Donny Lia Makes First Stafford Mod Tour Victory Count Racer Wins Spring Sizzler in Second Start for Mystic Missile Team HUNTINGTON, NY (April 29, 2007) -- Ever since he won the Rookie of the Year title on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour in...
Donny Lia Makes First Stafford Mod Tour Victory Count
Racer Wins Spring Sizzler in Second Start for Mystic Missile Team
HUNTINGTON, NY (April 29, 2007) -- Ever since he won the Rookie of the Year title on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour in 2003, Donny Lia has had winning a race at the Stafford Motor Speedway (CT) near the top of his to-do list. The facility is one of the most historic tracks that the Tour visits, and it is widely known as one of the trickiest places on the schedule as well.
Lia had come close to winning at Stafford before. He's been fast time after time there, but there has always been something to keep him from visiting victory lane. He's been caught up in wrecks and had mechanical problems. He's even finished second while crossing the finish line on three wheels.
On Sunday afternoon, Lia finally broke through at Stafford in a big way when he won the most prestigious race on the track's schedule, the Spring Sizzler.
"When it comes to tracks that you want to win at, this place, Thompson and Loudon rank right up there," said Lia. "This is a challenging track. It has challenged me, and it took me a long time to feel like I had figured it out. I still haven't figured it out. There are always different things to learn here. It's a driver's track. I've won Tour races at Riverhead and Waterford. I love those two tracks, I really do. But it doesn't feel like this. This track is an icon of the Modified Tour. To win here really just feels amazing."
Lia won in only his second start as the driver of Bob Garbarino's Mystic Missile #4 car. Garbarino is one of the most accomplished team owners in Modified racing, and he has won just about everywhere, but Sunday's victory was all a first for him. It was the first time that he won the Spring Sizzler, and Lia was nearly speechless about that.
"I'm proud," said Lia. "I don't know what to feel about that really. I'm just glad that he is having me drive his car. He has been owning racecars on the Modified Tour for 40-something years. He's very highly respected, and he could have anyone drive his racecars. The fact that he chose me and has faith in me to drive his car really means a lot to me.
"I'm glad that we were able to win today. These guys gave me an amazing car today. It really feels like we accomplished something big here today. This is awesome.
"To win so quickly together really says something about this team, and without trying to sound cocky, I think that it says something about myself. I always wondered if I'd even get it done here [at Stafford]. Sometimes you need a day like this to remind yourself that you can do it."
Lia will return to action next Sunday as the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour heads to Wall Township Speedway (NJ) for the next event on their schedule. Racing will take place there on Sunday, May 6th.