THOMPSON, Conn. (April 11, 2010) – Bobby Santos completed a dominating weekend in his first race with his new team.
Santos was fastest in practice, won the Coors Light Pole Award with a track record, and then led the most laps in the 150-lap Icebreaker to kick off the 2010 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour season at Thompson International Speedway.
“We had a great race right from the beginning,” Santos said. “Right out of the box the car was good, and the guys gave me an awesome pit stop.”
Santos, from Franklin, Mass., led the first 60 laps of the season-opener from the pole and pitted along with the race leaders under caution on Lap 61. Ted Christopher, the defending winner of the Icebreaker, was the only car of the lead-lap group that stayed out, and he assumed the lead. Christopher, Mike Stefanik and Ryan Preece held the lead before Santos regained it on Lap 120 and drove to his second career Whelen Modified Tour victory.
“After the pit stop it got a little tough,” Santos said. “Those guys were racing hard for the lead. It was just a lot of fun racing with Mike Stefanik, Ted Christopher and Ryan Preece. We had an awesome shootout for the win, and I couldn't be happier to beat them.”
In the offseason, Santos took over the ride in the No. 4 "Mystic Missile" Dodge after 2009 champion Donny Lia departed for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. Santos had run part-time on the Tour since 2004, with 29 previous starts and one win - at Thompson in the fall of 2007.
Santos' winning effort on Sunday was preceded by a stellar performance on Saturday as the 24-year-old broke Eric Beers' previous track qualifying record. In the 110 all-time Whelen Modified Tour races at Thompson, his lap of 18.418 seconds (122.163 mph) now stands as the fastest on record.
Preece led 18 laps in the race and finished second. The 19-year-old from Berlin, Conn., has finished in the top four in three of his last four starts at Thompson, but is still looking for his first win at the .625-mile speedway.
“We had a real good car,” Preece said. “We had to start 10th and work our way up, but my crew gives me a great car everywhere I go, and this is one of the best cars I've ever had at Thompson. I'm really happy to start off the 2010 season on a good note.”
Santos and Preece were followed by Stefanik, Christopher and Todd Szegedy in the top five. Stefanik and Christopher led 32 and nine laps, respectively. In addition to winning last year's Icebreaker, Christopher was also winner of the 2009 season finale at Thompson, and he has led laps in the Tour's last eight races at the track.
Rowan Pennink, Chris Pastyerak, Ron Silk, Eric Goodale and Eric Beers rounded out the top 10.
NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour standout Burt Myers finished 14th in his debut at Thompson and last year's Southern Tour champion, George Brunnhoelzl III, was 16th in the first race since his move to the northern circuit.
Santos took home the Whelen Winner of the Race Award and earned the Featherlite Most Improved Driver Award based on his improvement from the last race of 2009. Woody Pitkat's 12th-place finish earned the Coca-Cola Move of the Race Award and Richie Pallai Jr. was the Sunoco Rookie of the Race Award winner.
The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour will next race in the Tech-Net Spring Sizzler presented by CARQUEST at Stafford (Conn.) Motor Speedway on Sunday, April 25. For ticket information, please visit Stafford's official Web site (www.staffordmotorspeedway.com).
For more information, contact:
Jason Cunningham, NASCAR Public Relations, (704) 201-6658 or jcunningham @nascar.com
|1||1||4||Bobby Santos||"Mystic Missile" Dodge||150||190||10||$8,800||Running|
|2||6||3||Ryan Preece||Mizzy Const./Reynold's Auto Wrecking Chevrolet||150||175||5||3,400||Running|
|3||4||16||Mike Stefanik||Diversified Metals/R.B. Enterprises Pontiac||150||170||5||2,850||Running|
|4||8||36||Ted Christopher||Al-Lee Installations Chevrolet||150||165||5||2,575||Running|
|5||11||2||Todd Szegedy||Wisk/Snuggle Ford||150||155||2,275||Running|
|6||9||93||Rowan Pennink||Monk Mechanics Hand Cleaner Chevrolet||150||150||2,075||Running|
|7||2||52||Chris Pasteryak||Dawley's Auto Center/Sunoco Chevrolet||150||146||1,975||Running|
|8||3||6||Ron Silk||T.S. Haulers Chevrolet||150||142||1,875||Running|
|9||22||58||Eric Goodale||Perimeters for the Home Chevrolet||150||138||1,825||Running|
|10||21||76||Eric Beers||John Blewett Inc./Ling Trucking Chevrolet||150||134||1,175||Running|
|11||10||54||Eric Berndt||North End Auto Parts Chevrolet||150||130||1,550||Running|
|12||30||28||Woody Pitkat||Ramar-Hall Chevrolet||150||127||2,395||Running|
|13||18||90||Renee Dupuis||Union Insurance Group/SFI Chevrolet||150||124||1,535||Running|
|14||5||7||Burt Myers||Capital Bank/Patterson's Brand Ford||150||121||1,130||Running|
|15||15||14||Jimmy Blewett||Ling Trucking/Atlantic Sprinkler Chevrolet||150||118||1,465||Running|
|16||13||46||George Brunnhoelzl, III||Cape Cod Aggregates/J&R Pre-Cast Chevrolet||150||115||1,850||Running|
|17||17||71||Rob Fuller||Draco Spring Ford||150||112||1,030||Running|
|18||36||5||Joe Hartmann||Charlie's Quality Collision Chevrolet||149||109||975||Running|
|19||29||98||Erick Rudolph||Mohawk N.E./Original Pizza Logs Chevrolet||149||106||950||Running|
|20||25||8||Glenn Tyler||Sypher Construction Chevrolet||149||103||1,325||Running|
|21||28||39||Richie Pallai, Jr. *||Bosch Spark Plugs Chevrolet||149||100||900||Running|
|22||34||33||Wade Cole||Perf. Engines/Kendall Oil/Ryan's Oil Chevrolet||147||97||1,250||Running|
|23||32||68||Johnny Bush||J.B. Stone Setters Chevrolet||147||94||1,225||Running|
|24||37||15||Danny Knoll, Jr.||Chuck E. Cheese Chevrolet||146||91||800||Running|
|25||35||26||Gary McDonald||Lakeland Landscape/TRC Electric Pontiac||142||88||1,190||Running|
|26||16||10||Ed Flemke, Jr.||Ron Bouchard's Auto Stores Chevrolet||124||85||1,180||Running|
|27||27||51||Justin Bonsignore *||M3 Technology Chevrolet||110||82||770||Running|
|28||23||1||Rob Summers||Frasco Fuel Oil Chevrolet||100||79||760||Accident|
|29||12||79||James Civali||Hill Enterprises/Coors Light Pontiac||96||76||1,150||Accident|
|30||14||91||Richard Savary||Alloy Wheel Repair/Wizz Kids Chevrolet||66||73||750||Overheating|
|31||19||50||Kevin Goodale||Riverhead Building Supply Chevrolet||61||70||1,150||Suspension|
|32||31||38||Jake Marosz||Perf. Engines/Kendall Oil/Ryan's Oil Chevrolet||58||67||1,150||Suspension|
|33||24||59||Chuck Hossfeld||Ed Bennett Properties Chevrolet||56||64||1,150||Accident|
|34||20||99||Jamie Tomaino||Supreme Manufacturing Chevrolet||54||61||1,150||Engine|
|35||33||18||Ken Heagy||Buoy One Seafood Chevrolet||37||58||1,150||Engine|
|36||26||70||Andy Seuss||Stuart's Auto/Rockingham Boats Chevrolet||11||55||750||Overheating|
|37||7||0||Doug Coby||Cliff Nelson/Earle's Asphalt Chevrolet||2||52||750||Clutch|
Fastest Qualifier: Bobby Santos, Time: 18.418 Seconds, Speed: 122.163 mph
Time of Race: 1 hrs., 6 mins, 59 secs Average Speed: 83.976 mph Margin of Victory: .266 Seconds
Caution Flags: Laps 59-63 (Cars #59 and #38 spin backstretch); 67-69 (Car #98 spin Turn 2); 87-89 (Debris in Turn 3); 91-94 (Cars #90 and #39 spin Turn 2); 97-100 (Car #79 into Turn 2 wall); 103-106 (Cars #26 and #6 spin Turn 2); 117-119 (Car #8 spin Turn 4). 7 for 26 laps.
Lap Leaders: Bobby Santos 1-60, Ted Christopher 61-69, Mike Stefanik 70-101, Ryan Preece 102-119, Bobby Santos 120-150.
Total Laps Led: Bobby Santos 91, Mike Stefanik 32, Ryan Preece 18, Ted Christopher 9. 4 changes involving 4 drivers.
COCA-COLA MOVE OF THE RACE AWARD: Woody Pitkat, 28 Ramar-Hall Chevrolet
COORS LIGHT POLE AWARD: Bobby Santos, 4 "Mystic Missile" Dodge
FEATHERLITE MOST IMPROVED DRIVER AWARD: Bobby Santos, 4 "Mystic Missile" Dodge
SUNOCO ROOKIE OF THE RACE AWARD: George Brunnhoelzl, III *, 46 Cape Cod Aggregates/J&R Pre-Cast Chevrolet
WHELEN WINNER OF THE RACE AWARD: Bobby Santos, 4 "Mystic Missile" Dodge