Race action during the Advanced Gas Distributors 200 Wade Cole Memorial for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour at Monadnock Speedway in Winchester, New Hampshire on August 30, 2020. (Kathryn Riley/NASCAR)
Race action during the Advanced Gas Distributors 200 Wade Cole Memorial for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour at Monadnock Speedway in Winchester, New Hampshire on Aug. 30, 2020. (Kathryn Riley/NASCAR)

JDV Productions taking NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour events to next level in 2022

The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour has a storied history of teams, tracks and fans who have been around the sport for decades. Many who travel to events have been attending for years, and the teams remain committed to racing at the highest level with the goal of becoming a NASCAR champion in mind.

Better yet, the series also attracts specific followings at different tracks, and with a diverse schedule in place for 2022, more new fans than ever before will see NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour racing at their local short tracks.

Behind the scenes, work continues to produce the best for teams, drivers and fans alike. For 2022, that work is not just coming from NASCAR and the tracks, but also from an outside promotional group that is joining the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour for the second straight year.

JDV Productions, led by former Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park general manager Josh Vanada, will bring the Tour to four different venues in 2022. Vanada and his team have leased some of the Northeast’s top venues to bring the rumble and roar of NASCAR’s oldest touring series directly to diverse fan groups — specifically to some tracks the Tour has not visited in years.

RELATED: Donny Lia finds perfect time for Mods return

JDV will continue to bolster the series through its own channels with some of the top professionals in short-track racing working behind the scenes to make it all possible.

Vanada, who grew up in a racing family, has been through the ranks of the sport. He started as an official at Massachusetts’ Seekonk Speedway, where he became the Chief Starter. Years later, he operated one of the most historic tracks in the country, Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park, as General Manager.

“From the first time I saw a Modified, I was hooked,” Vanada told NASCAR.com. “There was something about the wide stance, low-to-the-ground look and noise that just drew me in. It’s important to me that our team produces regional stock car racing events with national quality. I think the Whelen Modified Tour fits in nicely with what we are trying to do with JDV Productions. It’s professional, organized and nationally recognized.”

The JDV season opens May 21 at New Hampshire’s Lee USA Speedway with the Granite State Derby 175, and it will conclude at New Hampshire’s Claremont Motorsports Park on July 29 with the Clash at Claremont. In between, the Tour will visit Pennsylvania’s Jennerstown Speedway on Memorial Day weekend (May 28) and Monadnock Speedway in the mountains of New Hampshire on June 18.

All four events will include a full slate of local track house divisions, most under the NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series sanction. 

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In 2021, Vanada and his team operated successful events at Jennerstown, New York’s Oswego Speedway and Maine’s Beech Ridge Motor Speedway. This year, they’re taking the next step.

“I’m very encouraged by the energy and momentum that the NASCAR industry has this year, starting with the (Cup Series’) Clash at the Coliseum,” Vanada said. “The competition has been intense, and the crowds have been spectacular. It was encouraging to see a sellout crowd for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour opener at New Smyrna. We are looking to build on that momentum in the Northeast.”

JDV will bring the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour to Lee for the first time since 1998 and to Claremont for the first time since 2007. The return to Jennerstown will be for the fourth straight year (second under JDV), and Monadnock’s high-banks will host the Tour again after a hiatus in 2021.

Fans look on during the Laurel Highlands 150 for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour at Jennerstown Speedway in Jennerstown, Pennsylvania and wins on Saturday, August 22, 2020. (Nate Smallwood/NASCAR)
Fans look on during the Laurel Highlands 150 for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour at Jennerstown Speedway in Jennerstown, Pennsylvania and wins on Saturday, Aug. 22, 2020. (Nate Smallwood/NASCAR)

“I’m excited about each of our events for different reasons. The returns to Lee and Claremont, honoring our fallen heroes with a special Memorial Day weekend race at Jennerstown, and dueling it out on Monadnock’s high-banks — they will all provide their own unique flare for a race fan,” he continued. “New England has always been home to me, and while the Modifieds are nationally recognized, New England is Modified country. It’s important that the Whelen Modified Tour competes on the tracks with the fans who are most passionate about them.”

As part of the season, JDV and Whelen Engineering have teamed up to bring the Whelen Granite State Short Track Cup into the series. With more than $15,000 as part of the bonus program, the three New Hampshire events — Lee, Monadnock and Claremont — will give teams even more incentive to chase the checkered flag. 

“The Whelen Granite State Short Track Cup brings the series to New Hampshire three times and invites local drivers like Steven Dickey to take on three-time champion Justin Bonsignore and the rest of the field,” Vanada said. “Giving the drivers and fans access to that competition is something that we view as important.”

RELATED: JDV Releases Whelen Granite State Short Track Cup bonus program

As part of the Whelen Granite State Short Track Cup, the team who sees their driver earn the most points over the three events will earn a smooth $5,000 as the champion to be crowned at the Claremont finale. Second place will earn $2,000, with third collecting $1,000.

Other awards involved in the Bonus Program include:

  • $200 Challenger Bonus per race – offered to the driver who competed in fewer than 50 percent of the races in the past two seasons
  • $200 Hard Charger Bonus per race – offered to the driver who gains the most positions from their starting to finishing position in each event
  • $500 Lap Leader Bonus – offered to the driver who leads the most laps over the three events in the Whelen Granite State Short Track Cup
  • $800 Consistency Bonus – offered to the driver who has the worst average finish over the three races

JDV will also offer the JDV Experience at all four races, and it’s something fans won’t want to miss. They can purchase an all-inclusive pass for a special treat of a day at the races.

Available now, the JDV Experience will give fans who purchase special tickets preferred seating at the specific race, but that’s just the start. The JDV Experience will also offer fans a private autograph session with some of the top Whelen Modified Tour drivers, a JDV Experience hat, a tour of the inspection area in the pits and a voucher for track concessions. Fans can purchase the Lee USA Speedway Experience for $150 per person, or the other three events for $125. 

RELATED: How to buy the JDV Experience

“It’s important to us to provide the best entertainment we can. We have many different ways to take races in from purchasing a grandstand ticket, to a pit pass, to the premium JDV Experience,” Vanada said. “Regardless of that ticket a fan purchases, they are going to get the great wheel-to-wheel, door-to-door racing that will showcase a variety of stock cars with New England’s most talented drivers behind the wheel. Meanwhile, we will build events around the racing – that includes unique trophies, appropriate pageantry, autograph sessions and excitement all the way through.”

Above all, Vanada and his team want what is best for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour and the teams, drivers and fans who support one of the top short-track divisions in the country. 

“It’s easy to work with people when you value the same things. Since I’ve started working with Jimmy Wilson (director of the Whelen Modified Tour) 10 years ago, we have often thought similarly about important preparation and execution that go into these events,” Vanada said. “We do most of our work prior to the race, communicate widely, prepare for the unknown and demand that our events are executed with national quality.

“When two teams come together around those ideas, success is a lot easier. We’re grateful for our partnership with NASCAR, and we’re looking forward to some competitive racing for fans to enjoy in 2022.”