Riverhead Raceway: Preece outduels rival for Modified triumph

COURTESY PHOTO | Ryan Preece, left, with car owner Bill Park, drove to his second career win at Riverhead Raceway on Saturday night.


Ryan Preece of Berlin, Conn., outdueled Ted Christopher of Plainville, Conn., to win the 35-lap NASCAR Modified feature Saturday night at Riverhead Raceway. The win was Preece’s second career victory at the quarter-mile oval, with his first coming in a NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour race on Aug. 1, 2009.

Right from the initial green flag, the race was on between the duo who race each other three times a weekend in the NASCAR Whelen All American Series. The two rivals went toe to toe during several double-file restarts in the first portion of the race.

“Teddy ran me really clean, and I thank him for that, and if the roles are reversed next week or down the road I’ll do the same for him,” said who also won last Thursday night in a NASCAR Whelen All-American Series event at the Thompson, Conn., Speedway.

Christopher was second. Eddie Brunnhoelzl III of Levittown turned in a third-place outing. John Beatty Jr. of Merrick and former five-time Riverhead Raceway champion Don Howe of Water Mill completed the top five.

In other races:

Chris LaSpisa of Shirley scored his sixth career Late Model victory when he won a 25-lap main event, leading all the way in the process. Roger Oxee of Peconic, the all-time leading Late Model winner, was second, with Shawn Patrick of Brightwaters third for the second week in a row. “It’s basically myself along with teammate Arne Pedersen and my father doing this all on our own with no financial backing, so indeed it’s sweet to hold off Roger for this win,” said LaSpisa.

Chris Turbush of Riverhead moved into sole possession of second on the all-time Charger win list as he fought off some heavy late-race pressure from Jeremy McDermott to win his 31st career feature event. The win broke a tie between him and current NASCAR official Robin Vollmoeller for second on the all-time win list, which is headed up by Turbush’s father, Dan, at 52.

Jeremy McDermott of East Stroudsburg, Penn., was second across the line while Brian Doyle of Ronkonkoma placed third.

Brendon Bock of Franklin Square was the winner of the Legend Race Car feature. The first career victory for the 15-year-old, second-generation driver did not come easily. Bock’s father, former NASCAR Modified driver George Bock, who operates a business in China, flew 13 hours to watch his son take the win. Tom Sherman was second, and Kyle Ellwood of Riverhead was third.

Greg Zaleski of Jamesport, a physical education teacher, took the Grand Enduro field to school as he won a 50-lap feature. James Charrier of Shirley, who was seeking his third straight win in the class, made a last-lap pass of his brother-in-law, Bob Engelfried of Stony Brook, for second.