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Archive for the ‘WISSOTA’ Category

Check out Lucas Oil Speedway booth at Chili Cookoff for 2018 track info, a chance to win season passes – and great chili

Tuesday, March 6th, 2018

WHEATLAND, Missouri – The Lucas Oil Speedway team again will have its championship chili hot and ready for public consumption on Saturday at one of the Ozarks’ biggest fundraisers, the 37th annual Sertoma Chili Cook Off.

Located at the Expo Center at 635 E. St. Louis in downtown Springfield, the Sertoma Chili Cook Off will find more than 70 area businesses serving up chili. Lucas Oil Speedway won the “People’s Choice” voting for best chili one year ago and will return to defend its title.

You can find the Lucas Oil Speedway team at booths U18 and U19 on the upstairs level. There will be free schedules and information on the 2018 Lucas Oil Speedway season available, along raffle tickets sold for a chance to win two general admission season passes to the dirt track.

Tickets are $15 in advance at Hy-Vee, Casey’s General Store and online at and $18 at the door. However, you can get advance tickets for $13 by contacting Lucas Oil Speedway’s Angie Doke at (417) 399-5090.

Tickets allow unlimited sampling of chili with fan votes taken for the “People’s Choice” honors that Lucas Oil Speedway won in 2017.

Area Sertoma Clubs have donated over $2 million dollars toward the Boys & Girls Clubs of Springfield from this event over the 37-year history.

“Lucas Oil Speedway is proud to be a part of one of the largest fundraisers for children’s charities of the year,” Lucas Oil Speedway General Manager Dan Robinson said. “This also is a fun opportunity for our fans to come out and see our staff, talk racing, get info on the upcoming season and taste some of our fabulous chili.”

The Sertoma Chili Cook Off runs from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. and also includes two stages with some of the area’s best bands and musicians.

The Lucas Oil Speedway season begins April 7 with the Big Adventure RV Weekly Racing Series opener. An open test and tune is scheduled for March 31.

For ticket information, including season passes for all events plus three-day passes for the 26th annual Show-Me 100 Presented by, contact Admissions Director Nichole McMillan at (417) 282-5984 or via email at

Complete Lucas Oil Speedway event information, archived stories, ticket information and tentative 2018 schedule can be found by visiting

Lucas Oil Speedway is located at Highways 83 and 54 in Wheatland, Missouri. A campground with shower and bathroom facilities is also available. With its entrance located just outside the pit gate this sprawling scenic camping facility will continue to enhance the racing experience at the Diamond of Dirt Tracks.

Click for more information and detailed directions to the speedway or call the Track Hotline at (417) 282-5984.

In addition, fans can get social with Lucas Oil Speedway by following @LucasSpeedway on Twitter, clicking “Like” at and on

Rice Lake Speedway Racers Gather To Conclude 2017 Season

Tuesday, March 6th, 2018

Rice Lake WI – Approximately two hundred race drivers, track officials, race crews, families and fans gathered Saturday night, February 17th as Adams-Hansen Inc, the owners of the Rice Lake Speedway, held their annual Awards Banquet at the Rice Lake Elks Club.

The top ten drivers in points in each of the track’s five divisions, along with the Rookie of the Year in each class were honored with plaques and trophies along with a couple of special awards that were also handed out.

After the meal Dave Adams, co-owner of the speedway, took to the microphone. He informed those in attendance on the tentative schedule for the track for the 2018 racing season. Two new events for the speedway were among the announced highlights for the upcoming racing season.

Building on the huge success of the Shaw Trucking WISSOTA Late Model Challenge Series event annually held at the track in late July, the track will host a second Late Model special tentatively scheduled for May 12th.

The Modifieds will also get a special event with the first ever appearance of the Advantage RV Modified Tour at the Rice Lake Speedway. This traveling series, headed by Watertown South Dakota’s Rueben Meyer, has raced at a number of tracks throughout the WISSOTA region and they will make their first appearance at Rice Lake on Wednesday night, June 6th as a part of the local Aquafest celebration. Local drivers will be defending their track turf against many of the best Modified drivers from throughout the WISSOTA region.

Other highlights of the schedule include include the Cedar Mall Car Show on April 5-8, opening night on April 14th, the UMSS Winged and Traditional Sprint Cars on May 26th, the Kyle Runkle Memorial Race on June 23rd, the Firecracker special on July 3rd, the Shaw Trucking Challenge Series Late Model race on July 28th, the twenty fourth annual Street Stock Little Dream race on July 31st, Season Championship night on August 18th and the season ending Labor Day special on September 1-2.

Adams then presented the “Thanks a Lot” award which annually goes to an individual or individuals that have helped out the race track by their service for the betterment of the track. This year the winners were Crystal Fankhauser, Keytun Viltz and Megan Adams who are in charge of the Kid’s Club, the Kid’s night and bike giveaways among other volunteer efforts they spear head at the track.

Ed Reichert then gave a brief summary of the 2017 racing season at the track and updated those present on the all time feature win totals at the track along with updated statistics from the Street Stock Little Dream.

Highlights include the fact that there were forty three different drivers that won feature races at the track in 2017, ninety seven drivers that won heat races and a total of three hundred and seventy eight different drivers raced at the track in 2017. The average car count was eighty five cars in the five classes.

The all time leaders in feature wins at the track are Jason Havel in the Pure Stocks, Scott Clark in the Street Stocks, Shane Halopka in the Mid Mods, Don Drew in the Super Stocks and Kevin Adams in the Modifieds.

There have now been fifteen different winners of the Little Dream with Eric Olson being the only three time winner. A total of four hundred and twenty four different drivers have entered at least one Little Dream and the winners top prize has escalated from $780 to win in 1995 to $15,400 in 2017.

Track announcer and the evening’s Master of Ceremonies Ben Brost then took over the proceedings. He introduced the top ten in points in each of the five classes, interview a number of the drivers and also introduced the Rookie of the Year in each class.

Leading the way in the Pure Stocks was Dustin Doughty from Oakdale MN. He was trailed by Tucker Quinn from Ladysmith, Bob Thompson from Cameron, Jimmy Holden from Rice Lake, Rob Grabon from Bruce, Jason Havel from Rice Lake, Zach Beaulieu from Chetek, Mike Pratt from Bloomer, James Clausen from Barron and Wayne Braun Jr. from Rice Lake. The Rookie of the Year was Stefan Hogue from Altoona.

Topping the Street Stocks was Hunter VanGilder from Rice Lake. He was followed by Jay Kesan from Weyerhaeuser, Kevin Bogdanovic from Wausau, Kirk Bogdanovic from Phillips, Don Cook from Barron, Kolby Kiehl from Barron, Josh Bach from Barron, Andy Cimfl from Rice Lake, Parker Anderson from Phillips and Shawn Amundson from Rice Lake. Bach was the Rookie of the Year.

Earning yet another Midwest Modified title was Shane Halopka from Greenwood, He was chased by Joe Chaplin Jr. from Cameron, Travis Anderson from Colfax, Denny Cutsforth from Rice Lake, Austin Ellis from Rice Lake, Reid Tiegs from Dalls, Fran Hanson from Almena, Alex Smith from Solon Springs, Calvin Iverson from Eleva and Grant Southworth from Bloomer. Iverson was the Rookie of the Year as well as being WISSOTA National Rookie of the Year in the MidMods.

The top driver in the Super Stocks was Eric Olson from Ladysmith. Trailing him were Jim Cimfl from Turtle Lake, Cooper Berlin from Rice Lake, Don Cimfl Jr. from Rice Lake, Adam Soltis from Ladysmith, Steve Davidson from Richland Center, Nick Traynor from Barron, Kyle Helling from Rice Lake, Mike Siewert from Cameron and Nick Oreskovich from Mason. Berlin was the Rookie of the Year.

The Modified point champion was Kevin Adams from Cameron. Next in line were Mike Anderson from Colfax, Steve Hallquist from Eau Claire, Pat Hoffman from Rice Lake, Dave Mayala from Barron, Ryan Viltz from Chetek, Mark Hessler from Menomonie, Dave Baxter from Eau Claire, Wayne Poteet from Spooner and Gary Baxter from Eau Claire. Viltz was the Rookie of the Year.

A highlight of the evening was the appearance of former Pure Stock track champion Jason Havel. Havel has been battling cancer since late last summer and has undergone both surgeries and chemo treatments since the end of the racing season but he was able to be on hand for the banquet and he drew a standing ovation from the crowd when he picked up his sixth place point award.

A large number of door prizes were then given away to the crowd and the evening was finished off with much “bench racing” and fellowship.

Large Gathering Celebrates 2017 Racing Season at ABC Raceway Banquet

Sunday, January 28th, 2018

Ashland, WI — Nearly 250 fans, racers, crew persons and track personnel filled the conference hall at the AmericInn in Ashland to celebrate the 2017 stock car racing season during the ABC Raceway’s annual Awards Banquet on Saturday, January 20.

Following a buffet-style meal prepared by Country Cafe & Catering, Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association president Eric Erickson congratulated the points champions of the track’s five weekly divisions, expressed appreciation for the track’s sponsors, and thanked the all-volunteer staff and Board of Directors of the award-winning three-eighths-mile red-clay speedplant.

Erickson noted in his comments that the Raceway had paid a record total purse of over $286,000 during the 2017 season, and a points fund totaling an additional $10,000 was handed out during the awards ceremony.

Erickson also paid tribute to several long-time members of the Raceway’s work staff, handing “Valuable Volunteer” plaques to Skip Hunter, Brian Lucas, Jenny Bowers, Laura Luger, Bobby Wherritt, and Greg Jaeger. He also presented the first-ever “Pitman Award” to Ken Bogdonovic, a popular and personable long-time crew member of the Spacek race teams.

Event emcee Nick Gima then introduced those drivers who finished in the top ten in points in each of the track’s weekly divisions in 2017, as well as others who achieved special accomplishments. Drivers in the top ten received trophies, and the divisional champions were also awarded commemorative jackets, banners and etched glass steins noting their accomplishments.

Of the five divisional champions, four were first-time honorees – an historic first in the Raceway’s 53-year history. Two of the track championships were decided by one point, while the largest winning margin was just 21 points.

Glidden’s Bill Byholm had waited 27 years to win earned his first-ever ABC Raceway points championship, topping the WISSOTA Modified division by 11 points. Despite sitting among the top 20 all-time in feature wins at ABC, Byholm did not win an A-main here in 2017, but he used five top-five feature finishes – including three runner-up efforts – and six more finishes in the top 10 over 12 shows to earn the title.

Byholm noted in his acceptance speech that one of his favorite memories of the season was running side-by-side for the lead in a handful of races with his son, Tanner, who completed his rookie season in 2017.

Defending track champion Neil Balduc of Bessemer, MI, scored two feature wins on his way to finishing second in the “big Mods,” just ahead of Pat Cook of Washburn and Steve Lavasseur of River Falls, as the top four in the final standings were separated by just 25 points. Six-time ABC champ Jeff Spacek of Phillips wound up in fifth.

Five-time track champ Steve Stuart of Ashland and Superior’s Rick Rivord headed up the second five in the Mods, and Jacob Hiatt of Mason, who scored his first career feature win in Ashland during the ‘17 season, claimed eighth, ahead of Tanner Byholm of Glidden and Medford’s Paul Niznik.

Nick Oreskovich of Mason was the only repeat track champion at ABC in 2017, scoring his second straight WISSOTA Super Stock title. Oreskovich led the division with seven heat wins, and his four feature wins on the season included an early-season run of three in a row to establish “the Flyin’ Farmer” as the man to beat.

Former ABC Super Stock champ Randy Spacek of Phillips opened 2017 with a feature win on his way to second place in the division’s points, 18 back of Oreskovich, while Montreal’s Cory Casari grabbed a feature win in the season finale to secure third in the standings. Superior’s Scott Lawrence, the 14-time ABC Raceway champion, finished fourth ahead of 2015 champ Jeff Klopstein of Tomahawk, as the top five were separated by just 46 points.

Shane Kisling of Park Falls took sixth in the Super Stocks, ahead of Superior’s Dave Flynn, Randy’s son Terran Spacek of Phillips, Ashland’s Matt Deragon, and Don Muzzy of Ironwood, MI.

Tyler Vernon of Ashland won the WISSOTA Midwest Modified track championship here in a season when the ABC Raceway hosted an average regular-season car count of 29 Mid-Mods – the highest in any division of any of WISSOTA’s 47 member tracks. Vernon collected three of the four feature wins he scored in 2017 in this division to earn the first championship of his family’s long and storied history of racing at Ashland.

Two-time defending track champion Paul Suzik of Ironwood, MI, claimed second place, just 21 points behind Vernon, thanks to two feature victories and five heat wins. Wayne Stricker of Highbridge used a division-leading seven heat wins along with three feature checkers to finish third, ahead of Ryan Adamzak of Marengo and Ashland’s Tanner Hicks.

Jesse Aho of Toivola, MI, scored a feature win here and was within just 46 points of the championship while landing sixth, with Tyler Hudack of Ashland finishing seventh. Wayne’s son Jared Stricker of Highbridge took the eighth-place trophy home, and to continue the father-son theme, Duane Dunbar of Marenisco, MI, finished ninth in the Mid-Mod standings, just ahead of his son Marcus, of Wakefield, MI.

Marengo’s Scott Ovaska became a first-time champion at ABC in 2017, winning the Six-Cylinder division’s honors by a single point. A long-time popular driver, Ovaska scored four heat wins and placed in the top three in 11 of the division’s 12 features run last summer, including winning the sixth of his career on June 10, to follow up a runner-up finish in the division in 2016.

Two-time and defending Sixes champ Tiffany Hudack of Ashland used four heat wins and four feature victories to finish second, and Mid-Mod champ Vernon won one feature and five heat races in the Sixes to claim third. Trego’s Randy Graham drove former Sixes champ Dale Coddington’s car to a division-best five feature wins on his way to a fourth-place trophy, as the top four were separated by just nine points. Ashland’s DeJay Jarecki finished fifth.

Sixth place went to Ashland’s Forrest Schultz, followed by rookie John Darwin and veteran Jonathon Popp, both of Iron River; Ashland’s Dalton Truchon, and the Spooner-based team of Josh Saunders and Matt Larson.

Andrew Hanson of Iron River was the fourth first-time ABC Raceway champion, claiming the 2017 WISSOTA Pure Stock title. The Northwestern High School senior was unable to attend the banquet as he was competing at a wrestling meet, but he did lead the division with seven heat wins, and his three feature wins on the season included two on July 29, as he finished fifth in WISSOTA’s national Pure Stock points.

Kyle Copp of Brule led the division with the first five feature wins of his career, placing him second to Hanson by just one point and setting up what could be the makings of a great friendly racing rivalry for years to come at ABC. Graham’s third-place finish included a feature win to put him just 15 points out of the championship, ahead of long-distance traveler Dylan Shelton of Wrenshall, MN, and Hayward’s Brock Beilke.

Sixth through tenth in Pure Stock points included rookie Matt Olson, Jake Nevala and Don Livingston, all of Ashland; rookie Austin Gibson of Trego, and veteran Jeff Christman of South Range.

The track’s coveted Sportsman of the Year award was presented to Mid-Mod racer Ryan Adamzak of Ashland, and the Most Improved Driver award was won by Jared Stricker.

Tanner Byholm (Modifieds), Deragon (Supers), Graham (Sixes) and Olson (Pure Stocks), plus Justin Weinberger of Park Falls (Mid-Mods), were recognized as the top ABC Raceway rookies of 2017.

Erickson presented former racer and current track-prep team leader Rick Przybylski with the annual President’s Award, honoring his significant contributions to the overall quality of the facility and the racing at ABC, prior to the introduction of the track champions.

During their acceptance speeches, all five champions were generous in their praise of the Raceway, especially with respect to the hard work of the staff, the track preparation, and the significant weekly purses and points fund.

A large number of door prizes were provided for those in attendance, and DJ-provided music completed an enjoyable evening for all in attendance.

The 2018 stock car racing season at the ABC Raceway is set to begin May 12 and include another very ambitious schedule, highlighted by the return of the Advantage RV Modified Series and the FastLane Motorsports Super Stock Series, plus a first-time visit by the UMSS sprint cars. The track is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information, log on to the track’s website,

Diemel, Cain, Eder are First-Time Red Clay Classic Champs; Truscott Repeats

Thursday, October 5th, 2017

Ashland, WI– AJ Diemel of Elk Mound became a first-time feature winner at the ABC Raceway in a big way by capturing the WISSOTA Late Model feature during the 42nd annual Red Clay Classic on Saturday night. With an event-record purse of over $90,000 on the line, a field of 210 entries crowded the pit area to compete in front of capacity crowds during both Friday’s heat race action and Saturday’s final qualifying rounds and features.

Also winning for the first time in the Northland’s traditional season-ending PolyDome Dirt Track Series stock car racing event, presented by FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating of Ashland and Tim’s Automotive Machine of Bloomer, were Dave Cain of Corcoran, MN, in the WISSOTA Modifieds and Kevin Eder of Ashland in the WISSOTA Super Stocks, while Michael Truscott of Chippewa Falls won his second WISSOTA Midwest Modified RCC title. Each day’s show started in bright sunshine, with temperatures in the mid-60s, and ended under clear skies and brisk Autumn temperatures during one of the most successful and memorable Red Clay Classics ever.

The Late Model spotlight event was increased from its customary 50 laps to 55, in honor of 1990 RCC Late Model champion Duane Mahder, who had passed away in late 2016 after a tragic vehicle accident; Mahder sported the number 55 on his race cars for many years. Diemel started on the outside of row 5, as polesitter and 2013 event winner Nick Anvelink led the field to the green flag alongside Marshall Fegers. Fegers got the early advantage and stretched it to a lead of over a second within five short laps, while former Classic champions Harry Hanson and Rick Hanestad trailed at a distance, followed by a quickly-charging Diemel. The early pace was fast and the field used the entire three-eighths-mile oval, often racing three-wide deep in the pack. Diemel continued his climb to the front by displacing Hanson for third on lap 7, and Anvelink regrouped and closed the gap on Fegers, eventually overtaking him for the lead on lap 12. Soon Anvelink was dealing with slower traffic, putting Cole Spacek a lap in arrears on lap 14, but he continued to maintain an advantage of at least a second on Fegers, who was an equally healthy distance ahead of Diemel. However, the field closed on Anvelink’s rear bumper for the race’s lone restart, which was brought about on lap 17 when Jesse Glenz spun in turn 4 while racing with John Kaanta for seventh place.

Fegers and Diemel took advantage of a slow restart by Anvelink to slip by on either side for first and second, and after two more laps Diemel used an inside move to capture the lead from Fegers. From there Diemel hugged the bottom groove of the track, barely brushing the large tires marking the inside border of the racing surface, to edge away to a lead of 1.135 seconds over the next eight laps. At mid-race Diemel was dealing with backmarkers, getting by Trevor Wilson on lap 28, but he was still able to extend his lead by an additional half-second as Fegers struggled to clear Wilson. Diemel stuck his race car to the bottom groove as much as he could, but occasionally he moved to the far upper line of the wide, smooth track to get by slower cars. This strategy worked well, as he extended his lead to a 2.627-second final margin of victory, or nearly a full straightaway, over Fegers. Diemel offered kind words to the Raceway’s track prep crew in Victory Lane after the fine run, stating, “I could move around anywhere (on the track) and lap some cars. “Last year was our first year here, and we decided to come back. I’m glad we did.” Anvelink crossed under the checkers just behind Fegers, but his car failed a post-race inspection and his fine effort was disallowed. Hanson, running a distant fourth for much of the race, was awarded third-place money, while two-time RCC winner Steve Laursen, who started 13th, made a late charge to take fourth, ahead of Hanestad.

Six-time RCC champ Jimmy Mars finished sixth, ahead of Lance Matthees, 2006 race winner Kaanta, 17th-starting Darrell Nelson, and defending and four-time RCC winner Jake Redetzke, who started 21st after needing a B-feature win to make the main event. The win earned Diemel a first-place check of $5,000 – the largest ever awarded to a driver in ABC Raceway history. It was Diemel’s third major invitational win in as many weekends, following victories at Cedar Lake Speedway and Red Cedar Speedway.

At the conclusion of Friday’s race program, a special dash race dubbed “Harry’s Lucky Seven” was held in honor of Hanson, who has announced that he is retiring from Late Model racing, with this year’s Red Clay Classic marking his last event competing in the division. The popular veteran racer from Eveleth, MN, was asked to select seven other drivers with whom he would like to race in the 12-lap dash, and the Raceway raised over $2,200 in donations for a purse, with the winner receiving $700, in honor of the number 7 Hanson proudly wore on his race cars during his 45 years of racing. Mars raced hard with Hanson for the early lead in the dash before eventually pulling away for the win, but after the race he announced to the crowd that he would present his first-place check to Hanson. Redetzke and Jeff Massingill challenged Hanson before settling for third and fourth places, respectively, while Hanestad, Tim McMann, Nelson and Travis Budisalovich completed the finishing order.

Cain took advantage of a long green-flag run in the Modified A-feature, then withstood challenges after a couple of late caution flags for his fifth career feature win at Ashland but his first in the prestigious event. After a five-car mess in the first turn wiped out the initial attempt to start the 35-lapper, ABC Raceway regular and 2000 RCC winner Jeff Spacek led the field to the start, but visiting Andy Jones swept around him to claim the early lead. Cain, who started outside on row 2, stayed high-side to get around Spacek for second on lap 4 and then began to chip away at Jones’ two-thirds-of-a-second lead. Also taking advantage of a fast upper line was Steve Stuart, who got by Spacek on lap 5 and eventually caught the leaders, as Cain swapped the lead with Jones twice on lap 8 before taking over for good on the next go-around.

Cain worked his way by the first of the tail-runners, Jason Richardson, on lap 14, and then extended his lead to well over two seconds as Jones and Stuart were caught up behind Richardson for a couple of laps. Stuart slipped past Jones for second on lap 19 as the pair eventually worked by the RCC Mod rookie, and 2004 Mod winner Mars followed Stuart into third, bringing with him 2007 champ Jody Bellefeuille and Jake Hartung into the mix. It was Bellefeuille who came on strong over the second half of the show, starting with a grab of fourth place from Jones on lap 24. Then Stuart’s car slapped the turn 2 guard rail and slowed with damage, ending a terrific run and bringing out just the second caution flag of the race on lap 25. This wiped out Cain’s 1.5-second lead, but he held off the threats by Mars and Bellefeuille on the restart, while Bellefeuille worked the high side to take over the runner-up position on lap 27.

Four-time Classic feature winner Joey Jensen spun while running in the top 10 to bring about the final slowdown of the race, after which Cain steadily set the pace for the balance of the run. Bellefeuille and Mars raced door-to-door for a couple of laps until Mars fell back, eventually losing third to Hartung. Cain took the checkers and the $3,500 winner’s paycheck 2.622 seconds ahead of Bellefeuille, with Hartung a distant third but well ahead of Mars and Jones. “I kept an eye on the scoreboard to see where Jody was,” Cain told the capacity crowd afterward.

National championship contender Kevin Adams lead the second five, ahead of Michael Truscott, two-time RCC Mod winner Nelson (who started 22nd after needing to qualify through a semi-feature), 17th-starting Kelly Estey and Neil Balduc.
Eder made a bit of history in winning the Super Stock feature on Saturday, becoming the first-ever hometown driver to be crowned as Red Clay Classic champion. Breaking out a new car just a few weeks back, he led all but one lap of the 30-lap distance to give it a very nice christening, worth a $2,500 payoff.

Eder started directly behind polesitter and two-time RCC champ Shane Kisling and followed him past Colton Vernon into second. On lap 2 Eder changed lanes to challenge Kisling, and one circuit later he moved by for what proved to be the winning pass. Within three laps Eder had a 1.2-second advantage, but that was eliminated when the yellow lights came on for debris on lap 6. After a three-car tangle voided the first restart attempt, Dave Flynn and Danny Richards spun down the front straight on the second try to go back to green. Vernon then spun in front of heavy traffic while trying to hold on to third place on the next restart, but most everyone dove and dodged to avoid contact.

Eder led Kisling and a determined Kevin Burdick, the 2014 RCC champ, over the next few laps, with Burdick moving by Kisling for second. Dan Gullikson and Scott Lawrence got past Patrick Beeksma and four-time Classic winner Greg Kuklinski for fourth and fifth during this brief green-flag run, which ended when Dan Severson spun on lap 12. Eder again pulled away to a sizeable advantage after the restart, while Burdick and Gullikson battled for second as Kisling faded and then dropped out with mechanical woes. A get-together involving Terran Spacek and Sam Skalsky on lap 15 brought about the final stoppage of the race, after which Eder drove a smooth and steady line uncontested over the final 15 non-stop laps.

On lap 19 Lawrence worked his way by Gullikson and began a heated battle with Burdick for second, but Burdick held on for runner-up money, a full 2.6 seconds behind the winner. Defending RCC champ Tommy Richards clawed his way from his 17th starting spot up to fourth by race’s end, ahead of Gullikson. The second five were led by ABC points champ Nick Oreskovich, ahead of Beeksma, 2010 RCC champ Eric Olson (who started dead last on the 25-car grid), Keith Kern and Wayne Dean. “We did our best just to keep the thing straight,” a very emotional Eder told the crowd from Victory Lane, while also hugging his uncle Mike and thanking a large list of friends and family who had helped him put the winning car together.

Truscott, the 2014 ABC Raceway Midwest Mod points champion who capped off a phenomenal season by winning that year’s Classic, came into this weekend undefeated in 2017 in the Mid-Mods. He had made two regular-season visits to the Ashland track this summer, and he won his heats and features on both occasions, joking after the feature win in early August that he “might not come back until the Red Clay Classic,” in order to not spoil his perfect season here. He continued his winning ways by taking wins in both his Mid-Mod and “big Mod” during Friday’s qualifying, and then he started on the outside of the third row for the 25-lap, $1,200-to-win Mid-Mod main event. Pole-starter Mack Estey was a little too quick to claim the point at the drop of the green, and officials penalized him for “jumping” the start, giving the pace-setting chores to Wayne Stricker.

Adams, behind the wheel of 2011 RCC champ George Dalbeck’s car, challenged Stricker and was scored the leader at the end of lap 1, before Karl Kolek’s stalled ride brought about another quick caution stop. Adams then led the field under green for a handful of laps, as Truscott quickly worked his way past Estey and Mark Kangas before challenging Stricker for second on lap 3. A bobble cost Truscott some ground but not his third-place standing on lap 4, and Canadian hotshoe Jamie Davis moved past Estey into fourth on lap 5. Adams’ lead was just over a second when the yellow flag flew because of debris on lap 8, and Truscott used the restart to show a fender to Adams in a challenge for the lead. Kangas, who had slipped back to ninth after the restart, spun to slow the pace for the final time on lap 9, and over the next couple of laps of green-flag racing the battle for the lead involved five solid contenders – Adams, Truscott, Stricker, 12th-starting Skeeter Estey, and Davis.

Estey, the national Mid-Mod points leader heading into the weekend, took third away from Stricker on lap 13, and eventually the lead trio drew away from Stricker and the rest. On lap 18 Truscott went to the outside to work his way around Adams and grab the lead, and from there he sped away to his 17th career feature win at Ashland. Truscott’s lead was as large as 1.285 seconds, but Adams closed the gap to less than a half-second as Truscott caught the tail end of the field. “Buzzy (Adams) was holding the bottom so well,” Truscott told the crowd about his decision to go high to make the winning pass. “I showed myself underneath, but then I decided to try the top side, and it worked.”

Estey, who won this event in 2010, finished third, well ahead of Stricker. Tommy Richards followed Stricker at the final stripe, but his car didn’t pass a post-race technical inspection, giving fifth to Davis. Shane Halopka, the only other two-time RCC Mid-Mod champ, came home sixth ahead of Jake Smith, Paul Suzik, Mack Estey and 2017 ABC points champ Tyler Vernon, who started 25th in the 25-car field. Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland once again awarded $150 bonuses to the drivers posting the fastest-timed laps in each A-feature. The bonuses were paid to Fegers in the Late Models (16.621 secs, 81.223 mph average), Cain in the Mods (17.305, 78.012), Eder in the Supers (17.330, 77.900), and Adams in the Mid-Mods (17.292, 78.071).

Lake Shore Cafe posted $114 bonuses for each 14th-place feature finisher; receiving those bonuses were Jeff Provinzino (Late Models), Al Uotinen (Mods), Kuklinski (Supers) and Travis Anderson (Mid-Mods). Kyle Bernhoft again worked with the Raceway to create an online “Fans’ Choice” provisional ballot, where race fans cast votes via the track’s website to award feature starting positions to drivers who had not otherwise qualified through Friday’s heats. Nearly 4,700 ballots were cast, with Cole Spacek (Late Models), Tanner Byholm (Mods), Olson (Supers), and Vernon (Mid-Mods) receiving the provisionals.

Champ Pans of Eau Claire and SSR Race Cars of Spring Valley paired up to provide commemorative t-shirts to each of Friday’s heat winners, and Champ Pans also handed out heavy-duty shop mats to various drivers during the feature starting position redraws on the front straight on Saturday. The Neighborly Bar of Ashland once again offered a “Bridesmaid’s Challenge” to the second-place finishers in each of the four features on Saturday. Fans, drivers and local businesses contributed to a total fund of $2,400, which was split among the four runners-up if they each agreed to wear formal gowns during their post-race interviews and photos in Victory Lane. All four drivers happily participated, much to the delight of the capacity crowd on hand.

The entry total marked the first time since the 2010 Red Clay Classic (206) that the car count exceeded 200, and was the highest count since the event-record total of 239 was set in 2003. The field, representing four states and Canada, included 32 Late Models, 47 Modifieds, 59 Super Stocks and an RCC-record 72 Mid-Mods. A wide, fast, smooth red-clay surface provided plenty of three- and four-wide racing throughout the weekend. The Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association wishes to express its appreciation to the many individuals and businesses who contributed time, materials and resources to make this year’s Red Clay Classic another huge success. The ABC Raceway’s annual awards banquet will be held in January 2018; more information will be made available on the Raceway’s website,

Punky Manor Challenge of Champions

Wednesday, September 27th, 2017

Menomonie, Wisconsin (September 21, 22, and 23, 2017) the Red Cedar Speedway presented the 38th annual Punky Manor Challenge of Champions sponsored by Bill’s Distributing & Tim’s Automotive. Amazingly warm temperatures greeted the crowd and a total of 217 race cars through three nights of action. The track conditions were absolutely perfect, blazingly fast, and arguably the best in memory for the Punky. The WISSOTA Poly Dome Dirt Track Series sanctioned Late Models (30), Modifieds (31), Super Stocks (32), Midwest Modifieds (44), Street Stocks (23), and Pure Stocks (24) competed, In addition, the Red Cedar Speedway Hornets (13) and both the Limited Dirt Late Models (13) and 600 Mini Mods (7) were all in action.

Feature winner included AJ Diemel, Jake Hartung, Dan Gullixson, Tony Bahr (twice), Mike Knudtson, George Richards, Jeremy Johnson, and Jeff Provinzino. The format included heat races being lined up by draw and the top 16 feature qualifiers decided by passing points. The features were filled out by B Features with the top four taken out of the Midwest Modifieds and top eight from the remaining classes.

The WISSOTA Late Models saw three heats won by AJ Diemel, Jimmy Mars, and Darrell Nelson, as Jesse Glenz won the B Feature. In the A Feature, outside front row starter Jake Redetzke took the early lead as pole sitter Jimmy Mars settled into second and set chase. An early multi car crash in turn one saw Chad Mahder and Michael Keller unable to continue and Travis Budisalovich sustain enough damage to be eliminated a few laps later. Jim Carlson was able to restart the feature.

The restart saw Redetzke power out to a several car length lead as Mars and Diemel began to battle for second. Diemel took the position as Nelson and Rick Hanestad filled out the top five. Diemel continued his charge on the high side, closed the gap on the leader, and took the point for himself. Mars followed suit and moved to second as Redetzke settled into third.

Laps continued to click off in the 40 lap event as Mars inched closer to the leader. He got a terrific run off of turn four and moved outside of Diemel on the front stretch. Diemel tried to move back up in front of Mars but Mars was already there and he was squeezed against the wall with a spectacular shower of sparks. Both cars avoided a spin as Mars dropped back in behind the leader. However, there was a great amount of tire smoke from the 28 and shortly thereafter a tire blew out, drawing the yellow and abruptly ending the ten time Punky Manor winner’s night.

The restart saw Diemel run unchallenged the remaining distance to the checkered flag as Nelson moved to second and Fegers moved to fifth. The top five finishers included Diemel, Nelson, Redetzke, Hanestad, and Fegers. After starting 13th in the B Feature and 21st in the A Main, John Kaanta finished sixth as Lance Matthees, Mike Prochnow, Nick Anvelink, and Jeffrey Massingill rounded out the top ten. The retiring Harry Hanson was scored in 11th at the checkers.

The WISSOTA Modifieds saw four heats won by Brandon Jensen, Jake Hartung, Michael Truscott, and Kevin Adams, as Kelly Estey won the B Feature. It was Hartung and Jensen on the front row of the feature as Hartung took the early lead and dominated the 30 lap event which was slowed only twice for cautions. The race track was blistering fast as it was first Kevin Adams who chased Hartung in the runner up spot. As the leaders were running in heavy lapped traffic, Cory Brugeman slowed on the front stretch, providing the only break in the action.

Coming back to green, there was a three car crash on the tail end of the group drawing the yellow. The restart saw Dave Cain move to second over Adams as Hartung left the crowd behind. Jimmy Mars moved to the top three from deep in the field as Mike Anderson, who also started outside the top ten moved to fifth. They continued at impressive speeds to close out the event and Hartung added another big trophy to his case. The top five finishers included Hartung, Cain, Mars, Adams, and Anderson. Cory Mahder, Darrell Nelson, Jeremy Nelson, Michael Truscott, and Brandon Jensen rounded out the top ten.

The WISSOTA Super Stocks saw four heats won by Jeff Brauer, Nick Oreskovich, Eric Olson, and Tommy Richards, as Brian Mikkonen won the B Feature. In the A Feature, Dan Gullixson moved from inside the second row to the lead as outside front row starter Oreskovich moved to second in in front of Brauer. They continued to scorch the speedway for 18 consecutive laps with Steve Thomas in fourth and Eric Olson running in fifth. Tommy Richards made a moved for the top five as Luke Schultz stalled on the inside of the backstretch and the yellow flew.

The last eight laps ran green as Gullikson lead the entire way to the checkers. Richards drove to second but Oreskovich took the position back and Ben Hillman made a fine late charge into fourth. The top five finishers included Dan Gullikson, Nick Oreskovich, Tommy Richards, Ben Hillman, and pole sitter Jeff Brauer. Steve Thomas, Scott Lawrence, Eric Olson, Shawn Huse, and Brian Mikkonen, who came out of the B Feature, rounded out the top ten.

In the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds, Antonio Pintaro, Travis Anderson, Wayne Stricker, Derek Haas, and Matt Klukas won their respective heats. Michael Truscott won the first of two B Features as Tony Bahr moved from ninth to win the second. It was the pole sitter, Jason Richardson early in the feature but he developed issues and lost power on lap five, trapping Travis Anderson directly behind and starting a chain reaction crash. Richardson was out as Anderson suffered body damage to the nose. In the resulting crash behind, Matt Klukas, Jesse Bryan, Michael Truscott, Calvin Iverson, Jesse Aho, and Mark Kangas were collected with Kangas being unable to continue.

Notably on the restart, Tony Bahr had already cracked the top five as David Swearingen brought the field to green. Unfortunately the lead was short lived as he spun and was relegated to the rear. Sticker lead the parade to green but Bahr swiftly moved into second and made short work of the leader. Bahr took the point and was not going to look back as he completed an amazing run to the feature win.

Meanwhile, Travis Anderson moved into second on the high side. Stricker was spun on the inside of turn two and it was Mark Thomas surprisingly called for the yellow as the spin looked to have possibly been caused by a different driver. The restart saw Bahr and the outside row move forward as Karl Kolek moved into second and Halopka into third. In the final run to the finish, it was Bahr to the win as Halopka overtook second.

In an amazing passing fest, Tony Bahr parlayed an 18th position start to the win as Shane Halopka moved from 19th to second. Karl Kolek and Travis Anderson finished third and fourth as the third B Feature qualifier to finish in the top five saw Michael Truscott come from 17th. Jake Smith, Wayne Stricker, and Jesse Aho, were followed again by B Feature runners Clark Swartz who started 20th as Shadow Kitchner drove from 23rd to a top ten finish.

The WISSOTA Street Stocks saw three heats won by Danny Richards, Jay Kesan, and Michael Knudtson. Knudtson and Richards held the front row of the feature as Richards drove to the lead and continue to lead until the first caution of the event which was a red flag incident involving five cars. A restart was aborted and a second restart saw Knudtson appear to make initial contact with the leader coming off turn two. Knudtson drove inside Richards and drag raced him to turn three where he drove inside the leader, made contact, and drove him out of the bottom groove all the way to the loose dirt near the wall. Knudtson made the pass to the lead on the extremely aggressive move, drawing a loud reaction from the crowd.

Under green, Knudtson led as Richards chased through a series of three more yellow flags which kept the pack tight. Eventually under green, Richards moved inside of Knudtson in turn three but raced him cleanly through the corner. Knudtson maintained the point but on the straightaway down the backstretch, Richards spun the leader much the the delight of the fans. With Richards relegated to the rear for the on track payback, Knudtson raced unchallenged to the win.

The top five finishers included Michael Knudtson, Jay Kesan, Adam Soltis, Karl Genett, and Kyle Genett. Hunter VanGilder, Travis Loew, Braden Brauer, 23rd starting Ron Hanestad, and Robert Seidler rounded out the top ten.

The WISSOTA Pure Stock heats saw Lucas Kallenbach, Dustin Doughty, and Kyle Copp win the heats as it was George Richards dominating the feature from outside the second row. It was pole sitter Kyle Copp leading lap one and Richards taking over from there. The first yellow flag flew for William Fisher coming to a halt on the backstretch on lap four. The restart saw Krysta Doughty come to life and pass Dustin Doughty and Copp to move to fourth.

Kent Harmon’s decent run went up in smoke on on lap 14, diminishing Richards’ very solid lead. On the restart, Dustin Doughty made a fine move to second from outside the top three. A three car caution saw Dean Pronschinske sent to the rear and back under green, it was a short lived run as a spinning car slowed action again. Once again back under green and as the leaders were taking the white flag, Kent Deutsch rolled to a stop on track.

The green, white, checkered finish saw George Richards, Jeff Tisdale, Kyle Copp, Tyler Wahlstrom, and Dustin Doughty finish in the top five. Dean Pronschinske rebounded to sixth as Tyler Hallquist, Lou Puzio, Nicholas Hazelton, and Chad Bowers finished in the top ten.

The Red Cedar Speedway Hornets saw Jeremy Johnson and Bradley York win the heats and Jeremy Johnson sweep the night in the feature. Johnson took his pole starting position all the way to victory lane. It was York early but a caution regrouped the feature and it was Johnson in the lead on the restart. Dean Butler moved to second but faded as Johnson motored away.

Two separate cautions brought Johnson back to the pack, but other than Jason Junker taking second and trying to close late, Johnson had them covered. It was Johnson, Junker, York, Butler, and Alex Waldera in the top five. Derrick Reed, Colin Nyseth, Chad Halterman, Jordan Langer, and Craig Oas were scored in the top ten.

The Limited Dirt Late Model heats were won by Denny Cutsforth and Kyle Johnson but Tony Bahr made no doubt about the feature as he won his first of two feature wins on the weekend. Firstly, it was Cutsforth in the lead as Shaun Mann overtook the lead on lap two as Bahr moved to second. Bahr methodically reeled in Mann and moved side by side with the leader. A two lap battle ensued before Bahr took the point. It was Lance Hofer dicing through traffic to the third position as he closed on the front two as they moved through lapped traffic to the checkers.

Bahr, Mann, Hofer, Justin Sass, and Cutsforth were in the top five. Johnny Emerson, Dennis Larson, Matt LaDuke, Barry Johnson, and Robbie Johnson were all scored in the top ten.

The 600 Mini Mods saw John Griffin win the heat and Joe Provizino won the feature. There was one caution and Chris Gilbertson challenged for the lead late. At the line it was Provizino, Gilbertson, John Griffin, Chad Dugan, and Chris Abts in the top five.

The Red Cedar Speedway has concluded its 2017 racing season and will return in April 2018.