Pit Box: Rescheduled Spring Sizzler Ready To Roll At Stafford Speedway

(Press Release from NASCAR Integrated Marketing Communications)
Justin Bonsignore (Photo: Jim DuPont/RaceDayCT)

Mother Nature just wasn’t ready to kick-off Stafford Motor Speedway’s season.

Persistent rain the Connecticut region forced officials to postpone the 48th annual NAPA Spring Sizzler weekend to May 4-5, including the fourth race of the season for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour.


Justin Bonsignore has the speed to get the job done.

After two practice sessions prior to rain last Saturday, Bonsignore made it clear he had the fastest car in the field, at least for one lap speed. He drove the No. 51 Phoenix Communications Inc. Chevrolet to the top of the speed charts in the final minutes of each session, sweeping practice, and setting himself up on a quest to score two consecutive Stafford poles.

As the 48th annual event gets set to take the green flag again, Bonsignore is hoping he can have that speed when it matters most — in the final laps of the 200-lap marathon. In 34 career starts at the half-mile, he has just 10 finishes inside the top five, and has failed to visit Victory Lane. Leading just 170 laps, the defending series champion will look to shake the monkey off his back in one of the most prestigious races in all of Modified racing, nicknamed ‘The Greatest Race in the History of the Spring’.

Doug Coby, an 11-time Stafford winner, wasn’t far behind in the two practice sessions. Coby was second in both, posting laps that were right on top of Bonsignore’s speed, and the Milford, Connecticut, driver has a long history at his home track, including multiple wins in the Spring Sizzler.

Defending Sunoco Rookie of the Year Tommy Catalano, South Boston winner Ron Silk and former Stafford pole winner Craig Lutz were the only other three drivers to post times inside the top 10 in both practice sessions. Silk has one victory in 46 Stafford starts, while Catalano and Lutz share just 13 combined starts between the two of them.

Stafford’s five NASCAR Whelen All-American Series divisions will also open their season over the course of the two-day event.


PLACEStafford Motor Speedway, Stafford, Conn.
DATESunday, May 5
TIME3:30 p.m. (approx.)
TELEVISIONFansChoice.TV, 3:30 p.m. (live streaming)
TRACK LAYOUTHalf-mile paved asphalt oval
2018 WINNERRyan Preece
2018 POLEChase Dowling
EVENT SCHEDULESaturday: Garage Opens: 9:45 a.m., Final Practice: 12:30-1 p.m., Group Qualifying: 2:30 p.m.Sunday: Garage Opens: 9:30 a.m., Autograph Session (on track): 11-12 p.m., NAPA Spring Sizzler 200: 3:30 p.m. (approx.)
TWITTER@StaffordSpeedwy, @NASCARHomeTrack



The starting field for the NAPA Spring Sizzler 200 is limited to 33 starters, including provisional positions. The first 27 drivers will secure starting positions based on the group qualifying process. The remaining six positions will be awarded through the provisional process.

NASCAR group qualifying is in place for this event. Qualifying groups determined during the rained out event last weekend will be used for this event. Each group qualifying session will be five (5) minutes in duration and the fastest single lap speed of each vehicle will determine the first 27 starting positions.

Any teams who did not attend the original race weekend will be allowed to attempt to qualify.

Adjustments or repairs may not be made on a vehicle after the vehicle enters the track to begin the qualifying session. Vehicles may not return to the track to make any further qualifying laps unless directed to do so by a NASCAR Official or in the event of a caution. Once a vehicle’s qualifying attempt is complete, the vehicle must proceed directly to the designated impound area once it enters pit road. In the event of a caution, all vehicles must exit the track.

The maximum tire allotment available for this event is eleven (11) tires per team. Four (4) tires must be used for qualifying and to begin the race. The tire change is four (4) tires, any position. Tires were impounded at Stafford and will be used this weekend. Qualifying tires will remain in impound until pre-qualifying inspection.

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