By Jason Christley, NASCAR
STAFFORD, Conn. — Doug Coby continued his mastery of his home track Friday night.
The 36-year-old from Milford, Connecticut, won his third straight NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour race Stafford Motor Speedway, the track there the three-time tour champion spent his early years racing, with yet another dominating effort. Coby led 129 of the 130 laps — pulling away on a green-white-checkered finish to claim the 26th Annual TSI Harley Davidson 125.
“Right now, our team is firing on all cylinders,” said Coby. “Everybody’s got to do their job, including me. And we did. That’s why we won.”
Jimmy Blewett scored his second straight finish with a runner-up, while Donny Lia, Eric Goodale and Justin Bonsignore rounded out the top five.
The win was the 19th of Coby’s career in 175 starts, tying him with Jerry Marquis and Todd Szegedy for eighth all-time on the Whelen Modified Tour. Coby has won five of the tour’s last seven races, dating back to last year. It’s a streak that covers the last three events at Stafford.
Dating back to his win in the NAPA Fall Final last October, Coby’s No. 2 Dunleavy Repair/A&J Romano Construction Chevrolet has led 367 of the last 375 laps on the half-mile.
“Not to screw up our car by making too many changes,” said Coby of what his team has learned in order to keep winning at Stafford. “We were great at the Fall Final and that was the first time we ran the car here. And we tweak it during practice, and we tweak before the race. The guys know, night race, what’s going to happen. Obviously I know this race track. They know this race track.
“The goal right now is not screw it up. It’s fast. It’s going to be a contender every time we come here.”
Only a pair of late cautions were able to slow Coby. The final came on Lap 123 and set up an overtime finish. Coby, however, was able to get away from the pack and roll to Victory Lane.
“I left the door open a couple times,” said Coby, “but the car just had great forward bite off Turn 2. I think that was the difference for us.”
Rowan Pennink, who won the tracks’ NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Division I feature earlier in the night, finished sixth. Ron Silk, Bobby Santos, Brendon Bock and Max Zachem completed the top 10.
Championship contender Timmy Solomito was caught up in a late race incident that dropped him from second to seventh in points. Coby stretched his lead to 24 over Bonsignore and 28 over Donny Lia. Just 10 points separate Lia from an eighth-place tie between Blewett and Bock.
The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour is back on track on Wednesday, June 15, at Thompson (Connecticut) Speedway Motorsports Park.
|1||1||2||Doug Coby||Dunleavy Repair/A&J Romano Const Chevrolet||130||48||5||Running|
|2||5||4||Jimmy Blewett||Starrett Dodge||130||42||Running|
|3||3||8||Donny Lia||Sypher Construction/Bardahl Chevrolet||130||42||1||Running|
|4||4||58||Eric Goodale||GAF Roofing/RBSCorp.com Chevrolet||130||40||Running|
|5||13||51||Justin Bonsignore||M3 Technology Chevrolet||130||39||Running|
|6||2||3||Rowan Pennink||Cape Cod Copper/Canto Paving Chevrolet||130||38||Running|
|7||15||82||Ron Silk||Horton Avenue Materials Chevrolet||130||37||Running|
|8||8||44||Bobby Santos||Tinio Corp./Dan Kelley/Curb Records Chevrolet||130||36||Running|
|9||9||29||Brendon Bock||Pro System Brakes/L.I. Performance Chevrolet||130||35||Running|
|10||18||20||Max Zachem||Lu-Mac’s Package Store/VWS Chevrolet||130||34||Running|
|11||11||75||Shawn Solomito||Eastport Feeds/Axel Anderson Inc. Chevrolet||129||33||Running|
|12||19||46||Jeff Goodale||Riverhaed Bldg Supply Chevrolet||129||32||Running|
|13||16||36||Dave Sapienza||Frankie’s Towing Chevrolet||129||31||Running|
|14||10||56||Craig Lutz *||Lutz Motorsports Chevrolet||129||30||Running|
|15||22||99||Jamie Tomaino||Dunleavy’s Repair/Atlantic Sprinkler Chevrolet||129||29||Running|
|16||7||9||Chase Dowling||S&S Asphalt Paving/Dunleavy’s Repair Chevrolet||129||28||Running|
|17||17||89||Matt Swanson *||Spafco Race Chassis/FMR Racing Chevrolet||128||27||Running|
|18||20||18||Ken Heagy||Buoy One Seafood Chevrolet||128||26||Running|
|19||25||24||Andrew Krause *||Supreme Manufacturing Chevrolet||127||25||Running|
|20||24||26||Gary McDonald||Lakeland Landscape /TRC Electric Chevrolet||126||24||Running|
|21||21||33||Wade Cole||Performance Engines/Kendall Oil Chevrolet||126||23||Running|
|22||26||1||Melissa Fifield||Eastern Propane & Oil Chevrolet||117||22||Running|
|23||12||16||Timmy Solomito||Diversified Metals /R.B. Enterprises Ford||116||21||Accident|
|24||14||64||Rob Summers||HTE/Fast Track Elect/Complete Const. Chevrolet||72||20||Accident|
|25||6||85||Woody Pitkat||Stuart’s Automotive/Dunleavy’s Repair Chevrolet||71||19||Accident|
|26||23||38||Dave Salzarulo||Perf. Engines/Kendall Oil Chevrolet||2||18||Vibration|
Fastest Qualifier: Doug Coby, Time: 18.46 Seconds, Speed: 97.508 mph
Time of Race: 54 mins, 38 secs Average Speed: 71.385 mph Margin of Victory: 0.535 Seconds
Caution Flags: Laps 73-80; 111-115; 117-120; 123-127. 4 for 22 laps.
Lap Leaders: Doug Coby 1-70, Donny Lia 71, Doug Coby 72-130.
Total Laps Led: Doug Coby 129, Donny Lia 1. 2 changes involving 2 drivers.
Top 10 Driver Points: Doug Coby 172, Justin Bonsignore 148, Donny Lia 144, Max Zachem 143, Ron Silk 142, Rowan Pennink 140, Timmy Solomito 137, Jimmy Blewett 132, Brendon Bock 132, Matt Swanson * 126
* Denotes Sunoco Rookie of the Year contender