Tag Archives: Toyota

Justin Bonsignore Holds Off Matt Hirschman for Toyota Mod Classic Victory

By KYLE SOUZA

Photo Michael Jaworecki/Myracenews

OSWEGO, NY (August 31, 2019) – Justin Bonsignore knew it was going to take a few checkered flags if he wanted to climb his way back into the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour championship battle.

With five races to go, Bonsignore proved on Saturday that he isn’t out of it yet. He scored his fourth victory of the season in the Toyota Mod Classic 150 presented by McDonald’s at Oswego Speedway, earning the victory as part of the track’s annual Classic Weekend.

It was the 24th career win in Whelen Modified Tour competition for Bonsignore and his first at the ‘Steel Palace’ of Oswego.

“It’s unbelievable. There is a lot of history at this track,” he said. “I’ve wanted to win here every time we have come here.”

Bonsignore might not have posted the fastest lap times all day, but, when it mattered, his car shined. For the first 64 laps, he chased the back bumper of Mayhew Tools Dominator Pole winner Rob Summers in the race for the lead. He passed Summers at lap 65, and led through until a caution at lap 99, when Tyler Rypkema spun.

Then, his Phoenix Communications crew went to work. They got him out at the front of the cars that pitted and took fresh tires, but, he had to restart third, behind Patrick Emerling and Tommy Catalano.

It didn’t take him long to get back to the top spot. Before the field exited turn two, he was the leader once again.

Bonsignore had to hold off defending race winner Matt Hirschman on a final dash to the finish, but was able to accomplish the task. While the No. 51 Phoenix Communications Chevrolet struggled to turn through the center of the corners, Bonsignore was able to make it work.

He beat Hirschman to the line by .146 seconds. Following Hirschman, former Whelen Modified Tour champion Ron Silk was third, with Craig Lutz and Bobby Santos III completing the top five.

Doug Coby was sixth, followed by Eric Goodale, Timmy Solomito, Chase Dowling and Tommy Catalano.

Coby leads Bonsignore by 37 points, with Silk 44 back with four races remaining in the championship points schedule.

The Toyota Mod Classic 150 presented by McDonald’s will air on NBCSN on Thursday, September 5, at 6 p.m.

The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour returns to the track for the second appearance at New York’s Riverhead Raceway on Saturday, September 7.

4th Annual Toyota Mod Classic 150 presented by McDonald’s Results: 1. 51 Justin Bonsignore, 2. 60 Matt Hirschman, 3. 85 Ron Silk, 4. 46 Craig Lutz, 5. 36 Bobby Santos III, 6. 2 Doug Coby, 7. 58 Eric Goodale, 8. 16 Timmy Solomito, 9. 82 Chase Dowling, 10. 54 Tommy Catalano, 11. 64 Rob Summers, 12. 75 Chris Pasteryak, 13. 21 Chuck Hossfeld, 14. 07 Patrick Emerling, 15. 06 Sam Rameau, 16. 77 Gary Putnam, 17. 84 Amy Catalano, 18. 5 Kyle Ebersole, 19. 14 Blake Barney, 20. 32 Tyler Rypkema, 21. 34 JB Fortin, 22. 78 Walter Sutcliffe Jr, 23. 33 Wade Cole, 24. 25 Calvin Carroll, 25. 3 Matt Swanson, 26. 01 Melissa Fifield, 27. 45 Timmy Catalano

Truex Saves Fuel to Earn Watkins Glen Victory

WATKINS GLEN, NY – AUGUST 06: Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Denver Mattress Toyota, celebrates in victory lane after winning the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series I Love NY 355 at The Glen at Watkins Glen International on August 6, 2017 in Watkins Glen, New York. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. – At a track where his father raced, and a track where he was a “garage rat” as a child, Martin Truex Jr. won Sunday’s I Love New York 355 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race by slowing down over the closing laps. 

Truex let Brad Keselowski pass him for the lead on Lap 77 of 90. On instructions from crew chief Cole Pearn, Truex also let Ryan Blaney past his No. 78 Furniture Row Racing Toyota on Lap 83. 

All the while, Truex was saving fuel, with Pearn calculating that both Keselowski and Blaney would have to stop for a splash of gas. The strategy played out as expected, with Keselowski giving up the lead for a trip to pit road on Lap 87 and Blaney following a lap later. 

WATKINS GLEN, NY – AUGUST 06: Brad Keselowski, driver of the #2 Miller Lite Ford, leads a pack of cars during the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series I Love NY 355 at The Glen at Watkins Glen International on August 6, 2017 in Watkins Glen, New York. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

That left Truex to hold off a desperate charge from Matt Kenseth on the final lap, with Truex streaking across the finish line .414 seconds ahead of the No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing Camry. Kenseth’s teammate, Daniel Suarez, rolled home in third to register a career-best result. 

“I’m a little bit lost for words at the moment, just because I’ve been thinking about this one a long time – all weekend, all day,” said Truex, who won for the fourth time this season and the 11th time in his career. 

“Then, at the end there, just it’s so hard there to let guys pass you for the lead. You’ve just got to listen to your crew chief and, luckily for me, I’ve got the best one in the business, and I just believe in him so much, and I just do what he says and it seems to work out.” 

Kenseth, who remains on the playoff bubble with four races left before the 16-driver field is set, was disappointed at coming so close to the victory—one that would have guaranteed him a playoff spot. 

WATKINS GLEN, NY – AUGUST 06: Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Busch Beer Ford, and Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Denver Mattress Toyota, lead a pack of cars during the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series I Love NY 355 at The Glen at Watkins Glen International on August 6, 2017 in Watkins Glen, New York. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

“I’m second happiest,” said Kenseth who was also saving fuel and gunned it on the last lap. “Martin is the happiest. We really needed the win. Honestly, I don’t even think about the playoffs. I more think about coming here for however many, 15, 17, 18 years, whatever it’s been, and not really having a win or an opportunity to win and never even really been that great here. 

“I felt like we had a top-five car. Obviously, we had good fortune there at the end with our track position and our fuel mileage and all that to stay in it and have a shot at it, but man, when it’s that close and you see him saving and you’re saving and then you go after him there on that last lap, it’s disappointing not to get it. Especially when I saw him miss Turn 6, I was like, ‘Man, I’m going to have a shot,’ and he was so fast I still couldn’t get to him getting into (Turn) 7.” 

WATKINS GLEN, NY – AUGUST 06: Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M’s Caramel Toyota, poses for a photo after winning the pole award during qualifying for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series I Love NY 355 at The Glen at Watkins Glen International on August 6, 2017 in Watkins Glen, New York. (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)

Polesitter Kyle Busch led all 20 laps of the race’s first stage, but a snafu on pit road left his left front wheel loose, and Busch had to return under caution during the stage break to correct the problem. That left him deep in the field for the subsequent restart on Lap 25. 

Busch worked his way back into the top 10, but after restarting ninth on Lap 45, his No. 18 Toyota and Keselowski’s No. 2 Ford collided in the bus stop chicane, sending both cars off course. Busch wasn’t a contender for the victory after that, though he did rally to finish seventh. 

Notes: Truex expanded his series lead to 116 points over Kyle Busch, who moved past 23rd-place finisher Kyle Larson for second place. … Truex also increased his playoff point total to 34. Three-time winner Jimmie Johnson is second with 16. … Busch collected his ninth stage win to raise his playoff point total to 14. … The three winless drivers currently in playoff-eligible positions (Chase Elliott, Jamie McMurray and Kenseth) are seventh, eighth and ninth in the standings, respectively, all within an 11-point range.