The buildup to the 2020 racing season got underway today at Iowa Speedway. Doug Coby officially ushered in the modified era when the newly crowned NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour champion took his first laps at The Fastest Short Track on the Planet. Coby was on hand to gather data in preparation for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Iowa 150 slated for July 31, 2020.
Next year will mark 15 years of racing at Iowa Speedway and for the first time ever, NASCAR’s oldest running division and only open-wheel class will venture this far west. Central Iowa race fans got their first glimpse of a NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour car in action at Iowa Speedway.
"Luckily, I got the call to be the first driver in a NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour car here at Iowa Speedway," said Coby. "It’s a great honor, number one, and it’s definitely going to be something that’s going to be exciting for not only our teams but the loyal modified fans from the Northeast."
Coby recently won his sixth NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour title in the past eight years breaking a tie with Tony Hirschman for second on the all-time championships list, trailing only NASCAR icon Mike Stefanik for series crowns in the modern era.
The modern era of the Whelen Modified Tour started in 1985. However, the first recorded NASCAR Modified race was held in 1948 on the sands of Daytona Beach and won by Red Byron, who eventually was crowned NASCAR’s first champion.
NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour cars have a higher power-to-weight ratio than that of Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series cars. A NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour car is 11-inches shorter, 23-inches wider and almost 700 pounds lighter than a Cup car. A modified car is powered by a small block V8 engine generating 600+ horsepower. Light in weight and fitted with wider tires, a modified is much faster around a short oval paved track – like Iowa Speedway – than a NASCAR Xfinity Series car.
"I think the fans in Iowa are in for a treat to see the style of racing we put on at some of the great tracks in the Northeast," said Coby. This racetrack is so wide and has so many grooves. I think it’s going to be a great show and I’m excited to come back."
While season tickets went on sale in July, Iowa Speedway offers ticket packages for every race fan and every budget. Single event tickets are on sale today waving the green flag on summertime at Iowa Speedway.
For the fifth consecutive year, Wide Opening Weekend will feature both the NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series and the NASCAR Xfinity Series on June 12-13, 2020. As part of the ARCA Menard Series Showdown, the Iowa 150 will run on Saturday, July 17. The NTT IndyCar Series will again hit the Fastest Short Track on the Planet for the Iowa 300 on July 18, giving race fans a full complement of stock car and open wheel racing during INDYCAR weekend.
The 2020 Iowa Speedway racing season concludes July 31-August 1 with another world-class NASCAR doubleheader featuring the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Iowa 150 and the NASCAR Xfinity Series U.S. Cellular 250.