By Souza Media
MARTINSVILLE, Va. – After 16 races across seven different states on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour in 2022, Tommy Baldwin Racing officially celebrated the owners championship on Thursday night at Martinsville Speedway.
Driving the No. 7NY, Jimmy “Showtime” Blewett celebrated with the team post-race, after coming close to Victory Lane in the 200-lap race – contending for the lead in the final laps before being swept up in a wreck.
After years of trying, Baldwin finally sealed a championship on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour this season. And above all, he appreciates every single person who helped him get to this point – not only this season – but throughout his entire, and extensive, career in the sport.
Baldwin has been just about everywhere from the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour to the NASCAR Cup Series and in between, but has found his bread and butter back in the Modifieds in the last few years, where he feels at home. The Modified community includes a group of dedicated crew members and drivers, many of which have a deep history in the grassroots style of racing.
Baldwin is no different. From the early years working with his dad and learning everything he uses now to his advantage, he’s encountered some of the most genuine people in the garage area.
With five feature wins and three different drivers sitting behind the wheel of the No. 7NY during the 2022 Whelen Modified Tour season, it was everything Baldwin and his family could have imagined.
It was what Baldwin would call a dream year – and one that did exactly what he’s been banking on for his entire career – cemented the Baldwin name as champion, added to the already impressive resume, and cemented the No. 7NY as one of the top car numbers in series history.
People won’t forget the 2022 season.
“It’s been a long time coming,” Baldwin said. “My dad spent his whole life racing in the NASCAR Modifieds and to win the title with the No. 7NY, it’s cool to cement the legacy of our Baldwin name and this car number forever. I’ve always said you have to win a championship to cement everything and we did that this year with three different drivers. Even when we didn’t win, we were running up front. The team behind me, they all worked their butts off. To get the championship and lock it up a race early, it showed how tough we were all year.”
From his father, and now living on through his sons, Baldwin has spent a ton of time at the race track, where he truly feels is home. He lives and breathes the sport. And so many people do it right alongside him.
“It truly takes an army to be successful,” Baldwin said. “From the beginning, to know that so many people have touched our cars now and the cars my dad worked on and everything in between, it’s been a great ride. I want to thank everyone who has been involved with the success of the Baldwin’s. All of the guys and girls that came to the shop from the early 1970s to present, they’ve all had a piece and a part of our success. It’s not only about what we accomplished this year – but for the last 50 years.”
This year, with three different drivers, Baldwin dominated the Whelen Modified Tour. Headlined by five wins, the team included the likes of Jimmy Blewett, six-time series champion Doug Coby and rising star Mike Christopher Jr.
Highlights include Coby winning back-to-back races in his first two trips behind the wheel, Christopher Jr. winning his first career Whelen Modified Tour race in his third career start, and Blewett capturing a home track at Wall Stadium Speedway. The team looked up the owner’s championship after the event at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park, one whole race early.
Baldwin’s team becomes the first since 2017 to win the owner’s championship without their driver also winning the driver’s title. With three different drivers, Baldwin decided early in the season he would chase the owner's title. Jon McKennedy, a driver inside the Tommy Baldwin Racing stable from 2018-2021, won the driver’s championship for the 2022 season.
“You put this together with three different drivers, with five wins during the season,” Jimmy Wilson, Director of the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, said during the title presentation. “This is really, really cool. To have your owner’s championship, cementing the Baldwin name into the record books as a champion… it’s special. On behalf of the France family and everyone at NASCAR, we’re very proud to have you as our owner’s champion this season. I can only imagine your dad is smiling from above.”
“Winning the title… it’s for all the people that have gone to war with our family,” Baldwin said.
To celebrate on the frontstretch at Martinsville, Baldwin unloaded a piece of Modified history – one of his dad’s former cars – with the No. 7NY on the side of the historic Modified coupe. It added yet another element to an incredible season and created a photo opportunity of a lifetime.
“It’s even more special to have this car here for the celebration,” Baldwin said. “For me, it’s about having it here to showcase our history and how we made it to this point. There have been so many people that have helped my family get here all the way from the beginning through now, in all different types of divisions. But to come back into the Modifieds and chase this title… we had one hell of a year and it’s great to celebrate it all at Martinsville, a place that is so deep in Modified history.”
In the 16 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour events, the team finished inside the top-10 in all but two races, and combined, drivers led 543 laps.
“We were fast right off the trailer as usual with Tommy and his guys,” Blewett said at Martinsville post-race. “Our main goal was accomplished today with all of the hard work and dedication the team has put in all year to win the championship. Tommy gave me the opportunity to be his driver and I feel to be a leader of the team. Mike Jr. is one heck of a wheelman and Doug’s resume speaks for itself. It’s a good deal.”
Overall, it’s the third title of the year for the Tommy Baldwin Racing team – adding to the SMART Tour triumph with driver Caleb Heady down south – and the World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing championship from February at New Smyrna Speedway.
Tommy Baldwin Racing will return to the track – for another race – for the North-South Shootout – with three cars at Caraway Speedway on Saturday, November 5. Blewett, Coby and Heady will all drive for the team in the special event.
For more information on Tommy Baldwin Racing, visit the team on Facebook.
By Souza Media
After a successful season with Tommy Baldwin Racing winning the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour owners championship, the team will officially celebrate the crown this Thursday, October 27 at Martinsville Speedway. In the chase for the Grandfather Clock trophy on a special night for the entire team in Virginia, Tommy Baldwin Jr. has tabbed Jimmy Blewett to drive the No. 7NY in the season-finale.
Blewett drove the car to success already this season – winning the World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing championship at New Smyrna Speedway in February, and also capturing a victory on the Whelen Modified Tour at Wall Stadium Speedway in July. Blewett and Baldwin are no strangers to working together, and are close friends away from racing on the track.
The team will officially be presented with the championship trophy post-race, after Blewett, Doug Coby and Mike Christopher Jr. split the ride this season. On the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour alone, the team has five wins in the first 15 races – with Coby capturing three and Christopher and Blewett one each.
The Tommy Baldwin Racing team also just celebrated a championship on the SMART Modified Tour with driver Caleb Heady last weekend.
“It’s only fitting to have Jimmy drive the car for the final race of the season,” Baldwin said. “It’s going to be an exciting night down there with the celebration that will happen after the race, but we want to make sure we seal up another win before it’s over. We want to go out with a bang. Jimmy is a proven winner and there aren’t many drivers out there I trust as much as him. With everything he’s had to deal with throughout his racing career, and the ride we’ve been on, winning together in the 7NY at Martinsville on this special night would make it even more memorable.”
Blewett is no stranger to winning at Martinsville Speedway. In 2006, he won the inaugural Whelen Modified Tour race at the Paperclip, driving for the late Ed Partridge. And even though since then he’s failed to finish in his last three starts there, Blewett’s always had speed. He’s looking forward to getting back behind the wheel of the car and also prepared to get Baldwin his wish in Victory Lane.
“We’re really excited to get to Martinsville because Tommy’s goal was accomplished as the owners champion and we can go into the race without that pressure as a team,” Blewett said. “Knowing you are going there with the best team going right now, it’s an incredible feeling. These guys have been on top of their game all year. They make guys like my teammates and I shine and with that said, it’s no pressure – just go for the win for us. Hopefully we can do just that. It would be nice to get the boss man that Grandfather Clock.”
Thursday’s action at Martinsville Speedway includes one practice session from 3-4 p.m., followed by Mayhew Tools pole qualifying at 5 p.m. The final race of the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour season will take the green flag at 8 p.m., live on FloRacing.TV.
For more information on Tommy Baldwin Racing, follow the team on Facebook for the latest updates.
By Souza Media
Tommy Baldwin Racing locked up their third championship of the season on Saturday night at Motor Mile Speedway, as Caleb Heady and the team celebrated a title on the SMART Modified Tour. Although a mechanical failure sidelined the No. 7NY on lap 10 of the race, the team was enough points ahead due to a consistent season down south to still lock up the title.
Heady – who made the move full-time to Tour-Type Modifieds this year after many successful seasons in Legends Cars – picked up a victory early in the season, then rode momentum with consistency through the summer on the SMART Tour.
The title was the third of the season for Tommy Baldwin Racing – also winning the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour owner’s championship, and the New Smyrna Speedway World Series of Asphalt title back in February.
It’s been a dream year for the team and it isn’t over yet.
“To get everyone together and do what we did this year, I don’t even know what to say,” Baldwin said. “Three championships, four different drivers. I love the SMART Modified Tour and the tracks we race on. I’m so proud of everyone that has helped me get here today. To win all of these titles and all of the races with these guys behind me, it’s awesome.”
Baldwin is used to working with a variety of different style drivers, especially this year. On the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, he worked with three different drivers, each of different experience levels. Six-time series champion Doug Coby, multiple-time Wall Stadium Speedway champion Jimmy Blewett and rising star Mike Christopher Jr. wheeled for him on the Tour. On the SMART Tour, it was Heady – who is new to Modifieds – but caught on quickly.
Working with young blood is nothing Baldwin wasn’t prepared for.
“I’ve worked with young drivers my whole life – dealing with drivers like Kasey Kahne in the NASCAR Cup Series down through Caleb and my sons – you have to let them grow and watch them grow and help them get there,” Baldwin said. “It’s been so much fun this year dealing with all of the different drivers and different attitudes. Caleb has been great to work with.”
Heady jumped from the car at Motor Mile, elated with the championship trophy on the SMART Modified Tour, even after a difficult day at a track where he felt confident. To race in a growing Southern Modified division like the SMART Series against the likes of NASCAR Hall of Famer Bobby Labonte, southern modified great Burt Myers, and others, winning the title is a massive accomplishment.
“Man this is crazy,” Heady said. “This is our first full year trying in the Modifieds and to win the championship, it’s special. To be able to not even finish the last race and still win the championship, because we were so far ahead, it’s incredible.”
“Going into the race we knew we were in a good spot,” Heady continued. “But the second we broke, I was nervous. The nerves were high but it’s over now and we did it. The car is just bad fast everywhere we go. If we lose a race, it comes down to whoever is in the driver's seat. I can’t thank Tommy and the team enough for helping me along the way… at the end of the day, we’re champions. We got it!”
Tommy Baldwin Racing will return to the track for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour season-finale at Martinsville Speedway on Thursday, October 27. The team will officially be crowned the champions for the series owner's title.
For more information on Tommy Baldwin Racing, visit the team on Facebook for the latest updates.
Heady Looks To Lock Up Third Championship of the Season For TBR at Motor Mile Speedway
By Souza Media
Fresh off a top-five finish with the SMART Modified Tour at Tri-County Speedway last weekend, Tommy Baldwin Racing and driver Caleb Heady are set to race for the championship this Saturday. As the series heads to Motor Mile Speedway – a place both Heady and Baldwin Racing feel confident about – Heady leads by 37 points over NASCAR Hall of Famer Bobby Labonte, and 44 over Brandon Ward.
All three drivers are part of the “SMART 3” that are in contention to win the title in the season-finale. In order to lock up the title, Heady will need to put together a solid night in Virginia behind the wheel of the No. 7NY. He enters the race with a comfortable enough margin to feel confident about locking it up.
Not only would this be Heady’s first Modified championship, but the young rising star would also help Tommy Baldwin Racing grab their third title of the 2022 season – as the team also recently locked up the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour owner’s championship with three different drivers over the 16-race schedule. In February, Tommy Baldwin Racing won the New Smyrna Speedway World Series of Asphalt crown with Jimmy Blewett driving.
“We’re excited for Motor Mile,” Tommy Baldwin Jr. said. “We should have won there last year until a late restart, but Caleb knows the track and we should have a strong car on Saturday night that will put us in contention. It’s been a consistent year for us with the SMART Modified Tour and we would like nothing more than to seal up the championship to add to our record year – continuing to cement the legacy of the 7NY.”
Saturday’s 99-lap race is part of a full night at Motor Mile, which also includes the Sportsman and Super Streets (double features), as the track will also crown champions in those divisions.
Heady knows the number one goal on Saturday is to complete the race and lock up the title, but he wants to end the season with a bang on top in Victory Lane. Much like Heady, Baldwin is confident heading back to Motor Mile.
“I’m extremely excited to get back to Motor Mile this weekend,” Heady said. “We had a good result there last year. Motor Mile is definitely a track that I’ve looked forward to going back to since the beginning of the season, looking to get that redemption and park in Victory Lane. I have a lot of confidence there. I’m ready to go out and give Tommy and his entire team another title. They deserve it.”
Saturday’s racing action at Motor Mile Speedway begins at 5 p.m. local time. The SMART Modified Tour feature will air live on FloRacing.TV for those who would like to watch the action. All information regarding the SMART Modified Tour can be found online at SmartModTour.com.
For more information on Tommy Baldwin Racing, visit Tommy Baldwin Racing on Facebook for the latest updates.
By Souza Media
THOMPSON, Conn. – After 150 laps of nearly non-stop action Sunday at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park, Tommy Baldwin Racing was celebrating. With a second-place finish by Mike Christopher Jr. in the No. 7NY, Baldwin’s team unofficially clinched the series owner’s championship with still one race left on the schedule.
With three different drivers behind the wheel this season – Jimmy Blewett, Doug Coby and Mike Christopher Jr. – Baldwin’s team rocketed to five wins and countless top-five finishes in the first 15 races of the Whelen Modified Tour season. The consistent runs at the front of the field on the Tour, along with momentum from victories in multiple Open Modified events, was enough to seal the crown unofficially heading to the season-finale.
To compete on the Whelen Modified Tour, the team begins their journey to each event from their shop in North Carolina, meaning nearly all trips to the races are over 10 hours.
“It’s been a lot of hard work to get to this point,” Tommy Baldwin Jr. said. “To me, this is about cementing the No. 7NY and the legacy this number has in Modified racing. To do it with three different drivers – very different drivers – it’s really special. Jimmy may have driven this car the least of the three, but he’s been so beneficial to the success, not only just driving, but helping with the setup. Doug is a six-time champion and a great driver and Mike jumped in with limited Whelen Modified Tour experience and pulled off a great string of success.”
The team started the season with Christopher Jr. driving in the Whelen Modified Tour event at New Smyrna Speedway. During that same week, Baldwin’s racing team celebrated a championship at New Smyrna Speedway with Blewett driving, scoring the most points during the World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing.
Back on the Whelen Modified Tour circuit, Blewett drove to a seventh-place finish at Richmond Raceway, followed by Coby capturing two straight wins at Lee USA Speedway and Riverhead Raceway. For the third straight win, Christopher got back in the car and scored his first career checkered flag at Jennerstown Speedway. Following Coby’s fifth at Monadnock Speedway and 10th at Riverhead Raceway, Blewett got to Victory Lane at Wall Stadium Speedway, capturing the flag at his home track.
Up next, Coby finished seventh at New Hampshire Motor Speedway and ninth at Claremont Motorsports Park and then wheeled the car to Victory Lane at Langley Speedway for a third time. Coby led laps at Oswego before finishing top-10, then finished fourth at Riverhead. Christopher sealed the crown at Thompson Speedway during the Sunoco World Series, finishing in second.
“It’s pretty awesome to be part of it along with all of the other drivers,” Christopher said in Victory Lane. “This team put it all together this year and I couldn’t be happier. I started the year at New Smyrna and we had a great run and then we won at Jennerstown… it all just added up. Tommy had great finishes all year no matter who was driving.”
Six-time Whelen Modified Tour champion Coby wheeled the car to the most wins of the group.
“Tommy’s had the best car all year no matter who has been driving it,” Coby said. “I’m happy for Tommy and his team, they are a good group of guys. They are deserving of it and they have been working really hard on their program. It’s neat to see.”
Blewett will drive the car for the Martinsville Speedway event, officially celebrating the championship with the team in Virginia.
Tommy Baldwin Racing will return to NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour racing in the season-finale at Martinsville Speedway on Thursday, October 27. Follow the team on Facebook for the latest updates.
By Souza Media
Tommy Baldwin Racing announced today that rising Modified driver Mike Christopher Jr. will drive the No. 7NY for all Modified races during Sunoco World Series weekend at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park, October 7-9. The announcement includes Christopher running the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Sunoco World Series 150 on Sunday, October 9. The race will mark the penultimate stop of the season for NASCAR’s oldest touring series, and the Tommy Baldwin Racing team is in good shape to try and clinch the owners championship entering the race.
The team leads by 38 points in the championship battle over Jon McKennedy’s team, and with a strong run at Thompson, could lock up the title one race early. With 14 races in the books this season, the team has already been to Victory Lane five times on the Whelen Modified Tour.
Christopher, who has one victory with the Baldwin Racing team in NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour racing this season at Jennerstown Speedway, drove to two Open Modified wins at Thompson as well. He knows the track well, and is a proven winner on Thompson’s high-banks. The team is also planning on competing in the Outlaw Open Modified Series Sunoco 100 on Saturday, October 8, worth $10,000 to win, and the Modified Racing Series 75 on Friday, October 7.
“Mike has really been working well with our team and we felt this was a great choice for Thompson to try and lock up the owner's title,” Baldwin said. “Mike has won there before in our cars and also in the Sunoco Modifieds. Having someone in the car who knows the track well and is a proven winner is important. We’ve worked together well this year in a bunch of different races. He won his first Whelen Modified Tour race with us at Jennerstown earlier this year and just continues to grow as a driver.”
Christopher is thankful for the opportunity to return to the high-banks with Baldwin’s No. 7NY and take a shot at locking up the owner’s title. The best way to do it? Go out there and do the job normally and try to win the race.
“I have won there, including this year with Tommy, and I think with the long races, especially on the Whelen Modified Tour, it comes down to finding a different line during the runs and I feel like I’m good at it,” Christopher Jr. said. “You start running the second groove at Thompson but when the tires wear, you have to move around to the bottom and the middle. Tommy’s cars at Thompson and the package he has there have been working, whether it was in the Open Modified shows or the Whelen Modified Tour in 2022… Jimmy had a heck of a car there in August putting it on the pole for the Tour race and I’m confident we will have a great car.”
A full weekend of racing could close in a big way on Sunday for the Baldwin Racing team.
“I’m beyond thankful that Tommy lets me race with him,” Christopher Jr. said. “He’s someone I look up to in racing, not just because of his ability on the track when he drove, but he’s also extremely smart at what he does with the cars. It’s incredible that he trusts me to drive them. The races we have run together, we have performed well. We’ve been following some of the races that pay well and the good shows together… it takes a lot for him to come up to New England and support the racing and he just enjoys it so much. This one will be important.”
Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park’s NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Sunoco World Series 150 will take place on Sunday, October 9. Practice and qualifying will take place on Saturday, October 8. For more information on Tommy Baldwin Racing, visit the team on Facebook.
“We want to go out there at Thompson and put the car in Victory Lane to celebrate the win and hopefully locking up the title all in one.”