Q&A With NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Series Director Jimmy Wilson

Jimmy Wilson (Photo: Jason Smith/pixelcrisp for NASCAR)

The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour is set to kick off its 2020 schedule with the running of the Wade Cole Memorial 133 presented by Dunleavy’s Truck & Trailer Repair on June 21. 

The event, which will be contested without fans in attendance, is an addition to the 2020 Whelen Modified Tour schedule, with the originally scheduled series event at Jennerstown being rescheduled from May 23 to Aug. 22.

Beyond the two events scheduled at Jennerstown Speedway, how the rest of the 2020 schedule for the Whelen Modified Tour will play out remains a mystery.

Because of continued government restrictions in Connecticut, New York, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Virginia and Massachusetts it’s unclear when the series will get back to competing at any venues on the original schedule besides Jennerstown. The series was originally scheduled to run 17 events in 2020. Two of those events – at Martsinville (Va) Speedway and Iowa Speedway – have been cancelled. On May 22 series officials announced an additional event to the schedule to be run at Myrtle Beach (S.C.) Speedway on May 30. That event was ultimately postponed because of weather concerns.

Of the first seven scheduled events of the original 2020 schedule, five have been postponed indefinitely. Those events were scheduled at South Boston (Va.) Speedway, Thompson Speedway, Stafford Motor Speedway, Seekonk (Mass.) Speedway and Riverhead (N.Y.) Raceway. 

On Thursday we spoke with NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour series director Jimmy Wilson about some topics that have been on the minds of many associated with the division because of the scheduling issues caused by restrictions in place. 

Question: Has there been any communication within NASCAR about not awarding a Whelen Modified Tour Tour championship in 2020 because there’s no clear picture of how many races there could end up being? 

Jimmy Wilson: “No we haven’t had any conversations about that.” 

Question: Do you have any thoughts personally on that being a topic that may need to be examined at some point? 

Jimmy Wilson: “No, I don’t have anything to say about that. I think saying anything like that is very premature at this point.” 

Question: There have been some indications that the oval at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park may not open this year. Has management from Thompson Speedway communicated anything like that that to NASCAR or communicated that they’re not interested in rescheduling the three Whelen Modified Tour events that were scheduled for the track on the original 2020 schedule? 

Jimmy Wilson: “No, we’ve not had any conversations like that.” 

Question: Besides the two venues where races were cancelled, have there been any other tracks that were on the original 2020 schedule that have communicated to NASCAR that they don’t think they will be able to reschedule their series events this year? 

Jimmy Wilson: “No. Obviously there’s a lot that we still have to look at and see what the local governments allow us to do or not to do before we can make any decisions on that.” 

Question: There have been published reports by two national motorsports media outlets about the possibility of the NASCAR Cup Series event at New Hampshire Motor Speedway moving from July 19 to Aug. 2. If that were to happen would the Whelen Modified Tour event scheduled for July 18 also move with the Cup Series to that rescheduled weekend? 

Jimmy Wilson: “I know exactly what you know right now about that and that is that the race is scheduled for mid-July.” 

[EDITOR’S NOTE: About three hours after the publishing of this story it was announced that the NASCAR Cup Series race at NHMS was being rescheduled from July 19 to Aug. 2 and the July 18 Whelen Modified Tour event was being cancelled.]

Question: What is the status of the Myrtle Beach event that was added to the schedule for May 30 and then postponed to an unspecified date because of weather concerns? 

Jimmy Wilson: “The event is still postponed. We’re examining potential dates with the race track to see if we can do anything there. More to come later.” 

Do you enjoy what you’re reading and seeing here at RaceDayCT? Would you like to see continued coverage of New England short track racing? Your support can help ensure that professional coverage of short track racing can continue at RaceDayCT, and you can get some great rewards for that support. Patreon allows readers to make small monthly contributions to RaceDayCT that support the ongoing coverage of short track racing. Your pledge comes with exclusive tiered reward programs for offering that support. For just a $5 a month pledge fans can have access to the weekly Unmuffled podcast. For more information click the link here.


  1. Top Row Observer says

    So what exactly is news worthy of this Q and A? Might as well ask Marshawn Lynch what is going on with the Mod Tour this year.

  2. Shawn, it would be informative if the cause of the delays, postponements etc. were mentioned in the article. Racing, and so much more, has been put in a holding pattern because of the COVID-19 pandemic that has claimed 110,000 Americans, and some 390,000 people worldwide. This is a global pandemic. The government actions are in response to the pandemic and the means to prevent many more from dying.

  3. Jimmy Wilson clearly doesn’t like you. That was icy cold and uncomfortable.

  4. shawn… thanks for posting. appreciate your efforts in getting some answers about the prospects of the Tour this year. i dont think Wilson was “cold” per se, i think he honestly just doesnt know. at least the season hasnt been ruled out or even discussed to be ruled out, per Wilson’s answers. i suppose thats a positive.

  5. Very informative in that there clearly is no way forward at this point. The silence is deafening.

    The coronavirus is in control right now and how well we behave determines our future.

    But the garden centers are jammin’!!!

  6. One step above no comment. LOL.

  7. Anarchy 2020 says

    Seems Thompson has totally given up on the oval. I’m sure they’re still making enough money on the road course. Stafford hasn’t given up completely yet.

  8. Fast Eddie says

    This will sound dumb, but I think the lack of info actually tells us a lot. There have been no decisions made in either direction about the WMT. NASCAR, like the rest of us, are all in decision-making limbo pending the status and progress of the virus.

  9. Anybody ask what Jtown purse is? Obviously he knows the answers to the questions but won’t divulge it now before they run 1st race which could be the only race depending how it goes. This all just seems rushed, Concerts, Fairs, 4th of July celebrations all have moved on to 2021 without hesitation but the racing community thinks they know better than the billion dollar entertainment/amusement promoters and organizers? If you can’t do it correctly wait it out untill you can.

  10. Fast Eddie, great observation. Many times the null result is very valuable.

  11. The absence of information, saying things have not been discussed or they are being discussed but no decision has been reached is information. Reading that the Myrtle race has not been officially cancelled is information. Reading between the lines at a man under severe pressure, that has nothing to do with like or dislike and is getting on the record has value.

  12. First off thank you Shawn, I wish Wilson had been able to give you more information, but I applaud your efforts.
    This is a fluid situation, one we’ve never dealt with before. The status of reopening changes weekly, if not daily, and I don’t think anyone has any real answers about future events.

  13. wmass01013 says

    I THINK things have been discussed, he’s JUST not gonna tell anyone, he could of had atleast some more informative answers than NO NO NO NO AND NO, like I understand OWNERS-DRIVERS AND fans concern, we are talking with THOMPSON to see what direction they want, we are hoping by OCT to run ????? races, YOUR THE DAMMM DIRECTOR OF THE SERIES, talk to people HONESTLY, I know some answers are VERY UNKNOWN but SOME are Not and that was WEAK ON HIS PART, VERY WEAK!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  14. Um,no. No. Ah,no. Ok,no. That was worth it.

  15. I watch the rich boy toys go up and down 395 every day. Trust me Thompson is doing just fine collecting revenue from the road course bunch and I really believe they could care less if the oval ever opens again.

    Heard today that Waterford is just waiting for the scoring tower/concession structures to be built In the opening between the two sets of stands and they will be ready to go whenever they are allowed to open. Just don’t think there is enough days on the calendar for that to happen this year though.

  16. Jimmy Wilson, thanks for a whole lot of nothing.

  17. Liz Cherokee says

    I’d motion to have this guy held in contempt of court. He seems borderline hostile. Was he like this before COVID-19 started to eat into his paycheck?

  18. What do people expect NASCAR to do when the north eastern states where most of the races are run are not allowing these to tracks to run races? They don’t have tv money to pay the bills with. So how can nascar schedule any races until the states reopen and allow it? So they tried to run a last minute race that was cancelled. Several teams made it clear they weren’t going to go that far south to run a race with such a small purse. I hate defending NASCAR because I dislike them so much. They are between a rock and hard place with this series schedule. Everyone should be glad they don’t cancel the whole season… at least they are trying still! Did anyone crying about going to Myrtle beach really think going to Iowa speedway was a good idea too? Shawn keep up the good work!

  19. Sonny (Norman Harris),
    I know you’re struggling with this whole concept of reading and rules. I think we went over the rules before and you were struggling to grasp them so, let’s do it one more time. 1. No vulgarity; 2. No threatening people. You remember went over them a few weeks ago? As we’ve said before, two very very very simple rules. Also two rules you very clearly struggled with in the past. Please understand that continuing to leave angrier and angrier comments about me here is probably not a plan for success. Also, it makes no sense for you to post on Facebook that you never read anything here or visit this site when you try to leave comments on every other post. You’re kind of making a fool of yourself. Hey, how’s the races been at Riverside? Make sure you go get a grandstand ticket this weekend bud.

  20. Well this certainly cleared up everything. I have gotten more information from talking to inanimate object. Wasn’t the NH race cancelled the day this question and answer article came out. He couldn’t even share that little tidbit. Good effort but you cant get blood from a stone.

  21. Yep key word canceled not postponed………

Leave a Reply

Copyright 2018 E-Media Sports

Website Designed by Thirty Marketing