Donny Lia Turns Momentum Around With Two Strong Finishes Third at Riverhead and Fourth in SK Mod Make for a Good Weekend HUNTINGTON, NY (June 7, 2005) -- There is nothing like going and playing on your home field when you are in a slump. And...
Donny Lia Turns Momentum Around With Two Strong Finishes
Third at Riverhead and Fourth in SK Mod Make for a Good Weekend
HUNTINGTON, NY (June 7, 2005) -- There is nothing like going and playing on your home field when you are in a slump. And after a broken hub at Thompson and a crash at Stafford to start out his 2005 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour season, Donny Lia was in a little bit of a slump.
So returning to his hometrack of Riverhead Raceway, a place where he had won two NASCAR Modified Tour events in the past two seasons, was a welcome thing for Lia and his #18 Huntington Honda team team. Their expectations for the race were met when Lia finished third in the 150-lap race.
"I think this gets us going a little bit," said Lia. "It puts us on track for a streak of good finishes. Hopefully we can start something from this. I've been having terrible luck and maybe not making the right decisions. You aren't going to turn that around and just go out and win. It's possible, but I think that a third place finish is more realistic and it's a good start."
The Riverhead finish wasn't the only good news of the weekend for Lia. On Friday night, he drove the #47 Wisk/Snuggle SK Modified to a fourth place finish at Stafford Motor Speedway (CT). Lia's SK Mod season has been an exercise of being in the wrong place at the wrong time, with a trail of wrecks so far in 2005.
"Finally they can bring the car home and make it better and not just fix it."
Even though this weekend's results were different than the previous few weeks, Lia did not change anything in his approach to the races.
"I didn't do anything differently really. It's just a matter of having normal luck for a chance. I tried to be patient and make it to the end of both races cleanly. My spotter Brian [Crowley] did a good job of keeping me in line in both races. It worked out. We took what we could get in both races."
Despite being Lia's hometrack, Riverhead is a tough place to turn around a streak of bad luck.
"Not only is the place tight, but it's easy to get to get into trouble there. We had a good car and we could have gone to the front, but you've got to be smart. We used the car up a little bit coming from 11th and I did what I could. We finished as good as we could and this week that was a third-place finish. It was what we needed."
It's also something to build on.
"With two good races, it's a little more momentum than you would think. It's what both teams and myself needed. I'm happy for both the #18 team and the SK guys because they have been working their butts off. I think that both teams are capable of winning as long as things go our way. If we have a little bit of luck and we get our set-ups right, we can win. Whether it happens or not, depends on if it's our turn this weekend or not."
Next weekend is going to be a busy one with two chances at victory lane for Lia. On Friday, he'll run the #47 SK at Stafford and on Sunday, he'll head over to Thompson Speedway for a chance at a Modified Tour victory there.
"I want to win a Modified race in Connecticut so bad whether it is a SK race or a Tour race," said Lia. "It would be awesome to do that this weekend. We need to finish well and start winning some races again."