April 9th, 2018
Matt Swanson Kicks Off Whelen Modified Tour Season With Fifth At Icebreaker 150 At Thompson
A www.racedayct.com article
THOMPSON – With a part-time schedule planned for 2018, Matt Swanson kicked off his 2018 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour campaign Sunday in a positive way with a fifth place finish in the Icebreaker 150 at Thompson Speedway.
Swanson skipped the season opening Whelen Modified Tour event at Myrtle Beach (S.C.) Speedway on March 17.
Picking his way through the field, Swanson took the green flag 21st, survived the melee of cautions, pitted just prior to the halfway mark before getting through some late race aggressive action to finish fifth.
“Missing the first race I wasn’t really sure what to expect here at Thompson but this Starrett Tools Ford was very good today,” Swanson said. “All the guys at SPAFCO, my father, my brothers, all the crew guys, prepared me a great race car and I was glad to prove it for them.”
“You always expect a little contact at the end of a Tour race here, today, there was a little extra contact. We were able to keep all four wheels on it, we’re rolling it through tech and we’re putting it in the trailer.”
Swanson used an early pit stop for adjustments and one tire that paid dividends.
“We felt we could gain putting a new tire on,” Swanson said. “We pitted early with a couple other cars. We had a back up plan if the cautions didn’t fall the right way, but they did. We were able to come in, put three tires on and the car held it self the rest of the race. It handled as well at the end of the race as it did when we bolted on three tires.”
Swanson’s team returns to action with the series in the NAPA Spring Sizzler April 29 at Stafford Motor Speedway.
April 8th, 2018
Bonsignore Wins At Thompson
Matt Swanson Finishes 5th In 2018 Tour Debut
BY KYLE SOUZA HOMETRACKS.NASCAR.COM w/ Matt Swanson Racing headline
THOMPSON, Conn. — Even though he finished third in the championship standings last year, Justin Bonsignore struggled for much of the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour season.
As a result, over the latest offseason, his Kenneth Massa Motorsports team decided they needed to make a change. The team switched to LFR Chassis and brought Ryan Stone on board as crew chief, in what Bonsignore called a complete “reboot.”
Sunday, in the 44th annual Icebreaker at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park, Bonsignore took his new combination to the winner’s circle in just their second effort as a team. The victory was the 13th of his Whelen Modified Tour career, and his sixth on the .625-mile high-banked oval, making him the active leader in victories at the track.
“It was tough,” Bonsignore said of his struggles throughout last year. “The 2017 season humbled me a lot as a person, as a race car driver, it was just a really tough season. To come back and have a really good car at Myrtle Beach, and come here and have luck go our way today and get a win, it’s a really good feeling.”
Even though he carried the checkered flag, his return didn’t come without an array of close calls. On Lap 1, Bonsignore locked the brakes up going into Turn 3, and nearly made contact with defending race winner Rowan Pennink. In the final laps, the Holtsville, New York, driver found himself chasing Jon McKennedy looking to capture Thompson magic once again.
Coming down for a restart with five laps to go, McKennedy’s No. 7 Accell Construction Chevrolet ran out of fuel in Turn 3. Bonsignore inherited the lead for the final restart, but had to hold off a furious charge by Ronnie Williams on a green-white-checkered finish. Williams, who won his first career pole earlier in the day, was involved in a last-lap wreck, while Bonsignore went around and captured the checkered flag.
“We had a really good car,” Bonsignore said. “I’ll take the luck any day of the week. I knew Ronnie was going to be anxious. We have all been there, looking for our first win. I got a good launch on the restart. I really just love winning at Thompson.”
Craig Lutz put together an impressive final stint of the race to charge through the field and finish second, while Pennink, in his first race back since offseason back surgery, finished third.
Ryan Preece and Matt Swanson completed the top five.
Doug Coby rebounded from two wrecks and finished sixth, followed by Rob Summers, Chase Dowling, Bobby Santos and Timmy Solomito. Williams ended up 19th and McKennedy 20th.
The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour returns to the track for the NAPA Spring Sizzler at Stafford Motor Speedway on Sunday, April 29
July 3rd, 2017
MacDonald Scores At The ‘Magic Mile’
Matt Swanson Battles With Two Of New England’s Most Successful Late Model Drivers, Finishes 3rd In His Starrett Tools Machine
A www.gspss.net release
WALPOLE, N.H. – Heading into Saturday’s First Annual New England Short Track Showdown presented by AR Bodies at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Eddie MacDonald was listed as one of the favorites to capture the checkered flag.
Behind the wheel of his No. 17, MacDonald showed why he was one of the favorites. He scored the victory in his heat race and then went on and scored the win in the 50-lap feature event as part of the inaugural stop for the series on the 1.058-mile oval. DJ Shaw and Matt Swanson joined MacDonald as podium finishers.
Although MacDonald got out front early and seemed to be the race dominator, he faded just before the halfway point and Shaw was able to slide by and take the lead at lap 19. MacDonald mentioned post-race that he had a right-rear tire blistering and also had the deck lid of the car come off while on the track which slowed his efforts.
However, during a halfway break with 22 laps to go, MacDonald’s team went to work and fixed the body and gave him two new right side tires to attempt to work his way back to the front. On the restart, MacDonald slid to the inside of Shaw and took over the advantage, pulling away into glory and capturing another NHMS victory.
Going into Saturday’s main event, MacDonald had already won races on the ‘Magic Mile’ in multiple different touring series and he was able to use the experience to his advantage and capture the inaugural Granite State Pro Stock Series stop at NHMS.
Shaw finished second behind the wheel of his No. 90, just a little bit short of capturing the checkered flag. Shaw’s team car, driven by NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour driver Matt Swanson, finished in third and rounded out the podium finishers.
Mike O’Sullivan finished in fourth, while brother Tommy O’Sullivan rounded out the top five at the finish. Six through 10 were Nick Lascuola, Mike Scorzelli, Barry Gray, Josh King and Wyatt Alexander.
Early cautions plagued the race, including an incident on the backstretch that took out Travis Fisher and Kevin Casper. Shortly after, a major crash in turn one started when Scott MacMichael blew a motor in front of the field. Ben Rowe, Derek Griffith and Billy Brady, along with others, were involved and the crash ended their day as well.
The series wishes to thank all of the teams, drivers, fans and supporters of the First Annual New England Short Track Showdown presented by AR Bodies.
Next up for the Granite State Pro Stock Series is the second of two stops at the Lee USA Speedway in Lee, New Hampshire. The event will be held on Friday, July 7, with a post time of 7 p.m.
For more information on the Granite State Pro Stock Series, fans are encouraged to visit www.gspss.net, or follow the series on Twitter and Facebook for updates.
1. 17ma Eddie MacDaonald
2. 90 D.J. Shaw
3. 49 Matt Swanson
4. 08 Mike O’Sullivan
5. 4 Tommy O’Syullivan
6. 39 Nick Lascuola
7. 18 Mike Scorzelli
8. 29 Barry Gray
9. 21 Josh King
10. 96 Wyatt Alexander
11. 01 Joe Decker
12. 17 Heywood Herriot
13. 28ma Greg Nanigian
14. 7 Cory Casagrande
15. 51 Eddie Fatsher
16. 57 Zig Geno
17. 72 Scott MacMichael
18. 12 Derek Griffith
19. 12j Joe Graff
20. 4r Ben Rowe
21. 05 Phil Richardson
22. 43 Devin O’Connell
23. 92 Billy Brady
24. 76 Zane Zeiner
25. 8f Travis Fisher
26. 88 Kevin Casper
January 23rd, 2017
Starrett Announces 2017 Sponsorship Program
Athol, MA – The L.S. Starrett Co. announced today that it will expand its motorsports marketing program by continuing support of the newly combined NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour. Under the banner of Starrett Racing, the company will be the primary sponsor of the Flamingo Motorsports #16 with driver Timmy Solomito. In addition to sponsoring the 16 car, Starrett Racing will also support the future of the sport through a driver development program as the primary sponsor of the Matt Swanson Racing #89 and driver Matt Swanson. “Starrett is very pleased to expand our racing program in 2017 to include two high-quality teams. Flamingo Motorsports is a proven, championship and race winning team that fought in the 2016 points battle to the end. Matt Swanson is a really great young driver that has won championships and who is progressing quickly through the racing ranks and was the Rookie of the Year in 2016. At Starrett, we believe in striving for excellence and continuous improvement. We see these two relationships as meeting those goals and we expect to be winning races and championships now and well into the future. We are really looking forward to having Timmy, Matt and their teams represent our company,” explained Jim Taylor, Starrett’s VP of Operations.
“We are thrilled to have Starrett on board as our primary sponsor, “said Eric Sanderson of Flamingo Motorsports. “ We have the right cars, the right driver, the right crew chief, and now we have the right sponsor. This is going to be a great year of racing and we are going to do everything necessary to win the championship.” Flamingo last won the NWMT championship in 2013 with driver Ryan Preece and also won with Mike Stefanik in 2006. It’s a bit of a stretch, but Stefanik also plays into the history of the 89 team, having won championships in 2001 and 2002 driving for Art Barry. Ken Barry is the crew chief on the 89 and has been a big part of bringing Swanson along in his development. “By the end of the season we were consistently running in the top ten and pushing the top five. Finishing 4th at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway last September was a big achievement for such a young driver. Winning Rookie of the Year and finishing 9th in the points were really feathers in Matt’s cap,” Ken said.
It may be the “off-season”, but preparations are well underway for 2017. Timmy Solomito is looking forward to racing speedweeks at New Smyrna and having his first indoor TQ experience at Atlantic City later this month. “It’s been great to spend more time with family, but we have been really busy getting the cars ready for the season. I’m ready to strap in and excited to get to racing for this championship. We have the full package and showed that we can win races last year. With Starrett on board we are looking forward to taking it to the next level this season.”
Matt Swanson is looking forward to the season for a lot of reasons. “We made a lot of progress last year and it really helped getting to go to the tracks for the second time. Most of the tracks we ran I had never turned a lap on. By the end of the season I was feeling comfortable and was able to give Ken better feedback on the cars. We should be able to consistently run well this year. I’m really grateful for Starrett’s support and look forward to representing them. Starrett tools are the best measuring tools on the market and we use them to build our cars. They are made in America, right here in Massachusetts, and I’m proud to have them on our race car.”
Starrett sponsored the Bob Garbarino owned Mystic Missile and driver Jimmy Blewett throughout the 2016 campaign. The #V4 finished 4th in the owners championship and won the Stafford 150 in August. “We really appreciated getting introduced to this series by Bob and his team. We were thrilled to win a race and to have our company represented by such professional and experienced people as the Mystic Missile team. We loved working with Jimmy and living the excitement that ‘Showtime’ brings to every race. Jimmy is going to be devoting more time to his family this season and to getting his nephew, John Blewett, started in his modified career. He plans to run select Tour races and we hope to help him in that endeavor. We admire and support his decision to focus on his family,” said BJ Guerin, Motorsports and Education Specialist at Starrett.
You can find more information at www.starrett.com, www.flamingomotorsports.com, www.mattswansonracing.com, or follow on Facebook or Twitter @starretttools, @TheNatural99, and @MSwanson40