Two-Time Modified Champion Spencer to be Honored at New Hampshire NASCAR to Recognize Spencer on June 28 DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (June 20, 2008) -- As part of a season-long celebration of 60 years of Modified champions, two-time NASCAR ...
Two-Time Modified Champion Spencer to be Honored at New Hampshire
NASCAR to Recognize Spencer on June 28
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (June 20, 2008) -- As part of a season-long celebration of 60 years of Modified champions, two-time NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour titlist Jimmy Spencer will be honored at the New England 100 on June 28 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Spencer, who currently works for SPEED TV as a co-host for "NASCAR Raceday" and "NASCAR Victory Lane," became the first driver to earn back-to-back NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour championships in 1986 and 1987. He is one of just three NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour drivers to capture consecutive titles.
Although Berwick, Pa., native competed on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour for just four years, Spencer left an indelible mark on the division, and the success was immediate. The Modifieds had been part of NASCAR since the very first sanctioned race in 1948, running in countless events up and down the East Coast, and 1985 marked the formation of the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour. Spencer finished third in the inaugural NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour race at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway and reached Victory Lane in the fifth event of the season.
He wound up with four wins and finished eighth in the season standings. The table was then set for a dominant two year run.
"I owe a lot to the Modified Series because it's what gave me notoriety and exposure," Spencer said. "Because of my Modified career, people recognized me the minute I moved south to race. They knew who Jimmy Spencer, 'Mr. Excitement,' was because of what I'd done up there."
Following his success in the Modifieds, Spencer he went on to become one of the few drivers to earn a victory in each of NASCAR's national series. He had two victories and 80 top 10s in 478 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts, 12 wins and 93 top 10s in 212 NASCAR Nationwide Series starts and one win with 11 top 10s in 31 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series starts.
Spencer registered four wins during his first NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour championship season in 1986, but it was his consistency down the stretch that proved to be the difference. He finished third or better in 11 of the season's final 13 races and beat runner-up Jamie Tomaino by 211 points to earn the title.
While Spencer's first title run was characterized by a strong finish, his second championship was earned early in the season. Spencer had four wins in the first eight races and never looked back as he compiled six victories, 16 top fives and 21 top 10s in 28 outings and finished 99 points ahead of Reggie Ruggiero.
All told, Spencer compiled 15 victories during his four seasons on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, a total that still ranks 12th all-time.
NASCAR plans to honor each of its 31 all-time Modified champions throughout the season. The celebration began with the recognition of Frankie Schneider, Donny Lia and Richie Evans at Thompson on April 6. Since the season-opener Red Byron, Jeff Fuller, Ernie Gahan and Mike Stefanik have also been recognized.
The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour will hold its fifth race of the season at New Hampshire on Saturday, June 28. The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour race will be immediately followed by the NASCAR Nationwide Series which will run the Camping World RV Sales 200. For ticket information, please visit New Hampshire's official Web site (nhms.com).