Redemption Night: Ryan Preece Bounces Back For Tour Type Modified Victory At New Smyrna

Ryan Preece celebrates victory Tuesday following the Tour Type Modified feature at New Smyrna Speedway (Photo: Jim DuPont)

Florida in February for those from Connecticut is supposed to be about happy moments and good times.

But there’s been little sunny about the Sunshine State the past few days for Berlin’s Ryan Preece.

But Tuesday night at the World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing Preece righted all the wrongs.

Preece led from lap 14 on and pulled away from Matt Hirschman over the closing stages to win the 35-lap Tour Type Modified feature Tuesday at New Smyrna Speedway.

“When you beat that guy right there … that’s saying something,” Preece said of Hirschman, who won Saturday’s Tour Type Modified event at Bronson Speedway. “All these guys behind me, they’ve been working their butts off all week. We haven’t made it easy on them. … It’s just awesome. This is definitely the way I wanted to start [Monday]. But to be able to do it the next day, that’s a little bit more sweeter.”

Preece’s Florida week began with a wild wreck in practice at Bronson Speedway on Saturday. Monday, in the first night of Tour Type Modified action at New Smyrna, Preece led most of the way in the 50-lap feature before a mechanical failure ended his night late.

“We’ve done our homework,” Preece said. “… I don’t want any luck. I want to make my own way to victory lane and ultimately we started fourth, we got holes, we got some breaks, but we earned our way here. That crew right there is the one who earned our way here.”

Hirschman, of Northampton, Pa., was second and Jimmy Blewett of Howell, N.J. third.

Preece went by Hirschman for the lead on lap 14 and never trailed again.

“I knew I had a really good car,” Preece said. “[Hirschman] was better than me in some places but I was better than him in a few places. Ultimately , the hole opened up, I got a good enough run, got under him and once I got in front we were just kind of there even and then we were just able to inch away, inch away, inch away. We had a good enough car for 35 laps.”

Said Hirschman: “I just need to get a little bit better. … Bottom line is we just need to be better. The car is not quite to me liking. We still were the class of the field with Ryan and I, but we’ve got room to improve for sure.”

Jon McKennedy of Chelmsford, Mass., scored victory on the opening night of Modified racing at the World Series on Monday.

Listen to Ryan Preece talk about his expectations for 2018 with the Whelen Modified Tour and the XFINITY Series on a recent episode of the Unmuffled podcast on RaceDayCT.

For a pledge of just $5 a month at the RaceDayCT Pateron Page you’ll have access to all of our weekly Unmuffled broadcasts and our Unmuffled Quickcast podcast shorts.


  1. Thanks to Jason for mentioning the race could be viewed on
    Preece as expected back in the winners circle happy once again but not without some drama at the start of the race with some dented bumpers and dicey moves. A wreck knocking out some good cars including last nights winner McKennedy who had to start last because of a tech issue but was fast and moving up. Preece and Hischman. Does it get any better then that in a 35 lap shootout.
    Watching the modifieds did not come without a heavy cost sad to say. A fight broke out on pit lane at the end of the Super Late Model race as the camera caught some chunky old dudes rolling around on the asphalt. Then the camera capturing a full moon, and not the good kind in the sky. The horror but with the moon between the cameraman and the fight it was impossible to look away. No harm, no foul as everyone was OK excepting the mental images that will be hard to forget. That for this old race fan was a first I hope never to repeat.
    Can’t wait until tomorrow night.

  2. McKennedy started 9th due to the re-draw not tech issues. He definitely did not start last………

  3. Here is what I think I heard while watching the race.
    McKennedy qualified 2nd and was placed to 9th after the inversion. After he wrecked he was interviewed and confirmed himself that due to a tech issue he had to start scratch. He also said he was not sure if the car could be fixed for the next race which is obviously tonight. I think that’s what I actually saw as best I can recall. The announcers mentioned that they had missed it. I’ve tried to find his starting position but it isn’t shown anywhere so if someone has it please share.
    I don’t really care so much if he started scratch or not but I am curious to see if my memory is totally shot.

  4. Yes Mckennedy started scratch, he mentioned during the post crash interview that he’d picked up 10 positions before wrecking.

  5. That’s a relief. Thanks Q.
    Anyway the entire race should be available in the next 24 hours on for those that may be curious.
    Interesting tidbit. Preece thanked Robert Yates Racing engines for the power so unless they do built engines I guess that means the 6 uses the spec engine exclusively.

  6. Don’t forget if you have an internet connection you can tune into at 7:30 and see the races tonight at New Smyrna including the tour type modifieds for free. Super Late Models are first again and then 76 laps for the guys we follow.
    And not just some 15 car mishmash of a field with only a couple names we know. Top Northeast teams from all the best tours in a 30ish car field. ROC, VMRS, NWMT teams with a few southern teams thrown in. Seriously where can we see all this crossover and spec vs built engines like Preece vs McKennedy. Could it be a foreshadowing of what we’ll see at the Stafford Open modified shows? Less the spec motors obviously. Still don’t get that decision. Not to late to change the rules Stafford. All the top NWMT guys are using them apparently.

  7. I heard coil binding was illegal so they got tossed out. I thought they went by tour rules? High car counts yes but pretty much the same show up front. Preece Hossfeld Hirschman. The 58 is a turd for some reason this year. They were fast last year but not a factor this year.

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