All posts by Myracenews

NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Statistical Advance: Stafford

nwmt-lg

Analyzing The NAPA Fall Final 150 At Stafford Motor Speedway

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Sept. 30, 2015) – The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour is set to headline Stafford (Connecticut) Motor Speedway’s 43rd Annual NAPA Auto Parts Fall Final Weekend with the NAPA Fall Final 150 on Sunday. Below is a statistical look at the performance of the tour and selected drivers at the track:

NAPA Fall Final 150 Setup:

  • Woody Pitkat leads Ryan Preece by eight points and Doug Coby by 11 in the championship standings entering the next-to-last race of the season. Preece, Coby and Pitkat finished 1-2-3 in the last NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour visit to Stafford Motor Speedway in August.
  • Preece and Pitkat have combined to win the last five races at Stafford. Preece is the defending winner of the NAPA Fall Final 150, and won the two Friday night races there this year.
  • Prior to the run of Pitkat and Preece, Coby and Bobby Santos compiled eight wins in a 10-race stretch at Stafford from 2012-14.
  • Eric Goodale will make his 100th career start in this race. He maintains the active starts streak lead, currently at 97 races entering Stafford.

 At Stafford Motor Speedway:

History

  • The Stafford Springs Agricultural Park opened in 1870. The current race track was originally used for horse racing, which gave way to automobiles after World War II.
  • Stafford Motor Speedway became a NASCAR-sanctioned track in 1959 and was paved in 1967.
  • Stafford is one of nine tracks that have been a part of the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series program in each of its 34 years of competition.
  • The inaugural NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour race at Stafford was held on April 14, 1985. NASCAR Hall of Famer Richie Evans won the 80-lap race as part of the 14th Annual Spring Sizzler weekend.

 Notebook

  • The NWMT has held 117 races at Stafford since 1985, a total second only to the 129 events at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park.
  • Stafford has held multiple races in 30 of the tour’s 31 seasons. The lone exception was 1988.
  • There have been 32 different race winners at Stafford, led by Mike Stefanik’s 20 victories.
  • There have been 43 different pole winners at Stafford, led by Stefanik’s 17. Ryan Preece set the track qualifying record in the 2012 Spring Sizzler.
  • No driver has started all previous 117 races at Stafford. Jamie Tomaino has missed only one – the track’s inaugural race.
  • There have been seven races won in wire-to-wire fashion at Stafford, the last by Ron Silk in 2011.
  • Ryan Preece was the youngest Stafford race winner at 18 years, 9 months and 14 days in 2009.
  • Ted Christopher was the oldest Stafford victor at 53 years, 3 months and 28 days in 2011.
  • The NAPA Fall Final 150 entry list features 10 drivers that have previously won at the track: Christopher (12), Doug Coby and Bobby Santos (6), Preece (5), Donny Lia and Todd Szegedy (4), Woody Pitkat (2), James Civali (1), Silk (1) and Tomaino (1).

 Stafford Motor Speedway Data

Race #:  14 of 15 overall, 4 of 4 at Stafford

Track Layout:  .5-mile asphalt oval

Race Length:  150 laps (75 miles)

Banking/Turns 1 & 2:  9 degrees

Banking/Turns 3 & 4:  7.5 degrees

 Qualifying/Race Data

2014 Race Winner:  Ryan Preece, Ford, 74.856 mph, 1 hr. 55 secs.

2014 Pole Winner:  Bobby Santos, Chevrolet, 97.266 mph, 18.506 secs.

Qualifying Record:  Ryan Preece, Ford, 100.424 mph, 17.924 secs., 4/29/12

  Active Category Leaders at Stafford: Wins

  1. Ted Christopher … 12
  2. Doug Coby … 6

Bobby Santos … 6

Poles

  1. Bobby Santos … 9
  2. Donny Lia … 8
  3. Ted Christopher … 4

Ryan Preece … 4

Top Fives

  1. Ted Christopher … 30
  2. Todd Szegedy … 23
  3. Doug Coby … 14

Donny Lia … 14

Bobby Santos … 14

  Top 10s

  1. Jamie Tomaino … 54
  2. Ted Christopher … 52

3. Todd Szegedy … 30   Laps Led

  1. Ted Christopher … 2,083
  2. Todd Szegedy … 844
  3. Doug Coby … 786

 

Laps Completed

  1. Jamie Tomaino … 16,713
  2. Ted Christopher … 12,952
  3. Todd Szegedy … 8,017

  Starts

  1. Jamie Tomaino … 116
  2. Ted Christopher … 91
  3. Wade Cole … 56

 Select Driver Highlights:

Justin Bonsignore (No. 51 M3 Technology Chevrolet)

  • Has eight wins, five poles and 50 top 10s in 86 career NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour starts.
  • Ranks 10th in points with seven top 10s in 13 outings, highlighted by wins in both events at Riverhead Raceway.
  • Has two poles, 12 top 10s, an average finish of 13th and a best result of second (April 2013, June 2014) in 23 career NWMT starts at Stafford Motor Speedway.

Ted Christopher (No. 22 Canto Paving/Ferguson Waterworks Chevrolet)

  • The 2008 NWMT champion has 42 wins, 24 poles and 198 top 10s in 359 career starts. His 42 wins rank third all-time and his 24 poles are eighth.
  • Is looking to end a 53-race winless drought. It’s the second-longest such streak in his career. His first win came in his 94th race.
  • Sits 14th in points with six top 10s in 11 starts.
  • Has 12 wins, four poles, 51 top 10s, an average finish of 13th and 2,083 laps led in 91 career NWMT Stafford starts.
  • Is a nine-time NASCAR Whelen All-American Series track champion at Stafford out of the SK Modified division, where his 101 triumphs are more than double second place on the division wins list. Has a record 122 overall career victories at the track entering this week’s events.

Doug Coby (No. 2 Dunleavy’s Repair/HEX Performance Chevrolet)

  • The 2012 and 2014 NWMT champion has 15 wins, eight poles and 88 top 10s in 170 career starts.
  • Ranks third in points after 13 events and has a tour-best five victories, which is tied for his career-high (2012).
  • Has six wins, three poles, 24 top 10s and an average finish of 12th in 43 career NWMT starts at Stafford.
  • Has 18 career NWAAS victories at Stafford, including six in SK Modifieds.

 Patrick Emerling (No. 07 Buffalo Auto Auction Chevrolet)

  • Has two poles and 24 top 10s in 67 career starts with a best finish of second last week at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Both poles were earned this year.
  • Ranks fifth in points this year on the strength of a career-high eight top 10s.
  • Has a pole (Aug. 2015), five top 10s, an average finish of 16th and a best run of fifth (Sept. 2014) in 19 Stafford starts.

Eric Goodale (No. 58 GAF Roofing/Supreme Skylights Chevrolet)

  • Has a win, a pole and 44 top 10s in 99 career starts. The win came in June 2013 at Riverhead.
  • Maintains the NWMT’s active starts streak lead, now at 97 races.
  • Ranks sixth in points after 13 races with a career-best nine top 10s.
  • Has eight top 10s, an average finish of 14.5 and a best result of fourth (April 2015) in 28 career Stafford races.

Donny Lia (No. 8 Sypher Construction/Bardahl Chevrolet)

  • The 2007 and 2009 NWMT champion has 17 wins, 21 poles and 85 top 10s in 167 career starts.
  • Seven top 10s in 13 starts this year has him eighth in the points standings.
  • Has four wins, eight poles, 26 top 10s and an average finish of 11th in 43 career Stafford appearances.

Woody Pitkat (No. 88 Buzz Chew Chevrolet/Elbow East Chevrolet)

  • Has three wins, four poles and 55 top 10s in 104 career starts.
  • Is the championship points leader with a tour-high 10 top-five finishes, highlighted by a win in the Spring Sizzler. Also won the non-points All-Star Shootout in July at NHMS.
  • Has two wins, 18 top 10s and an average finish of 12.5 in 29 NWMT races at Stafford.
  • Has 28 career wins in Stafford’s SK Modified division. His 75 overall career feature wins at the track rank second all-time behind Ted Christopher

Ryan Preece (No. 6 TS Haulers/East West Marine Chevrolet)

  • The 2013 NWMT champion has 15 wins, 14 poles, 39 podiums, 54 top fives and 76 top 10s in 121 career starts.
  • Has four wins and 12 top 10s in 13 races to rank second in the 2015 championship standings.
  • Has five wins, four poles, 19 top 10s and an average finish of 11th in 33 NWMT Stafford races.
  • Earned the 2011 NWAAS Stafford track title in SK Modifieds, where he has 25 career wins.

Bobby Santos (No. 44 Tinio Corp./Dan Kelley/Curb Records Chevrolet)

  • The 2010 NWMT champion has 13 wins, 16 poles and 58 top 10s in 105 career events.
  • Sits ninth in points with eight top 10s in 12 starts and a best result of third, recorded on two occasions.
  • The active leader with nine poles at Stafford, where he has six wins, 17 top 10s and an average finish of 10th in 27 races.

Ron Silk (No. 15 15-40 Connection/LFR Chassis Chevrolet)

  • The 2011 NWMT champion has nine wins, eight poles and 86 top 10s in 145 career starts.
  • Has participated in seven of 13 events this year with a best run of third last week at NHMS.
  • Has a win (May 2011), two poles, 19 top 10s and an average finish of 14th in 37 career NWMT races at Stafford.

Timmy Solomito (No. 16 Diversified Metals/R.B. Enterprises Ford)

  • The 2014 Sunoco Rookie of the Year has a pole and 15 top 10s in 33 career starts with a best finish of third at Riverhead in September 2013 and at Stafford this June.
  • Ranks seventh in points with seven top 10s through 13 events.
  • Has an average finish of 13th with a best run of third (June 2015) in nine career Stafford races.

Todd Szegedy (No. 4 Montanari Fuel Dodge)

  • The 2003 NWMT champion has 19 wins, 10 poles and 124 top 10s in 200 career starts.
  • Sits fourth in points with nine top 10s in 13 outings in his first year with Mystic Missile Racing. Won at NHMS in July.
  • Has four wins, two poles, 30 top 10s and an average finish of 9.5 in 51 career NWMT starts at Stafford.

Other Driver Notes

  • A six-time winner in Stafford’s SK Modified division this year, Ronnie Williams is set to make his NWMT debut in this event.
  • Rookie Matt Swanson made his NWMT debut in the tour’s last visit to Stafford in August with a finish of 15th.
  • Recent Stafford NWAAS alum Troy Talman has an average finish of 18th in three NWMT races there this year.
  • This will be James Civali’s first race at Stafford since the August 2011 event.

Up To Speed:

  • This is the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour’s 30th Anniversary season. The inaugural race was contested March 31, 1985 at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park.
  • The 2015 schedule features 15 points races at seven different tracks across four states.
  • Doug Coby opened up his title defense with a win from the pole in the Thompson Icebreaker 150 on April 12.
  • Woody Pitkat earned the NAPA Spring Sizzler 200 victory on April 26 at Stafford Motor Speedway.
  • Ryan Preece emerged victorious at New London-Waterford Speedbowl in the Mr. Rooter 161 on May 30.
  • Preece made it two-in-a-row with a victory in the TSI Harley-Davidson 125 on June 5 at Stafford.
  • Coby won at Thompson for the second consecutive outing with the Mr. Rooter 125 victory on June 10.
  • The Riverhead Hoosier Tire East 200 was postponed one day by rain, then dominated in victory by Justin Bonsignore.
  • Todd Szegedy won the Andy Blacksmith 100 presented by Donate Life New England on July 18 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
  • Coby notched the first bullring win of his career on July 25 when he reached Victory Lane at Monadnock Speedway in the O’Reilly Auto Parts 200.
  • Preece made it two-in-a-row at Stafford when he won the Call Before You Dig 150 on Aug. 7.
  • Coby moved to three-for-three in 2015 at Thompson when he won the Budweiser King of Beers 150 on Aug. 12.
  • Preece notched his first Bristol victory when he won the rain-delayed and abbreviated Bush’s Beans 150 on Aug. 19.
  • Bonsignore turned in the 2015 Riverhead sweep as he won the Riverhead 200 on Aug. 29.
  • Coby won from the pole at NHMS on Sept. 26.
  • Following the NAPA Fall Final 150, the NWMT will close out the 2015 season on Oct. 18 at Thompson.

Elliott Going for a Second All American 400 Guitar this October

(Bruce Nuttleman Photo)
(Bruce Nuttleman Photo)

(Nashville Tenn) With an open day from his NASCAR schedule which happened to coincide with one of the most prestigious short track races in the country, Chase Elliott found an opportunity to race that he couldn’t pass up.

Elliott, the 2014 NASCAR XFINITY Series champion, is throwing his hat back in the short track ring on October 4 at the All American 400 at Tennessee’s Fairgrounds Speedway Nashville. The 2013 winner of the All American 400, Elliott already has one of the track’s famed guitar trophies to his credit and will be making the trip to Nashville from the NASCAR XFINITY event in Dover, Delaware that weekend in search of a second.

“Nashville is a super-cool track,” Elliott told Speed51.com powered by JEGS. “It’s a unique facility. We’ve been fortunate enough to go up there a couple times and won the 400 back in 2013.

“We race on Saturday in Dover (in the XFINITY Series) and I just saw an opportunity to go. I know that moving forward to next year that Sunday may not be open with the (NASCAR Sprint) Cup race being on Sunday, so this may be my last opportunity to do that race for a little while.”

Elliott has competed in the All American 400 on two previous occasions, finishing second in the ARCA/CRA Super Series portion of the event in 2010 and winning the 2013 Southern Super Series AA400. This will be the first time that Elliott will compete in a Pro Late Model version of the AA400 and victory remains his main objective.

Chase Elliot (Bruce Nuttleman Photo)
Chase Elliot (Bruce Nuttleman Photo)

“It definitely is about going and having fun and having an opportunity to go short track racing, but being a racer you want to go win,” said Elliott. “The main goal is to try to win the race. Nashville is known for giving out the guitar and I think that’s one of the coolest trophies you can have. I’d love to go back and get one.”

Logistically, Elliott already has plans to venture from Dover to Nashville in time for the October 4 race day, but he will need a little bit of help from another racer to get his No. 9 Pro Late Model dialed in and qualified.

“I’m trying to find somebody to practice and qualify the car while I’m in Dover,” added Elliott. “Hopefully whoever will be driving the car can get it good and close for Sunday so we can go out there and have a good day. We’ll try to make the right decisions to put a good weekend together.”

Elliott will take on the top Pro Late Model drivers in the nation in the 31st Annual All American 400 on Sunday October 4 at the historic Fairgrounds Speedway Nashville in Nashville, Tennessee.

The All American 400 weekend kicks off on Friday, October 2 with an optional afternoon full of practice for the AA400 Late Models and the track’s local divisions that will be competing throughout the weekend.

On-track activity officially kicks off on Saturday, October 3 with practice and Pro Late Model AA400 qualifying. The 28 fastest drivers in qualifying will be locked into Sunday’s feature, while the rest will attempt to qualify for the race through Saturday night’s AA400 100-lap Last Chance Race. Adding to the excitement for Saturday night is a 40-lap Limited Late Model feature as well.

 

‘Smoke’ Signals Exit

KANNAPOLIS, NC - SEPTEMBER 30:  Tony Stewart,   (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Stewart-Haas Racing via Getty Images)
KANNAPOLIS, NC – SEPTEMBER 30: Tony Stewart, (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Stewart-Haas Racing via Getty Images)

Stewart To Retire After 2016 Season; Passes Torch To Bowyer In 2017

KANNAPOLIS, N.C. (Sept. 30, 2015) – After 17 years competing at NASCAR’s highest level, Tony Stewart has decided his 18th year in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series will be his last. The three-time series champion will retire following the 2016 season, whereupon Clint Bowyer will take the wheel of the No. 14 machine beginning in 2017.

Since 2009 Stewart has held the dual title of driver/owner at Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR). He co-owns the team with Gene Haas, founder of Haas Automation, the largest CNC machine tool builder in North America. Stewart will join Haas as a fulltime owner in 2017, with Bowyer being Stewart’s hand-picked successor to drive the No. 14 car.

“This is a moment every driver eventually comes to terms with, and I know this is the right decision for me,” said Stewart, owner of 48 Sprint Cup victories, 15 of which have come with SHR. “2016 will be my last year in a Sprint Cup car, but it’s not my last year in NASCAR. I love this sport and I love being a part of it, and instead of seeing me in a firesuit on Sundays, you’ll see me in a pair of jeans, and maybe even a pair of khakis.

HOMESTEAD, FL -  Tony Stewart,(Photo by Robert Laberge/Getty Images).
HOMESTEAD, FL – Tony Stewart,(Photo by Robert Laberge/Getty Images).

“I plan to make the most of my final year as a driver in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, and part of that is to ensure that when Clint Bowyer takes over the No. 14 in 2017, he has everything he needs to win races and contend for the championship. I’m very comfortable with this decision and what the future holds for me and Stewart-Haas Racing.”

Bowyer is an eight-time race winner in the Sprint Cup Series and finished second in the 2012 championship standings.

“Today is an incredible opportunity and I’m proud and excited to take over the No. 14 in 2017,” said Bowyer, the 2008 NASCAR Xfinity Series champion. “Whether it’s racing him on Sunday or watching my dirt late model teams race at his famed Eldora Speedway, Tony and I share the same passion for racing. That makes this opportunity a perfect fit for me. I appreciate everything he’s done for me and the sport of auto racing. These are big shoes to fill, but boy am I ever looking forward to getting behind the wheel of a champion’s ride, and have Tony there with me along the way.”

Haas, who formed Haas CNC Racing in 2002 before partnering with Stewart to create SHR in 2009, embraces the transition.

“Tony Stewart has been a game-changer for Stewart-Haas Racing and for motorsports,” Haas said. “I always had an incredible amount of respect for what he could do with a racecar – any racecar, as he’s been successful in everything he’s ever driven. In getting to know Tony Stewart the businessman, I found a very smart person with excellent people skills. He’s extremely valuable to our race team and a strong voice in our sport. His passion for motorsports is unmatched, and I’m proud that his future outside of the No. 14 Chevrolet remains with Stewart-Haas Racing.”

The primary partners currently represented on the No. 14 Chevrolet include Bass Pro Shops, Mobil 1, Rush Truck Centers, Code 3 Associates, Coca-Cola, Jimmy Johns and Haas Automation. Announcements regarding the partnership lineup for the No. 14 team in 2016 and beyond will be made in the lead up to the 58th Daytona 500 on Feb. 21 at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway.

“I have been blessed with fantastic partners throughout my racing career, and I take a lot of pride in the lifelong friendships formed and the great business successes we’ve been a part of,” Stewart said. “I never would’ve accomplished all that I’ve achieved in racing if it weren’t for the support of corporate America. They helped a kid from Columbus, Indiana, reach his dreams and I’ll be forever grateful.”

 

About Stewart-Haas Racing:

Stewart-Haas Racing is the title-winning NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team co-owned by three-time Sprint Cup champion Tony Stewart and Gene Haas, founder of Haas Automation – the largest CNC machine tool builder in North America. The team fields four entries in the elite Sprint Cup Series – the No. 14 Bass Pro Shops/Mobil 1 Chevrolet for Stewart, the No. 10 GoDaddy Chevrolet for Danica Patrick, the No. 4 Budweiser/Jimmy John’s Chevrolet for Kevin Harvick and the No. 41 Haas Automation Chevrolet for Kurt Busch. Based in Kannapolis, North Carolina, Stewart-Haas Racing operates out of a 200,000-square-foot facility with approximately 280 employees. For more information, please visit us on the Web at www.StewartHaasRacing.com, on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/StewartHaasRacing, on Twitter @StewartHaasRcng and on Instagram @StewartHaasRacing.