Modified Four Score for Newman
July 16, 2011 | 2:30 P.M. EST
Newman led 61 of the 100 laps. (Photo: Getty Images)
Ryan Newman capitalized on a relatively caution-free race to sail to his fourth straight NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour race Saturday in the F.W. Webb 100 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Newman, who will also won the Coors Light Pole Award for Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at the 1.058-mile oval, led a race-high 61 laps. He passed Ron Silk on Lap 84 and won by 1.901 seconds over runner-up Todd Szegedy.
The race was slowed by just two cautions and featured an 88-lap green-flag run to the checkered flag. Newman led the first 33 laps and drifted back to third under the long run before moving back to the front in the closing stages.
“We didn’t really know what to expect of the race and how it was going to unfold, we typically have multiple cautions here,” Newman said. “We were way loose, but it turns out we were the tightest off the loose guys and that was all it took to be able to get past those two cars.”
In addition to three consecutive wins at New Hampshire, he also won at Bristol Motor Speedway last year -- all for crew chief Kevin Manion. Manion, from Boylston, Mass., is the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series crew chief for Jamie McMurray.
Szegedy edged Silk at the finish line for second. Matt Hirschman and Doug Coby rounded out the top five.
“Second, to me, was kind of a win. We beat all of the regulars,” Szegedy said. “We’ve had some bad luck here for probably the last four or five races, so it was definitely a good run.”
Silk was running second at the white flag and made one last attempt to close in on Newman, but it ended up costing him a position at the finish.
“I got a little bit close to Newman there on the last lap, Eric Beers gave me a tow to get me within range of him,” Silk said. “I really tried to sail it down into [Turn] 1 there and I just got up in the loose stuff, and once you get up in there you can’t get out. That’s how Todd was able to get me on the last lap, but it was a good day.”
Points leader Rowan Pennink was sixth, followed by Eric Goodale, Ron Yuhas Jr., Ed Flemke Jr. and Woody Pitkat.
Silk’s fifth-straight top-five finish shaved 20 points off of Pennink’s lead in the season standings, which is now down to just 10. Christopher is third, 53 tallies back.
The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour will go from the largest track on the schedule to the smallest when it races next in the Lighthouse Mission 200 at the quarter-mile Riverhead (N.Y.) Raceway on Saturday, July 30.