Management Role: Doug Coby Rolls To Second Straight Whelen Mod Tour Win In Granite State Derby At Lee

Doug Coby celebrates victory in the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Granite State Derby Saturday at Lee USA Speedway (Photo: Jim DuPont/RaceDayCT)

LEE, N.H. – Last week when Doug Coby took his first ride as a substitute driver for Tommy Baldwin Racing at the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Miller Lite 200 at Riverhead Raceway it was all about mashing the gas and managing the traffic on the quarter-mile bullring.

Saturday at Lee USA Speedway brought a different test for the six-time Whelen Modifeid Tour champion making his second appearance with the Tommy Baldwin owned team in place of regular driver Jimmy Blewett.

The .375-mile Lee USA Speedway bullring is known for grinding away rubber. The goal at Lee is actually finding the happy medium of not mashing the gas and managing tires.

For the second consecutive week Coby was up to the task perfectly in his fill-in role.

Coby, of Milford, drove away from Jon McKennedy on a green-white-checkered overtime restart to win the 175-lap Granite State Derby Saturday at Lee USA Speedway.

“I’m just happy to be racing,” Coby said. “I thought I was going to be home the last two weeks watching on FloRacing and here I am standing in victory lane two weeks in a row.”

It was sixth Whelen Modified Tour event at Lee and the first appearance at the track for the series since Ed Flemke Jr. won at the facility in 1998. The event was put on by JDV Productions.

“I can save tires too,” Coby said. “Tommy Baldwin gave me a great car for two races in a row. I set my pace out with that out front and kind of seeing what the car was doing and it was really good. We just stuck to our plan.”

Blewett had been scheduled to run for Baldwin at Riverhead and Lee, but stepped aside due to his daughter Kayla recovering from an illness. Coby, a six-time Whelen Modified Tour champion, is running part-time with the series this year. Last week’s start at Riverhead was his first with the series in 2022.

“I’ll keep racing until racing’s not fun and this fun,” Coby said. “You go with a group of guys that you don’t really know that well. Tommy and I would bullshit a little bit in the pit area from time to time, but never best friends. He never said to me ‘I’m going to put you in my car some day.’

Baldwin said he’s not sure it’s the end of the relationship between his team and Coby. Mike Christopher Jr. will run for Baldwin at the next Whelen Modified Tour event at Jennerstown (Pa.) Speedway next Saturday.

“We’ve been working our tails off all winter long to get ready for this year,” Baldwin said. “I learned a lot through some testing. And I learned a lot with Jimmy [Blewett] the end of last year that really got us on track. It’s Mike Christopher’s turn next week to see what he does. Then Jimmy is in it some. And you never know with Coby. We’re still talking about some stuff.”

Said Coby: “I like to take care of equipment and Tommy needs me to take care of the equipment here temporarily and if I’ve got to put it in victory lane then I’ve got to put it in victory lane.

“Just a great night [for this team] two weeks in a row. I don’t know, Tommy is hitting on some stuff setup wise and he’s keep the car really stable, really comfortable for a long time. When you’re racing against Matt Hirschman saving tires and you can save more than him and be on a better pit strategy than him that says a lot about Tommy’s decision making. Hats off to them and all the decisions to make the car fast.”

McKennedy, of Chelmsford, Mass., was second and Matt Hirschman of Northampton, Pa. third.

Jake Johnson, making his second series start, won the pole with Hirschman qualifying second and Coby third.

Hirschman went to the lead on the first lap and set the pace over the first third of the race. Caution flew on lap 60 Coby in second and Johnson third.

Johnson won the race off pit road with Hirschman coming out second and Eric Goodale third. Coby fell to fifth. On the ensuing restart Hirschman went right back to the front over Johnson.

When caution flew on  lap 98 Hirschman was part of a select group of drivers that pitted with Coby and Johnson staying out and Coby assuming the lead. By lap 146 JB Fortin had found his way to second place and was closing quickly on Coby before caution flew for Justin Bonsignore’s spin on the backstretch.

The majority of the field pitted again on lap 151 with Tommy Catalano winning the race off pit road. Coby restarted second, Hirschman third, Fortin fourth and McKennedy fifth.

With spotter Shawn Waddell in his ear, Coby made quick work of Catalano on the restart with McKennedy moving to third. McKennedy was up to second when caution flew for Goodale spinning in turn three after contact with Johnson.

It was the second consecutive week that Coby saw a caution fly with under two laps remaining while leading.

“I was like ‘What the [expletive] is going on, again?’” Coby said. “My dad was all bent out of shape from Riverhead still. … These guys, I hate to say it, but with one to go, wherever you’re running, unless you’re contending for a top-three or a top-five, you really should be able to keep the car under you.”

Coby was able to go unchallenged by McKennedy on the green-white-checkered restart to finish the race.

 “We had an opportunity on that restart next to Doug,” McKennedy said. “Obviously you never give up, but we were just a little too pushy all day and never seemed to make that better. We had that most of the race. We had a good run, but [Coby] was just able to roll the corner a little bit better and that was the difference.”

Ron Silk of Norwalk, and Johnson, of Rehoboth, Mass., rounded out the top five respectively.


  1. NH MOD CHASER says

    Batman and Robin the dynamic duo like to see them run the whole tour and go for number ,7

  2. 19 cars???? Oh well.

    Somebody has been dining on humble pie, or took extra Dale Carnegie courses, or heard from sponsors.

    The 7NY was a very good car today. Baldwin Jr. is doing a much better job at bringing properly tuned cars that last. About time.

    The abrasive surface seems to have been a great equalizer. Perhaps too equal for some, or many.

    The 3 was awesome, I thought it was going to win.

    Many cars were good today, they came and went with laps and tires.

    Shocking that Hirschman had less than expected performance… hope he keeps it together. Led a bunch of laps.

    Sure would like to see Silk run in front for once, and for a while. But he is #1 in points for now. Steady.

  3. “There were maybe 200 people there tonight and I still got boo’d and called a (effing) cheater by some drunk clown when I got to victory lane. You wanna know what make racing run? That makes racing fun.”

    That’s Doug Coby on Twitter after his big Riverhead win. He also complained about the late race caution thrown for smoke. Why? Get’s a huge win and his first inclination is to go on social media and complain.
    Fast forward to last night he wins again. As a fan of the post race interview his comments after exiting the car were near perfect in my view. It can’t be easy after the race with all the adrenalin pumping to find the right words but Coby did as he does so often. If he’d let those words be the ones people remember instead of the Twitter complaints perhaps he wouldn’t have drunks or anyone else giving him the business after a big win.
    Coby will get the buzz after two wins that harken back to his championship days but lets not forget the bigger picture which is Tommy Baldwin Racing. In 2022, with a couple exceptions the 7ny has been consistently fast everywhere it’s raced and with whomever was driving. I suppose everyone will want to see Coby racing the car again but the rotating drivers has been fun to watch as well. Baldwin credits Blewett for helping to get the car to the place it is now. It would be very disappointing if Coby were to bump Blewett’s seat time for any reason.
    McKennedy and Hirschman have a good race but were in full pout in victory lane as am I. Unless NASCAR is hiding it somewhere really hard to find I haven’t been able to access live timing for the last two events. It’s kind of a standard that has been set isn’t it? Yet for some reason NASCAR isn’t providing something we can get for the Street Stocks at just about any track on a typical weekend. What am I missing here?
    Well done Josh Vanada and JDV Productions. The race had a big time vibe and delivered with an exciting race. Jake Johnson delivered heartbreak to Goodale, Silk ran a steady, heady race as usual now leading the points, Fortin was exceeding expectation until he wasn’t, McKennedy mired deep in the field made his way to the front at just the right time, Rameau was all over the place and Hirschman had to rally as well after a pit stop.
    Big names, good crowd, top notch announcing and video production, great weather and racing drama. Doesn’t get much better then that.

  4. PICK-EM RESULTS(Doug) says

    Lee USA, NWMT 5/21/2022

    Big City..60-7ny-51-07(?)-06-16>3+1+10+(20)+12+4=30

    On the Podium
    Fast Eddie-15
    Lapped traffic-16
    Suitcase Jake-19

    Remainder of the field
    Doug, csg, Viva race fan, Bobf & Earl-20
    Big City-30

    Accumulated Point Standings

    Lapped Traffic (1) 16=16
    Earl(3)….(22+44+20) = 29
    Big City(1) ( 30)=30
    KenL (2)…(32+32)=32
    Rob p(1)…(32)=32
    getserious(4)..(17+47+55+28)= 37
    Viva race fan (2)… (75+20)=48

    Minimum 5 entries to qualify for the championship
    If you don’t want to be scored for the championship just say so and you’ll be removed.

  5. There was so much magic going on I thought it was a Harry Potter event.

  6. Just a fan says

    Shawn, any kind of an entry list yet for Claremont?

  7. Just A Fan,
    Nothing that I’ve seen.

  8. Hillary 2024 says

    19 cars? Pa thet tic. Why in the world was the race during the day? Was rain coming?

  9. getserious says

    Congrats to Fast Eddie, perfect score of 15. You can’t get better than that.

  10. Suitcase Jake says

    Jake Johnson would have had a SHOT at the WIN….. BUT the CAR FELL OFF THE JACK 2 or 3 Times on the LAST PIT STOP … you can watch it on the RACE REPLAY … Boy that is SO HARD to WATCH as a PIT CREW GUY… That’s why you NEED mistake free pit stops at THIS LEVEL… I am sure the JACKMAN was a Volunteer and feels Horrible about it. … It is quite dangerous for the TIRE changers as the car dropped suddenly off the jack . I always reminded my Tire Changers not to put any Body Parts under the car at any time because the jack could fail or FALL OFF the jack at any Time …Just one observation noted on the Video … Boy that Doug Coby can wheel a Race Car..Those Restarts were TEXT BOOK….. Can they WIN 3 in a ROW..!!!!! Baldwin has hit on SOMETHING and the rest are playing Catch up … Kinda Like when Steve Park was Winning everything with Baldwin as Crew Chief… Before they packed their Bags for the BIG SHOW down South…..A few years back with the Modifieds and BOOM back to Winning and Winning BIG… Competition is Strong on the TOUR and to Dominate like that is quite Impressive to say the Least… They will Stay Hot i Believe….

  11. wmass01013 says

    0 | Les Hinckley | Windsor Locks, CT
    04 | Joey Jarvis | Ascutney, VT
    06 | Sam Rameau | Westminster, MA
    1 | Cory Plummer | Swanzey, NH
    3 | Jeff Murray | Claremont, NH
    3 | Matt Galko | Moodus, CT
    6 | Woody Pitkat | Bellingham, MA
    7MA | Kurt Vigeant | Oxford, MA
    8 | Earl Paulus | Palmerton, PA
    10 | Doug Doby | Marion, CT
    17 | Donnie Lashua | Canaan, NH
    20 | Max Zachem | Preston, CT
    24 | Justin Brown | Manorville, NY
    24 | Todd Patnode | Swanzey, NH
    25 | Brian Robie | Sunapee, NH
    27 | Derek Robbie | Bellingham, MA
    28 | Dwight Jarvis | Ascutney, VT
    44 | Anthony Sesely, Matawan, NJ
    47 | Jacob Perry | Pawcatuck, CT
    50 | Carl Medeiros Jr. | Westport, MA
    50 | Dan Wesson | Monson, MA
    50K | Matthew Kimball | Bennington, NH
    55 | Ryan Doucette | Framingham, MA
    60 | Matt Hirschman | Northampton, PA
    66 | Austin Kochenash | Danielsville, PA
    76 | Kirk Alexander | West Swanzey, NH
    88 | Roger Turbash | Riverhead, NY

  12. Hillary 2024,
    Race was scheduled for 7 pm. It was moved to a 6:35 green flag because the show was ahead of schedule.

  13. Actually if you pick the winner the best possible score is 14.
    That said no doubt in the early going of the revised scoring system Fast Eddie is the guy to beat with two wins and 3 podiums. csg and getserious are the other two winners. Most successful non winner would be Suitcase Jake with three podiums.

  14. Well suitcase, now what?
    No question that something has changed for the 7NY team this year, starting with New Smyrna.
    Obviously, Jimmy brought family sponsorship to help get him in the seat. Christopher did well, coby rocks the house in 2 starts. This is the type of performance that many of us thought that 7NY should have had right along with McKennedy. While no reflection on McKennedy, something has changed for the better with the 7NY program. Now what? This should be interesting, to see how their season shakes out. Baldwin may have to make some tough calls here, as the season progresses. Great stuff. Just glad to see that 7NY up front again.

  15. I know there was 24 cars registered for this race. The 07 of Emerling was a no show, does anyone know the other cars that were expected but didnt make the show? This was an 11 tire race, anyone think that may have had something to do with the low car count? I know Lee is tough on tires but that is an expansive tire bill at 190 to 200 dollars a tire.

    It was nice to see Ole Blue up front and fast time. Does Baldwin have a second car, perhaps Doug and him and pool some of their resources in team members and race two cars when Blewitt comes back

    Doug thnks again for taking the time and running the pick 6 for us. I appreciate it.

  16. Fast Eddie says

    Serious, thanks for the comment. This is getting scary, almost looks like I know what I’m doing! Now if only the sports book recognized Modified racing… Doug, thanks for keeping score for us!

  17. wmass01013 says

    no shows
    07 Emerling
    2 Bertuccio
    18 Heagy
    29 Spencer Davis
    92 Nocella

  18. thanks for the list of no shows WMASS. Is that list posted prior for the Tri Track race at Thunder Road next weekend?

  19. Suitcase Jake says

    Bobf . I am Thinking they go with THE HOT HAND & SHOE…. Coby …. Last I knew Baldwin had 3 Tour Type Mods.. Then a CO build with PSR & that made 4 in the Stable.. But don’t quote me on that….. They may have hit on something with the PSR deal and transferred that Info to the other set ups….You may be looking at a Blewett & Coby duo of 2 cars coming to the next Tour Race with Coby supplying His # 10 Crew to service Coby when He comes pit side…. I think they will work something out so Coby can at least have a SHOT at 3 IN A ROW…. That’s my thinking on this deal…. Winning is the best deodorant ever invented and Winning Speaks Very Loudly in this ULTRA competitive Sport…..

  20. wmass01013 says

    Sorry csg fir not being specific
    Claremont May 27th

  21. Paraphrasing Tommy Baldwin on Unmuffled. Friday at Claremont, Saturday at Jennerstown and working on Thunder Road perhaps on Sunday if logistics can be worked out. The two car idea is intriguing but there seems to be plenty of seat time up for grabs if the 7ny can make all three events.
    Checked the replay of the jack incident with the 3 at LEE and the poor guy did drop it twice. Maybe it was an jack pad failure. I counted about 7 seconds lost. Definitely a huge missed opportunity BRE will not soon forget. Don’t think the tire changers were at risk It happened so fast but I’ll bet they had some bruises appearing the next day.
    Scheduling events may be more art then science but the schedulers might as well have put a gun to their heads when they came up with Memorial Day Weekend. Metaphorically speaking of course. Racing Guys on Friday at Claremont with the Stafford tour mod cars not in play the drivers likely racing for points in the SK’s. Saturday way over in Jennerstown with the NWMT, JDV Productions event. Sunday way up to Thunder Road for a MMTTS race. Fuel, tires an issue, long drives and spreading the tour modified population very thin. Race quality top notch so far but car counts showing the affects of increased costs and supply issues.
    Next week only the MRS at White Mountain.
    At the very least it will be interesting to see who prioritizes what all complicated by the potential for weather to be a factor in some places and not others.

  22. Just a fan says

    Thanks for the entry list WMASS, did you mean the 06 for Hinckley?

  23. Love it suitcase!
    More competition with quality rides. Great stuff if it in fact happens! Points might be wide open if jbon stays snake bit here….

  24. James Schaeffer published the entry list on May 6 on his Facebook page. He showed Hinckley as the 0.

  25. Fast Eddie says

    A small add-on to doug’s schedule. Monday is mr. Dirt at lebanon valley. Next weekend is the nhra national event at new england dragway.

  26. If anyone wants to do a Pick-em let me know I have all three queued up.
    Perhaps we’re all a little down because of the event in Texas. They’re all horrific but this one more so seeing as how it resembled Sandy Hook.
    It’s fruitless to offer an opinion. All the reactions are all in the media, all so predictable and familiar. I don’t know about you but all I’m left with are feelings of resignation and powerlessness.
    Memorial Day is a day of remembrance. Unfortunately we’ll have a more to remember this weekend.

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