Craig Gabriele



A Lot Changes on the Whelen Modified Tour for the 2014 Season

Silly Season


Big changes are on the horizon for the Whelen Modified Tour in 2014 season.

Doug Coby who has driven full time the last two seasons for the 52 team of Wayne Darling has made the move over to the 2 team owned by Michael Smeriglio III for the 2014 season. Coby won the WMT Championship in 2012 and finished 2nd for the Darling Team in 2013.

ďThis was the most difficult thing Iíve probably ever had to do in making a decision in racing,Ē Coby said. ďMy whole career Iíve always been the driver that was passed over on the good rides. I was always right there, but next in line. And here I was with two teams that wanted me. Thatís a position Iíve never been in before. Iím grateful for that. Iím leaving on good terms. Itís really like leaving a family behind.Ē

But there were questions with the Darling organization. Darling confirmed not long after the end of the 2013 season that his team would run part-time in 2014 because of some issues for time commitments from key team personnel. When it became apparent that Coby might leave, Darling made the moves to prepare the team to run full-time again. But Coby said security of stability with Smeriglioís organization was key.

ďItís a stability thing for me I think,Ē Coby said. ďAfter the way that my career has gone, one thing that I crave is knowing that Iím stable year-to-year. Not that the [the Darling team] is unstable, but the [Smeriglio team] is just very stable and theyíre really looking to go after a championship. From an equipment standpoint and a personnel standpoint, I think both teams are equal. It just seems like the right direction for me to go with right now.Ē

This leaves the 2003 WMT Champion Todd Szegedy without a ride for the 2014 season.  Szegedy, the 2003 Modified Tour champion had been driving for Smeriglio since the start of the 2006 season prior to his release. Szegedy had 10 victories with the team and over eight seasons he finished worse than fifth in the standings only once, in 2013, when he was sixth in the final standings.

Mike Stefanik the 7-Time WMT Champion is also without a ride at this time. Stefanik will be replaced by 18 year old Tommy Barrett of Millis, MA in the Chris Our 22 Modified for the 2014 season. Our and his team has become big players on the WMT since joining the Tour part time in 2012.

Our Racing has quickly expanded since he first joined the Whelen Modified Tour in 2012 when it fielded a car for half of the schedule for Stefanik. Our then went full-time this past season with Stefanik, who registered two wins and finished fifth in the championship standings













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Revised: December 23, 2013