The battle for the Whelen Granite State Short Track Cup remains wide open as the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour heads into its final race at Claremont Motorsports Park on Friday evening.
Following two competitive races at Lee USA Speedway and Monadnock Speedway, Tommy Baldwin Racing and Roy Hall find themselves tied atop the Whelen Granite State Short Track Cup point standings, but they only hold a 15-point advantage over the rest of the top nine drivers.
Baldwin kicked off the Granite State Short Track Cup at Lee by having six-time NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour champion Doug Coby take home the checkered flag. Coby got the victory over Hall’s driver Matt Hirschman, who had led the first 100 laps on the day before settling for third.
Hirschman appeared poised to bounce back in the second Granite State Short Track Cup event at Monadnock with another efficient performance, only to see his chances of a win fade in the closing laps following contact with the lapped car of J.B. Fortin. Despite this, Hirschman still finished second, putting him and Hall in a tie with Baldwin.
While Baldwin and Hall have set the pace so far in the Granite State Short Track Cup, a championship is far from assured for either operation, as they will have to fend off several other talented teams through 150 grueling laps at Claremont.
Below is a breakdown of the current Top 10 in the Whelen Granite State Short Track Cup and how their championship hopes look going into the Clash at Claremont 150.
- 7NY Tommy Baldwin Racing – 86 points
Despite using several different drivers on the 2022 Whelen Modified Tour season, Baldwin has utilized Coby for both Granite State Short Track Cup races. Coby has been efficient in those two starts but will have to separate himself from Hirschman on Friday to bring home the title.
- 60 Roy Hall – 86 points
Hall and Hirschman enter Friday’s Clash at Claremont 150 with something to prove after just narrowly missing out on a victory at Monadnock. The win would have given the duo a small lead in the Granite State Short Track Cup, but they will still have to engage in a heated battle with Coby for a shot at the championship.
- 16 Tyler Haydt – 83 points
Haydt’s driver Ron Silk currently leads the Whelen Modified Tour standings by just 10 points after nine races. Silk’s finishes of fourth and third at Lee and Monadnock respectively have put him Haydt well within striking distance of the Granite State Short Track Cup lead shared by Baldwin and Hall.
- 51 Ken Massa – 81 points
A feast-or-famine year for Massa and Justin Bonsignore currently has them five points behind Baldwin and Hall in the Granite State Short Track Cup. Bonsignore managed to pick up a crucial win at Monadnock following Hirschman’s run-in with Fortin and is hoping for good luck to fall his and Massa’s way on Friday.
- 3 Boehler Racing – 77 points
As with Baldwin’s operation, Boehler Racing has had multiple cars piloting Ole Blue in 2022, but Jake Johnson has driven the famous car in the two Granite State Short Track Cup races at Lee and Monadnock. Finishes of fifth and seventh in those races have given Johnson and Boehler an opportunity to take the title for themselves at Claremont.
- 64 KLM Motorsports – 73 points
A solid rookie campaign for Austin Beers with KLM Motorsports has him fifth in the Whelen Modified Tour standings and sixth in the Granite State Short Track Cup standings. Beers will have to improve upon a seventh-place finish he obtained at Lee in order for him and KLM to unseat Baldwin and Hall.
- 58 Edgar Goodale – 73 points
The Goodales are looking to rebound at Claremont after a last-lap crash at New Hampshire Motor Speedway took away their chance of a victory. Eric and Edgar are in a tie with KLM for sixth in the Granite State Short Track Cup after finishes of ninth and sixth at Lee and Monadnock respectively.
- 06 Randy Rameau – 72 points
The two Granite State Short Track Cup events at Lee and Monadnock are the only ones Sam and Randy Rameau have run with the Whelen Modified Tour this year. Sam rebounded from a tough outing at Lee to finish fourth at Monadnock, but he still has ground to cover in his and Randy’s quest to win the title on Friday.
- 22 Kyle Bonsignore – 71 points
Kyle Bonsignore is coming off a season-best performance of second at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. With finishes of sixth and 11th at Lee and Monadnock, Kyle will try to build on the momentum from New Hampshire and pull off an upset victory for the Granite State Short Track Cup.
- 54 Amy Catalano – 68 points
Tommy and Amy Catalano face significant odds of winning the Granite State Short Track Cup following finishes of 11th and ninth at Lee and Monadnock. Tommy is enjoying the best season of his Whelen Modified Tour career, but he will need another efficient performance and luck to have a shot at the championship.
- 79 Tim Lepine – 68 points
Currently tied for tenth with the Catalanos, the Granite State Short Track Cup has not gone according to plan for Lepine and his driver Jon McKennedy. After finishing second at Lee, a dismal 18th place run at Monadnock put the duo in a deep hole heading into the final race at Claremont on Friday.