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Auto Racing: Triple duty and victory for Calverton driver

08/13/2017 11:01 AM |

Versatile Dave Brigati of Calverton pulled triple duty once again Saturday at Riverhead Raceway and in the process drove to his 10th career NASCAR Modified victory in a 40-lap main event. Prior to his win, Brigati placed fifth in a 30-lap Super Pro Truck event and runner-up in a 25-lap Modified Crate race with a large crowd looking on.

Just as the checkers waved on the NASCAR Modified field, a light rain began to fall, as predicted by local forecasters.

The win gave Brigati a moment to reflect on the loss of his father during the offseason. “He’d love this right now,” Brigati said, chocking back tears. “He got me into this game … I owe it all to him.”

John Fortin Jr. of Holtsville was the runner-up, with teenage sensation Dillon Steuer of Bohemia third, Eddie Brunnhoelzl III of Levittown fourth and Kyle Soper of Manorville fifth.

In just his third Modified Crate start, Jack Orlando of Calverton won his first career race in the class and 32nd overall at the track. Orlando is the author of 24 Charger and seven Late Model wins at the track. Dylan Slepian of Dix Hills crossed the line second and C.J. Lehmann of Center Moriches was third.

Tom Rogers Jr. of Riverhead was the winner of a 15-lap Figure Eight main event, his 31st career triumph leaving him one behind George Brown for third on the all-time win list. Rogers took down his fifth win in seven starts as the rain intensified. Tom Ferrara of Patchogue made his way to second place. Scott Pedersen of Shirley was third.

With a return to classes at St. John’s University looming, Jack Handley Jr. of Medford hit the racing books Saturday night, winning a 30-lap Super Pro Truck race. Following Handley and the second-place Brigati was Lou Maestri of Deer Park.

A 20-lap Legend Race Car feature saw young Jeff Otto Jr. of Deer Park take home a victory. Defending champion Vinny Delaney of Holtsville was second and Bryan Kelly of Aquebogue was third.

In a hard-hitting Demolition Derby for eight-cylinder cars run in the rain, Frank Phillips of Ozone Park made a triumphant return to the class.

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