Baldwin, Evans & Jarzombeck 77 To Kick Off 2023 Ted Christopher Crown Jewel Series At Riverhead

(Press Release from Riverhead Raceway)

Three of the most successful and iconic drivers, Tom Baldwin, Richie Evans & Charlie Jarzombek to ever strap into an asphalt Modified, will be celebrated Saturday during the annual Baldwin, Evans & Jarzombek 77 at Riverhead Raceway. The event starts the six race 2023 Crown Jewel Series for the Tour Type NASCAR Modifieds of the Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series with the series winner being presented with the Ted Christopher Cup.  Saturday prior to the Baldwin, Evans & Jarzombek program Chuck Steuer and Keith Gordon will be enshrined on the Cromarty Wall of Champions. 

In what could turn out to be an ironic twist, Tom Rogers Jr. of Riverhead, a past winner of more than one 77 could tie “Charging” Charlie Jarzombek at the top of the all-time Riverhead Modified win list at 63 if he prevails Saturday night. Rogers & Jarzombek along with Wayne Anderson and Don Howe are the only five-time Modified champions at Riverhead. For years “Charging” Charlie was dubbed the leader of the Long Island Gang and the debate as to whether he or Rogers is the better driver of their generation or overall is sure to ramp up. Jarzombek, who grew up around the corner from Riverhead Raceway, won his first of 63 races on July 20th,1963 while his final win came on September 1st,1978. Rogers made his first trip to the Modified winners circle May 8th,2004 and won his most recent race on May 27th. 

“Tiger” Tom Baldwin dialed up 11 career Riverhead Raceway wins during his career while racing mainly off the Island with the NASCAR WMT since 1985. After Jarzombek’s passing in 1987, Tom became the leader of the Long Island gang, as well for owners & drivers on the WMT. Never afraid to let you know where he stood, Tom’s passion was NASCAR Modified racing and the people in it. NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee Richie Evans may have only won once at Riverhead Raceway in August of 1985, but his vast success at Islip Speedway where he won 18-times and two Freeport Stadium victories earned him popularity on the Island. Anytime the “Big Orange” hauler of the nine time NASCAR Modified champion Evans rolled into one of the three tracks on Long Island, fans knew business was about to pick-up.

Kyle Soper of Manorville in route to his fourth Riverhead championship last year won the Baldwin, Evans & Jarzombek 77 as well the Ted Christopher Cup as the Crown Jewel Series champion. Soper has stepped away from weekly racing in 2023 to focus on work and his wedding leaving the list of possible winners of the 2023 Baldwin, Evans & Jarzombek 77 wide open. With five weekly races in the books for the NASCAR Modifieds in ’23 at Riverhead there has yet to be a repeat winner. Timmy Solomito of Islip won on opening nights and was followed by Jack Handley Jr. of Medford, Tom Rogers Jr., Chris Young of Calverton and most recently Chris Rogers of Patchogue to victory lane. While Solomito has not disclosed his plans for the 77, the quartet of drivers who won since Timmy are focusing in on a second win. 

Among the weekly Riverhead talents who’d love to score their first win of the season in the 77 include Dylan Slepian of Dix Hills, Dave Brigati of Calverton, Matt Brode of East Islip, John Beatty Jr. of Merrick, Michael Rutkoski of Mattituck, Kyle Ellwood of Riverhead, JR Bertuccio of Centereach, Chris Turbush of Wading River, Howie Brode of East Islip and Owen Grennan of Glen Cove. 

2022 Crown Jewel Series champion and Islip 300 winner JB Fortin of Holtsville has all intentions of being part of the 77 Saturday as does 2023 Sunoco Race Fuel NASCAR WMT Rookie of the Year contender Justin Brown of Manorville confirming Monday that he’ll be on hand with his family car. With his father Chuck inducted onto the Cromarty Wall of Champions Saturday, Dillon Steuer of Bohemia who is running Riverhead part time is expected to race the Baldwin, Evans & Jarzombek 77. 

The remainder of the 2023 Crown Jewel Series races will unfold July 1st during the 73rd Year Celebration “Flying Dutchman” Tribute, July 29th, with a 115-lap event honoring Wayne Anderson, The Bubba 150 on August 19th, the September 23rd Cecil Palm Tree 160 with the Islip 300 closing out the series on Saturday November 11th.

Joining the Baldwin, Evans & Jarzombek 77 Saturday are the Eagle Auto Mall Crate Modifieds, INEX Legend Race Cars, Eddie Partridge Vintage All Stars and an 8-Cylinder Gut & Go Enduro. 

Qualifying is set for 5:30 pm, opening ceremonies including the 2023 Cromarty Wall of Champions induction of Keith Gordon and Chuck Steuer are set for 6:30 pm. Spectator gates open at 4:00 pm, adult general admission is $30, kids 6-12 $15 with 5 & under free. 

The 2023 race and event schedule can be viewed at, e-mails reach the track at [email protected] while the phone number remains 631-842-RACE. 


  1. Hope they leave the spray bottle in the shed the next few weeks. They havent done the racing product any favors.

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