The biggest and longest race in the history of the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour now has a name and a more detailed purse structure.
The September 22, 250-lapper at New Hampshire Motor Speedway has been named the Musket 250. The winner of the race will collect $25,000 in addition to a custom Revolutionary War-era musket and tricorn hat.
“This will be an epic weekend for short track racers and fans from across the Northeast, so we knew we had to give it some New England flare,” said David McGrath, executive vice president and general manager of New Hampshire Motor Speedway. “We’ll have minutemen in victory lane with a customized musket, a tricorn hat and a big check for the winner of The Musket 250. You can’t get any more New England than that.”
In addition to the announced purse, the race will also pay $100 to the leader of each lap.
“Every driver wants to win at New Hampshire Motor Speedway more than any other track,” said five-time NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour champion Doug Coby. “Mentally it is intense during the 100-lap races so I can only imagine how intense it will be for 250 laps.
“And to top it all off, not only are we racing for the Modified Tour’s biggest winners purse ever, but the added lap money for leading throughout the race gives the potential for a massive pay day if you can lead a lot of laps and win the race.
“It’s going to be tough to find the balance between wanting to be up front to earn the lap money and saving enough of your equipment to make sure you have a shot in the end. Add to that the live pit stops for tires and fuel, and you’ve got one exciting package that Modified fans have never seen before. It’s going to be quite a show.”
The musket and tricorn hat will be similar to what was gifted to Dale Earnhardt Jr. during his 2017 retirement tour. The musket will be customized over the course of a few weeks by Black Hart Long Arms in Eastford, Connecticut, which has twice been featured on the History Channel.
The unique winner’s award will have New England-styling including the ramrod pipes, trigger guard, color-casehardened lock and 46-inch barrel.
The so-called Full Throttle Fall Weekend will feature a unique NASCAR tripleheader.
The weekend will be headlined by the Musket 250 for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour but the Saturday card will also feature a 125-lap points race for the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East and a 100-lap NASCAR Pinty’s Series race.
The event effectively replaced the Cup Series weekend that was lost to Las Vegas Motor Speedway during the off-season.
New Hampshire has been a mainstay on the Tour schedule since the Magic Mile opened in 1990. The series has run 67 times, through 2017, with NASCAR Hall of Fame nominee Mike Stefanik leading the wins list with eight.
A unique rules package that includes nerf bars and restrictor plates always produces multiple lead changes a lap and the most competitive on-track product of the year.