The Chrome Horn - Champ Trail with Phil Smith

Champ Trail - October 11, 2016

  The Stafford Motor Speedway finally got to swing open their gates for their season ending Fall Final which featured the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Series. A somewhat lean field of 24 cars were on hand for the event. No surprise to anyone Doug Coby set fast time with an 18.607 second lap around the half mile oval earning his ninth Coors Light Pole of 2016. Justin Bonsignore qualified second with a time of 18.651. Bonsignore entered the NWMT 44th Annual NAPA Auto Parts Fall Final just 13 points behind Coby. Third fastest was Ron Silk with Donny Lia fourth and Jimmy Blewett rounding out top five fastest qualifiers.
  After many years of trying, Melissa Fifield finally broke into the top 25 in qualifying. The way things are going with the division she will be in the top 20 by next year. By 4:00pm on Saturday it was all over as rain began to fall.
  Stafford kicked off its final race event of the 2015 season with feature events for its SK Light, Limited Late Model, and DARE Stock divisions, as well as feature events for the TQ Midgets and Mr. Rooter Truck Series as part of the Saturday NAPA Auto Parts Fall Final Weekend festivities. Taking feature wins were Tony Membrino, Jr. in the SK Light feature, Paul Arute in the Ltd. Late Model feature, Johnny Walker in the DARE Stock feature, Joey Bailey in the TQ Midget feature, and Bert Ouellette in the Mr. Rooter Truck Series feature. Membrino and Walker’s feature wins both saw them clinch the track championships and Duane Provost was also crowned a track champion in the Limited Late Model division with a third place finish.
  The Fall Final weekend had to be one of the longest on record as NASCAR, track management, competitors and fans endured adverse weather and got the event in the books. Despite a delay of a week, and nearly seven more hours during a rain-drenched Sunday, Doug Coby reigned supreme with a victory in the NAPA Fall Final 150. Coby rolled to his 10th career victory at the historic half-mile track now trailing only Ted Christopher’s 12 victories and extended his lead in the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour championship standings to 20 points with one race to go. It was Coby’s fourth win in the last five tour races at Stafford. It also marked his fifth overall in 2016, and 22nd of his career.
  Justin Bonsignore entered the race trailing Coby by 13 tallies. The pair started the rain-delayed race 1-2 and traded the lead early, but Bonsignore experienced a broken ignition wire and lost a lap on pit road. He was able to earn the subsequent free pass, and made it back to fourth to salvage a good finish considering the circumstances, but lost seven points on Coby in the process.
  Following Coby across the finish line was Timmy Solomito and Jimmy Blewett. Bonsignore, Chase Dowling, Rowan Pennink, Max Zachem, Matt Swanson, Woody Pitkat and Shawn Solomito rounded out the top 10.
  The event took the green at 9:53pm. There were nine caution periods for 28 laps. The first caution flew on lap 23 for Wade Cole who spun on the front stretch. The second caution flew on lap 29 for Melissa Fifield who was totally out of her element, spinning in turn three. The third caution flew on lap 36 for Donnie Lia and Gary MacDonald who spun in turn 1. At the same time, Fifield spun in turn 3. Justin Bonsignore who was hoping to make up some ground on Coby stalled in turn four with no power, for the . As a gesture of good sportsmanship and good will Jeff Goodale pushed Bonsignore around the track to the entrance of the pit area. Bonsignore lost a lap while his crew made repairs. Bobby Santos brought out the fifth caution when he spunin turn two. Under the rules, Bonsignore was given his lap back in a free pass. Matt Swanson and Ken Heagy spun in turn one on lap55 to bring out the sixth caution. Heagy and Donnie Lia spun on lap 62 for the seventh caution on lap 62. This caution led to a red on lap 63 for the half way break. The eighth caution was displayed when Jimmy Blewett spun in turn three. The ninth and final yellow was displayed when Ron Silk spun in turn three after being tapped by Bonsignore.
  Sixteen of the original 25 starters finished on the lead lap. Bobby Santos completed only 121 laps and finished 18th when he parked it after a severe handling problem. Eric Goodale finished 19th, parking it after 100 laps with a failed fuel pump. After many years of trying Melissa Fifield finally finished in the top 20. Fifield, who was 20 laps down, parked it on lap 100 with an engine problem. Kyle Ellwood lost an engine on lap 79 and ended up 21st. Ken Heagy retired with chassis damage resulting from an accident as did Donny Lia who suffered severe damage to his front suspension. Lia ended up 23rd. Twenty fourth was Gary McDonald who wrecked and last in 25th was Dave Salzarulo. With temps in the high 40's, the checkered flag was waved at 11:15PM.
  The NAPA Fall Final 150 will be telecast on NBCSN, this coming Sunday night, on Oct. 16 at 9:30 p.m. The Whelen Modified Tour will conclude its season and crown a champion in the Sunoco World Series 150 on Oct. 16 at Connecticut’s Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park.
  Going into Thompson for the championship Coby leads Bonsignore by 20 points. Forty three points out of the lead is Timmy Solomito. Max Zachem who has done nothing short of being fabulous is 100 points out of the lead and 52 points out of the third finishing position. Rounding out the top five is Ron Silk, six points behind Zachem and 105 points out of the lead.
  Also taking down feature wins late Sunday were Todd Owen in the SK Modified® feature, Michael Wray in the Late Model feature, and Noah Korner in the Legend cars feature.
  Owen led Christopher, Jr. to the flag for his second win of the 2016 season. Rocco finished third with Reen and Ted Christopher rounding out the top-5.

  In NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified tour action, Ryan Preece made an impressive pass by George Brunnhoelzl III and went on to win the Bad Boy Off Road Southern Slam 150 last Thursday night on the quarter-mile track at Charlotte Motor Speedway for his third win on the southern tour.
  Brunnhoelzl held on to finish second in the race and also pass Seuss for second in the final standings. James Civali finished third in the race with Danny Bohn and Bobby Measmer Jr. completing the top five. Burt Myers was sixth followed by Andy Seuss, Kyle Bonsignore, Jason Myers, and Trey Hutchens III
  While Preece celebrated the win, Burt Myers enjoyed winning his second NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour championship. Myers, also scored his first tour title in 2010 at CMS, won three times on the 2016 schedule and held the lead throughout the season. The Walnut Cove, N.C. driver entered the season finale just needing to take the green flag to celebrate and deny Andy Seuss a third straight crown.
  Bonsignore also secured the Sunoco Rookie of the Year Award competing in every race on the schedule.
  The Bad Boy Off Road Southern Slam 150 will be televised on NBCSN on Friday, Oct. 14 at 3:30 p.m. ET.

  The 14th Annual John Blewett III Memorial North South Shootout in Memory of Charles Kepley returns to Concord Speedway on November 3-5, 2016. The Tour Type Modifieds and Pro All Star Series (PASS) super late models will headline the weekend each with 125-lap features. Other divisions competing over the course of the weekend include: SK Type Modifieds, Limited Late Models, Street Stocks, Mini Stocks, Vintage Modifieds and Vintage Sportsman.

  Fort Mill, SC., October 4, 2016 — The international technology company that makes Continental Tires announced the acquisition of Lakeville, IN-based Hoosier Racing Tire Corp., a manufacturer of specialty tires for racing applications.
  Hoosier was founded in 1957 by Bob Newton and has a legacy of technical product knowledge, quality manufacturing, outstanding service and consistent performance. Hoosier supplies tires for most racing applications throughout the world, with an emphasis on high performance and quality. The company currently employs nearly 500 people.
  Joyce Newton, Hoosier’s president and CEO said, “Continental and Hoosier share a similar vision for continued growth and sales excellence. Hoosier has fantastic brand recognition, a high-performing team, established customer relationships and a great lineup of products. This acquisition will provide a stronger and more sustainable organization for Hoosier moving ahead.”

  Daytona International Speedway experienced moderate damage from Hurricane Matthew with impacts to lights, speakers, signage, fences, gates, awnings and palm trees. Pictures of a past weather event at Daytona International Speedway had been circulating on social media during the storm. Those pictures were from a weather event in 2009. There was no flood damage to the facility from Hurricane Matthew.
  Daytona International Speedway is once again serving as a staging site for Florida Power & Light crews.

  On the speedway stock market scene last week all three speedway stocks were down for the week. Taking the biggest dip was the International Speedway Corporation which dropped 1.97 to 31.45. Speedway Motorsports dropped 0.38 to 17.48 and Dover Entertainment dropped 0.05 to 2.42. NASCAR tire supplier Goodyear showed a modest gain of ).53 to 32.83 while NASCAR fuel supplier Sunoco (Energy Transfer) dropped 1.13 to 35.87 and NASCAR cup sponsor Sprint dropped 0.15 to 6.48. Two of the three car manufacturers showed gains while Toyota dropped 0.17 to 115.89. Ford went up 0.22 to 12.29 and General Motors went up 0.37 to 32.14. In the home improvement sector, Lowes dropped 0.91 to 71.30 and Home Depot dropped 0.37 to 128.31. Most of the big team sponsor's stocks were down at weeks end Target Department stores went up 0.36 to 69.04 while McDonalds dropped 1.91 to 113.45, Coca-Cola dropped 6.69 to 141.47, Aarons Rentals dropped 0.29 to 25.13 and Fedex dropped 1.67 to 173.01.

  On the tube this week:

  Thursday, October 13

6:00 PM, NASCAR America, NBC Sports Net

  Friday, October 14
1:00 PM, NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Kansas practice, NBCSN
2:30 PM, NASCAR Xfinity Series Kansas practice, NBCSN
3:30 PM, NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour Charlotte Motor Speedway, NBCSN
4:30 PM, NXS Kansas final practice, NBCSN
6:00 PM, NSCS Kansas qualifying, NBCSN

  Saturday, October 15
11:00 AM, NSCS Kansas practice, CNBC
12:00 PM, NXS Kansas qualifying, CNBC
12:30 PM, NXS Kansas qualifying resumes, NBCSN
1:00 PM, NASCAR America, NBCSN
1:30 PM, NSCS Kansas final practice, NBCSN
2:30 PM, NXS Countdown, NBCSN
3:30 PM, NXS Kansas race, NBC
7:30 PM, NSCS Kansas final practice re-air, NBCSN
8:30 PM, NSCS Kansas qualifying re-air, NBCSN

  Sunday, October 16
9:00 AM, How It's Made - Liquor Jugs, Deli Meats, NASCAR Engines, NBCSN
11:30 AM, NASCAR RaceDay, FOX Sports 1
1:00 PM, NASCAR America Sunday, NBCSN
1:30 PM, NSCS Countdown, NBC
2:00 PM, NSCS Kansas race, NBC
6:00 PM, NSCS Kansas Post Race Show, NBCSN
6:30 PM, NASCAR Victory Lap, NBCSN
9:30 PM, NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Stafford Fall Final NBCSN

   That’s about it for this week from 11 Gardner Drive, Westerly, and R.I.02891. Ring my chimes at 401-596-5467.

Phil Smith has been a columnist for Speedway Scene and various
other publications for over 3 decades.

Source: Phil Smith / Champ Trail
Posted: October 11, 2016

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