Justin Bonsignore, driver of #51 Phoenix Communications Inc. Chevrolet with the fastest time during practice during the Miller Lite 200 for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour at Riverhead Raceway in Riverhead, New York on May 15, 2021. (Kathryn Riley/NASCAR)
RIVERHEAD, N.Y. — Justin Bonsignore is looking to defend his home turf. He started strong with practice Saturday afternoon.
The two-time NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour champion topped the charts at Riverhead Raceway with a lap of 11.539 seconds (77.996 mph) in his No. 51 Coastal Fiber LLC Chevrolet around the quarter-mile bullring.
Bonsignore has won seven of the last 10 tour stops at his home track. Saturday night’s Miller Lite 200 is the third race of the 2021 season and the first of three tour races at Riverhead.
RELATED: Complete Practice Results
Doug Coby, who briefly topped the charts halfway through the one-hour session, wound up second quick. He had a lap of 11.547 – just .008 behind Bonsignore. The six-time tour champion is looking for his first win at Riverhead.
Ron Silk was third quick at 11.553, followed by Patrick Emerling and Jon McKennedy.
Championship poins leader Eric Goodale was sixth, followed by Craig Lutz, Tommy Catalano, Chuck Hossfeld and Timmy Solomito. Goodale (2014) and Solomito (2016 and twice in 2017) are the only drivers beside Bonsignore to win at Riverhead since 2014.
NASCAR Cup Series driver Ryan Preece, a three time Riverhead winner between 2012-13, was 14th fastest.
Qualifying for the Miller Lite 200 is scheduled for 6 p.m., with the race at 8 p.m. live on TrackPass on NBC Gold.