by Bob Finan  –  The Northeastern Midget Association is headed back to Long Island after a long absence Saturday May 28th when they compete in the Allan Cantor Memorial 50 at Riverhead Raceway. Riverhead GM John Ellwood announced today that the Reichert Group IGA Food Markets has signed on as the title sponsor of the race. IGA Food Markets were also a loyal sponsor on the Allan Cantor owned #7NY NEMA Midgets.

“We’re very excited to have the NEMA Midgets and NEMA Lites back racing on Long Island” John Ellwood noted while making the IGA Food Markets sponsorship announcement. “To have Charlie Reichert and his Reichert Group IGA Food Markets come on board for the race that we honor Allan Cantor makes the event that much sweeter”. The Reichert Group IGA Food Markets on Long Island are located in Greenport, Southold, East Northport, Fort Salonga and Bayville.

From 2001 until 2013 Allan Cantor fielded a NEMA Midget based out of his lifelong hometown of Glen Cove with his son Adam wheeling the potent racer for many of those season. Allan was well known in the Long Island racing circle well before he went midget racing in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s. He along with Tony Contarino designed and built the ultra successful Alto Chassis for the Mini Modified race cars. Allan along with his brother Barry also worked with the late “Tiger” Tom Baldwin on his NASCAR Modifieds and together operated Cantor’s Garage in Glen Cove.

When Eddie & Connie Partridge and Tom Gatz took ownership of Riverhead Raceway late in 2015 they had John Ellwood look into some new and exciting forms of racing to bring to Riverhead Raceway and one of the first John called was NEMA President Russ Stoehr. They together put together the May 28th date for the Allan Cantor Memorial. Later in the summer the New England Truck Series will also visit Riverhead on July 9th, with the Granite State Pro Stocks set to visit on July 30th.

2015 NEMA Midget champion John Zych Jr. of Mendon, MA will lead the charge to Riverhead Raceway on the 28th along with 2015 NEMA Lites kingpin Anthony Payne of Fair Lawn, N.J.

Joining NEMA on what will be a very nostalgic night are the Vintage Midget Racing Club and Vintage Race Cars as well the annual Cromarty Wall of Fame inductions. Long time car owner the late John Ambrose Sr., NASCAR Modified standout the late Chris Young and multi time Late Model champion Steve Tooker will be enshrined that evening.

The NASCAR Modifieds will run a 40-lap main event on May 28th and be joined by the Riverhead Modified Crates and Legend Race Cars, who will both run 20-lap features. Feature event racing will start at 6:30 pm.

For additional information visit www.riverheadraceway.com
or call 631-842-RACE.

Bonsignore Set to Make NEMA Debut in Cantor Memorial at Riverhead

Joseph Fernandez Photo.

NASCAR Whelen Modified tour driver, Justin Bonsignore, is set to make his Northeastern Midget Association debut on Saturday May 28th at Riverhead Raceway in the inaugural Allan Cantor Memorial. Bonsignore will be teaming up with Tim Bertrand/Bertrand Motorsports, playing part to a three car card that evening with the team’s full time drivers, Todd Bertrand and five time NEMA champion, Randy Cabral.

A winner of six World Karting Association titles and eight NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour (NWMT) events, Bonsignore is no stranger to victory lane. He was also the 2010 NWMT rookie of the year, and named the tour’s most popular driver in 2011.

“I am really excited and honored to get the chance to drive for the Bertrand family, they build and prepare some amazing looking cars, and they are extremely fast as well. I have always kept up with watching the NEMA races when we are there with the modifieds and more often than not the Bertrand cars are in victory lane, it was pretty awesome to have Tim reach out and ask me to drive the car,” said Bonsignore.

“I really hope I can get up to speed quickly and feel comfortable, the only thing I have driven in comparison is a TQ midget over the winter, but I have a feeling this is going to be a totally different animal, we are hoping to get a test in next week at the Speedbowl to learn the in/out of the cars and get a feel for what I will need to be comfortable. One good thing on my side will be that Tim prepares a great car and I know once the driver is up to speed that the car will already be there. I also know I can reach out to Todd and even Doug Coby for what to look for in the car and what to expect,” he went on to say.

Bo13243899_10153952756564300_3143479317495537623_onsignore will be piloting the #74 Esslinger powered machine, which was driven to two victories last year at Chemung and Waterford by Coby, and at Monadnock by Joey Payne.

Bonsignore is also no stranger to Riverhead, a place that NEMA has not visited in many years. The 2011 Riverhead Raceway modified champion said, on the topic of the midgets coming back – “I think it should produce a great race, I personally have only seen the NEMA cars on a bigger, wider tracks where they seem to get strung out, I think you will see a really close group of cars on a tight little bullring, where there might be a bunch of lead changes, good hard nose racing. Hopefully we are right in the mix of it.”

NEMA will play part of a busy evening on the 28th at Riverhead, as it’s the track’s “Wall of Fame” night, Vintage midget series, and the regular card of racing. It will also be the first NEMA Allan Cantor Memorial race, commemorating the long time club member who passed away last year. Allan’s son, Adam, and family will be on hand, as the Master of Ceremonies as the club remember’s the devoted Cantor.

The relationship between Cantor and Bonsignore also runs deep.

“I think the coolest part of getting the opportunity to drive for the Bertrand family is that it’s going to be in the Inaugural Allan Cantor Memorial. I have known Adam and Allan Cantor since Adam and I were about 8 years old racing go karts out at Westhampton Speedway, Alan was always such a great person and always was nice to me growing up. I know it may be a tall task to win in my first start, but I really want to win this race for that reason more then any other,” he said.

Mahoning Valley Speedway Canceled May 21 Races Due to Weather

(LEHIGHTON, Pa. 5-21-16) For the second straight week Mahoning Valley Speedway has cancelled its Saturday night racing card due to the weather.

Although forecasts are varying with rain that is off and on during the day and possibly parts of the evening, promoter Floyd Santee felt it was in the best interest to call off the show.

The first ever Jr. Enduro event sponsored by Ahner’s Plumbing, Heating and Air Conditioning which was slated to take place has been rescheduled for Saturday, June 18

Coming up on next will be the second leg of the American Rental Street Stock Gamblers Series on May 28. The 75-lap feature is part of the six-race series for the Street Stocks that pays bonus money throughout the selected races.

Also on the program will be Modifieds, Late Models, Dirt Mods, Pro 4s and Hobby Stocks.

Representatives from Pocono Raceway will also be on hand to giveaway tickets to the upcoming NASCAR, Indy Car and ARCA events.

There will be Kids Big Wheel races at intermission.

Adult general admission is $18. There is a $2 discount for students, seniors 65+ and active Military. Grandstands open at 4:00 pm and racing begins at 6:00. Warm-ups will get underway at 4:00. Pit gates will open at 11:30 am for early paid practice.

Coming up on Saturday, June 4 it will be the popular Baltimore Life Insurance Fan Appreciation Night. General admission if just $8 (no discounts). There will be loads of giveaways for the kids plus they can participate in a Pennant Contest with special prize awards to the winners.

During intermission all race cars will be brought out onto the track for a special meet and greet with the drivers.

Please note that the start time for June 4 is 5:00 pm.

For additional information please log onto www.mahoningvalley-speedway.com or on Facebook at Mahoning Valley Speedway.

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