Official: NASCAR Announces Return To Thompson Speedway For Whelen Modified Tour




The Whelen Modified Tour readies for the Sunoco World Series 150 at Thompson Speedway in October 2020 (Photo: Fran Lawlor/RaceDayCT)

As first reported by RaceDayCT.com earlier today, NASCAR announced officially Tuesday that the Whelen Modified Tour will return to Thompson Speedway in 2022.

Thompson Speedway operators Cris Michaud and Tom Mayberry have scheduled an Aug. 17, 2022 event at Thompson.

Thompson Speedway was not part of the 14-race schedule for the Whelen Modified Tour in 2021. The 2021 season marked the first year since the inception of the Whelen Modified Tour in 1985 that the series did not hold an event at Thompson Speedway.

“The whole thing before, obviously we love the [Whelen Modified Tour], but the price didn’t work for us,” Michaud said. “We have come up with a sponsor that really wanted to sponsor Thompson and wanted to sponsor a NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour race. We worked together and got the pricing that with the sponsorsphip it got down to where we thought the price would work.”

Justin Bonsignore, who clinched his second consecutive Whelen Modified Tour title in September and third overall, was happy to hear of the division’s return to Thompson. Twelve of Bonsignore’s 31 career Whelen Modified Tour victories have come at Thompson Speedway.

“It was a big disappointment that it couldn’t happen this year but for them to get us back there next year – even though it’s only once – it’s a big step in the right direction for the teams, for the series, for the fans,” Bonsignore said. “I think everybody should be happy that they were at least able to put one together and hopefully it’s a good sign of things to come.”

Michaud co-owns Thunder Road International Speedbowl in Barre, Vt, White Mountain Motorsports Park in North Woodstock, N.H. and the American-Canadian Tour. Mayberry owns Oxford Plains Speedway in Oxford, Maine and the Pro All-Stars Series. Michaud and Mayberry partnered to put on two Whelen Modified Tour events at Thompson in 2020. For the 2021 season they partnered to put together six-event schedule at Thompson Speedway and introduced the Thompson Outlaw Modified division, which featured Tour Type Modified events. They lost one event of the six scheduled for 2021 due to rain. The 2021 season ended at Thompson with the running of the Sunoco World Series Oct. 8-10, which included the return of the Thompson 300, which was won by Keith Rocco. Thompson Outlaw Modified events are expected to return to the track’s schedule regularly for the 2022 season.

“I think there was a misconception before that we didn’t want NASCAR there and that was never true,” Michaud said of the 2021 season at Thompson. “We know there’s a place for NASCAR, we know there’s a place for the [Thompson Outlaw Modified] shows. I think Tom and I have proved that with the [American-Canadian Tour] and the [Pro All-Stars Series]. We run a lot of the same day shows together and there’s a place for both. I’m a firm believer in that and I think this is just goes to show that there’s a place for fans of the Open Shows and fans of the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour and I think it will work great together.”

The Whelen Modified Tour has run 148 races at Thompson Speedway since 1985, which is more than any other facility. Craig Lutz won the last Whelen Modified Tour event at Thompson on Oct. 11, 2020.

“We are looking forward to returning to Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park,” Whelen Modified Tour series director Jimmy Wilson said in a release. “Thompson has been a great track and put on some of the most memorable races over the years and we look forward to putting on more of those memorable races for our loyal Connecticut area and Thompson Speedway fans.”

Little is known beyond a few events when it comes to the 2022 schedule for the series.

NASCAR has announced the Whelen Modified Tour season opening event will be held on Feb. 12 at New Smyrna (Fla.) Speedway. New Hampshire Motor Speedway general manager and executive vice president David McGrath has confirmed the series will run in Loudon on July 16. Jennerstown (Pa). Speedway general manager Bill Hribar said a series return is expected at his track for Memorial Day weekend in 2022. Beyond that little more has been publicly revealed.

Comments

  1. Well that’s certainly a kick in the danglers for the anti NWMT Hell Hounds.

  2. Terrific news!
    Egg on my face. I predicted no tour events in conn for next year. I will man up, but I will tell you, I am very happy that I got this wrong! I know Doug, the “pin” was in my “0”. But that’s all good. Glad to be called out on it!

  3. Excellent News !! Modifieds on the HIGH BANKS there is just nothing like it !!! Thank you ACT & PASS !! You two Gentleman have SAVED Racing at THOMPSON and we couldn’t be any more PLEASED……!!! I will Guess that the SPONSOR is NAPA or SUNOCO or BUDWEISER or TRUELY or TWISTED or ???
    the AUGUST race was always the BUD 125 or BUD 150 if my memory is in gear today… !! LOL you guys
    know exactly what i Mean… Well my favorite TRACK TO SEE MODS is healthy again after being on life
    support .. Now they announced a 2022 Season the CAR COUNTS will IMPROVE because the guys and gals can plan on racing there all Winter , So that will naturally improve the CARS in the pits, This news
    made my day … BE HAPPY = HAVE FUN …..

  4. wmass01013 says

    YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    NO ANGER OR VENOIM

  5. Improve car counts! u gotta be kidding me!! the only thing that will improve car counts is MONEY!!!!!

  6. Well, this is something to look forward too.

    Thanks!!!

    On the calendar already

  7. Excellent news, circled on the calendar!

  8. NASCRAP must have gone to Thompson with their tail between their legs….is Waterford far behind?

  9. Do we have a rain date ?

  10. Walter A Fike says

    Put more money in the purse shes9 glad they are going back to Thompson but at what price to the teams

  11. wmass01013 says

    NASCRAP must have gone to Thompson with their tail between their legs….is Waterford far behind?

    AND i am full of anger and Venom?????????
    LOSER!!!!!!!!!!!!

  12. I’m worried about Suitcase Jake. That about face you did on the NWMT based on this one event I should think put you at risk of a good case of whiplash.
    Does it seem like they’re teasing the schedule builds a little more this year?. Stafford with the Sizzler announcement. The NWMT so far has dropped New Smyrna, the CUP date at the NHMS and now this. Interesting silly season isn’t it so what’s next?
    The number of Tri Track races and where? Will Stafford completely shut out the tour or not. Hope not. Is Monadnock in the mix for a NWMT date? Hope so. Riverhead may not be New England but it’s close and another three NWMT dates there would be popular wouldn’t it? Last word on Beech Ridge is that there could be racing there in 2022 so is a return there a possibility? Hope so. Then the big one. Will the NWMT or Tri Track schedule dates at the Speedbowl. The buzz now is about the catch fence but with several big announcements already in the books could that be the next shoe to fall. It really is a great track to race at with a history of big TTOMS and NWMT races but the owner still is who he is. Will one or both of the two most popular tours brave the dark cloud still hanging over the track and pull the trigger? Hope not.
    Fun time isn’t it? We can follow it all on Facebook but it’s more fun clicking on RaceDayCt and seeing what surprise Shawn’s going to lay on us next.
    It’s up on Speed51. The Haunted Hundred and at $30 a terrific bargain.

  13. Shawn, in the past, did NASCAR work directly with the tracks to set schedules? More to the point, was there always a promoter or middleman involved between the tracks and NASCAR?

  14. Looking forward to the release of the full 2022 NWMT schedule.

  15. Darealgoodfella,
    In recent years most events were negotiated directly between NASCAR and the track owner or track operator. The 2021 season was the first time in recent memory that there were multiple events put on by promoters who leased facilities specifically to put on those events.

  16. Like I said many many many times .. I LOVE the TOUR, Very Happy Thompson is back on the Schedule because It’s my favorite place to watch the MOD SQUAD on the HIGH BANKS…. No Whip lash on my opinion on the Daytona fools who have turned their backs on the MODIFIEDS and their Horrible treatment and lack of promotion and marketing for their Oldest division , I believe one of the first MEETINGS for NASCAR was held at the Thompson CLUBHOUSE on the HILL if my Memory is in the right gear with BIG BILL FRANCE in CONN…. Hopefully they wake up , bend there past IRON FIST attitude & patch some sort of Schedule together . So far NHIS , Martinsville , Thompson , … we will some in Upstate NY ,, Beech Ridge ? Seekonk ? Monadnock . ? Pennsylvania a few ? Long Island ? .. 10 to 14 races ..??? WHO Knows …. Time will Tell …

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