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Tommy Baldwin Racing moves to Modifieds, to field Donny Lia in 2017
- Updated: January 11, 2017
After leaving the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, Tommy Baldwin Racing announced plans to return to their roots in the Whelen Modified Tour with driver Donny Lia.
Baldwin will field the No. 7NY (pictured above), a sentimental choice given that his father “Tiger” Tom Baldwin, Sr., drove the number to 54 career victories.
“This (modifieds) was my introduction to racing,” Baldwin said in a release. “As a kid it’s really all that I knew. Watching and then ultimately working with my dad not only taught me the technical side, but gave me a competitive spirit. He always said ‘there is no replacement for winning.’
“When I moved to North Carolina, I took my roots with me,” he said. “I knew that at some point, at some level, I would be back involved with modifieds. I stay in contact with and follow the series regularly. It’s always been an important part of my life and now I will have the opportunity to enjoy great memories and create new ones. With a great driver like Donny behind the wheel, the 7NY team is excited for our first race.”
Baldwin had previously fielded a Cup Series entry from 2009-16, earning a charter for his No. 7 team in 2016. However, after a difficult season Baldwin elected to step down, selling the charter to Leavine Family Racing.
Now, Baldwin is returning to his roots, and in doing so is giving two-time NWMT champion Lia another chance to shine.
Lia, 38, has one Camping World Truck Series victory (Mansfield, 2008) to his name, but the Jericho, N.Y., native has made his career in the modified ranks, tallying 17 wins and two championships over a 16-year career.
“I am very honored that Tommy wants to go racing with me in his car,” Lia said. “This is a deal that I feel completes my career. It has come full circle. I get to be racing a modified that Tommy owns, with the 7NY on it. I can say, out of all the cool stuff I have had the opportunity to do throughout my career, this is right at the top of the list.”
The announcement comes just two days after Baldwin was confirmed to be working with Stewart Friesen and Halmar Friesen Racing in the Truck Series.
- 3/18 – Myrtle Beach Speedway
- 4/30 – Stafford Motor Speedway
- 6/14 – Thompson Speedway
- 7/14 – New Hampshire Motor Speedway (Race of Champions)
- 7/15 – New Hampshire Motor Speedway
- 8/4 – Stafford Motor Speedway
- 8/9 – Thompson Speedway
- 9/2 – Oswego Speedway
- 9/16 – Riverhead Raceway
- 9/23 – New Hampshire Motor Speedway