It was a weekend that Jason Agugliaro will never forget. Last Friday, the 29-year-old married his fiance, Theresa, at a small ceremony at his parents' house in Islip, his hometown.
But the honeymoon will have to wait.
"We're going to plan something for after the season is over," said Agugliaro, who works in auto body and welding at Northeastern Bus Rebuilders in Deer Park. "I'm not exactly sure what we're going to do."
And it's a good thing the couple voted against immediately jet-setting to a tropical location. Agugliaro followed up his performance as a loving groom with a victory last Saturday night in the 35-lap NASCAR modified feature, his first victory of the season.
After a fast start in which Agugliaro raced "hard," putting considerable distance between him and the rest of the field, the newlywed had to fight off Tom Rogers Jr. of Riverhead in the final 11 laps to secure the victory.
"There was a little bit of contact and, one time, he had me sideways," Agugliaro said of the final stretch. "But, he [let] me correct it . . . I held my ground and maintained my speed."
The confrontation had an ironic undertone to it. For it was the generosity of Rogers Jr. that allowed Agugliaro to keep racing in the beginning of the season. As Agugliaro was preparing for a week two contest, he found water in the oil of his car.
The incident required repairs that would take nearly a month and a half. In the interim, Agugliaro drove Rogers' backup car, which was loaned to him by the driver and the car's owner, Joe Ambrose.
Agugliaro enjoyed driving the backup so much that saying goodbye to it was a bittersweet moment.
"I made really good friends with [Rodgers and Ambrose]," Agugliaro said. "They taught me a few tricks. But I was happy to get my car back."
After a few weeks of close losses with his regular car, Agugliaro finally ran that elusive winning race thanks, in part, to new shocks installed on his wedding day.
Agugliaro said the shocks help with weight transfer.
"Right out of the box, the car was fast," he said. "You can get on the gas and stay on it longer."
New shocks, a wedding, and a victory. Not a bad way to spend a weekend.
(Through Aug. 2)
1. Howie Brode, East Islip, 295
2. Tom Rogers Jr., Riverhead, 268
3. Ryan Preece, Berlin, Conn., 238
4. Ed Brunnhoelzl III, Levittown, 207
5. Jason Agugliaro, Islip, 183
Featured racing starts at 6 p.m.: eight-cylinder demolition derby, twin 50s modifiers (time trials), figure eights, chargers, blunderbusts, super pro trucks, 30-lap national qualifier legends (time trials).