Chris Pasteryak didn’t want to sit home and watch piles of snow build up on his lawn this past winter. He wanted to go racing, so that’s what he did. Pasteryak and his Connecticut-based team loaded up his No. 5 Troyer Modified and headed south to compete in a pair of KOMA Unwind Modified Madness Series events in North Carolina. That experience racing at Ace Speedway and Hickory Motor Speedway was an experience that paid off Sunday afternoon in New Hampshire.
Pasteryak rocketed to the lead on lap 90 and survived a late restart to win the 2nd Annual Tri-Track Open Modified Series Bullring Bash at Lee USA Speedway (NH).
“Going down there definitely paid off today,” Pasteryak told Speed51.com powered by JEGS. “We came here, unloaded and the car wasn’t great. I just said, ‘What did we have at Hickory?’ I put exactly what we ended up with at Hickory (NC) in the car here today and it worked really good in the race.”
In a race that rewarded the conservation of tires, as well as the knowledge of the right time to shift it into high gear, Pasteryak played it perfect. Starting from the fifth spot, the Lisbon, Connecticut native conserved his tires early on while others set a torrid pace up front. He began to turn it on near the halfway point of the race and made his charge to the front. When early leader Steve Masse slipped and nearly made contact with the outside wall with 10 laps to go, Pasteryak pounced on his opportunity.
“What is in my head is that I lost a couple of races to Tommy Barrett like this,” Pasteryak said when asked about his strategy in a race like this. “I lost a couple of races to Matt Hirschman like this. I lost races to guys like that. When it comes time to go with 20 laps to go, now you’re in a track position game. Now if you pit, you’re coming in before everybody else and you’re taking tires. The race worked out perfect for me to win. Had it gone different, it might not of.”
Once he took over the top spot, the 34-year-old Modified pilot set sail until the second and final caution of the event occurred with just three laps remaining. The caution set up a restart that would see Woody Pitkat to his outside and Todd Annarummo behind him. That wouldn’t be enough to stop Pasteryak on this day, however. A great restart allowed Pasteryak to clear the rest of the field into turn one, and he never looked back from there.
“I would’ve much rather not had the restart,” Pasteryak said with a laugh. “But the car was good and it was easy on the rear tires the whole run. The car took off and I was actually kind of shocked it too off as good as it did. It was like I was worried about nothing.”
Annarummo made a late race charge to get by Pitkat and claim runner-up honors. Pitkat, who led a number of laps early on, finished third after setting a torrid pace early on.
“I didn’t really push it, I kind of wanted to get a good jump the first five laps and kind of slow it down and maintain,” said Pitkat. “I think Masse was just kind of doing what I did. We got the tail end of the field and we were lucky we didn’t get crashed. After that I just wanted to set my own pace and get some lap money.
“I think if I could have gotten in front of him (Masse) for the lead before Pasteryak got him then maybe that would have been a little harder, but Chris had a good car. Some of those lapped cars, I don’t know what they were doing. I’ll remember that for the Tour race, some of those guys that I race with.”
Defending NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour champion Andy Seuss returned to his home state of New Hampshire on Sunday and finished fourth. Anthony Nocella rounded out the top-five after making a strong charge towards the front late in the race.
For his win on Sunday, Pasteryak will be able to cash a paycheck well over $5,000 after lap leader money is factored in. Although the money is nice, he admitted that it’s not why he comes to the race track.
“It always helps (the prize money), but we’re not lacking for anything to be brutally honest,” said Pasteryak. “We have as good of stuff as the next guy. We don’t run NASCAR because we like coming and running these races.”
Prior to his win on Sunday, Pasteryak’s last win in Tour-Type Modified competition was a Valenti Modified Racing Series win at Stafford Motor Speedway (CT) on September 9, 2011. The two-time VMRS champion was very happy to end his winless streak with a win in a high profile race such as the Bullring Bash.
“This is one heck of a confidence builder and a great way to break the streak.”
(Editor’s Note: 51’s Trackside Now presented by Billy the Kid Engines can be viewed at the following link: http://speed51.com/trackside-now-bullring-bash-lee-speedway/
-By Brandon Paul, Speed51.com Editor – Twitter: @Brandon_Paul51
-Photo credit: Speed51.com
Bullring Bash 100 Unofficial Results
Lee USA Speedway – May 17. 2015
|15||23||Mike Douglas, Jr.|
|23||50ma||Carl Medeiros, Jr.|