FOUR IN A ROW FOR GODOWN IN BRIDGEPORT THRILLER
Bridgeport, NJ – It was Ryan Godown’s fourth win in a row in the Danny’s Pizza Pizzazz Modifieds at the Bridgeport Motorsports Park on a night of racing sponsored by EZ Finance Trucks. It was Godown’s seventh Bridgeport win of the season.
Ryan Godown, Dominick Buffalino and Billy Pauch, Jr. have finished 1-2-3 in the last two Saturday night events and up until two laps to go, it looked at Saturday night’s race might be the third in a row. But Ryan Watt had other ideas. When Buffalino and Pauch were absorbed in their battle for second, they left the inside open. Watt was quick to put the No. 14w into that hole and then succeeded in claiming second on the final lap.
Most of the drivers seemed to echo Godown’s assessment of the racing surface when he declared, “The track was awesome!” “My guys gave me a flawless car tonight,” Godown added.
Howie Finch raced the Ice Less No. 4 to victory in the Precision Hydraulic & Oil Sportsman while Jeff Dirkes earned his second win of the season in the Bridgeport Motorsports Park Street Stocks. Eddie Wagner raced to victory in the Delaware Auto Exchange Mid Atlantic Sprint Series – his second win of the season and his first on the high banks this season.
Ronnie Roberts and Mike Franz raced for the lead as the Modified feature event got underway. Roberts put the No. Z14 out in front as the field raced out of turn two on lap one with Sam Martz taking over second with the Izzy Trucking No. 3. Roberts led the first four laps with Martz taking the lead on lap five.
Dominick Buffalino had the Big Spring Car Wash No. 126 in second on lap seven as Godown raced into third one lap later.
Neal Williams drew the first caution as he slowed on the track and then headed to the pits for a tire change. Martz led the way to the restart but Godown had the lead for lap nine, making quick work of the twelve cars that started in front of the Camp Out No. 26.
Godown led the way over Buffalino and Pauch, Jr. through halfway – a familiar sight on Saturday nights. Ryan Watt raced in fourth with Sam Martz, holding off the challenges of Sammy Martz, Jr. for fifth.
With less than ten laps remaining, the leaders caught the back of the field as lapped traffic loomed ahead. Godown raced through the lapped cars without incident but the traffic enabled Buffalino, Pauch and Watt to close the gap on the leader.
With less than five laps to go, Pauch dove into turn three, looking to the inside for a shot at second but Buffalino prevailed. It looked like another Godown, Buffalino, Pauch finish but then the caution waved with just two laps to go. Jordan Watson got into the wall between turns one and two and needed an assist to get to the pits with a flat tire.
Godown took the green flag with Buffalino and Pauch battling for second and Watt right behind the top three. Coming for the white flag, Buffalino and Pauch were embroiled in the race for second, with both cars sliding up the track in turn four and opening the bottom. Watt saw the opening and quickly slid into position. Watt raced to the inside of Buffalino and Pauch as they headed to the white flag.
Continuing to use the bottom of the track, Watt raced into second as he moved to the top of the track in front of Buffalino and Pauch as they raced through turns one and two. Godown raced to the checkered followed by Watt, Buffalino, Pauch and Martz. Sammy Martz, Jr. finished sixth followed by WB James, Richie Pratt, Jr., HJ Bunting and Mike Mahaney.
F&L Doors heat races were won by Sammy Martz, Jr., Neal Williams and Mike Franz.
Eddie Wagner raced to his first Bridgeport win of the season in the Delaware Auto Exchange Mid Atlantic Sprint Series (MASS) feature after racing first year competitor, Jeff Paulson for the lead.
Buddy Schwiebinz, who came into the race as the MASS point leader, grabbed the lead on the start with Paulson and Dale Eggert trailing the leader. Paulson challenged Schwiebinz and then took the lead following a lap four restart. Wagner moved into second on the same restart.
Paulson led through lap eight but it was Wagner who was out in front one lap later with the Buds R Us No. 70.
Frequent caution flags kept the field tight right down to the final laps.
With five laps to go, Wagner led the way over Paulson, Schweibinz, Aidan Borden and CJ Fasion. Schweibinz made contact with the wall in turns one and two with a tire issue and retired from the race with less than five laps remaining.
With the final caution waved for Schweibinz with four to go, Wagner led the way as Borden charged into second. When the checkered waved, it was Wagner, Borden, Paulson, Faision and Tim Iulg who completed the top five. Bobby DeVault, Cory Hunsberger, Joe Kay, Dan Leaper and Keith Anderson completed the top ten at the checkered.
“I made a ton of changes to the car before the feature,” Wagner explained. “Every race, I found myself racing for whatever position I started in – not going forward or backward. I made so many changes, we were either going to go forward or backward. I even used two shocks that I haven’t used that we had in the trailer!” Obviously, Wagner’s instincts were spot on.
The EZ Finance Trucks heat races were won by Aidan Borden, Larry McVay and Jeff Paulson.
Brian Rogers led the first lap of the Precision Hydraulic & Oil Sportsman feature before Matt Ellery raced the Ellery Pug & Grill No. 29 into the lead.
A caution just before halfway, brought the field back together and erased Ellery’s advantage. Finch, who had been running second, took the lead on the restart after a side-by-side battle with Ellery.
Finch was able to pull away from the field as he raced to his first win of the 2022 season. Ellery finished second followed by Ryan Godown, Jr., Stephen Yankowski and 2021 Rookie Champion, Ethan Bill. David Jenkins finished sixth followed by Tim Tillman, Brian Papiez, Brian Rogers and Brandon Shipley.
Finch credited Jim Ramm with his win. “He’s the reason I’m here. I wouldn’t get to the track if it weren’t for him getting the car ready every week.”
Hoffman Discount Parts heat races were won by Tim Tillman, Matt Ellery and Brandon Watkins.
Jeff Dirkes picked the win in the EZ Truck Finance Street Stock feature in what proved to be a while fifteen laps.
Dirkes grabbed the lead on the start but was quickly challenged by Jeramy Doerr who dogged the leader lap after lap.
Mike Hughes challenged Dirkes for the lead on lap three. Hughes had the No. 18 out in front briefly but Dirkes reclaimed the lead as the two drivers raced down the backstretch.
Hughes, Lee Allen and Tom Wills, Jr. were racing for position as they headed through turns one and two. Hughes got sideway, squeezing Allen against the wall. Allen rode the wall. Wills was left nowhere to go and made hard contact with the two other cars.
It was hard to believe but Allen, who took a wild ride, was able to continue while Hughes and Wills retired to the pits.
Dirkes held off Doerr’s challenges to pick up the win followed by Doerr, current point leader, Lee Allen, Nick Sandone III and Daniel Harrison.
Tom Wills, Jr. picked up the win in the EZ Leasing Trucks heat race.
There will be no racing at the Bridgeport Motorsports Park this week. Racing will return on Saturday, July 23 with the United Racing Club, NEWS Sprints, 4 Cylinders and Vintage Stock Cars. The Modifieds and 602 Sportsman return on Tuesday, July 26th for the Short Track Super Series.
DANNY’S PIZZA PIZZAZZ MODIFIED FEATURE (30 laps):
- Ryan Godown, Sr., 2. Ryan Watt, 3. Dominic Buffalino, 4. Billy Pauch, Jr., 5. Sam Martz, Sr., 6. Sammy Martz, Jr., 7. W.B. James, 8. Richie Pratt, Jr., 9. H.J. Bunting, 10. Mike Mahaney, 11. Davey Sammons, 12. Billy Osmun, III, 13. Tommy Beamer, 14. Roger Manning, 15. Clay Butler, 16. Matt Peck, 17. Mike Franz, 18. Howard O’Neal, 19. Mark VanVorst, 20. Jordan Watson, 21. Rob Roberts, 22. Neal Williams, 23. Brad Roberts, 24. Don Barone, 25. Ryan Krachun
PRECISION HYDRAULIC & OIL 602 SPORTSMAN FEATURE (25 laps):
- Howie Finch, 2. Matt Ellery, 3. Ryan Godown, Jr., 4. Stephen Yankowski, 5. Ethan Bill, 6. David Jenkins, 7. Tim Tillman, 8. Brian Papiez, 9. Brian Rogers, 10. Brandon Shipley, 11. Ricky Wegner, 12. Ryan McKinney, 13. Pete Serra, 14. Ethan Young, 15. Brian Hughes, 16. Luke Bunting, 17. Zac Weller, 18. Greg Reed, 19. Brandon Watkins, 20. Mason Magee, 21. Thomas Prychka, 22. Bobby Watkins
BRIDGEPORT MOTORSPORTS PARK STREET STOCK FEATURE (15 laps):
- Jeff Dirkes, 2. Jeramy Doerr, 3. Lee Allen, 4. Nick Sandone, III, 5. Dan Harrison, 6. Terry Chaney, 7. Ken Moren, 8. Lee Taylor, 9. Mike Hughes, 10. Tom Wills, Jr., DNS – Mike Creamer, Jeff Behl
DELAWARE AUTO EXCHANGE MID-ATLANTIC SPRINT SERIES FEATURE (25 laps): 1. Eddie Wagner, 2. Aidan Borden, 3. Jeff Paulson, 4. C.J. Faison, 5. Tim Iulg, 6. Bobby DeVault, 7. Cory Hunsberger, 8. Joe Kay, 9. Dan Leaper, 10. Keith Anderson, 11. Josh Bricker, 12. Darren Cox, 13. D.J. Tanner, Jr., 15. Kenny Laureno, 16. Andy Mahan, 17. Buddy Schweibinz, 18. Dave Brown, 19. Rick Stief, 20. Larry McVay, 21. Dale Eggert, 22. Cory Cornell, 23. Rory Janney, 24. Dave Graber, 25. Samantha Lieberman