Past Modified Champion Tomaino to be Honored at Spencer Speedway
NASCAR to Recognize Tomaino on July 12
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 3, 2008) -- As part of a season-long celebration of 60 years of Modified champions, 1990 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour titlist Jamie Tomaino will be honored at the Mason Farms 100 on July 12 at Spencer Speedway in Williamson, N.Y.
Tomaino, who has run more races than any driver in the history of the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, was a model of consistency during his championship season of 1990. Of the 23 races on the schedule, Tomaino finished in the top 10 a remarkable 18 times. He had 10 top-fives, and won at Monadnock Speedway.
Despite the success he found in 1990, the prior season provided Tomaino with a lot of uncertainty. He and car owner Bill Potts parted ways in 1989, but he was able to hook up with Danny Ust and things took off from there.
"I found a guy [Ust] that had a race car in his garage and I asked him if I could use it," Tomaino said. "One thing led to another and the season was a Cinderella story."
The Howell, N.J., native will enter the Mason Farms 100 at Spencer with 490 career starts under his belt, and has missed just four races in the 24-year history of the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour. He is slated to become the first driver to make 500 starts at Spencer's sister track, Chemung Speedrome, on Oct. 4.
In his 23 seasons as a regular on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour heading into 2008, Tomaino finished in the top 10 in the points standings 13 times, and was the runner-up to Jimmy Spencer's title in 1986.
"I was fortunate enough when the Tour started that Bill Potts gave me the best equipment there was back then and I consistently ran up front, then I was able to pick up the ride with Danny Ust to win the championship," Tomaino said. "Since the championship, things aren't that simple anymore. I've struggled to stay alive in this sport as of 2008, but I'm lucky enough to still do what I love."
Tomaino has always remained thankful for those that gave him a start in racing and put him in a position to be successful.
"I've got to thank Howard Harvey, Bill Potts and Danny Ust for all that they did for my racing career," Tomaino said. "Without them, I would not have been able to have the long career that I've had."
NASCAR plans to honor each of its 31 all-time Modified champions throughout the season. The celebration began with the recognition of Frankie Schneider, Donny Lia and Richie Evans at Thompson (Conn.) International Speedway on April 6. Since the season-opener Red Byron, Jeff Fuller, Ernie Gahan, Spencer and Mike Stefanik have also been recognized.
The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour will return to Spencer Speedway on Saturday, July 12 for the first time since 1994, and for just the fifth time overall. Tomaino, along with Williamson native Jan Leaty, are the only two drivers entered in the Mason Farms 100 who have participated in the previous four races at the track. For ticket information, please visit Spencer's official Web site (spencerspeedway.org).