Ryan Newman, Bobby Labonte among stars expected to join NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour field at Richmond Raceway

Ryan Newman
Ryan Newman and Bobby Labonte (Photo: Adam Fenwick/NASCAR)

A group of past and present NASCAR Cup Series stars are expected to join the field for the upcoming NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour race at Richmond Raceway on March 31.

Headlining that list are Ryan Newman and Bobby Labonte. The two are racing as teammates this year for Sadler Stanley Racing, a team owned by two-time NASCAR Xfinity Series race winner Hermie Sadler and Virginia State Senator Bill Stanley. Both drivers previously announced their 2023 schedules, which included the Virginia is for Racing Lovers 150 at Richmond.

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When it comes to racing a Modified, Newman is the more experienced of the two. He’s made 32 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour starts dating back to 2008 and has scored four victories. He competed in the Modified Tour race at Richmond last year for the team, leading two laps and finishing 13th.

The driver from South Bend, Indiana earned 18 NASCAR Cup Series victories during a career that spanned 22 years. One of those victories came at Richmond in 2003.

Bobby Labonte, Ryan Newman
Bobby Labonte (top) and Ryan Newman (bottom) pictured during NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour practice at Martinsville Speedway on Oct. 27, 2022. (Photo: Adam Fenwick)

Labonte is a more recent convert to Modified racing after falling in love with the discipline a few years ago. He made his NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour debut in at Martinsville Speedway.

Alongside Newman, Labonte, the 2000 NASCAR Cup Series champion who has 21 Cup Series victories, is also expected to compete in the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour events at North Wilkesboro Speedway and Martinsville Speedway later this year.

One current NASCAR Cup Series driver is also believed to be considering an entry for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour race at Richmond. That driver is Corey LaJoie, who claimed his first NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour triumph in October at Martinsville.

LaJoie, who is in his eighth year of competition in the NASCAR Cup Series, began racing Modifieds during his teenage years and earned a NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour victory on Atlanta Motor Speedway’s quarter-mile in 2010.

In addition to Newman, Labonte and LaJoie, the current stars of the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour are all expected to race at Richmond on March 31. They include six-time series champion Doug Coby, three-time series champion Justin Bonsignore, this year’s New Smyrna Speedway winner Ron Silk, defending series champion Jon McKennedy and Matt Hirschman, among others.

Tickets for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour race at Richmond are available. Click here to order tickets today.