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NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour

Justin Bonsignore goes back-to-back in NWMT at New Hampshire

It’s actually his third overall win at the Magic Mile

A dream weekend for Justin Bonsignore at New Hampshire Motor Speedway got off to a perfect start Saturday morning.

Hours before making his NASCAR Xfinity Series debut with Joe Gibbs Racing, the 36-year-old put together the type of performance that’s made him renowned on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour. Bonsignore dominated the Mohegan Sun 100 to claim his third New Hampshire victory and 42nd overall in the series.

Previously possessing just one New Hampshire trophy in his first 13 full-time seasons on the Tour, the driver from Holtsville, New York has now won the last two editions of the Mohegan Sun 100. He said it is always a challenge to prevail in the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour’s crown jewel race, which makes the trips to New Hampshire’s Victory Lane even more special.

“We have 16 awesome races in a year, but this is our Daytona 500,” Justin said. “Everyone wants to win this race. There’s so much that goes into putting yourself in position and having a good car. It’s mentally tough to control and understand what you need to do in these late restarts.”

With the victory, he also reached an important milestone in the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour record books. He is now tied with Ted Christopher for third on the all-time series win list.

During his illustrious career, Christopher won at New Hampshire five times in a Modified while also adding five more victories in what is now the ARCA Menards Series East. The gold standard set by Christopher at New Hampshire is something Justin and his fellow competitors strive to replicate with each visit to the facility.

“I forgot all about that,” Bonsignore said when asked about his feelings on his career standing. “You get caught up in these; we won Richmond in a crazy fashion, and these wins just happen in big fashion, and you kind of forget about stuff like that. But it’s really special.

“We all miss Ted. He would probably be busting my chops if he were here right now, that it was way harder when he did it and everything. But anytime you can have your name with those guys who were in the heyday when the Tour was just crazy stacked, is awesome.”

From the start of Saturday’s race, Bonsignore seemed primed to collect another New Hampshire win. He exchanged the lead with Modified Tour points leader Ron Silk several times in the opening half before assuming control of the race following an onslaught of cautions.

The closest challenge Justin received in the closing stages came in the form of his cousin, Kyle Bonsignore. Having maintained solid track position all day from the seventh starting position, Kyle patiently waited and pushed Justin away from the pack until a late caution set up a three-lap sprint to the finish.

Kyle was unable to make a move that could have drafted him past Justin on the final lap. Despite being disappointed with second, Kyle still had a reason to smile.

“I love racing with my cousin; he’s like my brother,” Kyle Bonsignore said. “I really wished that last caution hadn’t come out. We had a good gap behind us to where I could have actually tried a more aggressive move at the end. I got a little greedy and overdrove it into Turn 1 trying to set us up down the backstretch coming to the line.”

Justin Bonsignore also expressed satisfaction over the one-two finish at New Hampshire. He was grateful Kyle helped him prior to the last restart but was also relieved he did not have to play any substantial defense on the final lap.

“My cousin and I have raced against each other since we were 8 years old,” he said. “My dad said it was the first time we didn’t crash each other. I saw him get close in the mirror, and then my spotter said ‘clear by three, no run,’ so that was the most stress-free last lap probably anybody will run at Loudon down the back straightaway.”

The dominant victory provided Bonsignore a jolt of confidence prior to climbing into a Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota later Saturday afternoon. It also provided him some momentum as he looks to chase down Silk over the next several months for his fourth NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour title.

Chase Dowling, in his first start of 2024, brought home a strong third-place finish with Patrick Emerling and Sam Rameau rounding out the top five.

Tommy Catalano, Eric Goodale, Jake Johnson, Austin Beers and Silk were the rest of the top-10 finishers.

The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour will have nearly a month off before its next event, which will be the second leg of the Whelen Granite State Short Track Cup at Monadnock Speedway on July 20. Live coverage of the Duel at the Dog 250 will commence on FloRacing at 8 p.m. ET.

NWMT Mohegan Sun 200
New Hampshire Motor Speedway
June 22 2024

Justin Bonsignore
Kyle Bonsignore
Chase Dowling
Patrick Emerling
Sam Rameau
Tommy Catalano
Eric Goodale
Jake Johnson
Austin Beers
Ron Silk
Tyler Rypkema
Trevor Catalano*
Tim Connolly
Anthony Nocella
Matthew Kimball
Matt Swanson
John-Michael Shenette*
Tyler Catalano*
Ken Heagy
Luke Baldwin*
Andy Seuss
Craig Lutz
Jonathan McKennedy
Gary McDonald
Jacob Lutz*
Ryan Preece
Andy Jankowiak
Doug Coby
Melissa Fifield
Mike Marshall*
Joey Cipriano III*

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