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NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour

Patrick Emerling to chase NASCAR Modified Tour title

Tom Morris

Patrick Emerling is dead set on adding a NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour championship to his resume.

In a partnership with car owner Rich Gautreau, Emerling will compete full-time in the Modified Tour with assistance from longtime car builder Rob Fuller. This is in addition to a part-time NASCAR Xfinity Series schedule in the Emerling Gase Motorsports team he co-operates.

“It’s all coming together quickly and I’m excited to get the new season rolling in just over a month down in Florida,” Emerling said. “We’ve been running Modified events on and off the last few years and focusing on helping get the Emerling-Gase Xfinity program off the ground. We’ve built a great foundation there and have a bright future.

“I’ll still be in and around the Xfinity Series throughout 2024, but the opportunity to go after the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour championship is one I couldn’t pass up. We came close to winning the title with our family operation a few years ago and we’re going back there hoping to complete some unfinished business.”

Gautreau is a former SK Modified competitor at Stafford Motor Speedway and he has tabbed crew chief Dale Headquist to spearhead the effort. Headquist was the crew chief for Jon McKennedy when the No. 79 team, owned by Tim Lepine, won the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour title in 2022.

“I definitely have to thank Rich for giving me the opportunity in some great equipment,” Emerling said. “We have the potential to go out there and win some races. Worrying about the championship battle would come later in the year… we want to come out of the gates with consistent finishes in the top-five and continue to build towards even greater heights. Winning races and a shot at the title is certainly on our list of goals going into the new year. Racing on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, the competition is second-to-none. The quality of cars, drivers and teams out there is incredible.”

Matt Weaver is the owner and founder of Short Track Scene. Weaver grew up in the sport, having raced himself before becoming a reporter in college at the University of South Alabama. He also has extensive experience covering NASCAR, IndyCar and Dirt Sprint Cars.

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