Clapperton grabs first career win, Hodge and Crandall pull out wins on the night
AFTON, NY – After a four week hiatus due to three weeks of rainouts and a week off for the Afton Fair, The Afton Motorsports Park returned to action on Friday night with Alex Tonkin out-dueling his brother, Brett to win the Mid Season Championship feature for the Modifieds.
Dennis Clapperton captured his first career feature win by winning the Open Sportsman feature with Allan Hodge winning the Crate Sportsman feature. Recent Afton High School graduate Damon Decker continued his great season as he captured the Street Stock Mid Season Championship, and Bob Crandall won the Four Cylinder Truck feature.
Eddie Newell and Matt Roberts brought the Modified field to green to start their Mid Season Championship 30 lap feature, and with three caution flag periods taking place before a lap was scored, track officials called for a single file start.
On the restart Newell would lead Roberts, Steve Babicek, Alex Tonkin, and Brett Tonkin. Roberts jumped to the extreme top groove to grab the lead exiting turn four to complete lap two.
Babicek moved into second on lap three and the backslide of Newell continued as Alex Tonkin dropped him to fourth on lap four – Brett Tonkin passed Newell for fourth on lap five.
The early big move took place on lap seven as Andy Bachetti moved from 12th to sixth with a four wide pass on the back-straight among the highlights.
As soon as Bachetti made this outstanding move, smoke started to puff from the engine.
Alex Tonkin was leading the Tonkin Family charge to the front with his brother Brett right on his back bumper. The Tonkins’ moved into second and third on lap eight with Alex now breaking away from Brett as he set sail after leader Roberts.
Meanwhile Bachetti, Babicek, Kurt Decker, and JR Hurlburt were racing for positions four through eighth with Bachetti taking fourth on lap ten followed by Babicek, Decker, and Hurlburt.
Up front, Roberts, who was looking for his first career Modified win, lost the lead to Alex Tonkin who was glued to the bottom of the track on lap 15. The great run of Roberts ended one lap later as he rolled to a stop in turn two to bring out the yellow.
On the restart the Tonkins’ pulled away from Bachetti who started to see power loss from the oil smoke puffing from the engine. Following a lap 17 restart the power was even less in the Bachetti car as he was passed for third by Decker.
Bachetti kept driving hard and re-passed Decker for third on lap 19 as he brought Babicek along with him as he moved into fourth.
Finally the motor in the Bachetti car gave up, as he stopped to bring out the yellow on lap 20 ending his night.
On the restart with ten laps to go Alex Tonkin pulled out to a comfortable lead over his brother Brett. Meanwhile, Decker hopped up to the extreme high side to grab third back from Babicek on lap 21.
Alex Tonkin in for his second career Modified feature win over his brother Brett, Decker, Babicek, and Ken Titus rounded out the top five.