Twice in the previous four years, Justin Bonsignore won the season finale at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park, and had his Victory Lane celebration cut short when he had to move out of the way for the crowning of the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour champion.
Sunday, they made way for Bonsignore.
The 32-year-old from Holtsville, New York, waited for Sunoco World Series 150 winner Craig Lutz to wrap up before celebrating his second tour championship in three years.
Bonsignore finished fourth behind Lutz, Jon McKennedy and Ron Silk.
“Just an unbelievable season,” Bonsignore said. “I can’t thank my entire team enough. … [Crew chief] Ryan Stone brings unbelievable cars every week. Pit crew is on point every week.”
It was his ninth top-five finish in nine races in the abbreviated season that included three victories. It also marked Bonsignore’s 15th straight top five.
He entered the final weekend needing to finish 2rd to clinch the title. But after winning three of the last four races at Thompson, but watching Doug Coby crowned the champion at the end of the night — including last year’s bittersweet race win — Bonsignore looked to take both the race AND the championship.
He led 14 laps and stayed in the top five nearly the entire race, even after it was mathematically wrapped up.
Bonsingore won the title in 2018 and finished eight points behind Coby last year. He’s finished in the top three in points in six of the last seven seasons.
“I took a hit today,” Bonsignore said in reference to his 2.7 average finish in nine races this year. “That’s awesome. I know it’s just nine races, but to have that through nine races is impressive. … Completed every lap. It’s just, people are going to say what they want about a shortened season, but when you go out and run top-five every race and you lead laps like we did in almost every race, it justifies it in whatever terms you want to justify. Everybody had the same opportunity to go out and do what we did and fortunately enough my team we were just able to execute week in and week out and it got us here.”
Coby won the Mayhew Tools Pole Award Saturday but had his race cut short by a Lap 97 accident and finished 22nd.
Justin’s cousin, Kyle Bonsignore, finished fifth.
Sam Rameau was sixth, followed by Woody Pitkat, Calvin Carroll, Patrick Emerling and Tyler Rypkema.
Rypkema collected his fifth top 10 of the season and the 23-year-old from Oswego, New York, earned the Sunoco Rookie the Year Award.
McKennedy led a race-high 51 laps and edged Coby by five for second place — 40 back of Bonsignore.
- Craig Lutz
- Jon McKennedy
- Ron Silk
- Justin Bonsignore
- Kyle Bonsignore
- Sam Rameau
- Woody Pitkat
- Calvin Carroll
- Patrick Emerling
- Tyler Rypkema *
- Matt Swanson
- Anthony Nocella
- Chris Pasteryak
- Rob Summers
- Walter Sutcliffe, Jr.
- Ken Heagy
- Ronnie Williams
- Gary Byington *
- Dave Sapienza
- Melissa Fifield
- Cory Osland *
- Doug Coby
- Tommy Catalano
- Andy Jankowiak
- Chuck Hossfeld
- Timmy Solomito
- Eric Goodale