Home Boy: Doug Coby Excited To Play Big Stage In Inaugural SRX Series Event At Stafford

Doug Coby (Photo: Adam Glanzman/NASCAR)

For more than two decades, across multiple divisions, Doug Coby has faced off with – and beaten – the best competition that thrown at him at Stafford Speedway. 

The 41-year old Coby won a Late Model championship at the track in 1998, a Pro Stock division title in 2000 and he has five SK Modified wins at the historic half-mile oval. He also has 12 victories and 26 top-five finishes in 58 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour starts at Stafford. 

On June 12 the six-time Whelen Modified Tour champion will get the opportunity to defend his home turf against a lineup that literally represents some of the greatest motorsports competitors from across the globe. 

It was announced Friday that Coby will get the chance to compete in the inaugural Superstars Racing Experience event at Stafford on June 12. 

The SRX Series is the brainchild of legendary NASCAR championship-winning crew chief Ray Evernham and legendary NASCAR championship-winning driver Tony Stewart. 

Coby, who competes full-time on the Whelen Modified Tour, said he reached out to Evernham and offered his help in promoting the series not long after the endeavor was announced last July. 

It was announced in early January that the series would open at Stafford on June 12. It was a date that coincided with a Whelen Modified Tour event at Oswego (N.Y.) Speedway. Coby said he was quick to make sure Evernham knew he would be available to race at Stafford. 

“I did make it clear to him that when he started to say my name … to potentially run Stafford, I texted him one day and just said ‘Just so you know, I don’t want somebody to say to you that Doug has a Tour race at Oswego that night so maybe he wouldn’t be available.’ I wanted to let him know that if it came down to it I would be interested.”

Not long after Evernham reached out with the offer to Coby to race at Stafford.

“I got a text from Ray and it just said ‘Can we talk about SRX?’ I was like, “Ahh, yeah.’ So we just chatted and he said they wanted me to run the Stafford show and asked if I wanted to be a part of it and of course I told him absolutely. 

“As far as making the decision, I hate to say it but it was a no-brainer to accept the invite. Obviously they’ve got a lot of hype for the series with what Ray and Tony and everybody involved with SRX are putting together. In this day and age it’s kind of rare to get a phone call from somebody saying ‘Hey, we like what you’ve done and we want you to be included in this.’ I’m certainly not expecting that from anywhere else. For me it would be no different than if I got a phone call from Tony to go run an Xfinity [Series] race that day. It would get done. That’s kind of the way I looked at it from the beginning.” 

The Oswego Whelen Modified Tour event is the fifth of 14 on the division’s schedule in 2021. Coby, who is in his second season as an owner/driver with the series, said his Doug Coby Racing team will be competing at Oswego without him. 

“I’m not going but the team will be there,” said Coby, who finished sixth in the Whelen Modified Tour season opening event Thursday at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway. “We’re going to choose a driver to fill in for me. With the Tour’s point structure, owner’s points is what really pays the point fund so it’s really important for my team to go there. My team’s commitment to [primary sponsor Mayhew Tools] is to run the 14 Tour races, so my car will certainly be at Oswego for that race. We have some chatting to do amongst the team just to figure out who is the best fit [to drive].” 

Coby said he isn’t giving up on the idea of winning a seventh driver’s championship with the series despite knowing he’ll be skipping an event.  

“Crazier things have happened,” Coby said. “We’ve been able to be really consistent with the Tour finishes. Even when you win the championship you kind of can have one bad race. You just hope that some of the other contenders have a bad race or two and if we can get through the rest of the other 13 races unscathed it’s not out of reach. But I think at this point an owner’s championship is kind of what we would be targeting.” 

The SRX Series will feature drivers competing in equally prepared Evernham designed stock cars in six events that will be broadcast live on CBS. 

In addition to the opening event at Stafford the series will visit Knoxville (Iowa) Raceway (June 19), Eldora Speedway in New Weston, Ohio (June 26), Lucas Oil Raceway in Clermont, Ind. (July 3), Slinger (Wisconsin) Speedway (July 10) and the Nashville (Tennessee) Fairgrounds Speedway (July 17).

Thus far the driver lineup announced for the series includes Stewart, Tony Kanaan, Helio Castroneves, Bill Elliott, Bobby Labonte, Paul Tracy, Mark Webber, Michael Waltrip, Willy T. Ribbs, Marco Andretti and Ernie Francis Jr. 

Coby was one of four “amateur” drivers announced Friday to run in selected events. 

Former Whelen Modified Tour champion and USAC racing standout Bobby Santos III will compete in the series event at Lucas Oil Raceway

“Bobby and I grew up racing together at Silver City [Quarter Midget track] in Meriden,” Coby said. “So you’ve got two Quarter Midget drivers that are really Connecticut based getting the opportunity. That’s pretty cool.”

Four-time Knoxville Speedway track champion Brian Brown will compete in the event at Knoxville. Five-time USAC Silver Crown champion Kody Swanson will be part of the field at Eldora Speedway. 

Coby will get his first opportunity to get behind the wheel of the SRX Series car during testing on June 11 at Stafford. 

“I’m sure I’ll get a lot of laps to kind of dial it in,” Coby said. “Of course all the other guys will get a lot of laps too. But it’s pretty cool that we’re going to Stafford for the first time. Nobody knows what to expect. We don’t know how the cars are going to race. We don’t know who is going to adapt and who’s not. I think it’s a pretty level playing field going into the first race. … People forget that I ran the full-bodied stuff there and that’s how I got up to the Modifieds.” 

Check out recent Unmuffled podcast episodes with SRX Series competitors Willy T. Ribbs and Bobby Labonte


  1. Keep him away from the microphones.

  2. A megalomaniacal narcissists dream to be in two races at the same time.

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