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Polly Reid

Ron Silk of Norwalk, CT continued his dominating performance in the Tour type modified division at the 48th Annual World Series of Asphalt Racing at New Smyrna Speedway leading nearly the entire John Blewett III Memorial 76 lap event taking down his third victory of the week.
Ryan Preece crossed the line second, Tommy Barrett third, Eric Goodale fourth and Matt Hirschman the top five.

“Our car was great right from the beginning,” said Silk about the Ed Partridge owned, TS Haulers/Calverton Tree Farm sponsored modified. “We really haven’t done a whole lot to it- it’s been a fun week so far.”

Silk set fast time earlier in the afternoon but Tommy Barrett led the field to green after the top two positions were inverted. Barrett in the Robert B. Our/Cape Cod Aggregates/Canto Paving/Northeast Race Cars led the 17 car field to green with Silk on the outside, Preece, Chuck Hossfeld and Matt Hirschman the top five.

Barrett and Silk ran side by side for the first circuit before Silk dropped in line with Preece, Hossfeld and Justin Bonsignore the top five. Silk made his successful bid for the lead going low under Barrett heading into turn three emerging the new leader by lap 3.

As the green run continued, the field stretched out around the track in single file and at the half it was Silk at the point with Preece making gains in second, Barrett, Bonsignore, Goodale, Hossfeld, Hirschman, Jimmy Zacharias, Spencer Davis and Patrick Emerling the top ten.

As Silk, Preece, Barrett and Goodale remained consistent up front, a heated battle for fifth between Bonsignore, Hossfeld and Hirschman with 15 to go was settled five circuits later with Hossfeld passing for the spot taking Hirschman with him. Hirschman kept the momentum going taking fifth from Hossfeld one lap later.

At the checkers it was Silk winning the 76 lap JB III Memorial with series point leader Ryan Preece second, Barrett with his first podium finish third, Goodale and Hirschman the top five.

“Barrett looked like he was getting snug in the center, waiting to get back to the gas,” said Silk about setting up for the pass for the lead. “He got me on the start and I got up in the marbles on the right side a little bit so instead of trying to fight back I got in line. He was struggling getting through the center so I was able to turn under him and get by him. From there, I just rode for a long time, Ryan was second, I’m sure he was just riding too, keeping the same distance, I’m sure he was waiting for a caution at the end so he could try and race- it never came- it worked out for us.”

“It means a lot to win this race,” said Silk about taking the checkers in the JB III Memorial. “I won this race with the Hill’s in 2009, so it’s cool to win it again. I’m good friends with Jimmy – I was just starting to come around in racing when we lost John but I did get to know him a little. I always had a lot of respect for John and it’s pretty cool to win a race in his honor.”

“Ronnie and I just had really dominate cars tonight,” said Preece. “It was early in the race and I was just being patient, taking my time, I knew I had such a good car early on. Ronnie had me beat a little bit on the long run, I think we were both just riding there the longest time, being consistent and when it came time to go, he had a little bit more in him than I did. That’s something we can work on and that’s something we can look forward to in the 100 lapper. This is the first night we ran this set up- it was nice to get a good showing out of it. I’m looking forward to the 100 laps. We’ll make some good changes and keep moving forward.”

“Feels great,” said Barrett about collecting his first podium finish of the week. “We’re a new team, we’re down here to get the bugs out of car, out of me, hopefully the team will get a chance to gel a little better so hopefully we won’t have to do that from the Icebreaker on. Brad Lafontaine said you have to walk before you run, we’re headed in the right direction.”

Jimmy Zacharias crossed the stripe for sixth with Chuck Hossfeld, Spencer Davis, Justin Bonsignore, Rob Fuller and Patrick Emerling the top ten.

With two events left on the schedule for the Tour type modifieds in the 48th Annual World Series of Asphalt Racing, Ryan Preece holds a 3 point lead over Ron Silk going into tonight’s 35 lap feature. Hope you can join Denise DuPont's live updates on www.thechromehorn.com starting with qualifying this afternoon at 4:30pm.

Source: Polly Reid / TheChromeHorn.com
Posted: February 20, 2014

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