Santos Returns To Victory Lane
Wins Whelen Modified's Thompson 125 With Last-Lap Pass

THOMPSON, Conn. -- It had been long enough since Bobby Santos had been to Victory Lane that he was wondering whether he would ever get back.

It only took one lap Wednesday night at Thompson Speedway Motorsport Park to erase all that.

Santos drove the No. 44 Tinio Corp./Dan Kelley/Curb Records Chevrolet by Max Zachem on the white-flag lap to win the Thompson 125. It was the only lap Santos led on a night where he pitted multiple times early in the event due to a tire issue.

"There was a lot of doubting ourselves," Santos said. "We all know we can win. We won as this team before. We just need a little momentum and we can start winning races again."

Santos hadn't been to Victory Lane since July 12, 2014, at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. It was a 25-race slump for the 2010 tour champion.

Zachem settled for second after coming within one lap of his first career tour win. The 23-year-old from Preston, Connecticut, was making his 23rd career start and led a race-high 43 laps.

Rookie Matt Swanson finished third, followed by Patrick Emerling and Jeff Goodale.

Zachem and Swanson were among a group of drivers who pitted early in the race. Leaders Ryan Preece, Doug Coby, Timmy Solomito and Justin Bonsignore stayed out until a Lap 77 caution. Santos came down with those four, but because he didn't take tires, he was first off pit road and restarted 12th.

From there, Santos was the first one to make it to the front of the field.

Preece, who is running NASCAR XFINITY Series full-time this season, came back to finish sixth. Rowan Pennink, Brendon Bock, Jimmy Blewett and Ken Heagy rounded out the top 10. Coby, who earlier in the day won his fourth Coors Light Pole Award of the season, wound up 11th.

With his finish outside the top 10, Coby saw his points lead cut to 19 over Zachem after five races. Pennink is third, 10 behind Coby but three ahead of Donny Lia and four in front of Justin Bonsignore. Santos moved up to sixth in points, just four behind Bonsignore.

The Thompson 125 will air on NBCSN on Wednesday, June 22 at 5 p.m.

The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour returns to action on Saturday, June 25 at Riverhead (New York) Raceway.

FIN
CAR#
DRIVER
SPONSORS
LAPS
1
44
Bobby Santos
Tinio Corp./Dan Kelley/Curb Records
125
2
20
Max Zachem
LuMacs Package Store/VWS
125
3
89
Matt Swanson*
Spafco Race Chassis/FMR Racing
125
4
07
Patrick Emerling
Buffalo Auto Auction
125
5
46
Jeff Goodale
Riverhead Building Supply
125
6
6
Ryan Preece
TS Haulers/Riverhead Raceway
125
7
3
Rowan Pennink
Cape Cod Copper/Canto Paving
125
8
29
Brendon Bock
Pro System Brakes/L.I. Performance
125
9
4
Jimmy Blewett
Starrett
125
10
2
Doug Coby
Dunleavy's Repair/A&J Romano
125
11
18
Ken Heagy
Buoy One Seafood
125
12
58
Eric Goodale
GAF Roofing/Supreme Skylights
125
13
26
Gary McDonald
Lakeland Landscaping/TRC Electric
125
14
8
Donny Lia
Sypher Construction/Bardahl
125
15
16
Timmy Solomito
Diversified Metals/R.B. Enterprises
125
16
75
Shawn Solomito
Eastport Feeds/Axel Anderson Inc.
124
17
24
Andrew Krause*
Supreme Manufacturiing
124
18
33
Wade Cole
Performance Engines/Kendall Oil
122
19
01
Melissa Fifield
Eastern Propane & Oil
119
20
51
Justin Bonsignore
M3 Technology
111
21
82
Ron Silk
Horton Avenue Materials
110
22
64
Rob Summers
HTE/Dell Elect./Complete Const.
97
23
56
Craig Lutz*
Lutz Mtspts./Morose Competition Eng.
93
24
59
Nick Salva*
Seekonk G.P./Ed Bennett Properties
92
25
9
Chase Dowling
S&S Asphalt Paving/Dunleavy's Repair
61
26
99
Jamie Tomaino
Dunleavy's Repair/Atlantic Sprinkler
35
27
36
David Sapienza
Frankie's Towing/Wine Country
31
28
78
Walter Sutcliffe, Jr.*
Last Minute Racing
14
29
85
Woody Pitkat
Stuart's Autmotive/Dunleavy's
3
June 15th / Jason Christley / NASCAR