All posts by Michael Jaworecki

ISMA Big-Block Supermodifieds Return To Thompson for World Series

Thompson, CT – Officials from the Pro All Stars Series (PASS) and American-Canadian Tour (ACT) announced today that the Big-Block Supermodifieds of the International Supermodified Association (ISMA) will be returning to Connecticut’s Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park for the 58th Annual World Series of Speedway Racing.  The ISMA Supermodifieds are one of 19 divisions that will be racing at Thompson as part of the World Series from Friday, October 9th through Sunday, October 11.  The breathtaking Big-Block Supermods will compete for 50 laps and join the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour season finale along with the PASS Super Late Models on the final day of racing.

“The ISMA Supermodifieds are one of the most exciting divisions in pavement racing and we are happy to bring them back for their traditional visit to Thompson as part of the World Series,” PASS President Tom Mayberry said.  “The World Series is one of the biggest weekends of racing in New England and we are really happy to provide such a great card of short track racing to our fans.”

The first ISMA Supermodified race to be held at Thompson as part of the World Series was in 1975 and was won by 9-time NASCAR Modified Champion Richie Evans.  Since ISMA returned to the World Series at Thompson in 2010, legendary names like Chris Perley, Ben Seitz, Dave Shullick, Jr., and Jon McKennedy have taken their Supermodifieds to the hallowed frontstretch victory lane.

World Series action begins at Thompson Speedway on Friday, October 9 and will showcase feature races at approximately 6 PM for the STAR Late Models, Open Vintage Modifieds, Mini Stocks, STAR Modifieds, and Street Stock Open.  On Saturday, October 10th, heat races for PASS Super Late Models and ACT Late Models will start at 2 PM, followed by qualifying for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, and features for the North East Mini Stock Tour, Pro 4 Modified, NEMA Midgets, ACT Late Model Open, 350 Supermodifieds and Modified Open.  On Sunday, October 11th, racing starts at 12:30PM featuring the Sunoco Modifieds, PASS Super Late Models, ISMA Supermodifieds, Limited Sportsman, NEMA Lites, SK Modifieds, and NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour.

More information and the complete weekend schedule for the 58th Annual World Series can be found at www.proallstarsseries.comwww.acttour.com/thompson-speedway, or www.thompsonspeedway.com. Advance general admission tickets can be purchased by visiting https://happsnow.com/event/Thompson-Speedway-Motorsports-Park-YHPQ/WORLD-SERIES–NO2QX.

The Pro All Stars Series is recognized as North America’s premier sanctioning body for asphalt Super Late Models and boasts such marquee events as the legendary Oxford 250 at Oxford Plains Speedway and the Easter Bunny 150 at the historic Hickory Motor Speedway.  For technical information concerning all PASS divisions please send questions to passracing@roadrunner.com.  And, don’t forget to “Like” the Pro All Stars Series on Facebook or follow us on Twitter @PASSSLM14 to keep up with breaking news as it happens.

For more information about the World Series of Speedway Racing schedule, contact the ACT offices at (802) 244-6963, media@acttour.com, or visit www.acttour.com/thompson-speedway or www.thompsonspeedway.com. You can also get updates on Facebook and Twitter at @ACTTour.

For camping information and general Thompson Speedway inquires, call (860) 923-2280 or email oval@thompsonspeedway.com. You can follow Thompson Speedway on Facebook and Instagram at @ThompsonSpeedway o

ROGER OXEE & TOMMY WALKOWIAK TO BE INDUCTED ONTO RIVERHEAD RACEWAY WALL OF CHAMPIONS DURING BALDWIN, EVANS & JARZOMBEK 77 PROGRAM SATURDAY OCTOBER 3RD.

Riverhead, NY Sept. 25th.
By Bob Finan

Collectively they both are the all time leading winners in their respective divisions and have combined for 127 victories between them and this Saturday October 3rd at Riverhead Raceway Roger Oxee of Peconic and “The Wildchild” Tommy Walkowiak of Ridge will be enshrined onto the Cromarty Wall of Champions. The induction ceremony will take place during the annual Baladwin, Evans & Jarzombek 77 NASCAR Modified event that will highlight the Advance Auto Parts Weekly Racing series program. 

Ever since posting his first Late Model win over Memorial Day weekend of 1985 on May 25th Roger Oxee embarked on what many consider a legendary driving career that now finds him joining three other LM Cromarty Wall of Champion inductees Peter “Buzzy” Eriksen (48), Paul McElearney (45) and Steve Tooker (30). All told “RJ” as he is known to close family and friends would post 64 career Late Model wins as well as the 2005 LM title. As fast as his cars were week in and week out he also always kept them in immaculate condition no matter what may have transpired the week prior and over the entirety of his career remained popular with fellow competitors and fans alike.

“The Wildchild” Tommy Walkowaik scored his first of 63 Blunderbusts wins on June 30th, 2001 after spending several seasons competing in Spectator Drag, Car Rollover, 8-Cylinder Enduro and Demolition Derby events. It was during a Spectator Drag event that Walkowiak was dubbed “The Wildchild” as he competed in his candy apple red Corvette that was is in showroom condition, he won. Aside from his 63 career victories Walkowiak went on a championship run that found him winning five Blunderbust titles in six years, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2010 & 2011. In fact Walkowiak is only one of four drivers who have won a Blunderbust championship at the track since 2003 with only Scott Maliszewski, Tom Pickerell and Jack Handley Jr. having joined Tommy as champion of the class.

On track Riverhead Raceway will pay homage to three NASCAR Modified legends in presenting the annual Baldwin, Evans & Jarzombek 77. “The Fancy Farmer” Dave Brigati of Calverton won the Baldwin, Evans & Jarzombek 77 in 2019 and if he is to repeat will have his hands full with the likes of Tom Rogers Jr. of Riverhead, Roger Turbush of Riverhead, Dylan Slepian of Dix Hills, Howie Brode of East Islip, Michael Rutkoski of Mattituck, defending champion Kyle Soper of Manorville, Chris Young of Calverton, John Beatty Jr. of Merrick & John Baker of Brookhaven.

The Saturday October 3rd event at the track will be history making as it marks the first time in the 70-year history of the facility racing will take place through the month of October due to the delayed start of the race season due to the Covid-19 worldwide pandemic. With October racing and the cooler temperatures that come with the 10th month of the year qualifying for the Baldwin, Evans & Jarzombek could very well yield a new NASCAR Modified track record. Tom Rogers Jr. set the new benchmark in qualifying prior to The Bubba 150 event on September 19th with a lap of 11.272 and the question might very well be will it stand up come Saturday.

Also in action October 3rd are the Late Models, Crate Modifieds, Blunderbusts, Super Pro Trucks (30-laps, TT), INEX Legends, Vintage All Stars and a Truck Enduro.For those who can’t be at the track for this very special evening you can watch our live stream at RiverheadRaceway.Tv, the link for the live stream along with all other pertinent information can be found at www.riverheadraceway.com. E-mails reach us at Riverheadraceway1@gmail.com and our phone number remains 631-842-RACE.

Justin Bonsignore Looking to End Stafford Winless Streak in NAPA Auto Parts 150

Photo Michael Jaworecki/Myracenews

(Stafford Springs, CT)—Now in his 11th full-time season as a NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour driver, Justin Bonsignore and his #51 Phoenix Communications, Inc. team have established themselves as perennial front runners.  Bonsignore has amassed 29 career wins and he has finished in the top-3 of the points standings for the last 4 years in a row, including a championship run in 2018.  One track that has been a nemesis for Bonsignore over the years has been Stafford Speedway.  Bonsignore has 37 career starts at the Connecticut half-mile track and he has yet to post a victory.  Bonsignore’s best Stafford finish has been second place, which he has achieved four times.  As he and the #51 team prepare for this Saturday’s NAPA Auto Parts 150, Bonsignore is looking to put an end to that winless streak.

“I saw something posted from Stafford that said I was 0-for-37 there and I didn’t know I had that many races at Stafford,” said Bonsignore.  “It’s always on the mind of if and when we can break through.  I think we were the closest we’ve ever been last season at Stafford and we were really looking forward to having 3 shots at winning there this season.  We were really excited with how we ran at Stafford last season to get back there this year and possibly get our first win.  Especially the Sizzler, I would love to win that race but the NAPA 150 is also a prestigious race and we’re happy and thankful we’re able to get back to Stafford in 2020 even if it’s only for one race.  I’m really optimistic that we’ll have a shot at winning this race as long as we have the right strategy.”

In 7 starts this season, Bonsignore has recorded 3 wins, 2 second place finishes, and 2 fifth place finishes.  Dating back to the 2019 season, Bonsignore and the #51 team have recorded 13 consecutive top-5 finishes.  Bonsignore has also completed all 1,247 laps that have been run this season to date and he leads the Whelen Modified Tour field with 390 laps led this season.  Looking at Bonsignore’s 2020 performance, he would have to be ranked among the favorites to win the NAPA 150.  

“This season has definitely been tough for all of us but our season has been really good,” said Bonsignore.  “We started off with back to back wins and we’ve had some good top-5 finishes.  Every race has been a top-5 finish for us so it’s been really successful and we feel like there have been a couple races that we let slip away.  It’s been great to be as competitive as we have been and it just shows how hard Ryan Stone and my entire team work and it’s a pleasure to be able to drive cars that are this good.  Going back to last year, knock on wood we’re on a pretty good top-5 streak.  The goal is always to win or finish in the top-3 every week knowing how good our team is and the potential we have but to not have any issues or an off day where maybe you finish 6th or 7th, it’s a pretty cool stat to have and we’re really proud of that.  If you can be in the top-5 every week you’re going to put yourself into a position to do some really good things.”

Normally when the Whelen Modified Tour rolls into Stafford in September, it’s the third Stafford event of the season.  With the NAPA Auto Parts 150 serving as the one and only NWMT Stafford race this season, teams won’t have any notes from earlier races to fall back on and with a new tire compound and pit stop rule, Bonsignore says fans could be in for a treat when it comes to pit strategy changing up the running order through the NAPA Auto Parts 150.

“This race is going to be different for sure,” said Bonsignore.  “We have different rules this year for pit stops with the tires where we can only take 2 tires per caution period, so that’s kind of a big unknown for everybody and with not running at Stafford yet we don’t know how things will play out but we’ll all watch everything unfold live on Saturday.  We’re also running a different tire compound with a softer tire which I think might open up some different strategy options and it could jumble track position during the race.  I think it’s going to be a crazy race with strategy and we’ll have to make sure we get that right on race day.”

As always, time trials for the NAPA Auto Parts 150 will be important for teams to get the best starting position possible, but Bonsignore says that practice could also play an important role in determining who will be among the front runners once the green flag drops.

“Qualifying will be important to start up front but practice is also going to be important,” said Bonsignore.  “Our pit stalls are determined from our practice speeds so you want to have a strong practice run to possibly get that first pit stall, which will definitely help you out during the race.  We definitely want to try to start on the pole if possible and if we can’t be on pole we want to at least be somewhere in the top-5 to start the race so we can be up front and get into a nice position and not have to race our way through the field and burn up the tires.  As always at Stafford, if you can start up front it can be a huge advantage for how your race is going to play out.”

Bonsignore and the Whelen Modified Tour field will be joined in feature action for the NAPA Auto Parts 150 by Stafford’s SK Lights and Limited Late Models along with the Vintage All-Stars.  General Admission tickets for the NAPA Auto Parts 150 have met the State mandated capacity, but there are still a limited amount of paddock passes available for purchase online through www.staffordspeedway.com.  Tickets will not be sold day of show.

For more information, visit www.staffordspeedway.com, checkout Stafford Speedway on Facebook or Twitter, or contact the track office at 860-684-2783.