2022 50th NAPA Spring Sizzler at Stafford Motor Speedway

The Modified Race Of The Decade On FloRacing

The Modified Race Of The Decade On FloRacing

With big stars competing and big money on the line, the 50th Spring Sizzler at Stafford Motor Speedway is shaping up to be the Modified race of the decade.

Apr 20, 2022 by Brandon Paul
The Modified Race Of The Decade On FloRacing

The Spring Sizzler at Stafford Motor Speedway has long been known as the "Greatest Race in the History of Spring." But this year, the prestigious Tour-type Modified event has elevated to a whole new level for its golden anniversary. With one of the largest purses in Modified history and a stout roster of drivers expected to compete, the 50th Annual Spring Sizzler is shaping up to be the biggest Modified race of the decade. 

To understand the significance of this event, you must first appreciate the history and prestige of the Spring Sizzler. Since the inaugural race in 1972, the most legendary names in Modified racing have visited victory lane at the Sizzler. Richie Evans, Maynard Troyer, Reggie Ruggiero, Tony Hirschman, Mike Stefanik and Ted Christopher are just a handful of the names who have basked in Sizzler glory. 

The Sizzler has also become a proving ground for some of the best Modified drivers of this current generation. Doug Coby is a four-time winner of the event, while Ryan Preece has celebrated two career Sizzler victories. Bobby Santos, III is a three-time Spring Sizzler winner. 

All three of those drivers are widely recognized as three of the most successful Modified drivers of the past decade, and the trio of drivers will once again be chasing another Spring Sizzler triumph this weekend. Joining them will be one of the most dynamic rosters we've seen at a single Modified event in quite some time. 

We'll start with the home guard that will be defending their home track. Four-time Stafford Motor Speedway SK Modified champion and former NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series national champion Keith Rocco will be competing in the event, as will two-time SK Modified champion Ronnie Williams and defending track champion Todd Owen. 

The list of invaders who we don't typically see at Stafford includes six-time Tri-Track Open Modified Series champion Matt Hirschman, who has already been winning Modified races up and down the east coast this season. Former NASCAR Cup Series champion Bobby Labonte will be bringing his No. 25 Modified north to chase his first Sizzler victory. 


VIDEO: Matt Hirschman chats with Stafford's Kyle Rickey on the "Road to the Sizzler."

Patrick Emerling, the defending Spring Sizzler winner and a three-time Race of Champions (RoC) Modified Series champion, will be returning in an attempt to go back to back. Another three-time RoC champion, Chuck Hossfeld, will also be in attendance. 

Ten of the last 13 Modified Racing Series championships are represented on the roster with Jon McKennedy (4), Woody Pitkat (2), Chris Pasteryak (2), Anthony Nocella (1) and defending series champion Brian Robie. 

Five-time Turkey Derby winner and defending World Series of Asphalt Tour-type Modified champion Jimmy Blewett will be chasing his first Sizzler victory, as will 17-time NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour winner Ron Silk. Stafford Open Modified winners Chase Dowling and Michael Christopher, Jr. will also be in search of the biggest win of their young careers. 

Put all of those names together on a roster and you have one of the most star-studded fields we've seen in Modified racing over the past decade. 

Now, let's get to the money they will all be chasing. 

Overall, over $130,000 will be awarded in purse money for the event. The winner of the 100-lap Modified main event will receive a winner's check of at least $15,000. Add in bonuses, lap money and the NAPA Duels and the winning driver could take home as much as $34,000. 

Speaking of the NAPA Duels, the unique qualifying format for the event will resemble the format used for the biggest event in motorsports: the Daytona 500. On Saturday afternoon, drivers will compete in heat races that will set the lineup for two duel races. Results from the two duels will set the lineup for the first 20 starting positions in Sunday's race, and the winner of each duel will pocket $3,500. 

If the money isn't enough, the pot has been sweetened even more with the winner of the Spring Sizzler earning a ride in the Superstar Racing Experience (SRX) event at Stafford Motor Speedway on July 2. The Sizzler winner will have the opportunity of a lifetime to compete against legends from NASCAR, IndyCar and beyond in a nationally-televised event on CBS. 

Add all of this up and you have a Modified race that will go down as one of, if not the biggest Modified event of the decade. 

Of course, the 50th Annual Spring Sizzler is a can't-miss event for any short track racing enthusiasts, but if you can't make it to the track the full weekend of racing will be streamed live on FloRacing. If you're not already a subscriber, click here to join today.