Auto Racing: Fortin win may not be enough to catch Bonsignore

08/22/2011 4:08 PM |

John Fortin of Holtsville, a three-time Riverhead Raceway NASCAR Modified champion, had the kind of night he needed in the Whelen All-American Series championship chase on Saturday. Fortin scored his 25th career win in a 35-lap contest. In doing so, he trimmed Justin Bonsignore’s division-leading points advantage to 22 points over Fortin with three races left.

Fortin noted that even though he had a good points night, he still has a difficult task ahead of him. “It’s going to be tough with just three races to go,” he said. “I have to hand it to Justin and his group. They’ve been running good all year while we just seemed to struggle more than we’d like, but my team never stopped working trying to get us right again. It is what it is.”

Tom Rogers Jr., after making a switch of cars, was second. John Beatty Jr of Merrick came in third, Chris Young of Calverton was fourth and Bill Park of Manorville fifth.

Roger Maynor went nearly two years without a win before taking a victory two weeks ago. The Bay Shore driver assured himself that wasn’t going to happen again as he scored his second straight Figure Eight win in a 15-lap race. It was Maynor’s 103rd career win.

Arne Pedersen of Mastic Beach scored a small victory of his own with a runner-up showing. Pedersen leads Maynor by 12 points atop the division with two races left. Tom Ferrara of Holbrook was third in the race.

The first half might not have gone quite the way three-time defending Charger champion Chris Turbush of Riverhead might have liked, but the second half was the polar opposite as he drove to his fourth win of the year and 29th of his career in a 20-lap affair. Turbush holds a four-point lead atop the division over Chris McGuire of Shirley. McGuire was second in the race, with Dan Turbush of Riverhead claiming third.

Lou Maestri of Deer Park drove to his first Super Pro Truck win of 2011 after an intense battle for the win with Erin Dumicich, who was trying to become the first female driver to win in the class and first at the track since Laurie Harlin won a Blunderbust race in 1998. When 20 laps were completed, though, Maestri was the victor for the 21st time in his career, leaving him one behind Danny Grennan on the all-time win list. Dave Koenig reclaimed the division points lead with his second-place finish. He leads Maestri by six points with three race to go in the division chase. Chris Turbush was third.

Chris Young of Calverton took a giant step forward in the chase for the 2011 Legend Race Car championship when he won his fifth main event of the year in what can be termed a career year for him. Young was able to hold off his championship rival, Justin Strumpf of Selden, in the 20-lap race. Strumpf, who started the race back in 18th, peddled his way to second. Kyle Soper of Manorville wheeled his car from 23rd to third. With one race left on Sept. 10, Strumpf trails Young by 14 points.

The Four-Cylinder Demolition Derby competitors waged another spirited battle and in the end it was Jason Savoy of Lake Panamoka scoring the victory. James Kilkenny of Howard Beach leads Savoy in the season-long points race, 430 to 360, with two events left.