By: Steven Petty
Photo: Kristen Ruble
LANCASTER, NY (July 31, 2021) …It was an emotional win for Orchard Park, NY’s Patrick Emerling as the hometown hero won the Nu-Way Auto Parts 150 for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour on Saturday night at New York International Raceway Park at Lancaster Speedway. For Emerling, it was his second Tour win of the season and etched his name in the history books as he became the inaugural winner of the Whelen Modified Tour event at the historic ½ mile oval. Shawn Nye from Lancaster, NY won the 30-lap Sportsman feature for the first time in 2021. West Seneca, NY’s Ken Maltby held off Mark Hoch to score the win in the Street Stocks. David Brunka from Cheektowaga, NY won his third 4 Cylinder feature of the season.
Jon McKennedy and Max McLaughlin was on the front row for the Nu-Way Auto Parts 150, and it was McKennedy taking over the point. The first yellow flag of the event fell on lap 27 as Woody Pitkat spun in turn one and hit the Thermal Foam wall. The restart on lap 36 would once again see McKennedy in the lead and would start to check out on the field. With McKennedy out front, Justin Bonsignore and Patrick Emerling made their presence felt as the top two in Tour points moved into second and third respectively. Bonsignore would take the lead away on lap 90, with Emerling moving into second the following lap after passing McKennedy. Emerling would make his move as he would pass Bonsignore to take over the lead on lap 120. After a long green-flag run, the caution would wave on lap 125 as Scott Wylie and Walter Sutcliffe Jr got together in turn two, with both being able to continue racing. After the ensuing restart, the caution would reappear as a multi-car incident took place on lap 134 as Eric Goodale, Doug Colby, Jon McKennedy, and Anthony Nocella all got together in turn one. On the restart, Emerling was leading the field with Bonsignore and “Mad Max” Max McLaughlin entering the picture for the battle for the lead.
The fourth and final caution of the event would wave with just eight laps remaining for another multi-car incident in turn one. That incident ended the night for local competitor Mike Leaty. Bonsignore would retake the lead on the restart, but the lead was short-lived as Emerling used his home track knowledge to take back the lead.
Emerling would hold off Bonsignore and McLaughlin to score the win. The victory for Emerling allowed him to close the gap for the Whelen Modified Tour points lead, as the Orchard Park driver trails Justin Bonsignore by six points entering their next scheduled event at Stafford Springs, CT on August 6.
For those wishing the watch the race again, the Nu-Way Auto Parts 150 will be shown via tape-delay on NBCSN on Wednesday, August 11th at 2 pm ET. Alex Hayden and Dave Moody from the Motor Racing Network will be on the call and speedway announcer Steven Petty is on pit road covering the action. Check your local cable/satellite/tv provider for a channel in your area.
Mark Pennell and Shawn Nye brought the Sportsman to the green flag for their 30-lap feature and with Nye showing the way. John Barber would take over second early on with Nye showing the way. Trevor Catalano spun in turn two to bring out the races’ first caution. Timmy Lewis Jr hit the turn two wall as part of that incident. On the restart, Nye and Barber would take off with Tyler Catalano, bobby Weber, and Jimmy Zacharias raced in the top five. Andy Jankowiak raced in sixth and George Skora III took over seventh. The battle for fifth between Zacharias, Jankowiak, and Skora was an instant classic as the trio battled for several laps, with Jankowiak taking over fifth at the halfway mark. Nye would pull away from the field to pick up the win.
Garrett Cleversley and Kyle Schosek were on the front row for the Street Stocks feature and it was Schosek showing the way. Ken Maltby would take the lead away on lap two and would start to pull away from the field. Tommy Wentland would take over third as the lead trio would pull away from the field Rich Sharpe would work his way through the field and would challenge Wentland for third during the second half of the race. Wentland and Sharpe made contact with less than five laps remaining to bring out the caution. Mark Hoch would take over second on the restart and would challenge Maltby for the lead. Maltby would hold off a hard-charging Hoch to score his first win of the season.
Casey Pew and Chris Deyoe Jr brought the 4 Cylinders to the green flag for the Rusty Diamond Cores 20 with Pew showing the way. Kyle Casper took over second and Dan Dressel would follow into third early on. Dressel would hit the foam off turn four but was able to continue on racing. David Brunka would take over the lead following a lap six caution and would pull away from the field. Brunka pulled away to pick up his third win of the season.
Speedway management would like to thank all the marketing partners that made this show possible; Nu-Way Auto Parts, Valvoline, Army National Guard, Thermal Foams, Elma Press, West Herr Automotive Group, Franco’s Pizza, Russell’s Steaks, Chops, & More, JJ Supply of North Carolina, Skylighters of WNY, and Speed Enterprises Entertainment. Track management would also like to thank Rusty Diamond Cores for their support of the Sportsman, Street Stock, and 4 Cylinder programs.
Racing returns on Thursday, August 5 for the “Legends of Lancaster Night”, featuring the Ken “Hurricane” Heckler Memorial 51 for the Street Stocks. The Sportsman, 4 Cylinders and the Jerry Gradl Motors NYPA TQ Midgets will be on the program. Pit gates will open at 2:30 pm, grandstand gates will open at 5, practice will begin at 5:30 pm, and racing will get underway at 7:00 pm. Grandstand admission is $18 for adults and kids ages 11 and under are FREE. Military, Veterans, and First Responders can receive ½ off admission with a valid ID. For more information, check out www.lancastermotorsportspark.com and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and now on Instagram.
RACE RESULTS – NU-WAY AUTO PARTS 150 NIGHT SUMMARY
WHELEN MODIFIED TOUR: PATRICK EMERLING, Justin Bonsignore, Max McLaughlin, Jon McKennedy, Eric Goodale, Tyler Rypkema, Chuck Hossfeld, JB Fortin, Doug Coby, Kyle Bonsignore, Timmy Solomito, Ron Silk, Ken Heagy, Andy Jankowiak, Walter Sutcliffe Jr, Scott Wylie, Tommy Catalano, Anthony Nocella, Mike Leaty, Melissa Fifield, Jim Gavek Jr, Craig Lutz, Woody Pitkat
Mayhew Dominator Fast Time: Jon McKennedy (17.285 seconds – 104.137mph)
SPORTSMAN: SHAWN NYE, John Barber, Tyler Catalano, Andy Jankowiak, George Skora III, Bob Weber, Trevor Catalano, Jimmy Zacharias, Owen Bednasz, TJ Potrzebowski, Bob Reis, Mark Pennell, Joe Evans, Dave Kozlowski, Jeff Szafraniec, Eric Brown, Cameron Ruggiero, Timmy Lewis, John Wilbur
Qualifying Heats: Bobby Weber, Shawn Nye
STREET STOCKS: KEN MALTY, Mark Hoch, Dave Krawczyk, Mike Dalfonso, Tim Garlock, Bob Palmer, Jon Carlson, Tyler Day, Garrett Cleversley, Jim Dauer, Tommy Wentland, Jason Anasiewicz, Mike Rogers, Al Piasecki, Rich Sharpe, Bobby Blaszak Jr, Ed Culliton, Kyle Schosek, Matt Friend, Nik Welshans, Max Northem, Wes LaBar, Brian Hoffman (Did Not Start), Jerry Kosmowski (Did Not Start), Scott Soos (Did Not Start), Frank Prell (Disqualified)
Qualifying Heats: Rich Sharpe, Ken Maltby,
4 CYLINDERS: DAVID BRUNKA, Kyle Casper, Charles Palmer, Kenny Hejna, Casey Pew, Chris Deyoe Jr, Tim Durfy, Dan Dressel, Ryan Lent, Mason Offhaus, Andy Danielwicz, Jonathan Klamut
Qualifying Heats: Dan Dressel, Charles Palmer