Alex Bright
Alex Bright

Alex Bright
Collegeville, PA

Three Wheelin’! Perigo Scores First Career Win at Action Track


USAC East Coast Sprint Cars

Three Wheelin’! Perigo Scores First Career Win at Action Track

Kutztown, PA. July 12th, 2023. Nick Fillman, USAC ECSC

Carmen Perigo of Stoystown, PA was able to pick up his first career USAC East Coast Sprint Car Series win in dramatic fashion on Wednesday night at Action Track USA, holding off Briggs Danner in a last lap, last corner battle, with a nearly flat right rear tire!

Preston Lattomus and Carmen Perigo Jr lead the field to green for the 30 lap, “Iron Cowboy Classic” at the 1/5th mile Action Track USA. Carmen Perigo was able to get the drop on the young gun Lattomus, and pulled away to a narrow lead.

Briggs Danner was quick on the move from the 8th place starting spot, and was inside the top five by the completion of lap five. Alex Bright followed suit and was hot on the heels of the top five within a handful of laps. Positions were hard fought on the tight confines of Action Track USA with Lattomus, doing his best to try and hold off the advances of Joey Amatea, Chris Allen, and Briggs Danner, as Perigo pulled away and was quickly zeroing in on the back of the field.

Perigo quickly encountered lapped traffic around lap 10, but as quickly as Perigo was catching the lapped traffic, he was able to dispatch of them and add too his lead. Perigo raced ahead sometimes, going three wide with lapped traffic, while Briggs Danner began his charge picking off, Amantea, then Chris Allen in a near four wide battle with lapped cars and Preston Lattomus to move into the runner up spot by lap fifteen, the halfway mark.

As the laps continued to roll by, Perigo refused to show any mercy over the field and was amassing a near 3/4 track lead, beginning to move in and lap cars within the top ten. Danner had separated himself from the battles for position inside the top five between Allen, Amantea, Lattomus, and Alex Bright who continued his march through the field.

Perigo was running a line that Kyle Cummins used to score the victory in the USAC National Series debut in June, right around the middle lane of the speedway with Danner, and the rest of the top five pounding the cushion that was forming against the wall.

Around lap 20, Perigo was absolutely gone and away from the rest of the field, as Danner was not closing in on the race leader through the lapped cars. Just as it looked like the hour glass was beginning to run thin for Danner, the first caution flag of the night flew as Bobby Butler went around in turns one and two, narrowly making contact with the runner up Briggs Danner.

The ensuing restart with only a 10 laps to go, brought Danner to the back bumper of Perigo, with Alex Bright now moving into the third place position, and ready to make his attempt to get to the front of the field.

Perigo nailed the restart, and pulled away from Danner as he continued to run through the middle of the speedway with Danner and Bright running the top. As Perigo kept his lead, Danner was fully under attack from Alex Bright, who pressured and then passed Danner for the runner up spot with only a handful of laps remaining.

The events second caution flag flew on lap twenty-four, for an incident involving Bobby Butler and Scott Frack, with Frack coming to a stop in turns one and two. Again, the series top two drivers were now bumper to bumper behind Perigo with under five laps to go.

Carmen Perigo again nailed the restart and resumed running his line through the middle of the speedway, as now Briggs Danner attacked Alex Bright to try and regain the runner up spot as the duo exchanged slide jobs for the second place position. As Danner took back, and secured the runner up spot, Perigo had separated himself slightly from the rest of the field.

While his lead was slight, it became evident that Perigo was having a right rear tire go soft in the quickly evaporating laps of the feature event, still, Danner could not close in and take the race lead as the two to go signal came out for the field. Just as quickly as the signal was given, the caution flag flew yet again as Bobby Butler went for another spin in turns one and two.

On the final restart the quickly deflating right rear for Perigo was showing more than ever as the field received the green flag in a two lap dash to the finish. Perigo was able to pull away from Danner, but only slightly as Bright would poke his nose to the inside of Danner for second.

With the tire deflating for Perigo, he was not able to keep the car locked to the middle side of the speedway as he took the white flag for the final lap. Perigo entered one, and skated up the track on the exit of turn two, allowing Danner to diamond down the corner and get underneath Perigo for the race lead heading into turns three and four. The duo slid wide on the exit of turn four with Danner making contact right rear to left nerf bar on Perigo with Perigo bouncing off the cushion and wall in turn four, standing on the throttle wide open as the two would drag race off the corner to the finish line. Perigo utilizing the banking of the speedway powered around Danner down the front straight away and picked up his first career USAC East Coast Sprint Car Series victory in dramatic fashion.

While Carmen Perigo has been a sprint car feature winner before in his career, including five times with the BOSS Sprint Series this season alone, he has been snake bit on so many occasions with the USAC East Coast Series. Perigo and his team have had Action Track USA circled on their schedule all season long, wanting to get the job done at the bull ring speedway. The team made up of Perigo, his father, and son Brett, were thrilled to get the win on Wednesday night, and while everyone in the pit area wants to win, everyone in the pit area was more than exited for the team in their well overdue victory. In talking with Perigo in the pit area after the feature event, he explained that he knew on the last two restarts that the right rear was low, and on the final restart felt the right rear wheel begin to dig into the surface of the speedway, making the car hop and skip across the surface. Perigo explained that he was thankful what was left of the tire held together, explaining that the rear tire issue made the finish more exciting than he planned.

Try as he might, Briggs Danner came so close to the win at Action Track, and was just about the first person to greet Perigo in Victory Lane with to express his congratulations. Danner had explained in victory lane interviews that at the caution on lap twenty, he had though that he was the race leader, not realizing that Perigo was still out front, until the field cycled around. Danner fought tooth and nail with Bright for the runner up spot, and Perigo for the win, in an outstanding performance trying for the win. In the last three races Danner has scored two victories, and one very very close runner up finish, adding to his points lead, and showing that the Hogue Racing team is really coming together. Still though, when talking with car owner Tim Hogue, he expressed “were getting there” and there is still work to be done. Look for Danner and team to head to Indiana Sprint week for the second half, starting at the Terre Haute Action Track.

Alex Bright was a big mover on the night, coming home third from the 13th starting position in the feature event. Bright moved through the field quickly and furiously, nearly stealing a runner up finish. Bright and team nearly scored the win in dramatic fashion at the Delaware International Speedway, and put on a show again at Action Track USA. Next up for Bright and the Heffner Enterprises South team is a trip west to Indiana, for the 2023 edition of Indiana Sprint Week.

Coming home in fourth yet again was Mt. Pocono, PA’s Joey Amantea. Amantea and team have begun to get their program figured out, clicking off the top fives in their last handful of starts. While Amantea and team are to the point where they are slightly disappointed with a fourth place effort, Joey explained in the pit area that their power plant was not running as well as it should have in the feature event, possibly preventing the driver from moving even further forward. Like Bright and Danner, Amantea will now set his sights on Indiana for his first ever Indiana Sprint Week trip.

Completing the top five with yet another strong run on his season, was Christopher Allen Jr. The former winner at the speedway has been fast each and every time out this season. Allen and team need just a little bit more to get back into the win column, but the team has shown that they have plenty of speed to get to the front, and content for wins. Look for Allen and team to keep up their strong runs through the end of the season.

The show on Wednesday night at Action Track USA, was the only show of July for the series, as we are now off to allow our drivers to competed in other events during July like 600 Speedweek, and Indiana Sprint Week. The series will return to action at the Lincoln Speedway on Saturday August 5th, before moving back to the Winchester Speedway on August 12th, and rounding out the month at the Port Royal Speedway on August 19th, and back to Action Track USA on Sunday, August 20th.

USAC East Coast at Action Track USA Results:

Heat 1 (10 Laps, 5 Transfer, 3 Invert): 1. 20 Tim Buckwalter, 2. 39 Briggs Danner, 3. 18J JT Ferry, 4. 11 Mike Thompson, 5. 83 Bruce Buckwalter Jr, 6. 39x Scott Frack, 7. 44 Gary Huston, 8. 3H Heidi Hedin, 9. 17B Christian Bruno. ?
Heat 2 (10 Laps, 5 Transfer, 3 Invert): 1. 19 Steven Drevicki, 2. 23B Preston Lattomus, 3. 7 Ed Aikin, 4. 7B Aidan Borden, 5. 87 Austin Graby, 6. 96 Lee Kauffman, 7. 1 Patrick Chilmonik, 8. 45R Brett Rose.

Heat 3 (10 Laps, 5 Transfer, 3 Invert): 1. 21 Carmen Perigo Jr, 2. 71 Chris Allen Jr, 3. 88J Joey Amantea, 4. 27 Alex Bright, 5. 23M Kenny Miller lll, 6. 5B Bobby Butler, 7. 29 Dalton Herrick, 8. X Brendan Hires.

Semi Feature (10 Laps, 5 Transfer): 1. 39x Scott Frack, 2. 5B Bobby Butler, 3. 29 Dalton Herrick, 4. X Brandon Hires, 5. 44 Gary Huston, 6. 1 Patrick Chilmonik, 7. 45R Brett Rose, 8. 3H Heidi Hedin, 9. 96 Lee Kauffman, 10. 17B Christian Bruno (DNS)

Feature Event (30 Laps): 1. 21 Carmen Perigo Jr, 2. 39 Briggs Danner, 3. 27 Alex Bright, 4. 88J Joey Amantea, 5. 71 Chris Allen Jr, 6. 20 Tim Buckwalter, 7. 19 Steven Drevicki, 8 23M Kenny Miller lll, 9. 18J JT Ferry, 10. 11 Mike Thompson, 11. X Brendan Hires, 12. 39x Scott Frack, 13. 29 Dalton Herrick, 14. 23B Preston Lattomus, 15. 5B Bobby Butler, 16. 7B Aidan Borden, 17. 83 Bruce Buckwalter Jr, 18. 7 Ed Aikin, 19. 87 Austin Graby, 20. 44 Gary Huston.

Article Credit: Nick Fillman

Submitted By: Nick Fillman

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