Pit Box: Whelen Modified Tour Season Hits Halfway Point at Riverhead Raceway


(Press Release from NASCAR Integrated Marketing Communications)

Justin Bonsignore (Photo: Jim DuPont/RaceDayCT)

With seven races down, and nine remaining, the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour season will hit the halfway point on Saturday at Riverhead Raceway.

The first of two annual stops at the historic bullring will put some of the best of the Whelen Modified Tour up against the top local talent of Riverhead’s NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Modified division.

What better way to spend a Saturday night? Watch NASCAR’s top modified talent compete in the tight corners of Riverhead while leaning on each other chasing the checkered flag.


BUZZ CHEW CHEVROLET CADILLAC 200 at RIVERHEAD RACEWAY

Justin Bonsignore has Riverhead Raceway figured out.

The Holtsville, New York, driver is no stranger to Victory Lane at his home track. After competing in the local Modified division prior to his step up to the Whelen Modified Tour, Bonsignore has been successful driving for Kenneth Massa Motorsports. He has won five of the last eight tour races the New York oval, including sweeping both events last year, where he led 126 of 400 laps, and qualified on the front row for both races. His worst starting position in his six career wins at Riverhead is seventh.

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But Bonsignore isn’t the only driver in the field with previous success at Riverhead that ran in the Whelen All-American Series division. Timmy Solomito has won the three events in the last eight that Bonsignore didn’t, leading 378 of 600 laps contested in his victories. Last year, the Islip, New York, driver was at the front of the field for 69 laps in September, before settling for second.

Multiple Riverhead Whelen All-American Series regulars will also compete in the Buzz Chew Chevrolet Cadillac 200 on Saturday. Mike Rutkoski, a former Crate Modified champion at Riverhead, will compete in the No. 88 for Buzz Chew. Roger Turbush, a winner this year in the Division I Modified class, will drive the No. 88 for Pat Kennedy. Both John Fortin and J.B. Fortin, two drivers who have competed at Riverhead weekly for many years, are also entered. J.B. Fortin is chasing Sunoco Rookie of the Year honors on the Whelen Modified Tour this season.

Filling-in for the injured Dave Sapienza, former series competitor Frank Vigliarolo Jr. returns to action. The Medford, New York, driver has a best finish of second in tour action, back in 2004.

RACE FACTS

RACEBUZZ CHEW CHEVROLET CADILLAC 200
PLACERiverhead Raceway, Riverhead, New York
DATESaturday, July 6
TIME8 p.m. (approx.)
TELEVISIONFansChoice.TV, 8 p.m. (live streaming)
TRACK LAYOUTQuarter-mile paved oval
2018 WINNERJustin Bonsignore
2018 POLEJustin Bonsignore
EVENT SCHEDULEGarage Opens: 12:45 p.m., Final Practice: 3:15-4:30 p.m., Qualifying: 6 p.m., Riverhead 200: 8 p.m.
TWITTER@NASCARHomeTrack, @RiverheadRacewy
HASHTAG#NWMT

RACE CENTER | ENTRY LIST

CREW CHIEF HANDOUT: 

The starting field for the Buzz Chew Chevrolet Cadillac 200 is 28 starters, including provisional positions. The first 22 drivers will secure starting positions through the qualifying process. The remaining six positions will be awarded through the provisional process.

Two consecutive qualifying laps will set the starting field. Faster lap determines starting position. Adjustments or repairs may not be made on the vehicle after the vehicle has taken the green flag. NASCAR reserves the right to have more than one vehicle engage in qualifying runs at the same time. Vehicles will be impounded after qualifying and must qualify on race set up. After qualifying, all vehicles will proceed immediately to the impound area. Only minor adjustments will be permitted following qualifying.

The maximum tire allotment available for this event is eight (8) tires per team. Four (4) tires must be used for qualifying and to begin the race. The tire change rule is zero (0) tires, any position.



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Comments

  1. This is where JBon and Silk can make some gains on Coby.

    Hope the weather cooperates.

  2. Where’s the 15?

  3. Where’s the all-important R&D car? The 15 has run only once this year. How can R&D happen if the R&D car isn’t running?

    This Riverhead event is going to be pretty good. Procedure says 28 cars start, there are 32 on the entry list. Good to see a Buzz Chew car back on the list.

  4. I see Jukasa Speedway is going to have a $10k to win ROC modified race; do any New England Tour Type Modifieds try this race? I believe the track is like Thompso.

  5. Gotta give Riverhead credit. When they say tour modifieds they mean NWMT tour modified. No separate rules for them, no sir ree. A link to the NASCAR rules page and it’s off to the races with about 15 cars weekly. That kind of qualifies them as a unicorn given the modern realities of weekly racing doesn’t it? On the other end of the spectrum their crate rules are some of the most brutally restrictive around.
    I count 5 locals (points standings) Brunnhoelzl, III (17), Turbish (11), Rogers (2),John Fortin (3), Rutkoski (13). Noticeably missing is 2019, 5 time winner Kyle Soper who has entered the race previously and done well. 5 cars is pretty impressive isn’t it? John Fortin and Rogers broke the top 10 in the two races last year and promise to be very competitive.
    Sapienza picking Vigliarolo Jr for his Riverhead fill in driver? Interesting choice. The 36 was very impressive last year garnering a 4th and 5th so expectations should be high I would think.
    Cautions have been mentioned by a few lately and how they’re handled with entry to the pits. Here’s a stat that may blow your mind. Last year in this race there were only 3 cautions for 21 laps with 30 cars. Man that’s a lot of cars on a quarter mile track. In September only 4 cautions for 29 laps.
    Sketchy weather Saturday night but it’s too early to worry and Sunday’s rain date looks ideal.

  6. Crazy in NY says:

    I see Jukasa Speedway is going to have a $10k to win ROC modified race; do any New England Tour Type Modifieds try this race? I believe the track is like Thompso.

    As a matter of fact I was talking this morning with the ROC promoter and asked if any non ROC regulars had contacted him about the race. None was his response. It’s a looooong way for a NE based team to go for 10k cdn which is really 7600 US. Tour owners don’t support TTOM 10k at Seekonk so Jukasa ain’t gonna happen. They chase the NASCAR points and are satisfied with that I guess. The track is absolutely beautiful now and a Tour race should be scheduled there IMHO. Fast as hell ,well lit and oh so clean. We’ll see how the show goes on the 13th. Stay tuned.

  7. Worcester Ma Derek Ramstrom ran the SLM race there last summer, so not that far too travel.

  8. wmass01013 says:

    I don’t get why teams in 2019 do not chase Big dollar races, maybe the WMT guys are happy with the payouts and Point fund $$$ THE WMT hands out, we dont see the payouts anymore so its hard to know. I don’t know if the passing of Phil Kurze has affected Whelen’s payout on the WMT, I know before last year they raised the winners share to make MOST WMT races pay $1O.000 PLUS TO THE WINNER
    2018, Whelen drastically increased an integral part of its support system for the tour by upping each race winner’s bonus from $500 all the way to $3,500. The purse increase now sets up one of the highest paying Tour Modified events in New York State this season and also the highest paying Modified race in Classic Weekend history at Oswego. Saturday, September 1 will mark the third consecutive appearance by the tour at the ‘Steel Palace.’
    “In conjunction with the folks at NASCAR and Whelen Engineering, we are thrilled to announce that this September’s event for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour will now pay $12,000 to win and $1,000 to start for all competitors,” said speedway PR director Camden Proud. “The increased purse has made for the highest paying NASCAR Modified race in Oswego Speedway’s storied history and should attract several additional teams across the region.”

  9. Just Me says:

    No R&D car for the 15 car, too busy with getting the new business up and running.

    RIVERHEAD PURSE BREAKDOWN 1st – $4,000 7th – $1,300 13th – $850 19th – $600 23rd – $600 2nd – $2,250 8th – $1,200 14th – $750 20th – $600 24th – $600 3rd – $2,000 9th – $1,100 15th – $700 21st – $600 25th – $600 4th – $1,700 10th – $1,100 16th – $650 22nd – $600 26th – $600 5th – $1,500 11th – $1,000 17th – $600 27th – $600 6th – $1,400 12th – $900 18th – $600 28th – $600
    BONUS PLANS
    $11,000 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Bonus Plan is to be paid to any of the Top 25 eligible car owners as follows: 1st through 10th-$500 each, 11th through 25th-$400 each. Eligible car owners are those who are ranked in the Top 40 of the current 2019 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Championship car owner point standings, regardless of overall finish in the event. Eligible car owners must enter the event, attempt to qualify and attempt to compete in the race. If the event is postponed any car that has qualified for the postponed race must return and attempt to compete in the event to be eligible for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Bonus Plan. If the eligible car owner’s car does not return, the car will be considered withdrawn from the event. Determination of what constitutes such attempts shall be at the discretion of the Series Director. In the event any of this Bonus Plan is not paid, the remaining money will be distributed evenly among the eligible car owners for this Bonus Plan. $600 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion Driver Bonus Plan is to be paid to the 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion Driver. The 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion Driver and/or Car Owner must enter, qualify for and compete in the event. If the 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion Driver is not eligible for this award, then the award will be paid to the 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion Car Owner. If the 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion Driver and/or Car Owner are not eligible for this award, the award for this event will be distributed through the 2019 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Championship Points Fund. $200 to the 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Rookie of the Year if he/she enters, qualifies for and competes in the event. If the 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Rookie of the Year is not eligible for this awardthe award for this event
    will be distributed through the 2019 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Championship Points Fund.
    QUALIFYING AND SPECIAL AWARDS (See Manufacturers’ Prize Money Conditions on Last Page)
    $250 Duralast GT “Break in the Race Award” per event award paid to the highest eligible driver in the running order at the time of the first caution in each race. In case of no caution, the highest finishing eligible driver will receive the award. $800 Hoosier Tire “Lap Leader” per event award to the eligible car owner whose driver leads the most laps in each event. In the event of a tie, the award will go to the highest finishing car in the event. $300 Hoosier Tire “Fastest Lap” per event award to the eligible car owner whose driver turns the fastest lap in each event. In the event of a tie, the award will go to the highest finishing car in the event. $500 Hoosier Tire “Most Improved” per event award to the eligible new team/organization whose driver improves the most positions during the course of the race. In the event of a tie, the award will go to the highest finishing car in the event. If money is not awarded during this event, funds will rollover to the next event and will continue to rollover until an eligible new team/organization claims the money. $1,000 Mayhew Tools Dominator Pole per event award to the driver with the fastest qualifying time eligible to participate under the Manufacturers’ Prize Money Conditions. $550 Sunoco Spec Fuel awards divided: 1st-$300 5th-$150 10th-$100. $3,500 Whelen Engineering “Winner of the Race” award to the winning driver. Whelen Non-Starter award will be paid to the first 8 competitors throughout the season who pass inspection, practice,
    attempt to qualify, but fail to make the feature event.

  10. Great post wmass!

  11. Outstanding post Just Me!

  12. wmass01013, that’s why it’s called points racing.

  13. Just Me wrote: “No R&D car for the 15 car, too busy with getting the new business up and running.”

    That goes against all that was published. It was said the R&D car was crucial to customer support and getting the new business up and running. And dissed other chassis companies for not running a R&D car.

  14. wmass01013 says:

    Thanx Just ME and Doug, I wish all purses were posted for the WMT, maybe not the business of fans but would be good to know

  15. With half the season gone, and LFR clearly outperforming the Troyer’s I wonder if any of the Troyer guys have approached Rob Fuller for technical support.

  16. If all those LFR cars were Troyers, the standings would be the same as they are now.

    The standings reflect talent.

  17. Liz Cherokee says:

    Anyone else staying at or near the Hedges in East Hampton who might want to share car service to the track? Bottoms up boys!

  18. Just Me says:

    dareal, you’re correct to a degree, the top 5 would be the same but it’s the rest of the field that might be different. As far as my comment about a R&D car, now that Rob has 90%+ of the chassis business, he doesn’t need one right now. He needs to focus on the production and development (and redevelopment)
    I know that some of the crew chiefs and drivers from the Troyer side of the business have already reached out to Rob and Emerling is one of them.
    Rob Summers car was at Fuller’s shop this week for a “tune up”. .

    For those of you that want the purse breakdown, I will continue to post if you want it.
    NHIS Eastern Propane 100
    RACING PURSE BREAKDOWN
    1st – $10,700 8th – $3,300 15th – $2,500 22nd – $2,000 29th – $1,600 31st – $1,400
    2nd – $7,500 9th – $3,200 16th – $2,400 23rd – $2,000 30th – $1,500 32nd – $1,300
    3rd – $6,500 10th – $3,000 17th – $2,300 24th – $2,000 33rd – $1,200
    4th – $5,500 11th – $2,900 18th – $2,200 25th – $2,000 34th – $1,000
    5th – $4,500 12th – $2,800 19th – $2,100 26th – $1,900 35th – $1,000
    6th – $4,000 13th – $2,700 20th – $2,000 27th – $1,800 36th – $1,000
    7th – $3,400 14th – $2,600 21st – $2,000 28th – $1,700
    BONUS PLANS
    $11,000 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Bonus Plan is to be paid to any of the Top 25 eligible car owners as follows: 1st through 10th-$500 each, 11th through 25th-$400 each. Eligible car owners are those who are ranked in the Top 40 of the current 2019 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Championship car owner point standings, regardless of overall finish in the event. Eligible car owners must enter the event, attempt to qualify and attempt to compete in the race. If the event is postponed
    any car that has qualified for the postponed race must return and attempt to compete in the event to be eligible for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Bonus Plan. If the eligible car owner’s car does not return, the car will be considered withdrawn from the event. Determination of what constitutes such attempts shall be at the discretion of the Series Director. In the event any of this Bonus Plan is not paid, the remaining money will be distributed evenly among the eligible car owners or this Bonus Plan. $600 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion Driver Bonus Plan is to be paid to the 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion Driver. The 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion Driver and/or Car Owner must enter, qualify for and compete in the event. If the 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion Driver is not eligible for this award, then the
    award will be paid to the 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion Car Owner. If the 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion Driver and/or Car Owner are not eligible for this award, the award for this event will be distributed through the 2019 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Championship Points Fund. $200 to the 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Rookie of the Year if he/she enters, qualifies for and competes in the event. If the 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Rookie of the Year is not eligible for this award the award for this event will be distributed through the 2019 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Championship Points Fund.
    QUALIFYING AND SPECIAL AWARDS (See Manufacturers’ Prize Money Conditions on Last Page)
    $250 Duralast GT “Break in the Race Award” per event award paid to the highest eligible driver in the running order at the time of the first caution in each race. In case of no caution, the highest finishing eligible driver will receive the award. $800 Hoosier Tire “Lap Leader” per event award to the eligible car owner whose driver leads the most laps in each event. In the event of a tie, the award will go to the highest finishing car in the event. $300 Hoosier Tire “Fastest Lap” per event award to the eligible car owner whose driver turns the fastest lap in each event. In the event of a tie, the award will go to the highest finishing car in the event. $500 Hoosier Tire “Most Improved” per event award to the eligible new team/organization whose driver improves the most positions during the course of the race. In the event of a tie, the award will go to the highest finishing car in the event. If money is not awarded during this event, funds will rollover to the next event and will continue to rollover until an eligible
    new team/organization claims the money. $1,000 Mayhew Tools Dominator Pole per event award to the driver with the fastest qualifying time eligible to participate under the Manufacturers’ Prize Money Conditions. $550 Sunoco Spec Fuel awards divided: 1st-$300 5th-$150 10th-$100. $3,500 Whelen Engineering “Winner of the Race” award to the winning driver. Whelen Non-Starter award will be paid to the first 10 competitors throughout the season who pass inspection, practice, attempt to qualify, but fail to make the feature event.

  19. Count me as a vote to continue to post the purse content.
    Keep in mind a lot of people read the comments that don’t participate and I’m sure they appreciate it as well.

  20. Thanks for the update Just me.

  21. Dareal. I agree with you. When it comes to the NWMT, 20% Is equipment, the other 80 is the talent. Of that about 65%is the driver 35 the team. Talent is tops, without it your not winning races

  22. That’s the age old question isn’t it? What’s the most important the driver or the equipment.
    My view it’s 95% equipment with a great driver being an extremely important 5%. Meaning if all cars are completely equal the best driver is 100% the determinant of success.
    The reality is that isn’t the case at all. If any owner has the choice of being able to possess only one thing. A great driver or the best equipment they without question would elect the equipment and take their chances on the driver. You can win with great equipment, an average driver and luck. You can’t even come close with substandard equipment and Richie Evans.
    I conducted the experiment long ago and more recently one Mr. Ryan Preece has proved the point as well.. Definitely 95% equipment and it’s pretty much universal in my experience anyway.

  23. Just Me says:

    Stafford “150” RACING PURSE BREAKDOWN
    1st – $6,500 8th – $1,350 15th – $1,075 22nd – $875 26th – $800
    2nd – $3,200 9th – $1,300 16th – $1,050 23rd – $850 27th – $800
    3rd – $2,700 10th – $1,250 17th – $1,025 24th – $825 28th – $750
    4th – $2,300 11th – $1,225 18th – $900 25th – $818 29th – $750
    5th – $1,800 12th – $1,200 19th – $900 30th – $750
    6th – $1,550 13th – $1,125 20th – $900 31st – $750
    7th – $1,450 14th – $1,100 21st – $900
    BONUS PLANS
    $11,000 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Bonus Plan is to be paid to any of the Top 25 eligible car owners as follows: 1st through 10th-$500 each, 11th through 25th-$400 each. Eligible car owners are those who are ranked in the Top 40 of the current 2019 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Championship car owner point standings, regardless of overall finish in the event. Eligible car owners must enter the event, attempt to qualify and attempt to compete in the race. If the event is postponed
    any car that has qualified for the postponed race must return and attempt to compete in the event to be eligible for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Bonus Plan. If the eligible car owner’s car does not return, the car will be considered withdrawn from the event. Determination of what constitutes such attempts shall be at the discretion of the Series Director. In the event any of this Bonus Plan is not paid, the remaining money will be distributed evenly among the eligible car owners
    for this Bonus Plan. $600 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion Driver Bonus Plan is to be paid to the 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion Driver. The 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion Driver and/or Car Owner must enter, qualify for and compete in the event. If the 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion Driver is not eligible for this award, then the
    award will be paid to the 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion Car Owner. If the 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion Driver and/or Car Owner are not eligible for this award, the award for this event will be distributed through the 2019 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Championship Points Fund. $200 to the 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Rookie of the Year if he/she enters, qualifies for and competes in the event. If the 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Rookie of the Year is not eligible for this award the award for this event will be distributed through the 2019 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Championship Points Fund.

    QUALIFYING AND SPECIAL AWARDS (See Manufacturers’ Prize Money Conditions on Last Page)
    $250 Duralast GT “Break in the Race Award” per event award paid to the highest eligible driver in the running order at the time of the first caution in each race. In case of no caution, the highest finishing eligible driver will receive the award. $800 Hoosier Tire “Lap Leader” per event award to the eligible car owner whose driver leads the most laps in each event. In the event of a tie, the award will go to the highest finishing car in the event. $300 Hoosier Tire “Fastest Lap” per event award to the eligible car owner whose driver turns the fastest lap in each event. In the event of a tie, the award will go to the highest finishing car in the event. $500 Hoosier Tire “Most Improved” per event award to the eligible new team/organization whose driver improves the most positions during the course of the race. In the event of a tie, the award will go to the highest finishing car in the event. If money is not awarded during this event, funds will rollover to the next event and will continue to rollover until an eligible new team/organization claims the money. $1,000 Mayhew Tools Dominator Pole per event award to the driver with the fastest qualifying time eligible to participate under the Manufacturers’ Prize Money Conditions. $550 Sunoco Spec Fuel awards divided: 1st-$300 5th-$150 10th-$100. $3,500 Whelen Engineering “Winner of the Race” award to the winning driver. Whelen Non-Starter award will be paid to the first 10 competitors throughout the season who pass inspection, practice, attempt to qualify, but fail to make the feature event.

  24. The 75 team bought the recent “R&D” car… and the 75 team is still at best a midpack finisher. They must be ecstatic to be in the top 10 in points. But let’s be real… the 75 capitalized in early races when there was massive attrition of the top cars, and the 75 was then able to finish well.

    Who is running the “R&D” car Chase Dowling ran?

    It is stunning that there are only a handful of truly talented teams that can consistently compete at the highest level, and then there are a bunch of teams with more money than talent that think they can buy their way to the top 3. It doesn’t work. Season after season, the majority of the wins are owned by just a couple teams, the best talented teams. Many other teams are running the same equipment as the top 3 teams. Make that most other teams run the same equipment as the top 3 teams.

    Rob p., they are running the same equipment. The series has very much become a cookie cutter production. Two of the most critical characteristics of a chassis (the frame) are not measured or specified. Geez, there’s more technology in a bicycle frame. The chassis (frame) and its perception, is dominated by the way mass is distributed, and the springs and shocks. In other words, the chassis tune. And talent does that. Remember, before the SPEC engine, the saying was a good engine can make a bad chassis look good. And that was so true. There were a few cars with extra horsepower, and it showed.

    Take any chassis, and let Moran tune it. It comes down to setting the nose and neutralizing the car, and that is achieved by mass placement, spring rates, and shock tune. Mass, springs and dampers… the fundamental elements of the physical world. And here we are in 2019, after decades of racing and thousands of races, and thousands of cars, drivers, owners and teams, folks still claim to have “found something”. 🤣😂. It just goes to show that these same folks do not understand mass, springs or dampers. After all this time, there should be nothing left to find. But some have the talent, many don’t.

    Lap times aren’t getting shorter, just that some are able to go faster than most of the others. They use the same equipment. Some know how to use those same parts better than others. Talent. Some have it, most don’t.

    So much of this racing comes down to tires, and the manufacturing to make sure all tires are identical and repeatable.

    Give Phil Moran a 12 year old Troyer (with freshened up welds) and Coby will still be where he is.

  25. wmass01013 says:

    Yes you need good equipment BUT the driver does matter more that 5%, no offense to names but if you put Wade Cole or Melilsa Fifield in the 2 and 51 would the results be better? sure but 8 or 9 wins and a title? NO!

  26. You guys answered your own question to why these guys don’t run open shows. They are running for over $10,000 every WMT race. The Whelen $3500 bonus comes directly to teams a week or so after the race. So with said bonus, NHMS will pay the winner over $14,000. Stafford winner looking at over $10,000. Oswego has an announced winning purse of $12,000 for Sept. This is all old news. Been this way for two seasons already. That’s why I can’t stand all this nonsense about open shows pay more. They don’t!

    Jukasa is a gorgeous facility.

  27. That’s funny wmass I was reflecting on the names you mentioned writing the comment.
    The driver vs equipment debate is an imponderable that can’t be won but it.s fun to chat about.
    Melissa and Wade are extreme examples. I suggest running the same scenario with say Tommy Catalano or maybe Rob Summers. What do you think would happen if Tommy Cat and Rob switched cars with JB and Doug. Do you think Justin and Doug would still end up in the front?
    On the other hand Pennink in the 3 vs Swanson may prove how much an impact the driver makes. Pennink seemed to milk better results out of the beloved but aged 3 compared to Swanson who has been a bit less consistent.

  28. wmass01013 says:

    JD since NASCAR stopped showing the race purse or winnings in every summary and we regular fans do not see the entry blank no one knew the payouts to the teams, SO YES we saw the press release that Whelen was adding to the purse In bonus $$, now that Just Me shpwed us 3 entry blanks we ALLLL KNOW!!

  29. OK the money is better but that doesn’t explain why teams don’t take in opens more often.. Don’t racers race.
    Does the fact that NWMT cars are designed around coil binding and bump steer have anything to do with their unsuitability for open programs where coil binding is generally not allowed? A contributor here said that LFR and TA3 chassis were primarily designed around coil binding where as the TA! was more for SK’s and tour modified where coil binding is not allowed.

  30. The tour guys enjoy their time off. Enough races on tour schedule to occupy them. Probably as simple as that.

  31. Just Me says:

    Chase didn’t run a “R&D” car. He ran two different cars, Chassis 01 and a new Gen I chassis. The R&D they were doing was with different shock and spring setups, The #75 team bought the new Gen I house car that only had the Icebreaker race, nothing different than the rest of the latest Gen I cars.

    @Doug, When I look at the top drivers from yester year (Evans, Kent, Cook, etc) hardly any of them had a regular full time job, they were full time racers. Now a days, most drivers have a normal full time job so getting extra time off for open shows are harder as well as sponser funding is limited.

  32. Seems to me, Just me you are one of the best informed contributors we have in this forum. I’m not trying to give you a hard time but I can’t help wondering if something has changed more significant then drivers personal time.
    In June 2016 at Seekonk Open Wheel Wednesday produced a banner field including NWMT names that were high in the points at the time.. Including Coby in the 2 who won, Silk, Pennink, Bonsignor, Pitkat, Dowling. 6 of the top ten being NWMT drivers. This recent TTOMS race at Seekonk included Swanson, Pitkat, Silk and Nocella. . Maybe I’m looking for something that isn’t there but it seems like something changed other then job commitments.

  33. Doug, the cost to run a car has skyrocketed while the purses have stayed stagnant. There’s a video out there with an interview if Richie Evans, he’s at a big open race and asked with all the series racing he does, why does he show up at open events, and his answer was a simple, matter-of-fact “$15,000”. Back then, $15,000 was a HUGE amount of money. It was an annual wage and then some for most. That’s why racers could race for a living back then.

    You need to understand that the TOTAL cost to run a COMPETITIVE car in an event can usually be around $5,000 to $7,500, and more for something like Loudon. Some teams had cars and engines specifically for Loudon. There is far more expense than tires and gas… far more.

    Simply put, today’s purses suck. First place can barely cover the TRUE TOTAL COST to run the event. Hopefully all the bonuses, contingency and points fund make up some help. But sponsorship is crucial to cover the expenses of this hobby.

  34. So far we have the camp that says that the NWMT is demanding enough and drivers want to use down time in ways other then racing. The camp that says the NWMT pays more and the camp that says the expense of racing has risen so much diversions from the tour make no sense. How about I add another. Most times tour drivers aren’t driving their tour cars they’re driving for someone else. Maybe there are less of those one shot rides available. Maybe guys like Ronnie Williams and Chase Dowling are better choices then any of the full season NWMT top drivers for special events. Maybe it’s about what money you can bring to a Open race to make the car more competitive. Maybe NWMT drivers are so invested in the tour they have nothing to bring to the open except driving and that’s not always enough.
    The most likely scenario is it’s all of the above to a greater or lesser degree.
    Thanks!

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