All posts by Myracenews

Timmy Solomito Now a Winner at Every Level

The Solomito family has been a part of racing on Long Island for  decades. The latest generation of Solomito racers, brothers Jerry, Shawn and Timmy have been regulars at the Riverhead Raceway for years. They have raced Legends, Chargers and Modifieds  at the 1/4 mile oval at the end of Long Island all with great support from family and friends.

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A win in the INEX Legends feature at Riverhead.

Timmy  has always been a fan favorite at Riverhead,  many seasons ago he acquired the nickname “The Natural” as a smooth driver when he ran his legends. The nickname stuck as he won races in the Legends, Chargers and Modifieds  in family owned cars and driving for people like Wayne Anderson and the legendary red #15 modified.

Several years ago Timmy got a chance to see what modified racing was like at the highest levels. Ed Whelan who owned Ted Christopher’s tour modified gave Timmy a chance to drive the teams second car. A solid run at the Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park was only spoiled by a broken

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Timmy in the #66 Charger

oil line. That day Timmy showed the racing world he could wheel a race car at the bullrings and the larger, faster tracks.

Last weekend  Timmy Solomito won the biggest race of his career with the season opening NASCAR WMT Icebreaker 150 the  Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park. Timmy’s power move past Ryan Preece to take the lead for good late in the race cemented his first NASCAR WMT win.

Timmy has joined the long list of Long Island drivers that have ventured off the island and a shorter list that have won races at Thompson.  Drivers like  Charlie Jarzombek, Mike Ewanitsko, Steve Park and Greg Sacks left Long Island and found great success in the modifieds and beyond. A win at Thompson means you can compete with and beat the big boys.

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Getting ready to shake down the #1 Charlie Jarzombek Vega at Riverhead.

Charlie Jarzombek was an Icebreaker winner  30 years ago and now Timmy can claim that same title . Ironically several times Timmy has been asked to drive the  legendary #1 Vega restored by Charlies bother Rickey.  Amazingly with little track time in the cars  Timmy was always able to turn laps that would put him in the field of today’s race cars. One year he was turning times not far off the fastest modifieds racing that night made even more impressive by the fact that brake fluid was leaking into the cockpit making it tough to keep his feet on the petals.

When Sundays Icebreaker 150  started the front row of the race consisted  Xfinty regular Ryan Preece and last years champion Doug Coby, both heavy favorites to win that day. Timmy started  further back n 13th place and had to work his way forward. As he said we picked them off one by one then a great pit stop late in the race helped put Timmy near the front and put him in a position for the win.

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Timmy being pushed, out of fuel to victory lane after his Icebreaker win.

After the race Timmy spoke to the media on what it was like to win the Icebreaker. In typical  fashion Timmy humbly thanked the  team owner, crew, sponsors and every person who helped put him into a position to win. Last year was not the year they had hoped for but he never felt his job was in jeopardy. He credited a talk with Mike Stefanik during the week that helped him on his restarts which he admitted was not his strong point.

When asked what it meant to him to join the great Long Island drivers who have won races at Thompson Timmy said it was huge, everyone knows where it is on the  map. You always want to race and win at Thompson, plus to win your first one there is incredible.

One of the most amazing parts of Sundays victory was the fact Timmy’s car started sputtering right after he crossed the finish line. By the time he got to the back stretch the engine shut off and he was out of gas. On the radio he kept telling his crew “I think I’m out of gas”. One more lap or one more caution and the outcome of the race might have been much different. Timmy’s  comment about running out of fuel after the race “Someone must have been watching over us today.”

I got to share a golf cart ride back to the pits long after  all he interviews were over and it was time to go home. It was pretty clear that his win was something he dreamed about a long time and the smile on his face was not going away any time soon. His last comment to me as we rode behind the empty grandstands back to pits the was I hope they give me the day off on Monday but it was back to work on Monday morning.

Timmy will try and back up the season opening win at next weekends Spring Sizzler at The Stafford Motor Speedway in Stafford Springs Ct.

 

Again for 2016 the Valenti Auto Group will be the primary sponsor for the Modified Racing Series.

Anyone from the Connecticut, Rhode Island area will have probably come in contact with one of their dealerships at one time or another, but no one realizes that they have been around since 1927, when Ferdinand A Valenti Sr. started his auto repair business in  Wallingford, CT.
Valenti first sold Nash and Lafayette automobiles and International trucks, then began selling Dodge and Plymouth in 1938. In 1955 Valenti bought the opportunity to sell Chevrolet, which became the best selling brand in the United States during the 1960s, 70s and 80s.
The Valenti’s were always known for doing business on their word and a handshake. In 1973 Ferdinand’s sons Fred Junior and Robert bought another Chevrolet – Oldsmobile dealership in Mystic, CT.
The Valenti dealerships owned by various members of the Valenti family third generation currently represent 18 brands of autos across Connecticut and Rhode Island.
Going forward, Valenti has built facilities that can handle a larger volume of car sales and service and has adopted a low pricing strategy to put it to use. The one thing that remains constant is that no matter the size of the dealership, it is still run with the same family values and integrity that Ferdinand Valenti Senior had when he started selling and servicing cars and trucks to local farmers, residents and businesses in 1927.

The opening weekend of VMRS racing is Sat April 30, 2016 at the  Monadnock Speedway Winchester, NH.

Eric Beers holds off Matt Hirschman in Mahoning Valley Speedway lid-lifter and prelude to RoC opener

 

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By DINO OBERTO

(LEHIGHTON, Pa. 4-16-16) Mahoning Valley Speedway played host to its 2016 Opening Night with a packed grandstand, a packed pit area that included 127 race cars and although the program may have extended a bit long due to some opening night glitches, it was a monies-worth night of entertaining stock car racing none the less.

And, with the Ferris Mowers Race of Champions (RoC) Asphalt Modified Series Tour Fueled by Sunoco set to kick off their season next Saturday evening, it gave race hungry fans a prelude to what the “Break-The Ice-75” has to offer as home track favorite Eric Beers held off defending RoC champion Matt Hirschman in a hotly contested showdown to claim his 46th career Mahoning victory.

Past track champions Don Wagner and Kris Graver where third and fourth respectively while another of the RoC top guns, three-time champ Chuck Hossfeld, completed the top five giving a solid indication that next week’s race will produce some outstanding talent.

“It was a great race for the fans and we had a lot of fun tonight running against Matt (Hirschman). We ran each other to the brink of taking each other out more or less but it’s good to be able to race with someone like that and race as hard as you can and not take each other out,” said Beers who hails from Northampton.

After a trio of heats and consi for the 24 cars on hand, a redraw for feature starting spots took place with Wagner and Beers picking the front row and at the drop of starter Bob Stull’s race commencing green, Beers darted quickly by Wagner for the opening lap lead.

“It was getting cold and I knew my only shot to get Donny (Wagner) was on the start. We got a good jump going into (turn) one and then going into (turn) two and that’s all we wrote there,” said Beers.

Unfortunately caution flags soon began to interrupt the racing as numerous incidents, that included a red flag period would hamper the action. Beers then had to hold off the restart attempts of Wagner and then Hirschman, who was running second by lap 15. 

Once Hirschman was in contention he would throw everything at Beers. On restarts he kept even before Beers would slightly edge forward. He leaned on him from behind and even had a chance to take the low lane at one point. It was good, hard Mahoning style racing.

“Every time we would go green and I got a rhythm going the caution would come out and that killed me and I may have overheated the left rear when I was trying to out run Donny when he was on my outside and then the same thing with Matt.” said Beers.

“What really hurt was that red flag and our tires cooled off and my left rear never came back. I couldn’t touch the gas at the end and he (Hirschman) was a bit better towards the end and it just worked out in our favor that we were ahead.”

The original opener with the RoC was planned for April 9 but weather postponed those plans. With last night’s race being just a regular 35-lap feature, Beers noted that it gave him and everyone else the needed prep time to ready themselves for what looks to be quite the battle in the Break-The-Ice-75.

“It was good to have a tune-up for all of us and work all the bugs out of the cars. It was good to get here and just get acclimated to what’s going on again and I think just looking at the guys you had here tonight just coming to get ready for that next week that it will be a really good show,” said Beers.

Travis Fisher of Freeland was a winner in the Late Model main for the first time since his rookie season of 2008. Starting third, Fisher was able to avoid an opening lap skirmish between defending champ Paul Koehler Jr,, Lorin Arthofer II and Frankie Althouse who got together I turn two.

Afterwards Fisher was at the point and from there on turned on his cruise control, making perfect laps and holding off Mike Sweeney en route to the checkers.

In 2015 there were 19 different feature winners with the Street Stocks, however, that group did not include champion Zach Graver. 2016 will.

Graver, from Lehighton, put last year’s winless season behind him in a hurry as he won the 30-lap opener after making an outside pass over Josh Mooney with 11 laps to go. It was also race number one of the American Rental Street Stock Gamblers Series.

In the Dirt Mods it was Mike Stofflet of Mertztown leading every lap and authoring the most dominate race he has ever had, lapping all but one car, second place finisher Aleia Geisler.

Likewise Bobby Kibler Jr., of Lehighton also cruised out front for all 20 laps to win the Pro 4 feature.

The Hobby Stocks came out in full force as 24 cars signed in and besting them all was White Haven’s Sam Ryan who waged a thrilling dogfight with runner-up Rich Mutarelli.

Defending Micro Stock Racing Series champ Alex Greenzweig of Kunkletown held off Booby Wagner for his first win of the season.

 

Modified Feature Finish (35 Laps): 1. Eric Beers, 2. Matt Hirschman, 3. Don Wagner, 4. Kris Graver, 5. Chuck Hossfeld, 6. Kyle Strohl, 7. Bobby Jones, 8. John Markovic, 9. Anthony Sesely, 10. Gene Bowers, 11. Jimmy Zacharias, 12. Terry Markovic, 13. Roger Cross, 14. Todd Bear, 15. Jack Ely, 16. Austin Kochenash, 17. Brian DeFebo, 18. Earl Paules, 19. Lee Sharpsteen, 20. Nick Bear DNS: Jason Zatsko DNQ: Brian Labar, Calvin Carroll, Roger Heffelfinger Jr.

Late Model Feature Finish (25 Laps):  1. Travis Fisher, 2. Mike Sweeney, 3. Patrick Hargan, 4. Frankie Althouse, 5. Lorin Arthofer, 6. Jeremy Miller, 7. Paul Koehler Jr., 8. Troy Bollinger, 9. Josh Oswald, 10. Jacob Kerstetter

Street Stock Feature Finish (30 Laps): 1. Zach Graver, 2. Josh Mooney, 3. Jon Moser, 4. Jason Kuhn, 5. Stacey Brown, 6. Randy Ahner Jr., 7. Randy Schlenker, 8. Jason Frey, 9. Todd Ahner, 10. Corey Edelman, 11. Jared Ahner, 12. Justin Mooney, 13. Kristy Arthofer, 14. Aaron Kromer, 15. Eric Danyluk, 16. Rick Reichenbach, 17. Jon Tracy, 18. Mark Martini, 19. Joe Stangle, 20. Greg Long, 21.Chip Wanamaker, 22. Dennis Buss DNQ:  Jamie Smith, Logan Boyer, Jeremy Scheckler, Mike Piechota, Kevin Weierbach, TJ Kemmerer, George Ramos, BJ Wambold

Dirt Mod Feature Finish (25 Laps): 1. Mike Stofflet, 2. Aleia Geisler, 3. Frank Parastino, 4. Scott Adams, 5. Scott Hyland, 6. Ray Deemer, 7. Billy Lasko, 8. Ricky Yetter, 9. Mark Levy, 10. Bill Sittler DNS: Paul Effrig

Pro 4 Feature Finish (20 Laps): 1. Bobby Kibler Jr., 2. Cody Kohler., 3.Tyler Stangle, 4. Jake Kibler., 5. Shawn Kistler, 6 Josh Scherer, 7. Shawn Hoffman., 8. JD Light., 9. Kailyn Beers., 10. Latonia Barlow

Hobby Stock Feature Finish (20 Laps): 1. Sam Ryan, 2. Rich Mutarelli, 3. Michael Wambold, 4. Jeff Biegley, 5. Ryan Berger, 6. Ken Reeder, 7. Avery Arthofer, 8. Nicholas Kerstetter, 9. Daniel Hargan, 10. Cody Geist, 11. Devon Schmidt, 12. Dean Strohl Jr., 13. Ron Heeter, 14. Elmer Kennedy, 15. Randy Sicher, 16. Shayne Geist, 17. Jesse Strohl, 18. Tiffany Wambold, 19. Dean Strohl Sr., 20. Philip Sabatine DNQ: Austin Beers, Gary Lerch, Colton Perry, Lyndsay Buss