Riverhead, NY Aug. 6th
Despite being under the weather during the week, Dylan Slepian of Dix Hills felt just fine Saturday at Riverhead Raceway once strapped into his NASCAR Modified. He felt even better at the end of 50-laps after executing a late race outside pass of Jack Handley Jr. of Medford to score his second win of the season. In the companion Sare Sylvester Memorial INEX Legend Race Car National Qualifier controversy reined after four of the top five finishers were DQ’D in post race tech. Cam Bolin of Sharon, NC who crossed the line second was declared the race winner, his third win in as many starts at Riverhead. An astounding 170 cars took part in the action Saturday.
Eric Zeh and Chris Turbush brought the 18-car NASCAR Modified field to green and it didn’t take long for the fireworks. Exiting the fourth turn to complete the first lap Zeh moved up to make Turbush uncomfortable on the outside leaving the inside lane wide open. Seeing that Jason Agugliaro shot the gap under Zeh and Turbush and the trio raced three wide into the first turn. By the time they got to turn three Zeh and Turbush wound up in a pile damaging the exit gate and were done for the night. When told he had to go to the rear for his role Agugliaro withdrew from the race. When the race resumed Jack Handley Jr. who started fourth raced out to the lead with Justin Brown in pursuit, both drivers seeking their first career win. Brown soon came under pressure from Dylan Slepian who sliced his way through the pack from the 10th starting berth and on lap 15 Slepian was able to pass Brown for position.
Once to second Slepian had to first work on getting to leader Handley which he did and then master a plan of attack. Handley was doing a masterful job while leading of protecting the bottom letting Dylan know if he was going to get by it would be to the outside. Slepian however kept looking low off the corners as his way by for the lead but now the laps were dwindling down. Then with five laps remaining Slepian changed his plan of attack and moved to the outside. It took a lap or two before Slepian was able to gain enough of a run to Handley’s outside but final on lap 46 exiting the second turn Slepian took the long way around Handley for the race lead by the time lap 47 was started.
Over the final three laps Dylan Slepian kept his Eastport Feeds Chevy out front for the victory, the 6th of his career. “That kid (Handley) is a talented racer, his day is coming” Slepian boasted in the winners circle, “we had a great, clean and fun race, I thought I could get him to the inside but Jack, like he should protected the bottom, so outside I went”. Dylan unable to get to the race shop during the week heaped praise on his crew, “I wasn’t able to be with Rob and the guys this week but the carried on and here we are, can’t thank them all enough”.
Jack Handley Jr. was runner-up in the Hydro Action Chevy, while Justin Brown of Manorville was third in the Kennedy L.I. Realty Chevy. Chris Young of Calverton and Roger Turbush of Riverhead were fourth and fifth.
The Sara Sylvester Memorial 50 INEX Legend Race Car National Qualifier was a barn burner on the track but even hotter in post race inspection two hours after the race. Jason Castaldo of Shirley was the quickest in qualifying with a lap of 13.466 and proceeded to lead all 50-laps of the race, at times under heavy attack. Among those throwing heat Castaldo’s way were Ray Fitzgerald, Mike Alcaro and lastly Cam Bolin. It was Bolin who gave Castaldo his biggest challenge of the race but Jason was equal to the task and appeared to have won the biggest race of his career. However in post race tech the springs of the top five were under scrutiny and four of the top five, including winner Jason Castaldo were found with unapproved springs. Others were George Tomko Jr., Joey Braun and Fitzgerald. Cam Bolin in the Benimax Trucking entry was declared the race winner, a win worth well over $1,000 once all the lap and bonus money are recalculated after the disqualifications. Eric Hersey of Commack was second in the Grillin’ Villain machine with Richie Davidowitz of East Moriches third in the Hampton Fleet Service entry.
For the second time in three weeks Vinny Delaney of Islip Terrace scored the win in the 25-lap Crate Modified feature event but this win came in perhaps the closest finish ever at the track. Just days after losing his Figure Eight crew chief Rick Swanson and having been close with Sara Sylvester, Delaney was a man on a mission. Vinny, starting from the pole shot to the early race lead chased early on by Alex Colasanto. On lap 5 Chris Rogers who started 5th on the grid worked his way by Colasanto and moved in on leader Delaney. Over the final 21 laps Delaney and Rogers treated the fans to a torrid side by side at time fight for the win. Rogers actually led laps 11 & 12 but a double file restart on that 12th lap allowed Delaney to move back to the lead. Over the final 13 laps of the tilt it was the Vinny & Chris show, racing side by side more often than not including the final lap of the race. As the duo exited the fourth turn they were in a virtual dead heat and remained in that formation until the checker flag. To the naked eye it was too close to call, but in the day of electronic transponder scoring Vinny Delaney in the Stakey’s Pumpkin Farm Chevy winning by .002 on the transponder. It perhaps was the closest finish in the history of Riverhead Raceway. Chris Rogers of Patchogue was runner-up in the MMC Construction Chevy, while Chase Grennan of Glen Cove watched it all from third, where he would finish in the Black Forest Auto Works Chevy.
Just seven weeks removed from heart surgery veteran Tom Sullivan of Massapequa was in the right place at the right time to win a wild 20-lap Blunderbust feature event.Five lead changes unfolded during the race that with two drivers penalized during the event for rough riding. With two laps to go Jim Laird Jr., who was made to give a spot back earlier in the race found himself the race leader with defending champion Cody Triola hot on his heels. Triola would get into Laird spinning the leader and he was sent to the rear with Laird. That turn of events put the Island Trees Automotive Chevy of Tom Sullivan into the lead for a green, white & checker finish with Sullivan with a new valve in his heart driving to victory. Bill Wegmann Jr, of Patchogue was runner-up in the Crackerjack Auto Stores racer while Preston Bores of Hendersonville, Tn. was third in the Relle Electric Chevy.
Another closely contested race was the 20-lap Super Pro Truck event with defending champion Jack Handley Jr coming out on top after a torrid late race battle with Sean Glennon of Northport. Joe Cerabino raced to the early lead with Ethan Brown second. Early on Cerabino got away from Brown and the rest of the field but just as the race hit halfway Lou Maestri and Mark Stewart got together on lap 10, bunching up the fiel for the restart. That brought Sean Glennon who started the race from 8th into the mix and when the race resumed he made an inside pass of Cerabino on the front stretch for the race lead on lap 12. One lap later Jack Handley who started 7th got by Cerabino for second and the race was on. Glennon and Handley went toe to toe and on lap 16 Handley was able to work his way to the lead with Glennon now the challenger. Sean went to work trying to reclaim his lead and the duo ran a hard fought but clean race for the gold. Jack Handley Jr. in the River Walk Bar & Grill Chevy was the race winner, while Sean Glennon of Northport settled for second in his LTE Drainage Chevy. Early leader Joe Cerabino of Bay Shore was third in the Lighthouse Propane entry.
Ben Morabito of Miller Place won his first career home race at Riverhead Raceway when he drove the Benimax Trucking Bandolero Bandit to victory in a 15-lap contest. Morabito took the lead on lap 2 from newcomer Phllip Alaimo and had to hold off a hard pressing Rodney Dowless Jr. of Dix Hills who finished second in his sponsor wanted Bando. Darren Krantz Jr. of Huntington was third in the Pinktie.org racer.
Chevy Rommeney of Bohemia won his third Bandolero Outlaw race of the season as he dominated their 15-lap feature. Julianna Kramer led the first lap before Rommeney moved to the lead in his Hollis Court Collision machine. Once out front Rommeney never looked back earning his 5th career win. Will Sipala of Manorville was second in the Riteway Auto mount with Gavin Romano of Riverhead third in the Mil-Aero Solutions entry.
Jarrett Campbell of Yaphank won his second Truck Enduro of 2022 when he topped their 30-lap contest. Campbell in the Lake Masonry Sullies Chevy took the lead on lap 9 and stayed out front for the rest of the race. Phil LaManna of Smithtown was second in the EP Milling & Sweeping S-10 while Mariah Lawrence of Southampton recovered from an early race spin for third place honors in the Unique Golf truck.,
For the second time in 72-hours Joey Palmeri Jr of Lindenhurst sat in victory lane at the end of the 40-lap Gut & Go 4/6-Cylinder Enduro in his J&J Towing sled. Joe Warren Jr. of Ridge was second in the MSM Motorsports entry while Chris Olivari of Coram crossed the line third.
NASCAR Modifieds: 1. Dylan Slepian 2. Jack Handley Jr. 3. Justin Brown 4. Chris Young 5. Roger Turbush 6. Kyle Soper 7. Michael Rutkoski 8. Dave Brigati 9. Jeff Goodale 10. John Beatty Jr. 11. Chris Rogers 12. Artie Pedersen III 13. Allan Pedersen 14. Glen Steger 15. Brian Brown 16. Eric Xeh 17. Chris Turbush 18. Jason Agugliaro
Crate Modifieds 1. Vinny Delaney 2. Chris Rogers 3. Chase Grennan 4. Kyle Ellwood 5. Eric Hersey 6. Terry Stiles 7. Alex Colasanto 8. AJ DeSantis 9. Owen Grennan 10. Michael Rutkoski 11. Mike Albasini 12. Michael Berner 13. Dennis Krupski 14. Charles Macwhinnie 15. Mark Wolf 16. DJ Doyle 17. Scott Denis 18. Max Handley
Blunderbusts: 1. Tom Sullivan 2. Bill Wegmann Jr. 3. Preston Bores 4. Bill Wegmann Sr. 5. Eddie Diaz 6. Cody Triola 7. Brandon Hubbard 8. AJ DeSantis 9. Jim Laird Jr. 10. Tom Puccia 11. Gary Caldwell DNS-Brad Bess
Super Pro Trucks: 1. Jack Handley Jr. 2. Sean Glennon 3. Joe Cerabino 4. Frank Dumicich Sr. 5. Lou Maestri 6. Ethan Brown 7. Mark Stewart 8. Matt McGrath 9. Rob Corwin 10. Liam Patrick 11. Matt Triola 11. Daniel Creegan
Legend Race Cars: 1. Cam Bolin 2. Eric Hersey 3. Richie Davidowitz 4. Jeff Farruggia Jr. 5. Nick Morabito 6. Anthony Marsh 7. Mike Benton 8. Anthony Colandro 9. Jim Sylvester 10. Joe Costello 11. Brad Van Houten 12. Mike Van Houten Jr. 13. Ray Stulz 14. Chris Sinatro 15. Mike Alcaro 16. Chase Van Houten 17. Jake Curran 18. Riely O’Keefe 19. Landon Rapp 20. Charlie Hodge 21. Zach Martinez 22. Ryan Lutz DQ- Jason Castaldo, George Tomko Jr., Joey Braun & Ray Fitzgerald
Bandolero Bandits: 1. Ben Morabito 2. Rodney Dowless Jr. 3. Darren Krantz Jr. 4. Phillip Alaimo 5. Kix Bock 6. Nick Hodge 7. Giavanna Agugliaro 8. Carson Cauble 9. Reid Halpin 10. Jordan Ryan 11. Brooke Meyer 12. Emmett Grattan 13. Nora Schelin 14. Aiden Pelis
Bandolero Outlaws: 1. Chevy Rommeney 2. Will Sipala 3. Gavin Romano 4. Tucker Bock 5. Jayden Owens-Bader 6. Julianna Kramer 7. Hayle Denis 8. Marissa Stewart
Truck Enduro: 1. Jarrett Campbell 2. Phil LaManna 3. Mariah Lawrence 4. Gary Voight 5. Woot Lawrence 6. Dusty Cole 7. Kerry Botts 8. Jackie Germuth 9. Chris Grover 10. Brandon LaManna 11. Steve Reisert 12. Whitney Williams 13. Danielle Cohen 14. Chloe Phillips 15. Jennifer Hohwiesner 16. Kayla Kelly 17. Hallie Campo 18. Nikki Giordano 19. Mark Russo 20. Emily Hubbard 21. Tom Sullivan
Gut & Go Enduro: 1. Joey Palmeri Jr. 2. Joe Warren Jr. 3. Chris Olivari 4. Frank Raynor 5. John Palmeri 6. Peter Verwys Jr. 7. Chris Constantine 8. Rob Izzo 9. David Olivari 10. Franky Abbatiello 11. Patrick Collins Jr. 12. Patrick McGay 13. Robert Jett 14. Anthony Paretta 15. David Duran 16. Ally Turbush 17. Michael Sheridan 18. Will Raynor 19. Kevin Coyle 20. Sean Neenan 21. Andy Earnharht 22. Mark Raynor 23. Jessie Haaar 24. Jeremy Rand 25. Zach Tyler 26. Charles Astacio 27. Zachary Moritz 28. Tyler Pasquale 29. Nick Johnson