Mike Stefanik Gets Nod For NASCAR Hall Of Fame Along With Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Mike Stefanik (Photo: NASCAR)

Seven-time NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour champion Mike Stefanik will be posthumously inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame as part of the 2021 induction class. 

NASCAR announced its 2021 class on Tuesday with Stefanik and Dale Earnhardt Jr. representing the Modern Era inductees. 

Stefanik was one of 10 individuals that was part of the Modern Era ballot for induction. Others on the Modern Era ballot included Neil Bonnett, Jeff Burton, Carl Edwards, Harry Gant, Harry Hyde, Larry Phillips, Ricky Rudd and Kirk Shelmerdine. 

Earnhardt received 76% of the Modern Era ballot votes, Stefanik received 49%. Ricky Rudd finished third, followed by Neil Bonnett.

Stefanik was first nominated for the NASCAR Hall of Fame in 2015.

Stefanik, who last raced with the Whelen Modified Tour in 2014, died from injuries sustained when he crashed while flying a single seat Aero Ultra-Light plane in Sterling, CT on Sept. 15, 2019. 

Stefanik, who also won two championships in the former NASCAR Busch North Series, is the all-time winningest driver on the Whelen Modified Tour with 74 career victories over 453 starts from 1985 to 2014. 

In addition to his seven Whelen Modified Tour titles (1989, ’91, ’97, ’98, 2001, ’02, ’06), Stefanik also won championships on the former Busch North Series (now ARCA Menards East Series) in 1997 and 1998. He ran one full-time season in the NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series in 1999. 

“Mike was the best Modified racer of my generation and anybody who wins nine nascar championships is certainly well deserving of being in the Hall of Fame,” six-time Whelen Modified Tour champion Doug Coby said. “He made a big impact on everybody in racing in the Northeast from Busch North to Modifieds from little kids to adults. So certainly a well deserved honor for one of the best I’ve ever seen.”

Stefanik was a 2018 inductee to the NEAR New England Auto Racing Hall of Fame. 

Stefanik, a Wilbraham, Mass. native, got his start in racing at the former Riverside Park Speedway in Agawam, Mass.

Stefanik is the third competitor who was primarily a Modified driver to be inducted into the Hall of Fame, joining Richie Evans (2012 inductee) and Jerry Cook (2016 inductee). 

Comments

  1. Very happy day. Nascar and fans got this 100percent correct. Great day for modified fans.🏁🏁🏁

  2. Very awesome news. Mike was arguably the GOAT of modified racing. Not only was he an ace wheelman, but also a great fabricator, and setup guru. In addition to his 9 championships, winning 2 Busch north titles simultaneously with modified championships. Something I don’t recall any other driver doing. The sadness falls knowing Mike, who was taken too soon, won’t be able to celebrate his accolades with his family, but I’m sure Julie and the girls will represent him well on induction night and beyond.wonder if the car his daughter drove at Thompson will be chosen to be displayed.
    RIP “Mighty Mike” you are now a NASCAR Hall of Famer.
    🏁🏁🏁🏁🏁🏁🏁🏁🏁 👍👍

  3. wish it was a year ago!! simple as that, got passed over and should not have been. period

  4. What Reg said.
    Richie Evans 2012, Jerry Cook 2016 and now Stefanik. Impressive!

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