Auto Racing: A milestone win for Riverhead’s Goodale

Eric Goodale of Riverhead secured an elusive first NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour win by racing to victory at Saturday’s Hoosier Tire 200 at Riverhead Raceway. 

After a late yellow flag, Goodale seized the lead from Ted Christopher, who had been racing earlier against John Beatty Jr. for the lead. Over the final 20 laps of the 50-mile race, Goodale stretched out his lead over Christopher, who had appeared destined for a win prior to the yellow.

Goodale noted after the race how he’s been coming to Riverhead Raceway since he was 3 years old.

“To get my first Whelen Modified Tour win here in front of all these people makes it that much more special for me and my team,” he said.

Christopher, who’s from Plainville, Conn., finished second and Matt Hirschmann of Northampton, Pa., placed third for his best finish at Riverhead. Ryan Preece of Berlin, Conn., and Timmy Solomito of Islip rounded out the top five. While an early leader in the race, Beatty slipped to 12th in the final standings.

Preece’s 160 points now has him third in the modified point standings behind Howie Brode (197) and Tom Rogers Jr. (170).

Racing continued Sunday with the Grand Enduro event. Jimmy White Jr. of Southampton continued his winning ways by claiming his third straight victory in the 50-lap feature event. Greg Zaleski of Jamesport finished second and James Charrier of Shirley was third.

Greg Harris enjoyed another comfortable win in the truck enduro. Harris led comfortably throughout the race over second-place finisher Rob McCormick of Calverton and Hank Hallock of Riverhead, who took third.

In the first 8-Cylinder Enduro, veteran driver Anthony Pizzo of Lake Ronkonkoma was the winner in the 75-lap race. Jim Laird Jr. of Islip Terrace finished second and Kris Dane of Hicksville was third.

In a second 8-Cylinder Enduro race, Jimmy Denis, who was home on leave from the U.S. Army, raced Rob McCormick’s car to victory. Denis is a former Grand Enduro standout. His sister dates McCormick. Anthony Pizzo was second and Jess Martines was third.

In the 4-/6-Cylinder Enduro, Steve Trimboli of Freeport was the winner after Mike Mujsce’s car stalled with him in the lead. Peter Verwys of East Rockaway was second and Mike Wahl of East Islip was third.

Racing continues again Saturday, starting with the legends heats at 4:30 p.m. The main show starts at approximately 6 p.m.