Column By: DOMINIC KONARESKI / RPW – WEST HAVEN, CT – The 2021 NASCAR Whelen Modified Series season is still several weeks away. Justin Bonsingore heads in, once again, as the defending champion with hopes to win what would be his third series crown.
With that said, many drivers will try to stop him. Here’s my power rankings of the top 5 drivers heading into the 2021 Modified season.
#5 – Jon McKennedy
Jon McKennedy had one of his strongest seasons in 2020. He finished second in points, finishing in the top 10 for every single race (nine races…nine top 10s)
McKennedy was the only driver in the top 5 in points who did not have a win. He’s achieved almost all of his success in the Tommy Baldwin Racing 7NY.
While he does have a win in the series back in 2018, McKennedy will be heading into 2021 with a massive amount of momentum and has the makings to achieve multiple wins.
#4 – Ron Silk
Ron Silk has run the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour races over the past several years. In those events, he has amassed 15 wins, leading to a win percentage of 6.9%.
This veteran had two of those career wins last season, running in eight of the nine series races. Of those eight events, he finished in the top 5 on five different occasions.
#3 – Craig Lutz
Craig Lutz is one of the most talented drivers on the grid. With three career NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour wins, two of those came last season and he has all the momentum.
In 77 career starts, Lutz has 16 Top 5s and 34 Top 10s. Last season, he had an average finish of seventh, which is the best so far in his career.
Let me remind you that was in a nine-race season. If you look at it, if it had been a 16-race schedule, Lutz had the projection to have an average finish of about fifth.
#2 – Doug Coby
By his standards, Doug Coby had a down year, career wise, in 2020. He captured just a single NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour win and finishing third in the standings.
The veteran Connecticut campaigner will continue to look for championship number seven in 2021, losing the crown last season to Justin Bonsignore. To date, Coby has 29 series wins and an astonishing 99 career Top 5s.
#1 – Justin Bonsignore
Justin Bonsignore is one of the most talented drivers to ever race on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour. Coming off a three-win 2020 season, the young racer from Holtsville, NY has 29 career wins on his resume.
The defending NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour champion is a once-in-a-lifetime driver. Last year, he had an average finish of second. That is just unbelievable. Think about this. If he can do that in nine races, imagine what he could do during a 16-race slate.