James Civali Takes Win At South Boston Speedway

Conn. native takes over Whelen Southern Modified lead

By Tim Southers, NASCAR
April 3, 2010 - 3:55pm

SOUTH BOSTON, Va. – After starting the season winning the pole in Atlanta and finishing third in his most recent NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour race, James Civali felt his first win of the season was just around the corner.

Civali survived a late-race charge by L.W. Miller to win the South Boston 150 Saturday at South Boston Speedway. 

Civali and Miller were out front for most of the race as the pair swapped the lead eight times with Miller getting past Civali for the final time on Lap 144. Civali was able to get back by on Lap 147 and hold on for the win.

Miller finished second, while Andy Seuss recovered from an early-race accident that took him out of the lead to finish third. Thomas Stinson was fourth. Zach Brewer, who won his first Coors Light Pole Award with a track record of 14.765 seconds (97.528 mph), finished fifth.

Civali knew his No. 79 Hill Enterprises/Coors Light Pontiac was a good car throughout practice prior to the race; however he was still nervous at the start.

“We've had some good runs early this season but could never finish it at the end,” Civali said. “We were wearing our tires out by the end of the race and I wanted to make sure we had something left for the end of the race.”

That might have been the game plan entering the South Boston 150 except Civali had to contend with Miller.

The 2007 NWSMT champion hasn't been to victory lane since 2008 and gave Civali all he could handle but said after the race his car just wasn't quite good enough all the way around the track.

“We had a great car,” Miller said. “He (Civali) was able to get a better run off of the corner and I think that made a difference at the end.”

Miller got his No. 36 John Baker Plumbing and Utilities Pontiac past Civali on the final restart of the race after Civali spun his tires taking the final green flag of the race, but the lead didn't last long for Miller.

“I was just spinning my tires on the last couple of restarts,” Civali said. “I really spun them on the final restart and L.W. was able to get by, but we were able to get back up and pass him (for the win).”

It appeared early in the race that Seuss and Tim Brown had good cars as Seuss passed Brown, who started on the front row after the redraw. Seuss, Brown and Civali were all in a tight pack when Civali and Brown made contact which sent Brown into Seuss to bring out the first of seven yellow flags in the event.

“I just got into the back bumper of Tim (Brown) a little bit and it sent him into Seuss,” Civali said. “I hate it for those guys.”

Seuss rebounded for a podium finish and felt he had a good enough car to win. Seuss was back into the top-10 when the third caution of the race occurred after Brandon Hire spun his car.

“We had to use up too much of our car to get back through the field,” Seuss said. “Third place is a good finish.”

Brown also recovered from the early-race accident to finish sixth. John Smith, Burt Myers, Brian King and Brian Loftin completed the top 10.

Miller advanced eight positions in the race to win the Coca-Cola Move of the Race award and Jason Myers rebounded from a tough race at Caraway to finish 12 th giving him the Featherlite Most Improved Driver honors.

David Brigati was the highest finisher of the four rookies in the field to win the Sunoco Rookie of the Race Award while Zach Brewer won his first Coors Light Pole Award driving a modified.

The race will air on SPEED on Thursday, April 29 at 6 p.m. ET.

Civali has four wins on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, where he was the 2006 Sunoco Rookie of the Year. He was making his fifth start on the southern tour and plans to run both full time this season.

Civali took over the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour lead by 18 points over Seuss (505-487) while Brown, who entered the weekend as the points leader, dropped to third at 476. Miller sits fourth with 466 points and Brewer is fifth at 452.

Civali, along with fellow NWSMT competitor Burt Myers will compete at Thompson Speedway next weekend with the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour kicks off with the Ice Breaker 150.

The NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour is off until Friday, July 2 when it races at Caraway Speedway in Asheboro, N.C.

Fin Str Car Driver Team Laps Points B/Points Total Award Status
1 5 79 James Civali Hill Enterprises/Coors Light/LeBleu Water 150 190 10 $2,000 Running
2 10 36 L.W. Miller John Baker Plumbing & Utilities Pontiac 150 175 5 1,800 Running
3 2 47 Andy Seuss Q Racing Oil/Rockingham Boats/MUA Dodge 150 170 5 1,125 Running
4 11 7 Thomas Stinson Cowardin Jewelers Chevrolet 150 160 1,050 Running
5 8 11 Zach Brewer The Berry Hill Resort/McDonald's Chevrolet 150 155 1,100 Running
6 1 83 Tim Brown Hayes Jewelers/Triad Med. Billing Chevrolet 150 150 850 Running
7 3 25 John Smith Tutterrow Surverying/Rick's Home Improvement 150 146 750 Running
8 7 1 Burt Myers Capital Bank/Patterson's Brand Chili Ford 150 142 690 Running
9 13 17 Brian King Adams Towing & Recovery, LLC Chevrolet 150 138 590 Running
10 9 23 Brian Loftin QMF Metal & Electronic Solutions/L&R Trans. 150 134 550 Running
11 12 40 Frank Fleming Jerry Hunt Auto & Truck Center/Lewisville 150 130 525 Running
12 6 4 Jason Myers Wendell Edwards/Moorefield & Trantham Ent. 150 127 800 Running
13 21 98 David Brigati * WPW Grower/Integra Shocks/Oval Speed 150 124 835 Running
14 18 2 Josh Nichols Gershow Recycling/Pen Fair Service Chevrolet 149 121 460 Running
15 4 28 George Brunnhoelzl III Fibrwrap/Oval Speed/PT Ford 149 118 445 Running
16 22 48 Brad Robbins Tri-City Trading Chevrolet 149 115 430 Running
17 19 0 Greg Butcher * Butcher Racing Chevrolet 148 112 420 Running
18 25 77 Gary Putnam * Stock Car Steel Chevrolet 148 109 410 Running
19 24 12 Mike Norman * DMC Auto Exchange/B&G Pie Co. Ford 146 106 400 Running
20 17 31 Gene Pack B&J Builders/Comtech Solutions/Clayton Homes 132 103 390 Accident
21 20 97 Bryan Dauzat OB Builders, Inc. Chevrolet 124 100 380 Running
22 16 8 Jonathan Kievman A Best Forklift Chevrolet 96 97 360 Engine
23 23 15 Darrel Krentz Lucas Oil Pontiac 76 94 340 Accident
24 14 02 Buddy Emory T & C Motorsports Chevrolet 76 94 320 Accident
25 15 44 Brandon Hire Crane & Ripping,Linebach Machinery Chevrolet 64 94 300 Accident

Fastest Qualifier: Zach Brewer, Time: 14.765 Seconds, Speed: 97.528 mph

Time of Race: 1 hrs., 3 mins, 54 secs Average Speed: 56.338 mph Margin of Victory: .752 Seconds

Caution Flags: Laps 7-9 (#83, #7 spin in Turn 2); 26-29 (#77 spins in Turn 4); 52-56 (#44spins in Turn 4); 64-74 (#44 hits frontstretch wall); 77-82 (#31, #15, #12, #02 spin in Turn 3); 133-138 (#0, #31 spin in frontstretch); 140-143 (#2 spins in Turn 2).  7 for 39 laps.

Lap Leaders: Andy Seuss 1-9, James Civali 10-74, L.W. Miller 75, James Civali 76-82, L.W. Miller 83-84, James Civali 85-138, L.W. Miller 139, James Civali 140-143, L.W. Miller 144-146, James Civali 147-150.

Total Laps Led: James Civali 134, Andy Seuss 9, L.W. Miller 7.  9 changes involving 3 drivers.


COCA COLA MOVE OF THE RACE AWARD: L.W. Miller, 36 John Baker Plumbing & Utilities Pontiac

COORS LIGHT POLE AWARD: David Brigati *, 98 WPW Grower/Integra Shocks/Oval Speed Chevrolet

FEATHERLITE MOST IMPROVED DRIVER AWARD: Jason Myers, 4 Wendell Edwards/Moorefield & Trantham Ent. Ford

SUNOCO ROOKIE OF THE RACE AWARD: Zach Brewer, 11 The Berry Hill Resort/McDonald's Chevrolet

* Denotes Sunoco Rookie of the Year Contender



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