Three-Peat: Melissa Fifield Wins Whelen Modified Tour Most Popular Driver Award For 2016

Melissa Fifield

Melissa Fifield

For the third consecutive year NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour’s only full-time female driver was once again named the division’s most popular.

NASCAR announced the most popular driver award winners in six touring divisions Wednesday and it was Fifield, of Wakefield, N.H., once again garnering the honor for the Whelen Modified Tour.

More than 47,000 votes were cast online worldwide in the contest.

The other 2016 Most Popular Driver Award winners were:

• Austin Theriault (Fort Kent, Maine), NASCAR K&N Pro Series East
• Salvatore Iovino (Los Angeles), NASCAR K&N Pro Series West
• Trey Hutchens (Lexington, N.C.), NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour
• Jason Hathaway (St. Thomas, Ont.), NASCAR Pinty’s Series
• Alon Day (Ashdod, Israel), NASCAR Whelen Euro Series

The list includes four repeat winners in Fifield, Hutchens, Hathaway and Day.

There was also nearly an historic first: Hutchens, who competed in both the K&N Pro Series East and Whelen Southern Modified Tour this year, finished a close second to Theriault in the K&N Pro East voting while taking the top honors in the Whelen Southern Modified Tour for the second straight year.

Iovino emerged in front in a close three-way battle in the K&N Pro West with Jesse Iwuji and series champion Todd Gilliland.

Hathaway, who announced he was retiring from full-time competition after racing in all 121 events in series history, ran away with the award in the Pinty’s Series.

Day, who was selected to the NASCAR Next program as one of the sport’s rising stars, won the award for the second consecutive season.

The award was open to any driver who competed in at last half of the races in their respective series.

Monday, Elliott Sadler (NASCAR XFINITY Series) and Tyler Reddick (NASCAR Camping World Truck Series) received the Most Popular Driver Award for their respective series in their awards gala at the Loews Miami Beach Hotel.

The NASCAR touring series Most Popular Drivers will be recognized on stage as part of the NASCAR Touring Series Night of Champions on Saturday, Dec. 10 at the Charlotte (North Carolina) Convention Center at the NASCAR Hall of Fame.

This report includes information from a NASCAR Intergrated Marketing Communications press release.


  1. well i guess I will be the mean spirited first to knock this bogus award.No matter how many black flags,handling issues there are she still wins.I have made it a point to look and see if anyone is clapping and I never see it.What does it say about this young woman to be so uncompetitive and yet lobby for this award.The good news is we get to spend another season on the edge of our seats to see if she will wreck someone.Happy Thanksgiving to all the voters who made this possible

  2. Andy Boright says

    Why should we expect NASCAR to get this right, when they mismanage just about everything else in their control?

    If you attend Whelen Modified tour races on a regular basis, you know what a farce it is to label Fifield the series most popular driver. She certainly wasn’t the most popular driver at the Icebreaker pit party, she had a stack of hero cards she couldn’t pay people to take away.

  3. Liz Cherokee says

    Pop the cork! I couldn’t be more exultant! Congratulations to Melissa!
    Just think next year she can be introduced as the three time defending winner of the prestigious Whelen Modified Tour Most Popular Driver Award… The sound of that sends a tingle up my leg!
    Ok, time for some Crystal… Anyone wish to clank glasses worn me?
    Happy Thanksgiving and bottoms up boys! XOXOX

  4. darealgoodfella says

    So she’ll use this award to solicit sponsorship to run another season so we can cringe and squirm when the 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, 9, 16, 25, 29, 44, 51, 82 et al. go roaring by.

    This is about gaming a system.

  5. OMG, gag me with a spoon, most popular driver, really?

  6. No it sounds like the 4-8_9_44 won’t be roaring by ,1 win in the bunch,so they’re taking there toys and going home and the 01 will still be doing what she loves and the rest can criticize from the couch

  7. Nasty woman says

    Another reason to bury this series

  8. vote is rigged says

    I voted for Mellisa 165 times in one day using a VPN app.

  9. Unfortunately this is probably the only award she will ever win. Sad but true.

  10. Tony Cockalota says

    Fifield doesn’t cheat if Fifield cheated Teddy would find out and tell Bear that she was a better cheater then him, Depisa would fire Bear and Bear would tell Pete who wouldn’t build a motor for Fifield

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