white line on a rail. Amazing to watch.

    The 2 and 44 both broke the draft today. That’s not good. The 29 caution with eight to go really screwed up the making of an epic finish. Kudos to Nascar for stopping them on the backstretch.

    Next Sept is going to be a long dang race. Especially if guys sandbag until it’s money time. The track will need to put up lap money or bonuses to prevent that. I’d be happy with 125 or 150 the more I think about it. I was a little surprised none of the teams were asked for feedback for a distance that long.

    Good time at pit party on Friday. A ton of people showed.

  3. darealgoodfella says


    Bobby Santos has always been one of my favorite drivers.

  4. Liz Cherokee says

    Bottoms up boys! Melissa had a top 20 last lap finish!

  5. How many cars did not finish so she could get a top 20 and I am certain she was not on the lead lap lol………

  6. darealgoodfella says

    Eighteen lead changes at the line. How many more throughout the track?

    This is why mods are the most awesome!!!!!

    The 250 lap event should have intervals to break it up and incentivize, use them as the competition cautions. Use a 75-75-100 lap format.

    Why was there a competition caution at ~ 10 laps? Couldn’t they do that tire assessment during the practice sessions? A CC @ 10 laps is absurd and disturbing.

  7. Humphry,

    Melissa Fifield was 20th with 100 of 100 laps completed. The final car on the lead lap.

  8. Congratulations bobby

  9. Congratulations bobby I wish I was tbere

  10. The driver introductions for the modifieds was a shame. There was a cup car right inside the gate to the paddock with it’s motor running the whole time even when they gave a moment of silence for Ted and the prayer. You couldn’t hear anything. Someone should have enough respect for what was going on to shut that engine off until it was over.

  11. Actually Shawn you are incorrect. She was lapped multiple times, but was given the “lucky dog” and made up laps under caution . She did not finish 100 laps.

  12. Bye Bye Humphrey, thought you would have the facts before being certain, thanks for the facts Shawn

  13. Liz Cherokee says

    I hope one day you can all see through your prejudice and see something both beautiful and positive…

  14. darealgoodfella says

    Liz, I think that was the best finish for the 01. The previous best finish was about 3 laps down. I toldya that Loudon is her best track… lots of room and the cautions keep here from falling far behind.

    Enjoy the moment!!

  15. Seekonk Fan,
    I was referring to the official race results, as do most people when referring to that question. According to the officials results of the event she completed 100 laps and was the final car on the lead lap at the conclusion. We can argue over lucky dogs and such, but the official record will show she completed 100 laps.

  16. I was a little bummed out in July when I couldn’t go to the July race and my favorite guy won, especially when they’re only running part time. I was there yesterday. That more than made up for it! Great run and win by the Santos’, Tinios, and crew!
    Also, another great run by Pennick and Old Blue! also congrats to team Emerling, c’mon back to Connecticut for a couple more races!

  17. Are we really discussing 20th place? So, the 6 is going to win the ownership points while someone else is going to win the driver’s championship. Who is the champion in the record books? Who gets the money?

  18. darealgoodfella says

    The owner puts up the money to run the car regardless of who is driving. So the owner gets points per race.

    The driver gets points per race for driving.

    An owner can switch drivers through a season and end up with the best owners record.

    That’s why there are owner and driver champions.

    Anything else is between the owner and driver.

  19. darealgoodfella says

    Somehow, there needs to be a statistic to track the total number of lead changes at Loudon. There are many more than what happens at the line. The last few laps of this race were outstanding with cars coming up from the back and going to the front. That doesn’t happen in the other series.

    The Mods are just awesome. Can never get enough mods.

  20. Elect, bye bye really? NOT! She was laps down and I really don’t care about the official results. The lucky dog is given for the first car a lap down. So if she got the lucky dog multiple times she was a lap down multiple times. So Elect when you call someone out make certain you have your facts straight.

    Liz, no prejudice here, just calling it as I see it.

  21. There are owner/driver points listed in the standings every year.The lucky dog is also a long standing practice, you actually get your lap back.Congratulations to the 01 team on their finish and also not being the slowest anymore.100 laps at NHMS is no walk in the park.

  22. yes , Shawn you got me there, the lucky dog was first used in winston cup racing to avoid racing back to flag to avoid dangerous situations under yellow. now its so casual fans can look at the results and say “wow” 25″ cars on lead lap , must have been a great race!
    But I will admit she was just as fast as the 99,33,38 and several others,

  23. darealgoodfella says

    humphry said, “…and I really don’t care about the official results.”

    Okay, that explains things.

  24. darealgoodfella says

    The last two races are going to be real barn burners.

    Teams will be breaking out the special flux capacitors.

    No mistakes. Trouble cost the 16 today, and cost dearly. A mistake in the next two races will pretty much eliminate a car from contention.

    Having several cars in contention is rare at this point in the season.

    Has the Charlotte event been cancelled yet?

  25. Liz Cherokee says

    In a way it’s nice to see you all taking about Melissa’s fine run on Saturday… After all she has been the most popular driver on the Whelen Modified Tour for three consecutive years! Bottoms up boys!

  26. Dareal, I have said it before and I will say it again, you are a legend in your own mind.

  27. Ron silk had a good run for Jeff Rocco car/team.

  28. I know there are owner and driver standings but when was the last time we had a different owner than than the first place driver. Will the 6 get the trophy on Sunday?

    Dareal, I do believe I told you last winter there would be this many in contention. I’m not surprised at all. You are correct that these last two events will be entertaining as all get out.

  29. Where was Mad Max in the 20?

  30. Bill Realist says

    Nobody wants to talk about how Coby was choking on a hot dog while the rest of those boys were trying to win the race?

  31. darealgoodfella says

    Yeah, Silk did have a good run, glad to see him up front. And I was looking for Zachem too.

    Does anybody know what happened that shuffled the 2 so far back? I didn’t see it.

  32. Dareal said “does anybody know what happened that shuffled the 2 so far back? I didn’t see it”

    OMG stop the presses, there is something that dareal does not know about or did not see! WOW I absolutely can’t believe this is happening, lol……

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