Chris Turbush Overcomes Penalty To Win Bubba 150 Saturday At Riverhead Raceway

(Press Release from Riverhead Raceway)

When racing gives you lemons, you make lemonade. That is exactly what Chris Turbush of Wading River did Saturday night at Riverhead Raceway capturing his first career NASCAR Modified victory in spectacular fashion. Turbush was penalized earlier in the race for rough driving after contact with another competitor. Instead of throwing in the towel Turbush and his team pulled up their boot straps went to work and drove back to the front for the win.

Kyle Soper of Manorville won the $300 Pole Award by turning in a lap of 11.627 in qualifying with Dave Brigati of Calverton second quick at 11.667. When the race got underway as many expected Soper raced out to the early lead while Brigati tucked in behind him. Matt Brode slowed the race for the first caution with a left front flat. When the race resumed the green flag didn’t stay out long as on lap 8 Justin Brown got into the wall ending his race night. It was deemed by race control that Chris Turbush made contact with Brown and Chris was sent to the rear of the field for the restart for his part. When the race resumed Soper and Brigati remained the top two in the 19-car field.

On lap 33 exiting the second corner Brigati, who pulled up to the rear spoiler of Soper was able to gain a run to the inside and take the lead of the race with Soper now sitting second. With the race settling in Brigati began to pull away some from Soper but many veteran observers had the thought that Kyle was just cooling his jets for a late race run back to the lead. Meantime nearing the 100-lap mark it was clear the fastest car on track was that of Chris Turbush who picked off cars in the top ten to come to third and close in on Soper for second. 

On lap 103 entering the third turn Turbush ducked under Soper and was scored second to start the 104th circuit but he wasn’t done. After eight laps of first getting to leader Brigati, Chris then had to try and find a way by the veteran driver. As the duo exited the fourth corner to start the 113th lap Turbush found a way under Brigati and was the new race leader. Brigati started to fall off with tire wear and moments later was passed by Soper for second. The question became could Soper now work some late race magic and reel in Turbush. While able to stay in the leaders tire tracks Soper was unable to make a run at Turbush over the closing laps.

At the finish it was Chris Turbush steering the Eastern Fuel Chevy to his first career NASCAR Modified win after having won 66 times in other classes at the track. While unstrapping for victory lane an overjoyed Turbush looked right into the Flo Racing cameras and shouted, “this is why you never give up, you kids out there never give up, you too can do this”. After receiving The Bubba 150 trophy from the family of Bob Patanjo, Chris reflected, “man after that call, which I didn’t agree with, my team and I knew we had a great car. I just tightened up the belts and went to work” 

Kyle Soper brought the Eastport Feeds Chevy home for runner-up money and noted afterwards, “congrats to Chris and his team, as for our car we were just a tick too tight for my liking but we think we know where to be for the next one” Completing the podium was Dylan Slepian of Dix Hills who is chasing Soper for the season long championship, “Hats off the Chris and team, we had a good car. Great night for Eastports Feeds with a second, third and fourth tonight” Indeed Michael Christopher Jr of Wolcott, Ct drove from deep in the field to finish fourth while John Beatty Jr. of Merrick was fifth.

After the race the top five had their clutches inspected with all five passing. Tire samples were also taken from the top five with results pending lab diagnostics, the order of finish is unofficial awaiting those results.

In the third and final Miller Lite Triple Crown Series event for the Late Models Shawn Patrick of Brightwaters scored his first win of 2022 and in the process padded his overall championship lead. The field was set back on June 18th with the race eventually washed out, Jimmy Rennick Jr. was fastest in qualifying back in June and brought the field to green taking the early lead over Brandon Turbush. The race moved along quickly until the 34th lap when Turbush, still trying to reel in Rennick for a run at the lead spun in turn one after contact from a lapped car. It took several attempts to get the race back underway and start the 35th lap. With Turbush spun from second, Shawn Patrick lined up to the outside of Rennick for the restart. When the race did finally get back underway Rennick had contact from behind and was not able to fire off the way he’d like allowing Shawn Patrick, who nailed the restart to become the new race leader on lap 35. Over the final 15 laps Shawn Patrick hit his marks and drove to his 9th career win in his Matlach Fabricating Chevy tying him for 20th on the all time win list with Kyle Soper. Jimmy Rennick Jr. of Howard Beach secured the 2022 Miller Lite Triple Crown Series championship with his runner-up finish in the Metropolitan Recycling entry with Dave Brigati third in the Coors Light Silver Bullet. 

In what can only be described as a heartbreaking turn of events in the 25-lap Crate Modified event Charles Macwhinnie of Southampton appeared to have secured his first career victory. Macwhinnie, steering the CHM Landscapes Chevy led all 25-laps of the contest driving the race of his life. However sadly after the checkers flew it was discovered and verified the muffler fell off the right side headers which by the Riverhead Raceway rule book is an instant disqualification. That turn of events moved Alex Colasanto of Selden into the winners circle earning his first career Crate Modified win in the Vanguard Fire Protection Corvette. Colasanto sat right behind Macwhinnie for the entire distance of the race, he too driving his best race of his career. Championship leader Owen Grennan of Glen Cove was runner-up in the Dillner Precast Chevy with younger brother Chase third in his Black Forrest Auto Works machine.

Tony Ferrante Jr. of New Hyde Park took the lead from Frank Saladino of Huntington to score the 15-lap win in the Eddie Partridge Vintage All Stars feature. Ferrante in the Anthony Ferrante Co. Cavalier owned by Bill Murray looped around Saladino exiting the fourth turn to come to the race lead, a lead he would keep until the checker flag waved. Don Howe of Water Mill was second in the Corwith’s Auto Body Cavalier with Mark Miller of Hauppauge third in the Meade’s Welding Chevy.

The Mini Stock 20-lap feature would produce a green to checker run with CJ Zukowski of Riverhead scoring his second win of the season. Justin Squires showed the way early leading the first three laps of the tilt before CJ Zukowski, who started the race 5th executed an outside pass exiting the fourth turn for the lead. Over the remainder of the race Zukowski steering the Walls of Fame Chevy would lead the rest of the way for his 7th career triumph. Andrew Farnham of Baldwin raced his way to second on lap 9 and would finish there in his self funded Honda. Joe Cooke Jr. of Shirley was third in the Island Technology racer.

Soft spoken Phil LaManna of Smithtown notched his second Truck Enduro win when he topped their 40-lap event. LaManna took the lead in his EP Milling & Sweeping Chevy S10 on lap 13 from Kerry Botts of Manorville to secure the win. Mariah Lawrence of Southampton was second in the Unique Golf General Lee with older brother Woot third in the Gregor Well Drilling Chevy.

The Bubba 150 NASCAR Modifieds (Unofficial) 1. Chris Turbush 2. Kyle Soper 3. Dylan Slepian 4. Michael Christopher Jr. 5. John Beatty Jr. 6. Matt Brode 7. JB Fortin 8. Timmy Solomito 9. Dave Brigati 10. Kyle Ellwood 11. Chris Rogers 12. Jason Agugliaro 13. Chris Young 14. Allan Pedersen 15. Eric Zeh 16. Roger Turbush 17. Jack Handley Jr. 18. Artie Pedersen III 19. Justin Brown

Late Models: 1. Shawn Patrick 2. Jimmy Rennick Jr. 3. Dave Brigati 4. Chris McGuire 5. Brandon Turbush 6. Gerard Giordano 7. Ray Minieri 8. Russ Jansen 9. Brian Brown 10. Alyssa Paprocky 11. Rusty Turbush 12. Ed Cheslak 13. Brian Doyle 14. Kevin Metzger 15. Scott Cheslak 16. Paul Cummings DNS- Mark Stewart, Jeff Otto Jr. 

Crate Modifieds: 1. Alex Colasanto 2. Owen Grennan 3. Chase Grennan 4. Sean Glennon 5. Kyle Ellwood 6. AJ DeSantis 7. Kyle Soper 8. Michael Berner 9. Mike Albasini 10. Vinny Delaney 11. Terry Stiles 12. Kenneth Massa 13. Stepehn Coleman 14. Eddie Schutze 15. Dennis Krupski 16. DJ Doyle 17. Max Handley 18. Mark Wolf DQ-Charles Macwhiinie DNS- Eric Hersey

Vintage All-Stars: 1. Tony Ferrante Jr. 2. Don Howe 3. Mark Miller 4. Frank Saladino 5. Jimmy Reed 6. Mike Siraco

Mini Stocks: 1. CJ Zukowski 2. Andrew Farnham 3. Joe Cooke Jr. 4. Chris Olivari 5. Paul Wojcik 6. Ryan Zukowski 7. Mike Mujsce Jr. 8. Justin Squires 9. Mike Mujsce Sr. 10. Charles Astacio 11. Chris Elixson DNS- Joe Warren Jr.

Truck Enduro: 1. Phil LaManna 2. Mariah Lawrence 3. Woot Lawrence 4. Kerry Botts 5. Gary Voight 6. Don Nelson Jr. 7. Dusty Cole 8. Jackie Germuth 9. Emily Hubbard 10. Steve Reisert 11. Chloe Phillips 12. James Kelly 13. Danielle Cohem 14. Kayla Kelly 15. Jennifer Hohwiesner 16. Nikki Giordano 17. Hallie Campo 18. Amanda Brown 19. Brandon LaManna   


  1. Saturday night viewing the racing from Riverhead is starting to be a thing. Something weird usually happens.
    Imagine you’re Charlie MacWhinnie. Just ran the race of your life, look to go to victory lane to claim the spoils of your victory after struggling so long but are told you lost a muffler and are disqualified. They don’t screw around down at Riverhead starting with the crate engine rules. You get the engine from Riverhead, race it and when it get’s tired it’s done. You can sell it to a guy converting a Chevy S-10 to a V-8 and let him rebuild it but no freshening engines at Riverhead you buy a new one. If MacWhinnie couldn’t win it was nice to see it fall into the lap of a guy that hadn’t won either.
    Seriously Riverhead why do you let Soper and Ellwood race in the Crate Modifieds. All they are is a distraction for the young drivers trying to learn. Their skill level is just so advanced it makes no sense to be so rigid on car rules while you make young drivers trying to build their skills compete against tour type modified drivers with long resumes.
    With young Kenneth Massa learning to drive modifieds it’s hard not to wonder if in the long run one J. Bonsignor’s job may be at risk. So far there’s not much danger of that the grasshopper still has much to learn.
    Never thought Mike Christopher was much of a sprinter or strong on shorter tracks he’s just not comfortable as a banger nor does he posses the cat like reflexes of his dad or uncle. His strength longer distance on bigger tracks where being smooth and tactical gets you wins. I sure was wrong on the shorter track part of the observation. Those cats at Riverhead are a tough bunch in the tour modifieds. The WhirlingTurbish had the upper hand on the handles last night but they’re so competitive they rotate excellence most weeks among numerous strong cars. Introduced into that cauldron of experience and competitiveness one Mike Christopher Jr who had minimal experience at the track and who qualified way out of the top 10. With a 150 laps he turned in a heady race, got what the car could give and finished a strong 4th. Very impressive mainly because the car was never among the fastest in lap speeds. It was a patient, experienced driver that got the unlikely finish in the Riverhead pool of piranha.
    I often wonder what future Riverhead has with Eddie Partridge passed and Long Island property values being what they are. The 6 elevated on that massive pillar pretty much makes the point it’s business as usual.

  2. Rafter fan says

    Who was MCJr driving for at Riverhead? Baldwin?

  3. Not TBR. Number 10 sponsored by Eastport Feeds, didn’t catch the specific owners names. Normally Brian Browns car ???

  4. The 10 car is a team car to Dylan Slepian.

    Also don’t see what the big deal is about letting tour guys race in the crates. It’s not like they have been taking wins away. Might do some of the kids some good racing around some higher talent every now and then instead of ripping more RF’s off.

    As long as it doesn’t get like the height of the buschwacker days, i dont really see an issue.

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