Looking Back: Justin Bonsignore Wins Again At Thompson, Doug Coby Takes 2016 Title

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·3 min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

For Doug Coby, the 2016 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour season finale at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park was a next step toward an historic legacy.

For Justin Bonsignore, it was a bittersweet victory.

Coby came home in third place, but it was more than enough to secure his third straight championship and fourth overall. The title also moved him into the conversation of potentially matching the title totals of Modified greats such as Jerry Cook, Mike Stefanik and Richie Evans.

This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.
Update your settings here to see it.

They said the worse race to win — if there is such a thing, is the championship race, when you‘re not the actual champion. That‘s because all the attention gets focused on the big year-end trophy, overshadowing the events of the race.

In 2016, that was compounded for Bonsignore, as he won the Sunoco World Series 150 but came up 20 points short of dethroning Coby.

RACING-REFERENCE: Sunoco World Series 150 Race Results | 2016 Championship Standings

“It‘s our fifth win at Thompson, but probably the worst one we‘ve had considering the circumstances.

“This is a little depressing, I‘m not going to lie.”

Broadcaster Ray Evernham, though, was prophetic, as Bonsignore climbed out of his car in Victory Lane.

This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.
Update your settings here to see it.

Coby, who had a tour-high five wins in 2016, only recorded one in 2017. He had 10 top fives and 11 top 10s in 16 races, though, and edged Timmy Solomito for the championship by just six points.

Two years later, Coby added No. 6 and moved into the record books.

Bonsignore entered the 2017 finale mathematically in the hunt for the championship, but finished 10th and wound up third in points. He proved Evernham correct in 2018 with a dominating championship performance. He won eight of 16 races — including a season sweep of Thompson — to claim his first title.

Ryan Preece started last after missing qualifying to run in the NASCAR Xfinity Series race, and drove to second for car owner Ed Partridge. Preece would win five times in 2017 and twice more in 2018 before making the jump to the NASCAR Cup Series.

Jimmy Blewett finished third in the No. 4 “Mystic Missile” for longtime car owner Bob Garbarino, while Donny Lia was fifth.

After Blewett and Garbarino parted ways in the offseason, Garbarino elected to step away from the sport that he had been part of since the 1960s. Lia, who won Whelen Modifeid Tour titles for Garbarino in 2007 and ‘09, ran five more times in 2018 for Tommy Baldwin Jr. before announcing his retirement.

This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.
Update your settings here to see it.
Sunoco World Series of Racing presented by XtraMart at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park. #SUNOCOWORLDSERIES
Sunoco World Series of Racing presented by XtraMart at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park. #SUNOCOWORLDSERIES