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Posts in 'ABC Raceway' Track

Savoy Snares ‘Pure Excitement 25’ Win at ABC

July 17th, 2017

Ashland, WI — Ryan Savoy slipped past Justin Weinberger after a mid-race restart and held off steady challenges for the win in the 14th annual “Pure Excitement 25” feature, presented by the Ashland-Bayfield County Sportsman’s Club, at the ABC Raceway on Saturday night.

A season-high 111 cars – including 26 WISSOTA Pure Stocks – were entered for PolyDome Dirt Track Series action on the northern Wisconsin oval on a sunny, humid 85-degree night in front of a large crowd. The result was a 23-race program that included two make-up features from the rain-shortened July 8 show. Savoy, of Foxboro, started on the outside of the second row of the 25-lap headliner and stayed right with front-row starters Weinberger and Michael Blevins through the first eight laps, which were interrupted frequently by caution flags. The lead trio consistently pulled away after each restart, with Blevins threatening often to take the lead on the outside. The pace of the race was slowed on laps 5 through 8 due to a number of bumps and spins, including a half-rollover by rookie James Vendela after contact with another car on the front straight on lap 8; the rookie driver was unhurt. From then on, however, the race ran nonstop, and it was after that final restart that Savoy took advantage of a bobble by Weinberger to dive to the inside coming out of turn 4 and take the lead while completing lap 9. Blevins, the 2014 event winner, took the outside line around Weinberger to claim second, but the Raceway’s defending Pure Stock points champ charged back to retake that spot on lap 11. The running order stayed fairly steady until late in the run, when lapped traffic came into play. Savoy expertly slipped past the slower Aaron Bernick, but Weinberger decided to pass the backmarker on the outside, opening up the bottom for Blevins to sneak by and take second for good. Chad Carlson had grabbed fourth after that lap 8 restart and never gave it away, and 19th-starting Dylan Shelton picked his way through the field over those final 17 laps to finish fifth and claim hard-charger honors for the race. Savoy’s second career feature win at ABC paid him $1,252 – easily the biggest paycheck of his career. At least 17 of the 26 drivers who started the event took home paychecks larger than what a Pure Stock driver receives after a regular-night win here.

It helped that Jeff Spacek of Phillips started on the pole, and it also helped that the 20-lap WISSOTA Modified A-feature clicked off without a yellow flag. But had the race been any longer, Spacek may not have picked up his 58th career ABC Raceway feature win. Spacek swapped the lead with Jake Hiatt over the first couple of laps before gaining the advantage with a low-groove pass on lap 2. As the six-time track champion pulled away for what looked to be a runaway win, Neil Balduc threatened to take second from Hiatt but was unsuccessful. However, Kevin Eder later completed a pass of Hiatt on lap 4. Points leader Bill Byholm, who started on the fourth row, picked his way forward over the next few laps, overtaking Balduc on lap 6 and then Hiatt on lap 7 to move into third. Spacek’s lead was more than a full second as Byholm worked inside on Eder during the race’s middle stages, and once Byholm completed the pass with four laps to go he began to chip away at the difference. Spacek’s lead had dwindled to two-thirds of a second when he saw the white flag waive, but he had just enough in his overheating race car to hold on for his first win in Ashland since August 2014. Byholm was within just a quarter-second at the checkers, while Eder held off a charging Paul Niznik for third. Pat Cook, who started dead last on the 14-car grid, came home in fifth.

The WISSOTA Super Stocks overcame a first-lap spin to run off 18 uninterrupted laps before a grinding crash brought about a green-white-checkered finish, with Shane Kisling of Park Falls picking up his first win here since opening night in dominant fashion. After the Don Muzzy spin to open the 20-lapper, Cory Casari swept around polesitter Colten Vernon to lead lap 1, but Vernon charged by on the low side to retake the top spot. After Casari reclaimed the point on lap 3, Kisling, who started on the inside of row 3, followed him into second, while Shawn McFadden and Dave Flynn took turns displacing Vernon for third and fourth. On lap 9 Casari held a half-second lead, but within three circuits Kisling completed an inside run on him and took the lead away. From there the two-time Red Clay Classic champ pulled to a lead of over 2.1 seconds before lap 18, when backmarker Aaron Mashlan turned in front of McFadden and Flynn while they were battling for third under the flagstand. The hard hit caused significant damage to McFadden’s machine, but Flynn was able to continue. In the final two-lap sprint Kisling easily held off Casari for a winning margin of over a second, while Flynn came home a close third. Matt Deragon made a gutsy inside move on the final lap to pass three cars and come home fourth ahead of Randy Spacek.

In the make-up feature from the July 8 show, Flynn held the lead for another green-white-checkered finish, but Nick Oreskovich swept around to nip Flynn at the line by 75 one-thousandths of a second for his fourth win at ABC this year. A massive eight-car pile-up after a lap 2 restart badly damaged some very strong contenders, but Vernon – who also started on the pole for this race – worked hard to hold off McFadden and Flynn before they ganged up on him and took over first and second, respectively. After a lap 10 restart Flynn used an inside move to overtake McFadden, and with three laps remaining Oreskovich went up a lane to get by McFadden for second. Mashlan and Myron Basina made contact on the front straight with the white flag in the air, causing Mashlan to spin and forcing the two-lap shootout. Oreskovich took advantage of his outside second-row restart position and pulled alongside Flynn under the white flag, then edged Flynn by that slimmest of margins under the checkers. McFadden, Jeff Klopstein and Kisling completed the top five.

The WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature had more than its share of drama – much of it coming after the race was over. Brandon Copp got by polestarter Brady Jokinen to take the initial lead, but Ryan Adamzak made his way around Copp to become the new leader on lap 2. Adamzak was flying around the top lane of the smooth, wide race surface and quickly built up a lead of over a second-and-a-quarter by lap 5. By that time Wayne Stricker had moved into second place, and after the restart for Jokinen’s stalled car on lap 6, the divisional points leader stayed right in the race leader’s tire tracks. Delays on laps 9 and 11 kept the field close to Adamzak’s rear bumper – especially a surging Dan Kingsley, who found the bottom groove to his liking. Kingsley drove under Stricker to second with seven laps to go, and he continued to work the low side to reel in and pass Adamzak on lap 14. Kingsley pulled to a full-second lead on the field by lap 18 and crossed under the finish line by nearly twice that much two laps later, while Tyler Vernon managed to slip past Adamzak for second with less than two laps left. That pass ended up being very crucial for Vernon, of Ashland, as it later resulted in his second Mid-Mod victory of the season after Kingsley’s car was deemed to be guilty of a technical infraction after a post-race inspection. Adamzak and Stricker were awarded second and third, Jesse Aho scored fourth-place money, and Paul Niznik, in his season debut in a Mid-Mod at Ashland, claimed fifth.

Each of the two ABC Six-Cylinder features involved some interesting subplots regarding that division’s points chases. In the regularly-scheduled 15-lapper DeJay Jarecki grabbed the early advantage from polestarter Bella Bretting, while rookie John Darwin followed into second. After a couple laps Scott Ovaska, who led the points coming into the night, and Tiffany Hudack, who trailed Ovaska by a slim margin, claimed third and fourth. On lap 5 Hudack’s car suffered a rare engine failure and crept to a stop, knocking her from the event. Then, after a spin by Bretting, Randy Graham, who restarted fourth, drove under Ovaska and Darwin into second, and within a lap he slipped by Jarecki for the lead.
Darwin’s stopped car on lap 7 allowed Ovaska to grab second from Jarecki on that restart, and Vernon recovered from his spin with six to go to get by his brother Cole Vernon and Jarecki over the closing laps to take third. But there was no catching Graham, of Trego, as he scored his third win of the season by nearly two-and-a-half-seconds on Ovaska. Forrest Schultz, who restarted at the tail of the field after a cause-of-restart penalty on lap 7, stormed home to fifth.

In the earlier make-up feature, Ovaska was involved in a three-car crash on the opening lap that knocked him from the event. Ironically, he would be scored as the 13th-place finisher – just as Hudack would be later after her engine failure in the regularly-slated race. Darwin, who was also involved in the melee, led the field through two restarts, during which Vernon and Bubba Anderson passed polestarter Dalton Truchon for second and third, respectively. But Anderson’s car broke loose and he fell back and out of the race, moving Jarecki to third. The lead trio pulled away from the balance of the field, and on lap 8 Vernon used and inside pass to take the lead away from Darwin. Hudack led a second pack of three and caught the leaders with four to go, and as the white flag was waiving Jarecki made a move to pass Darwin but slipped, causing both he and fifth-running Graham to spin. Vernon led the field through the green-white-checkered sprint for the first of his two feature wins on this night, with Hudack a second back as runner-up – just as Ovaska would finish in second later. Graham, Darwin and Schultz completed the top five. Hudack held the points lead for little more than about four hours but did gain one point on Ovaska in the standings by virtue of a better finish (her second-place run versus Ovaska’s third) in heat race action on this night.

Fast-timers on the night were Eder in the Mods (16.423 seconds), Casari (17.076) and Flynn (16.696, make-up) in the Supers, Adamzak in the Mid-Mods (18.003), and Graham in both Sixes mains (18.574, and 18.363 in the make-up).

A huge number of racers, teams, businesses and fans contributed to a total purse of $5,887 – just three dollars short of the event’s all-time record payout set in 2013. The Raceway sends out its sincere thanks to Al Rapp, Auto Value Auto Parts of Ashland, Battle Axe Saloon, Bob’s South End Towing of Superior, Brandon Copp, Breakwater Restaurant of Superior, Chicago Iron & Supply, Dirt Track Racing in the Northland Facebook Page, FastLane Motorsports, Greg’s Towing & Repair, Grymala Racing, Janet Chmielak, Jokinen Racing, Ken & Cheri Deragon, Lake Shore Sales & Service, NAPA Auto Parts, Cheryl & Nick Gima, Oliver’s Service of Superior, Pizza Parlor of Iron River, Security State Bank of Iron River, Steve Stuart, Trail’s End Pub & Grill of Sanborn, Upper Cut Salon, Zar’s Bar, 4Q2 Performance, and especially the many fans who donated, for their generosity in making the event such a huge success.

On Saturday, July 22, the ABC Raceway will host the second stop of the third annual FastLane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Series. The three-day, three-track series is expected to draw over 50 drivers from as far away as Montana, the Dakotas and Canada, as well as Minnesota and Michigan, to compete for well over $12,000 in purse monies and contingencies.

The Series will kick off on Friday night, July 21, at AmsOil Speedway in Superior before Saturday’s show in Ashland, which will culminate in a 33-lap WISSOTA Super Stock feature to honor former driver and car owner Don Koivisto, who passed away this Spring. The Series concludes on Sunday, July 23, at the Proctor (MN) Speedway.

Hot laps on Saturday start at 6:15 pm, followed by a full five-division race program, including heats, semi-features and A-features, at 7. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information log onto the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com. or on race days call (715) 682-4990.

Pure Stocks to Run for Big Money at ABC

July 14th, 2017

Ashland, WI — The Ashland-Bayfield County Sportsman’s Club will present the 14th annual “Pure Excitement 25” special this Saturday night at the ABC Raceway.

The popular headline event for the entry-level WISSOTA Pure Stocks will include a 25-lap A-feature that is expected to pay at least $1,250 to win out of an overall purse in excess of $4,900 at press time. The winner’s share is roughly ten times that of a first-place check on a regular night at the northern Wisconsin oval, and that should draw upwards of 30 drivers or more from tracks throughout the region.

The initial purse for the event was set by the Raceway Board at around $3,500; since then contributions from fans, businesses and race teams have significantly bolstered the coffers. Everyone is welcome to continue to help build the purse by contributing any amount to any finishing position in the feature, right up until just prior to the start of the race.

The event record for overall purse is just shy of $5,900, collected for the 2013 race. The largest first-place check ever written for the PE25 was $1,413, awarded to Michael Blevins of Hibbing, MN, after the 2014 running.

There have been 11 different winners of the “Pure Excitement 25,” but only one driver is a repeat champion – current WISSOTA Super Stock driver Cory Casari of Montreal, who won the first two editions in 2004-’05. Shawn Amundson of Barron is the most recent winner of the special, collecting his first and only ABC Raceway feature win during this event in 2015.

Last year’s PE25 was rained out, and the Raceway was unable to reschedule.

Members of the Ashland-Bayfield County Sportsman’s Club will be at the track on Saturday selling tickets for their annual fundraiser raffle, with the final drawing to be held at the Raceway prior to Saturday’s features. Prizes include some very high-end rifles and shotguns, or cash alternatives, with proceeds going toward the Club’s many outdoor educational programs.

Because of wet weather interrupting last Saturday’s race program just prior to the kids’ bike races and feature action, there will be a lot of bonus racing scheduled for fans to enjoy over the next few weeks. The make-up of the July 8 features for the ABC Six-Cylinders and Super Stocks will kick off this Saturday’s show, while the WISSOTA Modifieds and Midwest Mods will run their missed A-mains from that night as part of the track’s FastLane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Series special on July 22.

The Pure Stock make-up feature will be added to the Hall of Fame Induction Ceremonies and “Race to a Cure” cancer awareness fundraiser night on July 29, which will also offer free grandstand admission. The kids’ bike races are slated to be added to the “Summer Blast” fan appreciation night on August 19.

All five regular weekly divisions will be in action on Saturday, with hot laps starting at 6:15, followed by heat races at approximately 7 pm. Adult grandstand admission tickets are priced at just $11 each, and younger fans accompanied by a paying adult will be admitted free. “Z-93 Race Night” will air on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream live on www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Rains Wreck ABC Bike Race Night

July 10th, 2017

Ashland, WI, — The race track was smooth, wide and fast. The car count was tremendous. The crowd was enthusiastic. And the kids were ready to race their bikes at the ABC Raceway on Saturday night.

And then the rains came.

A season-high 104 cars registered for PolyDome Dirt Track Series action on the northern Wisconsin red-clay oval for the Kids’ Bike Race night, presented by Chicago Iron & Supply of Ashland, during a beautiful mid-summer evening. But as soon as the checkered flag was waived over the last qualifying race of the program – the second of two semi-features for the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds – dark clouds moved in from the west and opened up, and a light sprinkle grew into a significant downpour that ruined any chance of saving a perfectly-prepared track, much less allowing the many youngsters in attendance to go onto the racing surface and compete in the popular annual event.

Each of the five feature races – for the WISSOTA Modifieds, Super Stocks, Midwest Mods and Pure Stocks, and for the ABC Six-Cylinders – set for this night will be reslated over the course of the next few Saturday nights at ABC, with a schedule of the make-up races to be announced soon.

Kevin Eder Racing and the ABC Raceway donated bikes that were given away while the crowd awaited the final announcement regarding the show’s cancellation. Interestingly, one of the bikes was won by a young fan visiting from Colorado, while another went home with a youngster from Las Vegas, NV.

Next up at the ABC Raceway will be the 14th annual “Pure Excitement 25” special event for the Pure Stock division on July 15. The event is expected to draw drivers in the entry-level division from several neighboring states, with a final purse to be determined by fan contributions taken in throughout the race program leading up to their 25-lap main event. At press time, the feature winner’s share was expected to be in excess of $850 – nearly seven times more than the usual take-home for a Pure Stock winner.

It has also been announced that the track’s annual “Race to a Cure” cancer awareness fundraiser, originally planned for June 30, has been rescheduled for Saturday, July 29, to be run in conjunction with the Raceway’s fourth annual Hall of Fame induction ceremonies, presented by Zar’s Banquet Hall of Ashland. The program will be co-presented by Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland and Heartland Communications, and it will include free admission to all fans in attendance on the grandstand side, food and beverage specials, prizes and much more.

The Raceway will be accepting free-will donations throughout that night’s race program, with all proceeds to be forwarded on to cancer awareness programs in Ashland and Bayfield Counties. Area organizations are welcome to contact members of the Raceway’s Board of Directors, which are listed on the Raceway’s website, to offer help, reserve vendor space at the track, or arrange for other opportunities to be a part of this community-oriented event.

Hot laps are at 6:15 pm, followed by racing action at 7. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information log onto the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com. or on race days call (715) 682-4990.

ABC Raceway Cancer Fundraiser Washed Out

July 3rd, 2017

Ashland, WI, June 30 — Due to the significant amount of precipitation in the Chequamegon Bay area over the past few weeks, and with a forecast calling for even more rain, the Board of Directors for the ABC Raceway regretfully cancelled its “Race to a Cure” cancer awareness and research fundraiser race program scheduled for Friday night.

The annual fundraiser, to be sponsored by Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland along with Heartland Communications of Ashland, has been rescheduled for Saturday, July 29, to be held in conjunction with the Raceway’s fourth annual Hall of Fame induction ceremonies.

there will be no races at the ABC Raceway on Saturday, July 1, but PolyDome Dirt Track Series racing will resume here on July 8 with a full five-division WISSOTA-sanctioned program that will include kids’ bike races, to be presented by Chicago Iron & Supply of Ashland.

Hot laps will be at 6:15 pm, followed by green-flag action at 7. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

the ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information log onto the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com, or call (715) 682-4990 on race days.

‘Race to a Cure’ Cancer Fundraiser at ABC Includes Free Admission

June 29th, 2017

Ashland, WI — Friday night’s race program at the ABC Raceway will include much more than just an action-packed night of stock car racing.

Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland, in conjunction with Heartland Communications of Ashland, will present the Raceway’s annual “Race to a Cure” fundraiser night, to help benefit the various cancer awareness and prevention groups in the Chequamegon Bay area. The rare Friday night program will include a full race schedule for the WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds, Super Stocks, Midwest Mods and Pure Stocks, and the ABC Six-Cylinders, and admission to the main grandstands will be free of charge for all fans.

Throughout the show, fans will be invited to help the Raceway raise money by donating to the area’s cancer-fighting causes through a number of different avenues. A free-will offering can be donated at the admission gates or at other collection points located at the track, and there will also be an ongoing favorite-driver vote during the program, giving fans a chance to donate at one dollar per vote, with all monies collected through these programs going directly to the overall fundraising effort.

The Neighborly Bar of Ashland will be selling cancer awareness buttons, citing “No One Fights Alone,” at the track on Friday, with at least half of the proceeds going directly to the contribution collection. Prizes donated by the Neighborly Bar, gift certificates from Lake Shore Cafe of Ashland, and other prizes – including cash – will be drawn for from the names of the fans who purchase these buttons during the show.

In addition, there will be live music at the track from 5-7 pm and a one-dollar “happy hour” special on select food and drink from 5:30-7:30 pm.

“We are hoping to make this a community-wide event, and not just a race night,” stated Raceway president Eric Erickson. “This is such an important cause, and Northern Clearing has once again gone above and beyond the call in order to bring attention to this worthwhile mission.

“This can be a great way for folks in our area to kick off the Fourth of July weekend. And you certainly can’t beat the price.”

Almost as a bonus to all the goings-on, the racing action on the track has increased in intensity as the season has progressed. Last Saturday night former track champ Steve Stuart of Ashland used a late pass to claim the Modified main event, while Superior’s Dave Flynn was simply dominant en route to his Super Stock feature win.

Wayne Stricker of Highbridge was at the front when time ran out on the Midwest Mod feature last weekend here, and Trego’s Randy Graham showed that he has become quite comfortable in the Sixes in garnering his second straight win.

One of several visitors making a trip to Ashland last Saturday, Jason Havel of Rice Lake took advantage of an early-race restart to hold off the field for the Pure Stock feature win in only his second-ever run at ABC.

There will be no racing at the ABC Raceway on July 1, but the track will get back into its regular Saturday night rhythm beginning on July 8, when it will hold kids’ bike races with the help of Chicago Iron & Supply of Ashland.

Hot laps will start on Saturday night at 6:15 pm, followed by heat races at approximately 7 pm. All grandstand admission tickets are free for this night of racing and fun. “Z-93 Race Night” will air on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream live on www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

ABC Raceway Hall of Fame Class of ‘17 Inductees Announced

June 26th, 2017

Ashland, WI — During Saturday night’s race program at the ABC Raceway, the next group of inductees into the track’s Hall of Fame were announced.

During its fourth annual induction ceremonies coming up in late July, the Raceway will add ten more members to its Hall of Fame. As unanimous inductees, two local businesses will be honored for their long-time support of the Ashland track and of area stock car racing – FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating of Ashland, and the NAPA Auto Parts Stores of Ashland and Washburn.

The four new members to be added in the Volunteers and Contributors category, for long-time service to the overall success of the Raceway, will be George and Mary Bowers, Mike Eder, Tom Lajcak and Nick Nye.

In the Drivers category, eight-time ABC Raceway champ Don Copp will be inducted along with 1978 Late Model champion Jim Eliason, five-time ABC Street Stock champ Larry Haderly, and two-time Red Clay Classic winner Scott Hipsher.

A dinner will be served in their honor during the afternoon on Saturday, July 29, at Zar’s Banquet Hall. The formal induction ceremonies will be held at the track during the race program later that evening.

Stuart, Flynn, Stricker, Havel Earn RoC Berths at ABC

June 27th, 2017

Ashland, WI — Four drivers earned invitations to September’s Afco Shocks “Race of Champions” event by winning their respective features at the ABC Raceway on Saturday night.

Ninety-three drivers registered for action in the five-division PolyDome Dirt Track Series race program presented by the Safari Tavern of Ashland, with Ashland’s Steve Stuart, Dave Flynn of Superior, Highbridge’s Wayne Stricker, and visitor Jason Havel of Rice Lake punching their tickets for the Race of Champions features to be held during the WISSOTA 100 weekend in Huron, SD, on September 13-16.

Once again, Mother Nature had a hand in how this night’s program played out. Off-and-on light rains throughout much of the morning and early afternoon made track preparation a challenge, but the racing surface smoothed out over the course of the program, making for a wide, fast red-clay oval before the sprinkles started again with five laps to go in the program-ending WISSOTA Pure Stock feature. The 17-race docket kicked off promptly at 7 pm and was completed well before 10:30.

Stuart was on a mission in the 20-lap WISSOTA Modified A-main, weaving his way from his inside-third-row starting spot through traffic and into a battle for third place within the first seven laps. At the very start of the race, Al Uotinen worked low to sneak by the front-row pair of Paul Niznik and Steve Lavasseur and set the early pace, with Lavasseur and Niznik swapping second over those first few laps. Uotinen built himself a lead of nearly a second-and-a-half as Stuart closed in on the Lavasseur-Niznik feud. Stuart worked low to get by Lavasseur for third on lap 7, then, finding the upper groove to his liking, Stuart displaced Niznik for second on lap 9. Within a couple more short laps he was within striking distance of Uotinen for the lead, but when the pair caught visiting Bryan Hessler, the leader cleared the slower car with relative ease, while Stuart struggled briefly to get by. Once past Hessler, Stuart had only six laps to again reel in Uotinen, who had pushed his lead back to a full second. But Stuart flew around the upper groove of the track, pulled alongside Uotinen on lap 17, and passed him at the flag stand. From there the five-time track champ cruised to his 30th career ABC Raceway feature win, better than 1.1 seconds ahead of Uotinen, while posting the race’s fastest lap at 17.014 seconds. Neil Balduc was a distant third but was well ahead of Jacob Hiatt, who had gotten by Niznik late in the run for fourth.

In the WISSOTA Super Stock 20-lap headliner, it looked as though Greg Kuklinski had a decent shot at a second straight feature win, after ending a seven-year drought last Saturday. The Raceway’s all-time feature wins leader made a thread-the-needle move between front-row starters Flynn and Shawn McFadden Jr to get from the inside groove to the high side of the track, where he edged ahead of polestarter Flynn. However, on lap 3 Flynn made a strong drive off the low side and pulled ahead of Kuklinski to stay. Randy Spacek, who started behind Kuklinski in row 3, followed Flynn on the lower lane and pulled alongside Kuklinski to start a battle for runner-up honors that lasted for a couple of laps, before the yellow lights blinked on for a get-together between Colten Vernon and visitor Cooper Berlin. On the ensuing restart three other cars crashed to hold things up, but from there the pace was fast and the action clean. With Spacek and Kuklinski resuming their duel, Flynn drew to a 1.7-second lead by the race’s midpoint, and he extended that by another half-second two laps later as Scott Lawrence began to mix it up with the second-place pairing. Lawrence stayed low to grab third from Kuklinski as the top line started to fade, and then he dove lower still to take second from Spacek with six laps left. By that time Flynn was nearly three-and-a-half seconds ahead, but the 14-time track champion trimmed over a half-second off Flynn’s margin by the time the checkers flew, despite the winner’s race-best 17.474-second lap. Spacek held on to third ahead of 11th-starting Cory Casari and Shane Kisling. While the “big Mods” and Supers ran off their features with barely a hiccup, the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds could not complete their 20-lap A-main within the allotted 30-minute time limit. This was perhaps to Stricker’s benefit, however, as he had to fend off a strong challenge from Dan Kingsley during the precious few green-flag laps that were completed.

Of the 31 Mid-Mod entries on the night, twenty-four started the main event, but only 18 survived the carnage. Paul Suzik grabbed the initial advantage from the pole, and Stricker bolted to the high groove from his second-row starting spot and pulled alongside, just before Kinglsey was spun around to bring about the first stoppage. Ryan Adamzak and Tyler Vernon got together before the next lap could be scored, and debris on the track stopped the next green-flag attempt. Stricker had the momentum on the high side to get around Suzik, but the yellow flag kept slowing his progress. After a Brady Jokinen-Alex Smith get-together brought about a lap 3 caution, a grinding three-car crash involving second-generation racers Marcus Dunbar, Jared Stricker and Brandon Copp stopped the pace on lap 4. Wayne Stricker finally cleared Suzik to officially lead lap 5, and on the next circuit Adamzak and Cody Carlson came together while battling for sixth place. As the next four laps stayed green Stricker pulled to a three-quarter-second lead, while Kingsley dove low to get by Suzik for second. Kingsley then got a chance at the lead when Gunner Peterson’s spin stopped the show on lap 10, and he stayed alongside Stricker for the next two laps before James Kannegiesser’s spin stopped the race right at the 30-minute mark. The race was then called complete, with Stricker scoring his second win of the season over Kingsley, Suzik, 12th-starting George Truscott and Carlson. Suzik set the fast lap early on at 17.544 seconds.

Havel made a rare trip to Ashland pay off with the victory in the 12-lap WISSOTA Pure Stock feature. However, he did have a huge stroke of good luck help him to his first-ever feature win here. Havel started from the pole and held off Chad Carlson at the front of a tight pack of contenders for the first lap, but he slid high in turn 2 at the start of lap 2, allowing Dylan Shelton to slip by for the lead. Havel was saved, though, by a crash involving Jake Nevala and Tyler Keup further back in the field on the same lap, which negated Shelton’s pass and put Havel back on the point for the restart. Havel chalked up the lesson as learned and stuck as close to the bottom groove as he could for that restart as well as the final one of the night a lap later, after Brock Beilke’s spin. With a tight pack of cars in tow, Shelton could only hold close to Havel’s trunklid as he trailed the visiting hotshoe around the red-clay oval for the remaining 10 laps. Kyle Copp, coming off of three straight wins here and another one at Superior the night before, worked his way by Chad Carlson for third on lap 4, and Minnesota traveler Dustin Doughty followed suit to take fourth. With four laps to go and the light sprinkles just starting, Andrew Hanson took fourth from Doughty but could climb no further. Havel nearly lost the lead once more as he got caught up behind the slower Beilke with three laps remaining, but Beilke dove into the infield just as Shelton took a peek to the outside. Havel held on from there for the landmark win, with Shelton again right behind. Copp, Hanson and Doughty completed the top five.

Trego’s Randy Graham made it two wins in a row with another solid performance in the ABC Six-Cylinder feature. Graham, driving a car owned and previously raced by former track champ Dale Coddington, weaved through heavy traffic over the first two laps and stormed past polestarter Jonathan Popp into the lead. He would not be challenged from there despite two quick mid-race stoppages – one for Matt Larson’s spin on lap 6, and the other for a two-car mess on lap 8. On the restart after the latter caution, Tiffany Hudack worked her way around Dalton Truchon to take second place, but the defending track champ could not track down the leader. Scott Ovaska also made a bold outside pass of a couple of cars to grab third, but that’s where he would stay, as Graham was better than a second-and-a-half up on Hudack and the rest at the final stripe, while posting a race-best 18.721-second lap in the process. Forrest Schultz trailed Ovaska in third, just ahead of Tyler Vernon.

The ABC Raceway will host a very special race program on Friday, June 30, when Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland and Heartland Communications present the track’s annual “Race to a Cure” fundraiser for Chequamegon Bay area cancer organizations. Besides presenting five divisions of racing action, the track will offer free admission to all fans in attendance on the grandstand side, and there will be food and beverage specials, favorite driver voting, prizes and much more.

The Raceway will also be accepting free-will donations throughout the race program, with all proceeds to be forwarded on to cancer awareness programs in Ashland and Bayfield Counties. Area organizations that would like to be involved are welcome to contact members of the Raceway’s Board of Directors to offer help, reserve vendor space, or arrange for other opportunities to be a part of this community-oriented event.

Hot laps are at 6:15 pm, followed by racing action at 7. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates. The Raceway will not run a program on Saturday, July 1, but will return to its regular Saturday night schedule on July 8.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information log onto the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com. or on race days call (715) 682-4990.

Graham Snares ABC Sixes’ Sizzler; Kuklinski, Dunbar Snap Seven-Year Droughts

June 19th, 2017

Ashland, WI, — Randy Graham of Trego fended off Scott Ovaska after a race-long battle to win the 11th annual Six-Cylinder “Summer Sizzler” feature, presented by the Auto Value Auto Parts stores of Ashland and Ironwood, MI, at the ABC Raceway on Saturday night.

Graham’s win, which capped off the five-division PolyDome Dirt Track Series race program, was his second in as many nights in the unique-to-ABC class, after he edged Tiffany Hudack during the division’s visit on Friday to the Proctor (MN) Speedway.

Kevin Eder of Ashland; Greg Kuklinski of Ironwood, MI; Duane Dunbar of Marenisco, MI; and Kyle Copp of Brule also took checkered flags on this night. Eder last won here on opening night and Copp took his third-straight feature win, but it was the first time back in Victory Lane at Ashland for Kuklinski and Dunbar since the same August night back in 2010.

Seventy entries competed on a muggy night when light rains tampered with track preparations and discouraged a few fans and drivers from coming. But Mother Nature created a perfect “racing window” and held off the precipitation from just prior to the first heat race taking to the track at 7:10 pm until 9:55, when Graham raced under the final checkered flag of the night and the sprinkles began again.

Graham started to the right of pole-starter Ovaska for the $400-to-win, 15-lap “Sizzler” event, and within two laps he had cleared Ovaska and held a two-length lead, while DeJay Jarecki battled with Ovaska for second. Ovaska came back and slipped past Graham for the lead on lap 3 just before Tyler Vernon’s looped ride brought about the first of three yellow-flag slowdowns.

One lap after the restart Jarecki’s ride was punted, and after another circuit Bubba Anderson’s car also got turned around. But the remaining ten laps stayed green, and Graham first held off a determined effort by Jarecki and then set his sights on the leader.

At midrace Graham worked low to pull alongside Ovaska, and on lap 9 he completed the winning pass. On the same circuit Hudack used a low-lane move to grab third from Jarecki, and with five to go Vernon copied the move for fourth. Graham eventually pulled to a 1.25-second advantage at the checkers, while Ovaska led Hudack and Vernon in a close-knit battle for second. Jarecki came home fifth.

Kuklinski chalked up his track-record 90th career feature win – and his 41st in the WISSOTA Super Stocks – after an absolutely dominant performance in his 20-lap feature. In fact, as the first 18 laps clicked off non-stop, the popular veteran racer built up a nearly half-lap lead on the strong field.

Kuklinski started from the pole, beat fellow front-row starter Don Muzzy into turn 1, and checked out on the pack. Muzzy held off the initial challenges from Cory Casari, but by lap 2 Casari gained the better of that battle. Muzzy regrouped by lap 6 and retook the runner-up spot, and sixth-starting Jeff Klopstein took to the high side to grab third.

With traffic thick behind Muzzy, Kuklinski roared away to a 4.7-second lead – the length of a straightaway – by lap 9. Three tours later he was slipping past Aaron Mashlan to put him a lap in arrears, and by the time he passed 12th-running Myron Basina on lap 14 the lead margin was six full seconds.

Klopstein and Nick Oreskovich slapped fenders in a battle for third that nearly clogged up an already tightly-packed field even more with four laps remaining, but the green lights stayed on until Casari spun in turn 2 just as Kuklinski crossed under the white flag. Despite the field tucked tight to his rear bumper for the restart, Kuklinski charged away in the two-lap sprint for his first feature win at Ashland since August 21, 2010, ahead of Muzzy and Klopstein, while Dave Flynn and Scott Lawrence used last-lap passes to sneak into the top five.

“I grew up driving on this sticky red clay,” said Kuklinski in Victory Lane. “This track tonight was perfect for me.”

Like Kuklinski, Dunbar also started on the front row of his feature, led every lap, and captured his first feature win since – ironically enough – August 21, 2010. However, this veteran “Yooper” never held more than a car-length lead and had to withstand constant pressure throughout the 20-lap WISSOTA Midwest Modified final.

Dunbar swept around pole-starter Brandon Copp through the first turns and ran a steady pace around the upper groove of the three-eighths-mile oval throughout the event. After a lap 4 caution for debris, Wayne Stricker dove under Copp for second and brought Ryan Adamzak in tow to third, setting up a three-car dogfight up front that lasted most of the remaining green-flag laps.

Stricker tried on nearly every lap to dive to the bottom of turns 3 and 4 and attempt a “slide-job” pass of Dunbar for the lead, but Dunbar stayed true to his line and held the point. On a couple of occasions, when Stricker didn’t take a shot at a pass for the lead, Adamzak snuck a peek to the inside looking for a way into second, but he, too, was unsuccessful. The top three raced in close formation until Jesse Aho was turned around while fighting for a top-ten spot on lap 11, and after two more laps under green a three-car altercation stopped the pace again.

Over the final seven laps Dunbar fought off more threats from Stricker and Adamzak and held on for the long-overdue win. Dunbar’s son Marcus came home fourth, just ahead of Vernon.

Eder worked his way around pole-starter Brian Mikkonen on the initial lap of the WISSOTA Modified A-main, then edged his way by Rick Rivord a lap later and ran away with his second feature win of the season here.

With drivers shuffling positions behind him, Eder flew to a 2.195-second lead after just six laps before the event’s lone caution came about for a spin by Jeff Spacek. The remainder of the 20-lapper clicked off non-stop, and Eder was in complete control. Steve Lavasseur, who restarted third after a pass of Mikkonen just before the stoppage, gave Rivord a number of challenges for second before eventually settling back, and points leader Bill Byholm, who restarted fourth, kept the three-car battle for second interesting.

Eder was over six seconds up on Rivord as he crossed under the checkered flag for his 26th career feature win, and Lavasseur outran Byholm on the final sprint coming out of turn 4 for third. Neil Balduc, whose car took a scary hit into the turn 1 guardrail during earlier heat race action, came from dead last on the grid to finish fifth.

Kyle Copp overcame a lap 1 spin and weaved his way through some close-quarters traffic early to move into contention for the WISSOTA Pure Stock feature win. And even after grabbing the lead away from Graham three laps after the restart he had to hang on as the lead pack consisted of as many as seven potential winners running in a bunch.

Ryan Savoy went around Graham and Andrew Hanson for second on lap 5 of the 12 scheduled, and Hanson then claimed third just before Brock Beilke’s car coasted to a stop on the front straight with five laps remaining. Hanson made a strong move to the inside on Savoy with just two laps left, and Savoy’s ride slipped back after taking the white flag as Dylan Shelton and Graham charged by. But Copp stayed just ahead of all that to score his third-straight feature win here by less than a car-length.

Lap times were lightning-fast on the smooth, wide, sticky red-clay surface, with Eder (Mods, 16.380 seconds), Kuklinski (Supers, 16.848), Brandon Copp (Mid-Mods, 16.915) and Graham (Sixes, 18.222) posting the fastest lap in each’s respective feature. All four times were within four-tenths of a second of each division’s single-lap record, with Copp’s time within 37 one-thousandths of a second of the best-ever Mid-Mod lap at ABC.

On Saturday, June 23, the ABC Raceway will hold its qualifying features for the annual “Afco Race of Champions,” to be held during the WISSOTA 100 weekend in Huron, SD, in mid-September. The winners of the features in the track’s four WISSOTA-sanctioned divisions will receive invitations to represent the track and attempt to qualify for the prestigious event. Hot laps are at 6:15 pm, followed by racing action at 7. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information log onto the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com. or on race days call (715) 682-4990.

Saturday will be Sixes’ Night to Shine at ABC

June 16th, 2017

Ashland, WI — The 11th annual Six-Cylinder “Summer Sizzler” will be the headline event at the ABC Raceway on Saturday night.

The Auto Value Auto Parts store of Ashland will be the presenting sponsor of the popular event, which will put the spotlight on a division that is unique to the northern Wisconsin speedplant.

The class is intended to be as close to entry-level as possible, with rules limiting the amount of horsepower and handling tweaks that can be implemented. However, the chassis used are nearly the same as are used in the WISSOTA Super Stocks, and the bodies make it tough to tell Sixes apart from Supers from even a short distance.

The in-line six-cylinder motor may not generate the roar of a Super Stock’s V8, but the action in the division can be highly competitive and very entertaining. No other track – certainly not in the Upper Midwest, at least – offers a class of racing based on this type of engine-and-chassis combination for a regular weekly show.

Over the previous ten “Sizzlers” there have been eight different winners; only Neil Adamzak (2010, ‘14) and Travis Swanson (‘07-’08) have repeated as “Sizzler” champs. The defending champion of the event is Tiffany Hudack of Ashland, who also became the second straight and third-ever event winner to go on the division championship. Dale Coddington turned that trick in 2015, while Patrick Beeksma won both the “Sizzler” and the Sixes crown in 2012.

Two drivers – Don Muzzy in 2011 and CJ Polacek in ‘09 – scored their first career feature wins in this special. Tyler Hudack (2013) is the only other winner of the “Sizzler.”

A $650 payday awaits the winner of the Sixes’ A-main. Many drivers from the division will be fresh off of a visit to the Proctor (MN) Speedway on Friday night.

The Raceway’s other four PolyDome Dirt Track Series divisions will be in action as well. The WISSOTA Modifieds are coming off of an historic night on the red-clay oval, as the Advantage RV Modified Series made its way to Ashland for the first time in its seven-year history last Saturday, and based on the thrilling ending to its 40-lap feature it may not be the last. First-time visitor Landon Atkinson of Little Falls, MN, used a last-lap pass of race-long leader Al Uotinen of Superior to steal his first ABC feature win.

Nick Oreskovich of Mason continued his early-season tear with his third straight win in the WISSOTA Super Stock headliner, while sophomore driver Kyle Copp of Brule made it back-to-back feature wins in the WISSOTA Pure Stocks.

Ashland’s Tyler Vernon claimed his first-ever WISSOTA-sanctioned feature win with a strong run in the Midwest Mod A-main, and Scott Ovaska of Marengo returned to Victory Lane for the first time in six years after his Sixes feature win.

Hot laps will start on Saturday night at 6:15 pm, followed by heat races at approximately 7 pm. Adult grandstand admission tickets are priced at just $11 each, and kids accompanied by a paying adult will be admitted free. “Z-93 Race Night” will air on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream live on www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

First-Time Visitor Atkinson Scores ABC Mod Special Win

June 13th, 2017

Ashland, WI — Landon Atkinson of Little Falls, MN, made a strong last-lap pass of race-long leader Al Uotinen to steal the $1,500 Advantage RV Modified Touring Series win at the ABC Raceway on Saturday night. The PolyDome Dirt Track Series race program was presented by the Bad River Lodge, Casino & Convention Center of Odanah and drew a season-high 101 cars to the three-eighths-mile red-clay oval to compete on a night when 90-degree temperatures and an incessant south wind helped the track become smooth, wide and black-slick.

Atkinson, one of five Mod drivers who had never competed at the northern Wisconsin speedplant before Saturday, started the 40-lap spotlight event on the inside of row 3 and waited for his opportunity to move forward, as polestarter Uotinen grabbed the initial lead from Steve Lavasseur. Kevin Eder used a daring inside-out pass of another first-time visitor, Series points leader Jeremy Nelson, to take third on lap 3, but Atkinson dropped low to sneak by Lavasseur and Eder for the spot, just a lap before Eder and Lavasseur made contact and spun to bring out the race’s first slowdown. Over the next 12 laps Uotinen drew away from a great side-by-side battle for runner-up honors between Nelson and Atkinson, while behind them another first-timer, Dan Ebert, slipped by Lavasseur for fourth. Uotinen’s lead was up over a second by the time Atkinson had finally cleared Nelson on lap 10, but within five laps Atkinson was up to the six-time ABC champ’s pushbar and threatening to take the lead.

A corner-marker was kicked onto the track to stop the action on lap 16, after which Ebert used a wide-open outer lane to sweep around at least four cars and challenge Atkinson for second. However, Brian Mikkonen’s spin negated the strong move, and on the ensuing restart Lavasseur made note of Ebert’s move and changed lanes to block Ebert from making the same pass. Ebert’s forward progress was stopped on lap 19, when he tried going one lane higher and looped his ride, collecting Steve Stuart in the process. On the restart Stuart tried Ebert’s strategy and moved from seventh to challenge Lavasseur for fourth, but he advanced no further and soon faded.

At the race’s midpoint visiting Andy Jones worked low to get by Nelson for third, and within a lap newcomer Matt Gilbertson displaced Lavasseur for fifth, but Uotinen and Atkinson pulled away from the field over the next ten laps, with the challenger within a half-car-length or less of the leader. Despite a couple of threats, Uotinen held firm, and then another stray corner-marker drew a yellow flag, setting up a nine-lap shootout. The lead pair pulled away again to decide the win, running primarily nose-to-tail, until they came off of turn 4 with the white flag in the air. That’s when Atkinson found some bite off of that corner and made a drive deep into turn 1, nosing his ride ahead of Uotinen’s. Once in the clear, Atkinson pulled away to a nearly-full-second advantage to become the fifth different feature winner over the first five races of the Touring Series’ season.

Jones was a fair distance back of Uotinen for third-place money, while Lavasseur recovered for fourth ahead of Nelson. Atkinson also set the fast single-lap time in the event, at 17.854 seconds, to add that bonus to the $1,500 first-place check.

Another dominant performance kept Mason’s Nick Oreskovich well in front of the WISSOTA Super Stock field for the majority of its 20-lap feature run, but he had to survive a challenge after a late-race caution for his third straight win of the season here. Oreskovich started on the outside of row 4 and used just two laps to sweep around pole-starter Matt Deragon, and from there the “Flyin’ Farmer” justified his nickname by riding the high groove all the way around the Raceway oval. Deragon, meanwhile, worked hard to fend off Cory Casari, Scott Lawrence and Dave Flynn throughout the next eight laps, before the yellow flag flew for debris.

Fifteenth-starting Jeff Klopstein charged through the field during those first ten laps and was threatening to take fifth away from Flynn when he tangled with another car and he looped his ride in front of most of the field with four laps to go, eliminating Oreskovich’s 1.8-second advantage. Klopstein made a run on Deragon on the restart, but the scramble that was caused by the bottleneck through the first turn gave Casari an opening with which to take second, and Lawrence followed to third. Oreskovich could not pull away over the final four laps, and coming to the checkered flag Casari had a clean look off the bottom of turn 4 to steal the win, but the defending champ maintained enough momentum to get to the finish line first by three-tenths of a second. Lawrence was close behind in third, and Deragon held off Randy Spacek for fourth. Oreskovich’s race-best lap of 18.762 seconds was over 2.3 seconds slower than his record-setting lap from the week before.

In another landmark finish, Ashland’s Tyler Vernon nabbed his first-ever checkered flag in a WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature, taking the lead late in the 20-lap run from Jesse Aho. Aho, starting from the inside on row 2, cleared Tyler Hudack and Marcus Dunbar to move into position, then swept around pole-starter John Kallas before the first lap was completed to take the lead. Ryan Adamzak drove hard to the inside to move by Hudack for second on lap 2, and Vernon, who had started back in row 4, followed along to third.

Over the first four laps Aho had stretched his lead to nearly a full second, but over the next couple of circuits Adamzak had closed most of that gap. Then a caution-flag slowdown for a marker on the track brought the field back to Aho’s bumper, and after a second attempt to restart the run Aho regained some of his advantage as Adamzak dueled with Vernon for second. One lap past halfway Vernon completed an outside pass of Adamzak, and he stayed within a half-second of the leader until a lap 16 stoppage. Vernon opted for the outside line, as was his choice under the “Delaware double-file” restart rules, and within a lap he had cleared Aho for the lead with an outside-line pass. Aho charged back and took one more shot with a look to the inside on the white-flag lap, but Vernon’s momentum coming off the final turn helped seal the win by just over two-tenths of a second.

Adamzak, Wayne Stricker and Tanner Hicks completed a close-formation top-five. The fast lap of the race belonged to Vernon with a tour in 18.938 seconds.

Vernon also made some noise in the Six-Cylinder A-main, but the race belonged to Scott Ovaska of Marengo, who took advantage of mechanical woes by two different leaders and powered his way to his first win since June 2011. Like Oreskovich, Ovaska started on the outside of row 4, but rather than charge to the front the veteran Sixes driver bided his time until the opportunity presented itself. After DeJay Jarecki’s spin on the initial start of the run, pole-starter Jonathan Popp held off Randy Graham as long as he could before surrendering the lead on lap 2, with Vernon following to second. After another restart a lap later, Bubba Anderson replaced Vernon in the runner-up spot as Graham scooted away.

What looked like a potential walk-away win ended in heartbreak for Graham, when the car coasted to a stop on the front straight with engine woes. Anderson inherited the lead for the lap 5 restart, but his car also gave out a lap later; Vernon was caught behind the slowing leader, and Ovaska charged around the high side to take the lead, which, without another caution-flag slowdown, he built to as much as 1.8 seconds with six laps left.
Jarecki also used the slowing Anderson as a pick to take second, but within two laps Vernon regained the spot, and in two more laps Tiffany Hudack squeezed by Jarecki for third. Vernon pedaled as fast as he could, posting the fastest lap of the race down the stretch at 19.296 seconds, and he trimmed the distance to the leader down to .52 seconds, but Ovaska still had plenty of cushion at the final stripe for the long-overdue win. Forrest Schultz completed the top five.

After a first-lap scramble collected several cars, the WISSOTA Pure Stocks rattled off 12 laps non-stop, with Kyle Copp of Brule recording his second-straight feature win in Ashland. The second-year driver, who chalked up his first career win the Saturday before, came from the inside of the fourth row and followed visiting Ryan Savoy around the pack to the front within the first three laps. Then on lap 5 Copp dove low on Savoy and grabbed the point.

The lead pair pulled away from the rest of the field, with Savoy running in Copp’s tire tracks, while Andrew Hanson slipped around Dylan Shelton and Don Livingston to third. Hanson actually reeled in the leaders over the final eight laps, without the benefit of a caution flag, but Copp fended off the challenges for the win. Shelton and Graham, who had started dead-last on the grid, also claimed top-five paychecks.

Next on the ABC Raceway schedule is the 11th annual “Summer Sizzler” special for the Six-Cylinders, offering an enhanced purse for the unique-to-ABC class, on June 17. The Sixes will also be running in Proctor, MN, on the Friday night before for the first of two special appearances for the division there. Hot laps are at 6:15, followed by green-flag racing at 7 pm. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information log onto the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com. or on race days call (715) 682-4990.

Advance RV Mod Series to Make First-Ever Stop at ABC

June 10th, 2017

Ashland, WI, — Modified racers from throughout WISSOTA are expected to be at the ABC Raceway on Saturday night, as the Bad River Lodge, Casino & Convention Center will present the first-ever visit to the northern Wisconsin oval by the Advantage RV Modified Series.

The touring series for WISSOTA’s “big Mods” is expected to draw upwards of 30 or more entries for the show at Ashland, which will be the third of four races run during the Series’ second leg, known as the “Race to the Hill Swing.” The Series’ schedule is broken into four segments, based on the various weekends that races are run and the proximity of the participating tracks in each segment.

Shane Sabraski of Rice, MN, captured the Series’ opening-night win in Sauk Rapids, MN, on Friday, June 2, and former Red Clay Classic champ Jody Bellefeuille of Duluth, MN, grabbed the win in Oglivie, MN, the following night to compete the first segment.

On Thursday, June 8, the win in Grand Rapids, MN, went to Jeremy Nelson of Alexandria, MN, helping him move to the top of the tour’s points standings as of the conclusion of that program.

As of press time the results were not yet in from Friday night’s show in Superior. The “Race to the Hill” leg concludes on Sunday, June 11, with the prestigious “King on the Hill” special at Proctor, MN.

The Series is in its seventh season, and this year, in addition to the purses offered at the participating tracks for each program, a $10,000 points fund will be paid out to the top 20 qualifying drivers in the final Series standings. A significant number of corporate sponsors are also offering a healthy cache of contingency prizes.

For Saturday night’s show at ABC, a $1,500 check will be awarded to the winner of the Mod feature, while just to start the A-main will earn a driver $200.

Ashland’s Kevin Eder won two features during the 2016 Advantage RV Modified Series tour and finished in the top-ten in final Series points.

All five of ABC’s regular weekly racing divisions will be in action on this night. Defending track champ Neil Balduc of Bessemer, MI, garnered his first win of the season here in the Mod feature last Saturday, while Nick Oreskovich of Mason grabbed his second-straight win in the WISSOTA Super Stocks.

The WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature win went to Highbridge’s Wayne Stricker, while Tiffany Hudack of Ashland joined Oreskovich as a back-to-back winner in the ABC Six-Cylinder class.

Brule’s Kyle Copp became a first-time feature winner in the WISSOTA Pure Stocks at ABC last Saturday night.

Hot laps will start at 6:15 pm, followed by heat races at approximately 7 pm. Adult grandstand admission tickets are priced at just $18 each.

“Z-93 Race Night” will air on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream live on www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Copp Grabs First-Ever Win at ABC

June 7th, 2017

Ashland, WI — Kyle Copp of Brule ran away from the WISSOTA Pure Stock field and chalked up his first-ever feature win on Saturday night at the ABC Raceway. Little Caesar’s Pizza of Ashland presented its popular “Kids’ Meet the Drivers” Night program, and nearly all 87 entrants that had signed in for the PolyDome Dirt Track Series show were parked on the front straightaway of the venerable three-eighths-mile northern Wisconsin oval for a half-hour meet-and-greet session with the many fans in attendance prior to racing action. Drivers and fans also showed that their hearts were with the members of the Cody Kummer family on this night. A pass- the-hat collection taken up by several drivers during intermission on this night raised nearly $1,000, to be donated to Kummer, a WISSOTA Street Stock racer from Medford, and his family in memory of his mother, who was killed in a tragic traffic accident earlier this week.

Copp, the son of former Six-Cylinder and Super Stock star John Copp, started the 12-lap Pure Stock A-main on the inside of the second row, and he took to the low groove after a first-lap restart to get by pole-starter Jeff Christman and fall in just behind early leader Randy Graham. A lap later the sophomore driver moved low again to displace Graham at the point, and from there he paced the field. By mid-race Copp had built a commanding lead, and with four laps remaining he was ahead of Graham and the rest by a full straightaway. But on lap 9 first-nighter James Vendela, running in the top five, got spun around and collected a couple of other racers, bringing out the second yellow flag of the event and drawing the field back to Copp’s trunklid for the restart. This time the leader didn’t get away as easily, as after one more lap back under green Andrew Hanson worked his way by Graham and stayed on Copp’s tail. Over the final two laps, however, Copp pulled away to a ten-length advantage at the checkers for the landmark win. Hanson, Graham, Cory Jorgensen and Christman completed the top five.

Neil Balduc of Bessemer, MI, became the ninth different WISSOTA Modified winner over the first nine features run at WISSOTA’s “Tundra” tracks (ABC and Superior in Wisconsin, and Hibbing, Proctor and Grand Rapids in Minnesota) in 2017. Balduc started on the pole and led all 20 laps for his first ABC win since August 2014. As Balduc outran Brian Mikkonen to take the initial lead, a speedy Jeff Spacek made an aggressive move to the low side in an attempt for fourth place and collected several cars on the opening lap. Spacek’s car suffered race-ending damage, and Balduc quickly opened a lead of nearly two full seconds just three laps after the restart. Mikkonen had all he could handle just to hang on to second, but by lap 3 he had fallen victim to a strong inside move by “big-Mod” rookie Tanner Byholm. Three laps later Paul Niznik also worked his way past Mikkonen, as Balduc extended his lead to well over three seconds. A spin into the infield grass by Al Uotinen’s broken ride slowed the pace, but the 2016 ABC Raceway points champ pressed on after the restart, pushing his lead back to over three seconds again within a few laps. Mikkonen retook second from Byholm on lap 7, and Tanner’s dad Bill Byholm passed him for third on lap 8, bringing Niznik along to fourth. Just a lap after halfway the elder Byholm worked his way by Mikkonen for second, and just as Niznik was about to copy that move in a try for third, Dustin Hudack’s car broke and he dropped into the infield just inside of turn 4 to bring about the final stoppage of the race. Over the final eight laps Balduc fended off Byholm’s challenges and then pulled away to a 1.29-second advantage at the final stripe, while Niznik, a resurgent Tanner Byholm and Rick Rivord completed the top five.

For Nick Oreskovich it was more than just business as usual, as the “Flyin’ Farmer” from Mason flew to his second straight WISSOTA Super Stock feature win in dominant fashion and set a new track record in the process.
Oreskovich started on the outside of row 2 just behind Scott Lawrence, but Lawrence’s car blew the right-front tire in the first corner of the 20-lap feature and slowed, bringing about the first in a rash of caution flags over the first three laps of the race. Oreskovich then restarted alongside Dave Flynn and beat the polesitter through the first turns, but the yellow flag flew for Cory Casari’s spin. Visitor Jim Campbell got by Flynn for second on that redo, but after another lap the run was stopped for debris on the track. Flynn took a measure of revenge by retaking second from Campbell once the show was back under green, and then Campbell and Shane Kisling got together while dueling for third on lap 3 to delay the proceedings again.

Charlie Anderson’s looped ride stopped the race before another lap was scored, and while the yellow lights were on Kisling’s car, which was just a moment before challenging Flynn’s for second, stopped on the track and needed a tow to the pits. Although the first three laps took over 13 minutes to complete, the final 17 took far less than that, as the race ran non-stop from there. Jeff Klopstein worked his way around Flynn for second, but over the remaining laps Oreskovich’s car was on a rail, lapping slower cars by lap 10 and pushing his lead over Klopstein to nearly eight full seconds – almost half a lap – over the final few circuits. Oreskovich’s 15th career ABC feature win included a lap of 16.478 seconds, clipping a full two-tenths of a second off his previous track-record lap for the division. Runner-up Klopstein held a strong margin over Flynn, while Terran Spacek and Casari were not far back in fourth and fifth.

Highbridge’s Wayne Stricker may have bowed out of saying any words in Victory Lane on Saturday, but his sinister-black WISSOTA Midwest Modified did plenty of talking as he scored his fifth career feature win. Stricker started on the outside of row 4 but had moved into the top five well before the mid-point of his 20-lap feature. Veteran Duane Dunbar was impressive early as he dove low on pole-starter Chris Bretting to grab the early lead, and he stayed at the point for a few more laps after Jeremy Lindquist’s lap 2 spin. It was on this restart that Stricker found some room on the upper groove and swept past three cars into fourth. Paul Suzik, who had started the race ninth, also picked his way through the field and took third from Bretting on lap 4, then worked around Ryan Adamzak for second two laps later. Within the same circuit Suzik powered around Dunbar for the lead, and by lap 10 he was a full second-and-a-half up on Adamzak before a stray infield-marker tire slowed the pace. Stricker grabbed second away from Adamzak on the restart, and as he and Suzik were debating the lead Suzik lost the driveshaft on his racer, causing all kinds of rear suspension damage and dropping him from the event. From there Stricker led the final nine laps, although Tyler Vernon stole second from Adamzak on the restart and dogged Stricker to the checkers. Lindquist made an impressive run to fourth, while Marcus Dunbar edged his father Duane for fifth. Ashland’s Tiffany Hudack took advantage of a restart for the second straight weekend and won the ABC Six-Cylinder 15-lap headliner. Hudack worked her way into third place with a pass of Bubba Anderson on lap 2, and she trailed surprising rookie leader John Darwin and Forrest Schultz over the opening few laps. Darwin had stretched his first-ever race lead to 1.66 seconds when, on lap 6, an infield marker tire was bumped onto the racing groove for the race’s only stoppage. Schultz opted for the inside of row 2 for the “Delaware double-file” restart, giving Hudack the chance to sweep around both Schultz and Darwin for the lead. Darwin was able to stay within a car-length of the leader for a few laps, but when a strong-running Graham pulled alongside the rookie to challenge for second, it allowed Hudack to draw away to a .84-second margin of victory. Graham won the battle for runner-up honors, and a last-lap pass gave Scott Ovaska third place over Darwin. Schultz settled for fifth-place money.

Besides Oreskovich, Balduc (Mods, 16.149 seconds), Vernon (Mid-Mods, 17.333 seconds), and Graham (Sixes, 18.523 seconds) also earned fast-lap bonuses.

Several generous race teams, businesses and fans donated bikes and other gifts for giveaways to the young fans on this night. Those donating included Aaron Mashlan Racing, All-Performance Dyno Service, Al Uotinen Racing, Andrew Hanson Racing, Ashland Building Products, D&D Performance Horses, FastLane Motorsports, Foot 46 Racing, George Dalbeck Logging, Hiatt Trucking, Hudack Racing, Jacob Hiatt Racing, Jake Nevala Racing, Jeff Klopstein Racing, Jeff Spacek Racing, Jeremy Lindquist Racing, Lindquist Property Service, Mason-Grand View American Legion Post 516, Matt Deragon Racing, Memorial Medical Center, NAPA Auto Parts, Paul Niznik Racing, Renegade Race Bodies, River Rock Inn & Bait Shop, Second Street Bistro, ServiceMaster Lakeside, Tellers Waste, Tyler Luger Racing, Wick Buildings, and the ABC Raceway.

On Saturday, June 10, the ABC Raceway will welcome the Advantage RV Modified Series to its red-clay oval for the first time ever. The tour is expected to draw nearly all of the top Mod drivers from throughout WISSOTA for a shot at a winner’s check of at least $1,500.

The Series’ stop in Ashland will be part of a four-day tour through the northeastern region of WISSOTA, with stops at Grand Rapids, MN, on Thursday and Superior on Friday before coming to ABC. The tour’s weekend swing will conclude on Sunday at Proctor, MN.

Hot laps are at 6:15, followed by green-flag racing set for 7 pm. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information log onto the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com. or on race days call (715) 682-4990.

Nightmare in the North Woods

June 5th, 2017

20 drivers from the Bumper to Bumper Interstate Racing Association (IRA) Outlaw Sprints made the long tow up to the beautiful ABC Raceway in Ashland, Wisconsin. In qualifying, point leader Scotty Thiel aboard his Professional Plating 64 Machine set a new track record of 12:373. Former track record holder Bill Balog would qualify 2nd followed by Blake Nimee. Justin Henderson behind the wheel of the Thone Motorsports 59H would qualify in 4th and Todd King would round out the top 5.

Heat race one saw 2016 champion Jeremy Schultz use his pole starting position to take the early lead and he would never look back, winning the heat race by more than half a lap over Craig Dollansky. Thiel would come home 3rd in front of 4th finishing Henderson and Russel Borland would bring his Weiss Trucking 23 home in 5th.
Heat race two would see Kyle Marten from outside row 1 take the early lead but Balog was hot on his heels. Marten lead the first 9 laps but Balog would slide him going into turn 3, Marten crossed back under in attempt to grab the win but at the line Balog was victorious by 0.016 seconds over Marten. Kris Spitz brought his 4K machine home 3rd ahead of King. MSA 360 regular Andrew Westphal would complete the top 5.
Heat 3 saw Nimee’s bad luck continue as he jumped the cushion in turn 3 and got into the wall, ending his heat race. Meanwhile, Scotty Neitzel would take the lead over Steve Meyer. Mike Kertscher in his second night with the Thone Motorsports team would muscle his way around Meyer and into 2nd but could not catch Neitzel. When the checkered fell Neitzel would be victorious, followed by Kertscher and Meyer. Minnesota’s Trent Stengl would finish 4th and Dennis Spitz would bring his 41 home 5th.

The feature saw Justin Henderson roll off from the pole and take the early lead. With just a single lap in Henderson jumped the cushion and got into the wall, sending his car upside down bringing out a red flag. Dollansky who suffered some wing damage from the Henderson incident elected not to take his 14aj car to the work area and restarted from the 1st position. On the restart Scotty Neitzel was able to move around Dollansky into the lead, Schultz quickly worked his way from his 5th starting position to 2nd following behind fellow Beaver Dam driver Neitzel. Lap 10 saw Thiel make contact with an infield tire and spin to a stop bringing out the yellow flag. The restart gave Schultz the shot he needed to get around Neitzel and take the lead. As the race wore on Balog had quietly moved from his 10th starting position into 3rd place. As Schultz reached lapped traffic, he had the 2w and 17b breathing down his neck. Balog utilized a lap car to get around Neitzel and set his eyes on Schultz. While Balog kept on Schultz’s tail through lapped cars, King muscled around Neitzel and into 3rd. With just 3 laps to go Balog used a bobble from Schultz to take the lead. The “King of the Sherm Nation” stayed on the bumper of the 17b but could not get back around him. As the checkered flag waved for Balog, a slowing car in turn 4 brought out a yellow flag, causing the race to end under yellow checkers circumstances and revert to lap 29 for the finish. Balog picked up his 4th win in 4 tries at the ABC Raceway, followed by Schultz. Todd King crossed the line in 3rd on lap 29 but an illegally mounted part would result in him being scored last, giving 3rd place to Neitzel followed by Marten in the Oostburg Concrete 99. The Meyer Electric 85m piloted by Steve Meyer would round out the top 5.

Northland Super Stock Series Coming in July

June 3rd, 2017

Ashland, WI, — Three area race tracks will be offering WISSOTA-sanctioned Super Stocks a chance at over $20,000 in purse and bonuses when the third annual FastLane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Series takes place July 21-23. The Series will be held at the AmsOil Speedway in Superior, WI; the ABC Raceway in Ashland, WI; and the Proctor (MN) Speedway, as part of each track’s traditional race-night program during that weekend. The feature races at each track during that weekend will pay $600 to win and at least $70 to start, and the overall three-race Series points champion will earn a minimum of $1,100.

“This area is a hotbed of talented WISSOTA Super Stock drivers, and they deserve a spotlight series to showcase their talents and reward them for that,” explained Proctor Speedway president Dennis McCauley, who is the Series organizer. “We have a ton of great drivers, a lot of generous sponsors, and three tracks that have been incredible in their efforts to work together to host this Series. “This is only the third year for this Series, and already it has become very popular and highly anticipated throughout WISSOTA.”

The Series will kick off on Friday, July 21, at the big, wide four-tenths-mile AmsOil Speedway oval, where straightaway speeds nearing 100 mph are the norm for Super Stocks. The drivers will then continue to the three-eighths-mile ABC Raceway to compete on the lightning-quick red-clay oval on Saturday the 22nd. Finally, the weekend will conclude on the Proctor Speedway’s challenging three-eighths-mile oval on Sunday, July 23, where the Series will crown its third-ever champion. The top ten in final Series points will receive checks out of the generous points fund, which as of the time of this writing is in excess of $12,000. But there are also many bonuses available to the competing drivers, such as the participant non-qualifier bonus, which will pay $125 to all drivers who compete in each of the three race events in the Series but do not make the top ten in points.

Another bonus that will be paid out will be $700 to the driver who can complete a “clean sweep” of all three features during the Series weekend. A “long tow” bonus of $100 will be paid to the drivers who haul the farthest to each of the Series events, and $100 “hard charger” bonuses will be paid out to the drivers who advance the farthest in each of the three Series features, as well as an additional $100 to the overall “hard charger” in the three features combined. Two $250 bonuses will be paid out by random drawings from among those who finish the Series features at each of the three tracks, and two $50 bonuses will be awarded to the top two drivers not to make the feature at each track.

In addition, there will be special monies paid out in memory of a number of racers who have been lost to the local Super Stock racing community in recent years. These include bonuses to honor former racers Darryl Kovach ($112 to the 12th-place finisher in overall series points), Don Koivisto ($33 to the 33rd driver at each track to draw for his/her starting position), and PJ Beeksma ($37 to the 37th driver to draw at each track). Also in memory of Koivisto, the feature at Ashland will be 33 laps in length. The features are expected to be 25 laps each at Superior and Proctor.

In the Series’ inaugural season, Curt Myers of Cameron not only won the points title, but he also claimed the three-feature sweep, for a weekend take of over $3,500. Myers also scored heat wins in each of the three stops on the 2015 tour, as he showed his dominance during that national championship-winning summer. Last summer, Nick Oreskovich of Mason was on pace to match Myers’ feat of the year before, claiming heat and feature wins at Superior and Ashland. But the “Flyin’ Farmer” stumbled at Proctor’s finale with mechanical woes, leaving the door open for Scott Lawrence of Superior to grab the 2016 Series title.

The extensive list of contributors to the purse and bonuses for the third running of the Northland Super Stock Series includes title sponsor FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating, Affordable Chassis, American Family Insurance – Nick Korhonen Agency, AmericInn and Splashland, Ashland Family Restaurant, Ashland Honda-Toyota, Barrel Inn, Benna Ford, Bernick’s Distributing, Bill’s Diesel Repair, Bob’s South Tower Auto, Bullyan RV Center, Culver’s of Superior, Deltco Plastics, Dennis & Cathy Pattee, Duluth-Superior Trophy, Eder Brothers Auto Center, El Dorado Restaurants, Keyport Liquor, Kolar GM, Kom-On-Inn Bar, Lakes Gas and Stone Lake Oil, Len’s Auto Body, Lulich Implement, Midway Sewer & Plumbing, Mikkonen Racing, NAPA Auto Parts, North Country Towing, Northern Clearing Inc, Northern Fitness Solutions, Nummi Jewelers, Oliver’s Service Station, Omer Nelson Electric, Phillips Lanes and 10Pin Racing, Proctor Builders, Rick Gondik Law Offices, Rivord Auto Repair, RJ’s Sport & Cycle, R’s Auto Body, Smooch-a-Pooch, Snap Vinyl Signs, Three Eagles Smoke & Gift Shop, Tim’s Automotive Machine, United Truck Body, Village Lane, Von Holzen Chevrolet-Buick-GMC, and White River Ag Center. “The support from fans, sponsors and race teams has been tremendous,” McCauley stated recently. “We can’t thank them enough.

“But we’re talking to more interested businesses every day. The total purse and bonuses could grow even more between now and the Series weekend.” Updates for the Series will be made available soon on the three tracks’ respective websites and through various media sources.

Balog Wins Fourth IRA Feature at ABC

June 3rd, 2017

Ashland, WI, May 27 — There’s something about the ABC Raceway that Bill Balog seems to like. For the fourth-ever visit to the award-winning northern Wisconsin red-clay oval by the Interstate Racing Association, twenty of the regional touring series’ 900-horsepower winged sprints traveled from five states to compete. And in his fourth-ever visit to the track as part of that tour, Balog, of Hartland, claimed victory at the end of a fast-paced feature that included a wild finish.

Also capturing wins during the PolyDome Dirt Track Series program presented by the NAPA Auto Parts stores of Ashland and Washburn were Nick Oreskovich of Mason in the WISSOTA Super Stocks, Paul Suzik of Ironwood, MI, in the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds, and Tiffany Hudack of Ashland in the Six-Cylinders. All three are first-time feature winners here this season, and ironically all three happen to be defending track champions in their respective classes at ABC. A sizable crowd enjoyed the 85-car show on a comfortably cool late-May evening, with nearly all staying to the end to watch the exciting A-feature for the powerful travelers. After a sloppy first attempt at a start to the 30-lapper, South Dakota’s Justin Henderson shot to the lead from the pole and immediately slipped to the upper groove of the smooth, fast track just ahead of outside front-row starter Kris Spitz. Craig Dollansky, who started directly behind Henderson, moved under Spitz to take second shortly thereafter, bringing two-time IRA champ Scott Nietzel along to third.

Henderson, seeing the Ashland oval for the first time in his career, had a little trouble getting his timing down early, and it cost him – he tagged the turn 3 guardrail hard and rolled his sprinter on lap 2, ending a promising night. Dollansky’s ride grazed Henderson’s during the incident, and although Dollansky restarted at the front of the line, his car became an aerodynamic handful with a badly bent-up roof wing, and he faded through the field under green. Nietzel was first to get past Dollansky, with an inside move just after the restart, and he set sail away from the field by running the high groove. Jeremy Schultz stole second when Dollansky’s car bobbled on lap 3, and two circuits later Kyle Marten slipped past for third. After four more laps, Todd King and Balog had moved up to fourth and fifth.

Scott Thiel, the series’ points leader coming into the weekend, looped his ride on the back straight to end a top-ten run on lap 11, eliminating Nietzel’s straightaway-length lead. From there the event ran off non-stop, and Balog, who originally started eighth, began his climb to the front by using the high road to get around King at the drop of the next green. A lap later he used the same move to sweep past Marten for third, and when Nietzel stumbled ever so slightly on lap 13 Schultz and Balog swarmed in, making for a thrilling three-car battle for the lead. Schultz grabbed the spot for just a moment on lap 15, but during the next circuit Nietzel took it back, with Balog within feet of both. Then, on lap 18, Balog used a daring thread-the-needle move between both Schultz and Nietzel that nearly earned him the point, but Schultz recovered and roared back by.

Balog spent the next nine laps shadowing Schultz through heavy lapped traffic, showing the nose of his car every so often to keep the leader on edge. Finally, with three laps remaining, in a gap in the slower traffic, Balog dropped inside on Schultz and took over the top spot. Although Balog never really pulled away, Schultz had nothing left to challenge for the win. As Balog was taking the checkers, Schultz looped his car in the final corner while contending with a couple of backmarkers, allowing King to wheel by for second with Nietzel in tow. IRA officials were still sorting out the final finishing order at the time of this writing, but Schultz was scored in third ahead of Neitzel and Kyle Marten in the unofficial rundown, while Steve Meyer, 13th-starting Russel Borland, 16th-starting Blake Nimee, Spitz, and Mike Kertscher completed the second five.

Balog explained his move to the front in Victory Lane by saying, “I started to set up where the rubber was (on the track). Then, once I burned off some fuel, I was able to pick and choose where to go.” During time trials prior to the start of racing action, Thiel set a new ABC Raceway single-lap record with a time of 12.373 seconds, equating to 109.109 mph. Thirteen of the 20 IRA drivers topped 100 mph in average lap speed around the three-eighths-mile track during qualifying.

The 20-lap Super Stock feature went green for the first 14 laps, as front-row starters Dave Flynn and Terran Spacek raced door-to-door to start things off. Once Flynn established his hold on the lead two laps in, Oreskovich – who started inside on the second row – worked an outside line to get by Spacek, then stayed there to catch and eventually pass Flynn for the lead on lap 6. Randy Spacek also reaped the benefits of the higher line and swept around his son Terran for fourth on lap 6, and then repeated the move to take third from Shawn McFadden Jr at mid-race.

Oreskovich’s lead had increased to over 1.6 seconds by lap 14 when Aaron Mashlan spun to stop the race for the first time, and on the restart Flynn took a look to the inside in a challenge for the lead. Oreskovich prevailed, but as he came out of turn 4 expecting to see the white flag five laps later, he instead saw the yellow – again, for a Mashlan spin. In a wild green-white-checkered sprint to the finish, McFadden made a quick move to the inside on Flynn on the restart – too quick, as it later turned out. Randy Spacek also put the pressure on Flynn by sweeping high around him to take third, and on the final lap Spacek tried to complete a run on McFadden but fell just short, as Oreskovich held on for his 14th career ABC Raceway feature win. McFadden’s too-soon move on Flynn was deemed an illegal “jump” on the restart, and upon learning of this he bypassed the post-race inspection area, earning him a disqualification and giving Spacek runner-up honors.

Flynn, Terran Spacek and Shane Kisling filled in the top five.

The Mid-Mods struggled to get through their 20-lap main event, but early on the race for the lead was a thriller. Tanner Hicks battled with pole-starter Brandon Copp for the first few laps and through a couple of yellow-flag slowdowns, both for grinding multi-car messes that took out several strong runners. The cautions kept the field close, and Canadian youngster David Simpson, Ryan Adamzak and Suzik all became part of the lead scramble.

The second caution came about after a lap 2 restart, when Adamzak used a strong dive to the inside to try to displace Copp for second; the move bumped Copp into a spin in front of most of the field and sent Adamzak to the back. After that restart Suzik worked inside on both Hicks and Copp to take the lead, and Copp overdrove into the next corner and spun again, this time taking out three other racers.

Wayne Stricker moved up to threaten Hicks for second once the green flag came back out, and he got the spot just before Chris Bretting ran over debris from another car and stopped on the back chute. Two laps later, as Suzik was beginning to extend his advantage on Stricker, rookie McLean Andrews spun and collected Ryan Barningham to slow the pace.

From there Suzik led the field through 14 uninterrupted laps, eventually pulling to a 1.38-second advantage over Stricker for his fourth career feature win here. Hicks held off a determined Simpson for third, and Tyler Vernon took advantage of the long green-flag run to climb from his 15th-place starting spot to fifth.

Hudack overcame some opening-night gremlins and hustled her car to the win in the 15-lap headliner for the Sixes. Opening-night feature winner Bubba Anderson’s car tagged one of the infield marker tires hard during opening lap of the race, knocking him from contention and allowing Hudack to restart second behind pole-starter Dalton Truchon.

Under green she drove to the bottom and beat Truchon through the first turns, and with DeJay Jarecki working the outside line Truchon was displaced to third. Within the next lap a large handful of cars were caught up in a melee in turn 4, and on that restart Hudack and Jarecki pulled away to battle for the win.

Scott Ovaska worked his way past Truchon to third just prior to another marker tire being bumped onto the racing surface. In the green-white-checkered finish that followed, Ovaska passed Jarecki and tried but couldn’t quite pull off a similar move on Hudack, who held on for her ninth career win here by just over a quarter-second. Jarecki came home third just ahead of Tyler Vernon and Truchon.

Fast-lap bonuses were awarded to Oreskovich (Supers, 17.399 seconds), Suzik (Mid-Mods, 17.386 seconds), and Vernon (Sixes, 18.562 seconds).

On Saturday, June 3, Little Caesar’s Pizza will present one of the most popular nights on the ABC Raceway schedule, with its “Meet the Drivers” Night. Fans will be welcomed onto the front-straightaway of the venerable red-clay oval to meet their favorite drivers, collect photos and autographs, and even pick up a treat or two. Hot laps are at 6:15, followed by the meet-and-greet session. Green-flag racing set for a bit after 7 pm.

Adult grandstand admission tickets are $11, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information log onto the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com. or on race days call (715) 682-4990.

ABC Raceway and 141 Speedway Next For Bumper to Bumper Interstate Racing Association

May 25th, 2017

After what was destined to be the biggest weekend for sprint cars in the state of Wisconsin was lost to rain, the Bumper to Bumper Interstate Racing Association is set to get back on the road for another two-day weekend. May 27th the series will make its return to Ashland, Wisconsin’s ABC Raceway. Then on the 28th the IRA will make its first of three appearances at 141 Speedway in Francis Creek, Wisconsin.

Saturday, the fans in the North Woods will be treated to the return of the IRA for the first time this season, and the first appearance at ABC Raceway since 2014. On three occasions the IRA has completed events at ABC, and each time Bill Balog stood victorious at night’s end. Fans will be sure to keep their eyes on the “North Pole Nightmare” as he attempts to keep his perfect record. This year, however, Balog will face his toughest challenge yet on the red clay: series point leader Scotty Thiel. In 2014, his rookie season, Thiel charged from his 8th place starting position to 2nd behind Balog. This year he brings with him seasons of experience and multiple trips to victory lane. Scotty Neitzel has also proven in the past to be a contender in Ashland, as he has recorded two 3rd place finishes and a 5th, making him the only driver besides Balog to record a top 5 on every appearance at ABC Raceway.

On Sunday, the teams head south to the unique 141 Speedway. The high banked 1/3rd mile oval hosted its first IRA event in 2010 and quickly became a fan favorite. Bill Balog has won 8 of the last 10 events at the formerly paved oval. His strongest challenge on Sunday night will likely come from the Meyer Electric 85m piloted by Steve Meyer. Meyer who currently sits 4th in points has shown great speed all season and is always in contention to win at 141 Speedway. Another likely challenge could come from Aurora, Illinois’ Blake Nimee. Nimee’s 79 team has had great speed all year, including setting fast time at Beaver Dam Raceway earlier this year but mechanical issues have plagued the team thus far. With the mechanical gremlins ironed out for this weekend Nimee is sure to be a front runner.

Saturday tickets at ABC Raceway will be $22 for adults and $8 for children with hot laps starting at 6:15. Sunday Pit Passes will be $30 with $20 for grandstand admission.

Article Credit: Gared Tennyson

Wet Week, Cold Forecast Forces ABC to Cancel

May 21st, 2017

Ashland, WI — A miserable week of cold, wet weather combined with an unpleasant forecast has forced track officials to cancel Saturday’s scheduled Salute to the Troops Night at the ABC Raceway.

Nearly six inches of rain, accumulating over the course of the entire week, has turned the three-eighths-mile oval into a quagmire, and with more rain and cool temperatures in the forecast, the Raceway’s Board of Directors had little choice but to call off the five-division PolyDome Dirt Track Series race program, which was to be sponsored by the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce.

“We were discussing the (cancellation) matter as early as Thursday afternoon,” said Raceway Board president Eric Erickson, “and we all came to the same conclusion. With the amount of rain that has hit the area, and a strong chance of more to come, plus the cold temperatures expected, we didn’t think the conditions would make for an enjoyable show for our fans or drivers.”

The award-winning red-clay oval located just south of Ashland will next host the Interstate Racing Association’s 410 “outlaw” winged sprint cars on Saturday, May 27, in a program to be presented by the NAPA Auto Parts stores of Ashland and Washburn.

After a one-year hiatus, the 800-horsepower winged sprinters will make Ashland the tenth of their 35 stops on the southern Wisconsin-based touring series’ 2017 schedule, with speeds of over 100 mph expected to be the norm on the sticky red-clay surface. Billy Balog of Brookfield, the IRA’s all-time A-main victory leader, has claimed each of the three features the series has run at ABC, in 2011, ‘12 and ‘14. The series’ regular annual visit has also been rained out twice, and scheduling conflicts kept the tour from competing in Ashland last summer.

The Raceway’s WISSOTA-sanctioned Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds, plus its Six-Cylinders, will join the sprinters for this special program. Last weekend Shane Kisling of Park Falls captured the Super Stock A-feature, Michael Truscott of Chippewa Falls did likewise in the Mid-Mod main, and Bubba Anderson of Trego led the way for the opening-night win in the Sixes.

Kevin Eder of Ashland (WISSOTA Modifieds) and Andrew Hanson (WISSOTA Pure Stocks) also collected wins in last Saturday’s season opener.

Hot laps will start at 6:15 pm, followed by timed qualifying for the IRA sprints. The racing action is slated to start at 7. For this special event, adult tickets are $22 each, and kids’ tickets will be priced at $8.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live each Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream on www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Eder, Kisling, Truscott, Anderson & Hanson Claim ABC Opener Features

May 17th, 2017

Ashland, WI, — Ashland’s Kevin Eder passed Bill Byholm midway through the WISSOTA Modified A-feature and captured his 25th career win at the ABC Raceway’s 53rd season opener on Saturday night.

With a large crowd braving cool mid-May temperatures to watch, other winners in the Northern State Bank-sponsored PolyDome Dirt Track Racing Series program included Shane Kisling of Rice Lake in the WISSOTA Super Stocks, Michael Truscott of Chippewa Falls in the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds, Bubba Anderson of Trego in the Six-Cylinders, and Andrew Hanson in the WISSOTA Pure Stocks. Eighty-six cars registered for action as the Raceway completed its first season opener as scheduled since 2012.

Eder, who started on the inside of the fourth row for the 20-lap headliner, was one of the drivers gathered up in a four-car collection caused by a check-up by Steve Stuart, who was challenging for third place just a lap in to the event. Up front, a great battle heated up right from the start between veterans Jeff Spacek and Bill Byholm, with Byholm gaining the early advantage.

Defending track champion Neil Balduc, who was also involved in the early fracas, slowed and ground to a stop on the back straight with a flat tire after lap 4 was scored, and Eder restarted fourth behind Byholm, Spacek and Paul Wrazidlo. Spacek took one unsuccessful peek inside to work past Byholm after the restart, and Eder quickly passed both Wrazidlo and Spacek and immediately began multiple attempts to overtake Byholm.

On lap 10 Eder was nearly clear of Byholm, with Spacek right behind, but it took another tour of the fast and smooth three-eighths-mile red-clay oval before Eder was scored in front. Two laps later Dustin Hudack spun to bring about the final yellow-flag slowdown of the night, and from there Eder extended his lead to as much as 1.92 seconds on Byholm at the checkers, setting the high single-lap time for the race at 16.545 seconds in the process.

Wrazidlo, a surprisingly strong Pat Cook, and Steve Lavasseur completed the top five.

Kisling started from the pole and led every lap of the 20-lap Super Stock main event, but the run was not a cakewalk. After a first-lap four-car melee, Kisling held off a determined threat by fellow front-row starter Greg Kuklinski, but when Kuklinski got loosened up as a result of the close-quarters racing for the top seven or so positions he fell back, leaving Jeff Klopstein as the primary challenger for Kisling’s lead.

The lead pair opened up some room on third-running Nick Oreskovich before another two-car spin brought about a lap 4 stoppage. Kisling scooted away to a full-second lead over the next few circuits, and on lap 7 Oreskovich slipped by Klopstein for second. Kisling maintained his lead over the defending track champ until lap 12, when Terran Spacek’s car coasted to a stop on the front stretch.

Oreskovich restarted right on Kisling’s rear bumper but his car would not respond at the drop of the next green, giving second place back to Klopstein. Debris on the back straight stopped the race right away, but after that restart Kisling, hugging the bottom groove, drew away to an eventual 3.17-second win while posting a race-quickest lap of 16.734 seconds. Klopstein held off a determined tenth-starting Shawn McFadden for second, just ahead of Randy Spacek and 11th-starting DJ Keeler.

Only one caution flag slowed the progress of the 20-lap Mid-Mod feature, but that’s all Truscott needed to overtake 2016 division champ Paul Suzik for his sixth overall feature win of the young season. Ryan Adamzak, David Simpson and Tyler Vernon put on a show to start as they swapped the lead often, with the young Canadian Simpson claiming the point on lap 2. But Suzik was also strong early as he slipped past Adamzak to take second after just five laps, while the eighth-starting Truscott stayed right on his tail.

On lap 8 Suzik made an inside move stick to take the lead from Simpson, and Truscott slipped around the high side for second a lap later. The lead pair pulled away to decide the win, with Truscott threatening high and low and Suzik responding to every challenge. Then with five laps to go Mike Jacques, who had just been lapped by the leaders, looped his ride to bring about the lone caution stop.

On the restart Truscott took advantage, coming from the outside of row 2 by choice under the double-file rules to sweep around Suzik and run away to a 1.25-second margin of victory, while posting a race-best 17.037-second fast lap. Wayne Stricker ran a stout race throughout and earned third-place money, while Simpson settled for fourth just ahead of Adamzak.

After a first-lap caution flag for marker tires knocked onto the race surface, Anderson led flag-to-flag from the pole for his sixth career feature win in the Sixes A-feature. Anderson had his hands full early with Randy Graham, while Scott Ovaska fended off Neil Adamzak for third a few lengths back. Once DeJay Jarecki got around Tyler Vernon for fifth, and 2016 division champ Tiffany Hudack followed into sixth, things got tense up front, but Anderson held firm.

Ovaska edged past Graham for second at mid-race, and Adamzak followed suit into third a few laps later, but Dalton Truchon’s lap 10 spin wiped out Anderson’s .81-second lead and shuffled the deck. Graham retook second from Ovaska shortly after the restart, and Jarecki was displaced back to fifth as Adamzak reclaimed fourth, but Anderson was too tough on this night in posting the win.

Jarecki topped all Sixes in the speed chart during the 15-lap run with a lap of 18.250 seconds.

Despite some wild moments, the 12-lap Pure Stock feature ran non-stop, with Hanson running away to his second career win in Ashland. Hanson started on the pole, beat Josh Kallas in a drag race into the first turn, and never looked back.

Chad Carlson slipped into third past Graham during the first lap, with visiting Dylan Shelton copying the move for fourth a circuit later. But Shelton’s car broke loose in an attempt to take third from Carlson, dropping him back and out of the top five temporarily. Carlson not only regained third but also bypassed Kallas for second, but by then Hanson was too far away to catch.

Shelton reloaded and became part of a wild three-car battle for third with Kallas and Kyle Copp, and on lap 8 Shelton again moved past Carlson, this time for second. But again Shelton lost control and slipped back, and with Carlson also slowing Kallas swiped second, bringing Copp to third, and that’s where those two finished behind Hanson. Once more Shelton recovered but could climb no higher than fourth, well ahead of Graham.

In earlier heat-race action, Jake Nevala got caught up in a logjam for second place in his Pure Stock heat race and, with a little help from the other cars involved, his car was rolled onto its side and then its roof. The incident was mild enough that not only was Nevala unhurt, but his car was also able to take the green flag for his feature and run a few laps before dropping out.

Next Saturday, May 20, will be a salute at the Raceway to those who have served in our Nation’s military, in a full five-division program presented by the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce. All active and retired Armed Services personnel showing a military ID will be admitted into the main grandstand free of charge.

Hot laps are at 6:15, with green-flag racing set for 7 pm. Adult grandstand admission tickets are $11, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information log onto the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com. or on race days call (715) 682-4990.

Specials Highlight ’17 ABC Raceway Slate

March 8th, 2017

Ashland, WI — The staff of the ABC Raceway is putting the finishing touches on an action-filled schedule for the 2017 stock car racing season.

When finalized, the 17-event schedule will include four major regular-season special events, a rare Friday night program, and all of the Raceway’s traditional fan-favorite shows, as well as the 42nd annual Red Clay Classic. The ambitious slate will include one first-time stop and one long-awaited return appearance by two long-running regional touring series.

The award-winning three-eighths-mile red-clay oval located just south of Ashland will be the site of the 53rd consecutive season of action under the direction of the all-volunteer Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association, and it will once again present racing under the sanction of the WISSOTA Promoters Association. The schedule will include weekly five-division race programs on every Saturday night but one from mid-May through the end of August, featuring WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds, Super Stocks, Midwest Modifieds and Pure Stocks, as well as the track’s own Six-Cylinder division, before capping off the season with the popular Red Clay Classic invitational in late September.

Making its first-ever appearance ever at ABC will be the Advantage RV Modified Tour, which consists of 12 stops at tracks in South Dakota, Minnesota and Wisconsin, broken into four stages. The visit to Ashland will be part of the second of the stages, known as the “Race to the Hill Swing.” The four-race stage will begin at Grand Rapids, MN, on Thursday, June 8, then continue to Superior on Friday the 9th before its inaugural run at Ashland on Saturday, June 10.

Modified drivers from at least four states and parts of Canada are expected to visit the northern Wisconsin speedplant for a crack at a $1,500 feature winner’s paycheck. The track’s other four regularly-run divisions will also be a part of this special program.

The stage concludes at the prestigious “King on the Hill” event on Sunday, June 11, in Proctor, MN. Mike Stearns of Hecla, SD, is the Tour’s defending champion; Ashland’s Kevin Eder competed in the series on a somewhat regular basis for the first time last year, winning two of the Tour’s 12 events and finishing sixth in the overall standings.

Returning to the ABC Raceway for the first time since 2009, the WISSOTA OneMain Financial Late Model Challenge Series includes 17 premier events at tracks in South Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Iowa. The tour heads into the local area for a three-day visit beginning on Friday, August 11, in Menomonie, and continuing north to Ashland on Saturday the 12th before closing out the weekend on Sunday the 13th in Proctor.

While at ABC the Late Models will compete for a shot at a starting spot in a 40-lap feature, which will pay $2,000 to win. The event should draw nearly all of the region’s big-name Late Model stars, plus quite possibly a few additional drivers from the western and southern reaches of WISSOTA country who have never been here before but will be chasing the Series’ big-money points fund. The headline class will be joined by WISSOTA Modifieds, Midwest Mods and Pure Stocks on this night.

Jake Redetzke of Eau Claire, who claimed his fourth Red Clay Classic Late Model feature win here last October, was the Challenge Series champion in 2016. Redetzke also won in the Series’ last visit to Ashland.

Also returning to the ABC Raceway after a one-year hiatus will be the Interstate Racing Association’s 410 “outlaw” winged sprint cars. The 800-horsepower winged sprinters will stop at Ashland for the tenth of their 35 events on the IRA’s 2017 schedule on Saturday, May 27, and speeds of over 100 mph will be the norm on the sticky red-clay surface.

Billy Balog of Brookfield, the IRA’s all-time A-main win leader, has claimed each of the three features the series has run at ABC, in 2011, ’12 and ’14; the event was rained out twice, and scheduling conflicts kept the tour from competing in Ashland last summer.

ABC’s oval will also be the middle stop for the FastLane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Series, to be held July 21-23. On the Friday of that weekend the third annual running of the Series kicks off at AmsOil Speedway in Superior, and after the stop at Ashland on Saturday the 22nd it culminates at the Proctor Speedway. Curt Myers of Cameron (2015) and Scott Lawrence of Superior (’16) have each collected Series points titles.

The one exception to regular Saturday night racing on the Raceway’s 2017 schedule will be on June 30, when the track will offer a free-admission night to all fans in the grandstands for its five-division race program. On that night fans will be invited to donate to a free-will offering for the annual American Cancer Society “Relay for Life” fundraiser organized by the Raceway and Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland.

The 2017 season kicks off with the May 13 season opener presented by Northern State Bank of Ashland, and it concludes with Championship Saturday Night, presented by Pepsi, North Star Beverage of Hurley, and WIMI 99.7 FM of Ironwood, MI, on August 26. The final schedule will also include popular annual events such as the “meet the drivers” night and kids’ bike races; the “Mid-Mod Madness,” Six-Cylinder “Summer Sizzler” and “Pure Excitement 25″ Pure Stock specials; the Hall of Fame induction ceremonies, and more.

The Raceway will also again offer a Kids’ Club during the 2017 season, with a variety of special activities, gifts and prizes for the younger fans on race nights. More information will be available on these items soon.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live each Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream on www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

ABC Raceway Banquet Honors 2016′s Best

January 28th, 2017

Ashland, WI, — Another full-house crowd of over 230 gathered at the AmericInn in Ashland for the ABC Raceway’s Awards Banquet, celebrating the 2016 stock car racing season and officially crowning its season champions.

A buffet-style meal prepared by Ashland’s Breakwater Restaurant was enjoyed by the drivers, crews, track sponsors and volunteer workers in attendance for the annual event, after which Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association president Eric Erickson took a few moments to congratulate the points champions of the track’s five divisions and paid special tribute to the sponsors, all-volunteer work staff and Board of Directors of the award-winning three-eighths-mile red-clay speedplant.

Event emcee Nick Gima then presented those drivers who finished in the top ten in points in each of the divisions after the 2016 season, as well as others who earned special recognition for their accomplishments. Those in the top ten received trophies, while the divisional champions were also awarded commemorative jackets, and points fund checks were also presented.

Bessemer, MI’s Neil Balduc earned his first-ever ABC Raceway points championship, topping the WISSOTA Modified division by the smallest winning margin of any of the 2016 champs. Despite not winning a feature at Ashland, Balduc used a formula of consistent finishes, including six top-five efforts, for the title.

Five-time track champ Steve Stuart of Ashland was runner-up to Balduc in the final standings, while Bill Byholm of Glidden earned his best points finish in eight seasons by landing third. Defending ABC “big Mod” champ Al Uotinen of Superior and Iron River’s Brian Mikkonen also wound up in the top five in points.

Rick Rivord of Superior was sixth in the Mods, while Scott Hudack of Ashland finished seventh. Six-time track champ Jeff Spacek of Phillips tied with Steve Lavasseur of River Falls for eighth, and Ashland’s Kevin Eder, who led the division in feature wins with four, completed the top-ten.

One season after winning his first-ever points title in Superior, Nick Oreskovich of Mason claimed his first WISSOTA Super Stock championship at his home track. “The Flyin’ Farmer” enjoyed the most successful season of his career here, garnering three feature wins and either second- or third-place runs in five other regular-season A-mains, while also finishing in the top-ten in WISSOTA national points.

Superior’s Scott Lawrence, who has more championships at ABC Raceway than any other driver in its history, finished second to Oreskovich, while Patrick Beeksma of Ironwood, MI, completed a solid transition from the Six-Cylinders to the Super Stocks with a third-place effort. Two-time Pure Stock champ Cory Casari of Montreal was right on Beeksma’s heels in fourth, and Shane Kisling of Park Falls, who won two features here in 2016, took home the fifth-place trophy.

The second five in Super Stock points was led by defending champ Jeff Klopstein of Tomahawk, with Myron Basina of Washburn finishing an impressive seventh, ahead of Terran Spacek of Phillips, Shawn McFadden Jr of Ashland, and Terran’s dad, Randy Spacek of Phillips.

Paul Suzik of Ironwood, MI, was the only driver to successfully defend their track championship from 2015, with his second title in the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds. Suzik chalked up his third career feature win in the track’s WISSOTA Race of Champions qualifier and has now finished in the top-five in points at ABC after each season of his five-year career.

Suzik led a top-ten in Mid-Mod points that hints at an exciting youth movement in the division in Ashland, with second-generation racer Tanner Hicks of Ashland earning a career-best runner-up finish in the points. Ashland’s Ryan Adamzak took his sixth top-four finish in the standings by landing third, Tad Bretting of Ashland finished in the top-ten for the second time in his three seasons of racing, and a surprisingly-consistent Brady Mesko-Jokinen of Mellen earned fifth.

Double-duty driver Eder, who led the division with five heat and three feature wins, took sixth place just three points ahead of young gun Jeremy Lindquist of Ashland, and veteran Wayne Stricker of Highbridge held on to third just ahead of up-and-comers Cole Spacek of Phillips and Bayfield’s Ryan Barningham.

Tiffany Hudack of Ashland, who became the first female driver to ever win a points title at ABC in 2014, won her second after the 2016 Six-Cylinder campaign. Hudack’s season was nothing short of dominant, as she won five of the nine features run during the season and finished second in each of the other four. She duplicated those statistics in heat-race qualifying, winning five and taking second in four others, and finished the season with the largest points margin (51) of the five champions.

Scott Ovaska’s return to racing after two seasons off was successful, as the Marengo native claimed runner-up honors for the second time in his career. Ashland’s Forrest Schultz finished in third, marking his third-straight top-five finish in Sixes points, while Bubba Anderson of Trego ended up as the only other driver in the division to win a feature, taking four of them and teaming up with Steve Martin of Trego for a fourth-place trophy just ahead of Ashland’s DeJay Jarecki.

The second five in Sixes included Adam Traaholt of Ashland; the Spooner-based team of Josh Saunders, Matt Larson and Cory Cook; Lindquist; Joe Newago Jr of Bayfield; and Ashland’s Brendon Ottman.

The 2016 racing season will be one that Justin Weinberger will remember for a long time. The Park Falls youngster not only won his first-ever WISSOTA Pure Stock points championship in Ashland, but he won one in Superior as well, and finished sixth in WISSOTA’s national standings in the division. At ABC, Weinberger won three heats and his third career feature en route to the second-largest winning margin of the season – 41 points.

Runner-up Iron River’s Andrew Hanson won his first career feature at ABC in 2016 and finished in the top-ten in national Pure Stock points. The third-place finish for Brandle Pupp of Ashland was the best of his five-year career. Fourth-place Randy Graham of Trego led the division in heat wins with four, and his class-leading three feature wins were the first of his career. And fifth-place Jeff Christman of South Range finished in the top-ten in eight of the nine features run here last year.

Andy Poll hauled all the way from Two Harbors, MN, to finish sixth in Pure Stock points here, followed by Hayward racers Randy Conner and Brock Beilke, three-time Pure Stock champ Matt Deragon of Ashland, and Don Livingston, also of Ashland.

Lindquist was honored with the track’s Most Improved Driver award, particularly for his efforts in his Mid-Mod, while the coveted Sportsman of the Year award was given to Super Stock driver Don Muzzy of Ironwood, MI. Rookie-of-the-year honors went to Ashland drivers Aaron Mashlan (Supers) and Tyler Hudack (Mid-Mods), Newago (Sixes), and Beilke (Pure Stocks); there were no qualifying rookies in the Modifieds.

Erickson presented the annual President’s Award to Kurt Beeksma, the former Raceway president who guided the organization to become nationally recognized as one of the most successful in short-track racing. Erickson also handed out “Valuable Volunteer” awards by recognizing Roberta Hudack, Donna Hmielewski-Kurilla, Tom Adamzak, Brandon Bowers and Jeremy MacArthur for their long-time contributions and hard work behind the scenes at the track.

A generous giveaway of door prizes and deejay-provided music rounded out an enjoyable evening for all in attendance.

The 2017 stock car racing season at the ABC Raceway is set to begin in mid-May with a very ambitious and highly anticipated schedule, details of which will be released soon. 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, www.abcraceway.com .

Redetzke, Anderson Repeat as Red Clay Classic Champs; Richards, Flynn are first-time winners

October 4th, 2016

Ashland, WI — Jake Redetzke of Eau Claire overtook John Kaanta in heavy lapped traffic and held on for his fourth Red Clay Classic WISSOTA Late Model feature win in the past six years on Saturday night at the ABC Raceway.

The 41st annual running of 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, also resulted in a third RCC title – and second in the WISSOTA Modifieds – for Ashley Anderson of Elk Mound, while Tommy Richards of Mondovi (WISSOTA Super Stocks) and Dave Flynn of Superior (WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds) each became first-time champions.

While Saturday’s portion of the program started off in bright sunshine and temperatures in the mid-60s, once the sun went down the weather cooled quickly, creating a fast race track and lots of horsepower, but also dense fog. In fact, at one point during the Midwest Mod feature the race had to be stopped for over 40 minutes while a heavy fogbank settled over the immediate area. However, once the fog lifted the show resumed, although a rearrangement of the remaining race schedule was made.

The 50-lap, $4,000-to-win Late Model headliner was moved up on the program to immediately follow the Mid-Mods, and the 26-car field of top-level drivers responded by clicking off the 50-lap event in less than 17-and-a-half minutes, slowed only once early in the run. Outside front-row starter Kaanta outran polesitter Travis Budisalovich through the first corner and set sail to a 1.2-second lead after just five laps, while Redetzke, who started behind Kaanta, challenged Budisalovich, along with Pat Doar and Lance Matthees.

The lone yellow flag of the race was thrown on lap 5, for a minor scuffle involving Jeff Provinzino, Tom Naeyaert and Lance Hofer. From there the race ran without a hitch, with Matthees making an outside move stick to take fourth from Doar on the restart.

Redetzke got by Budisalovich for second on the very next circuit, and then he tried a drive to the inside on Kaanta in a bid for the lead, only to be denied. On lap 8 Budisalovich joined the fight for the lead, running alongside Redetzke while the pair raced only inches off of Kaanta’s rear push bar. A distance behind the lead trio were a pair of very entertaining battles for position, with Doar challenging Matthees for fourth, and AJ Diemel and Nick Anvelink heavily debating sixth.

On lap 12 Budisalovich tried an inside move on Kaanta, but the two cars bumped hard, lifting Kaanta’s car off the ground for a moment. That left the bottom lane wide open and Redetzke took full advantage, slipping into the lead and driving away to a second-and-a-quarter advantage within just three quick laps. His pace put him into slower traffic by lap 21, though, and Kaanta and company were able to reel in the leader just after mid-race.

Redetzke got caught up trying to put a backmarker a lap in arrears, allowing Kaanta enough room to work his way by for the lead on lap 28. Redetzke got back to even with Kaanta’s door a lap later, but the 2006 RCC champ surged ahead to a half-second margin within a couple more circuits.

On lap 34, however, Kaanta’s bid for a second Classic title ended when Redetzke worked his way by on the low side in traffic for the winning pass, while Matthees, Budisalovich and Diemel followed in close formation over the next couple of tours. While Redetzke held his line patiently behind slower cars, Matthees made things interesting over the closing laps by cutting Redetzke’s lead to just four-tenths of a second – not much more than a car-length – at the checkers, while Budisalovich, Diemel and Kaanta trailed nose-to-tail behind him.

Terry Lillo headed up the second five, ahead of 2013 champ Anvelink, ’08 winner Harry Hanson, two-time winner Steve Laursen, and six-time RCC champ Jimmy Mars, who used his defending champion’s provisional and started 25th of the 26. Anvelink set a new Late Model track record by recording the fastest lap of the race at 15.480 seconds (87.209 mph).

The Modified main event looked to be another fast-paced affair, with only two stoppages over the first 30 of the event’s 35 scheduled laps. However, the intensity increased over the closing laps, keeping Anderson from potentially running away to a dominant win, even though he did lead from green to checkered.

Anderson started alongside polesitter Steve Stuart on the front row and flew to a 1.23-second lead on Stuart and Mike Anderson by lap 3. Deep in the field there was plenty of two- and even three-wide racing on the smooth, sticky three-eighths-mile red-clay oval, but drivers did a masterful job of keeping the race under the green flag.

As the leader continued to increase his advantage, Stuart drew away from a great battle for third between Mike Anderson, Kevin Eder and 12th-starting Jake Hartung, who was on a charge. Behind them David Baxter and Kelly Estey led a tightly-packed group of cars dicing for positions. On lap 12 Hartung made a strong move below Mike Anderson and Eder into third, while 16th-place starter Paul Wrazidlo slipped past Estey into sixth a lap later.

The first slowdown of the run came about not because of heavy contact in traffic, but because of Joey Jensen’s stalled race car on lap 16, eliminating Ashley’s 2.4-second lead. Hartung took advantage and grabbed second away from Stuart a lap after the restart, but Anderson continued his march by pushing his lead to over a second again by lap 19.

On lap 21 Wrazidlo surprised everyone in the beyond-capacity crowd by driving low on Stuart into third. A couple of laps later Jay Richardson’s spin brought the field back to Anderson’s bumper, but again he got away by running a smooth line through the middle of the slick corners.

Dave Cain, who started 14th on the grid, took fifth away from Mike Anderson just after the restart and fourth from Stuart on the next go-around, while Wrazidlo threw every move he could at Hartung over the next handful of laps in an effort to wrestle the runner-up spot away. Stuart regrouped and, along with Estey, ganged up to retake their top-five spots from Cain on lap 26, and on lap 28 Wrazidlo saw an opening and slipped to the inside to challenge Hartung again.

On lap 30 the complexion of the race changed drastically when contact between Hartung and Wrazidlo sent Wrazidlo spinning; Hartung was sent to the back of the field for the incident. Stuart, now third, tried to overtake Wrazidlo for second on the restart, but Paul Niznik’s spin negated that move. On the next try at green-flag racing Jeff Tardy spun, and on that subsequent restart 22nd-starting Darrell Nelson took over fifth. Steve Lavasseur’s stalled ride slowed the pace on lap 31, and Stuart grabbed second from Wrazidlo prior to Tardy’s get-together with Brian Mikkonen to stop the race again on lap 33.

Just after the after the green-white-checkered re-do Nelson took fourth from Estey, and then he displaced Wrazidlo for third with the white flag in the air. But Anderson had the field covered and claimed his second Red Clay Classic title in a Modified and third overall by a winning margin of .495 seconds over Stuart. After Nelson, Wrazidlo and Cain in the top five, Estey, 24th-starting Jeff Broking, 20th-starting Jared Loos, Mike Anderson and Rick Niemi completed the top ten.

Ashley Anderson also posted the fastest lap of the race in a time of 17.307 seconds, for an average speed of 78.003 mph.

The Super Stock feature closed out the race program, but it also provided some excellent side-by-side racing for positions at the front of the field. Flynn’s sixth-starting racer stalled right at the drop of the green flag, forcing most of the 25-car field to dodge to avoid contact and ending his chance at a two-win weekend. Then, three laps after the restart, front-row starting mates Jim Campbell and Shawn McFadden Jr bumped and slowed, allowing Richards to slip quickly into the lead.

Richards paced every lap from there, although not without challenge. He was a few lengths ahead of a three-wide dogfight between Campbell, McFadden and Ben Hillman for second, and on lap 7 McFadden and Hillman cleared Campbell and brought Eric Olson along to fourth, leaving Campbell to contend with 2016 ABC Raceway points champ Nick Oreskovich. Richards had built up a 2.25-second lead on McFadden on lap 13, with Olson taking third, when 2014 RCC winner Kevin Burdick got loose and tagged Mikkonen, forcing the latter to spin on the front straight to bring about the first of the race’s four caution-flag slowdowns.

Olson immediately pulled alongside Richards’ right-side door panel on the restart in an effort to grab the lead – a move he would repeat on each of the remaining restarts as well – but Richards’ car was too strong coming off of the bottom of the corners. By lap 19 the leader had re-established a half-second advantage, while Olson was left to fend off Oreskovich for second, and the lead was up to a full second on lap 23 when the yellow flag was thrown for debris.

Richards fought off Olson’s challenge again for another lap before Don Muzzy’s spin stopped the run, and then, after Scott Lawrence and defending race champion Shane Kisling moved by McFadden and Hillman into the top five, Richards staved off Olson for a couple more laps before a three-car tussle brought about another delay. The fog began to roll back in over the final four laps of the 2016 season, and Oreskovich slipped by Olson for second with two laps remaining.

Richards, whose previous best effort at the Classic was a 12th-place finish in 2012, scored his first-ever feature win on Ashland’s red-clay oval, worth $2,000, just .298 seconds ahead of Oreskovich. Olson came home third, followed by Kisling and national points leader Curt Myers, who started 21st after rushing home Friday to replace a damaged motor and transferring via a B-main win.

Lawrence, the 14-time ABC track champ, led the second five, ahead of McFadden, Mikkonen, first-time visitor Simon Wahlstrom, and 19th-starting Keith Kern. Olson’s lap of 18.036 seconds (75.850 mph) was the fastest circuit of the 30-lap run.

The Midwest Modified 25-lap feature kicked off the big-money portion of the program, but the event had more than its fair share of issues – driver-induced and otherwise. No fewer than 12 yellow-flag slowdowns, along with the afore-mentioned fog, dragged the total race time to over an hour-and-a-half.

To add to the peculiarity of the event, a father-son pairing was involved in each of the first two stoppages. Veteran Duane Dunbar tagged and spun his boy Marcus’s car on the initial start, and then Marcus “returned the favor” (though not intentionally) four laps later for the second delay, collecting Alex Smith in the process.

During that first four laps polestarter Denny Cutsforth – making his first appearance at the Classic – held off defending race winner Grant Southworth, while Flynn raced a determined Mack Estey for third, and Mack’s brother Skeeter Estey challenged Eder for fifth. After the second restart Flynn, the Estey brothers and Eder raced four-wide for third, but the excitement was tempered when track champion Paul Suzik looped his ride.

Flynn worked his way inside against Southworth on the restart to take second, and on lap 6 the pair ganged up on Cutsforth, with Southworth taking the lead. But two tours later Flynn made what turned out to be the winning move with another low-lane pass. Mack Estey got by Cutsforth for third during lap 9, and on the next lap the race was slowed for Smith’s spun car.

That’s when the race was red-flagged due to the heavy fog. Track officials, with concerns for driver safety, allowed each team to bring a pit-crew member onto the track with a fresh supply of visor “tear-offs” for each racer’s helmet.

After the long delay, Darrel Hazelton’s loose car collected a couple of others on the restart, and after Tanner Byholm took fourth from Cutsforth on the next green light, Southworth challenged Flynn with an outside move. But Cutsforth’s spin on lap 12 ended his great weekend and temporarily nullified Southworth’s threat.

A Tyler Hudack spin, two-time RCC winner Shane Halopka’s stalled car, and Dale Suomala’s damaged ride kept the pace at a crawl, but during a two-lap green-flag run Skeeter Estey found some room on the high side and swept past Byholm into fourth. Hazelton’s blown motor forced a brief delay for a clean-up in turns 3 and 4 on lap 18, and Flynn nearly gave up his dream run a lap after the restart when he bobbled coming out of turn 2, but Southworth wasn’t close enough to take advantage.

Skeeter Estey continued his charge to the front by flying around his brother Mack for third with five laps to go, just before the last delay of the run came about due to a Wayne Stricker-Nick Koehler get-together. Southworth tried to go high in an effort to get around Flynn with the white flag in the air, but the young ABC Raceway weekly competitor stayed true to his pace and collected his third win of the year at ABC with the landmark win. Southworth, who set the fast lap of the race at 17.402 seconds (77.577 mph), was only .825 seconds back at the checkers, while Skeeter edged Mack for an Estey family 3-4 finish.

Byholm was fifth, while 2014 winner Michael Truscott, 16th-starting Koehler, and 24th-starting Cody Carlson came home sixth through eighth. Marcus Dunbar held off his father Duane for ninth.

On Friday two Mid-Mod drivers ended up on their roofs as a result of roll-overs. During the weekend’s first set of hot laps, Canadian veteran racer Don Craig got caught up with a couple of other cars and rolled his ride over, although he was able to make repairs and run in his heat race later. Then, during his heat Willy Thompson’s left-front wheel caught an infield-marker tire, putting the car up on its nose before flipping over. Neither driver was injured in their respective crashes.

Several businesses and individuals organized and contributed to bonus programs and contingencies to make this year’s Classic more interesting for both the racers and fans. Along with the $150 fast-lap bonus presented in each A-main by Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland, a “hard-charger” bonus of $125 per feature was paid out by Arctic Ice of Ashland to the drivers who advanced the most positions from start to finish. The hard chargers for each division were Mars (Late Models), Nelson (Mods), Myers (Supers) and Carlson (Mid-Mods).

The top-finishing RCC rookie in each feature received a $100 bonus, thanks to Lake Shore Cafe of Ashland. The top rookie drivers included Swedberg (Late Models), Wahlstrom (Supers), and Tyler Schrenk (Mid-Mods), who traveled for his first-ever visit to the northern Wisconsin speedplant from Ypsilanti, ND.

Kyle Bernhoft worked with the Raceway to create an online “Fans’ Choice” provisional ballot, where race fans could cast votes via the track’s website to award drivers starting positions in their feature fields had they not otherwise qualified. After over 2,500 ballots had been cast, Hofer (Late Models), Lavasseur (Mods), Matt Koski (Supers), and Smith (Mid-Mods) received those provisionals.

Champ Pans of Eau Claire and SSR Race Cars of Spring Valley combined to provide each of Friday’s heat winners with commemorative t-shirts, and Champ Pans also handed out heavy-duty shop mats to various heat race winners based on random drawings.

North Star Beverage of Hurley offered a “Pepsi Challenge” to drivers in Friday’s heat races if they could win from either the pole or from the tail of the field, based on the original starting line-ups. While no driver was able to win the $50 bonus from the back, Eder in the Mods, Campbell in the Supers, and Cutsforth in the Mid-Mods each collected an extra $25 for winning their respective heats from the pole.

Eder, with the help of Neighborly Bar of Ashland, collected over $2,600 from drivers, fans and local businesses for the “Bridesmaid’s Challenge” fund, which was split equally among the second-place finishers in each of the four features if they agreed to wear a formal gown for post-race photos in Victory Lane. All four drivers agreed to participate, and in doing so each of the four runners-up took home larger paychecks than did the feature winners – quite possibly a first in WISSOTA history.

A total of 194 entries representing four states and Canada competed, including 38 Late Models, 44 Modifieds, 50 Super Stocks and 62 Mid-Mods. Despite the huge field, Friday’s heat race action was completed in well under three hours, while Saturday’s program was completed in just over six hours, due in large part to the weather delay. The perfectly-prepared racing surface provided three- and sometimes four-wide racing for the fans to enjoy.

The Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association wishes to thank the many individuals and businesses who contributed so many man-hours, 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 2017; more information will be made available on the Raceway’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Generous Purse, Bonuses Await Drivers at 41st Red Clay Classic

September 11th, 2016

Ashland, WI,– Racers competing in the 41st annual Red Clay Classic will have lots of opportunities to put some extra cash in their pockets.

The ABC Raceway will host the Northland’s traditional season finale for stock car racing on Friday and Saturday, September 30-October 1, with upwards of 200 or more WISSOTA-sanctioned Late Models, Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds expected to compete from as many as five states and Canada. The popular PolyDome Dirt Track Series event will once again be presented by FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating of Ashland and Tim’s Automotive Machine of Bloomer.

Foremost among those money-making opportunities for the competitors is, of course, a favorable purse. A payout of over $86,000 has been set up for the drivers, making the weekend one of the biggest-paying specials in all of WISSOTA.

The payouts for each of the four features is impressive. Just to qualify for the Midwest Mod 25-lap A-main will pay a minimum of $150, while the driver who finishes first will collect a $1,000 paycheck. The Super Stock feature winner will collect $2,000 after 30 laps, but just making the feature line-up will pay at least $250. All starters in the Modified main event will receive a minimum of $350, while a $3,000 check awaits the winner after 35 laps of hard work. And in the big 50-lap Late Model headliner the winner will have earned his $4,000 prize, although the offer of $450 to start the race isn’t too bad.

Bonuses have become a huge part of racing invitationals in recent years, and sponsors often step up in big ways to offer drivers great opportunities to make a few extra dollars. This year’s Classic is no exception.

Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland will again present a “Fast Lap” bonus. The drivers who post the fastest timed laps during each of the four features, based on the Raceway’s electronic scoring and timing system, will receive a $150 bonus added to their paychecks.

Two new sponsors have jumped on board to help with this year’s Red Clay Classic. Arctic Ice of Ashland will present a “Hard Charger” bonus for each of the feature races, paying the drivers who advance the most positions from their original scheduled starting spot to their official finishing position an additional $125. And Champ Pans of Eau Claire, primary sponsor of last year’s Late Model feature Jake Redetzke, has contributed to promote the heat races for the Late Models.

The Board of Directors of the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association recently announced that the draw fee for all drivers registering to compete at this year’s Red Clay Classic has been waived. Drivers will need only pay the $65 pit-pass fee in order to compete during the race weekend, saving drivers from $40 to $90, depending on the class being run.

Other bonuses and promotions are in the works, according to Raceway president Eric Erickson. “We are thinking up some special race opportunities for our visitors from each state represented as well as for our Canadian friends,” Erickson recently hinted. “We want to come up with ways to show our appreciation for all drivers who travel to our track to be a part of this special show.”

One of the most popular promotions at the track in recent years has been the “Bridesmaid’s Challenge,” offering a bonus to the second-place finisher in each feature if they agree to wear a formal gown in Victory Lane during their post-race interviews. Details on this and other bonus programs are should be announced soon.

Reserved grandstand seating with two-day passes, primitive camping sites on the Raceway property, and reserved pit spots for this year’s Red Clay Classic are still available to the general public. For information on seats and tickets or campsites, fans can call (715) 682-2672 Monday through Friday (evenings only) or send an e-mail to tickets@abcraceway.com. Reserved pit spots are available by calling (715) 746-2390 (evenings) or by e-mailing to tickets@abcraceway.com.

Other primitive camping is available on the privately-owned property adjacent directly east of the Raceway on a first-come, first-served basis.

Prior to each night’s race program, “Z-93 Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live from the Raceway on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com. Broadcast times will be
announced soon.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. A complete purse breakdown and additional event information is available on the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com. Information on accommodations and various goings-on during the race weekend in the Ashland area is available online at www.visitashland.com.

Drivers’ Draw Fee Waived for 41st Red Clay Classic

September 5th, 2016

Ashland, WI — WISSOTA’s invitational season is just kicking off, but that means the 41st annual Red Clay Classic is only a few short weeks away.

The traditional season finale for stock car racing in the Northland, to be presented by FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating of Ashland and Tim’s Automotive Machine of Bloomer, is scheduled for Friday and Saturday, September 30-October 1, at the ABC Raceway, and it will feature WISSOTA-sanctioned Late Models, Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds competing for a purse currently in excess of $86,000. Upwards of 200 or more racers are expected to be in attendance, making the event one of the biggest PolyDome Dirt Track Series events in all of WISSOTA.

As one of the longest-established and most highly-anticipated short-track race events in the Upper Midwest, the Classic has also been one of the most successful shows in the region in recent years. So, for the 2016 edition, the Board of Directors of the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association agreed that it couldn’t hurt to “share the wealth” with some of those who have made the event so special.

“We are happy to announce that we are waiving the draw fee for all drivers registering to compete with us at this year’s Red Clay Classic,” Raceway Board president Eric Erickson proudly proclaimed last week. “Our track has benefitted from some tremendous crowds and excellent car counts over the past couple of years (for the Classic), and the Board felt that it needed to show its appreciation.

“By waiving the draw fee we hope to entice even more drivers to come to the Classic, and that in turn should give our fans one of the best race programs of the season.”

All drivers, regardless of division to be run, will need only pay the pit-pass fee in order to compete during the race weekend. The fee for all drivers and crew members to gain access to the pits will be $35 for each night, or $65 for a two-day pass.

A limited number of reserved seats, camping sites and pit spots for this year’s Classic are still available to the general public.

Adult grandstand tickets will be available at the gate on Friday for just $20, while on Saturday tickets will be priced at $25; however, adults can purchase a two-day pass for just $40. For kids ages 6-12 tickets are $12 each night, while a two-day kids’ pass is just $20. Young fans ages 5 and under are admitted free each night, but only when accompanied by a paid adult.

A reserved seat can be purchased with any two-day pass for an additional $10; reserved seats are not available with single-day ticket purchases.

Primitive camping sites on the Raceway grounds are available for $30 for the weekend. There is also camping available on the privately-owned property to the east of the track, but only on a first-come, first-served basis; no reservations are available through the Raceway for those sites.

To buy tickets or to save a seat or campsite, fans can call (715) 682-2672 Monday through Friday (evenings only) or send an e-mail to tickets@abcraceway.com. Reserved pit spots are just $30 each and are available by calling (715) 746-2390 (evenings) or by e-mailing to tickets@abcraceway.com.

Friday’s Red Clay Classic schedule includes access to the grandstand parking and pits at 1 pm, the grandstand ticket window opening for business at 3, hot laps starting at 5:30, and heat-race action getting the green flag at 7 pm. For Saturday, the track and pit gates will open at noon and the grandstands at 2, while racing starts at 5 pm with last-chance semi-feature action before the four big-money feature races.

Other tentative activities include music and dancing at the track on Friday night, a scramble golf tournament on Saturday morning, and special sales throughout the Historic Downtown Ashland business district, plus additional activities throughout the community.

Prior to each night’s race program, “Z-93 Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live from the Raceway on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com. The broadcast times will be announced soon.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. Additional event information is available on the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com. Additional information on the community is available by visiting www.visitashland.com.

2016 ABC Raceway Season Ends with Rained-Out Program

August 31st, 2016

Ashland, WI, — It’s not the way the officials at the ABC Raceway wanted to end the 2016 regular racing season, but another day of rainy weather forced their hand into cancelling “Championship Saturday Night.”

The WISSOTA PolyDome Dirt Track Series program, set to be presented by Pepsi, North Star Beverage of Hurley, and WIMI, 99.7 FM, of Ironwood, MI, would have included the crowning of the Raceway’s 2016 divisional points champions. The program was to also include the once-already-postponed 13th annual “Pure Excitement 25″ special for WISSOTA Pure Stocks, to be presented by the Ashland-Bayfield County Sportsmen’s Club.

With the cancellation of the final two race nights of the summer, the track champs end up being those drivers who led the points standings after the August 13 show.

Neil Balduc of Bessemer, MI, wins the WISSOTA Modified title by the slimmest of the winning margins at the track this season – a mere six points over Ashland’s Steve Stuart. It is Balduc’s first career points title in only his fourth season in the “big Mods” and seventh season of racing at ABC overall.

The WISSOTA Super Stock crown will belong to Mason’s Nick Oreskovich, whose final points advantage over Scott Lawrence of Superior was 23. Oreskovich won this division’s points championship at AmsOil Speedway in Superior in 2015, but this is his first title at his home track.

Paul Suzik winds up being the only driver to successfully defend his title here. The fifth-year driver from Ironwood, MI, finishes 23 points ahead of Tanner Hicks of Ashland in the final WISSOTA Midwest Modified standings.

Ashland’s Tiffany Hudack made ABC Raceway history in 2014 as the first female driver to win a division title here, and now she has her second, both in the ABC Six-Cylinder class. Hudack’s 51-point advantage over Scott Ovaska of Marengo was the largest among the five divisional leaders after the August 13 show.

Justin Weinberger of Park Falls raced to his first career points championship in Superior on Friday night, but on Saturday the weather helped him nail down his second title. The second-year driver from Park Falls used a healthy 41-point lead over Andrew Hanson of Iron River to score the 2016 WISSOTA Pure Stock crown.

The “Pure Excitement 25″ will not be run in 2016; however, organizers of that event will be contacting those who have contributed to the special event’s purse to see if they would like their donations returned or leave the contributions in the fund for the 2017 version of the race.

Next up for race fans at the award-winning three-eighths-mile northern Wisconsin oval is the 41st annual Red Clay Classic, presented by FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating of Ashland and Tim’s Automotive Machine of Bloomer, on September 30-October 1. Upwards of 200 WISSOTA Late Models, Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Mods will be competing for their share of a purse currently set at over $86,000, during the traditional season finale for stock car racing in the Northland.

More information on the Red Clay Classic will be made available in the weeks to come, in this publication and on the Raceway’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road.

Wet Weather Forces ABC ‘Pure Excitement 25′ Postponement

August 23rd, 2016

Ashland, WI, – Two days of steady rains and a disappointing forecast forced the hand of the officials at the ABC Raceway to cancel Saturday’s race program.

The WISSOTA PolyDome Dirt Track Series program was to include the 13th annual “Pure Excitement 25″ special for WISSOTA Pure Stocks, to be presented by the Ashland-Bayfield County Sportsmen’s Club. At press time, the fan-contribution purse had reached over $5,100, with a check of nearly $1,300 ready to be awarded to the winner of the division’s 25-lap feature.

The Raceway staff hopes to reschedule the event, with details forthcoming later this week. More information on the Sportsmen’s Club’s raffle drawing, which was set to be held at the track on Saturday, will also be released later this week.

The Raceway will host its “Championship Saturday Night” season finale on August 27. During the race program, to be presented by Pepsi, North Star Beverage of Hurley, and WIMI, 99.7 FM, of Ironwood, MI, the 2016 season champions will be determined.

Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, and the first green flag should fly at 7. Adult tickets are $11, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream live online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information visit the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com, or call the track on racedays

ABC to Host 13th ‘Pure Excitement 25′ on Saturday

August 19th, 2016

Ashland, WI — The division the runs for the least amount of money during the regular season at the ABC Raceway will be running for the biggest purse of the night on Saturday.

The 13th annual “Pure Excitement 25″ special event, to be presented by the Ashland-Bayfield County Sportsmen’s Club, will put the spotlight on WISSOTA Pure Stocks, the track’s entry-level division, with the possibility of over $1,000 to be paid out to the feature winner.

The event has become enormously popular during its existence, with several drivers who do not regularly race in Ashland trying their hand at the award-winning three-eighths-mile red-clay oval, and at times taking the big paychecks away from the locals. Twin Ports visitors like Tom Morinville, Dan Larsen and Ron Christman have claimed the winner’s share in this event – for Larsen, it was his first-ever career feature win at any track.

Drivers like Dustin Follett, Al Rapp and Michael Blevins have traveled even further to race in the “PE25,” with their efforts paying off. And last year Shawn Amundson drove all the way from Barron to become the 11th straight different winner of the race.

Only current WISSOTA Super Stock hotshoe Cory Casari is a repeat winner of the event, having won the first two in 2004 & ’05. The unique slant on the event is the purse. The Raceway starts by posting a $3,425 payout – nearly triple that of a typical race night – topped by a $500 first-place check. Race fans, businesses and other racers are then invited to add to the purse, contributing as much as they want to whatever finishing position they desire. By feature time the purse and winner’s share could grow by half again as much or more, thanks to the generosity of the local racing community.

The event’s largest total purse paid out was $5,890, for the 2013 edition. The largest winner’s check written – a whopping $1,413 – was handed to Blevins after his 2014 win. In addition to the on-track action – which will also include a full slate of races for the WISSOTA Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds, plus the ABC Six-Cylinders, as well as the Pure Stockers – the Sportsmen’s Club will be selling tickets as part of their annual fundraising raffle, and the drawings for the prize winners will take place during intermission at Saturday’s races. The fundraiser provides additional funding to help the Club with its various hunting and fishing safety education programs, along with other activities that the Club organizes for area outdoors enthusiasts.

And with just two regular-season race nights remaining, the on-track action should be more exciting than usual, as drivers jostle for as many points as possible with the final championship standings still to be decided in all five divisions.

The Raceway’s live pre-race radio program, “Z-93 Race Night,” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information. Adult tickets are just $11 each, and kids ages 12 and under are admitted free with a paid adult admission.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on anytime to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Hall of Fame Class of 2016 Honored at ABC

August 17th, 2016

Ashland, WI — On Saturday night the ABC Raceway introduced its 2016 Hall of Fame inductees to a large, appreciative crowd at the award-winning red-clay oval.

The nine new inductees – four retired drivers, four in the Volunteer & Contributor category, and one honorary selection – were honored on trackside during intermission of the August 13 program, joined by family, friends and fans.

In the Drivers category, the inductees included Mel Ferguson, Jerry Hartman, Johnny Johnson and Ron Weinberger.

During Ferguson’s racing days at ABC he collected 13 feature wins – all in the WISSOTA Modifieds, including two at the Red Clay Classic, in 1994 and ’98, and he earned his lone points title here in 1995. He also contributed to the track with his business, which installed the septic system for the new grandstand-side restroom building. His unique-looking cars, his personable style, and his genuine support of the ABC Raceway made him a fan favorite for years.

Hartman’s 35 total feature wins is 12th-best all-time at the track, including his Red Clay Classic WISSOTA Super Stock win in 1994. The following season he moved into the Mod class, where he won 25 of those 35 features – the 5th-highest total in that division – and two track championships, in 1999 & 2001. His crowd-pleasing driving style was all-out – he drove with a “checkers or wreckers” edge and only wanted to win.

Johnson was one of the area’s great drivers in the late 1960s and into the ’70s. His 32 total feature wins is 13th-best all-time, and all came in Late Models, which makes him the track’s win leader in that division. He won the first two Late Model features ever run in Red Clay Classic history – in 1976 & ’78 – and he was a two-time ABC Raceway Late Model points champion, in 1972 & ’74. He collected many more wins at his home tracks in Proctor, MN, and Superior.

Weinberger scored 20 total feature wins – all in the Street and Hobby Stock divisions. He won seven of those features during the 1987 season alone, helping him gain the first of his two Hobby Stock titles; the other came in 1979. He also helped the track during his racing days by donating large barrels from his workplace that the Raceway used for trash barrels. He spent some time away from racing after he retired from the sport, but today he helps his grandson Justin with his driving career.

The inductees honored in the Volunteer / Contributor category were recognized for their significant positive contributions to both the Raceway and to the sport in general. They included Kurt Beeksma, Dawn & the late Ray Berglund, Don & Alice Hudack, and the late Rudy and Lorraine Marincel.

Beeksma spent 11 years directing the organization as its Board president, and he has also served as vice-president and in other capacities within the Board for more than 15 years. His outstanding leadership and organizational skills, and his hard work and love of this sport and the Ashland facility helped the ABC Raceway to receive the WISSOTA Track of the Year award in 2002 and the highly-coveted Racing Promotion Monthly North Region Auto Racing Promoter of the Year award in 2012.

Ray Berglund was a talented and knowledgeable handyman directly involved in the construction and maintenance of nearly every building and facility on the Raceway’s grounds over a 20-plus-year time frame. His interest in the track never waned right up until his passing in June 2015. His wife Dawn’s involvement began while working with the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce, and her staunch support created a most unique relationship between race track and community. Their sons Larry, John and Dave also have contributed greatly, both as racers and while generously helping with projects here.

The Hudacks have been involved with the Raceway since its very beginning, when he was a successful racer here and she worked in the concession stand. Don was on the Board of Directors from 1970 until ’78, and he would often offer his shop to hold Board meetings in. Alice has been and continues to be a long-time fixture in the concession stand. Ever since Don started racing back in the 1960s, there has been at least one member of the Hudack family involved at the track in one way or another.

Two of the most beloved and missed people ever to be involved with this organization, the Marincels contributed many years to the success of this track, right up until their passing. Rudy worked as part of the safety crew for years, and he also served as the Association’s treasurer in the mid-1960s. Lorraine worked as both a ticket taker and in the concession stands, and was affectionately known as “Cupcake.” Their children, Denise and Rudy, continue to followed in their parents’ footsteps – for many years Denise has worked in the ticket booths and concession stands, and Rudy still works on our infield safety crew as often as he can.

The lone Honorary inductee, unanimously chosen by HoF Selection Committee for its many contributions to the Raceway, is CG Bretting Mfg Co Inc of Ashland. The family-run business has been a mainstay in the local community, and for so many years they have generously offered to help with service, maintenance and improvement projects for the facility, often before ever even being asked, and nearly always without cost to the Association for their materials or labor. They also sponsor or support many of the area’s drivers, and several of their employees are either racers or otherwise directly involved in the Raceway organization. Tad Bretting accepted on behalf of the company and family.

The inductees were honored at a private luncheon at Zar’s Banquet Hall in Ashland prior to the race program, and their names will be displayed at the track in the grandstand area.

Eder Takes Two More in Mods, MMs; Savoy a First-Time Winner at ABC

August 17th, 2016

Ashland, WI– On a night when the ABC Raceway inducted its third Hall of Fame class and fans came through once again with a huge contribution for a worthy cause, Kevin Eder stole the show by winning both the WISSOTA Modified and WISSOTA Midwest Modified features at the northern Wisconsin speedplant on Saturday night.

The WISSOTA PolyDome Dirt Track Series five-division program was presented by Zar’s Banquet Hall of Ashland and included the enshrinement of nine new members into its Hall of Fame. In addition, over $1,700 was raised thanks to the generosity of race fans through “split-the-pot” ticket sales and a matching donation by Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland.

The Class of 2016 includes retired drivers Mel Ferguson, Jerry Hartman, Johnny Johnson and Ron Weinberger; and volunteers and contributors Kurt Beeksma, Ray & Dawn Berglund and family, Don & Alice Hudack, and Rudy and Lorraine Marincel. CG Bretting Mfg Co Inc of Ashland was also added as an Honorary inductee.

Eder, of Ashland, worked the outside line around the three-eighths-mile red-clay oval to near perfection on his way to his fourth “big Mod” A-main win of the year here and seventh overall this season at ABC. Prior to a stoppage just three laps into the 20-lap affair for a safety check on Dustin Hudack’s car, pole starter Steve Lavasseur had fought off early threats from Jeff Spacek for the lead. After the restart, Eder used a “split-the-difference” move between Brian Mikkonen and Steve Stuart to take away third place, and then he switched to the upstairs line, swooping around Spacek on lap 5 to claim second.

With Lavasseur also using the high road, Eder dove low to pass him for the lead on lap 7, and from there he drove away, pushing his lead to a second-and-a-half within four short laps. Stuart drew up to challenge Lavasseur for second, and the pair staged an entertaining battle for the position as Eder pulled away.

The duel also allowed Paul Wrazidlo to reel them in, and while driving under the white flag Wrazidlo slipped past Stuart for third. Lavasseur barely held off Wrazidlo for second, albeit a full 2.57 seconds behind Eder, with Stuart close behind in fourth. Bill Byholm was a distant fifth.

In the 20-lap Mid-Mod main, Eder started deeper in the field (inside on row 4), but that just meant it took him longer to get to the front. Several early squabbles kept the race from moving along, including a two-car scrum on the opening lap, Jeremy Lindquist’s grind against the front straight concrete on lap 6, a four-car mess on the ensuing restart, and another two-car get-together on lap 8. But Eder didn’t rely on the yellow flags to pick off positions; he worked the high groove to get by Wayne Stricker for fourth on lap 3 and repeated the move to gain third ahead of Tanner Byholm prior to the lap 6 stoppage.

Eder beat Dave Flynn for runner-up honors on that restart, and then a lap later he swept around outside front-row starter Shane Kisling for the lead. From there he simply outran the field as the remaining 12 laps after the last caution-flag slowdown clicked off non-stop.

Eder led by a second-and-a-half when he caught and began to pass backmarkers with five circuits remaining, but Flynn could not trim much of that lead down. Eder’s third win of the year in the division came 1.22 seconds before Flynn took the checkered, with Ryan Adamzak, Byholm and Kisling filling out the top five.

One week after another “top-gun” WISSOTA Pure Stocker – Rice Lake’s Jason Havel – came to town to turn some laps in preparation for the upcoming “Pure Excitement 25,” defending AmsOil Speedway champ and current points leader Ryan Savoy of Superior held off Matt Deragon for his first career feature win here.

The race for the win was tight throughout the 15-lap run, with Andrew Hanson working around pole starter Jeff Christman for the early advantage. Deragon, who started behind Hanson, followed the leader’s tire tracks into second, and Randy Graham and points leader Justin Weinberger also threatened to overtake Christman just before the yellow flag flew for Jake Nevala’s stalled ride on lap 3.

Graham did get by Christman for third just after the restart, and another caution stop – this time for Annika Hammitt’s lost tire and other debris on lap 6, put him with the lead pair for the next green flag. Unfortunately for Graham, Savoy started his charge with that restart, slipping below Graham for third on lap 8 just as Deragon made his move by Hanson for the lead.

Another stop for a lost tire – this time from the car of Andy Poll – allowed Savoy to continue his forward progress, taking advantage of Graham’s departure from the race due to a flat tire of his own. Savoy immediately worked outside to get by Hanson for second, and then he switched lanes and drove under Deragon for the lead with four to go. The defending track champ did not let the visitor get too far away, but Savoy held on by a car-length or so for his landmark win, while another first-nighter – rookie Dylan Shelton – raised eyebrows with his third-place effort. Hanson and Weinberger completed the top five.

The closest finish for a win on this night came in the WISSOTA Super Stock feature, where Flynn clipped points leader Nick Oreskovich by just 32 one-thousandths of a second at the checkers. Cory Casari grabbed the early lead by riding the high line, while polesitter Terran Spacek stayed alongside on the low groove. Flynn, from Superior, followed Casari as he battled with Pat Beeksma door-to-door for third, and Oreskovich was side-by-side with DJ Keeler behind them.

The leaders stayed in formation for most of the first eight laps, with Casari not enjoying much more than a half-second lead at any given time, until Jeff Klopstein’s slowed racer brought out the only caution flag of the 20-lap run. At the same time, Beeksma’s racer spun after incurring damage, ending his run and moving Oreskovich to fourth for the restart.

Flynn began to scramble with Spacek for second, with Oreskovich close behind, but Casari couldn’t take advantage to pull away. On lap 14 Flynn cleared the others and dropped low to challenge Casari, and with a classic “slide job” coming out of turn 4 on lap 16 Flynn took the lead.

With the white flag in the air Oreskovich slipped low to take over second, and then he ran the outside line to pull up alongside Flynn coming out of turn 4 coming to the finish line. The pair scraped fenders while racing for the win, with Flynn prevailing by a mere few feet. Casari, Spacek and Scott Lawrence were not that far back as they finished third through fifth.

The Six-Cylinder feature turned out to be a repeat performance from the previous two weeks, with Trego’s Bubba Anderson holding off points leader Tiffany Hudack for his third straight win. Caution flags played a significant role in this one as well, starting with a two-car incident just a circuit into the 15-lap affair.

Neil Adamzak drove hard to get by pole starter Cole Vernon after the restart, and Anderson tried to repeat the inside move to take second. But Joe Newago lost a tire to stop the run on lap 2, which put Anderson back to third, and DeJay Jarecki spun on the re-do. Anderson’s attempt to pass Vernon was more successful the next time, and on lap 4 he sped past Adamzak for the lead.

Anderson was nearly a full second up on lap 8, but Adamzak drew to the leader’s rear bumper by lap 12. That’s when the third-running Vernon flew off the pit exit and tagged the guard rail behind turn 1 with apparent mechanical problems, stopping the race and setting up a three-lap sprint to the finish. Hudack restarted fourth, a row behind Adamzak and Scott Ovaska, but with the green flag out Ovaska’s car failed him and he faded, allowing Hudack to take third. She drove by Adamzak while taking the white flag, but she could get no closer than a half-second back as Anderson grabbed his fourth feature win of the year. Forrest Schultz and Jarecki completed the top five.

The fast-lap bonuses in the features went to Stuart in the Mods (17.002 seconds), Casari in the Supers (17.472), Eder in the Mid-Mods(17.246), and Hudack in the Sixes (18.219).

The ABC Raceway will invite Pure Stockers from throughout the region for its 13th annual “Pure Excitement 25″ special on Saturday, August 20. The feature is set to pay at least $500 to win, and fans and businesses are asked to help increase the overall purse to the entry-level division’s feature by donating as much as they want to whatever finishing position they wish.

Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, and the first green flag should fly at 7. Adult tickets are $11, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream live online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information visit the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com, or call the track on racedays at (715) 682-4990.

Third Hall of Fame Class to be Inducted at ABC on Saturday

August 13th, 2016

Ashland, WI — On Saturday night the ABC Raceway will add to its illustrious list of Hall of Fame inductees, while also raising money for a very worthy cause.

The program, to be presented by Zar’s Banquet Hall of Ashland, will include the introduction of the track’s Class of 2016 to the fans in attendance during intermission between heat race and feature action. In addition, Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland will help the Raceway in its “Race to a Cure for Cancer,” the track’s annual fundraiser for the Ashland-Bayfield County Chapters of the American Cancer Society.

The nine new Hall of Fame inductees will be honored with a private luncheon on Saturday afternoon at Zar’s, and then the formal presentations will be made at the track. Those being honored in the Driver category include Mel Ferguson, Jerry Hartman, Johnny Johnson and Ron Weinberger. In the Volunteers & Contributors category the inductees include Kurt Beeksma, Ray & Dawn Berglund, Don & Alice Hudack, and Rudy and Lorraine Marincel.

In addition, CG Bretting Mfg Co of Ashland will be feted for its contributions to the success of the venerable northern Wisconsin race facility.

The regular season of racing is down to its final three scheduled nights, and drivers will be going all-out in order to earn their best possible finishing positions in the 2016 divisional championship standings.

In the WISSOTA Modified division, Neil Balduc of Bessemer, MI, is in position to win his first-ever track title, but two multi-time Mod champs – Ashland’s Steve Stuart and 2015 champ Al Uotinen of Superior – are well within reach of the leader.

The WISSOTA Super Stock points chase is also a matter of a potential first-time champ being chased by a many-time trophy winner. Mason’s Nick Oreskovich will spend the next three race nights trying to maintain his lead over Scott Lawrence of Superior, who has won the Super Stock title eleven times in Ashland.

Paul Suzik of Ironwood, MI, is trying to defend his 2015 track title in the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds, but a fierce field of challengers, led by Ashland pilots Tanner Hicks and Ryan Adamzak, is right on his tail in the standings.

Ashland’s Tiffany Hudack seems to have things well in hand atop the ABC Six-Cylinder points, although she can’t afford to let up with Scott Ovaska of Marengo and Ashland’s Forrest Schultz still trying to track her down.

Another possible first-time champ, Justin Weinberger of Park Falls, the grandson of new Hall of Famer Ron, still needs to keep the likes of Brandle Pupp of Ashland and Iron River’s Andrew Hanson behind him for three more Saturday nights.

The Raceway’s live pre-race radio program, “Z-93 Race Night,” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information. Adult tickets are just $11 each, and kids ages 12 and under are admitted free with a paid adult admission.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on anytime to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Kisling, Anderson, Deragon Double Up at ABC’s ‘Summer Blast’

August 8th, 2016

Ashland, WI– Another strong field of 96 cars – including some first-night visitors – filled the ABC Raceway’s pit area on Saturday night, and three of the five feature winners were repeat visitors to the track’s Victory Lane.

The track hosted its first-ever “Summer Blast,” a combination block party and family picnic which included food and drink specials, games for the kids, and giveaways to fans all night long, as well as deejay-provided music after the races. The WISSOTA PolyDome Dirt Track Series five-division program, presented by Northern Wisconsin Fence of Phillips and Outlaw Wraps & Apparel of Ashland, was kicked off by a half-hour on-track “meet the drivers” autograph session sponsored by Little Caesar’s Pizza of Ashland.

The repeat winners included Shane Kisling of Park Falls in the WISSOTA Super Stocks, Ashland’s Matt Deragon in the WISSOTA Pure Stocks, and Bubba Anderson of Trego in the ABC Six-Cylinders. Steve Stuart of Ashland grabbed his third feature win of the summer but first since June at ABC in the WISSOTA Modifieds, and Wayne Stricker of Highbridge topped the WISSOTA Midwest Modifeds for his first win in Ashland since June 2014.

Kisling’s climb to the front in his A-main took a while to develop, as the Super Stocks suffered from an early case of “yellow fever.” Caution flags for incidents and accidents came after each of the first five laps of the 20-lap event were scored. Pole-starter Jim Campbell held the lead through each of the restarts, while pressure from the likes of Randy Spacek, Kisling and Cory Casari was constant. However, after the fifth
caution slowdown – for a Randy Mashlan spin – the last 15 laps clicked off non-stop.

Kisling and Casari raced side-by-side throughout the early stages, and then for a couple more laps after that last restart, until Kisling finally cleared the stubborn Casari. It didn’t take Kisling long to reel in Campbell, however, and on lap 7 he slipped by and set sail, leading by half a second at mid-race and stretching that to nearly three seconds in the closing stages while setting the fast lap of the race at 17.541 seconds.

Pat Beeksma worked his way past Casari for third just prior to the halfway point of the race, and a circuit or so later he overtook Campbell for second, where he finished a full 2.98 seconds back of Kisling. Divisional points leader Nick Oreskovich overcame an early spin and clawed his way back to third with a late-race pass of Campbell, while Scott Lawrence worked his way to a fifth-place run.

Deragon, who has battled gremlins with one car after another this summer, ran like the defending champ that he is in claiming the Pure Stock main event win, and in doing so became the track’s all-time leader for feature wins in the division with number 16 of his career.

After a first-try caution stoppage, Randy Graham slipped under both front-row starters Don Livingston and Jeff Christman for the early lead, while visiting Jason Havel showed his strength with an inside move of his own from the fourth row to take second. Havel gave Graham fits for the first six laps, while Deragon and Andrew Hanson settled into fourth and fifth behind Livingston.

Deragon got by Livingston into third just before Havel bumped into one of the infield marker tires and momentarily lost control. The miscue nearly cost Havel his runner-up spot, but a caution-flag stop gave him second place back for the restart. Once back under green, Deragon and Havel ganged up on Graham, with Deragon taking the lead for good on lap 7.

On lap 11 Livingston ran into Brock Beilke as the frontrunners were putting Beilke a lap in arrears, and on the restart Havel and Graham made contact, cutting the left-rear tire on the visitor’s car and sending him to the pits for a replacement. Jeff Christman’s spin set up a green-white-checkered finish, and after the field crossed under the white flag Havel and Brandle Pupp tangled mid-pack, sending Havel’s car into a marker tire. The race was deemed complete, with Graham, points leader Justin Weinberger, Hanson and Chad Carlson completing the top five behind Deragon.

For Anderson it was deja vu, as again he found himself needing to outrun Sixes points leader Tiffany Hudack to the finish. On this night there was more breathing room, however, as he was a full second-and-a-half in front at the checkers.

After a first-lap tangle forced a complete restart, rookie Dalton Truchon bolted by polestarter Brendon Ottman to the initial lead, while another rookie, Joshua Saunders, made an impressive outside move to take second. Anderson used the inside lane to swipe third, and after four laps he made the winning pass of the race with an inside three-wide move through turn 2, while Saunders took second on the high side.

Forrest Schultz had just taken over third place on lap 7 when DeJay Jarecki’s car inexplicably stalled to bring out the first of the two caution slowdowns of the 15-lapper. One circuit after restart Schultz worked inside against Saunders for second, with Hudack diving low for third, just before Joe Newago looped his ride. From there the chase was on, as Hudack swept around Schultz for second and got a run on Anderson, but the leader’s car was too strong and got stronger as the race stayed green. Anderson set a fast-lap time of 18.615 seconds as he cruised to his third win of the season, while Hudack, who has the other five Sixes feature wins this year, finished second for the third time in 2016. Schultz, Saunders and Scott Ovaska completed the top five.

Stuart has been getting used to his new Mod with the much more affordable “Concept” motor, and he finally planted it in the winner’s circle with his third feature win of the season. Stuart started the 20-lap headliner alongside pole starter Brian Mikkonen, and the pair put on a door-to-door show for a couple of laps before Stuart gained an advantage that he would not relinquish.

The first of just two yellow flags was thrown on lap 3, when Paul Niznik ended up in the infield just off of turn 2, and from there Stuart set the pace for another dozen laps, although not without challenge. Paul Wrazidlo dove to the bottom groove to take third place from Bill Byholm shortly after that restart, and after a few laps of side-by-side racing with Mikkonen, Wrazidlo snared second. On lap 9 Wrazidlo drew alongside Stuart in a bid for the lead, but that became a wake-up call for the six-time track champ, who not only survived the threat but pulled away, building up a 1.24-second lead as Byholm regrouped and passed Wrazidlo for second.

Dustin Hudack’s stalled ride brought out the caution flag for the second and final time in the event with five tours remaining, but Stuart would not be denied his 29th career feature win in Ashland and 15th in the “big Mods.” Byholm trailed by a second-and-a-third at the checkers, with Wrazidlo on his tail, while Kevin Eder and points leader Neil Balduc filled out the top five.

Of the night’s feature winners, Stricker had been away from Victory Lane the longest, but it was as impressive a run as he’s had in some time. The effort by Tanner Byholm to lead the first three laps and keep Stricker and pole starter Marcus Dunbar at bay was just as impressive, but after the ride of visiting Shane Halopka stopped on the track, Byholm spun his racer in front of the field on the lap 3 restart. It was amazing that no one hit him, but he restarted at the tail of the grid.

Stricker inherited the lead and knew what to do with it, racing away to a lead of 1.88 seconds before the next yellow flag was thrown on lap 10. During that green-flag run, double-duty racer Eder moved past Dunbar for second and brought Tanner Hicks along to third. Hicks in turn used a strong outside run to get around Eder, with Ryan Adamzak in hot pursuit, before a Jordan Barningham spin at mid-race slowed the pace.

Eder returned the favor on Hicks on the restart and gave Stricker his only real test for the lead, but Stricker held on and restarted at the front after the last caution flag of the night was thrown for Tyler Hudack’s spin on lap 12. Again Hicks overtook Eder for second once the green flag came back out, and Eder slipped out of the top five as Cole Spacek and Kisling proceeded forward in the running order. Eventually Hicks gave up second to Adamzak during a great three-car dogfight for the spot along with Spacek, but that just allowed Stricker to run off to a 1.39-second margin of victory.

Spacek and Kisling finished fourth and fifth, and Stricker became the fourth winner of the night to set the fastest lap in his respective feature win a time of 17.946 seconds.

Over 20 bikes donated by racers, sponsors and fans were given away to the younger fans at the track on this night, and many other prizes went to the adult fans. The generous contributors included Andy Poll, Cole Spacek and Steve Altman Motorsports, Dave Anderson Trucking, Don Muzzy, Jeff Klopstein, Jeff Spacek, Jokinen Racing, Moore’s Army-Navy Store, Oreskovich Racing, Outlaw Wraps & Apparel, Pat Cook Racing, Peapatch Racing, Shawn McFadden, and Tiffany and Tyler Hudack.

On Saturday, August 13, the ABC Raceway will host a very special night with its third annual Hall of Fame induction ceremonies, to be presented by Zar’s Banquet Hall of Ashland, as well as its “Race to a Cure for Cancer” fundraiser night, to be presented by Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland. A private banquet for the inductees and current HoF members will be held at Zar’s on Saturday afternoon, and the formal introduction of the Class of 2016 will be held during intermission of the race program.

The Raceway will also rely on the never-ending generosity of its fans, drivers and sponsors in its efforts to raise funds for the American Cancer Society, with Northern Clearing offering to match the first $1,000 in donated funds.

Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, and green-flag racing starts at 7. Adult tickets are $11, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream live online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information visit the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com, or call the track on racedays at (715) 682-4990.

‘Summer Blast’ Planned for Saturday Night at ABC

August 6th, 2016

Ashland, WI — There is nothing better than a summertime party in northern Wisconsin, and on Saturday night that will be the theme at the ABC Raceway.

The award-winning three-eighths-mile red-clay oval will play host to its first-ever “Summer Blast,” a combination of family picnic, summer block party and fun-filled race night to be presented by Northern Wisconsin Fence of Phillips and Outlaw Graphics & Apparel of Ashland.

Races and fans are invited to be at the track early for a “happy hour” from 5:30-6:30 pm for generous food and beverage specials. Hot laps for the WISSOTA Modifieds, Super Stocks, Midwest Modifieds and Pure Stocks, and the ABC Six-Cylinders, will start at 6:15. Then, at 6:30, the drivers will park their race cars out on the track so that fans young and old alike will get a chance to visit with the drivers, collect autographs and pictures, and see the cars up close in a rescheduling of the “Meet the Drivers” session originally slated for June 4.

And even though the racing action will start shortly after 7 pm, the fun will continue both on and off the track throughout the evening. On the red-clay oval, all five divisions will compete in a full slate of qualifying heat races and feature events, while in the grandstands there will continue to be prize giveaways and specials. There will even be bike giveaways for the younger fans.

Even after the program is complete, the fun doesn’t stop, as there will be a “happy half-hour” from 10:30-11 pm, while a deejay will provide music for dancing and fun well after the racing is done.

With only four nights of racing scheduled for the remainder of the regular season, the on-track action should be at its best as drivers vie for their best possible finishing positions in the all-important divisional standings.

The Raceway’s live pre-race radio program, “Z-93 Race Night,” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information. Adult tickets are just $11 each, and kids ages 12 and under are admitted free with a paid adult admission.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on anytime to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Reservations Now Available for 41st Red Clay Classic

August 2nd, 2016

Ashland, WI– Reservations are now being accepted for seating, on-site camping and pit spots for the 41st annual Red Clay Classic, to be held at the ABC Raceway on Friday and Saturday, September 30-October 1.

The traditional season finale for stock car racing in the Northland will feature WISSOTA-sanctioned Late Models, Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds competing for a purse slated to be in excess of $86,000. Upwards of 200 or more racers are expected to be in attendance, making the event one of the biggest in all of WISSOTA.

The Red Clay Classic schedule includes all heat races on that Friday and semi-feature and feature races on Saturday. Other tentative activities include a dance at the track on Friday night, a scramble golf tournament on Saturday morning, and special sales throughout the Historic Downtown Ashland business district, plus additional activities throughout the community.

Fans and racers who had reserved seats, sites and spots for last year’s Classic have until August 10 to contact the Raceway to renew their reservations for this year’s show at last year’s prices. After August 10 any remaining unclaimed sites, seats and pit spots will be made available to the general public by reservation, with pricing announced at that time.

Adult grandstand tickets are available to those who reserved in 2015 at $20 for Friday’s program and $25 for Saturday; fans can purchase a two-day pass for just $40. For kids ages 6-12 tickets are $12 each night, while a two-day kids’ pass is just $20. A reserved seat can be purchased with a two-day pass for an additional $10 charge; reserved seats are not available with single-day ticket purchases.

A limited number of reserved primitive camping sites on the Raceway grounds is available for $30 for the weekend. There is also camping available on the privately-owned property to the east of the track, but those sites are available on a first-come, first-served basis, and no reservations are available through the Raceway for those sites.

To buy tickets or to save a seat or campsite, fans can call (715) 682-2672 Monday through Friday (evenings only), send an e-mail to tickets@abcraceway.com, or inquire at the grandstand ticket window during any of the remaining regular-season Saturday race nights at the track through August 27.

Reserved pit spots are just $30 each and available by calling (715) 746-2390 (evenings) or by e-mailing to tickets@abcraceway.com.

Pricing for tickets and other reservations available after August 10 will be released at that time.

Information regarding access times to the grounds, pits and grandstands, start times for hot laps and racing, and other activities will be released at a later time. Prior to each night’s race program, “Z-93 Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live from the Raceway on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com. The broadcast times will be announced at a later date.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. Additional event information is available on the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com. Additional information on the community is available by visiting www.visitashland.com.

Eder Hangs On for ABC ‘Mod Mayhem’ Win

August 2nd, 2016

Ashland, WI– On a night that, at times, lived up to its billing, Ashland’s Kevin Eder held off a determined Ashley Anderson to win the fifth annual “Modified Mayhem” feature at the end of a full Saturday night of racing action at the ABC Raceway.

The WISSOTA PolyDome Dirt Track Series five-division program also included two other nail-biter features, a main event that never made it to its finish, and an overdue return to Victory Lane. A strong turnout of 96
entries were on hand for the 19-race program.

The visiting Anderson started on the pole of the 20-lap, $1,000-to-win WISSOTA Modified A-feature and battled side-by-side with Destin Lorimor briefly before establishing the early pace. Eder, who started outside on row 2, slipped to third ahead of fast-qualifier Neil Balduc just prior to the first slowdown of the race, for a stalled Scott Hudack.

On the restart Eder drove around Lorimor to take second, and Steve Stuart followed the same line past Balduc for fourth. Eder then went on the attack, reeling Anderson in over the next three laps before sweeping around him on lap 6 and then drawing away. Stuart continued his charge to the front by getting by Lorimor for third and challenging Anderson, as Eder drove to a nearly-full-second lead over the next couple of laps.

Another visitor, Scott Miller, looped his ride at the mid-race mark to slow the pace and bring the field back to Eder’s rear bumper, and then a lap after going back under green Stuart’s car mysteriously slowed, dropping him to the back. Right after that restart Balduc and Al Uotinen snuck past Anderson to take second and third, but Anderson clawed his way back by them over the next five laps.

Eder had re-established his one-second lead with four laps remaining, but Anderson chiseled that lead to less than half that distance by the time the checkers flew and set the fast lap of the race in the process at 17.542 seconds. Balduc held firm to third ahead of Uotinen, while 14th-starting Paul Wrazidlo took fifth away from Lorimor in the closing moments.

The winner’s share was bumped just prior to race time thanks to a $200 donation by George Dalbeck of Dalbeck Logging.

One would have thought that the $1,000 check was going to the winner of the WISSOTA Super Stock feature by the way that race unfolded. As many as nine different drivers had a legitimate shot at the win at one time or another during the 20-lap affair, and it boiled down to a tight green-white-checkered finish after two of the contenders got together while coming for the white flag.

It started with a great side-by-side battle for the lead between two very popular drivers – Charlie Anderson and Don Muzzy – who had started on the front row. Neither gave an inch until a lap 4 stoppage for a stalled Jim Campbell, by which point Muzzy had edged ahead. On that restart Shawn McFadden Jr slipped low to pass both Dave Flynn and Anderson for second, and a lap later McFadden again worked the low groove to nose past Muzzy for the lead.

After Dave Elliot’s spin on lap 5, Muzzy went back to work on McFadden, running the little-used middle line around the smooth, slick red-clay oval while McFadden hugged the low groove. By lap 8 Muzzy had inched ahead again, while behind them positions were being debated furiously. Cory Casari, who had started tenth, had worked his way to third before the mid-point of the run, and he had caught the lead pair by lap 13, but at that point he and McFadden made hard contact coming off of turn 2, causing McFadden to stall and sending Casari to the tail of the grid.

Scott Lawrence, who had been running in the top seven throughout the race, now restarted third alongside McFadden, but he slipped up the hill in turn 1. He recovered and charged down the back stretch with a four-wide pass for second by turn 3, but the move was negated by a grinding crash involving Colten Vernon and Andy Grymala. Lawrence restarted third again but was overtaken by Nick Oreskovich, while ahead of them McFadden
drove low to again challenge Muzzy.

On lap 17 Oreskovich tried a thread-the-needle pass of both leaders but couldn’t make it stick. Then, the next time around, Lawrence tried to go low to pull alongside Oreskovich but instead made contact, causing Oreskovich to spin. With Lawrence sent to the tail, the field raced to a green-white-checkered finish, with Muzzy fending off McFadden at the front of a tight pack of cars for a quarter-second margin of victory – his first win ever in a WISSOTA-sanctioned feature. Oreskovich came home third just behind the leaders, with Jeff Klopstein Jr and Anderson completing the top five.

In Victory Lane after the race, all four other drivers finishing in the top five came over to congratulate Muzzy in an emotional show of support for the popular driver from Ironwood, MI. Casari gained the fast-lap bonus with a time of 18.111 seconds.

A rash of yellow flags caused the WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature to exceed its 30-minute time limit before its 20-lap distance was reached, but Cole Spacek of Phillips was out front when the race was deemed complete.

Dave Flynn tried to outrun Ryan Adamzak and Tyler Vernon for the early advantage, but Shane Kisling’s stalled ride nixed that move. Vernon held the lead after a two-car get-together following lap 1, and just after Adamzak slipped past Flynn for second on the restart, Flynn’s car dropped its driveshaft and slowed. He safely turned into the infield without causing a pile-up, but the debris brought about the caution again.

Eder started a charge toward the front from his third-row start, but a lap 4 stop for debris delayed his advance. Instead he grabbed some traction off the bottom of turn 2 on that restart and passed four cars to take the lead, with his teammate Vernon in tow. After Tanner Byholm’s spin on lap 5, and a tangle involving John Kallas and Brady Mesko-Jokinen on the next try, third-running Adamzak’s car refused to refire and he fell from contention.

Eder and Vernon then raced door-to-door for the lead, as did Tanner Hicks and Paul Suzik for third. Spacek, who had started ninth, was running fifth on lap 10, but he made the low groove work to his advantage and took away third by lap 12. Then Eder’s car gave up on him while leading, putting Spacek into a battle for the lead with Vernon. That dogfight continued until the lead pair were coming to take the white flag, when Vernon pushed too hard and spun himself in turn 3.

The field tried for a green-white-checkered finish, but a three-car pile-up behind the leaders brought out the caution flag and the race had reached its time limit, with Spacek being awarded his second feature win of the year at ABC ahead of Hicks and Suzik. Tad Bretting, who had started 23rd on the 24-car grid, charged to a fourth-place finish, ahead of Mesko-Jokinen. Early in the run Eder had set a fast-lap time of 17.898 seconds.

After a last-place finish in the ABC Six-Cylinder feature the previous week, and a tough outing during the division’s guest appearance at Proctor (MN) Speedway the night before, Bubba Anderson of Trego turned his luck around by holding off divisional points leader Tiffany Hudack in that class’s 15-lap A-main win. Anderson outran Dalton Truchon to the lead through the first pair of turns and led every lap for his second win of the year.

Tyler Vernon followed Anderson into second, and after a couple more laps Jeremy Lindquist took third away from the rookie Truchon. Hudack, who had won five of the division’s six features to date and the last four in a row, drove low to snare third on lap 4, and two laps later Lindquist’s ride failed him, stopping the race.

Vernon tried to drive around Anderson on the restart, but instead lost second to Hudack. Then Cole Vernon spun down the back chute to bring out the final yellow flag of the race, and while under the delay Tyler Vernon’s car stalled and his third-place run was gone.

Anderson kept his car as low and wide as possible to keep Hudack behind him and scored the win with the 2014 champ just a third of a second back. Scott Ovaska, DeJay Jarecki and Truchon completed the top five, and Hudack added the fast-lap bonus to her night after an 18.595-second circuit.

In the only feature to run non-stop, Ashland’s Matt Deragon completed his first truly successful night of the season, and it was a dandy. After struggling with an attempt to move up into the Mid-Mods, and then dealing with gremlins in a new WISSOTA Pure Stock, the defending Pure Stock track champ scored a clean sweep of heat and feature race action in the entry-level division.

After clearing pole-starter Don Livingston for the initial lead, Deragon looked like his old self again, driving away to as much as a half-straightaway lead with no yellow flags to draw the field back to him. He was lapping backmarkers with four laps to go, and no one came close to challenging him as he scored his 15th career feature win in the division, tying Casari for that all-time record at ABC.

Andrew Hanson had all he could do to hold off threats from Justin Weinberger and Andy Poll throughout the first half of the run, but eventually Weinberger got the better of him with six laps left. Poll tied his season-best effort with a fourth-place performance, while Randy Conner earned fifth-place money.

The final month of the regular season kicks off on Saturday, August 6, as the ABC Raceway will host a “Summer Blast,” to be presented by Northern Wisconsin Fence of Phillips and Outlaw Graphics & Apparel of Ashland. A “happy hour” concession stand special will run from 5:30 until 6:30, and race fans will get to meet their favorite drivers on the track during the Little Caesar’s Pizza “meet-and-greet” autograph session starting at 6:30. Plenty of fun and games can also be expected throughout the night.

Hot laps will follow the meet-the-drivers session, and green-flag racing should begin shortly after 7. Adult tickets are $11, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream live online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information visit the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com, or call the track on racedays at (715) 682-4990.

ABC Raceway to Offer Big Money for Big Mods on Saturday

July 29th, 2016

Ashland, WI — The ABC Raceway will offer a healthy purse to its premier weekly division this Saturday night.

The three-eighths-mile red-clay oval will be the sight of the fifth annual “Modified Mayhem” special event, to be presented by the Bad River Lodge, Casino & Convention Center of Odanah. WISSOTA Modifieds from throughout the region will be on hand to compete for an $800 feature winner’s check.

The track’s WISSOTA Super Stocks, Midwest Modifieds and Pure Stocks, and its ABC Six-Cylinders, will also be on hand for a full PolyDome Dirt Track Series program of heat-race and feature action. Only five regular-season race nights remain, and championship battles in all classes are still being very hotly contested.

Although there have only been four previous offerings of this particular event, regular-season specials for the “big Mods” have been held in various iterations at this award-winning Northern Wisconsin race facility since at least 1988, when the first “Chuck Anderson Race of Champions” event was held. In 2002, the Mods were offered a unique “triple-header” program, with three A-features in one night; this proved very popular with both fans and drivers.

In 2006 Como Oil & Propane began promotion of a highly-touted multi-track series in the Northland featuring the Modifieds, offering the division two big-time, big-money events at Ashland. However, the Como Mod Series was an even bigger hit and the “triple-header” idea faded away after 2007.

When the Como Series folded after the 2011 campaign, the Raceway staff decided to continue offering a big-money mid-season show for the division, and the first of the “Mayhem” events took place in 2012, with Curt Myers of Cameron claiming the honors. ABC regulars Steve Stuart of Ashland (2013), Jeff Spacek of Phillips (’14), and Kevin Eder of Ashland (’15) have held visitor drivers at bay to cash the winning paychecks from each of the past three events.

The Raceway’s live pre-race radio program, “Z-93 Race Night,” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information. Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, followed by the first green flag of the night at 7. Adult tickets are just $11 each, and kids ages 12 and under are admitted free with a paid adult admission.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on anytime to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Hudack Claims Sixes’ ‘Sizzler’ Win at ABC

July 25th, 2016

Ashland, WI,– Tiffany Hudack of Ashland took advantage of a mid-race restart to pass Scott Ovaska and win the tenth annual Six-Cylinder “Summer Sizzler,” presented by Lake Shore Cafe of Ashland, on Saturday night at the ABC Raceway.

The rest of the program, presented by the Safari Tavern of Ashland, saw the feature winners in the WISSOTA PolyDome Dirt Track Series divisions receive invitations to qualify for the prestigious Afco Shocks Race of Champions event during the WISSOTA 100 weekend at the Dakota State Fair Speedway in Huron, SD, in mid-September. In addition, the Northern Vintage Stockcar Racers (NVSR) group made their annual visit to the track, with two drivers winning at ABC for the first time in their careers.

Hudack, the 2014 Sixes champion who is leading the points standings again this year, started the 15-lap, $650-to-win spotlight event on the inside of row 3 but made minimal headway over the first couple of laps, as Forrest Schultz charged to a big early lead ahead of Dalton Truchon and rookie polestarter Joshua Saunders. On lap 2 Hudack and Ovaska surrounded Saunders and overtook him for third and fourth, just before Brendon Ottman’s spin brought about the first of three yellow-flag slowdowns.

On that restart Schultz was unable to completely run away from the field, as Ovaska worked his way around Truchon into the runner-up spot. Hudack followed the same line around Truchon for third a lap later, and the top three staged a great battle for the lead. On lap 8 Hudack moved to the outside lane, and a lap later the leaders were running three-wide through turn 3 when Schultz, in the middle of the pack, slowed with mechanical issues. Ovaska clipped the left-front of the leader’s car, but both he and Hudack got by as Schultz dropped into the infield. At about the same time Saunders’ car stopped on the back straight with a stream of fluid behind it, giving Ovaska the point for the restart.

At the green flag Hudack swept around Ovaska and edged ahead down the back straight, but a tangle between Ottman and Joe Newago Jr further back in field negated the pass. The next time, though, Hudack not only completed the pass but steamed away to what eventually ended up as a 3.69-second margin of victory over Ovaska, her fifth feature win of the season in six starts, and the eighth win of her career. She also claimed the fast-lap bonus with a time of 18.077 seconds.

Truchon completed a great night by crossing the line in third, but he failed to follow post-race procedure in the teching area and lost the position to Jeremy Lindquist, while DeJay Jarecki and Newago were awarded fourth and fifth.

Hudack was the only repeat winner on this night at ABC, as all other feature winners collected their first checkered flags of the season here.

In the WISSOTA Modified 20-lapper, Scott Hudack worked off the outside of the front row and around Bill Byholm for the early lead. First-night visitor Danny Vang, who won his heat earlier in his first-ever visit here in a “big Mod,” advanced quickly from his third-row starting spot and slipped past Brian Mikkonen into fourth behind Steve Stuart just four laps in.

Hudack’s lead was just six-tenths of a second when Vang nabbed third from Stuart on lap 7. But Byholm closed the short deficit on Hudack by mid-race, and he worked the inside groove on the sticky-fast red-clay oval to take the lead away on lap 13. The veteran driver from Glidden then extended his advantage to over a second-and-a-half until, with four laps left, Paul Niznik spun into the infield from the front straightaway with a broken car.

In the sprint to the finish Byholm stretched his cushion again, winning by nearly 1.4 seconds and posting the race’s fast time with a 16.569-second lap. Vang grabbed second away from Hudack on the late restart for an impressive first showing here, while Neil Balduc followed him into third. Stuart came away with fifth-place money.

Shane Kisling of Park Falls, whose last feature win here was at last fall’s Red Clay Classic, led every lap of a 20-lap WISSOTA Super Stock main event that was also stalled by only one caution. Kisling outran pole starter Cory Casari through the first pair of turns and stayed out front, although not without determined challenges by Casari, and also later by Scott Lawrence, throughout the run.

As the top three raced nose-to-tail, Shawn McFadden Jr and points leader Nick Oreskovich raced door-to-door for several laps while debating fifth behind Pat Beeksma. Oreskovich gained the positional edge just before Aaron Mashlan’s spin brought about the only stoppage of the race, but McFadden got him back on the restart and grabbed fourth from Beeksma to boot.

Up front Kisling held on despite a couple of threats by Casari to use the inside line to challenge for the lead. Lawrence also tried the low groove for a pass for position, but Kisling prevailed for the tenth time in his career at Ashland. Casari and Lawrence – who posted a 17.001-second circuit to take fast-lap honors – were followed in the top five by McFadden and Beeksma.

Despite leading the points in their respective divisions, the winners of the WISSOTA Midwest Modified and Pure Stock features were first-time successful on the season. In the case of Paul Suzik of Ironwood, MI, his win was his first here in two years.

The Mid-Mods clicked off their 20-lap A-main with only two slowdowns, and one came on the start, when rookie Gunner Peterson slipped up and collected Tad Bretting and Ross Fuhrman. Suzik, who started on the pole, then outran Brady Mesko-Jokinen out of the first turn for the lead, and he would not look back. In fact, after the other stoppage – for John Kallas’ stalled ride on lap 3 – the defending track champ cruised away to a seemingly effortless win.

Behind Suzik, however, was some very entertaining racing. It took Ryan Adamzak a couple of laps to clear a very strong Mesko-Jokinen for second, and the second-generation sophomore then gave Kevin Eder fits before giving up third on lap 9. Eder eventually caught Adamzak and, with two laps remaining, passed him for runner-up honors. But Suzik had a comfortable 3.3-second cushion by then for his third career ABC Raceway win, and picked up the fast-lap bonus with a time of 17.137 seconds in the process.

Along with Eder and Adamzak, an impressive Mesko-Jokinen and equally impressive Jeremy Lindquist took fourth and fifth.

The Pure Stocks also kept the yellow flags to a minimum, but the excitement stayed at a high level, as Justin Weinberger of Park Falls came away with the win in a green-white-checkered finish. The initial battle for the lead of the 15-lapper was between front-row-starting Brandle Pupp, polestarter Jeff Christman and Randy Graham, while behind them Weinberger was in the midst of a four-car scrum for position.

Graham tried to go outside on Pupp for the lead on lap 6, but he slipped up in turn 4 and gave Andrew Hanson an opening to drive through for second. On the next tour around Hanson made a strong move to take the lead from Pupp, leaving a four-car dog-fight for second in his wake.

Graham charged back by Weinberger for third on lap 12, and with two laps remaining Matt Deragon followed Graham into fourth. But just as the lead pack took the white flag Pupp’s car got loose after contact from behind, forcing the tight pack of cars to scramble, and damage to Deragon’s radiator shot coolant all over the track. The resulting mess left a two-lap shootout for the finish, with Pupp and Weinberger restarting on Hanson’s back bumper.

Weinberger gained the advantage on Pupp and then pulled alongside the leader coming under the white flag. In the bumping and banging that ensued between the leaders for the win, Hanson’s car broke loose and nearly spun, and Weinberger grabbed the victory. Pupp, Christman and Andy Poll took advantage to claim second through fourth, and Graham crossed the line in fifth, but his car did not meet a post-race inspection and he forfeited the position to Randy Connor.

In the NVSR Full-Bodied Division feature, a battle among the “Big Three” manufacturers saw Paul Dolphy of Mounds View, MN, shoot away from the pole in his late-’60s Ford Torino and then hold off Greg Manor’s Chevy Chevelle and Bobby LePage’s Dodge Challenger for his first-ever win in Ashland. In the vintage club’s Super Modified main event, Dave Whirley of Grand Rapids, MN, got by Ken Sabby’s winged racer at mid-race and drove to his first-ever feature win as part of an NVSR event, with Mike Bjorklund coming home in third.

On Saturday, July 30, the ABC Raceway will award an $800 check to the winner of the “big Mod” feature as part of its fifth annual “Modified Mayhem” special, to be presented by the Bad River Lodge, Casino & Convention Center of Odanah. A strong field is expected, while the other four regular weekly-appearing divisions will also be in action on the final night before the final month of the track’s 2016 regular season begins.

Hot laps will be at 6:15 pm, and the first green-flag racing of the night will follow at 7. Adult tickets are $11, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream live online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information visit the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com, or call the track on racedays at (715) 682-4990.

Sixes ‘Sizzler,’ Vintage Cars on ABC’s Saturday Program

July 23rd, 2016

Ashland, WI — The ABC Raceway has another full night of racing fun set for this Saturday night.

The WISSOTA PolyDome Dirt Track Series program will include the rescheduled Six-Cylinder “Summer Sizzler,” to be presented by Lake Shore Cafe of Ashland, as well as the qualifying features for the Afco Shocks “Race of Champions” for the track’s four WISSOTA-sanctioned divisions, to be presented by the Safari Tavern of Ashland.

In addition to all of that, members of the Northern Vintage Stockcar Racers (NVSR) club will be in town on their annual visit to show off and compete with their classic racing equipment.

The tenth annual “Sizzler” was slated for June 25, but a severe thunderstorm wiped out that show before it could get started. Defending Sixes track champion Dale Coddington of Hayward will look to become only the third two-time winner of the event. But Ashland’s Tiffany Hudack, who currently leads the division’s points standings and has won three straight features and four of the five run so far this season, hopes to get her hands on the $650 first-place check.

The winners of the other four features – for the WISSOTA Modifieds, Super Stocks, Midwest Mods and Pure Stocks – will receive invitations to represent the Raceway in this year’s Afco Race of Champions, as part of the big WISSOTA 100 race weekend on September 14-17 at the Dakota State Fair Speedway in Huron, SD.

The NVSR is based in east-central Minnesota and has made annual trips to the northern Wisconsin red-clay oval for many years. The club brings a variety of restored racers from the bygone eras of the sport, and the car owners enjoy showing off the machines – which many will do in the parking lot at the track prior to Saturday’s races – as they do competing with them on tracks throughout the Midwest.

The Raceway’s live pre-race radio program, “Z-93 Race Night,” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information. Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, followed by the first green flag of the night at 7. Adult tickets are just $11 each, and kids ages 12 and under are admitted free with a paid adult admission.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on anytime to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Oreskovich Hangs On for ABC Super Stock Challenge Series Win

July 19th, 2016

Ashland, WI, — Nick Oreskovich had things well in hand over the first ten laps of Saturday night’s WISSOTA Super Stock feature at the ABC Raceway, thanks to strong restarts after caution-flag slowdowns. But as the final 15 laps ran off non-stop, the “Flyin’ Farmer” from Mason had all he could do to hold on for the win.

Oreskovich claimed the second race of the three-race, three-track FastLane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Challenge Series one night after holding off Scott Lawrence for the first-round win at Superior. A win at Proctor (MN) Speedway on Sunday would give Oreskovich the Series sweep and a possible $3,550 payoff for the weekend.

“That would be awesome to do,” Oreskovich said about the possibility of a sweep after his Ashland win. “The pressure’s on.”

Oreskovich, who started from the outside on the front row, took the immediate lead of the 25-lap headline event and stayed there after a lap 1 Aaron Mashlan spin. By lap 4 Oreskovich had built up a 1.45-second lead over a great battle between Keith Kern and Pat Beeksma for second, while a short distance back Lawrence was in a tussle with Shane Kisling and Kevin Burdick for fourth.

Beeksma gained an advantage on Kern with an inside pass on lap 6, but moments later Dave Elliott looped his ride to bring out another yellow flag and wipe out Oreskovich’s lead, which had grown to over three seconds. Then, on the restart, Dave Flynn got turned around, and several cars were collected to cause another delay.

As Jeff Klopstein overtook Lawrence for fifth three laps after that restart, Oreskovich again had pulled away from Beeksma and Kern by over two seconds, but Cory Marincel spun to bring about the final stoppage of the night. From that point on Oreskovich couldn’t get away as comfortably as before, as Burdick made a charge up to third within three laps.

Beeksma was behind Oreskovich by 1.2 seconds at the halfway point, but Beeksma slowly chipped away at the difference, hugging the inside line of the three-eighth-mile red-clay oval while Oreskovich rode the rim. With three laps remaining Beeksma was within a half-second of Oreskovich, and as the lead pair took the white flag Beeksma slipped a fender to the inside in a bid for the win. But Oreskovich held on to win by .121 seconds, with Beeksma to his inside.

“Just to catch Nick is quite an accomplishment,” said Beeksma afterwards. Burdick was a strong but distant third despite scrambling to get ready for the event. “We blew up the motor (the night before) in Superior, so we replaced it with a ten-year-old motor,” he explained after the impressive run.

Klopstein and Kern completed the top five. Oreskovich posted the fastest lap of the run with a time of 17.285 seconds.

Paul Wrazidlo of Duluth, MN, who has not raced in several years, had put together a WISSOTA Modified for his daughter Nikki a couple of years back. But Nikki put her dad back in the car for the 2016 season, and by chance he took a ride over to Ashland to race here for the first time in many years. The trip paid off with Paul’s first feature win at ABC since August 1991.

Wrazidlo used the low line to get to the front, but it took him a few laps as Steve Lavasseur outran pole-starter Scott Hudack for the early lead, with Jeff Spacek hot on his tail. Wrazidlo worked low to get by Spacek and then Hudack on successive laps, and on lap 4 he used the same line to take the lead from Lavasseur.

Neil Balduc, who had started right behind Wrazidlo on the inside of row 4, picked his way through traffic to claim third from Spacek on lap 6, and one circuit later he overtook Lavasseur for second. At this point Wrazidlo had a nearly two-second lead on the field, but Balduc narrowed the gap with each tour around. Unfortunately for Balduc, the race stayed green for the entire 20 laps, and Wrazidlo was smooth on his line and hit his marks perfectly. The end result was a .97-second margin of victory and a bonus for the fastest lap of the race at 17.309 for the veteran racer.

Bill Byholm held down a solid third-place finish well ahead of Spacek and Al Uotinen.

Bloomer’s Nick Koehler lost a feature win earlier this summer due to a technical infraction, but he more than made up for it with a stout run and his third career ABC Raceway win in the WISSOTA Midwest Modified 15-lap A-main. After a five-car melee with one lap in the books, Koehler, who started on row 3, stole second place away from pole-starting rookie Tyler Hudack and set off to hunt down early leader Tanner Hicks.

On lap 3 Koehler used an inside move to take the lead, and over the next seven laps he extended his advantage to 1.8 seconds, while behind him drivers changed positions with frequency. One driver on a mission to the front was Ryan Adamzak, who took over third just before Koehler took the lead, while Wayne Stricker and Paul Suzik also made strong advances through the field.

Adamzak caught and eventually passed Hicks on lap 11, just before Brandon Copp’s spin brought the field back to Koehler’s rear push-bar. But on that restart Suzik and Hicks tried inside passes on Adamzak to regain their spots, and contact broke Adamzak loose, causing several cars to dodge and dive and eventually collect in a grinding crash on the back straightaway.

Koehler held strong over the final five laps on his way to the win, pulling away to a final advantage of 1.5 seconds while setting the fast circuit of the race in the process at 17.442 seconds. Hicks came home second ahead of Suzik, but the defending champ was penalized two positions in the final rundown for a jump of a restart. That gave third spot to Stricker and fourth to Tyler Vernon.

Ashland’s Tiffany Hudack strengthened her command of the ABC Six-Cylinder points standings after a sweep of her heat and the division’s 15-lap feature on Saturday. However, Hudack took advantage of others’ bad luck rather than her fast race car for her fourth A-main win of the season and third in a row.

The 17-car field clicked off its first nine laps of the feature non-stop, with Tyler Vernon pulling away to a strong early lead. Bubba Anderson used a three-wide move to take second after a couple of laps, and some close-quarters racing resulted in a couple of drivers checking up, allowing Scott Ovaksa to steal third on lap 3.

Anderson reeled in Vernon over the course of the next six laps, while Hudack was stuck in traffic just outside of the top five. On lap 9 Anderson was just about to pull alongside Vernon in a challenge for the lead, but the yellow lights came on for the first time in the race when Brendon Ottman and DeJay Jarecki got together in turn 2.

Hudack used a strong inside move to get by Ovaska for fourth on the restart, with Neil Adamzak following her to fifth, and then two laps later Anderson was spun by third-running Forrest Schultz. When Anderson spun again Hudack was assigned second for that re-do, and then Joe Newago spun to stop the pace again; this time Vernon pulled to the infield with a badly-smoking engine, giving Hudack the point for the final restart with three laps to go. She wasn’t about to let the opportunity get away, as she set sail to a 2.4-second margin of victory.

Jeremy Lindquist also took advantage of the shifting of fortunes to claim a career-best runner-up finish, while Ovaska was right with him at the stripe for third. Anderson recovered for fourth-place money and the bonus for posting the fastest lap at 18.489 seconds, while Jarecki completed the top five.

A caution-filled WISSOTA Pure Stock 15-lapper kicked off the feature portion of the program, with Randy Graham of Trego inheriting the lead and holding on for his third win of the season. Defending track champ Matt Deragon, back in a Pure Stock after a frustrating stint in the Mid-Mods, grabbed the early lead from the pole and retained that lead after several restarts, including one on lap 3 just before Graham took second from Randy Conner. A lap later visitor Justin Madsen moved by Conner to third.

After a couple more delays the field completed three clean circuits, but on lap 7 Deragon looped his ride in front of the field, giving the lead to Graham. Justin Weinberger, who had claimed second, challenged Graham on several occasions, but despite two more yellow-flag slowdowns keeping the field close Graham held on and eventually pulled away for the win. After Weinberger came Andrew Hanson, Conner and visitor Al Rapp in the top five.

The ABC Raceway will hold its qualifying features for the Afco Race of Champions for its WISSOTA divisions next Saturday, to be presented by the Safari Tavern of Ashland. The feature winners will be invited to represent the Raceway in the Race of Champions at the Dakota State Fair Speedway in Huron, SD, on September 14-17, as part of the WISSOTA 100 race weekend.

In addition, the track will hold its previously rained-out “Summer Sizzler” event for the Six-Cylinders, to be presented by the Lake Shore Cafe, and the Northern Vintage Stockcar Racers club will bring several old-time race cars to town for their annual visit. Fans are invited to get to the track early for a chance to see some of the vintage racers up close in the grandstand parking area prior to the race program.

Hot laps will be at 6:15 pm, and the first green-flag racing of the night should follow by around 7. Adult tickets are $11, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information visit the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com, or call the track on racedays at (715) 682-4990.

ABC to Host Super Stock Challenge Series on Saturday

July 16th, 2016

Ashland, WI — On Saturday night, the Northland Super Stock Challenge Series, presented by FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating of Ashland, will visit the ABC Raceway.

The Series, in its second season, will take place over three consecutive nights at three very different race tracks. After kicking off on Friday night at the AmsOil Speedway in Superior, the Series travels through Ashland before finishing up at the Proctor (MN) Speedway on Sunday, July 17. Along the way, upwards of 40 WISSOTA Super Stock drivers from three states and Canada are expected to compete for their share of a total purse currently set to exceed $20,000.

In 2015, Curt Myers of Cameron was unbeatable during the Series, capturing heat races at all three tracks and then sweeping all three features, and earned a healthy $4,500 in purse and points fund monies for his efforts. Myers continued on to win WISSOTA’s National Championship in the division.

As of press time, the total 2016 Series payout is set to include feature winner’s shares of $600 each at Superior and Ashland and $500 at Proctor, as well as $1,050 to the overall points champion. In addition, there is currently a $900 bonus available if a driver can sweep all three feature wins, as Myers did in 2015.

The top ten in final Series standings will receive points fund checks, and every driver who participates at all three tracks during the Series but finishes outside of the top ten in points will receive bonuses as well. To top it all off, the drivers who pass the most cars in each feature, as well as the one who passes the most cars cumulatively in all three features, will receive “hard charger” bonus monies, while race car chassis manufacturers Affordable Race Cars and FastLane Motorsports each have generous contingency plans awaiting the drivers.

At ABC, all five weekly divisions will be in action – the WISSOTA Modifieds, Midwest Mods and Pure Stocks, plus the ABC Six-Cylinders, as well as the Super Stocks. This will be a full points-paying show for all divisions, with qualifying heats and feature races for all classes.

The Raceway’s live pre-race radio program, “Z-93 Race Night,” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information. Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, followed by the first of the two make-up features at 7. Adult tickets are just $11 each, and kids ages 12 and under are admitted free with a paid adult admission.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on anytime to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Eder Takes Three at ABC on Saturday

July 11th, 2016

Ashland, WI- Kevin Eder felt a need to apologize for one of his feature wins at Ashland on Saturday night.

He had no reason to apologize for the other two.

Eder, of Ashland, became only the second driver in the ABC Raceway’s 52-year history to win three feature victories in one night, taking wins in both the regularly-scheduled and May 21 make-up A-mains for the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds as well as in the WISSOTA Modified headliner, as the ABC Raceway hosted its annual kids’ bike race night, presented by Chicago Iron & Supply of Ashland.

In the regularly-slated Mid-Mod run of the PolyDome Dirt Track Series show, Eder leaned a little on leader Nick Koehler while battling for the lead halfway through the 20-lap event, just as a caution flag waived for a spinning Tanner Byholm. The contact sent Koehler to the pit area to check for damage, but he was able to return and nearly climbed his way back into the top ten.

“I feel kinda bad about bumping the 13 car there,” Eder said in Victory Lane after the run. “He was definitely the fastest car on the track, and I shouldn’t have taken out the fastest car.”

Eder was no slouch himself during the early stages of the run, slipping past pole-starter Ryan Barningham into second behind Tanner Hicks just one lap in. Eder then switched to the outside line and drove past Hicks on the very next go-around. Koehler worked his way past Hicks and Barningham into second on lap 3, but by lap 5 Eder had a lead of over a half-second.

Koehler benefitted from a lap 6 caution for Marcus Dunbar’s spun racer, and he took advantage two laps later by getting low on Eder and swiping the lead away. But then came Byholm’s spin on lap 10, along with the contact between the lead pair, and when Koehler dove into the pit area, Eder had the lead back for good.

Eder rebuilt a comfortable margin – over three seconds by lap 17 – while a very impressive Barningham fended off Paul Suzik’s determined charge for second. Robert Hyde’s spin with three to go eliminated Eder’s cushion, and two more restarts – for visiting Canadian Mike Jacques’ stalled ride and for a two-car spin – kept the field close, but Eder held on for the win.

Wayne Stricker clawed his way past Cole Spacek on the final lap for second place, while Barningham finished fourth ahead of Hicks. Koehler set the race’s fastest lap with a time of 17.538 seconds.

Earlier in the program, Eder headed to the first of his wins in the Mid-Mod make-up run, starting with an pass of George Dalbeck for the lead after five laps of close-quarters racing. Dalbeck struggled with an ill-running car and faded after Hicks, Spacek and others overtook him on a lap 6 restart, and just before mid-race Byholm began a charge to the front, taking third from Spacek.

Three attempts to restart the race after Cy Hoaglan’s stalled ride on lap 11 kept the field from recording a lap, but then Eder cruised away. Byholm took second from Hicks after the last of the three restarts, and Tad Bretting and Suzik rounded out the top five. Dalbeck set an early fast lap with a time of 17.450 seconds.

Eder capped off his memorable night with the win in the “big Mod” 20-lapper, which was run immediately after the second of his Mid-Mod wins. Jeff Spacek slipped past polesitter Scott Hudack for the early lead, but Eder drew right up close to Spacek’s rear push-bar within just a couple of brief circuits. And when Eder grabbed a big bite off of turn 2 on lap 6, he drove by the six-time track champion and into the lead.

Neil Balduc provided the biggest threat of the run for Eder, once he got past Spacek into second on lap 9. Without a caution flag to help his cause, Balduc chipped away at Eder’s one-and-a-half-second lead until he was within a car-length with two laps remaining. But that was all the closer he would get, as Eder finished a half-second up on Balduc for his third win of the night. Bill Byholm edged past Spacek on the white-flag lap for third, and Rick Rivord crossed under the checkers in fifth with a flat right-front tire.

Balduc’s 17.453-second lap during the middle stages of the run was the fastest posted lap of the race. Eder’s overall effort matched one put up by Jeff Spacek back in 2003, when the Phillips veteran chalked up three wins during one of the Raceway’s “Modified Triple Header” events.

Terran Spacek and Cory Casari battled tooth-and-nail for the lead during the early laps of the WISSOTA Super Stock feature, but neither could hold back Scott Lawrence, who took over the point on lap 3. Lawrence, in turn, had his hands full with Shane Kisling, who grabbed second from Casari on lap 5, just before Aaron Mashlan spun to bring about a caution slowdown.

From that point on, it was Nick Oreskovich that the field had to worry about. The “Flyin’ Farmer” restarted fourth, took third right after the restart, and then, after several stoppages in quick sequence, slipped past Kisling for second on lap 10. He then changed lanes and drove around Lawrence for the lead on lap 12.

Lawrence didn’t let go of the lead easily, sticking a nose under Oreskovich on a couple of occasions as the laps wound down. But Oreskovich, of Mason, held on for his second feature win of the year here, and set the fastest lap of the race in the process at 17.583 seconds. Kisling, a charging Patrick Beeksma, and Jeff Klopstein completed the top five.

For a little while, anyway, Ashland’s Tiffany Hudack was the track’s feature win leader on the season, after she scored her third ABC Six-Cylinder win to kick off the regular slate of A-mains. Hudack started mid-pack in the 15-car field, but thanks to a strong run and several mid-race cautions she was able to take the lead away from Scott Ovaska.

Front-row starter Bubba Anderson pulled off just as the field took the green flag, causing some early-race anxiety for the field, but Adam Traaholt cleared the chaos and led the first couple of laps. Ovaska tracked him down and got around him, and Dale Coddington followed into second on lap 4, with Hudack right on Coddington’s heels.

Ovaska had a nice two-second cushion and was cruising along until the first of Derek Milligan’s two spins put the field right back on his trunk lid. The first restart was aborted by debris on the race surface, and two laps later came Milligan’s second spin. That’s when Hudack charged past both Coddington and Ovaska on the restart and took over the pace, which she set for the remainder of the run even after Coddington’s stalled racer drew a caution on lap 9. Hudack’s final winning margin was just shy of two seconds, and her lap of 18.267 seconds was the fastest of the race.

Tyler Vernon, who started dead last of the 15 cars on the grid, used the restarts to climb to second at the pay window, ahead of Ovaska, DeJay Jarecki, and rookie Joshua Saunders.

Michael Blevins of Hibbing, MN, made a rare appearance in Ashland on Saturday, and it paid off for his second career feature win here. Blevins, who like Hudack, started from the outside of row 4, and he spent the first four laps of the 15-lap run tracking down early leader Randy Conner. But Blevins was aided by two early yellow flags – one for Nick Paoli’s spin, and the other for a get-together which involved top-five runners Don Livingston and Brandle Pupp.

After Randy Graham got by Justin Weinberger for second on the latter restart, Blevins returned the favor on Graham, and within a lap he was alongside Conner and taking over the lead. Graham’s spin on lap 5 would be the final delay of the night, after which Blevins attempted to shake loose of the challenges presented by Weinberger, who stuck to Blevins’ rear bumper for as long as he could. Only over the final two laps did Blevins have enough breathing room, posing the win a couple car-lengths up on Weinberger. Conner held on for third, just ahead of Andrew Hanson and Pupp.

Bike race winners included Cayden Cook (2-5 year-old age group), Xander Beeksma (6-7), Tanner Schmidt (8-9), and Ryan Sharpe (11-12). In an open age-group one-lap event, 13-year-old Mid-Mod driver Jared Stricker topped a strong field consisting of both kids and stock-car racers.

Five bikes were given away to lucky young fans, courtesy of the AmericInn of Ashland and the ABC Raceway. Also, Chicago Iron & Supply gave away many nice prizes to the fans, including t-shirts, gift certificates and concession-stand vouchers.

Next Saturday night, the ABC Raceway will host race number two of the three-track, three-night Northland Super Stock Challenge Series, to be presented by FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating of Ashland. As many as 30 or more Super Stock drivers are expected to compete in the Series, which starts the Friday night before in Superior and ends on the Sunday after in Proctor, MN. All five weekly divisions will be in action.

Hot laps will be at 6:15 pm, and the first green-flag racing of the night should follow by around 7. Adult tickets are $11, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information visit the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com, or call the track on racedays at (715) 682-4990.

Kids Take to the Track at ABC on Saturday

July 10th, 2016

Ashland, WI — After a three-week hiatus, the ABC Raceway will fire up the second half of its 2016 schedule on Saturday night with one of its most popular and longest-running yearly events.

During the kids’ bike races, to be presented by Chicago Iron & Supply of Ashland, children ages 2 through pre-teen will be grouped into various age divisions and invited to race their bicycles on the same red-clay oval as their heroes. It’s an event that has been a staple of the annual schedule at the national award-winning stock car racing facility in northern Wisconsin for decades.

“Many of the drivers we now have competing on a weekly basis at the ABC Raceway got their starts by racing their bikes out here years ago,” according to Raceway Board president Eric Erickson. “Who knows? Maybe on Saturday night we’ll see a bike race winner who will one day become a racing star of the future!”

The bike races will be included along with a complete slate of qualifying heats and feature action for the track’s five weekly divisions – WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds, Super Stocks, Midwest Modifieds and Pure Stocks, plus the ABC Raceway Six-Cylinders. The program will kick off with the make-up feature owed to the Midwest Mods from the shortened May 21 season opener.

The track last saw racing action on June 18. Since that night, a severe thunderstorm wiped out any chance of running the June 25 program, and the Raceway Board had voted last Winter not scheduled a show on July 2, in honor of the Independence Day weekend.

“Our racers, our fans, and our staff are excited about getting back to the track,” Erickson said earlier this week. “We have a very exciting line-up of race programs set for the rest of the summer, and we hope folks will make their way to the Raceway and find out what all the excitement is about.”

The Raceway’s live pre-race radio program, “Z-93 Race Night,” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information. Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, followed by the first of the two make-up features at 7. Adult tickets are just $11 each, and kids ages 12 and under are admitted free with a paid adult admission.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on anytime to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Thunderstorms Spoil Sixes’ Sizzler Night at ABC

June 26th, 2016

Ashland, WI — A violent thunderstorm rolled through northern Ashland County just as the Six-Cylinders had completed their time trials and wiped out what was set to be a very busy night of stock car racing and more at the ABC Raceway on Saturday night.

The full five-division PolyDome Dirt Track Series program, which was to be presented by Lake Shore Cafe of Ashland, was also going to include the postponed Kids’ Meet the Drivers Night activities from June 4 and the make-up WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature from the abbreviated May 21 season opener.

The Raceway will now take a weekend off for the Independence Day holiday observation before hitting the second half of its 2016 season at full stride. Events scheduled for July include kids’ bike races on the 9th, the middle race of the three-night Northland Super Stock Challenge Series on the 16th, the WISSOTA Race of Champions qualifier features on the 23rd, and the “Modified Mayhem” special on the 30th.

Rescheduling of the three events cancelled from last Saturday’s show will be announced at a later date.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information visit the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com, or call the track on racedays at (715) 682-4990.

Fans to Meet Drivers, Sixes & Mid-Mods in Spotlight at ABC on Saturday

June 26th, 2016

Ashland, WI — Another busy night awaits fans attending the stock car racing program at the ABC Raceway on Saturday night.

The tenth annual running of the “Summer Sizzler” for the track’s Six-Cylinder racers, to be presented by the Lake Shore Cafe of Ashland, will be the headline act at the three-eighths-mile red-clay oval just south of Ashland, but it won’t be the only featured event. In addition, the Raceway will host its annual Kids’ Meet the Drivers festivities, thanks to Little Caesar’s Pizza of Ashland. Plus, the make-up feature for the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds, originally slated for the shortened May 21 opener, will also be part of the program.

Add all that to the regular schedule of heats and features for the track’s five weekly divisions – WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds, Super Stocks and Pure Stocks, plus the Mid-Mods and Sixes – and fans will get another jam-packed racing program for the best adult-ticket price in the region.

The Sixes, which have been a part of the offering at ABC since 1983, will be running for a nicely-enhanced purse, including a winner’s-share $650. The defending champion of the event is 2014 track points champ Dale Coddington of Hayward, who is also the only past winner of this race still active in the Six-Cylinder division.

Other “Sizzler” winners include Neil Adamzak (2010 & ’14), Tyler Hudack (’13), Pat Beeksma (’12), Don Muzzy (’11), CJ Polacek (’09), and Travis Swanson (’07-’08).

Prior to the Mid-Mod make-up feature, track officials will ask the drivers to bring their race cars onto the front straightway, where fans of all ages will be invited onto the track to get an up-close look at the machines and meet their favorite drivers, and perhaps even get a photo, autograph or other treat from them.

Fans are invited to tune in to “Z-93 Race Night,” which will air from 4:30 until 6 pm on Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, with up-to-date track news and weather information.

Hot laps are scheduled to start at 6:15 pm, and track officials hope to start the on-track meet-and-greet session by 6:30. The Midwest Mod make-up feature will see the green flag shortly after 7, followed by the complete regular program, which will be capped off by the Sixes’ special event.

Adult tickets are just $11 each, and kids ages 12 and under are admitted free with a paid adult admission. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on anytime to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Stuart, Graham Go Back-to-Back at ABC

June 21st, 2016

Ashland, WI — Ashland’s Steve Stuart and Trego’s Randy Graham repeated as feature winners on Saturday night, as the ABC Raceway offered a “buy-one-get-one-free” adult grandstand admission ticket deal to race fans, courtesy of the Legendary Waters Resort & Casino of Red Cliff and Heartland Communications of Ashland.

For the third PolyDome Dirt Track Series race program of the season, the 88 cars in the pit area were greeted by a race track that was significantly different than the black-slick red-clay oval that they had raced on the Saturday before. Instead, a heavier, tackier surface brought speeds up significantly, with two single-lap track records bested during feature action.

Stuart started on row 4 for the 20-lap WISSOTA Modified A-main but took advantage of polestarter Scott Hudack’s breakdown after a bobble up in turn 2. As the field sped by, Paul Niznik got sideways down the back straight and collected Al Uotinen.

After a second attempt to start the run, Stuart took to his preferred low groove and drove past Pat Cook into second place, while Brian Mikkonen slipped up to the high side and shot to the lead. The pair raced side-by-side for a couple of laps before Steve Lavasseur’s stalled car brought about a caution flag.

On the ensuing restart Lavasseur pulled back onto the track after a visit to the pits just as the field was charging down the back straight under green. Mikkonen checked up to avoid contact, forcing the trailing Jeff Spacek to stop dead in turn 4, but the field continued on until the yellow caution lights were thrown. That’s when Dustin Hudack slipped up high in turn 1, caught the berm and barrel-rolled wildly across the top of the corner. He was helped out of the destroyed car but was unhurt.

The race ran non-stop over the final 17 laps, with Mikkonen and Stuart continuing their door-to-door battle and swapping the lead on nearly lap. Stuart finally gained the advantage for good on lap 14 with a strong charge off the bottom of turn 2, although he did not entirely pull away, as Niznik drove back into contention and was on Stuart’s tail at the checkers, just alongside third-finishing Mikkonen.

A strong run by Destin Lorimor earned him fourth-place money, just ahead of Spacek. Neil Balduc took home the fast-lap bonus with a time of 16.808 seconds.

In the make-up of the May 21 Mod feature, polestarter Kevin Eder of Ashland took the lead from Lavasseur on lap 5 and set the pace the rest of the way for his first win of the season here. The first 18 laps clicked off without delay as several side-by-side battles were sprinkled throughout the field.

Eder held nearly a full second on Lavasseur when Scott Hudack’s spin forced a green-white-checkered finish, but Eder nearly rebuilt that margin as he sped to the win. Uotinen slipped past Lavasseur for second on the restart, and Bill Byholm and Spacek completed the top five. Lavasseur posted the fastest circuit in that 20-lapper with a lap of 16.196 seconds – just two-tenths of a second off Stuart’s track record set last July.

Graham followed up his first career feature win last Saturday with a dandy run in the WISSOTA Pure Stock main event. Graham, who started on the fourth row, was one of two cars that stalled in the first corner on the initial start in an attempt to avoid an incident involving Chad Carlson. After that the 15-lap run ran non-stop, with Don Livingston leading the way.

When Livingston slowed and faded after lap 2, Andrew Hanson took over as the pace-setter, with Justin Weinberger challenging. Graham, who had clawed his way to third, drew up to the lead pair, and on lap 7 he dove inside for a three-wide move to take over the lead. Hanson, Weinberger and Brandle Pupp then duked it out for second, with Weinberger taking the position when Hanson broke loose and slipped back with three laps left.

Weinberger chased down and threatened Graham over the closing laps, but Graham held on for the back-to-back win. Hanson, Pupp and Jeff Christman followed in the top five.

Dave Flynn of Superior led flag-to-flag in a hotly-contested 20-lap WISSOTA Super Stock feature that was delayed by a track-lighting issue with seven laps to go. Flynn, who started on the pole, lost a side-by-side battle with Cory Casari over the first lap, but Greg Kuklinski’s spin negated Casari’s pass, and from there Flynn held a slim lead for the next 13 laps.

Just behind the leader, Casari had his hands full with Jeff Klopstein’s threats, while Nick Oreskovich charged up to challenge Pat Beeksma for fourth. With the front runners in a tight pack the race seemed poised for a great finish, but as the leaders passed under the flag stand to complete lap 13 a bank of lights that illuminated part of the back straightaway shut down, creating a dangerous situation that brought about a stoppage.

Pit crews made repairs in about a half-hour, and from there two more restarts slowed the pace – one for a three-car mess involving Beeksma on lap 15, and another for the stalled and damaged ride of Cory Marincel on lap 16. However, Flynn held strong and led the field to his first win here this season. Casari took over second on the latter of the two restarts, but Oreskovich swept around him on lap 17 and followed Flynn home by .84 seconds.

Randy Spacek and Scott Lawrence, who made up row 3 to start the race, came home fourth and fifth. Oreskovich set the fast time with a 17.154-second circuit.

Oreskovich, of Mason, led from start to finish in the Super Stocks’ May 21 make-up feature that kicked off the program and set a new track single-lap record for the division in the process. Starting from the pole, the “Flyin’ Farmer” held off a strong run by Casari through all 20 laps, including after restarts stemming from five caution-flag slowdowns.

The last of the slowdowns came with eight laps remaining, when debris on the track eliminated a 1.85-second cushion that Oreskovich had built up over Casari. Still, Oreskovich raced the remaining laps to a slight margin over Casari at the final stripe, and somewhere over those last few tours he posted a lap time of 16.686 seconds, besting the old mark of 16.817 seconds set by Curt Myers in 2015. Randy Spacek edged Beeksma and Lawrence in a tight battle for third.

Visiting driver Nick Koehler, coming off of a feature win on Thursday at Jim Falls, used a strong move to drive past Tad Bretting and sped off to what he thought was his first WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature win in Ashland in two years, but a technical inspection after the race took his win away and gave it to Cole Spacek of Phillips.

Spacek, who started on the pole, battled with Bretting over the first seven laps of the 20-lap A-main, with Paul Suzik, Koehler and Wayne Stricker hot on their tails. Spacek gained the advantage on lap 6 with an inside move, and Suzik was poised to follow into second a lap later, but Ryan Barningham brought out the first of five caution flags with a spin.

After Tanner Hicks’ car stalled, Bretting slipped around Spacek on the restart, and Koehler followed into second. A lap after the halfway point Koehler pulled off what was thought at the time to be the winning move, diving low to take the lead from Bretting. From that point on Koehler was in command and ran away from the field after each of the race’s three remaining caution stops. Over the final seven green-flag laps Koehler had built up a 5.25-second lead in a dominant performance, while Spacek -who took second back from Bretting on the last restart – held off a strong effort by Suzik.

A post-race technical inspection found Koehler’s car illegal by WISSOTA rule, giving the win to Spacek. Behind Suzik in the top five were Bretting, Stricker and 13th-starting Tanner Byholm.

Koehler’s fast lap of 16.878 seconds did break Mike Truscott’s Mid-Mod single-lap record by 57 one-thousandths of a second.

Technically, Tiffany Hudack of Ashland also went
back-to-back in winning the Six-Cylinder feature on this night, although her feature win from the week before was officially for the postponed May 21 season opener. Hudack had to start eighth on the 12-car feature grid but used a sweet three-wide move to take the lead just six laps into the 15-lap run.

Rookie Dalton Truchon led early but was overtaken by veteran Scott Ovaska on lap 3. Forrest Schultz grabbed second place one circuit later, and after two more laps Steve Martin – driving Bubba Anderson’s ride- spun to slow the pace.

Schultz tried an inside move on Ovaska to take the lead away just after the restart, but the pair slipped wide in turn 4 and opened up the bottom for Hudack, who scooted by and sped away. The only thing left to slow the 2014 track champ down was a lap 9 caution for debris, and she was a full 4.5 seconds ahead when she scored her fourth career feature win. She also posted a 18.425-second fast lap during the run.

Martin recovered for a strong second-place run in his first night racing here, just edging Ovaska and Schultz at the stripe. Truchon crossed the line fifth but was later disqualified for a short wheelbase on his car, handing the position to Adam Traaholt.

Next Saturday night, the ABC Raceway will offer up the second of its five divisional specials with its tenth annual Six-Cylinder “Summer Sizzler,” presented by Lake Shore Cafe. In addition to the Sixes running for an enhanced purse, the track will hold its Kids’ Meet the Drivers Night festivities, and the postponed Mid-Mod feature from the shortened May 21 season opener will also take place.

Hot laps will be at 6:15 pm, and the on-track “meet-and- greet” session is expected to start at around 6:30. The first green-flag racing of the night should follow by around 7. Adult tickets are $11, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a saying adult. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information visit the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com, or call the track on racedays at (715) 682-4990.

ABC Raceway Announces Hall of Fame Class of ’16

June 15th, 2016

Ashland, WI, June 11 — The ABC Raceway announced during its race program on Saturday night that it will induct nine new members into its Hall of Fame in August.

The Class of 2016 Inductees were nominated by fans and by the Raceway’s Nomination and Selection Committee, based upon their achievements, accomplishments and records of success in stock car racing during the northern Wisconsin speedplant’s 50-plus years of existence.

CG Bretting Manufacturing, Co, Inc, of Ashland was selected as a unanimous inductee based on its longtime and ongoing service to the Raceway, its drivers and the racing community as a whole. The Bretting family and their business’s many employees have been actively involved in support of the activities at the Raceway since the track’s earliest seasons.

Four inductees were elected in the Volunteers & Contributors category, which recognizes those individuals and families that have donated a minimum of ten years of service and are recognized for their significant positive contributions to the overall success of the Raceway. The four inductees include Kurt Beeksma, Ray & Dawn Berglund, Don & Alice Hudack, and Rudy & Lorraine Marincel.

Four former racers were also chosen for the Class of 2016: Mel Ferguson, Jerry Hartman, Johnny Johnson and Ron Weinberger. In order to be eligible, drivers are to have been retired from active racing for a minimum of five seasons, and their selection is based upon their accomplishments at the ABC Raceway, their loyalty to the track, and their actions as ambassadors of the Raceway when competing at other tracks.

The Class of 2016 brings the total to 30 inductees that have been so honored since the Raceway founded its Hall of Fame during its 50th anniversary season in 2014.

A special luncheon celebrating those chosen will take place on August 13, and the inductees will be formally introduced at that evening’s race event at the track.

Halopka Takes ABC ‘Mid-Mod Madness’ Win

June 15th, 2016

Ashland, WI, June 11 — With 112 cars entered in the pit area and extra features on the docket, fans in the stands at the ABC Raceway on Saturday night probably knew they might be in for a long night with a lot of action. And they were right.

The NAPA Auto Parts Stores of Ashland & Washburn presented the tenth annual “Midwest Mod Madness” special at the northern Wisconsin speedplant, with bonus money contributed for the special event by Dalbeck Logging and Lake Shore Cafe generously spread about. In addition, the track ran its first set of make-up features from the shortened May 21 race program. As a result, it wasn’t until after midnight that Greenwood’s Shane Halopka collected the $1,000 first-place check and winner’s trophy.

Despite the significant rainfall in the area over the past two weeks, the track became hard, smooth and slick, which may have contributed to the unusually large number of caution flags throughout the 22 races run on this cool, breezy night.

The PolyDome Dirt Track Series program was kicked off by timed “batch qualifying” for the 39 WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds in attendance. Dave Flynn of Superior posted the quickest single-lap time of 18.085 seconds, earning himself the pole position for his heat race.

The evening of action was completed by a 24-car, 25-lap feature that, in essence, lived up to its billing. Halopka, who started outside on the front row, shot to the initial lead ahead of a three-wide battle for second that was eventually won by Jesse Aho. The first four laps clicked off without a hitch, but just as Aho made a move to the inside on the leader, Austin Ellis and Paul Suzik collided to spark a series of yellow-flag slowdowns that kept the participants from getting into any sort of rhythm.

After a three-car mess on the restart, Aho and Ryan Adamzak debated second place just behind Halopka for a couple of laps, while Curt Myers made gains on the outside line in getting by Flynn for fifth behind Dan Kingsley. But after a lap 10 spin by Bill Byholm – driving his son Tanner’s car – it would take five attempts to complete another lap, with the first of those attempts resulting in a melee that involved five of the top
11 runners and knocking Flynn from contention.

During each restart Aho shook off the persistent Adamzak and stuck right to the rear bumper of Halopka’s car, although he was unable to overtake the leader. Then, just prior to a lap 11 restart, tenth-starting Nick Oreskovich – filling in for the absent Kevin Eder – grabbed third place from Adamzak. That restart put Oreskovich in perfect position to swipe second away from Aho, but it also allowed Halopka to finally gain some
breathing room and pull away over the closing laps to a 2.61-second margin of victory and become the ninth different winner of the special event.

Adamzak, who started on the pole, held on for fourth ahead of Wayne Stricker, who won one of the two semi-features in order to make the main event and started 18th on the grid. Halopka also set the fast lap of
the race with a time of 17.922 seconds.

The WISSOTA Modifieds ran off what was, by comparison, a fast-paced 20-lap A-main, with former track champ Steve Stuart of Ashland leading green-to-checkered for the win. Stuart, like Halopka, started outside on the front row and grabbed the point going into the first turn, and he stayed there after a lap 2 restart for debris.

Over the course of an eight-lap green-flag run Stuart hugged the bottom groove of the three-eighths-mile oval, while first Neil Balduc and then visitor Mike Anderson worked the outer line to mount a challenge. Anderson changed lanes to take second away on lap 4, but once there he went back to the rim to try to reel Stuart in.

Just prior to the race’s midpoint Steve Lavasseur slipped past Balduc for third, and Al Uotinen used a low-lane move for a three-wide pass of Kevin Adams and Byholm for fifth. Then Scott Hudack looped his ride on lap 10 to bring out the yellow flag and eliminate Stuart’s 1.25-second buffer.

On lap 16 Uotinen took fourth from Lavasseur, and later in that circuit Byholm and Balduc got together to slow the pace. Balduc returned the favor on Uotinen after the restart, and Hudack’s second spin set up a green-white-checkered finish, but Stuart was up to the task and held off Anderson for the win.

Uotinen snuck past both Balduc and Lavasseur on the final lap for third-place money. Stuart also claimed the fast-lap bonus with a time of 17.810 seconds.

Cameron’s Curt Myers was the man to beat in the 20-lap WISSOTA Super Stock feature, but it took nearly half of the run for him to get to the front. A lot of that long trek had to do with the fact that the defending national champion had to start from the fifth row of the 23-car field and pass a lot of high-quality competition in order to get there.

Aaron Mashlan’s first-lap spin spoiled Greg Kuklinski’s dash to the early lead, so on the restart polesitter Andy Grymala didn’t let the Raceway’s all-time feature wins leader make that move again. Shawn McFadden Jr moved into second place behind Grymala on lap 2, and on the restart after Charlie Anderson’s lap 4 spin McFadden moved inside on Grymala and took over the point, with Pat Beeksma making it three-wide as he went high-side around Grymala for second.

After Keith Corcilius’ spin a lap later, Myers – who restarted fifth – dropped low to move by Shane Kisling and then Grymala to claim third. Myers then tried the high side to challenge Beeksma, but Kyle Helling stopped the run with his bobble.

Myers made an outside move to pull alongside McFadden on the restart, and on lap 9 he cleared for the lead, while Kisling used the same move to take third from Beeksma and brought 11th-starting Oreskovich along to fourth. Kisling continued to ride the rim to get around McFadden for second on lap 13, and then two circuits later McFadden’s car began to smoke and slow dramatically; he attempted to dive out of the way into the infield, but Scott Lawrence had already committed to an inside move to pass him, and the two collided, sending Lawrence into the air and then spinning into the infield grass.

Myers held on over the final five laps for the win, and along the way he posted the race’s fastest lap with a time of 17.966 seconds. Oreskovich slipped past Kisling for second on lap 16 and stayed on Myers’ trunklid for the rest of the run. Lawrence passed three cars over those final four laps to take fourth, and Jeff Klopstein Jr followed him into fifth.

The ABC Six-Cylinders and WISSOTA Pure Stocks ran their make-up features from the shortened May 21 season opener as well as their complete slate of races for this night. The Sixes’ regularly-scheduled A-main was a nailbiter for pole-starter Bubba Anderson of Trego, whose car emitted a light but foreboding cloud of smoke almost from the very drop of the green flag.

Anderson shot out to the initial lead and had built a 1.22-second advantage over DeJay Jarecki over the first couple of laps. But by lap 5 Jarecki and Tiffany Hudack had reeled in the leader, and both were in perfect position to overtake Anderson on the restart after Bella Bretting’s spin on lap 5.

Hudack worked her way around Jarecki for second on the re-do, but that pass was wiped out by Dalton Truchon’s looped ride. Hudack repeated the move with the next green flag, and this time it stuck, but it was all she could do to find a way around Anderson, who held a steady line throughout the rest of the run.

Dale Coddington, who started alongside Hudack on row 4, swept around folks as he worked his way to the front, and once he caught the lead pair he was able to pull alongside Anderson and challenge for the lead. But he ran out of momentum and settled back into third behind Hudack, while Anderson held on for his second career feature win here. Jarecki and Forrest Schultz rounded out the top five, and Hudack set the fast lap at 18.923
seconds.

Hudack was dominant in the Sixes’ make-up feature held earlier in the program, taking the lead from pole-starter Jeremy Lindquist on lap 9 of 15 and cruising to the win, while again claiming the fast-lap bonus with a tour in 19.029 seconds.

A huge crash collected nearly half of the 15-car field and forced early exits for a couple of cars, including Anderson’s. But when Lindquist stumbled just a bit while trying to hold off Hudack’s challenges, the 2014 track champ from Ashland slipped by and ran away to her fourth career feature win. Lindquist also gave up second to Schultz for just a moment late in the run but got it back before the checkers, while Adam Traaholt and Brendon Ottman enjoyed rare top-five runs.

The regularly-scheduled Pure Stock 15-lap A-main saw Trego’s Randy Graham earn his first career feature win, and a hard-earned one at that. In the early going Graham held off a strong challenge from pole-starter Jeff Christman, with the pair swapping the lead before Graham claimed it for good on lap 3. Then, after a couple of restarts Graham was threatened by Justin Weinberger, who was coming off of a win at Superior the night before. A lap 7 crash involving Tim Carbon and Andrew Hanson – both running in the top-five at the time – gave Weinberger a chance to take the lead away on lap 10, but two circuits later Graham fought back and overtook
Weinberger, and he held on from there for the landmark win.

Tim Carlson and Brandle Pupp were a distant third and fourth, respectively, while Christman – who spun to bring out a caution flag while running third – recovered for a fifth-place effort.

The Pure Stock make-up race started with a handful of lead changes. Pupp started on the pole but spun in the first corner, putting Randy Conner in the lead on the restart. But Graham slipped past Conner after a lap 3 re-do, and then Hanson moved by Tim Carlson and then Graham on lap 5 to claim the top spot. A wreck involving Carlson and Connor stopped the race on lap 7, with Conner’s car receiving significant damage.

Hanson pulled away as Graham’s bobble forced Weinberger and the rest of the field to check up, and then he survived a late-race restart caused by a Graham-Pupp get-together for his first-ever feature win in Ashland. Chad Carlson inherited second on the last restart and stayed there to the end, followed by his brother Tim, Weinberger and Steve Pohl.

Next Saturday night, the ABC Raceway invites everyone to bring a friend to the races, as it will offer a “buy one, get one free” adult grandstand admission ticket offer. The program, to be presented by Heartland Communications and Legendary Waters Resort & Casino, will feature all five regular weekly classes in action, plus the addition of the make-up features for the “big Mods” and Super Stocks.

Hot laps will be at 6:15 pm, and green-flag racing will follow at 7. Adult tickets are $11, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information visit the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com, or call the track on racedays at (715) 682-4990.

ABC Raceway Puts Spotlight on Mid-Mods this Saturday

June 10th, 2016

Ashland, WI — For over a dozen seasons now, the ABC Raceway has set aside one night on its schedule for each of its five weekly racing divisions, offering each class its own “spotlight” event.

The first of those divisional headliners for 2016 will be held this Saturday night, with the tenth annual “Mid-Mod Madness” program for the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds, to be presented by the NAPA Auto Parts stores of Ashland & Washburn.

The feature race for the Midwest Mods will pay a whopping $1,000 to win, thanks to some very generous contributions. In Victory Lane after the run, Mid-Mod racer and former track champ George Dalbeck of Dalbeck Logging of Ironwood, MI, will hand out bonus checks to each of the top five finishers, while drivers finishing in the fifth, tenth, 15th and 20th positions will benefit from the graciousness of Lake Shore Cafe of Ashland.

The program will kick off in a big way right after hot laps with the make-up features from the shortened May 21 event for the WISSOTA Pure Stocks and ABC Six-Cylinders. A complete race program is then on tap for all five divisions, with the WISSOTA Modifieds and Super Stocks jumping in.

Also included in the evening’s festivities will be the announcement of the inductees for the ABC Raceway Hall of Fame for 2016.

The make-up features for the Mods and Supers are tentatively set for June 18, while the Mid-Mod make-up A-main will run on June 25 – the same night as the rescheduled Kids’ Meet the Drivers festivities.

The nine previous editions of this mid-season Mid-Mod series at ABC have been won by eight different drivers, proving just how competitive this division can be. Only Dalbeck – who won in 2010 and again in ’12 – has repeated in this event.

Ashland drivers Steve Stuart (2009) and Travis Nye (’13) are the only two “Madness” winners to continue on to earn ABC points championships after winning this event. And three drivers – Clint Larson of Proctor, MN (2007), Matt Leer of Bruce (’11) and Jesse Aho of Twin Lakes, MI (’15) – scored their only career feature wins in Ashland by claiming this event.

The other winners were Greg Chesley of Duluth, MN, in 2008 and Ashland’s Ryan Adamzak in 2014.

Younger fans ages 3-8 are also invited to sign up for the ABC Raceway Kids’ Club at the track just prior to the races this Saturday. Included in a membership are a Kids’ Club t-shirt, concession coupons, a checkered flag and more.

The Raceway’s live pre-race radio program, “Z-93 Race Night,” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, followed by the first of the two make-up features at 7. Adult tickets are just $11 each, and kids ages 12 and under are admitted free with a paid adult admission.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on anytime to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

ABC Raceway Program Washed Out Again

June 7th, 2016

Ashland, WI,– Due to the significant amount of rain over the past few days and another less-than-ideal forecast, the Board of Directors at the ABC Raceway cancelled its race program set for Saturday night.

The program was to include the popular Little Caesar’s Pizza-sponsored Kids’ Meet the Drivers Night as well as make-up features from the shortened May 21 season opener. However, much of the parking and pit areas are so saturated from the recent rainfall – which has been estimated to be in excess of seven inches since Memorial Day weekend – that access for fans and race teams to the facility would be difficult at best.

The Raceway Board intends to announce its decisions for rescheduling the make-up features from the May 21 event by mid-week.

Next Saturday night’s scheduled event is the tenth annual “Midwest Modified Madness” special, to be presented by the NAPA Auto Parts Stores of Ashland & Washburn, WI. The WISSOTA Midwest Mods will run a full show of qualifying races and a $1,000-to-win main event, while the track’s other regular weekly classes – the WISSOTA Modifieds, Super Stocks and Pure Stocks, and the ABC Six-Cylinders – will compete in a full race program as well.

Hot laps will be at 6:15 pm, and green-flag racing will follow at 7. Adult tickets are $11, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information visit the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com, or call the track on racedays at (715) 682-4990.

Kids Get to Meet Their Favorite Drivers at ABC on Saturday

June 3rd, 2016

Ashland, WI — One of the most anticipated race nights on the ABC Raceway calendar comes up on Saturday, when Little Caesar’s Pizza of Ashland presents the annual Kids’ Meet the Drivers Night.

Prior to race action, drivers will bring their race cars onto the front straightaway of the three-eighths-mile red clay oval located just south of Ashland, at which time fans young and old alike will be welcomed onto the track to get an up-close look at the cars, meet the drivers, and get autographs, pictures and other treats.

“It’s one of the great traditions at our track,” according to Raceway board president Eric Erickson, “and it’s one of the most popular events on the schedule of nearly every short track in racing today.

“It’s especially cool for the younger kids, who get to meet their heroes and see the cars up close. The looks on the kids’ faces and their reactions are really special. And the drivers truly enjoy the chance to meet their fans.”

Immediately following the meet-and-greet session, the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds and ABC Six-Cylinders will hold their make-up features from the shortened May 21 race program, and then the Raceway will get into its regularly-scheduled slate of heats and features for the Sixes and WISSOTA Modifieds, Super Stocks, Midwest Mods and Pure Stocks.

The make-up features for the Mods, Supers and Pure Stocks are currently set for June 11.

The Little Caesar’s Pizza store in Ashland is offering a coupon worth two dollars’ off of an adult admission ticket with the purchase of one of their “Hot ‘n’ Ready” pizzas.

Younger fans ages 3-8 are also invited to sign up for the ABC Raceway Kids’ Club at the track just prior to the races this Saturday. Included in a membership are a Kids’ Club t-shirt, concession coupons, a checkered flag and more.

The Raceway’s live pre-race radio program, “Z-93 Race Night,” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, and the first of the three make-up features will start at 7. Adult tickets are just $11 each (or $9 with the Little Caesar’s coupon), and kids ages 12 and under are admitted free with a paid adult admission.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on anytime to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com

Too Wet to Race at ABC

May 29th, 2016

Ashland, WI — Significant rainfall from the past week in the Chequamegon Bay area, combined with a forecast for more precipitation, forced the Board of Directors of the ABC Raceway to cancel its Armed Forces Night race program, to have been presented by the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce, on Saturday.

The make-up features from the shortened May 21 season opener will now be rescheduled over the next couple of race nights.

The next scheduled race program is set for Saturday, June 4, when Little Caesar’s Pizza of Ashland will host the annual Kids’ Meet the Drivers Night festivities. Fans of all ages will be welcomed onto the track to get an up-close look at the race cars and meet their favorite drivers. Also included in the program will be the make-up features for the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds and the ABC Six-Cylinders.

There will be no pit meeting that night; the on-track meet-and-greet session will start promptly at 6:45 pm.

There will be no pit meeting that night. Hot laps will be at 6:15 pm, the on-track meet-and-greet session will start promptly at 6:45, and green-flag racing will follow shortly after 7. Adult tickets are $11, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

Salute to Armed Forces to Headline ABC Raceway Show on Saturday

May 27th, 2016

Ashland, WI — The ABC Raceway will honor those who have bravely served in our country’s military by hosting Armed Services Night, presented by the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce, on Saturday night.

All active and retired service personnel showing a valid military ID will be admitted free of charge at the main grandstand gate of the three-eighths-mile red clay oval located just south of Ashland for the May 28 race program.

“It’s the least we can do to show our appreciation to those men and women who have done so much and given so selflessly to protect and preserve our freedom,” stated Raceway board president Eric Erickson earlier this week.

All fans in attendance will be treated to a night of bonus race action, as WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds, Super Stocks, Midwest Mods and Pure Stocks, plus the track’s own Six-Cylinders, will run a complete program of qualifying heats and features immediately after make-up features are completed for the Supers, Mid-Mods and Pure Stocks.

Last Saturday’s shorted race program will be completed over the course of the next two scheduled race nights. The big Mods and Sixes are slated to make up their features on June 4.

Younger fans ages 3-8 are welcome to sign up for the ABC Raceway Kids’ Club at the track just prior to the races this Saturday. Those who have already signed up will receive their Kids’ Club member bags this week, which will include t-shirts, concession coupons, a checkered flag and more.

The Raceway’s live pre-race radio program, “Z-93 Race Night,” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, and the first of the three make-up features will start at 7. Adult tickets are just $11 each, and kids ages 12 and under are admitted free with a paid adult admission.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on anytime to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

ABC Raceway Opener Cut Short by Power Outage

May 24th, 2016

Ashland, WI — Just as the WISSOTA Midwest Mod B-main was taking to the ABC Raceway, a local power outage hit the facility. After nearly two hours of efforts by the local power provider, the Raceway was forced to cancel the balance of its opening-night race program, presented by Northern State Bank and Auto Value Auto Parts.

Beautiful clear skies and temps in the low 80s greeted a huge crowd for the 52nd season opener, and 94 cars filled the pit area for WISSOTA PolyDome Dirt Track Series racing action. All 11 heat races were completed in quick order before the Mid-Mod “B” was called to the track.

The Mid-Mod semi was completed in the fading sunlight, but the five opening-night features will now be rescheduled to be run over the next two race nights (divisions to be announced). The next scheduled show will be held on Saturday, May 28, and will be a salute to those who have served in our Nation’s military, presented by the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce. All active and retired Armed Services personnel with a military ID will be admitted free of charge.

Hot laps will be at 6:15 pm, with green-flag racing at 7. Adult tickets are $11, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

ABC Raceway Set to Open on Saturday

May 21st, 2016

Ashland, WI — With a much more favorable weather forecast in sight, the staff of the ABC Raceway will try again to kick off the 2016 stock car racing season opener on Saturday night with a program to be presented by the Northern State Bank and the Auto Value Auto Parts stores of Ashland and Ironwood.

A full 16 events are scheduled for the upcoming summer months at the award-winning three-eighths-mile red-clay oval just south of Ashland. WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds, Super Stocks, Midwest Mods and Pure Stocks, plus the track’s own Six-Cylinders, will run a complete program of qualifying heats and features each night.

The Raceway’s volunteer crews have worked hard over the past six weeks to get the facility ready for the season opener, and the track itself is in excellent condition, according to Raceway president Eric Erickson. And several area drivers have already had opportunities to “shake down” their cars at other tracks, so there should be outstanding action right from the drop of the first green flag.

Al Uotinen of Superior is set to return for his 37th season of racing and defend his sixth Modified division championship at Ashland, although fellow six-time champ Jeff Spacek of Phillips and Ashland’s own Steve Stuart, who tied for second in points last season, will lead a strong contingent of challengers in the track’s marquee division.

The Super Stock line-up at ABC is expected to be one of the most competitive in all of WISSOTA, with Tomahawk’s Jeff Klopstein Jr coming off of his first career track championship. Nick Oreskovich of Mason, who has already won two features in the young season, and 11-time ABC champ Scott Lawrence of Superior are among the many contenders who will vie for feature wins at the track this summer.

Paul Suzik of Ironwood, MI, worked hard to win his first-ever track title in ABC’s Mid-Mods last year, but repeating will be no easy feat. No less than six drivers were within 28 points of Suzik at season’s end, including Ryan Adamzak and Tyler Vernon, both of Ashland. And the division will only get more competitive, as several new drivers have crowded into an already talented field.

Hayward’s Dale Coddington collected his third ABC Raceway Six-Cylinder title in 2015, but Tiffany Hudack of Ashland, who earned the division crown in ’14, and Ashland’s Forrest Schultz, among others, will provide Coddington with increasingly tougher challenges.

Matt Deragon of Ashland has moved up into the Mid-Mod division for 2015, meaning his Pure Stock title is up for grabs. Heading up the list of possible contenders are former champ Tim Carbon of Highbridge, who finished second in points last summer, as well as Randy Graham of Trego and Brandle Pupp of Ashland.

Younger fans ages 3-8 are encouraged to come out to the track this Saturday and sign up for the ABC Raceway Kids’ Club. There are many fun activities slated for the kids to do all season long, as well as treats and surprises.

The Upper Midwest’s only live pre-race radio program, “Z-93 Race Night,” will air each racing night beginning this Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, and the first green flag of the season is scheduled to be thrown at 7. Adult tickets are just $11 each, and kids ages 12 and under are admitted free with a paid adult admission.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Rain, Cold Force ABC Raceway to Cancel Opener

May 16th, 2016

Ashland, WI– Because of a week of wet weather and cool temperatures – and much more of the same forecast for the weekend – the staff of the ABC Raceway announced Friday that its 2016 season opener slated for Saturday, May 14, has been cancelled.

On Saturday, May 21, the Raceway will again attempt to kick off its season with a full five-division stock car racing program, to be presented by the Northern State Bank and Auto Value Auto Parts. Hot laps will be at 6:15 pm, and the first green flag of the season is scheduled to fly at 7. WISSOTA Modifieds, Super Stocks, Midwest Mods and Pure Stocks, plus the track’s own Six-Cylinders, will be on hand.

Adult tickets will be just $11 each, and kids ages 12 and under will be admitted free with a paid adult admission.

The Upper Midwest’s only live pre-race radio program, “Z-93 Race Night,” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

ABC Raceway to Host Practice Night May 11

May 9th, 2016

Ashland, WI — The ABC Raceway will give local drivers the opportunity to get the “bugs” out of their race cars before kicking off the 2016 stock car racing season for real by offering a practice session on Wednesday evening, May 11.

The session will begin at 5 pm and run until no later than 8 pm at the award-winning three-eighths-mile red-clay oval located just south of Ashland. The cost to run some shake-down laps will be $30 per car; however, drivers and crew personnel will be admitted into the pit area free of charge.

The main grandstand will also be open, and fans are welcome to come and get their first glimpse of many of the area’s best racers run a few laps. There will be no admission price to watch from the main grandstand.

The 2016 season starts in earnest on Saturday night, May 14, with five racing divisions in action – WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds, Super Stocks, Midwest Modifieds and Pure Stocks, as well as the Raceway’s own Six-Cylinders. Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, and the first green flag of the night is scheduled to be thrown at 7. Adult tickets are just $11 each, and kids ages 12 and under admitted free with a paid adult admission.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. “Z-93 Race Night” will air each racing night beginning this Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

ABC Has Upcoming Media Day on May 4th

April 28th, 2016

Superior, WI–Once again it is time for the Stock Car racing season to begin at all five of the “Northern Tier” of WISSOTA Promoters Association tracks.

The Annual Media Day is coming up on Wednesday May 4th and will be held again at the Power House Bar & Grill in Proctor. This year the press conference is set to begin at noon. Representatives of the tracks will be on hand to give a brief overview of their upcoming seasons and to answer any questions.

Tracks include ABC Raceway, Ashland, AMSOIL Speedway, Superior, Grand Rapids Speedway Grand Rapids, Hibbing Raceway Hibbing and Proctor Speedway Proctor.

As always, feel free to bring along your sales people to network with the track representatives. Questions? Contact me Jerry O’Brien at (715) 392-4358 (Home) or (218) 391- 1649 (Cell) My e-mail address is: dirtblaster70@yahoo.com

Summer of ’16 at ABC Raceway to include Family Fun, Busy Slate

April 22nd, 2016

Ashland, WI — The staff of the award-winning ABC Raceway is ready to offer its fans and drivers a fun-filled, active summer of racing in 2016.

An ambitious 16-event schedule is planned for this summer, packed with a variety of promotions and events geared toward families, casual race fans and die-hard “motorheads.”

The facility, which will host its 52nd consecutive season of stock car racing action under the direction of the all-volunteer Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association at the three-eighths-mile red-clay oval located just south of Ashland, will once again operate under the sanction of the WISSOTA Promoters Association. Action will include five-division race events on Saturday nights from mid-May through the end of August before capping off the season with the Red Clay Classic invitational.

Those divisions will include WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds, and the entry-level Pure Stock division also becomes a WISSOTA division at ABC this season. The Raceway’s own Six-Cylinder division will be on hand as well.

For 2016 the Raceway will be offering a Kids’ Club for the younger race fans, offering a variety of special activities, along with gifts and prizes, for the youngsters.

Also this summer, the track will partner with a number of local businesses and organizations for a variety of promotions sprinkled throughout the schedule. Fans are encouraged to watch the track’s website, follow local media sources, and patronize the track’s many sponsors for details.

The season kicks off with the annual car show and swap meet on Saturday, April 30, from 10 am-2 pm at FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating, on US Highway 2 at the east end of Ashland. Fans will be able to get an up-close look at several of the race cars that will be competing at the ABC Raceway on Saturday nights this summer, and local classic car and hot rod owners are welcome to show off their prized vehicles on front of FastLane’s shop.

“WBSZ Race Night” will air live from 10 am-noon from the car show on 93.3 FM as well as online at www.wbszfm.com.

The May portion of the season is slated to begin on the 14th, and after night two of the season on the 21st, a special night honoring the men and women who have bravely served our country will take place on May 28, with free admission to members of the Armed Forces showing a military ID on that night.

The very popular “Meet the Drivers” night for the younger fans kicks off the month of June on the 4th, followed by the “Midwest Mod Madness” event – the first of five special nights celebrating the track’s weekly race divisions – on the 11th. A buy-one-get-one-free adult admission ticket deal will be offered on June 18, and the “Summer Sizzler” for the Sixes will close out the first half of the season on the 25th.

After a night off on July 2, the schedule really gets busy, starting with kids’ bike races on the 9th. The three-race, three-night, three-track Northland Super Stock Series will make its middle stop at Ashland on the 16th, and after the WISSOTA Race of Champions qualifiers on the 23rd the track will host its “Modified Mayhem” event on July 30.

The track will offer up a summer party to racers and fans on August 6, and on the 13th it will induct its Class of 2016 into the ABC Raceway Hall of Fame. The 13th annual “Pure Excitement 25″ for the Pure Stockers is set for the 20th, and the regular season ends with Championship Saturday Night on August 27.

The crown jewel of the racing invitational season in the Northland – the 41st Red Clay Classic – will be held on Friday and Saturday, September 31-October 1, and will feature upwards of 200 racers from four states and Canada competing for a total purse in excess of $85,000.

The ABC Raceway is proud to welcome Legendary Waters Resort & Casino of Red Cliff and Zar’s Banquet Hall of Ashland to its increasing list of generous supporters. Returning as season-long Raceway sponsors are the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce; the Ashland-Bayfield County Sportsman’s Club; Auto Value Auto Parts; the Bad River Lodge, Casino & Convention Center; Chicago Iron & Supplies; FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating; Heartland Communications; Lake Shore Cafe; Little Caesar’s Pizza; the NAPA Auto Parts Stores of Ashland & Washburn; Northern Clearing Inc; the Northern State Bank; Northern Wisconsin Fence; Northstar Beverage & Pepsi; Outlaw Graphics; the Safari Bar; and WIMI-FM.

During the regular season, a “hot laps” practice session begins each night at 6:15 pm, while the racing action starts at 7. For all regular-season race nights, adult tickets are just $11 each, and kids ages 12 and under are admitted free with a paid adult admission.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live each Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream on www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Northland Tracks to Host Super Stock Series in July

March 26th, 2016

Ashland, WI — When the FastLane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Series cranks up for its second edition in mid-July, the call will again be made to the drivers of one of WISSOTA’s most competitive classes to try their hand at a chance for some very generous payouts.

The Series, which enjoyed a successful and popular initial run last summer, is scheduled for three successive nights in July at three tracks close in proximity and well known for hosting strong weekly WISSOTA Super Stock fields.

The Series will start with a Friday night kick-off at the AmsOil Speedway in Superior on July 15, then continue on to the ABC Raceway in Ashland on Saturday, July 16, before concluding on Sunday night, July 17 at the Proctor (MN) Speedway.

On any given regular race night, each of these tracks consistently hosts stout fields of Super Stocks. But add to that a healthy number of visiting cream-of-the-crop drivers chasing the generous purses and prize money to be offered by the Series, and you have the makings of a premier race event crammed into three action-packed nights.

Forty-two drivers participated in the inaugural Northland Super Stock Series, of which 16 competed in all three races. The Series paid out $10,700 in points money, and the participating tracks added over $10,000 in purse, including winner’s payouts of $600 at Superior and Ashland and $500 at Proctor.

Unfortunately for 41 of the drivers, Curt Myers of Cameron was running about as strong as anyone in the land at the time and took home the lion’s share of the overall fund – and then some. Myers never lost a race that he had entered during the Series and collected over $4,500 in purse and points fund cash for his three nights of work. He continued on to a dream season that culminated in the 2015 WISSOTA Super Stock national championship.

Following Myers in the top-ten in the Series’ final standings were Andy Davey of Hibbing, MN; Scott Lawrence of Superior; Jeff Klopstein, Jr, of Tomahawk; Nick Oreskovich of Mason; Kevin Burdick of Proctor, MN; Shane Kisling of Park Falls; Willie Johnson, Jr, of Superior; Andy Grymala of Superior; and Cory Casari of Montreal.

For this year’s edition, the Series will again cash out to those drivers finishing in the top ten in final points, as well as paying a “sweep” bonus to any driver who, like Myers last year, can claim feature wins in all three Series events. A “participant non-qualifier” bonus will also be paid to any driver finishing outside of the top ten in points but competing in all three events. And finally, “hard charger” bonuses will be paid out to the drivers that gain the most positions in the running order from the beginning to the end of each of the three feature races, as well as the one driver who gains the most positions cumulatively during all three features.

In the 2015 Series, participant non-qualifier bonuses were handed out to Shawn McFadden, Jr, of Ashland; Dave Flynn of Superior; Patrick Beeksma of Ironwood, MI; DJ Keeler of Superior; Spencer Sorenson of Duluth, MN; and Don Muzzy of Ironwood, MI.

Hard charger awards last year went to Klopstein, Sorenson and Kisling at the individual events, and to Casari for his overall effort.

FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powder Coating of Ashland has once again signed on as the title sponsor for the event, while Lulich Implement of Mason has agreed to be a contributing sponsor. Dennis & Cathy Pattee will generously provide the Hard Charger bonuses again this year.

If one of this year’s events is canceled due to inclement weather, that night’s Series show will take place at the next regularly-scheduled night during which the Super Stocks race at that track.

Series organizer and Proctor Speedway president Dennis McCauley stated recently that he was thrilled with the outstanding support of the Series shown by drivers, fans and sponsors, and he feels that the 2016 version could be even more exciting and have more to offer for the drivers and fans. He also hinted that more sponsors are coming on board for the 2016 Series and will be announced soon.

The AmsOil Speedway is situated on Tower Avenue just south of downtown Superior, at the Head of the Lakes Fairgrounds. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland off State Highway 13 on Butterworth Road. The Proctor Speedway is located within the South St Louis County Fairgrounds on North Boundary Avenue in Proctor.

AmsOil, Proctor Speedways Honor Their Best from 2015

February 8th, 2016

Superior, WI — The combined efforts of the staffs of the AmsOil Speedway in Superior and Proctor (MN) Speedway resulted in an enjoyable 2015 racing season awards banquet at the Barker’s Island Inn in Superior on January 30.

After an excellent buffet-style dinner, Proctor Speedway co-announcer Nick Gima acted as emcee for the event. AmsOil Speedway promoter Joe Stariha kicked things off with an overview of the 2015 racing season there, expressing appreciation to the track’s work staff and sponsors for a successful campaign.

Stariha also offered a look ahead at plans for 2016 at Superior, which will include a two-day, $10,000-to-win WISSOTA Modified special on July 2-3, as well as visits by the WISSOTA OneMain Financial Late Model Challenge Series and the Advantage RV Mod Series. He also announced that the track’s Pure Stocks would run under WISSOTA sanctioning during the upcoming summer.

Proctor Speedway president Dennis McCauley also stepped up to the podium to extend thanks to his track’s staff for a job well done and to thank that race facility’s sponsors as well. McCauley went on to announce that the track will attempt to host some new events in 2016, including a mid-season WISSOTA Late Model special, a “Student Night” to lure area high school and college students to the Speedway, and a visit by the ABC Raceway Six-Cylinders. A second running of the popular Northland Super Stock Series, in cooperation with AmsOil Speedway, Hibbing (MN) Raceway and ABC Raceway in Ashland, is planned as well.

McCauley then presented jackets to Stariha, Jerry “Crash” Carlson, Lisa Walkowiak, Jessica Bellefeuille and Al Rapp, in recognition for their efforts and accomplishments during their many years serving in various capacities on the Board of the Lakehead Racing Association, which operates the Proctor Speedway.

As with AmsOil, Proctor will also run its Pure Stocks, as well as its Hornets, under the WISSOTA banner in 2016.

The drivers finishing in the top five in final points in the WISSOTA-sanctioned weekly divisions at each track were then presented with trophies. Also, the top ten in final points in the Pure Stock class at both tracks, and the top ten in Proctor’s Hornets class, were also recognized with trophies and plaques. Finally, all division champions received jackets commemorating their accomplishments.

At Superior, Darrell Nelson of Hermantown, MN, won his fifth career Late Model track championship in 2015, leading the division with five heat wins and five feature wins, including his first-ever A-main win in a Late Model Challenge Series event. The title was his 11th overall at the track.

Following Nelson in the final Late Model standings at AmsOil Speedway were Aaron Lillo of Proctor, Duluth’s Tim McMann, Harry Hanson of Eveleth, MN, and Terry Lillo of Duluth.

The 2015 Proctor Speedway WISSOTA Late Model champ was Hanson, for the fourth time in the past eight seasons there. Winning the title by just four points, Hanson had three heat wins and a pair of feature checkereds during the abbreviated season there.

The remainder of the top five in Proctor’s Late Model standings included McMann, Nelson, Cory Jorgenson of Hermantown, and Terry Lillo.

Receiving his sixth WISSOTA Modified track championship trophy from AmsOil Speedway was Superior’s own Al Uotinen. The track’s all-time leader in feature laps completed collected his seventh overall title at his home track, but his first since 2000, with the help of some consistently high finishes and his 40th career feature win.

Just behind Uotinen in AmsOil’s Mod standings were Kelly Estey of Kelly Lake, MN; Nelson, Duluth’s Jody Bellefeuille, and Neil Balduc of Bessemer, MI.

Over at Proctor, Deven Van House of Silver Bay, MN, was crowned WISSOTA “big Mod” track champion for the second straight season. Along with his three heat wins and lone feature victory, Van House scored a top-five finish at the season-ending Silver 1000. He claimed the title by just one point.

Following Van House in the Mod points at Proctor were Bellefeuille, Nelson, Brian Mikkonen of Iron River, and Balduc.

Superior’s Scott Lawrence continued his championship ways in the Twin Ports by capturing the WISSOTA Super Stock titles at both tracks in 2015. At AmsOil Speedway he led the division with eight heat wins, and his two main-event victories brings his career total there to 77, matching his car number, as he collected his third title in the Supers and 12th overall in Superior.

At Proctor Lawrence was nearly as dominant, earning six heat wins in seven shows there and two feature firsts, on his way to his fifth straight track title there.

Completing the top five in Super Stock points at AmsOil Speedway were Shane Kisling of Park Falls, Superior’s Dave Flynn, Nick Oreskovich of Mason, and Keith Kern of Superior.

The remainder of the top five in Proctor’s Super Stocks included Shawn McFadden Jr of Ashland, Kevin Salin of Iron, MN; Proctor’s Kevin Burdick, and Willie Johnsen Jr of Superior.

Hibbing, MN’s Tyler Kintner made the transition from Super Stocks to WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds pay off in 2015 with his first-ever track championship at Superior. The second-generation driver collected five heat wins and a feature victory, and he also topped the division at Grand Rapids (MN) Speedway.

Trailing Kintner in the Mid-Mods at Superior were Skeeter Estey of Kelly Lake, MN; Dan Kingsley of Superior, Iron River’s Tyler Luger, and Van House.

Van House pulled off another impressive double-championship trophy haul, as for the second straight season he collected titles in both the “big Mods’ and Mid-Mods at Proctor. In the Midwest Mods he led the division with four heat wins, won the track’s Race of Champions qualifier, and finished with eight top-ten runs in nine features entered in 2015.

Finishing 2-5 in Proctor’s Mid-Mods were Kingsley, Luger, Jake Gondik of Foxboro, and JR Anderson of Superior.

In taking his first-ever Pure Stock championship at AmsOil, Ryan Savoy of Superior won the first three features of his young career and topped the division with five heat wins.

Shaina Rapp of Saginaw, MN, claimed second in AmsOil’s Pure Stock points, ahead of Foxboro’s Ryan Madsen, Alex Smith of Solon Springs, and Superior’s Chad Carlson. Sixth through tenth were Andy Poll of Two Harbors, MN; Cloquet, MN’s Jon Hammitt, Tim Carlson and Jason Simonson, both of Superior, and Annika Hammitt of Cloquet.

Josh Loucks of Carlton, MN, was once again dominant in capturing his third Proctor Pure Stock title in eight seasons, with four feature wins, three runner-up efforts and one third-place performance in nine shows run.

Behind Loucks in the top five were Mike Sirois of Hermantown, MN; Rapp, Poll, and Ashland’s Matt Deragon. The second five consisted of Alborn, MN’s Eric Pederson, Jon Hammitt, Kevin Getchell of Cloquet, Duluth’s Mark Korte, and Annika Hammitt.

Duluth’s Craig Lofdahl made history in 2015 as the first-ever Hornet points champion at Proctor Speedway. His impressive season included wins in five of the nine heat races run and four of the track’s nine features.

Drivers finishing second through fifth in the Hornets were Duluth’s Kyle LeDoux, Ryan Lind of Cloquet, Wrenshall, MN’s Richard Loucks, and David Beckwith of Duluth. In sixth through tenth were Jordan Carlson and Sammie Pierson, both of Duluth; Derek Ament of Mahtowa, MN; Gavin Rowland of Oglivie, MN; and Kyle House of Cloquet.

The top qualifying rookie drivers at each track were honored as well. Those receiving this recognition at AmsOil Speedway included Duluth’s Spencer Sorenson in the Super Stocks, Mike Jacques of Thunder Bay, ON, in the Mid-Mods, and Smith in the Pure Stocks.

Proctor’s top rookies were Late Model driver Josh Johnson of Superior, Sorenson in the Supers, and Poll in the Pure Stocks.

Proctor Speedway also presented plaques of achievement for its Hard Chargers in each division, including Nelson (Late Models and Mods), Burdick (Supers), Kingsley (Mid-Mods), Andrew Hanson of Iron River (Pures), and LeDoux (Hornets).

Recognized as Sportsmen of the Year by AmsOil Speedway in 2015 were McMann (Late Models), Balduc (Mods), Oreskovich (Supers), Scott Herrick of Proctor (Mid-Mods), and Poll (Pures).

Receiving Sportsman of the Year honors from Proctor Speedway were Robbie Cooper of South Range (Late Models), Jeff Broking of Grand Rapids, MN (Mods), Sorenson (Supers), Gondik (Mid-Mods), the Hammitt family (Pures), and Richard Loucks (Hornets).

Each track also recognized individuals who have given selflessly to the tracks and to area short-track stock car racing in general with prestigious special awards. Stariha proudly presented the AmsOil Speedway’s Russ Laursen Award to Dennis Pattee, while McCauley honored Jon Schwartzkopf with the Proctor Speedway President’s Award.

A huge treasure trove of prizes were given away during the post-awards raffle. The list of generous contributors to the raffle included Accurate Auto, Advantage Automotive, AmsOil, Applebee’s of Cloquet, Auto Zone, Barker’s Island Inn, Dirt Race Central, FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating, Five Star Automotive, Holiday Station Store of Proctor, Interstate Batteries, Jackpot Junction Hotel & Casino, Kom-On-Inn, McDonald’s on Tower Avenue in Superior, Mike’s Place, Minnesota Wilderness, the O’Reilly Auto Parts stores of Duluth and Superior, Pike Lake Holiday, Prairie’s Edge Resort & Casino, Rivord Auto Repair, Southgate Pizza, Tires Plus of Superior, Twin Ports Entertainment, and Village Lanes.

Track photographer Tom Krob presented a slide-show tribute to the drivers and tracks, and many in attendance stayed afterwards to enjoy music played by Jason Smetke and Shauna Wood and share stories from the season.

Nick Gima
announcer / publicist / historian
ABC Raceway
Ashland, WI
“home of the Red Clay Classic”

ABC Raceway Caps Off Successful 2015 Season with Banquet

January 25th, 2016

Ashland, WI — The ABC Raceway closed out its 2015 stock car racing season with a fun-filled banquet at the AmericInn in Ashland on Saturday evening.

After a delicious buffet-style meal catered by Ashland’s Breakwater Restaurant, a crowd of over 200 were welcomed by emcee Nick Gima and listened as Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association president Eric Erickson congratulated the track champions, thanked the Raceway’s sponsors, applauded the efforts of the track’s volunteer work crew and Board of Directors, and presented a brief review of season.

In his remarks, Erickson was proud to point out that the venerable three-eighths-mile red clay oval located south of Ashland was the regular Saturday-night venue for 21 rookie drivers – a fact that, as Erickson stated, bodes well for the future of the sport in the area. Erickson also noted that the Raceway paid out nearly $250,000 in purses to its competitors during 2015, which is very impressive considering that the season was shortened significantly due to difficult track conditions caused by a wet Spring and late thaw.

Erickson also impressed the gathering by stating that the paid attendance for the 40th Red Clay Classic end-of-season invitational in early October exceeded 4,850, making for one of the largest crowds in the event’s long history.

The top ten in final points in each of the Raceway’s five regular weekly divisions were presented with trophies, with the divisional champions also receiving jackets commemorating their achievements. In addition, the top rookies in each class were recognized, and special awards and points fund checks were also presented.

Al Uotinen of Superior earned his sixth WISSOTA Modified championship by being a model of consistency throughout the 2015 season. Despite not winning a feature here, Uotinen still finished in the top-five in nine of the ten regular-season “big Mod” features run, with three of those resulting in second-place efforts.

Finishing tied for second to Uotinen in the Modified standings were two multi-time ABC champs – Steve Stuart of Ashland and Jeff Spacek of Phillips. Brian Mikkonen of Iron River, who collected his first career feature win since moving up to the class full-time in 2013, finished fourth, while Ashland’s Kevin Eder landed fifth.

The remainder of the top ten included Scott Hudack of Ashland, Medford’s Paul Niznik, Pat Cook of Washburn, Rick Rivord of Superior, and Ashland’s Dustin Hudack.

In his rookie season in the division, Jeff Klopstein Jr of Tomahawk surprised many by ending Scott Lawrence’s reign at the top of the WISSOTA Super Stock standings here. Klopstein, who moved up from the WISSOTA Midwest Modified ranks, proved to be a perfect example of perseverance on a shoestring budget, finishing the season with three heat wins and nine top-ten finishes in ten shows, including his first-ever feature win in a Super Stock on August 22.

Finishing only one point behind Klopstein in the standings was Shane Kisling, the 2015 Red Clay Classic champ who has recently moved to Park Falls. Lawrence, of Superior, finished third after 11 straight seasons as the division’s champ in Ashland, while Nick Oreskovich of Mason and Randy Spacek of Phillips completed the top five.

Shawn McFadden Jr of Ashland finished sixth in Super Stock points, while Superior’s Andy Grymala made a successful return to full-time racing in Ashland with a seventh-place points effort. Divisional rookies and
cousins Cole and Terran Spacek of Phillips, and another rookie to the class, four-time Six-Cylinder champ Patrick Beeksma of Ironwood, MI, completed the top ten.

Ironwood, MI’s Paul Suzik claimed his first career points title in the WISSOTA Midwest Mods in 2015, and, like Uotinen, relied on consistency rather than feature wins to earn the crown. Suzik, in only his fourth season of racing, scored three heat wins over the final three weeks of the regular season, and four of his six top-five feature finishes were runner-up performances. He also impressed those on hand with his well-prepared acceptance speech.

Suzik’s final points margin over runner-up Ryan Adamzak of Ashland was just ten points; Adamzak also claimed second-place money at last October’s Red Clay Classic. Eder, who completed his first full-time season in the Mid-Mods, grabbed three feature wins and finished third in the standings, followed by Ashland drivers Tyler Vernon and Tanner Hicks, who tied for fourth.

Sixth in the standings was 2011 Mid-Mod champ George Dalbeck of Ironwood, MI, followed by Niznik’s second seventh-place effort at ABC of 2015. Eighth in points was Rob Weber of Ashland, while the division’s 2010
champ Mickey Nosser of Phillips and Marenisco, MI’s Duane Dunbar completed the second five.

Dale Coddington of Hayward took home his third ABC Raceway Six-Cylinder championship trophy on Saturday night, after a hard-fought, season-long battle for the title. Coddington, who also won in 2009 and ’13, tallied four heat wins and three feature victories to win the division by just three points.

Pressuring Coddington throughout the season was 2014 Sixes champ Tiffany Hudack of Ashland, who scored five heat wins and a pair of feature checkered flags en route to her third straight top-three points finish in the division. Tiffany’s brother Tyler Hudack, also of Ashland, led the division with seven heat wins to help him to a third-place points effort, while Forrest Schultz of Ashland scored the first two feature wins of his career in 2015 and claimed fourth, just ahead of Colton Vernon of Washburn.

In the second five in Six-Cylinder points were Mark “Bubba” Anderson of Trego, DeJay Mihalek of Ashland, Iron River pilots Ken Tyykila and Jonathan Popp, and Ashland’s Adam Traaholt.

The only driver to successfully defend his crown, Ashland’s Matt Deragon scored his third Pure Stock points championship in the past four seasons in nearly as dominant a fashion as in 2014. Deragon clinched the title by winning his division-best fifth heat win on the final night of the season, and his class-best three feature victories in 2015 puts him at 14 for his career – one shy of the Raceway’s all-time record for Pure Stock A-main wins.

Two-time divisional champ Tim Carbon of Highbridge finished runner-up to Deragon in the final standings, while Randy Graham of Trego used back-to-back runner-up feature finished at the end of the season to claim third. The team effort led by 2007 ABC Pure Stock champ Glenn Dammer of Duluth, MN, took fourth, and fifth went to Brandle Pupp of Ashland used five top-five feature finishes over the final six weeks to finish fifth.

Sixth through tenth included Randy Connor of Hayward, Andrew Hanson of Iron River, Justin Weinberger of Park Falls, the Manitowish Waters team effort of Bob Skrobot and Steve Pohl, and the team of Charles Yahn of Mellen and Andy Compton of Ashland.

Tyler Vernon was presented with the track’s Most Improved Driver honor for his efforts in his Mid-Mod, while Dustin Hudack received the coveted Sportsman of the Year award. Four of the five divisions saw their top rookies honored, including Klopstein (Supers), Clay Passuello of Ironwood, MI (Mid-Mods), Anderson (Sixes), and Weinberger (Pure Stocks); there were no qualifying rookies in the Modifieds.

Erickson presented the annual President’s Award to Mike Eder, a long-time Raceway Board member and local business owner, for his outstanding “behind-the-scenes” efforts and many years of dedication to the ABC Raceway and to the sport of racing in general.

Following a giveaway of a slew of door prizes, those in attendance enjoyed fellowship as “Night Screamer” provided live music.

The ABC Raceway 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, www.abcraceway.com.

Mars Wins Record Sixth Red Clay Classic, Nelson, Kisling, Southworth also winners

October 6th, 2015

Ashland, WI- Jimmy Mars of Menomonie returned to the ABC Raceway for the first time since 2004 and picked up where he left off, running away to his fifth Red Clay Classic WISSOTA Late Model feature win and sixth overall on Saturday night.

The 40th annual running of the Northland’s traditional season-ending stock car race event, presented by FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating of Ashland and Tim’s Automotive Machine of Bloomer, also saw Darrell Nelson of Hermantown, MN, win for the second time in the WISSOTA Modifieds, Sarona’s Shane Kisling earn his second event win in theWISSOTA Super Stocks, and Grant Southworth of Bloomer claim victory for the first time in the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds.

Saturday’s portion of the PolyDome Dirt Track Series race program clicked off in rapid fashion, helped by a fast-paced Late Model 50-lap finale that was slowed by only three minor caution stoppages. Mars was the class of the field almost from the get-go, moving past polestarter Harry Hanson into second place right off the first turn and setting sail for early leader Chad Mahder.

Within just six laps Mahder and Mars had pulled away from the balance of the field, and on lap 6 Mars made a move for the lead, but it was negated when Darrell Nelson and North Dakota visitor Dustin Strand tangled, sending Nelson for a wild ride through the Victory Lane grass as Strand coasted to a stop with mechanical issues.

Three laps after the restart Mars used an inside move to get by Mahder for the race-winning pass, and within four laps he established a lead of over three seconds – basically the length of a straightaway. Mahder, meanwhile, fended off challenges from Hanson and Pat Doar for second.

Mars caught up to slower traffic by lap 17, and on lap 19 two of those backmarkers – Dave Esse and Dave Fieber – made contact just as the leader was about to pass them. Mars barely avoided the spinning Esse, but the ensuing restart put the field back on his rear bumper.

On that restart Hanson stole second when Mahder bobbled through the first turn, and three laps later Doar worked his way around Mahder into third. On lap 27 Doar switched to the bottom lane to take second away from Hanson, whose car began a slow fade through the field from that point on.

Mars was into slower traffic again by lap 28 but weaved his way through with relative ease. His lead was over four full seconds on Doar when Adam Hensel’s machine stalled on the front chute for the final race stoppage on lap 38.

From there on Mars drove off to the $4,000 feature win – his sixth overall at the Classic and fifth in the premier division, of which both counts are event records. Doar, who had started 12th on the 24-car grid, held firmly to second but could not gain any ground on Mars even when the leader caught up to the tail of the field again with three laps to go. Mahder, who collected the fast-time bonus with an early lap of 16.314 seconds, maintained third ahead of 2006 RCC champ John Kaanta and 13th-starting Darrell Nelson.

Defending RCC winner Jake Redetzke was steady en route to a sixth-place showing, followed by an impressive Aaron Lillo, 2008 RCC winner Hanson, Marshall Fegers and another first-time visitor from North Dakota, Brad Seng.

Nelson kicked off what turned out to be a very successful race weekend for him by scoring a hard-fought $3,000 win in the 35-lap Modified feature. Nelson, who started on row 2 of the 24-car grid, waited for front-row starters Matt Leer and Joey Jensen to hash out who would set the initial pace; once the four-time Classic champ Jensen cleared the
polestarter for the lead, Nelson employed in inside move on lap 3 to claim second from Leer.

A lap later Nelson made a run by Jensen, and within a couple more circuits Nelson had built a lead of over a second. At a distance behind Jensen, Leer led a tightly-packed bunch battling for third.

Nelson clearly had things well in hand – his lead was five-and-a-quarter seconds on lap 14 – when Jody Bellefeuille looped his ride to bring about the first yellow-flag slowdown of the run. A lap after the restart, ninth-starting Jake Hartung used a thread-the-needle move between Jensen and Leer to take second, and then the field was slowed again
for Kevin Eder’s spin on lap 17.

Defending race winner Jesse Glenz’s ride slowed with issues on the restart to again stop the pace, but just as the yellow light blinked on Hartung and Leer tangled, damaging Leer’s car and ending his night. Jensen made a move on Hartung to take second on the re-do, but Hartung returned the favor a lap later.

On lap 20 Nick Musel spun to cause a reset of the field, and Hartung took advantage of the opportunity, trying an outside run on Nelson. Bill Byholm’s spin on lap 21 delayed Hartung’s advance, but he tried again after the green flag reappeared, and on lap 22 he gained the advantage. As the lead pair thrilled the crowd with a fierce battle, Paul Niznik made an inside move stick to take third away from Jensen, bringing 12th-starting Jeff Tardy along to fourth.

On lap 25 Nelson drove back by Hartung to retake the lead, just before a Scott Duval spin stopped the race for the final time. Nelson maintained his grip on the lead from there, eventually pulling to a 2.3-second cushion over Hartung at the checkers. Niznik capped off a nice weekend with a third-place effort, followed by Tardy, while 18th-starting Rick Rivord used a couple of late-lap passes to earn fifth.

Track champion Al Uotinen, who had to win a B-feature to make the show and started 21st, came home sixth, ahead of 20th-starting Steve Stuart, 2007 RCC champ Bellefeuille, Jensen, and Jay Richardson. Leer claimed the quick-lap bonus with a 17.460-second circuit.

Kisling started outside on the front row of the 26-car field and led all 30 laps of the Super Stock main event to collect his second career Red Clay Classic crown, and by also clocking the fastest lap time in the run (17.523 seconds) he pocketed $2,150 for his efforts. The 2011 event winner swept around polestarter Cory Casari and used the upper groove of the three-eighths-mile red-clay oval to maintain his momentum.

After a lap 1 stoppage for debris, defending race winner Kevin Burdick swept around Casari to take second behind Kisling, and Curt Myers, another past RCC champ who is within sight of his second WISSOTA National Championship, followed the same path around Casari to third on lap 3. On the next go-around Myers switched lanes to slip by Burdick for second, but a caution stop for Darrel Hazelton’s stalled car wiped out the move and kicked off a brief series of misadventures that slowed the pace of the race.

Casari’s loose car triggered a five-car mess after the restart, and then, after Myers got by Burdick for second on lap 5, Brad Johnson spun. Eric Olson then challenged Burdick for third, but on lap 7 Scott Lawrence snuck past both of them for the spot, only to have that move negated when the caution flag flew for Andy Grymala’s dropped driveshaft. Finally, on the ensuing restart, Lawrence made heavy contact with Myers, causing significant damage to the 14-time track champion’s car and ending his strong bid.

From that point on, however, Kisling paced the field for 23 uninterrupted laps, extending his lead to nearly a full second over the battle for second between Myers and Olson. Once Kisling began dealing with slower traffic with eight laps remaining, however, Myers cut into that lead. With two to go Myers was on Kisling’s rear bumper, and on a couple of occasions he took a look to the outside in an effort to pass, but Kisling withstood the threats for a half-second margin of victory. Olson, the 2010 RCC champ, was close behind in third, while Burdick followed in fourth and newly-crowned ABC track champion Jeff Klopstein came home fifth after starting 13th.

Andy Davey led the second five, followed by 16th-starting Ben Hillman, three-time RCC winner Rich Bishop, 22nd-starting Steve Thomas and Super Stock rookie Patrick Beeksma.

Southworth was the only feature winner on the night to start from the pole in laying claim to the 25-lap Midwest Mod A-main – his first-ever win at ABC – and the $1,000 first-place check. Like Kisling, Southworth led every lap as he beat Ryan Adamzak out of the first turn and paced a tight pack of cars early before pulling away to a 1.1-second advantage.

The first of just two caution flags flew on lap 7, for track champion Paul Suzik’s spin, and on the restart fourth-place Tyler Luger drove too hard into the first turn, tagged Adamzak and spun, causing a slew of cars behind them to collect into a huge logjam. Fortunately the vast majority of those involved were able to continue, and from that point on the race clicked off without interruption.

On lap 9 Mack Estey moved by Mickey Nosser to claim fourth as Southworth extended his lead again on Adamzak and Niznik. Nosser returned the favor on Estey three laps later, and as the field settled into a nice, easy pace Southworth continued to build up some breathing room, extending his advantage to over a second-and-a-half in the waning laps.

Southworth cruised to a surprisingly easy win over Adamzak, who set the fast lap of the race early on at 17.678 seconds. Nosser made a late-race pass of Niznik to claim third, and Estey completed the top five. Rob Weber came home sixth, followed by Nick Koehler, defending race winner Michael Truscott, who started 18th, Kent Baxter and Eder, who started 25th of the 26 cars in the field.

Mod and Mid-Mod racer Eder spent much of his weekend collecting over $1,600 from drivers, fans and local businesses to once again create a “Bridesmaid’s Challenge” fund, from which money was split between the second-place finishers in each of the features if they agreed to don a formal gown during their post-race interviews in Victory Lane. Hartung, Myers and Adamzak eagerly participated and shared the cash, but Doar passed on the offer.

Prior to Saturday’s race program the ABC Raceway paid tribute to Greenland, MI, racer Ken Truscott, who had announced his retirement from racing earlier this fall. Truscott, a popular racer who was consistently competitive as well as an exemplary sportsman, had raced at the Ashland track for over 25 seasons and earned six feature wins here.

A total of 195 entries representing five states and Canada were on hand, including 36 Late Models, 42 Modifieds, 50 Super Stocks and an event-record 67 Mid-Mods. The starting line-ups of all four feature races were introduced out-of-car to the huge, hearty crowd on hand braving brisk temperatures and circled the Raceway in a four-wide salute with fireworks exploding overhead.

Despite the huge field, both programs on the weekend clicked off in efficient fashion, thanks in large part to the perfectly-prepared racing surface. Friday’s 20 heat races took just shy of three hours to complete, while Saturday’s 11 semi-features and four big main events were completed in just over five-and-a-half hours.

The Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association wishes to thank the many individuals and businesses who contributed so much in terms of man-hours, materials and resources to make the 40th Red Clay Classic and the 2015 season a huge success. The ABC Raceway’s annual awards banquet will be held in January 2016; more information will be made available on the Raceway’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Red Clay Classic Offers Opportunities for Racers to Cash In, Fans to Have Fun

September 21st, 2015

Ashland, WI — The 40th annual Red Clay Classic is coming up soon, and the ABC Raceway has announced several incentive programs to tempt the drivers of WISSOTA to come to northern Wisconsin for this prestigious event.

The Northland’s traditional season-ending stock car racing special, to be presented by FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating of Ashland and Tim’s Automotive Machine of Bloomer, will feature WISSOTA-sanctioned Midwest Modifieds, Super Stocks, Modifieds, and – in their only visit of the season – Late Models for heat-race action on Friday, October 2, before finishing up with last-chance qualifying races and four huge A-features on Saturday, October 3.

Of the various incentive programs, first and foremost, of course, is a generous purse. The Raceway has increased the overall payout to an estimated $86,000 – the highest purse ever offered for the Classic. And while the impressive feature winners’ shares have not changed from recent years – $4,000 for the Late Model feature winner, $3,000 for the Modified champ, $2,000 for the winner of Super Stock main event, and $1,000 for the Mid-Mod winner – the roughly $6,000 increase from last year’s Classic offering has been spread out over most of the other finishing positions for
each of the divisions’ A-main and qualifying events.

That will give more drivers a chance to make more prize money – and that could attract more drivers for the weekend.

“The Raceway’s Board of Directors felt that we had not increased the purse in recent years, so this was due,” stated ABC Raceway president Eric Erickson recently. “The majority of the (purse) increase will be paid from fifth place on back in the features.

“We think that it’s good for all the feature starters to receive a nice check, as well as the top finishers.”

another benefit will be offered in the form of a fast-lap bonus, to be offered by Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland. The drivers that post the fastest laps in each of the four features, based on the track’s electronic scoring and timing system, will each receive an extra $150.

There will be other opportunities for drivers to gain from coming to the Red Clay Classic this year. The track will present a $125 “long-haul” bonus to the driver in each of the four classes who travels the furthest to compete at the Classic, and every 2015 WISSOTA track points champion who comes to compete in the division they won their title in will have their draw fee waived by the track.

Also, in an effort to attract drivers who haven’t attempted to run at the Red Clay Classic in the past five years, the ABC Raceway will offer to pay the draw fee for the first five drivers in each class who have not come to compete at the Classic since the 2010 edition or earlier. In order to qualify for this bonus, drivers need to pre-commit to racing at this year’s Classic by contacting Erickson at (715) 209-2102.

“We’d love to see some drivers return to this event that haven’t been here for a few years, or have never been here,” stated Erickson recently. “That’s why we added this bonus.”

To continue a fun twist started at last year’s Classic, the second-place finishers in each of the four features will be offered a “Bridesmaid’s Challenge” bonus if they are willing to wear a bridesmaid’s dress for their Victory Lane interview immediately following their race.

both the fans and the drivers took to this incentive enthusiastically last year.

“It’s all about having fun,” Erickson explained. “We encourage our fans to have fun at this event. Just like with the fans who come to the Red Clay Classic dressed up in costumes – we always hear great positive comments from fans who are new to our track and to the Classic and see the fun that folks are having.

“The Eric Olson race fans from Ladysmith started that whole deal (dressing in costumes for the Classic), and it has been really well received, and the number of fans who participate in that has grown each year. We hope a lot more folks get into the spirit of the event in that way.”

The Raceway will offer live music at the track after the Friday night portion of the program, and the annual Red Clay Classic scramble golf tournament is tentatively set for Saturday morning at 9:30 at the Chequamegon Bay Golf Club. Also, merchants in the Historic Downtown Ashland shopping district will be offering many specials throughout the weekend.

The Raceway will open its pit gates at 1 pm on Friday, and the grandstand gates will open at 3:30. Hot laps are scheduled for 5:30, followed by heat race action at 7 pm. The draw cut-off time on Friday will be 6 pm sharp.

On Saturday the pit gates will open at noon, and the grandstands will open at 2:30 pm. Last-chance qualifying will begin at 5 pm, and the program will conclude with the four big main events.

For grandstand seating, adult admission is $20 for Friday’s show and $25 for Saturday’s races, but fans can purchase a two-day pass for just $40. Younger fans ages 6-12 will be charged $12 each day, or $20 for a two-day pass. Kids ages 5 and under are admitted free both days when accompanied by a paying adult.

A limited number of reserved seats are still available, priced at $50 for adults and $30 for fans ages 6-12, and include a two-day pass.

Pit passes are available for $30 for Friday and $35 on Saturday, while two-day pit passes are just $60. Several pit spots are still available as well and can be reserved in advance.

there are still a few camping sites available on the Raceway grounds, but they are going fast at just $30 for the weekend. There is also free camping available on the private property adjacent to the east of the track on a first-come, first-served basis.

For information on reserved seating and camping, please contact Mary at (715) 682-2672. For information on reserved pit spots, please call Cheryl at (715) 746-2390 or e-mail to tickets@abcraceway.com.

For motel information, please contact the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce at (715) 682-2500.

“Z-93 Race Night” will air live from the track on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, starting at 3 pm Central on both Friday and Saturday with up-to-date raceday and weather information

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com, for more information year-’round.

Uotinen, Klopstein, Suzik, Coddington, Deragon Capture 2015 ABC Raceway Titles

September 1st, 2015

Ashland, WI, – The ABC Raceway wound up its 2015 stock car racing regular season on Saturday night with five drivers grabbing feature wins and five others earning track championships.

“Championship Saturday Night,” presented by Pepsi, North Star Beverage of Hurley, and WIMI-FM of Ironwood, MI, saw 99 entries for the regular-season-ending PolyDome Dirt Track Series program, during which all five division titles were still up for grabs before the night’s action started, and three of the five champs still hadn’t been pinned down until the features were run.

When all had been settled, Al Uotinen of Superior laid claim to his sixth ABC Raceway championship in the WISSOTA Modifieds, Tomahawk’s Jeff Klopstein gained the WISSOTA Super Stock crown, Paul Suzik of Ironwood, MI, was named WISSOTA Midwest Modified champ, Hayward’s Dale Coddington held on for Six-Cylinder honors, and Matt Deragon of Ashland repeated as Pure Stock champ.

Uotinen only needed to start the 20-lap ‘big Mod” headliner in order to nail down his sixth track championship here, but the story of the race was the strong run by outside front-row starter Steve Lavasseur of River Falls. Lavasseur battled with polesitter Jared Loos for a little over a lap before establishing himself as the man to beat, while Bill Byholm, Paul Niznik and Jeff Spacek lurked just behind. Lavasseur found the upper groove to his liking and stormed away to a full-second lead within the first four laps, while Byholm used an inside move to take second from Loos. On lap 7 Stuart made a daring thread-the-needle move to swipe third from Loos and Spacek, but Loos charged back to try to retake the spot a lap later.

Just after the halfway point Byholm began to close the gap on the leader, and on lap 13 he was showing the nose of his car just alongside Lavasseur’s. But on lap 14 Byholm got too close, and the resulting contact sent Lavasseur’s car airborne for just a moment and then spinning in turn 4 to bring about the race’s only caution stop. Lavasseur’s car was none the worse for wear, however, and he shrugged off a brief challenge by Stuart for the lead on the ensuing restart before pulling away to his first feature win here since June 2012. Stuart held on to win the dogfight for second over Loos, while Uotinen charged from his fourth-row start to take fourth and claim the title, ahead of Kevin Eder.

Klopstein followed up his first career Super Stock feature win here last week with his first-ever track championship, in this his first season in the division. The race was filled with drama for the champ, as a stout run by Sarona’s Shane Kisling for the win left Klopstein little room for error. Kisling made up for a frustrating run in Superior the night before by charging to the front with a purpose in the 20-lap A-main. Cory Casari played a major role in the entire race, starting with his strong run to the inside on polestarter Scott Lawrence to challenge for the lead early, after which Nick Oreskovich surprised both with a dive to the bottom to pass them for first on lap 2.

The fourth-row-starting Kisling was already in third by lap 5 and dove low to take second from Lawrence on lap 6; with Klopstein running eighth on that lap the move essentially put Kisling and Klopstein in a tie for the points lead at that moment. But Klopstein moved by Marcus Dunbar for sixth a couple circuits later, before the race’s lone caution flag was thrown for Brady Mesko-Jokinen’s spin at mid-race.

Kisling worked an outside move to take the lead from Oreskovich for good a lap after the restart, giving him the points lead for just a moment, but the next time around Klopstein snuck by Casari for fifth, moving him back to the top of the standings. From there Kisling ran away to his second win of the year here by a two-second cushion, and Klopstein did all he could to keep Casari from taking fifth away from him and earned the title by one point. A strong late charge by Eder in Greg Kuklinski’s racer was good for second-place money, while Oreskovich stayed just in front of Lawrence for third.

Entering the night, the standings difference from first to second was closest in the Mid-Mods, where Suzik held a five-point edge on Ryan Adamzak. Suzik’s heat win, combined with Adamzak’s third-place run in his heat, gave Suzik just a little more breathing room heading for their feature.

Duane Dunbar led the early laps of the 20-lap nightcap, just ahead of a very determined Tad Bretting and George Dalbeck. After Mark Kangas’ spin collected several cars for the race’s first yellow-flag slowdown on lap 3, Dalbeck moved past Bretting on the restart into second. Then on lap 6 Dalbeck slipped by Dunbar on the low side for the lead, while Bretting made it three-wide up high, just before the excitement was tempered by Niznik’s spin deep in the field. After Kangas turned around again on that restart, Dalbeck began to build a bit of a lead, while Bretting battled with Dunbar. All this time the seventh-starting Suzik and tenth-starting Adamzak raced tail-to-nose in the second five, with Adamzak unable to take advantage of the limited opportunities he had to get by the youngster.

In what seemed to be a recurring theme throughout the night, Eder – running his third feature in a row – drove by Tyler Luger into fifth place as the race progressed into its second half, and he eventually got by Tanner Hicks for fourth. With eight laps remaining Eder was by Dunbar and threatening to take second from Bretting, and it was at this point that Suzik decided to put an end to the points battle, clawing his way past Dunbar for fifth while Adamzak was stuck in eighth. Dalbeck, the 2011 track champ from Ironwood, made his one-second lead stand up for his second feature win of the season, and Suzik scored his first career track title with a solid fifth-place finish. Bretting was impressive in holding off Eder for second, and Hicks stayed in the top five throughout most of the run and finished fourth.

Coddington’s lead in the Six-Cylinder points was only seven after he only mustered a third-place run in his heat race, while Tiffany Hudack grabbed the win in hers. Then, midway through the 15-lap feature, a major slip-up nearly dashed Coddington’s title hopes altogether. Ken Tyykila held an early edge on Ron Hmielewski and a three-wide scramble for third, from which Tyler Hudack came away with the spot on lap 2 and the momentum to pull alongside Hmielewski for second on the next go-’round. Tiffany Hudack, who started alongside Coddington on row 4, clawed her way past Bubba Anderson to move into the top five, while Coddington remained mired in seventh.

On lap 6 Tyler went around Tyykila for the lead, and as the run went uninterrupted he was uncatchable. A lap later, though, while trying to muscle his way down low for a pass, the seventh-running Coddington caught the inside edge of the track; the bobble nearly caused him to loop his car into the infield grass, and he lost several crucial positions as Tiffany threatened to take fourth from Tyler Vernon. Fortunately for Coddington he had time to regroup, and over the remaining laps he picked off a position at a time, while Tiffany raced alongside Vernon but couldn’t clear him. Tyler Hudack, of Ashland, raced away to one of the biggest margins of victory of the season – just over seven seconds, while second-place Tyykila fought to his best run of the year. Hmielewski, Vernon and Tiffany Hudack followed in a tight cluster for third through fifth, and Coddington recovered for a ninth-place run – good enough for a third track championship by a scant three points. The first championship of the night was settled when Deragon grabbed the win in the final Pure Stock heat race of the season. But when feature time came around the drama was not complete, as second-in-points Tim Carbon of Highbridge used a last-lap pass to gain the win.

Glenn Dammer, in what is believed to be his last race at Ashland, slipped past the front row of Andy Compton and Jake Nevala to set the early pace. On lap 2 Brandle Pupp attempted a three-wide pass for third, but contact from Randy Conner caused Pupp to spin, resetting the field just behind the 2007 ABC Raceway champ. Pupp was again involved in a three-wide pass just after the restart – this time when Deragon tried to go high-side around Pupp and Randy Graham for second as Compton faded back. Graham was the beneficiary of the move, but within a couple of laps Deragon came charging back. On lap 6 Deragon was by Graham and in the process of sweeping around Dammer when debris was spotted on the front straight, slowing the pace. Then Nevala spun for the race’s final caution stoppage a lap later.

Graham made a strong move to the inside on the restart to take the lead from Dammer, while Deragon faded with a flat tire but stayed on the track for the final five laps to finish seventh. Carbon, who was lined up in fourth for the final restart, made several strong inside moves to gain third from Deragon and then second from Dammer with four laps to go. On the white flag lap the two-time ABC champ looked outside on Graham initially, then dove low on the back stretch to drive by Graham and take the lead into the final corner, holding on for his first feature win since July 2012. Andrew Hanson had a brilliant run after the late restart for third-place money, while Dammer slipped back to fourth ahead of Pupp. Deragon’s title is his third in the past four seasons. Fast-lap bonuses were collected by Byholm in the Mods (16.278 seconds), Oreskovich in the Supers (16.757), Eder in the Mid-Mods (17.197), and Tyler Hudack in the Sixes (17.828).

The staff of the ABC Raceway will now prepare for the 40th annual Red Clay Classic, to be held Friday and Saturday, October 2-3. Additional information will be provided soon as well as posted on the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream live online at www.wbszfm.com, starting at 3 pm on both days of the event with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

ABC 2015 Champions to be Named in Saturday’s Finale

August 29th, 2015

Ashland, WI — For the drivers in contention for divisional points titles at the ABC Raceway, it all boils down to this Saturday night.

Pepsi, Northstar Beverage of Hurley, and WIMI, 99.7 FM, of Ironwood, MI, will be the presenting sponsors of Championship Saturday Night at the three-eighths-mile northern Wisconsin red-clay oval. Champions in all five regular weekly divisions will be crowned as the 2015 points season draws to a close.

As is usually the case at ABC, no one has their named etched on a championship trophy just yet, although all five points leaders heading into the final night helped their causes significantly last weekend. Keeping in mind that the Raceway uses WISSOTA’s points system, which offers a maximum 57 possible points during each race night, no fewer than 28 drivers are still mathematically in contention for the five championships.

In the WISSOTA Modified division, Superior’s Al Uotinen of Superior strengthened his case towards a sixth WISSOTA Modified track title, and first since 2013, after a second-place finish to visiting Jody Bellefeuille of Duluth, MN, in last Saturday night’s Mod feature. Uotinen holds a 17-point advantage on Jeff Spacek of Phillips, who already has six ABC track championships, including four in the “big Mod” class.

Defending champ Steve Stuart of Ashland sits third and will need a lot of luck go his way if he hopes to have any chance of repeating, as will fourth-place Brian Mikkonen of Iron River and fifth-place Kevin Eder of Ashland.

Jeff Klopstein of Tomahawk could turn out to be the surprise answer to this season’s biggest question posed back in May – can anyone other than Scott Lawrence win a WISSOTA Super Stock title in Ashland? Klopstein, who is in his first season in a Super after a brief but successful stint in WISSOTA’s Midwest Modified class, scored his first feature win in his new ride last Saturday night here and took over the points lead.

Shane Kisling, the 2011 Red Clay Classic champ from Sarona who has made ABC his regular Saturday night haunt this year after being a frequent visitor in seasons past, is only six points back of Klopstein, while Lawrence, the 11-time defending Super Stock champ from Superior, has made the best of a tough season and still sits third, just ahead of Mason’s Nick Oreskovich and Randy Spacek of Phillips.

The Mid-Mod points battle may provide the most drama before the night is done, as no fewer than six drivers are still in the hunt for the title. Leading the way is Paul Suzik of Ironwood, MI, who, despite only a fifth-place effort in last Saturday’s feature, still inched his slim lead on Ashland’s Ryan Adamzak up to just five points.

None of the top five in the standings, which also includes Ashland drivers Tyler Vernon in third, Eder in fourth and Tanner Hicks in fifth – has ever won a points title in any division, and only 24 points separate Suzik from Hicks. Ironwood’s George Dalbeck, the 2011 ABC Mid-Mod champ, is also still in contention in sixth.

The Six-Cylinder battle has been narrowed down to a two-car race, between current points leader and two-time track champ Dale Coddington of Hayward and Ashland’s Tiffany Hudack, who won the division title in 2014. The difference between the two is just nine points, after Coddington outran Hudack to the win in last Saturday’s “Summer Sizzler” special.

Tyler Hudack and Forrest Schultz, both of Ashland, are a ways back and would need a lot of ill to befall both of the frontrunners in order to have a chance at a first-ever title for either driver.

Ashland’s Matt Deragon is the only driver at ABC in a favorable position to successfully defend his 2014 crown, as he leads the Pure Stock standings by 22 over two-time Raceway champ Tim Carbon of Highbridge. Deragon, who ran off to his 14th career feature victory here last weekend, is one away from tying Cory Casari’s track-record career Pure Stock feature win total.

While Deragon may seem to have things well in hand, four drivers – Trego’s Randy Graham, Randy Conner of Hayward, Ashland’s Brandle Pupp, and Glenn Dammer of Duluth, MN – are within seven points of each other in the battle for third place in the Pure Stock standings.

The Raceway will honor the top ten in the final standings in each class, along with other accomplishments, at its awards banquet in January.

After Saturday night, the Raceway staff will spend a month preparing for its 40th annual Red Clay Classic on October 2-3, during which upwards of 200 racers are expected to compete for a share of over $86,000 in prize money to be offered.

Hot laps for the regular-season finale start at 6:15 pm, followed by racing at 7. Adult tickets are just $10, and kids ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

Coddington Scores First ABC ‘Summer Sizzler’ Win

August 24th, 2015

Ashland, WI,- Hayward’s Dale Coddington outran Tiffany Hudack and grabbed a division-record paycheck in winning the ninth annual Six-Cylinder “Summer Sizzler” feature at the ABC Raceway on Saturday night

The headline event of the PolyDome Dirt Track Series program, presented by the Auto Value Auto Parts store of Ashland, capped off the northern Wisconsin oval’s penultimate regular-season night of the 2015 stock car racing campaign. The win, bolstered by an enhanced purse, a generous contribution from the family of the late 1996 Sixes champion Rich Morrison, and the bonus for posting the fastest lap in the 15-lap A-main (19.207 seconds), earned Coddington a $675 payday – the biggest check the Raceway has ever awarded to a Six-Cylinder driver.

Even with 106 registered entries, strong southerly winds, and a storm front threatening from the south and west, the fast-paced program was completed just after the 10 pm hour on another wide, smooth, fast track.

The track was so fast, in fact, that in group qualifying prior to the first heat race, Hudack set a new Sixes single lap track record of 17.903 seconds (75.406 mph avg), breaking the old mark of 17.987 seconds set by Scott Ovaska in 2011.

Coddington lined up behind polestarter Forrest Schultz for the 15-lap headliner and followed him past Bubba Anderson at the drop of the green flag. After the first lap the yellow lights came on for debris on the track, and on the ensuing restart Coddington again worked inside to slip past Schultz for the winning pass.

Coddington had a second-and-a-half lead on the field when the only other yellow-flag stoppage occurred on lap 7, again for debris. On this restart, however, Tyler Hudack and his sister Tiffany each snuck by on the restart into second and third, as Schultz’s car failed to respond and fell out of the top five. Tiffany moved by Tyler for second with six laps remaining and spent the final circuits cutting into the big margin Coddington had built up, but the two-time track champ and current points leader was still a full second ahead at the final stripe.

Anderson gained third ahead of Tyler Hudack in the closing laps, while Neil Adamzak ran to a strong fifth-place effort. Coddington will carry a nine-point lead over Tiffany Hudack into the final night of the season.

Duluth, MN’s Jody Bellefeuille made a rare visit to the Ashland track and ran off to the WISSOTA Modified feature win. Bellefeuille, the 2007 Red Clay Classic champ, raced around the high side of the three-eighths-mile oval and dominated in recording his first win here since June 2011.

Outside front-row starter Scott Hudack edged past polesitter Paul Niznik at the end of lap 1 for the early lead, but Mod points leader Al Uotinen pulled alongside of Hudack the next time around. Bellefeuille, who started on the outside of row 3, made a split-the-difference move between the lead pair in a run for the top spot on the next lap, but it was negated by a yellow for the spun car of Steve Stuart.

The final 17 laps ran off without interruption, with Uotinen and Bellefeuille overtaking Hudack on either side on the restart, and Bellefeuille continuing around Uotinen for the lead by lap 5. From there Bellefeuille was untouchable, building a lead of over a second-and-a-half by midrace and increasing it to well over two seconds despite having to weave through slower traffic over the final three laps.

At the checkers Bellefeuille had a three-second advantage and the fast-lap bonus (18.033 seconds), while Uotinen’s second-place performance helped him increase his points lead to 17 over Jeff Spacek heading into the final night of the regular season next weekend. Kevin Eder came on strong in the latter half of the run for third-place money, ahead of Spacek and an impressive Destin Lorimor.

Jeff Klopstein of Tomahawk hit the trifecta in the WISSOTA Super Stock feature – he scored his first career feature win the division, he broke a tie for the points lead with Shane Kisling, and he set the fast lap of the run (18.032 seconds). Klopstein entered the night with a one-point edge on Kisling, but the pair were tied going into the feature
after Kisling’s win in his earlier heat race and Klopstein’s second-place effort in his heat.

After Michael Truscott’s stalled car collected a couple others in the opening corner of the 20-lap A-feature, the 23-car field clicked away the balance of the event without a slowdown. Early on it looked as though Willie Johnsen Jr and Kevin Eder might run off to decide this one for themselves, while Terran Spacek spent the first few laps trying to keep from giving up third to his dad Randy. But on lap 6, when Randy slipped up the track in turn 4, Klopstein was there to capitalize, while also overtaking Terran in the process.

Klopstein’s stout run continued as he reeled in Eder and got by on lap 8, and then he spent a short number of laps nipping at Johnsen’s heels before diving low to steal the lead away on lap 14. After that Klopstein drew away steadily to a 2.28-second margin of victory, ahead of Johnsen and Eder, while Cole Spacek took fourth away from his cousin Terran in the late stages.

Klopstein’s points lead grew to six after Kisling’s sixth-place run, as the Super Stock rookie looks for his first-ever points title.

While Truscott seemed to struggle with his father’s Super Stock, there was no doubt he had full confidence in his own WISSOTA Midwest Modified, as the 2014 track and Red Clay Classic champ from Chippewa Falls chalked up his 14th career ABC feature win.

Tyler Luger grabbed the early lead from the pole as he outran Tanner Byholm out of the first turn. Truscott, who started outside on the fourth row, took very little time in moving up to challenge for third in the tight lead pack, and after the race was slowed by its only caution flag for Ross Fuhrman’s stalled ride, Truscott took to the high side while the visiting Dan Kingsley dove low, and the pair displaced Byholm for second and third on the race’s only restart.

A lap later Truscott swapped lanes with Kinglsey and drove under him in a pass for second, and in just three more laps he went back to the high side and swept around Luger for the lead. Truscott had a cushion of over a second before midrace, and, although he spent the last quarter of the 20-lap run working his way through traffic, he was a full 3.9 seconds ahead of Luger at the checkered flag.

Kingsley challenged Luger often for second as the pair worked through backmarkers in the closing laps but had to settle for third, while Tanner Hicks capped off an impressive run by taking fourth from Paul Suzik late in the go. Suzik extended his points lead to five over eighth-place-finishing Ryan Adamzak with one night remaining.

Like Klopstein and Truscott earlier, Ashland’s Matt Deragon started on the outside of row 4 in the 15-lap Pure Stock feature, but Deragon stayed outside and passed half the field in half of the race, then disappeared to his third win of the season and padded his points lead.

After a Brandle Pupp spin, outside-front-row starter Randy Graham grabbed the point, but a lead pack of about eight or so cars stayed in close formation behind him. Deragon was already scored in fourth place by the end of the first lap, and he continued to use a line that no one else tried as he picked off visiting Andy Poll for second on lap 3.

On the restart after Glenn Dammer’s spin on lap 6 Deragon challenged Graham for the lead, but Poll then spun and collected a couple cars to end that threat. Deragon tried the outside pass again under green, and on lap 8 he cleared Graham and began to pull away.

In the scramble for positions behind him, Pupp worked hard to get by Tim Carbon for third, and Andrew Hanson took fifth away from Randy Conner, before visitor Nick Ziegler’s car slowed on the front straight to stop the race on lap 10. From there Deragon took off and held a ten-car-length advantage over Graham at the final stripe, with Pupp close behind in third. Carbon and Dammer completed the top five.

Deragon’s lead is 22 over Carbon with one show remaining.

The 2015 track champions will be crowned as part of the ABC Raceway’s Championship Saturday Night on August 29, presented by Pepsi, North Star Beverage of Hurley, and WIMI, 99.7 FM, of Ironwood, MI. Adult tickets are $10, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, followed by heat and feature action at 7. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream live online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

Bonus Purse for Sixes, Thanks to Fans Offered at ABC

August 21st, 2015

Ashland, WI — With the 2015 stock car racing season winding down, it’s time for the ABC Raceway to say “thank you” to its many loyal fans.

Saturday night’s show will include the track’s annual Fan Appreciation Night as well as the last of the five special races spotlighting each of the Raceway’s weekly competing divisions, in a program presented by the Auto Value Auto Parts store of Ashland.

Racers, car sponsors and the Raceway will have handfuls of door prizes to be given away during the event to those in attendance, as a way of showing appreciation for the support and enthusiasm of the fans.

On the track, the ninth annual Six-Cylinder “Summer Sizzler” will offer the drivers of this unique-to-ABC division a chance to grab the headlines and maybe the big $450 first-place check awaiting Saturday’s feature winner. That winner’s share will be offered thanks to a generous contribution from Arlene Morrison, wife of the late 1996 ABC Raceway Six-Cylinder points champion Rich Morrison.

Only two race nights remain before the track crowns its 2015 division champs, and the action in the Sixes might be some of the best of the night, thanks to the combination of the big money on the line and the points battle between leader Dale Coddington of Hayward and defending champ Tiffany Hudack of Ashland. They have won four of the eight features run in the class this season – two each – and are separated by just seven points.

Interestingly, neither has won the “Sizzler,” although Tiffany’s brother Tyler Hudack of Ashland claimed the event in 2013. Ashland’s Neil Adamzak is the only other driver currently running regularly in the Sixes who has won this race besides Tyler – and he’s done it twice, in 2010 and last summer.

In two of the track’s other divisions, the lead margin is just one point. In the WISSOTA Super Stocks Tomahawk’s Jeff Klopstein leads Shane Kisling of Sarona by that thinnest of margins, while in the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds Paul Suzik of Ironwood, MI, is just one up on Ashland’s Ryan Adamzak.

Al Uotinen of Superior is trying for his fifth WISSOTA Modified track title, as he heads into Saturday’s penultimate night of racing with a 12-point cushion on Jeff Spacek of Phillips, and in the Pure Stocks Ashland’s Matt Deragon could be on his way to defending his 2014 crown with the help of his 14-point advantage on Highbridge’s Tim Carbon.

All five classes will be in action, with hot laps at 6:15 pm followed by racing at 7. Adult tickets are just $10, and kids ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. “Z-93 Race Night” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, as well as stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

Flynn Captures Mid-Mod Summer Nationals Win at ABC

August 17th, 2015

Ashland, WI,- Dave Flynn of Superior held off a determined late charge by Jake Smith for the win in the AmsOil Midwest Modified Summer Nationals feature presented by Tim’s Automotive Machine on Saturday night at the ABC Raceway.

The win was Flynn’s first-ever at ABC in a Mid-Mod and paid him $600. The event was the third race run in the four-track, three-night special event in the Northland for the popular WISSOTA-sanctioned class over the weekend and was part of a busy night of racing at the three-eighths-mile oval on a hot, muggy mid-August night.

The program, presented by the Ashland-Bayfield County Sportsmen’s Club and the Stagecoach Bar & Grill of Ashland, also included the annual visit by the Northern Vintage Stockcar Racers group, which helped the car count exceed triple digits (107) for the second straight week.

With the feature qualifiers set by passing points and the first four rows by a blind draw, Flynn started on the pole and had the early lead, but a two-car get-together forced a second attempt to start the race. Flynn sped away after the restart to a 1.2-second advantage after just four laps, while Rob Weber tried to fend off the visiting Andy Jones and Tanner Hicks.

Jones’ first move to pass Weber was negated when the caution flag waived again for debris on the track, so he slipped past Weber on the restart and began to track down Flynn, who got a strong run at the green and pulled to another big cushion.

Flynn led by over a second-and-a-half at mid-race, but behind him and Jones there were several fierce battles for position – some going three-wide for laps at a time – on the wide, smooth, well-prepared oval. Then on lap 15 the field came back to Flynn’s rear bumper after Paul Niznik was spun to bring the yellow lights back on for the final time. Smith, who restarted fifth, made a sweeping move around Ryan Adamzak and Weber to take third and then worked his way around Jones three laps later for second.

Smith began to bite into Flynn’s big lead, cutting it to less than a half-second with three laps to go. With Flynn riding the middle line, Smith tried to work the top groove to gain momentum coming off of the corners, and coming to the checkered flag Smith had a run to pull alongside the leader, but he had to tap the brakes as Flynn’s car slid up the track, nearly to the outside wall, to pinch Smith at the stripe by a quarter-second.

Jones, eleventh-starting Kevin Eder and Michael Truscott completed a closely-grouped top-five. Paul Suzik, who finished 13th, holds a one-point lead over Adamzak with two nights remaining.

For the second week in a row a veteran racer finally won his first career WISSOTA Modified feature, as Washburn’s Pat Cook drove into Victory Lane for the first time since his June 2009 win in a Mid-Mod. In the non-stop 20-lap main event Cook, who started on the pole, raced side-by-side with Scott Hudack for the first three laps before Hudack claimed the lead running on the outside groove.

On lap 4 Cook dropped to third as Jeff Spacek swept by, and points leader Al Uotinen was threatening to displace Cook for fourth by lap 6 while also running the higher line. By midrace Hudack had a three-quarter-second lead on the close-knit battle behind him, but then over the next few laps that upper groove became less advantageous to those following it, and Cook made his return trip toward the front by sticking to the low lane.

With five laps to go Cook worked by Spacek, and over the next two circuits he dug deep to grab the lead from Hudack. From there Cook drew away to a 1.6-second lead for his first-ever win in a “big Mod,” with Hudack hanging on for a season-high second-place finish. Eder came from his eighth-place starting spot to grab third from Spacek in the closing laps, and Uotinen held on for fifth.

Another landmark win came in the 15-lap Six-Cylinder A-main, as rookie Bubba Anderson of Trego scored his first feature winner’s sticker. Anderson, who purchased his car from division points leader Dale Coddington, started on the pole of the 15-lap run and grabbed the lead right from the start, beating Colten Vernon out of the first turn. Tyler Hudack put the pressure on Anderson throughout the run after gaining second on the opening lap, while DeJay Mihalek took third away a lap later.

After Ron Hmielewski’s fifth-place-running car stalled on lap 4, Anderson had his hands full with Hudack on his trunklid, while a great three-car dogfight developed between Mihalek, Coddington and second-in-points Tiffany Hudack. Eventually Tiffany claimed the position, but she could not gain on her brother and the leader, and she did not pull away from Coddington and Mihalek.

As the laps wound down Anderson extended his lead, eventually building it to 3.4 seconds at the checkers over Tyler Hudack, with Tiffany Hudack, Coddington and Mihalek in a tight group to complete the top five.

Shawn McFadden Jr of Ashland returned to Victory Lane for the first time in over a year as the winner of a hotly-contested 20-lap WISSOTA Super Stock feature that provided plenty of excitement on the track and drama in the points chase.

McFadden swapped the lead with fellow front-row starter Wayne Stricker for the first couple of laps before Stricker claimed the point, as the lead battle pulled away slightly from the balance of the field. McFadden regained his momentum by running the high side of the speedway and took the lead back by lap 6, while Nick Oreskovich, Jeff Klopstein, Pat Beeksma and Shane Kisling duked it out for third.

The racing was fast and furious until the field caught Stricker, and Oreskovich edged into second on lap 11. On the next tour, Stricker and Oreskovich got too close to the front-straight wall, and Stricker scraped the concrete and ground to a halt, causing a chain-reaction of carnage behind him that piled up several top-ten runners, including Beeksma and Scott Lawrence, who entered the night two points behind leader Kisling in the battle for the championship.

After several minutes of clean-up, McFadden again led the way, but this time with Klopstein on the charge. Klopstein got one good look to the inside on the leader but couldn’t make it stick before the second yellow flag of the race came out for Keith Corcilius’ lap 14 spin. Over the final six laps Klopstein tried several times to complete a pass, but McFadden held on with a smooth run for his second career win in a Super Stock here and seventh overall at ABC. Oreskovich and Shane Kisling were close behind in third and fourth, while Flynn added to his good night with a fifth-place paycheck.

Klopstein now holds a one-point edge on Kisling going into next week’s show.

The Pure Stocks closed the show with another non-stop feature, as rookie Justin Weinberger of Park Falls claimed his second win of the season. Chad Carlson, who was looking to follow up his win at Superior from the night before, worked to the inside on Randy Graham to take the lead after just one lap, while Tim Carbon passed Graham to take second a lap later. Weinberger, who started sixth, worked inside to take third, and points leader Matt Deragon joined the party by moving to fourth by lap 7 and challenging Weinberger.

On lap 8 Weinberger began his move to the front by taking the high line around Carbon into second, with Deragon following to third. The rookie then switched lanes and displaced Carlson at the front with less than two laps to go, and he cruised from there to a significant advantage at the stripe. Deragon was a distance back in third but just ahead of Carbon and Brandle Pupp.

Greg Manor of Chippewa Falls held off an early challenge from Paul Dolphy and then pulled away to a decisive win in the NVSR Full-Body vintage car feature, while John Bethke of Oakdale, MN, pulled off a last-lap pass of Kevin Lipsky for an entertaining win in the NVSR Super-Modified feature.

Jeff Spacek collected the bonus for setting the fastest timed lap in the Mod feature (16.982 seconds), while Klopstein was similarly rewarded in the Supers (17.500). Flynn posted the fastest lap in the Mid-Mods (17.542), and the bonus also went to Tyler Hudack in the Sixes (18.456).

The ABC Raceway will host its “Six-Cylinder Summer Sizzler” and Fan Appreciation Night on Saturday, August 22, to be presented by Auto Value Auto Parts of Ashland. The Sixes will run for an enhanced purse, boosted by a generous contribution by Arlene Morrison, wife of former Sixes champ Rich Morrison, and racers, local businesses, and the Raceway will have plenty of prizes to give away to those in attendance.

Adult tickets are $10, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, followed by heat and feature action at 7. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

Spotlight on Mid-Mods, Vintage Cars at ABC Saturday

August 15th, 2015

Ashland, WI — The ABC Raceway will be right in the middle of a special weekend for WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds when it opens the gates for stock car racing action on Saturday night.

In a program to be presented by the Ashland-Bayfield County Sportsmen’s Club, as many as 30 or more Mid-Mods could be in action for the second night of the first-ever AmsOil Midwest Modified Summer Nationals, a three-night, four-track series that will pay out over $40,000 during the weekend.

After Friday night’s series opener in Superior, drivers will have their choice of racing at either ABC or in Hibbing, MN, on Saturday before converging on Proctor, MN, for a $5,000-to-win finale. In Ashland on Saturday, the Mid-Mods will be racing for $600 to win in their feature.

But while that race will be the spotlight event of the night, it’s just one in a full slate of action scheduled. Besides the full complement of racers in the track’s five regular weekly divisions – WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds and Super Stocks in addition to the Mid-Mods, plus the track’s own Six-Cylinders and Pure Stocks – the Northern Vintage Stockcar Racers group will make its annual visit to the northern Wisconsin red-clay oval.

The club brings as many as 15-18 restored “throwback” racers to compete and offer a popular glimpse of racing from days gone by.

With only three race nights remaining in the regular season, all five points championships are still very much up for grabs. Al Uotinen of Superior leads the Modifieds, but the top four are within just 12 points. In the Supers, Sarona’s Shane Kisling took over the top spot after last weekend’s show, but again only 13 points separate the top four.

Paul Suzik of Ironwood, MI, tops the Mid-Mod standings, with the next three in the standings within 14 markers of him. And the battle in the Sixes, where Hayward’s Dale Coddington leads Tiffany Hudack of Ashland by just five, should go right down to the wire.

In the Pure Stocks, Ashland’s Matt Deragon holds a ten-point advantage – the most breathing room in any of the divisions.

During intermission of the program the Sportsmen’s Club will hold its annual drawing, with valuable prizes and cash to be handed out. Tickets will be available at the track right up until the end of the heat races.

Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, followed by racing at 7. Adult tickets are just $10, and kids ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. “Z-93 Race Night” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, as well as stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

Amundson Claims 12th ‘Pure Excitement 25′ at ABC Raceway

August 11th, 2015

Ashland, WI, – Shawn Amundson decided at the last minute to make a trip to the ABC Raceway on Saturday, after his home track cancelled its show due to wet weather.

The decision paid off to the tune of $744 – the first-place payout awarded to the first-time visitor from Barron after he became the 11th straight different winner in the 12-year history of the “Pure Excitement 25″ special for Pure Stocks at the ABC Raceway.

Of the season-high 115 entries, the Pure Stocks came out 31 strong for a total purse that reached $3,911, thanks in no small part by fan and business donations contributed throughout the night.

The first 18 laps of the “Pure Excitement 25″ clicked off at a relatively fast pace, with only three cautions flags slowing the entertaining show. Amundson, who started on the pole, immediately established himself at the point and never gave up the position, although defending race champion Michael Blevins stayed right on his rear bumper for most of the run.

Matt Deragon challenged Blevins on several occasions during the first five laps before a two-car get-together on lap 5 stopped the event for the first time. Deragon himself then dealt with a determined Tim Carbon after the restart, while Tim Carlson, Tyler Carlson and Justin Weinberger shuffled the fifth spot between them over the next four laps.

On lap 9 Justin Madsen looped his car to bring out the yellow flag for the second time, after which visiting Nick Traynor made a strong move toward the front. Traynor, who restarted seventh, slipped past Carbon and Weinberger into fourth at the drop of the green, and then went around Deragon for third on lap 14.

Amundson and Blevins had separated themselves from the rest of the field by lap 18, and were about to begin putting slower drivers down a lap, when the caution lights came on as Traynor’s brilliant run came to a disappointing end due to mechanical woes. This triggered a series of stoppages that slowed the pace of the race to a crawl, which was especially frustrating for Amundson, who had a good rhythm going in keeping Blevins at bay.

Back-to-back messes delayed the field from scoring lap 19, and then Blevins got a run on Amundson for the lead coming off turn 2 on lap 21. But a five-car skirmish negated that move, and Blevins never had much of a chance to show a fender alongside Amundson after that.

On lap 22 Tyler Carlson’s car got loose and collected several others, including Andrew Hanson, whose car ended up on its roof. Hanson was unhurt. Then seventh-running Glenn Dammer’s racer dropped into the turn 2 infield to bring about the final caution stop of the race, after which he continued despite a badly-damaged rear suspension.

Amundson sped on to the historic win, with Blevins a short distance back. Deragon held third, while Weinberger claimed fourth place late in the run ahead of Tim Carlson.

“I had my line down,” explained a happy Amundson in Victory Lane afterward, “but I had to change it up,” after Blevins showed his hand with the inside move for the lead that was negated by the caution flag.

In the WISSOTA Modified 20-lap feature, Brian Mikkonen scored his first career feature win since moving into the division full-time three seasons ago. The former three-time Super Stock champ from Iron River led for the early portion of the race, gave up the lead on the race’s lone restart, and then got it back on the final lap.

Mikkonen beat pole-starter Neil Balduc to the first corner and rode the outside line of the three-eighths-mile red-clay oval to as much as a three-quarter-second lead, while Balduc had all he could do to keep Al Uotinen and Jeff Spacek behind him. Uotinen finally cleared Balduc for second on lap 8, just before Paul Niznik’s spin brought about the lone yellow flag.

Uotinen used a strong inside move to take the lead from Mikkonen just after the field took the green, and he worked his way to a half-second advantage with five laps to go, while Kevin Eder came on strong to get around Balduc for third with Kevin Adams in tow. But Mikkonen closed the gap and was right on Uotinen’s rear bumper as the leaders took the white flag. Uotinen, who ran the bottom groove for most of the event, slipped up the track going through the final set of turns, allowing Mikkonen to drive under and steal the win away – the 27th of his career at ABC.

Eder, Adams and Balduc followed to complete the top five. Uotinen interrupted Mikkonen’s Victory Lane interview with a big congratulatory hug of the winner.

By comparison to their past two feature runs here, the WISSOTA Super Stocks clicked off a relatively clean A-main, with only four caution-flag slowdowns, none of which resulted in significant damage. And when the 20 laps were completed Curt Myers of Cameron had his third feature win of the year here after taking a couple weeks off.

Polesitter Wayne Stricker, who had been concentrating on his Midwest Modified in recent weeks, brought the Super back out and outdueled Don Muzzy for the initial lead. Dave Flynn then worked his way by Stricker and set the pace for a few laps, with Myers claiming second on lap 5 just prior to a Marcus Dunbar spin.

Myers tried a couple of moves to get past Flynn after the restart before taking the lead away on lap 7, and even after a two-car get-together on lap 9, a Brady Mesko-Jokinen spin on lap 12, and a Nick Oreskovich slowdown on lap 14, Myers proved just too tough to catch as he sailed to his 22nd career feature win here.

Over the final half-dozen green-flag laps Shane Kisling tracked down and passed Flynn for second, while Randy Spacek held off division rookie Pat Beeksma for fourth.

Former two-time Red Clay Classic champion Shane Halopka made his first visit of the season count by scoring the win in the 20-lap WISSOTA Midwest Modified headliner. Halopka weaved through a lot of traffic to get to the front after starting inside on row 4.

Front-row starters Tad Bretting and Ryan Adamzak went tooth-and-nail for the top spot during the early stages of the run before Adamzak snagged the lead, while Paul Suzik grabbed second from Bretting a lap later. After a Rob Weber spin the field clicked off another 15 uninterrupted laps, during which Halopka, who started sixth, made his move.

As Adamzak and Suzik pulled away, Halopka won a three-car battle for third on lap 7, then he reeled in Adamzak and took second away on lap 8. After challenging Suzik for a couple laps, Halopka used the slower Bill Muhlig as a pick and slipped around the track points leader on lap 11 and would not be challenged from there, pulling away to as much as a 2.3-second lead before Ross Fuhrman’s spin brought about the yellow flag with three laps to go.

Halopka’s seventh career win in Ashland came with about a one-second lead on Suzik at the checkers, with eighth-starting Dan Kingsley and ninth-starting Eder following. Adamzak regained fifth from Tyler Vernon on the white-flag lap.

For the third straight week a Hudack sibling stood in Victory Lane after the Six-Cylinder feature, and for the second time in those three weeks it was Tiffany. The defending track champ from Ashland took advantage of two late restarts to steal the win.

After Colton Vernon worked his way around pole-starter Ken Tyykila for the lead on lap 2, it looked as though Vernon was on his way to his first career feature win, as the 15-lapper stayed green for the first 13 laps. DeJay Mihalek became Vernon’s closest threat on lap 4 with an outside pass of Tyykila, and Tiffany worked her way into third on lap 7, but by then the lead pair had a comfortable margin on the pack.

Hudack, however, closed the distance as the race progressed, and she found herself within a car-length of Mihalek when the caution came out for her brother Tyler’s stalled car on lap 13. Tiffany tried to get by Mihalek on the first restart, but after a caution for Jonathan Popp’s spin she slipped around Mihalek on that restart, and then dove low to take the lead for good coming under the white flag.

Points leader Dale Coddington also used the restarts to his advantage, taking second from Vernon on the final lap, while Mihalek held on for fourth. A last-corner scramble put a couple cars into spins, but first-nighter Travis Swanson was repositioned into fifth at the pay window.

Along with the many anonymous fan donations, a great many others contributed to the overall “Pure Excitement 25″ feature purse, including Bruce Kalmon, NAPA Auto Parts, Auto Value Auto Parts, O’Reilly’s Auto Parts, Greg’s Ultimate Auto, Eder Brothers Auto Service, FastLane Motorsports, Manitou Inn, Cheri Deragon, Matt Deragon Racing, Cheryl & Nick Gima, Dalbeck Logging; JR Anderson Racing, Mike Kisling, Shane Kisling Racing, Chris Beeksma, Muzzy Racing, John Taitt, Jeff Spacek Racing, Randy Spacek Racing, Hudack Racing, Lake Shore Sales & Service, Uotinen Racing, Nick Oreskovich Racing, Nye Racing, Highbridge Oasis, All-Performance Dyno Service, and Chicago Iron & Supply.

John Taitt performed yeoman’s duty in organizing and collecting the contributions for the event.

Feature fast laps were set by Uotinen in the Mods (16.501 seconds), Myers in the Supers (16.860), Halopka in the Mid-Mods (16.994) and Tiffany Hudack in the Sixes (18.438). An overcast, cool night kept the track very fast and tacky, resulting in all four fast-lap times falling within approximately a half-second of their respective divisional track records.

The first-ever Midwest Modified Summer Nationals will make a stop at the ABC Raceway on Saturday, August 15, to be presented by the Ashland-Bayfield County Sportsmen’s Club and the Stagecoach Bar & Grill of Ashland. Mid-Mods will run for a $600 winner’s check, as the tour will start on Friday in Superior, run at Ashland and in Hibbing, MN, on Saturday, and finish with a $5,000-to-win show in Proctor, MN, on Sunday.

The Northern Vintage Stockcar Racers club is also scheduled to make its annual visit to compete with restored and vintage stock cars and super-modifieds.

Adult tickets are $10, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, followed by heat and feature action at 7. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

Pure Stocks to Race for Big Bucks on Saturday at ABC

August 8th, 2015

Ashland, WI — The ABC Raceway will host its 12th annual “Pure Excitement 25″ special event for Pure Stocks this Saturday night.

The program, to be presented by the Bad River Lodge, Casino & Convention Center of Odanah, is expected to draw upwards of 30 of the entry-level race cars and their drivers from several area tracks to compete for their share of a purse that will start at around $4,000 but should climb significantly higher with the help of generous fan and sponsor donations.

The brainchild of former Ashland racer and race car builder Bruce Kalmon, the “Pure Excitement 25″ was one of the first events of its kind in the Upper Midwest when it was initially run in 2004. The premise of the program is to give the competitors in the most basic racing division a chance to not only be in the spotlight, but also to run for a very generous paycheck.

By “working the crowd” for donations to the overall purse, Kalmon was able to build up payouts that were well in excess of what drivers in this division were used to seeing. That formula will be in use this Saturday as well.

The ABC Raceway recently announced that it had increased its regular weekly purse for Pure Stockers anyway, offering the winner of each Saturday’s features $125 beginning August 1 and fattening up the payout for nearly every heat and other feature finishing position as well, as a way of expressing its appreciation to the division’s drivers.

But for the “Pure Excitement 25,” the winner could take home as much as $1,000 or more, contingent upon how much the overall purse increases as the night progresses. And that will depend on donations by fans and businesses, who are encouraged to either contribute to the overall purse or donate to a particular finishing position in the 25-lap headline event.

The winner of last year’s “PE25,” Michael Blevins of Hibbing, MN, took home an event-record $1,413 first-place check. It was the third year in a row and fourth time in the eleven events held that the total payout met or exceeded $5,500.

Interestingly enough, Blevins was the tenth different driver to win the event. Cory Casari of Montreal won the first two of these Pure Stock specials in 2004-’05, but no one has repeated since. Blevins is also one of three drivers whose only career win in Ashland came at this event, with the others being Dan Larsen of Hermantown, MN (2008) and Rob Christman of Superior (’09).

Saturday’s program will also include the track’s other weekly divisions – WISSOTA Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds, plus Six-Cylinders. Points battles are very tight in every class, and with invitationals not too far away there is always the chance that visiting drivers will stop by to challenge the locals.

Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, followed by racing at 7. Adult tickets are just $10, and kids ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. “Z-93 Race Night” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, as well as stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

Anderson Visits ABC, Takes Mod Feature Win

August 3rd, 2015

Ashland, WI,- Two-time Red Clay Classic champion Ashley Anderson of Elk Mound made a rare regular-season visit to the ABC Raceway pay off as he outdueled Jeff Spacek for an exciting WISSOTA Modified feature win Saturday night.

Anderson was one of four first-time winners on the season at the northern Wisconsin oval, as part of an 89-car PolyDome Dirt Track Series program that included kids’ bike races presented by Chicago Iron & Supply of Ashland and a tribute to the late engine builder Brian Koch presented by Northern Wisconsin Fence of Phillips.

Anderson and Spacek put on quite a show during a 20-lap Mod A-main that took just six minutes. Spacek wrestled the lead away from pole-starter Scott Hudack on the first lap and, with a Koch-built motor under the hood, looked determined to win on the night dedicated to his former sponsor and engine builder. Spacek ran the high groove to a full-second lead on the field when Anderson, who started outside on the third row, took over second on lap 4.

Anderson then chipped away at Spacek’s margin, eventually drawing alongside the leader on lap 9. On the next circuit the pair made significant contact, causing Anderson to bobble and drop back, but he made a great save and again tracked down Spacek.

On lap 14 Spacek slipped a little too far up the corner in turn 4, opening the bottom for Anderson to sneak by, but Spacek recovered nicely and resumed the battle. The leaders cleared the slower Dustin Hudack with a couple laps left, and Anderson pulled away from there to win for the first time here since his 2013 RCC victory. Spacek was over a second-and-a-third back but quite a ways ahead of Bill Byholm, Kevin Eder and Scott Hudack.

The points leader coming into the night, defending ABC Mod Vhamp Steve Stuart, took a horrendous tumble during his heat race. He came away unhurt, and with his car badly damaged Stuart still made an effort to start the feature. He pulled the car off before taking the green, and his 14th-place finish assured him of enough points to hold on to a tie for second in the standings with Spacek, just three back of Al Uotinen.

The WISSOTA Super Stocks struggled through another caution-filled feature, with the race being cut to just 11 laps after the 30-minute time limit had been long exceeded. After polesitter DJ Keeler bobbled to stack up the field behind him on the initial start, Randy Spacek and Andy Grymala battled side-by-side for a couple green-flag laps before Randy’s son, divisional rookie Terran, looped his ride for the second caution flag of the race.

Shawn McFadden charged hard into third on the restart, bringing with him eighth-starting Shane Kisling. By lap 6 Randy Spacek had built up a 1.1-second advantage on the field, but a spun Dave Flynn brought the field back to his trunklid. McFadden and Spacek got together on the next restart, causing both cars to slow and drop back and handing the lead to Grymala.

On lap 8 second-in-points Jeff Klopstein’s car ground to a halt against the turn 2 guardrail, putting points leader Scott Lawrence and Kisling on Grymala’s tail for that restart. Kisling used an outside move to edge past Grymala at the drop of the green, but that was negated by Cory Casari’s stalled ride.

Kisling tried again on the next attempt to race, and on lap 9 he got by Grymala to stay. During the next circuit several other frontrunners were involved in a huge mess, sending Lawrence and Randy Spacek to the pits for repairs. Over the next two green-flag laps Kisling was able to build a three-quarter-second cushion, but Keeler’s car tagged the guardrail and stopped to slow the pace, and then McFadden’s car sputtered on the restart, with at least five cars scrambling and crashing in the melee behind him.

At this point the race was in excess of its allotted time, forcing a green-white-checkered finish, during which Kisling, of Sarona, ran off to a small cushion for his first win here since last July. Super Stock rookie Pat Beeksma charged up late for an impressive second-place performance, ahead of Grymala, Nick Oreskovich and Cole Spacek.

Although the WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature went its scheduled 15 laps, it, too, was a yellow-flag-filled event. The front-row pair of John Kallas and Brad Seavers put on a good battle up front for the large crowd in attendance prior to a lap 2 get-together involving visiting Tad Schoonover and Paul Niznik. The battle between Kallas and Seavers continued for a few more laps after the restart before Seavers claimed the lead, and just before a three-car collection on lap 5 stopped the race again.

Kallas’ night took a turn for the worse when his race car got loose and caused several cars behind him to check up and spin. Seavers then had hard-chargers Tanner Hicks and Wayne Stricker challenging him on that restart, and also after going back to green following Tanner Byholm’s stalled ride stopping the action on lap 8.

But over the final six laps all eyes were on Kevin Eder and Paul Suzik. Eder, who started the run ninth, restarted fifth and immediately went high-side to sweep around Tyler Vernon and Hicks for third. Eder then picked off Stricker for second on lap 12 and Seavers for the lead one circuit later, and he would stay there for the restart after Schoonover’s second spin on lap 14.

Meanwhile, points leader Suzik, who started 21st on the 22-car grid, restarted sixth and followed right in Eder’s tire tracks, taking fourth just before the lap 14 caution and then third on lap 16.

Eder scooted to a two-second advantage on the field while Suzik worked to get by Stricker for second, but Seavers’ stalled car just before the white flag was to be thrown set up a green-white-checkered finish. Suzik made a couple attempts to pass the leader, and he pulled alongside Eder coming off of the final turn, but Eder, of Ashland, held on to win his third Mid-Mod A-main of 2015 – and fourth feature win overall this summer at Ashland – by a mere seven one-hundredths of a second in a thrilling finish. Ryan Adamzak charged from the 13th starting spot to claim third, with Stricker and Vernon following close in the top five.

The Six-Cylinders put on a terrific show, with the top six staying within a couple car-lengths of each other for nearly the entire 15 laps of their feature event. Jonathan Popp set the pace from the pole and led for the first full half of the race, which was stopped only once, for a Bubba Anderson spin after the opening lap.

Popp held off a pack of contenders that included Neil Adamzak, DeJay Mihalek, siblings Tyler and Tiffany Hudack, and Dale Coddington, who swapped positions two through six frequently during the long green-flag sequence. It took until lap 7 for Tyler Hudack to finally make a definitive charge to the front, when he claimed second from Adamzak, and four laps later Hudack worked outside on Popp to get by for the lead. Over the remaining laps Hudack pulled to a two-and-a-half-second advantage for his first win of the season, helping him move up to third in the standings. Popp held on for a career-best second-place effort, just ahead of points leader Coddington, Adamzak, and Ron Hmielewski, who sliced his way into the top five in the final half-lap.

The 15-lap Pure Stock finale was also stalled only once by a caution flag and also resulted in a first-time feature winner. Rookie Justin Weinberger of Park Falls outran polestarter Bob Skrobot to the first corner and held on for his first career feature win. Weinberger led a tight pack of seven cars in the lead group but held a smooth, steady line as veteran Jeff Christman tried his best to shake the youngster. Randy Conner threatened to take second from Christman just before Jake Nevala spun on lap 6 for the race’s only delay. Weinberger, the grandson of two-time ABC Raceway champion Ron Weinberger, then ran off to a two-car advantage once back under green and stayed there ahead of Christman for the remainder of the race, while Matt Deragon, who retook the points lead, made a strong move around Connor for third with five laps to go. Brandle Pupp ended a solid night with a fifth-place finish.

Fast-lap bonuses, presented by Northern Clearing, were awarded to Anderson in the Mods (16.557 seconds), Randy Spacek in the Supers (17.374), Eder in the Mid-Mods (17.381), and Coddington in the Sixes (18.550). Northern Wisconsin Fence, along with a handful of other sponsors and race teams with close ties to Koch, put together a generous enhancement to the night’s purse while also passing out cash to a few lucky fans as part of a random drawing.

Chicago Iron & Supply, One-on-One Hair Design, Moore’s Army-Navy Store, Apostle Highlands Golf Course, Lake Shore Cafe, and Fred Lau Construction provided many more giveaways for the fans, and the Raceway gave away new bicycles to four lucky youngsters.

The Pure Stocks will be in the spotlight on Saturday, August 8, for the 12th annual “Pure Excitement 25,” presented by the Bad River Lodge, Casino & Convention Center of Odanah. A generous purse of nearly $4,000 is set for the entry-level division during this hugely popular event, and fan and business contributions will be welcomed as the track hopes to exceed the race’s record offering of over $5,500. All five divisions will be in action.

Adult tickets are $10, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, followed by heat and feature action at 7. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

Kids’ Bike Races to Headline ABC Raceway Show on Saturday

August 1st, 2015

Ashland, WI — As one of the most popular nights of the regular-season schedule, it’s always been fun to watch the younger fans pedal around the ABC Raceway’s red-clay oval.

Chicago Iron & Supply of Ashland will present Kids’ Bike Races at the award-winning three-eighths-mile speedplant just south of Ashland on Saturday night. Youngsters in a variety of age groups from 2 to teens will be invited out to compete on the same race track as their heroes do for fun and prizes. And this year the track has added an adult division.

Saturday’s program will include the track’s five weekly divisions – WISSOTA Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds, as well as its own Six-Cylinders and Pure Stocks – for heat-race and feature action as the regular season enters its final month.

Also part of Saturday’s program will be a special tribute to Brian Koch by Northern Wisconsin Fence of Phillips. Koch, a popular race engine builder from the Phillips area who put together strong, reliable powerplants for a good number of racers in northern Wisconsin, passed away prior to the opening of the 2015 stock car racing season.

As part of the tribute, Northern Wisconsin Fence has collaborated with several other businesses and drivers from the area to put together a nice increase to the overall purse for the racers, as well as a few pleasant surprises for fans in attendance.

With just five race nights remaining in the season, the points battles in each division will become more heated. In the Modifieds Ashland’s Steve Stuart holds a mere four-point lead on Al Uotinen of Superior, while in the Super Stocks Superior’s Scott Lawrence has Jeff Klopstein of Tomahawk just three points back.

Paul Suzik of Ironwood, MI, leads an incredible battle in the Mid-Mods, where the top five are within a six-point spread, and in the Pure Stocks leader Randy Graham of Trego has his two closest challengers within three points of him.

The Six-Cylinder championship chase has Dale Coddington of Hayward ahead of Ashland’s Tiffany Hudack by just four points.

Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, followed by first heat race of the night at 7. Adult tickets are just $5 each on this night only, and kids ages 12 and under are still admitted free with a paid adult admission. “Z-93 Race Night” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, as well as stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

Dalbeck Ends Three-Year ABC Feature Win Drought

July 28th, 2015

Ashland, WI, – Former track champ George Dalbeck of Ironwood, MI, stole the lead away from Tyler Vernon early and ran off to his first feature win in nearly three seasons at the ABC Raceway on Saturday night.

Dalbeck was one of five drivers to take home huge trophies as part of the Kim Parsons Memorial Trophy Tour stop at the northern Wisconsin red-clay speedplant, on a warm late-July night in which presenting sponsors Heartland Communications of Ashland and the NAPA Auto Parts stores of Ashland & Washburn invited fans to “Jam the Stands.” Organized by veteran racing announcer Steve Parsons, the Trophy Tour is designed to raise awareness for the need for organ and tissue donors, in memory of Steve’s late daughter Kim.

Eighty-one cars competed in the PolyDome Dirt Track Series event, with 19 coming out for the 20-lap WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature. After a lap 1 stoppage for debris, Cody Carlson scooted to the front from his outside row 1 starting spot, and Vernon quickly followed Carlson past pole-starter Ross Fuhrman into second. Vernon was able to overtake Carlson for the lead on lap 3 just prior to Robert Hyde’s spin.

On that restart Dalbeck used a strong outside move on Vernon to sweep around for the lead, and despite one more slowdown for a two-car spin on lap 4, Dalbeck led the field for the remaining 16 non-stop laps, with Vernon solidly entrenched in second. Dalbeck’s lead was as much as 1.3 seconds late in the run before Vernon trimmed that to just a shade under a second at the final stripe. In an emotional Victory Lane, Dalbeck dedicated his win to former racer Don Koivisto, who is battling significant health issues and was just inducted into the ABC Raceway Hall of Fame last Saturday.

Wayne Stricker took third place midway through the run and stayed there until the end, while Carlson held on for fourth and posted the fastest lap early in the race with a time of 17.758 seconds. Tanner Hicks finished up a solid night with fifth-place money, and Paul Suzik’s sixth-place effort moved him back into the Mid-Mod points lead, by one ahead of Vernon.

Back-to-back non-stop features finished up what had been a fast-paced program, despite a crash-filled WISSOTA Super Stock main event. The first of the two green-to-checkered runs came courtesy of the WISSOTA Modifieds, where Steve Stuart of Ashland chased and challenged Paul Niznik for the first ten laps, then passed him and ran off over the latter ten to his second win of the season.

Niznik showed some early power by staying with Steve Lavasseur and eventually edging ahead of his front-row starting mate on lap 2. Niznik then stayed smooth as he fended off heated attacks from both Jeff Spacek and Al Uotinen, while Stuart, who started on the fourth row, slipped through traffic into fourth just four laps into the race.

On lap 10, with Stuart having already snuck under Spacek for third, the defending track champ stuck the nose of his car to the low side of the south corner, while Uotinen stayed up high, and the pair surrounded and overtook Niznik by the end of the back straight, with Stuart becoming the new leader and Uotinen retaining runner-up status. From there Stuart sped away to a full-second lead by lap 13, and he increased that to 2.3 seconds with three laps remaining.

Stuart’s second win of the season moved him back into the division’s points lead, with Uotinen following up his big win in Superior the night before with his best run of the year here and fifth-straight top-five finish. Niznik, who also claimed the fast lap bonus (17.684 seconds), took third ahead of impressive runs by Brian Mikkonen and Pat Cook.

The 20-lap Super Stock A-main was a crash-fest that knocked out or badly damaged at least a dozen of the 21 cars on hand. It started with front-runners Scott Lawrence and Shane Kisling connecting and taking each other off the track on the first attempt to start the race, and it continued with three more tries to get the first lap in, including a nine-car melee that took out Dave Flynn’s fast ride for the night.

On the fourth try polesitter Cory Casari paced the field for a couple of laps, but Nick Oreskovich, who worked an inside line to take second away from Kisling on lap 2, duplicated the move to slice his way past Casari for the lead on lap 4. After Don Muzzy’s spin slowed the pace again on lap 5, another three-car mess kept the event from continuing on.

The field settled down to just racing from there on out, and Oreskovich, from Mason, stayed out front for his first win of the season, setting the race’s fastest lap along the way (17.858 seconds). Kisling threw everything at him that he could to force the “Flyin’ Farmer” to make a mistake but had to settle for a close second, while Lawrence – who worked his way from the very tail of the 21-car grid after the early incident with Kisling – scored a third-place finish ahead of Shawn McFadden, Jr, and the badly-damaged car of Randy Spacek.

Tiffany Hudack of Ashland scored her second career feature win in the 15-lap Six-Cylinder feature, exactly one year to the weekend after chalking up her first-ever win. Hudack had to weave her way from the third row and wait for an opening to present itself while a determined DeJay Mihalek held off Tiffany’s hard-charging brother Tyler Hudack over the first ten laps.

Tiffany had made her way to third by lap 6 and was a distance back of the lead-pair battle, but the break she needed came on lap 10, when Aaron Mashlan’s machine blew its motor and dropped oil along the length of the front straightaway to bring about the race’s first caution flag. Tiffany took advantage on the restart, using the low groove to slip past Mihalek for the lead. She then maintained that lead after a lap 12 restart that followed a two-car tangle, and she outran points leader Dale Coddington over the final three laps for the win. Tyler Hudack posted the fastest lap of the run (18.093 seconds) en route to a third-place performance, while rookie Bubba Anderson and first-nighter Neil Adamzak completed the top five.

A non-stop 15-lap Pure Stock finale kept those who stayed to the end entertained, as Darwin Brown of Cumberland made his first-ever appearance at Ashland a memorable one. Brown started dead-last on the 16-car feature grid, but by using a slightly higher line than most around the smooth three-eighths-mile oval he eventually overtook everyone in the field.

Jeff Christman jumped ahead of pole-starter Brandle Pupp and clung to the race lead for the first 14 laps and change, although Pupp was only one of a strong contingent of challengers right on Christman’s trunklid. Among those in hot pursuit was Tim Carbon, who worked his way past Pupp for second on lap 3, only to give the position back to Pupp by lap 5.

By mid-race Brown was up to fifth, and when Pupp’s ride wiggled a little on lap 9 Carbon took over the runner-up spot again, with Glenn Dammer following him to third. Brown took away fourth on lap 12, and with two laps to go he edged ahead of Dammer for third. Staying in the middle lane, Brown pulled even with Carbon and right behind Christman as the white flag waived, and over the course of the final lap he crept his way past both of them to take the lead coming off turn 4 for his first-ever win here. Christman, Carbon, Pupp and Dammer followed in the top five in close formation.

Randy Graham’s eighth-place effort, combined with a nightmarish night for Matt Deragon, gives Graham a one-point lead in the Pure Stock standings with five race nights remaining.

On Saturday night the ABC Raceway will invite the younger fans to come out and compete on the red-clay oval during its annual bike races, to be presented by Chicago Iron & Supply of Ashland. In addition, Northern Wisconsin Fence of Phillips will pay tribute to the late engine builder Brian Koch with some special offerings for both the drivers and the fans.

Adult tickets are $10, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, followed by heat and feature action at 7. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

ABC Raceway Inviting Fans to ‘Jam the Stands’ on Saturday

July 25th, 2015

Ashland, WI — If you’re a race fan – or even if you’re just looking for something fun to do on a Saturday night – the ABC Raceway has a great idea for you, at a very affordable price.

Heartland Communications, which airs popular local radio stations WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and WJJH, 96.7 FM, throughout the Chequamegon Bay area, will present the annual “Jam the Stands” Night of stock car racing at the award-winning three-eighths-mile red-clay oval located just south of Ashland.

The half-price adult admission ticket was an idea kindled during the economic downturn of 2008-’09 as a way to keep fans coming to the races.

“I remember other track promoters telling us we were crazy, that we were committing financial suicide,” recalled Raceway president Eric Erickson recently. “Instead, it has turned into one of our most attended regular-season race nights of the year.

“Those same other promoters who thought we would lose our shirts are now hosting similar events of their own. It’s a great way to introduce new fans to the sport and to the racing family.”

Saturday’s program will include the track’s five weekly divisions – WISSOTA Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds, as well as its own Six-Cylinders and Pure Stocks – for complete rounds of qualifying heat races and main-event action.

The event is also scheduled to be the first of two stops in Ashland for the Kim Parsons Memorial Trophy Tour. Long-time racing announcer Steve Parsons is slated to present trophies to each of the five feature winners, in honor of his late daughter Kim. Steve uses his visits to many Wisconsin racing facilities during the summer months to promote organ and tissue donation awareness.

The second stop for the Trophy Tour is set for October 2-3, during the Raceway’s 40th Red Clay Classic.

Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, followed by first heat race of the night at 7. Adult tickets are just $5 each on this night only, and kids ages 12 and under are still admitted free with a paid adult admission. “Z-93 Race Night” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, as well as stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

Byholm, Flynn, Eder Grab RoC Qualifiers at ABC

July 20th, 2015

Ashland, WI – On a night when the ABC Raceway added to its Hall of Fame roster, the feature winners visiting Victory Lane on Saturday included some repeat performers as well as one familiar face that hadn’t been there in a while.

Bill Byholm of Glidden won his first WISSOTA Modified feature since August 2010 to earn an invitation to the Afco Shocks Race of Champions in mid-September in Huron, SD, during the WISSOTA 100. Others earning invites to the prestigious event included Superior’s Dave Flynn and Ashland’s Kevin Eder, while Forrest Schultz of Ashland and Tim Carlson of Superior collected their second wins of the season here.

During intermission of the race program, nine new inductees were entered into the ABC Raceway Hall of Fame and introduced to the large, appreciative crowd on hand on a warm, breezy evening. In the Drivers category, the Class of 2015 included Dick Christman, Steve Kieber, Don Koivisto and Jule Wilcox, while in the Volunteer & Contributor category the inductees included the late Chuck & Lucy Anderson and their family, Bob & Gerladine Korpela, Walt & Diane Martens, Mike & Linda Sorenson and their family, and Lorraine and the late Jerry Zifko.

Kieber, the former Mod standout here, threw the green flag over that division’s 20-lap A-main, and early on it seemed no one was going to catch front-row starter Jeff Spacek, who swept around polesitter Rick Rivord for the initial lead. Spacek pulled to a 1.2-second lead in a matter of just five laps, while Rivord held off a heated battle between Brian Mikkonen and Eder.

As the laps clicked off without any yellow-flag delays Eder surged forward, taking third on lap 6 and then staying on the upper groove of the wide, slick smooth red-clay oval to overtake Rivord for second a lap later. Eder then began to eat into Spacek’s cushion while Al Uotinen drove up to fourth with a three-wide pass of Mikkonen and Byholm on lap 9.

As Eder reeled in Spacek, Byholm nabbed third on lap 12, and within another four laps Eder was taking peeks to the inside on Spacek going into the corners while Byholm was within a couple car-lengths. It was while maneuvering through lapped traffic that Eder and Byholm swapped lanes while attempting to overtake Spacek, and Eder had the lead coming under the white flag. But Byholm split between the other two and edged ahead down the back straight, holding on to win his 26th career feature here by .61 seconds.

Spacek, who set the fast lap-time of the race at 18.794 seconds, nipped Eder for second by a couple feet, while Rivord and Uotinen completed the top five. Ironically, it was one year ago this weekend that Byholm sustained a severe injury from a freak accident while unloading his race car at the Ashland track that cost him the second half of the 2014 racing season.

Flynn was on a mission tonight in both his WISSOTA Super Stock and Midwest Modified tonight, and he wheeled the Super Stock to his 11th career win in Ashland. In what is believed to be the 500th Super Stock feature run at the ABC Raceway, Flynn drove under front-row starters DJ Keeler and Shawn McFadden Jr and sprinted to a 1.6-second lead just three laps into the 20-lap event. When Shane Kisling worked the high side to pull alongside Keeler in the battle for second, there was – for a moment – the chance that he and Flynn would repeat the thrilling side-by-side race for the lead that they had the week before.

But Keeler was determined not to let Kisling by, and after a lap 5 restart Kisling made a rare error and spun himself out while trying to clear Keeler for second. Curt Myers then challenged and eventually overtook Keeler, then stayed in Flynn’s tire tracks for the next 11 laps.

Just as the lead pair caught the backmarkers, Mike Hince spun to put the leaders into the clear, and behind them the racing was furious for third between Keeler, Jeff Klopstein and Scott Lawrence. Eventually Keeler got shuffled back a few positions, and it was his spin on lap 16 that tightened up the field again. Myers slipped up the track on the restart, costing him second, before the race was stopped for debris on the next lap.

From there Flynn held off a furious effort by Klopstein to earn the win, and collected the fast-lap bonus in the process (18.854 seconds). Lawrence was less than a car-length back in third, just ahead of Myers and a nice fifth-place effort by Andy Grymala.

The start of the 20-lap WISSOTA Midwest-Modified A-main was slowed when David Simpson and Ryan Adamzak tangled coming off the first turns, but from there Mickey Nosser set the early pace while Eder was on the charge. Looking for his second straight win the Mid-Mods here, Eder worked past pole-starter Cody Carlson for second on lap 3, just before Adamzak, who had followed Eder into third, looped his ride to bring out the yellow flag again.

Over the next dozen non-stop laps, Eder first snuck a peek to the outside, then completed the outside move to take the lead from Nosser on lap 6 and pulled away in a hurry. That’s because charging through the field were Mike Truscott – from his 11th-place starting spot to third by lap 6 – and Flynn, who started dead-last in the 11-car semi-feature to the win there, and then started the feature 21st but clawed his way to fifth by lap 10. Truscott took second from Nosser on lap 14, and Flynn swiped fourth away from visiting Kyle Runkle just before Runkle spun himself out of contention with five laps remaining.

Eder scooted away to a 1.2-second lead on Truscott after the restart, but Truscott trimmed that to .58 seconds at the checkered, with Flynn finishing his impressive run in third just ahead of Nosser and Tanner Byholm. Eder padded his paycheck by adding the fast-lap bonus with a lap of 18.964 seconds during the run.

As he alluded to in his Victory Lane interview, the last three laps of the 15-lap Six-Cylinder feature may have been the longest of Schultz’s racing career. That’s because a series of caution stoppages put arguably the top three cars in the division right on his tail for restarts.

Tyler Hudack set the initial pace and stretched his lead to a comfortable margin on front-row starters Bubba Anderson and Adam Traaholt. But Schultz, who won his first-ever feature here on July 27, worked his way by Anderson for second just two laps in, and Dale Coddington followed suit to third on lap 3.

Schultz tracked down Hudack and eventually displaced him as the leader with a strong move on lap 6, but before he could build any amount of a lead Aaron Mashlan’s spin brought the field back to his rear push-bar.

Over the next five laps Coddington, Tyler Hudack, and Tyler’s sister, defending track champ Tiffany Hudack, waged a fierce battle for second place, allowing Schultz to pull away to a significant advantage. Then Jonathan Popp spun with three laps left, negating Schultz’s big lead, and then Colton Vernon hit the front straight concrete hard coming out of turn 4 to change the green lights to yellow. With Coddington and the Hudack siblings restarting right on his tail, Schultz was smooth on his getaways and held on for his second win in three race nights, while setting the last lap in the process (19.735 seconds).

Tiffany Hudack won the battle for second, while Coddington grabbed third as Tyler Hudack’s car slowed coming off the final corner. Brandon Ottman drove to an impressive career-best fifth-place paycheck.

Like Eder in the Mid-Mods, Tim Carlson also captured his second-straight feature, coming in the 15-lap Pure Stock finale. Carlson raced side-by-side with rookie Justin Weinberger for a couple of laps before a lap 2 safety caution, and then Carlson, Randy Graham and Matt Deragon surrounded and overwhelmed the rookie for the top three spots.

As Deragon drew alongside Graham in a battle for second, Carlson pulled away by a safe distance, but Jake Nevala’s spin brought the field up close at mid-race. Deragon won the battle for second, and he chased Carlson away from the rest of the field for a couple more laps before back-to-back caution slowdowns on lap 11 bunched things up again, but Carlson was able to hold off any threats by Deragon for his fifth career feature win in Ashland. Graham held on for third ahead of strong efforts turned in by Tim Carbon and Andrew Hanson.

On Saturday night the ABC Raceway will offer a half-price adult admission ticket as part of its annual “Jam the Stands” Night festivities, presented by Heartland Communications, WBSZ-FM and WJJH-FM, and the NAPA Auto Parts stores of Ashland & Washburn. The program will be part of the state-wide Kim Parsons Memorial Trophy Tour. Adult tickets are $10, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, followed by heat and feature action at 7. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

Reserved Seats, Spots for Red Clay Classic Now Available

July 20th, 2015

Ashland, WI,– The ABC Raceway has announced that reserved seating, camping sites and pit spots are now available for the 40th annual Red Clay Classic, to be held October 2-3, 2015, at the track.

The Northland’s traditional stock car racing season finale will once again feature WISSOTA-sanctioned Midwest Modifieds, Super Stocks and Modifieds, as well as the mighty WISSOTA Late Models, which will be making their only scheduled appearance of the season on the three-eighths-mile northern Wisconsin red-clay oval.

The weekend’s action will include heat races on Friday night, and last-chance qualifying races and the four big features on Saturday night. Upwards of 200 racers are expected to vie for a share of an overall purse once again exceeding $80,000.

In addition to the on-track action, there will be a golf tournament, special sales at the various downtown retail stores and other community happenings.

For a limited time, all pricing remains the same as in 2014. Single-day adult grandstand tickets are just $20 for Friday’s program and $25 for Saturday’s show, but fans can save by purchasing a two-day pass for just $40. Kids ages 6-12 are admitted for only $12 each night, while a kids’ two-day pass is just $20.

Limited reserved seating is available, with adult two-day passes going for $50, while kids ages 6-12 can get a two-day pass and reserved seat for just $30.

Also, limited reserved camping on the Raceway grounds is available for just $30 for the weekend. There is also camping available on the privately-owned property to the east of the track, but that is on a first-come, first-served basis.

Fans who purchased reserved seats or campsites for last year’s Red Clay Classic, or racers who purchased pit spots for the 2014 show, have until August 8 to renew their reservations. On August 9 all remaining seats, sites and spots will be made available to the general public.

To buy tickets or to save a seat or campsite, fans can call (715) 682-2672 Monday through Friday (evenings only), send an e-mail to tickets@abcraceway.com, or inquire at the grandstand ticket window during any of the remaining regular-season Saturday race nights at the track.

Reserved pit spots are priced at just $30 each. Pit parking is available by calling (715) 746-2390 or by e-mailing to tickets@abcraceway.com.

Information regarding access times to the grounds, pits and grandstands, start times for hot laps and racing, and the other activities will be released at a later time.

Prior to each night’s race program, “Z-93 Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com. The broadcast times will be announced at a later date.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Class of ’15 to be Inducted into ABC Raceway Hall of Fame on Saturday

July 17th, 2015

Ashland, WI — The ABC Raceway will take a moment this weekend to honor those who helped make it one of the premier dirt short-tracks in the Upper Midwest.  Induction of the nine members of the Class of 2015 into the Raceway’s Hall of Fame will take place during the track’s five-division stock car racing program on Saturday night, in a ceremony to be presented by the Safari Tavern of Ashland.

In addition, the drivers in the three WISSOTA-sanctioned divisions will be racing for the chance to qualify for the prestigious Afco Shocks Race of Champions event in September. The Hall of Fame, which welcomed its inaugural group in 2014, will include four successful racers and five generous families who have all donated greatly, in one form or another, to the success of the facility.

To be inducted under the Driver category are former Super Stock standout Dick Christman, long-time Modified star Steve Kieber, former Super Stock racer and car owner Don Koivisto, and Six-Cylinder ace Jule Wilcox. Under the Volunteers and Contributors category, the Class of ’15 will include the late Chuck & Lucy Anderson and their family, Bob & Geraldine Korpela, Walt & Diane Martens, Mike & Linda Sorenson and their family, and Lorraine and the late Jerry Zifko.

The inductees and their guests will be treated to a banquet dinner Saturday afternoon, then will be introduced to the fans on hand at the track during intermission of the race program. Later in the show, the winners of the WISSOTA Modified, Super Stock and Midwest Modified features will punch their tickets for a trip to Huron, SD, where they will have the chance to qualify for the exclusive and high-paying Race of Champions in their respective divisions. The race, to be held at the Dakota State Fair Speedway as part of the annual WISSOTA 100 in mid-September, is an invitation-only event, open to the winners of RoC qualifiers being held all summer at every one of the 50 WISSOTA Promoters Association-member race facilities.

The show will also include complete heat race and feature action for the track’s own Six-Cylinders and Pure Stocks. Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, followed by first heat race of the night at 7. Adult tickets are just $10 each, and kids ages 12 and under admitted free with a paid adult admission. “Z-93 Race Night” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, as well as stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

Eder Doubles Down with Mod, Mid-Mod Wins at ABC Raceway

July 13th, 2015

Ashland, WI, – Kevin Eder of Ashland grabbed two feature wins tonight at the ABC Raceway – including one that paid him $800.

Eder took advantage of a mechanical failure for Steve Stuart and held off a charging Joey Jensen for the “Modified Mayhem” win, presented by Lake Shore Cafe & Catering of Ashland. Earlier in the show he held off Ryan Adamzak and Tyler Luger for the win in the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds.

A field of 100 entries visited the award-winning northern Wisconsin red-clay oval for PolyDome Dirt Track Series racing action on a gorgeous 80-degree Saturday evening, and nearly every one of those drivers came out to visit with the capacity crowd on hand for the Little Caesar’s Pizza-sponsored “Meet the Drivers’ session held on the front straightaway prior to green-flag action.

Stuart set a new track single-lap record during group timed qualifying for the WISSOTA Modifieds, with a lap of 15.979 seconds – the first-ever sub-16-second lap turned at ABC in a “big Mod.” In fact, the drivers posting the five fastest times in qualifying were all under the previous track record, and a sixth was only one one-thousandth of a second over Stuart’s old mark.

The defending champ easily pulled away from the field in the early stages of the 25-lap WISSOTA Modified headliner, after a lap 1 incident that nearly put Eder into the front straightaway wall. After just five green-flag laps Stuart had a two-second lead on a great battle for second between Eder and Al Uotinen, and he extended that lead even further
during the nine-lap green-flag run.

The complexion of the race changed, however, when Steve Lavassuer’s car stalled near the turn 4 pit exit; as the caution flag was shown to the field, Stuart’s car mysteriously slowed and he coasted it into the pits, ending his dominant run.

This gave the lead to Eder for the restart and, after a lap 10 mishap involving Dustin Hudack and Jeff Spacek, he used a strong run around the high groove of the wide, fast race track to outrun Uotinen and the rest of the field. Jensen, who started on the last row of the 16-car grid, knifed his way into second with eight laps remaining, but he could get no closer to Eder than a few car-lengths back as he finished runner-up in Ashland for the second straight show.

Uotinen held on to third, while Neil Balduc survived a race-long battle with Destin Lorimor for fourth. Stuart, who also set the Northern Clearing fast lap of the race at 16.690 seconds, saw his points lead trimmed to just two, ahead of Eder and Uotinen.

The Mid-Mod feature started out fast and clean, with pole-starter Luger gaining the early advantage ahead of several dogfights for position. Eder, who had started on the outside of the third row, used a high-side move to get around Rob Weber for second after four laps, and then spent the next three laps cutting into Luger’s half-second cushion.

Two laps after Eder swept by Luger for the lead, Cody Carlson and Duane Dunbar came together in a grinding crash, and that sparked a series of yellow-flag stoppages over the next four laps that slowed the race’s exciting pace. Eder, however, held off challenges by Luger on each of the restarts, and then over the final half-dozen laps he fended off a determined Adamzak, who had moved by Tad Bretting into third after the final restart on lap 14. Eder held a lead of .38 seconds on Adamzak at the checkers, with Luger, Bretting and visiting Mark Kangas completing the top five.

Eder, who admitted in Victory Lane after the win that his car owner actually considered leaving the Mid-Mod home on this night, also collected the fast-lap bonus from that race with a time of 17.533 seconds. And as in the Mods, Eder pulled to within two points of leader Paul Suzik in the track’s Mid-Mod standings.

Perhaps the most thrilling feature of the night was in the WISSOTA Super Stocks, where Dave Flynn of Superior stole the win from Shane Kisling on the final lap, after a race-long, side-by-side battle. They started on the front row together – Flynn on the pole, Kisling on the outside – and that’s where they stayed for nearly the entire 20 laps.

The early circuits saw Kisling work around Flynn and edge ahead, with an impressive effort by Pat Beeksma putting him in third, but on lap 5 Flynn returned the favor, finding enough grip on the bottom groove to retake the lead. Two laps later, with Kisling charging back, Flynn used the slower Keith Corcilius as a pick to keep Kisling at bay.

Kisling recovered and pulled alongside Flynn again, and as the lead pair tried to sneak past the slower Spenser Sorenson they made heavy contact with one another – Flynn’s car bouncing up as it tagged the nose of Kisling’s ride – but both drivers surged on by.

Curt Myers’ spin shortly after that incident slowed the torrid pace, but it worked to Kisling’s advantage as he again swept on by on the high side with seven laps left. Kisling’s lead was a half-second just as the white flag was about to wave, but DJ Keeler’s spin forced a green-white-checkered dash. Flynn gained momentum coming off turn 2 on the
final lap to pull even with Kisling, and he made a strong drive off the bottom of the final corner to take the checkered flag by just 48 one-thousandths of a second – about a third of the length of his car.

Jeff Klopstein diced through the field to another impressive finish with his third-place run, while Scott Lawrence overtook Beeksma for fourth on the final lap. Kisling posted the fastest lap of the race with a tour in 17.005 seconds, while Lawrence became the division’s standings leader, with Klopstein and Randy Spacek trailing by just one point.

Hayward’s Dale Coddington survived a caution-filled Six-Cylinder feature to win for the second time this season here. Colton Vernon surprised the front-row combo of Ken Tyykila and Bubba Anderson to flash by for the initial lead, but a two-car spin deep in the field negated the move. When Anderson retired his ride to the pits, Vernon lined up alongside the veteran for the restart, but this time he barely edged ahead.

Contact between Tyykila and DeJay Mihalek during a four-wide race down the front straight behind Vernon on lap 3 caused Mihalek to spin, and shortly after the restart Coddington slipped past Vernon and into the lead. After another stoppage for debris on lap 5, Ron Hmielewski drove low on Vernon and stole second place away, with Tiffany Hudack following suit into third a lap later, before Tykkila’s car stalled on lap 8 to slow the action again.

Hudack challenged Hmielewski on the restart but spun after contact between the two, forcing the field to scatter behind them and sending Hmielewski to the end of the line for the next re-do. From there Coddington was able to outrun Hudack for the final four laps – interrupted one last time by a stalled Cole Vernon – for his second feature win of the season, solidifying him at the top of the standings, while picking up the fast-lap bonus (18.063 seconds) to boot. Hudack was only a couple car-lengths back in second, while Colten Vernon, a resurgent Hmielewski and Forrest Schultz completed the top five.

Tim Carlson of Superior returned to ABC’s Victory Lane for the first time in two seasons with his Pure Stock feature win. Justin Weinberger scooted away from Ryan Madsen for the early advantage, with Randy Conner following him into second. A three-car mess on lap 3 restacked the field, and Matt Deragon took advantage by slipping around Tim Carbon into third.

On lap 9 of the scheduled 15, Connor worked his way by Weinberger for the lead, and he held on despite an ill-handling race car while the field ran in tight formation behind him. Carlson, who was running fourth after a lap 10 restart, passed Carbon for third before Brandle Pupp’s stalled ride slowed the field, and then low road while Deragon went high-side, and the pair displaced Connor and began their own battle for the lead.

Carlson was scored as the leader when the yellow lights blinked on for Madsen’s spin, and he stayed there despite one more slowdown for Scott Lawrence’s spin, taking the win by a four-car margin over Lawrence, Conner and Deragon. Tim’s brother Chad Carlson was awarded fifth after Weinberger failed to visit the post-race scales and technical inspection area.

Deragon continues to lead the points in the division, ahead of Randy Graham, who finished sixth.

Several drivers pooled their resources and donated over a dozen bikes and bike helmets as prizes for young fans on this night. Involved in the giveaway were Super Stock drivers Shawn McFadden, Jr, Jeff Klopstein and Nick Oreskovich, Mid-Mod driver Tyler Luger, Aaron Mashlan from the Six-Cylinders, and Paul Niznik, who runs both a “big Mod” and a Mid-Mod. Also, Mid-Mod racers Cy Hoaglan donated t-shirts as prizes.

On Saturday night the ABC Raceway will induct its second group into its Hall of Fame as part of a full five-division race program to be presented by the Safari Tavern of Ashland. In addition, the WISSOTA-sanctioned divisions will compete for their chance to qualify for the Afco Shocks Race of Champions, to be held during the WISSOTA 100 in Huron, SD, in mid-September. Adult tickets are $10, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, followed by heat and feature action. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

Mission Accomplished: Myers Sweeps FastLane Super Stock Series with ABC Win

June 30th, 2015

Ashland, WI,- As confident as he was going into the WISSOTA Super Stock feature at the ABC Raceway, even Curt Myers couldn’t believe what he had just accomplished.

Myers completed a clean sweep with heat and feature wins at all three participating tracks of the FastLane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Series, capping off the Series championship with another dominant performance on the award-winning three-eighths-mile red-clay oval just south of Ashland on Saturday night. And as he climbed through the driver’s-side window of his racer in ABC’s victory lane, he sat on the door sill, buried his head in his folded arms on the roof of the car, and took a long moment to compose himself. After all, it’s not often that a Super Stock driver earns a $3,500 payday.

The Series finale was but one highlight of a 94-car, 19-race WISSOTA PolyDome Dirt Track Series program on a gorgeous 80-degree evening in northern Wisconsin. Another point worth noting was the never-failing generosity of the racing family. Nearly $2,000 was raised from “split the pot” ticket sales and a matching donation by the race night’s co-sponsor, Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland, for the Ashland-Bayfield County chapter of the American Cancer Society’s “Relay for Life” fundraising program. Myers, the perennial national championship contender from Cameron, stuck with a tried-and-true formula for winning features during the Series’ first two stops at the Superior and Proctor (MN) tracks last weekend: get out front quickly and pull away. It was helpful that he started on the front row, alongside polesitter Scott Lawrence, and he used a middle-groove sweep around Lawrence to gain the advantage coming out of turn 2 for the first time. From that point on, the only way to catch Myers was under the yellow flag. On lap 2 Marcus Dunbar’s spinning car collected at least a half-dozen others to stop the 25-lap A-main, but Myers built a 1.2-second lead within just three laps after the restart, while Lawrence worked overtime to fend off stiff challenges from Kevin Burdick and Andy Davey. Myers extended his lead to over four seconds – nearly a full straightaway – when Spencer Sorenson’s spin on lap 11 brought the field back to the leader’s rear bumper.

Jeff Klopstein moved by Burdick to take fourth on the lap 11 restart, and Davey worked hard to overtake Lawrence for second a couple of laps later. On lap 15 Klopstein gained third, and in four more laps the Super Stock rookie was threatening to take second from Davey, with Myers a full 2.5 seconds ahead. A lap after Klopstein displaced Davey, the caution lights blinked on again for a two-car spin with five laps remaining. Although Klopstein proved to have a strong car, Myers was still able to pull away to a 1.5-second final margin of victory for his 19th overall feature win of the 2015 season. Davey, Lawrence and Randy Spacek completed the top five.

Myers earned a combined $1,700 for the three feature wins, another $1,600 for the Series’ points championship, and a $1,200 bonus for the three-feature sweep. In addition, he posted the fastest timed lap of the race at 17.488 seconds, earning that bonus from Northern Clearing as well. Davey scored second place in the final Series points standings, and Lawrence moved up to third. Shane Kisling was awarded the “Hard Charger” bonus for gaining the most positions from his starting spot in Saturday’s feature, and Cory Casari earned the cumulative “Hard Charger” bonus for positions gained in all three features combined. “This Series could not have been even attempted without the generosity of some very special sponsors,” Series organizer and Proctor Speedway president Dennis McCauley said prior to the race program. Those sponsors included FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating; Lulich Implement; Northern Clearing; White River Ag Products; Total Recreation; Arrowhead Printing; Duluth/Superior Trophy; Rick Gondik Law Office; Village Lanes; Como Oil & Propane; the NAPA Auto Parts stores of Duluth, Superior and Ashland; Halvor Lines; Dennis & Cathy Pattee; Tim’s Automotive; Stone Lake Oil and Sunoco; Northern Fitness Solutions; and the Kom-On-Inn Bar.

Luger Trucking and iFan Sports Network made contributions on Saturday to boost the Series’ overall Hard Charger bonus.

Although his was the first of the main events on the program, Ashland’s Forrest Schultz took a page from Myers’ playbook and ran off to his first career feature win in the Six-Cylinder 15-lapper. Schultz, starting outside on the front row, swept around pole-starter Bubba Anderson and pulled away to a strong advantage early. It took Tyler Hudack a couple extra laps to get by Anderson for second, but by that time Schultz’s lead was significant. Dale Coddington weaved his way from a fourth-row start to gain third by lap 6, but the lead pair were too far away to catch. And with
the race running without a yellow-flag slowdown, Schultz was too strong in the open field for anyone to challenge him.

There was one close call just past mid-race, when backmarker Cole Vernon bobbled coming off the high side of turn 4 and nearly chopped down in front of Schultz. The little bit of door-rubbing slowed Schultz enough for Hudack to draw to his rear bumper, but Schultz regained his momentum, rebuilt his lead, and held a nearly-full-second edge at the final stripe. Coddington trailed at a distance in third, ahead of Ron Hmielewski and Tiffany Hudack.

Ashland’s Steve Stuart, the defending WISSOTA Modified track champion, also got out front early and took advantage of a non-stop race to grab the 20-lap feature in that division. Stuart, who had to come from a third-row starting spot, used a split-the-difference move in traffic coming out of the first turn to move into the top three, behind leader Scott Hudack and polestarter Kevin Eder.

On lap 2 Stuart made two more impressive passes – an outside move around Eder, and then an inside dive against Hudack – to gain a lead that he would quickly extend to nearly two full seconds four laps later. Visiting Joey Jensen weaved his way up from the fourth row to slip past Eder into second on lap 9, but over the course of the remaining laps he could not cut into Stuart’s lead. Bill Byholm, who worked past Eder during the second half of the run, came home in third, and Al Uotinen earned fifth-place money.

The WISSOTA Midwest Modified 20-lap feature was underscored by a race-long battle for the lead between several combinations of cars, with eventual winner Ryan Adamzak involved throughout. In the only feature significantly marred by cautions, Adamzak muscled his way below Paul Niznik for the initial lead and stayed there despite several challenges, starting just two laps in by Tanner Hicks. But after a lap 3 restart for Mike Jacques’ spin, Hicks was overtaken by Niznik, who then threatened to take over the lead. After another restart, this time on lap 8 for Robert Hyde’s spin of Clay Passuello, Hicks again charged by Niznik, with Paul Suzik following him to third. But Niznik regrouped and worked past both drivers within the next circuit, and coming off turn 4 to complete lap 11 Niznik finally had a clean shot to drive past Adamzak for the lead. But a seven-car pile-up behind them negated the pass and took out some strong top-ten runners in the process. Suzik got the better of Niznik for second on the restart, but Adamzak held on over the final nine laps, which clicked off without further delay, and he held a half-second advantage on Suzik under the checkers. Niznik followed at a distance, ahead of Hicks and visiting Canadian guest David Simpson. Matt Deragon of Ashland slipped past Randy Conner with just four laps to go and took his second Pure Stock feature win here this summer. Conner started on the pole and established a good early lead ahead of a four-car battle for second.

Deragon, who started sixth, split the gap between Tim Carbon and Randy Graham to take third, then fought with Andrew Hanson for second for a good three laps before capturing that position.

It took two more laps before Deragon could overtake Conner, but once out front the defending track champ pulled away to a commanding win. Carbon, Hanson and Graham completed the top five.

Others earning fast-lap bonuses included Stuart in the Mods (17.100 seconds), Hicks in the Mid-Mods (17.588), and Tyler Hudack in the Sixes (18.121).

The ABC Raceway will take a break from racing on July 4, but it will return to action on Saturday, July 11, with its “Modified Mayhem” special event, to be presented by Lake Shore Cafe & Catering of Ashland. In addition, the track will hold its Kids’ Meet the Drivers Night festivities, to be presented by Little Caesar’s Pizza of Ashland, on the same night.

Adult tickets are $10, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, followed by heat and feature action. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

Super Stock Special, Cancer Fundraiser at ABC Raceway on Saturday

June 26th, 2015

Ashland, WI — The ABC Raceway will host two big events on Saturday as it continues to overhaul its 2015 stock car racing season schedule.

Set for this date on the original slate, the award-winning red-clay oval south of Ashland will hold its annual “Cure for Cancer” fundraiser for the American Cancer Society, with the help of Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland. Last summer race fans dug deep and contributed nearly $2,800 towards the Ashland-Bayfield County chapter’s “Relay for Life” fundraising effort. Many members of the area’s “Relay for Life” program are expected to be on hand to collect donations for the worthy cause.

In addition, what was to be Race 2 of the three-race, three-track FastLane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Series last Saturday night was called off due to excessively wet track conditions. So track officials from Superior’s AmsOil Speedway and the Proctor (MN) Speedway agreed that ABC host the Series finale tonight. The Series, which offers a total purse and points fund of over $23,000, has completed two legs, with both features won by Curt Myers of Cameron. With a victory at Ashland on Saturday, Myers will have taken home $1,700 in first-place checks and will earn an additional $1,200 bonus for having swept the main events at all three participating tracks, plus he should have the inside track for the Series’ $1,600 championship check.

If betting were allowed, Myers could very well be the odds-on favorite. In the ABC Raceway’s only program completed this season, the former two-time Red Clay Classic champion worked his way through traffic quickly and collected his 20th career feature win in Ashland. In addition, Myers is already flirting with 20 feature wins this summer, giving him a strong boost to the top of the WISSOTA national Super Stock standings. Besides the $600 feature winner’s check, drivers competing in the Northland Super Stock Series will have several other chances to make a few extra dollars. The top ten in the final Series standings will take home healthy points-fund checks, and any driver competing in all three Series races but not finishing in the top-ten will a receive “Participant Non-Qualifier Bonus,” which has recently been increased to $150. Also, the driver who gains the most positions from his starting spot during Saturday’s feature will earn a $100 “Hard Charger” bonus. Jeff Klopstein of Tomahawk earned the bonus with his strong run at Superior on June 19, and Spencer Sorenson of Duluth, MN, gained the extra cash after the June 21 show in Proctor.

Finally, the driver who cumulatively gains the most positions with his efforts in all three features will earn an additional bonus of $100. Heading into Saturday’s program at ABC, the “Series Hard Charger” is Montreal’s Cory Casari.

“This Series could not have been even attempted without the generosity of some very special sponsors,” Series organizer and Proctor (MN) Speedway president Dennis McCauley said earlier this week. Those sponsors included FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating; Lulich Implement; Northern Clearing; White River Ag Products; Total Recreation; Arrowhead Printing; Duluth/Superior Trophy; Rick Gondik Law Office; Village Lanes; Como Oil & Propane; the NAPA Auto Parts stores of Duluth, Superior and Ashland; Halvor Lines; Dennis & Cathy Pattee; Tim’s Automotive; Stone Lake Oil and Sunoco; Northern Fitness Solutions; and the Kom-On-Inn Bar.

The program will include complete heat race and feature action in all five of the Raceway’s regular weekly divisions, including the WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds and Midwest Modifieds as well as the Supers, plus the track’s own Six-Cylinders and Pure Stocks.

Fans who attended the rain-shortened racing program at Ashland on June 6 and did not use their admission wristbands to gain entry into the June 13 show are encouraged to bring them tonight, as they will still be honored for admission to this Saturday’s program only.

Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, and the first green flag of the season is scheduled to be thrown at 7. Adult tickets are just $10 each, and kids ages 12 and under admitted free with a paid adult admission. “Z-93 Race Night” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

Rain Washes Out Sprints at ABC; Super Stock Special Reset for June 27

June 22nd, 2015

Ashland, WI, June 20 – Heavy overnight rains took their toll on the ABC Raceway’s red-clay surface, forcing track officials to cancel Saturday’s race program.

The fourth cancellation of the 2015 season wiped out the season’s lone visit by the traveling Interstate Racing Association’s 410 “outlaw” winged sprint cars, which was to be presented by the NAPA Auto Parts stores of Ashland and Washburn.

The night’s other main attraction – the second leg of the three-track, three-night FastLane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Series – has now been rescheduled as part of the track’s June 27 race program, which will also include the Raceway’s annual “Cure for Cancer” fundraiser for the American Cancer Society, to be presented by Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland.

Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, and the first race gets underway at 7. Adult tickets are just $10 each, and kids ages 12 and under admitted free with a paid adult admission. Fans who still have their admission wristbands from the rain-shortened June 6 program at ABC can use them for admission to the June 27 show. “Z-93 Race Night” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990.

Sprints, Supers to Headline Big Show at ABC on Saturday

June 20th, 2015

Ashland, WI — Never mind that it’s already mid-June and the ABC Raceway has completed only one race program. It’s already time to host one of the biggest shows on its 2015 stock car racing schedule.

For the fifth straight season, the Interstate Racing Association’s winged sprint cars will roar around the award-winning three-eighths-mile red-clay oval, in a program presented by the NAPA Auto Parts stores of Ashland and Washburn.

If that’s not enough, big money will be on the line for the WISSOTA Super Stocks when they compete in race number two of the three-night, three-track FastLane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Series.

The IRA, which is based in northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin but travels throughout the Midwest, hopes to bring as many as 20 of the 900-horsepower, 1,400-lb winged monsters up north. These machines have easily posted average lap times of 14 seconds or less around Ashland’s red-clay oval, equating to 90-100 mph.

“(ABC) is a great place for our guys to race,” said IRA Series president Steve Sinclair recently. “It’s not a horsepower track – it’s a finesse track. It’s a chance for our guys to show just how talented they really are with a sprint car.”

Bill Balog of Brookfield, WI, holds the ABC Raceway record for a single lap with a time of 12.382 seconds, or 109.029 mph. By comparison, Curt Myers of Cameron posted a new track single-lap time for Super Stocks during last Saturday’s feature win at 16.817 seconds, or 80.276 mph.

Having won features in all three of the IRA’s previous shows at ABC (rains washed out the 2013 show), Balog is the seven-time defending champion of the Series and the IRA’s all-time feature wins leader. However, Balog has cut back on his schedule with the tour – although one would hardly know it. Balog has raced in only five of the Series’ seven completed shows to date this season – and won features in the first four. He currently sits eighth in Series points.

The IRA points leader is Bill Rose of Plainfield, IN, by a scant two points over Ben Schmidt of Howards Grove, WI. Schmidt is one of three drivers on the tour with one A-Main win each, along with Jeremy Schultz of Beaver Dam and Blake Nimee of Oswego, IL. Nimee won in the Series’ most recent stop, at Wilmot, WI, on June 6.

These two very different types of racing cars sharing the spotlight on Ashland’s oval is nothing new. But for the Super Stocks, this weekend’s series presents a great opportunity for this highly competitive class to race for some pretty significant money.

After the opening round of the FastLane Northland Series on Friday night at the AmsOil Speedway in Superior, the 25-lap feature on Saturday night at ABC will pay $600 to the winner, and a minimum of $80 to each qualifying starter, out of a feature purse of nearly $4,200. In addition, points will be tallied after the final round, to be held on Sunday at Proctor (MN) Speedway, to determine the Series champion, who will be in line for a check of over $1,400.

Every driver that competes in all three events over the weekend will receive a $100 bonus. And if a single driver happens to capture all three feature race wins, he or she will receive an additional $1,200 bonus. That adds up to a total possible windfall of over $3,500 for the weekend, out of a combined $23,000 in purse and points fund.

WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds and the Raceway’s own Six-Cylinders will also compete in a full program of qualifying heats and feature races.

Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, followed by timed qualifying for the IRA sprints. The first green flag of the night is scheduled to be thrown at about 7. Adult tickets are $20 each, kids ages 6-12 get in for $5, and little fans ages 5 and under will be admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. “Z-93 Race Night” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For race day information call (715) 682-4990.

Sprints Cover the State the Open Wheeled Action This Weekend

June 19th, 2015

Appleton, WI – The teams of the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints are going to extremes this weekend! Taking the thrill of 900 horsepower winged 410 sprint action on the road, the series will reach fans in the far edges of the state of Wisconsin. Beginning on Saturday Night, the series will make it’s annual appearance at the ABC Raceway in Ashland, Wisconsin.

The far northern track will see nearly two dozen teams make the trek flying around the three-eighths-mile red-clay oval at triple-digit speeds. Last season two-time series champ Travis Whitney seemed to have the race in hand until a late race caution, and mechanical misfortune dropped him from the contest placing seven-time IRA kingpin Bill Balog out front. Balog held on to earn the victory, which was his third straight at the track. Scotty Thiel made a final turn pass on Scott Uttech to finish second, with Uttech earning his strongest finish last season in third. All three podium finishers are expected to be in action this coming weekend. Along with the IRA sprints, the program will include night number two of the three-night, three-track FastLane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Series, with drivers in that class racing for a $600 feature winner’s check. Also included in the program Saturday will be the WISSOTA Midwest Mods. Adult tickets are $20, fans ages 6-12 can get in for $5, and kids ages 5 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, followed by timed qualifying for the IRA sprints, then heat and feature action. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, .

After the ABC Raceway event, teams will pack up, and hustle south down to the other end of the state to present their second show of the season at Angell Park Speedway located in Sun Prairie, WI. In the most recent IRA event held just three weeks ago, Balog had a record setting night winning not only the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint main event, but taking home his first career A-main victory on Midget action. Mike Reinke, and Bill Rose chased Balog to the finish. 2014 Knoxville Raceway champion Ian Madsen was in contention for the victory until a flattened a right rear tire slowed his pace with two laps to go, eventually placing sixth in the final rundown. On that evening Rose also established a new track qualifying mark with a lap of 12.334 seconds. Heading into the weekend Rose holds a two-point lead over Ben Schmidt in the early points chase with Scott Neitzel, Jeremy Schultz and Phillip Mock. Blake Nimee who scored his first career IRA A-main win in the series most recent appearance at Wilmot Raceway two weeks ago heads into the show sixth in points whileScotty Thiel, Balog, Russel Borland, and rookie Kyle Marten rounding out the early season top ten. Fans attending the show at Angell Park Speedway will see Badger Midgets, Badger Micros, and Wisconsin Legends. Front gates open at 4:30pm, Hot Laps at 6:00pm with racing following Hot Laps. Front Gates Open at 4:30pm.

General Admission: $20.00 ; Students 12 to 18: $15.00 ; Kids Under 12: FREE To reach the track, take the Highway 19 exit East off of Highway 151. Head through the town of Sun Prairie. On the east side of town take County Trunk N (Grove Street) south one block to Miller Drive. Turn onto Miller Drive and you will see the raceway.Additional information can be found at www.angellparkspeedway.com For more information on the IRA Outlaw Sprints check out the tour website at www.irasprints.com or by logging onto the series Facebook page at www.facebook.com/irasprints the series is also on twitter at #IRA_sprints. The IRA Sprints are presented by its long time supporting series partners. The series support is led by title sponsor Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts & Service Centers, and associate series partners Osborn & Son Trucking, TW Metals, Hoosier Tire, Cedar Creek Motorsports, Cummins Onan, and Carriage Auto Body.

2015 Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints Upcoming Events:
6/20/2015 ABC Raceway – Ashland, WI
6/21/2015 Angell Park Speedway – Sun Prairie, WI
7/3/2015 Manitowoc County Expo –Manitowoc, WI
7/10/2015 Dodge County Fairgrounds – Beaver Dam, WI
7/18/2015 Eagle Valley Speedway – Jim Falls, WI

Aho, Adams are First-Time Winners in ABC Opener

June 16th, 2015

Ashland, WI — Jesse Aho of Toivola, MI, held off determined challenges from Paul Suzik and Michael Truscott for a hard-earned first-ever career feature win in the Outlaw Wraps & Apparel Midwest Mod Spring Classic at the ABC Raceway on Saturday night.

Aho was one of two very successful drivers who were first-time winners at the Ashland red-clay oval – the other being Kevin Adams of Cameron – as the track finally kicked off its 2015 PolyDome Dirt Track Series stock car racing season despite a nearly hour-long delay for a heavy mist just after hot laps and timed qualifying for the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds was completed.

The mist actually worked in the Raceway’s favor, as that and another diligent job by the track-prep crew resulted in a sticky, lightning-fast racing surface.

Aho, a multi-time track champion at Eagle River Speedway, started the spotlighted 25-lap Mid-Mod feature behind the front-row tandem of Suzik and Paul Niznik, who battled door-to-door right from the green before a two-car spin reset the grid. Suzik was penalized a row for jumping the initial start, putting Aho on the pole, and Niznik edged ahead for the early lead, with Suzik nosing up to second.

A lap after a Shawn Rivord spin on lap 3, Suzik made an inside move stick to swipe the lead away, and Aho followed him to second, with fourth-row-starting Truscott moving up to fourth. Suzik had a substantial 1.67-second lead on the field with nine laps in, and Truscott worked his way past Niznik for third two circuits later, but the pace was slowed when fifth-place Tyler Luger slid across the slippery front-straight grass on lap 14.

Two laps after the restart Truscott took to the high groove to challenge for the lead, but Aho snuck to the inside and laid claim to the spot first, where he stayed for the rest of the run, despite four more restarts that kept Suzik and Truscott right on his rear bumper. Niznik’s great run went away when he got loose and collected a handful of other cars running in the top ten with three laps remaining to bring out the final yellow flag of the race, and Aho held on from there for the historic win.

Suzik outran a high-flying Truscott for second, while Kevin Eder took advantage of Niznik’s error to score a fourth-place run ahead of a strong-finishing Mickey Nosser, who started the race from the 14th position.

Adams, the reigning and three-time WISSOTA Modified national champion and winner of over 100 features at tracks in Rice Lake and Menomonie, had always seemed to have trouble adjusting to and succeeding on Ashland’s red clay, but on Saturday he finally found his way to Victory Lane. Adams started mid-pack – seventh out of a field of 13 – but went to the top groove early and picked his way to fourth in just four short laps, then to second with a sweep around front-row starter Steve Lavasseur soon after.

Jeff Spacek had set the early pace with a quick move around Lavasseur and pole-starter Al Uotinen at the start, but when Adams and defending track champ Steve Stuart ganged up on him for an inside-outside pass on lap 8, the six-time track champ quickly found himself playing catch-up.

Adams was running away with the lead and had built his advantage to nearly a second-and-a-half when the race’s lone yellow flag was waived on lap 14, as Dustin Hudack parked his fifth-place-running car on the inside edge of turn 4. Adams didn’t gain as much of an edge over the final half-dozen laps, as Spacek, taking advantage of the restart, stole second from Stuart and stayed within shouting distance of the leader. Still, Adams’ margin at the checkers was three-quarters of a second, with Uotinen and Lavasseur not far back in the top five.

Curt Myers’ return to the ABC Raceway was a successful one, as he dominated the WISSOTA Super Stock action in both his heat and the division’s 20-lap feature. Myers started outside on row 4 but was quickly in the mix as 11-time defending track champ Scott Lawrence eventually edged ahead of Ken Truscott after three side-by-side laps for the early lead.

Myers cleared Truscott for second later in lap 3 and then tracked down Lawrence over the next three laps before working low to get by for the lead. A stoppage for Shane Kisling’s stalled ride on the next circuit started a case of “yellow fever,” with multiple caution-flag incidences slowing the pace. Despite the delays, however, Myers proved that he would not be denied as he pulled away with every restart.

The surprise performer of the run was not the veteran from Cameron, but rather the rookie from Marenisco, MI – Marcus Dunbar – who came from the seventh starting spot, picked off positions quickly to pull into fourth by lap 6, and then bravely challenged the more experienced drivers running at the front of the field. Dunbar worked an inside move to take third from Truscott, then slipped past Lawrence for second at mid-race, and with the caution flags keeping Myers within range, he did his best to pester the leader on each of the two remaining restarts over the back half of the run.

Myers did eventually pull away to a 1.68-second advantage at the finish, while Randy Spacek displaced Dunbar with four laps to go to claim second. Lawrence and Super Stock rookie Jeff Klopstein completed the top five.

Dale Coddington dominated the Six-Cylinder 15-lap main event, pulling away to a five-second lead on the field over the first five laps. The former track champ from Hayward took full advantage of his pole-position starting spot and ran away from Brendon Ottman and Aaron Mashlan.

As Mashlan got by Ottman for second on lap 3, Tyler Hudack followed him into third, and on the next lap Hudack replaced Mashlan as the runner-up. Then Hudack’s sister, 2014 track champ Tiffany Hudack, claimed third from Mashlan and began to pressure her brother for second.

It looked like the Hudack siblings had a chance to give Coddington a run for the win when, on lap 5, DeJay Mihalek spun Adam Traaholt to bring out the caution flag. But instead of challenging the leader, Tyler and Tiffany battled with each other side by side for over a lap, allowing Coddington to pull away to another healthy lead.

Tiffany finally cleared Tyler for second on lap 8, and Tyler pulled his car into the infield grass a lap later with mechanical woes, but Coddington was well on his way to a 2.85-second margin at the final stripe. Colton Vernon held on to a solid third-place run ahead of Mashlan and Mihalek.

Matt Deragon proved that he was out to defend his 2015 Pure Stock title at ABC with a strong run in the 12-lap Pure Stock finale. Deragon followed rookie Justin Weinberger past pole-starter Andrew Hanson to take second. Then, after Hanson’s car stalled to bring about the race’s only delay, Deragon chased the grandson of two-time ABC Raceway champ Ron Weinberger for a couple of laps before working his way by for the lead.

The junior Weinberger wasn’t about to give up so easily and threatened on several occasions to take the lead back from the defending champ, but over the closing laps Deragon was just too strong and pulled away to a decisive win. Tim Carlson, Randy Graham and Randy Conner were a distance back in completing the top five.

Myers set a new track record (16.817 seconds) during his run to the win in the Super Stock feature and collected a fast-lap bonus from Northern Clearing. Others awarded such bonuses were Stuart in the Mods (16.354 seconds), Truscott in the Mid-Mods (16.974), and Coddington in the Sixes (18.071).

The program at the ABC Raceway on this coming Saturday night will be very special, as the Interstate Racing Association’s winged sprints will be in town for their annual visit. As many as 20 of the 900-horsepower racers will be flying around the three-eighths-mile red-clay oval at triple-digit speeds.

Along with the sprints, the program will include night number two of the three-night, three-track FastLane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Series, with drivers in that class racing for a $600 feature winner’s check and a shot at a share of over $23,000 in overall purse and points fund being offered by the Ashland, Superior, and Proctor, MN, tracks over that weekend. Also included in the program Saturday will be the WISSOTA Midwest Mods.

Adult tickets are $20, fans ages 6-12 can get in for $5, and kids ages 5 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, followed by timed qualifying for the IRA sprints, then heat and feature action. “Z-93 Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, .

ABC to Open with Mid-Mod Special Saturday

June 13th, 2015

Ashland, WI — With a favorable forecast and a racing surface that is finally cooperating, the staff of ABC Raceway hopes to start its 2015 stock car racing season on Saturday with on latest opening-night date in its 51-year history.

Outlaw Graphics of Ashland will present the “Midwest Mod Spring Classic,” the first of the scheduled special nights of racing for the Raceway’s five regular weekly-competing divisions, and one of two special shows for the track’s newest WISSOTA-sanctioned division. The “Spring Classic” will offer an enhanced feature purse to tempt a field of drivers that has consistently shown up in the strongest numbers since being added as part of the regular Saturday night fare in Ashland in 2008.

WISSOTA Modifieds and Super Stocks and the track’s own Six-Cylinders and Pure Stocks will also perform on the three-eighths-mile red-clay oval south of town with a complete slate of qualifying heats and feature races.

Despite questions about the readiness of the race track and gloomy weather closing in quickly last Saturday night, a strong field of 88 racers came to play, but the program was washed out early by the incoming rains.

Fans who attended the racing program at Ashland on June 6 are encouraged to bring their admission wristbands from that night’s show, as they will be honored for admission to this Saturday’s program.

Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, and the first green flag of the season is scheduled to be thrown at 7. Adult tickets are just $10 each, and kids ages 12 and under admitted free with a paid adult admission. “Z-93 Race Night” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

ABC Raceway Announces 2015 HoF Inductees

June 10th, 2015

Ashland, WI,– Prior to the cancellation of Saturday night’s racing program, the ABC Raceway announced its Class of 2015 inductees for its Hall of Fame.

The Raceway’s second group of inductees will include four retired drivers who made their mark at the northern Wisconsin dirt track, and five families who contributed enormously to the success of the facility.

Those to be inducted under the Driver category include former Super Stock standout Dick Christman, long-time Modified star Steve Kieber, former Super Stock racer and car owner Don Koivisto, and Six-Cylinder ace Jule Wilcox.

Under the Volunteers and Contributors category, the Class of ’15 will include Chuck & Lucy Anderson and their family, Bob & Geraldine Korpela, Walt & Diane Martens, Mike & Linda Sorenson and their family, and Jerry & Lorraine Zifko.

The ceremonies for this year’s inductees will take place as part of the July 18 race program at the track.

Skies Open, Rain Shuts Down ABC Raceway Opener Again

June 9th, 2015

Ashland, WI,– It was rain from the skies, not the dirt on the ground, that forced officials at the ABC Raceway to again cancel their 2015 stock car racing season opener on Saturday night.

The program, to have been jointly presented by the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce and the Northern State Bank, was wiped out when a huge storm front moved in and dumped rain on a track that the Raceway’s crews worked overtime on to prepare during the previous week.

Fans will now have to wait for Saturday, June 13, for the start of the season at the award-winning three-eighths-mile red clay oval. The WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds will take center stage for their “Mid-Mod Madness” event, to be presented by Outlaw Graphics of Ashland and Northern Wisconsin Fence of Phillips. The full program will include the WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds and Super Stocks and the track’s own Six-Cylinders and Pure Stocks for heat and feature action.

Hot laps will begin at 6:15 pm, and the first green flag of the season is scheduled to be thrown at 7. Adult tickets are just $10 each, and kids ages 12 and under admitted free with a paid adult admission. “Z-93 Race Night” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Third Time’s A Charm? ABC to Try to Open Saturday

June 5th, 2015

Ashland, WI — For the second time in the past three years, the ABC Raceway will start its stock car racing season in June.

This Saturday night, the former WISSOTA Track of the Year and ARPY Regional Track of the Year award-winning facility hopes to host a full program of WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds, as well as the track’s own Six-Cylinders and Pure Stocks, on its three-eights-mile red-clay oval south of Ashland.

The Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce and the Northern State Bank will be the presenting sponsors for the season-opening show, which has been postponed twice due to a racing surface that has not responded well to a weeks-long effort to prepare it for the 2015 season.

“Everyone has been anxious to get this season underway,” stated Raceway president Eric Erickson recently. “People here have been working very hard to get the track ready, and we think that once we get this season going we’ll have a great race track and a fun season for the drivers and the fans.”

Hometown drivers Steve Stuart (Mods), Tiffany Hudack (Sixes) and Matt Deragon (Pure Stocks) will be back to defend their 2014 titles, while Superior’s Scott Lawrence is expected to try to extend his track record of 11 straight Super Stock points titles and 14 championships overall at Ashland.

It will be interesting to see if defending ABC Mid-Mod track champ Mike Truscott of Chippewa Falls returns to race here on a full-time basis, as he has had a strong start to his 2015 campaign while competing at several area tracks.

Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, and the first green flag of the season is scheduled to be thrown at 7. Adult tickets are just $10 each, and kids ages 12 and under admitted free with a paid adult admission. “Z-93 Race Night” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

ABC Raceway Cancels Opener Again

May 31st, 2015

Ashland, WI,- Despite a favorable forecast, the recent wet weather and uncooperative track conditions forced officials at the ABC Raceway to again cancel their efforts to kick off the 2015 stock car racing season this past Saturday night.

The program, to have been jointly presented by the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce and the Northern State Bank and to have offered all active and veteran military personnel free admission, will now be rescheduled for later in the season.

The Raceway will again try to open up the season on Saturday, June 6, with its annual Kids’ “Meet the Drivers” Night, presented by Little Caesar’s Pizza of Ashland. The program will feature WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds, as well as the track’s own Six-Cylinders and Pure Stocks, in heat and feature action.

Hot laps will begin at 6:15 pm, and the first green flag of the season is scheduled to be thrown at 7. Adult tickets are just $10 each, and kids ages 12 and under admitted free with a paid adult admission. “Z-93 Race Night” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Military Personnel Welcome to ABC Raceway Opener on Saturday

May 30th, 2015

Ashland, WI — The ABC Raceway will again attempt to start its 2015 stock car racing season on Saturday night with by honoring America’s brave military personnel.

In a program to be presented by the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce and the Northern State Bank, the Raceway will offer all military personnel free admission when they present their branch’s identification at the ticket window. The program will feature WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds, as well as the track’s own Six-Cylinders and Pure Stocks, in heat and feature action.

Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, and the first green flag of the season is scheduled to be thrown at 7. Adult tickets are just $10 each, and kids ages 12 and under admitted free with a paid adult admission. “Z-93 Race Night” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Track Conditions Not Favorable; ABC Raceway Opener Cancelled

May 23rd, 2015

Ashland, WI — Despite weeks of effort and hundreds of man-hours of track preparation, the racing surface of the ABC Raceway has not cooperated and will not be ready for the scheduled 2015 season opener, forcing the Raceway staff to cancel this Saturday’s event.

Over 900 yards of fresh red clay were added to and worked into the track surface within a week after last September’s Red Clay Classic. However, the wet spring thus far has not helped bring all of the frost out from under the track, resulting in a very soft surface that has not hardened despite taking a pounding from several hundred laps turned with dozers and other heavy equipment.

The staff of the ABC Raceway will attempt to kick off its 2015 stock car racing season on Saturday, May 30, with a full night of exciting stock-car racing action with all five classes – WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds, plus the track’s own Pure Stocks and Six-Cylinders – presented by the Northern State Bank. In addition, the track will honor those who have served or are currently serving our nation with a salute to our Armed Forces, presented by the Ashland Chamber of Commerce.

Hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, and the first green flag of the night is scheduled to be thrown at 7. Adult tickets are just $10 each, and kids ages 12 and under are welcome for free with a paid adult admission. “Z-93 Race Night” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

’15 Racing Season Begins Saturday at ABC

May 21st, 2015

Ashland, WI — The ABC Raceway will kick off its 2015 stock car racing season with the first of 14 scheduled Saturday nights of regular-season action on May 23, to be presented by the Northern State Bank.

The popular racing venue located just south of Ashland will once again be home to WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Mods, as well as the track’s own Six-Cylinders and Pure Stocks, for exciting heat-race and feature action on the semi-banked three-eighths-mile red-clay oval.

Over 900 yards of new clay have been added to the racing surface since last year’s season-finale Red Clay Classic. Track crews have spent the past two months working the clay into the existing base and reshaping the track in an effort to improve the racing “groove” and prepare another very competitive surface.

Improvements to on-track safety have also been key targets for the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association to concentrate on for the upcoming season, with the addition of safety lighting for the drivers and protective gear for the on-track workers.

For the drivers, the Raceway has been working on modifications to the season-long points fund with the intention of offering more post-season earnings to more drivers. And the new pavilion and plans to enhance the concession stand’s menu offerings – as well as a concerted effort to run a fast-paced, action-packed race program – will help make the fan experience more enjoyable.

Ashland’s Steve Stuart, Tiffany Hudack and Matt Deragon are all expected to return to action this summer in the hopes of defending their respective Modified, Six-Cylinder and Pure Stock titles of 2014. Also returning will be Scott Lawrence of Superior, who will try to extend his incredible string of consecutive Super Stock points championships at ABC to 12.

Whether Mike Truscott of Chippewa Falls returns to race full-time in Ashland in defense of his 2014 Mid-Mod crown this coming summer is unclear, which could leave the door open for a number of strong contenders to take that title.

Opening-night hot laps begin at 6:15 pm, and the first green flag of the season is scheduled to be thrown at 7. Adult tickets are still just $10 each, and kids ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult.

“Race Night” will return as the Northland’s only live pre-race radio program Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

FastLane Super Stock Series Points Fund Gets Boost

May 15th, 2015

Ashland, WI — The AmsOil Speedway, ABC Raceway and Proctor Speedway are proud to announce that there has been a generous increase in the overall points fund for the upcoming FastLane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Series.

The three-track, three-race weekend series will open on Friday, June 19, at the big 4/10th-mile AmsOil Speedway in Superior before moving on to the 3/8th-mile ABC Raceway in Ashland the following Saturday night. The final round of the Series will be held on Sunday, June 21, at the 1/3rd-mile Proctor (MN) Speedway.

WISSOTA-sanctioned Super Stocks are invited to compete over that weekend for a chance at nearly $11,000 in feature purses being offered by the three Northland race venues, as well as a share of a final points fund that has now grown to over $7,000, to be paid out to the top ten in final points at the completion of the weekend.

The Series champion is now set to take home a whopping $1,475, to be presented by Halvor Lines. Any driver finishing in the top ten in the final Series standings will claim a minimum $250 from the points fund, and if a single driver should happen to post the feature wins at all three tracks during that weekend, he or she will be awarded an additional $700.

The Series will also offer a $100 “participant non-qualifier bonus” for every driver who finishes outside of the top-ten in Series points but competes at all three tracks during the weekend. A “hard charger” bonus of $100 will be paid out to the driver who advances the farthest from his starting position in each feature, and another $100 bonus will be paid to the driver who gains the most positions cumulatively in all three features.

“We would again like to thank all of our great sponsors for this event,” stated Series organizer and Proctor Speedway president Dennis McCauley. “If it wasn’t for all this great support, this Series would not be possible for our Super Stock drivers and fans.”

Series sponsors include FastLane Motorsports & Powdercoating, Lulich Implement, Northern Clearing Inc, White River Ag Products, Total Recreation, Arrowhead Printing, American Family Insurance-Nick Korhonen Agency, Bob’s South Tower Service, VIP Pizza, Bernick’s Beverages, Village Lanes, Duluth/Superior Trophies & Awards, Rick Gondik Law Office, Dennis & Cathy Pattee, Rick’s Auto Body, Halvor Lines, ICO Pit Stop, Bullyan RV, the Powerhouse Bar, Como Oil & Propane, and the NAPA Auto Parts Stores of Duluth, Superior and Ashland.

For more information regarding the FastLane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Series, including race details and sponsorship opportunities, please contact Dennis McCauley at (218) 348-9919.

ABC Raceway to Host FastLane Car Show to Open ’15 Campaign

May 8th, 2015

Ashland, WI — The ABC Raceway will kick off its 2015 stock car racing season with its annual Car Show and Swap Meet at FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating in Ashland on Saturday, May 9.

The event will be a great opportunity for local racing fans to get an advance “sneak-peek” at a sample handful of the stock cars that will soon be speeding around the nearby three-eighths-mile red-clay oval just south of town.

Along with the display of racing equipment, area car enthusiasts are invited to participate by showing off their custom cars, hot rods and classic cars in the parking area directly in front of FastLane’s headquarters, on US Highway 2 on Ashland’s East Side.

Racers will have the opportunity to take care of licensing, pit-spot reservations, and other pre-season “administrative” tasks during the car show, and fans can visit with drivers, fellow fans and ABC Raceway staff during the festivities.

In addition, the Northland’s only pre-race radio program, “Race Night,” will air from 10 am-noon live from FastLane Motorsports on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com.

The ABC Raceway has also set Thursday, May 14, aside for a “test-and-tune” session at the track, from 5-8 pm. There will be a pit-entry fee for racers, but the general public is welcome to watch for free from the grandstands. An alternate date of Tuesday, May 19, will be used in the event of inclement weather or unfavorable track conditions on the 14th.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Another Busy Slate Awaits ABC Raceway Fans

April 23rd, 2015

Ashland, WI — After a busy and historic 50th Anniversary season last summer, the ABC Raceway has another ambitious schedule planned for 2015.

The 15-event program will include traditional favorites as well as a handful of new events that will help spice up an already exciting schedule. Returning to compete on the venerable northern Wisconsin three-eighths-mile red-clay oval will be Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds as part of the WISSOTA Promoters’ Association’s Polydome Dirt Track Series, as well as the Raceway’s own Six-Cylinder and Pure Stock divisions.

The season will kick off in traditional manner on Saturday, May 9, with a car show and swap meet at FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating from 10 am-2 pm. The public is welcome to attend as area racers will bring their cars to display at the shop on Highway 2 on the east edge of Ashland, WBSZ-FM’s “Race Night” crew will be broadcasting live during the morning portion of the event, and local car buffs can certainly participate by showing off their prized vehicles alongside the racing hardware.

The on-track action begins on May 23 with the first of 14 regular-season race programs that will take place every Saturday night through Championship Saturday Night on August 29, with the exception of July 4.

Popular events that have anchored the schedule for many years include the Kids’ Meet the Drivers Night on June 6, the “Cure for Cancer” fundraiser night on June 27, the “Jam the Stands” Night on July 25, and the kids’ bike races on August 1. Meanwhile, one special new event has been added to ABC’s docket for 2015, as a salute to those who have served and are currently serving our country will be held during Armed Services Night on May 30.

The Raceway will induct its second class into its Hall of Fame during a special ceremony as part of its July 18 race program, and the features held that night for the WISSOTA-sanctioned divisions will serve as the track’s qualifiers for the prestigious Afco Shocks Race of Champions as part of the WISSOTA 100 in mid-September.

The Interstate Racing Association’s high-powered winged 410 sprints will venture north for the fifth straight year on June 20 to post triple-digit speeds on the red-clay race surface. That night’s show will also mark the middle event of the new three-night, three-track FastLane Motorsports Super Stock Challenge, which will begin in Superior on the Friday night before and conclude on the following Sunday evening in Proctor, MN.

A second local series, the Mid-Mod Summer Nationals during the weekend of August 14-16, will consist of events at Superior on that Friday, Ashland and Hibbing, MN, on that Saturday, and a big-money show in Proctor on Sunday.

“Each series will offer generous points funds for the drivers,” explained ABC Raceway president Eric Erickson recently. “Also, both series are special in that they show how the tracks in our region are cooperating, especially for the Midwest Mod series. The joint effort between the two participating Saturday night tracks – Hibbing and Ashland – makes for a unique partnership.”

Each of the ABC Raceway’s five regular divisions will be featured in special enhanced-purse nights during the summer. The “Midwest Modified Madness” program is set for June 13, followed by the Super Stocks’ series stop on the 20th. On July 11 “Modified Mayhem” puts the spotlight on the track’s premier division, and the “Pure Excitement 25″ gives fans the chance to help build the purse for the track’s entry-level class on August 8. The “Six-Cylinder Summer Sizzler” will be held as part of the Raceway’s Fan Appreciation night on August 22.

After a month off to prepare, the ABC Raceway will hold its 40th annual Red Clay Classic on Friday and Saturday, October 2-3. The crown jewel of Upper Midwestern stock car racing invitationals will include upwards of 200 Mid-Mods, Supers, Mods and WISSOTA Late Models battling for their share of a purse in excess of $80,000.

The Raceway welcomes the Stagecoach Bar & Grill of historic downtown Ashland as a new member of the long list of season-long sponsors that will support the track during the 2015 season. Other sponsors include AllPro Auto Parts; the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce; the Ashland-Bayfield County Sportsman’s Club; the Bad River Lodge, Casino & Convention Center; Chicago Iron & Supply; FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating; Heartland Communications, WBSZ-FM and WJJH-FM; Lake Shore Cafe & Catering; Little Caesar’s Pizza; NAPA Auto Parts of Ashland & Washburn; Northern Clearing Inc; Northern State Bank; Northern Wisconsin Fence; Northstar Beverage of Hurley and Pepsi; Outlaw Graphics; the Safari Bar; Tim’s Automotive Machine of Bloomer; and WIMI-FM.

“Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information prior to every race program live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

ABC Raceway Banquet Caps Off Historic 2014 Season

January 29th, 2015

Ashland, WI — The ABC Raceway completed the celebration of a very historic 2014 stock car racing season with a well-attended annual awards banquet on Saturday night at the AmericInn in Ashland.

After over 300 racers, crew members, sponsors, track workers and fans enjoyed a social hour and a buffet meal catered by Lake Shore Cafe of Ashland, trophies were presented to the top ten points finishers in each of the track’s five regular weekly divisions, while special awards were presented to both drivers and other individuals. Divisional champions were also presented with jackets commemorating their accomplishments, and all drivers participating in the Raceway’s points fund during the past summer’s campaign at the three-eighths-mile red-clay Northern Wisconsin oval were awarded their checks.

Prior to the awards ceremonies, Wisconsin State Senator Janet Bewley and State Representative Beth Meyers presented the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association a formal citation honoring the club for its 50 years of continuous successful operation. Outgoing Raceway Board president Kurt Beeksma then followed by acknowledging the 2014 track champions and expressing his appreciation toward the many generous sponsors who supported the track during the past season.

Beeksma also recognized the hard work of the track’s Board of Directors and its all-volunteer staff in making 2014 a highly successful season. Beeksma, who is stepping down as president of the club after serving in this capacity for the past 11 years, was then presented a plaque from vice-president Weaver Wherritt on behalf of the Raceway staff, expressing appreciation for his tireless and, as Wherritt stated, “passionate” efforts towards the unprecedented success that the Raceway has achieved during his tenure.

Steve Stuart of Ashland was presented his second championship jacket and trophy as ABC Raceway WISSOTA Modified champion. Stuart, who was lightning fast throughout the 2014 season, scored three feature victories, a division-best six heat wins, and established a new single-lap speed record for the mods on his way to his second title in the class and fifth ABC championship overall.

The highlight of Stuart’s campaign was not a win, however, but rather an outstanding runner-up finish in the Modified A-main during the track’s 39th Red Clay Classic weekend – his career-best finish in the prestigious event. Six-time track champ Jeff Spacek of Phillips was closest to Stuart in the final “big mod” rundown, while Kevin Eder and Scott Hudack, both of Ashland, and Superior’s Rick Rivord completed the top five in points. Paul Niznik of Medford, Washburn’s Pat Cook, divisional Rookie of the Year Travis Nye of Ashland, 2013 Mod champ Al Uotinen of Superior, and Iron River’s Brian Mikkonen completed the top ten.

Scott Lawrence of Superior extended his track records for championsips with his eleventh consecutive ABC Raceway WISSOTA Super Stock crown and 14th championship overall at the Ashland track. Lawrence only scored one feature win here in 2014, but that brought his career total to 54 – good for fifth-place on the track’s all-time win list. That, combined with six heat wins and seven other top-five feature finishes kept him in contention for the championship all season.

Lawrence’s advantage over second-finishing Cory Casari of Montreal – just 12 points – was the narrowest winning margin of any of the five divsional champs. Nick Oreskovich of Mason, 1993 Super Stock champ Randy Spacek of Phillips, and Shawn McFadden Jr of Ashland filled out the top five in points, while Ken Truscott of Greenland, MI, Superior’s Dave Flynn and DJ Keeler, Ironwood, MI’s Don Muzzy, and Dave Elliott of Minocqua garnered sixth- through tenth-place trophies.

Washburn’s Myron Basina, who finished just two points out of the top-ten, was named the Rookie of the Year in the Super Stocks at Ashland for 2014.

Mike Truscott of Chippewa Falls, who originally considered running only a part-time campaign at ABC this past season, made his long weekly trips north pay off by earning his first WISSOTA Midwest Modified title here in dominant fashion. His season started with feature wins during five of the first six nights of racing here this past summer and ended with a thrilling victory in the Red Clay Classic Mid-Mod headliner.

Truscott’s efforts in Ashland also helped him to a career-best third-place finish in WISSOTA’s national Mid-Mod points standings and were part of his 21 total feature wins on the season.

Also registering career-best finishes in points at ABC were Paul Suzik of Ironwood, MI, and Jeff Klopstein of Tomahawk, who wound up the season in second and third, respectively, while Ryan Adamzak of Ashland finished fourth for the third straight season, just ahead of youngster Cole Spacek of Phillips. Landing in positions six through ten were Niznik, Tanner Hicks of Ashland, top Mid-Mod rookie Tad Bretting of Ashland, three-time ABC champ Duane Dunbar of Marenisco, MI, and Cody Carlson of Superior.

As seemed appropriate for such an historic season at the Raceway, Tiffany Hudack of Ashland made history herself by becoming the Raceway’s first-ever female points champion, in the Six-Cylinder division. A highly successful high school and collegiate athlete, Hudack added to her impressive sports resume in 2014 while being the most consistent of the division’s runners, with ten top-five feature finishes and her first career feature win in the 12 shows run by the class during
the past summer.

Tiffany’s brother Tyler Hudack of Ashland, who led the division with five feature wins in 2014, finished second in the Sixes for the third straight season, while Ashland’s Forrest Schultz scored a caareer-best third-place points trophy. Ethan Beeksma of Ironwood, MI, the top-finishing rookie in the Sixes, finished fourth, just ahead of Zach Pagels of Marengo. Sixth through tenth included Ken Tyykila of Iron River, two-time champ Dale Coddington of Hayward, and Ashland pilots Aaron Mashlan, Adam Traaholt, and rookie Colton Vernon.

Matt Deragon of Ashland collected his second ABC Raceway Pure Stock championship trophy and jacket after a dominant 2014 campaign. Deragon’s 52-point final margin was the largest of any of the divisional champs, and he tied Pure Stock division records with eight total feature wins on the season and a run of five straight A-main checkered flags from July 12-August 9.

Terran Spacek of Phillips was closest in the final standings to Deragon, while Jeff Christman of South Range, two-time ABC champ Tim Carbon of Highbridge and Pure Stock Rookie of the Year Andrew Hanson of Iron River completed the top five.

Ashland’s Brandle Pupp, Chris Johnson of South Range, 2007 ABC Pure Stock champ Glenn Dammer of Duluth, MN, Randy Graham of Trego, and Superior’s Steve Udeen fell into the final points in order, sixth through tenth.

Each of the track champions was gracious in their acceptance speeches and appreciative of the help and suppport they received from their families, crew members, sponsors and fans.

Casari was named as Most Improved Driver for 2014, while the track’s Sportsman of the Year honor was presented to Niznik. Kurt Beeksma presented the prestigious President’s Award for outstanding service to the Raceway to George Bowers, and he also presented Nick Gima with the Raceway’s Award of Excellence, for his long-time involvement and efforts as announcer and publicist.

Following the awards presentation was a drawing for pit passes and pit spots for the drivers, as well as door prizes for the guests. Attendees then enjoyed music by BB King.

The ABC Raceway’s 2015 stock car racing season is slated to kick off in mid-May. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

ABC Raceway Accepting Nominations for 2015 HoF Class

January 26th, 2015

Ashland, WI — The ABC Raceway is currently accepting nominations for inductees into its Hall of Fame for the Class of 2015.

The Raceway, which will operate for its 51st consecutive season under the direction of the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Assocation during the upcoming summer, formally inducted its first-ever group into the newly-formed Hall of Fame on July 19, 2014. The inaugural group included three honorary inductees, four drivers and five others recognized for their volunteerism and other contributions. Nominees for induction under the category of Drivers should include those who had enjoyed significant success at the three-eighths-mile Northern Wisconsin stock car racing oval while also making a significant impact as an ambassador of the Raceway when competing at other tracks. To be eligible, a nominee needs to have been retired as an active competitor for a minimum of five years.

Drivers included in the Class of 2014 were Bob Brevak, the late Duane “Oulu” Erickson, Ron Hmielewski and Bob Root.

Nominees for induction under the category of Volunteers and Contributors should be persons or organizations that contributed significantly to the success of the ABC Raceway and to area stock car racing in general while exemplifying unselfish involvement and the true spirit of volunteerism, which has been the basis for the success of the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association. To be eligible, nominees need to have volunteered their time and efforts at the Raceway for a minimum of ten years, or to have significantly contributed to or influenced the success of the Raceway and the area racing community.

Those included in the inaugural class under the Volunteers and Contributors category were Dennis Asbach, Ron and Jeanne Hmielewski, Bob and the late Sandy Root, Weaver Wherritt, and Earl and Chris Zar. Also included as first-year inductees were the late Frank and Verna Brevak, the Northern State Bank, and the Vernon family and Northern Clearing Inc – all chosen as unanimous honorary selections for their generous and unselfish contributions to the origins of the Association and the Raceway and its growth and success. Nominations will be accepted until early March 2015 and must be accompanied by the nomination form found on the Raceway’s website, www.abcraceway.com, and two letters
of recommendation. Nominations can be mailed to ABC Raceway, PO Box 362, Ashland WI 54806.

The track’s Hall of Fame Selection Committee will meet in April to review the nominations, and the second Class of inductees will be announced during the opening night of the 2015 racing season at the track. A formal induction ceremony will take place later in the season.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Erickson to Lead ABC Raceway in 2015; Awards Banquet Scheduled

January 7th, 2015

Ashland, WI — The ABC Raceway held its annual meeting in early December at WITC, and during that meeting several items of business were settled, including the election of the officers and other Board members that will lead the venerable stock car racing operation into the 2015 season.

Eric Erickson, a long-time active Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association member who has served in several capacities within the organization, was elected as president of the Board of Directors, replacing Kurt Beeksma, who stepped down after 11 years at the post. This will be Erickson’s third turn as president.

A group of over two dozen members of the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association were on hand to discuss items on the annual agenda and hear presentations pertinent to the operation of the Raceway. After an extensive and well-detailed presentation of the track’s financial status, Beeksma gave a review of the season, emphasizing the highlights of the historic 2014 season, such as the track’s 50th anniversary celebration, the establishment of its Hall of Fame, and the record-breaking 39th Red Clay Classic event in late September.

Also discussed were a number of projects important to the Raceway’s success that are either currently ongoing, planned for the upcoming season, or recommended by the Board of Directors for consideration by the Assocation’s membership.

One change that will be implemented during the 2015 racing season will be the rescheduling of the track’s Monday meetings during the warmer months. The Raceway’s By-Laws Committee recommended changing the meetings from a weekly to a bi-weekly schedule, with the option of slating additional meetings if and when needed. This recommendation was accepted in a vote of those present by a simple majority.

Prior to the election of officers and other open Board positions, Beeksma expressed his appreciation to the many Association members, track volunteer workers and others who he worked with while serving as president. Erickson was nominated for president and accepted the post unopposed. Others who retained their positions as Board officers were vice-president Weaver Wherritt, secretary Katie Stuart, treasurer Cheryl Klobucher and assistant treasurer Mary Bowers.

Long-time Raceway Board member Mike Sorenson chose not to run again for his seat on the Board, which was one of four available due to expiring terms. Bowers, Mike Eder and Ray Stuart were re-elected to their seats, while Ed Hedican collected enough votes to fill Sorenson’s position. Those in attendance expressed their appreciation for the many years of service Sorenson contributed during his tenure.

The ABC Raceway will celebrate its 50th anniversary season with its annual awards banquet on January 24 at the AmericInn, 3009 E Lakeshore Drive, Ashland. A social hour will begin at 5 pm, followed by a buffet dinner at 6 and the awards ceremony at 7 pm. A door-prize drawing and music and dancing will follow the awards presentations.

Dinner tickets must be purchased before January 12; only tickets for the awards ceremony and dance will be available at the door. The AmericInn is also offering a room special for those wishing to attend the banquet and stay the the inn.

For more information on the banquet, please contact Cheryl at (715) 746-2390 or (715) 209-1373, or Mary at (715) 682-2672 or (715) 292-2672. For more information on the room special and availability, contact the AmericInn at (715) 682-9950 and mention the ABC Raceway banquet special.

The ABC Raceway 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, www.abcraceway.com.

Redetzke Nails Down Third RCC Title Glenz, Burdick, Truscott all first-time winners

September 30th, 2014

Ashland, WI– The 39th annual Red Clay Classic was held under absolutely perfect weather conditions at the ABC Raceway on Friday and Saturday, and Jake Redetzke of Eau Claire was absolutely dominant in winning his third WISSOTA Late Model feature at the northern Wisconsin track’s traditional season-ending special.

The three other A-feature winners on the weekend, however, were first-time Classic champions – Jesse Glenz of Cadott; Kevin Burdick of Proctor, MN; and Mike Truscott of Chippewa Falls. Well over 3,000 race fans filled the grandstands and pit area for the AmsOil Dirt Track Series event, presented by FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating and Tim’s Automotive Machine and supported by Lake Shore Cafe. A total of 177 competitors ran through 19 qualifying races on Friday and eight semi-features on Saturday to set the fields for Saturday night’s four championship features, as brilliant blue skies and temperatures near 80 greeted the crowds each day. Redetzke started the 50-lap Late Model headliner from the inside on the second row and followed outside front-row starter John Kaanta around polesitter Eric Pember into second. Brandon Jensen, making his first RCC start in a Late Model, slipped up to third quickly with Terry Lillo in tow as Pember was shuffled back.

Redetzke and Kaanta separated themselves from the field as the early laps clicked off quickly on the smooth, fast three-eighths-mile oval, and on lap 8 Redetzke made what turned out to be the winning move with an outside pass of Kaanta just prior to Trevor Wilson’s spin, which slowed the field for the first time. An Adam Hensel spin on the restart held things up for a moment, but Redetzke was able to pull to a 1.15-second lead over the next few circuits before Doug Blashe’s spin brought the field back to him on lap 13. Darrell Nelson, who had grabbed fifth just prior to the caution, worked outside on Lillo for fourth just after the green came back out. During the next 14 laps Redetzke again built up a lead of over a second and eventually caught the tail of the field as the race settled into a quick, comfortable pace. Deep in the pack, however, plenty of side-by-side and three-wide racing provided some tense moments, one of which resulted in a Todd Gehl spin on lap 27 to stop the action, and two laps later Zach Wohlers’ ride was looped. Redetzke again sped away after the restart and caught the backmarkers, but another yellow flag brought everyone around to his trunklid – this time for Wilson’s second spin on lap 38.

Nelson had gained another spot during the green-flag stretch and, restarting alongside Kaanta in third, tried to edge into second on the lap 38 restart. Kaanta used a strong low-side move to hold off the challenge before the next lap was scored, but this allowed Redetzke to scoot away. Defending RCC champ Nick Anvelink, who had started 15th, made a strong charge on the restart to pass as many as five cars in one lap, driving into fifth behind Jensen. Redetzke’s lead was 2.5 seconds when Jeff Massingill spun with five laps to go, but he had enought time to run to a 1.5-second advantage at the final stripe for his fourth career win at ABC and his first RCC win since going back-to-back in 2011-’12. Bolstered by a fast-lap bonus awarded by Northern Clearing, Inc, of Ashland, for his lap of 16.581 seconds, Redetzke took home a $4,150 winner’s check. Kaanta held off Nelson’s strong charges for second-place money, and Anvelink got by Jensen in the final laps for forth. Jeff Provinzino, who won his semi-feature to get in the show and started 21st, clawed his way to an impressive sixth-place run, ahead of Steve Laursen, Harry Hanson, Wohlers, and 20th-starting Mike Goodremote.

Glenz, who has had an incredible breakthrough season, started on the pole of the WISSOTA Modified feature, led every one of the 35 laps, and set the race’s fastest lap (17.399 seconds) to take home a first-place check of $3,150. A huge wreck that collected as many as nine cars marred the start, but over the first eight scored laps Glenz proved to be the man to beat, flying to a 2.9-second lead while ABC Raceway track champ Steve Stuart raced with Jay Richardson for second just ahead of a tight pack of cars. Mike Anderson’s car, slowed by a flat tire, brought out the first yellow flag of the race on lap 8, and Neil Balduc’s spin a lap after the restart kept things close, but from there the balance of the race ran off non-stop, giving Glenz the chance to run away and hide. On that lap 9 restart four-time RCC winner Joey Jensen worked the outside to take third from Richardson, and then he and Stuart began a side-by-side duel for second, allowing Glenz to quickly build a lead of over a second. Kelly Estey and Al Uotinen moved up to fourth and fifth as Richardson’s car fell back. On lap 19 Glenz held a 2.7-second lead, and two laps later he began weaving his way through slower traffic, which didn’t seem to hinder him. His advantage grew to nearly 3.8 seconds – nearly the length of a straightaway – before Stuart and Jensen even began their trek through the backmarkers.

Once he had some clear race track to work with Glenz put the game away, streaking to a final advantage of over 5.6 seconds for his first-ever feature win at ABC. Stuart eventually won the dogfight for second over Jensen, while Estey and the 12th-starting Uotinen completed the top five. Nelson and defending race champ Ashley Anderson took sixth and seventh, while eighth through tenth went to drivers who came from deep in the field – Jody Bellefeuille (started 22nd), Destin Lorimor (16th), and Rick Niemi (23rd). Burdick grabbed the lead early in the 30-lap WISSOTA Super Stock main event and held on for his first-ever feature win in Ashland, worth $2,150 after the bonus for posting the fastest lap of the run (18.017 seconds). Burdick, who started inside on row 2, worked past front-row starter Wayne Stricker into second behind former RCC winner Shane Kisling before defending race winner Curt Myers spun with one lap in the books.

The next 13 laps featured several thrilling battles for position among the top ten runners, including Kisling fending off Burdick for the lead and Eric Olson fighting his way by Rich Bishop and track champ Scott Lawrence to fourth behind Stricker. On lap 4 Olson got by Stricker, and at the same time Burdick began his move for the lead, although it took two laps to complete the race-winning pass. Burdick took advantage of the open track ahead of him and ran off to a 1.6-second lead over the new battle for second between the high-side-running Kisling and Olson hugging the low groove, which continued for several laps. Burdick’s lead grew to nearly four full seconds as he had backmarkers in his sights, but a spun Wayne Harris slowed the pace. Prior to the restart Kisling’s car would not refire and required a push-start, and Olson took advantage by stealing second, bringing Stricker along to third as Kisling fell out of the top five. Brian Mikkonen threatened to take third on lap 19, but Lawrence had a similar plan and displaced Stricker a lap later and then overtook Mikkonen on lap 21. The shuffling came to a stop on lap 23 for a Dave Flynn spinout, and things got hairy after that when, on the restart, the cars of Lawrence, Mikkonen and Ken Truscott became stacked together after hard contact, with another half-dozen cars collected in the aftermath. It took some time to clean up the mess, and although Lawrence could continue he was no longer a factor, while Mikkonen’s night was done.

Burdick ran off to a one-second lead with four laps to go, while Kisling’s car came back to life and threatened to take second from Olson’s. With two laps left Stricker, Steve Thomas and Shawn McFadden got together to force a green-white-checkered finish, but Burdick again sped away for his landmark win. Olson held second with Kisling in tow, while 21st-starting Mike Anderson took advantage of the carnage ahead of him to earn fourth-place money, ahead of Stricker. Finishing sixth through tenth were Bishop, Jeff Spacek (driving his brother Randy’s car), Nick Oreskovich, Flynn and McFadden, who started last on the 24-car grid. Truscott capped off a very memorable season at ABC in the only way that was fitting. After earning his first career track championship here and in the midst of a battle for a national championship, he battled with two other Red Clay Classic champs through three green-white-checkered finishes for his first-ever event win.

The drama started before the green flag ever dropped in the 25-lap WISSOTA Midwest Modified finale, as right after driver introductions pole-starter Cole Spacek’s car would not start, and it was pushed from the track. Two-time defending event champ Shane Halopka assumed the pole and immediately paced the field at the green ahead of Travis Anderson. but after just one lap front-row starter Mickey Nosser got caught up with Nick Koehler and others to bring out the first caution. Koehler bobbled on the restart, allowing Jeff Klopstein to claim third ahead of Tyler Luger and the fast-moving Jeremie Hedrich, who started 12th. Halopka ran off to a 1.7-second lead on Anderson, but everyone caught up with the leader after a multi-car incident on the front straight stopped the race on lap 6.

After Luger’s car spun on the restart, Klopstein threatened to take second from Anderson, while Hedrich made contact with Skeeter Estey’s car while battling for fourth and faded back. Halopka was up by over two seconds by lap 8, and when Anderson and Klopstein slipped up in a corner Estey, the 2010 RCC winner, took over second.

Nathan Thums spun deep in the field to slow things up on lap 14, and on the restart Truscott – who had started the race inside on row 7 – was shown in fifth. Anderson slowed when the race went under green, giving Truscott fourth, and on lap 16 he took third from Klopstein. Estey hustled inside to edge past Halopka for the lead on lap 21, and Truscott worked around the high side to take second.

Truscott continued to run the higher line to gain a slight edge on Estey with two laps remaining, but Klopstein, Grant Southworth and Mack Estey, running fourth, fifth and sixth, got together to bring out the yellow flag. On the restart Truscott again edged ahead of Skeeter Estey, but Stuart slowed with damage, forcing a second green-white-checkered attempt. Again Truscott gained a thin lead, and again the pass was negated by a caution, this time for Dave Shackleton’s spin.

Finally Truscott got by Estey as the leaders came to the white flag, and this time it held up for the $1,000 win – his sixth of the year here and division-leading 13th of his career at ABC. Halopka settled for third plus earned the fast-lap bonus with a 17.501-second circuit, while Klopstein and the 17th-starting Southworth completed the top five. Paul Niznik came from 15th to finish sixth, followed by Koehler, 23rd-starter Mark Kangas, Kerry Halopka and Hedrich.

Mod racer Kevin Eder of Ashland collected $1,200 from drivers and fans and challenged each of the second-place finishers in the features to wear a formal gown during their post-race interviews in Victory Lane as part of a “bridesmaid’s challenge.” While the younger Stuart, Olson and Estey participated in the spirit of the challenge and shared the cash, the veteran Kaanta took a more dignified approach and passed on the offer.

Late Model racer Rich Thomas of Aberdeen, SD, was awarded a $500 “long-haul” bonus for making the 450-plus-mile trip to compete at the ABC Raceway for the first time. The veteran driver qualified for the feature with a fifth-place run in his heat, and he finished the feature in 18th. The four feature races included out-of-car introductions of the drivers, four-wide salutes to the huge crowds and fireworks exploding in Victory Lane over the top three finishers.

The Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association will hold it annual awards banquet in January 2015 to close out its 50th anniversary season. More information will be made available on the Raceway’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

39th Red Clay Classic Could Be Best Ever

September 22nd, 2014

Ashland, WI — When the ABC Raceway opens the gates for its 39th annual Red Clay Classic on Friday, it hopes to offer racers and fans one of the most exciting weekends of racing of the season.

The Northland’s traditional season-ending stock car racing invitational will run Friday and Saturday, September 26-27, with four WISSOTA-sanctioned divisions running for a total purse estimated at over $80,000. FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating of Ashland and Tim’s Automotive & Machine of Bloomer will once again be the presenting sponsors. The event caps off the season-long celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association, which was formed in 1965 to organize and promote stock car racing in the Chequamegon Bay area of northern Wisconsin. The club is one of the longest continually-operating organizations of its kind in the Midwest.

During this special summer the Raceway opened its Hall of Fame and introduced its first-ever group of inductees. It also held a celebrational night for its members and workers past and present, and a picnic and on-track presentation on one Saturday night honored its 82 previous divisional champions. The action will include qualifying heat races on Friday night for all four divisions – WISSOTA Late Models, Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Mods. Upwards of 160-200 entries are expected to participate. On Saturday, semi-features offer drivers a last opportunity to qualify for the four big feature races. Then each division will run its main events. The Mid-Mods will go 25 laps while racing for a first-place check that has been recently increased to $1,000, and the Supers will take 30 laps to decide who will take home an upgraded $2,000 winner’s share. The increases in the first-place checks in these two
divisions are due to contributions to the overall purse from Lake Shore Cafe of Ashland.

Winning the 35-lap Modified A-main will earn that driver $3,000, while the top finisher of the spotlight 50-lap Late Model headliner will take home $4,000. In addition, Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland will again offer a $150 bonus to the driver who posts the fastest laps in each of the four features. The bonuses will be paid based on the AMB electronic scoring and timing system that the track utilizes. For drivers, several additional new bonuses have been offered for this year’s Classic. The Raceway will pay a $500 “long tow” award to the driver who travels the greatest distance to compete. The track will also cover the draw fees for any 2014
WISSOTA track points champion who comes to compete in their championship division this weekend.

Finally, the first five drivers in each division who pre-register to participate in this year’s Red Clay Classic but who have not raced in the event since 2010 will have their draw fees waived. The facilities themselves have been prepared for the weekend, with a lot of extra work done to accommodate fans and drivers alike. The most visible update will be the new pavilion that has been constructed in the main grandstands common area, which will eventually house the Hall of Fame displays.

In addition, crews have installed a new well and upgraded the public address system, and they have worked very hard for the past four weeks to give the facility an overall spruce-up in preparation for this signature event. Significant work to the track surface and pit driveways has also been accomplished since the Raceway’s regular-season finale on August 23. Social activities will abound during the race weekend, both at and away from the track. Merchants in Ashland’s Historic Downtown District and throughout the community will be offering specials for race fans, and on Saturday the annual four-person golf scramble will again be held at the Chequamegon Bay Golf Club, with a 9:30 am shotgun start.

At the track, music and dancing will be available at the new pavilion immediately following heat-race action on Friday night. And a fireworks show is slated to punctuate the Saturday night feature presentations. On Friday the pit gates will open at 1 pm, and the grandstand will open at 3:30. Hot laps will start at 5:30 pm, followed by the drivers’ meeting in the track’s infield and the pre-race ceremonies. The draw cut-off time for drivers is at 6 pm sharp, and heat race action is slated to begin at 7 pm.

On Saturday the pits will open at noon, and the grandstand gates will allow fans in at 2:30. The racing will start right at 5 pm with semi-feature action. Single-day adult grandstand tickets are just $20 on Friday and $25 for Saturday’s show, but fans can save five dollars by purchasing a $40 two-day pass. Kids ages 6-12 are admitted for $12 each night, but a kids’ two-day pass is just $20.

Reserved seats are also still available, and at $50 for adults and just $30 for kids ages 6-12 they include a two-day pass. A limited number of primitive reserved camp sites on the Raceway grounds are still available, for just $30 for the weekend. There is also camping available on the privately-owned property to the immediate east of the track, on a first-come, first-served basis.
To buy tickets or to save a seat or campsite, fans are urged to call (715) 682-2672 Monday through Friday (evenings only) or send an e-mail to tickets@abcraceway.com. Reserved pit spots are priced at just $30 each and are available by calling (715) 746-2390 or by e-mailing to tickets@abcraceway.com.

Prior to each night’s race program, “Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, beginning at 3 pm each night. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

2014 ABC Raceway Points Titles to Stuart, Lawrence, Truscott, Hudack, Deragon

August 25th, 2014

Ashland, WI, – On its final points-paying night of the 2014 race season, the ABC Raceway crowned its regular-season track champions after a fast-paced AmsOil Dirt Track Series program presented by Northstar Beverage of Hurley, Pepsi, and WIMI, 99.7 FM, of Ironwood, MI, on Saturday night. Repeat points champions included Steve Stuart of Ashland with his second title in the WISSOTA Modifieds and fifth overall here; Scott Lawrence of Superior for the 11th straight time in the WISSOTA Super Stocks and 14th overall in Ashland; Michael Truscott of Chippewa Falls for the first time ever here in the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds; Tiffany Hudack of Ashland for the first time ever in the Six-Cylinders; and Matt Deragon of Ashland for the second time in the Pure Stocks. Seventy-seven entries took to another lightning-fast red-clay racing surface on a cool, humid night, with the 17-race program completed by 9:45 pm.

Stuart held a 30-point advantage as the 14 Modifieds took to the track for their 20-lap feature and started on row 4 as outside front-row starter Neil Balduc took the initial lead. He maintained that lead after the race restarted following Paul Niznik’s stopped car after one lap was scored, and although Jeff Spacek dove low on Scott Hudack to take second and Stuart also worked inside against Eder for fourth, the passes were negated when Hudack slapped the turn 3 guardrail, ending his night.

Balduc sprinted away from Spacek and quickly built a lead of over a second on the field, while Eder stole second place away from Spacek. Stuart overtook Spacek for third on lap 3 and threatened Eder for several circuits while Balduc posted the fastest lap of the race during those early stages at 16.220 seconds – a mere two one-thousandths of a second off Stuart’s track record – while building his lead to nearly two full seconds.

At mid-race Stuart took a peek to the inside on Eder in a bid for second, but Zack Pagels’ spin set up a restart to kick off the second half of the run. Stuart swiped second on that restart and pulled Spacek along to third, but Eder reclaimed third two laps later. Balduc rebuilt most of his big lead, holding Stuart at bay by several car lengths for all but the final lap.

After taking the white flag, Stuart’s car suddenly broke loose coming out of turn 2 and he slowed dramatically, the victim of a flat right-rear tire. Balduc, of Bessemer, MI, cruised to his second straight feature win by nearly four seconds, with Eder holding off Spacek for second. Al Uotinen and Rick Rivord completed the top five. After his 12th-place finish Stuart’s final points margin was 21 over Spacek.

After a wild start to the 20-lap WISSOTA Super Stock A-main, Cory Casari of Montreal held off a determined Nick Oreskovich to win his 22nd career ABC Raceway feature and second in a Super, with the other coming back in June 2011. Brian Mikkonen grabbed the initial lead from pole-starter Greg Kuklinski, but before the second lap was scored Mikkonen spun in front of the field, after contact by Kuklinski. Casari captured the lead from Mikkonen on the restart and set the pace, with Oreskovich moving into second a lap later. The lead pair spent the next few laps pulling away from the field, with Oreskovich staying right in Casari’s tire tracks. After Shawn McFadden Jr won a one-lap tussle with Randy Spacek for third, Lawrence, who started outside on row 4, made a successful three-wide pass for fourth on lap 6.

The field was tightened up after a multi-car mess on lap 10, but Casari and Oreskovich pulled away again after the restart. Spacek shuffled Lawrence back to fourth and then overtook McFadden for third on lap 13, but three circuits later Lawrence regrouped to take fourth with three laps left. But the show was up front, where Oreskovich threw several moves at Casari in a bid for the win, albeit to no avail. Dave Flynn made a last-lap pass of McFadden to score fifth-place money.

Lawrence finished just 12 points ahead of Casari for the crown, as nine of the top ten in points took nine of the top ten finishing positions in Saturday’s feature. Last week Paul Niznik of Medford finished dead last in the 20-car WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature here, but he reversed his fortunes in a big way, holding off champ Truscott for his second win of his career here, with the other coming in June 2006. Duane Dunbar held the initial lead before Tyler Vernon took it away two laps into the 15-lap race, with Niznik slipping into third. After a scrum on lap 4 forced on the yellow lights, Niznik used the outside lane to sweep around Dunbar for second on the restart, pulling ninth-starting Truscott to third.

Niznik stayed upstairs to take the lead away from a strong-running Vernon on lap 7, one tour before Tad Bretting’s spin slowed the pace for a second time. Truscott passed Vernon for second on the restart, and after Cole Spacek’s car stopped just off the track to bring about another caution flag with six laps left, Truscott challenged Niznik with a low-side move, edging ahead with three laps left. Niznik, however, drove a determined race and fought back to take the lead with two to go, maintaining his momentum on the high line to hold on for a quarter-second margin of victory. Paul Suzik was not far back in third, followed by a nice run for Tyler Luger and Vernon. Truscott needed only to take a green flag at the start of the night to claim his first career points title here, with a 51-point final advantage over Suzik.

The family affair in the winner’s circle after the Six-Cylinder championship had an historic tone, as Ashland’s Tyler Hudack won the 15-lap battle but his older sister Tiffany Hudack won the war, becoming the first female racer to earn a points championship at the ABC Raceway in its 50-year existence. Zack Pagels edged ahead to set the initial pace of the non-stop run before a strong outside move by Colten Vernon on lap 2 put the rookie into the lead. Tyler Hudack followed into second, and the lead pair put on a fantastic show of door-to-door racing, swapping the point as they drew away from the field.

Tiffany Hudack, who sewed up the title after heat-race action was completed, moved by Pagels into third and watched from a distance as her brother and Vernon raced for the win. Tyler gained a little edge with a couple laps remaining, but Vernon came back strong, and in a photo finish Hudack claimed his fifth feature win of the season, and 13th of his career, by a final margin of just .12 seconds. Behind Tiffany in the top five were Pagels and Forrest Schultz. The final difference in the points was 38, in favor of Tiffany over her brother. Deragon had the Pure Stock title well in hand when he took to the track for the final regular-season feature of the year at Ashland, and he worked his way from the fourth row to win the eleventh ABC Raceway Pure Stock main event of his career to finish things off with a flourish.

Going back to lap 3 of the August 9 feature, the Pure Stocks closed the season here with 46 straight green-flag feature laps, as Jeff Christman pulled away from the pole to lead the first half of the 12-lap finale. Terran Spacek and Tim Carbon moved by Rita Anderson for second and third just after the start, but within two laps Deragon had caught and passed Carbon for third. The points champ then used a three-wide pass to take second on lap 3 and hunted down Christman, and while the leader made it a challenge, eventually Deragon got by, taking the lead on lap 6 and pulling away to a near-straightaway lead at the checkers.

Chad Carlson had taken third just before mid-race and slipped by Christman to take second on lap 7, where he stayed for the duration of the run, although Christman was not far behind him at the finish. Glenn Dammer, who started alongside Deragon, came home fourth, a ways ahead of Spacek. Deragon’s track-best eighth Pure Stock feature win of 2014 tied Casari’s track record, and his final 52-point advantage over Spacek was the largest winning margin in the five divisions. Fast-lap bonuses were awarded to Oreskovich (16.968 seconds) and Tyler Hudack (18.271), while Lawrence received the $50 bonus for having the Raceway’s 50th Anniversary decal on his car, based on a random draw.

The ABC Raceway crew will now take the next few weeks to prepare for the 39th annual Red Clay Classic on September 26-27. WISSOTA Late Models will join the Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Mods for the traditional end-of-season special, with upwards of 200 racers expected to compete for a purse set at over $80,000. Event information, such as gate openings, start times and other happenings taking place in conjuction with the Classic, will be released over the next couple of weeks. A limited number of on-site camping spots, reserved grandstand seats and pit spots are still available, with contact information posted on the Raceway’s website, www.abcraceway.com. “Race Night” will provide up-to-date racing news and weather information live from the track on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 3-4 pm on both nights of the event.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road.

ABC Raceway Offering Exciting Bonuses for 39th Red Clay Classic

August 24th, 2014

Ashland, WI, — Officials at the ABC Raceway have come up with an enticing set of bonuses to offer drivers for the upcoming 39th annual Red Clay Classic.

The Northland’s traditional stock car racing season finale, to be held on Friday and Saturday, September 26-27, is expected to draw upwards of 200 drivers from throughout the Upper Midwest and south-central Canada to compete for a posted purse in excess of $80,000 – one of the largest offerings in the region for a stock car racing special event.

To help make the event even more enticing for drivers, the Raceway’s Board of Directors will proudly offer four very significant bonus programs.

For starters, the draw fee will be waived for any 2014 WISSOTA track champion that comes to Ashland to compete for the weekend. In addition, the single competitor that hauls the farthest for the big two-day event will receive a $500 long-haul bonus.

Also, the first five drivers in each of the competing classes – WISSOTA-sanctioned Late Models, Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds – who pre-register for the event and have not competed in the Red Clay Classic since the 2010 edition will have their entry fees paid by the Raceway. In order to receive this bonus, drivers need to contact Raceway Board member Eric Erickson at (715) 209-2102. Finally, Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland will pay out $150 bonuses to the drivers in each of the four feature races who posts the fastest lap in their respective events, based on the Raceway’s electronic scoring and timing system.

Qualifying heat races for the 39th annual Red Clay Classic will be held on Friday night the 26th, and on Saturday the 27th final semi-feature qualifying rounds will be held before the four big main events. The Mid-Mods will run a 25-lap feature paying $600 to win, the Super Stock winner will receive an $1,800 first-place check after their 30-lap A-feature, the “big” Mods will battle 35 laps for a $3,000 winner’s share, and the Late Models will run their 50-lap main event for a top prize of $4,000.

All pricing for admission tickets and reserved seating, on-site camping and pit spaces remains the same as last year. Single-day adult grandstand tickets are just $20 on Friday and $25 for Saturday; fans can save five dollars by purchasing a $40 two-day pass. Kids ages 6-12 are admitted each night for $12, but a youth two-day pass is just $20. Reserved seating is priced at $50 for adults and just $30 for fans ages 6-12 and includes a two-day pass.

Well over 200 reserved camping sites are available on the Raceway grounds, priced at just $30 for the weekend. There is also camping available on the privately-owned property to the east of the track for a nominal fee, but only on a first-come, first-served basis.

To buy tickets or to save a seat or campsite, fans can call (715) 682-2672 Monday through Friday (evenings only), or send an e-mail to tickets@abcraceway.com.

Nearly 250 pit spots are available to race teams and are priced at just $30 each; these are available by calling (715) 746-2390 or by e-mailing to tickets@abcraceway.com.

Information regarding access times to the grounds, pits and grandstands, start times for hot laps and racing, the annual scramble golf tournament and other activities will be released at a later time.

Prior to each night’s race program, “Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com. The broadcast times will be announced at a later date.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Points Titles to be Decided at ABC Raceway

August 23rd, 2014

Ashland, WI — The points-paying portion of the 2014 racing season will come to a close at the ABC Raceway on Saturday night.
Pepsi, Northstar Beverage of Hurley, and WIMI, 99.7 FM, of Ironwood, MI, will present “Championship Saturday Night” at the three-eighths-mile red-clay oval just south of Ashland, where the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association has been celebrating 50 years of promoting and presenting stock car racing to the Northland all summer long.

Four of the five divisional champions could be decided by the time the features roll around, although several positions within the top ten in all five classes are yet to be nailed down. The tightest points battle heading into the final night is in the WISSOTA Super Stocks, where Scott Lawrence of Superior is looking to claim an unprecedented 11th straight division crown and track-best 14th of his career here. However, looming just 16 points back is Cory Casari of Montreal, and the top five in the standings are within just 31 points of Lawrence.

Three straight mid-summer feature wins had helped Jeff Spacek of Phillips pull to within two points of the lead in the WISSOTA Modified chase, and a possible seventh track title. But back-to-back heartbreaking performances, plus consistently outstanding runs by Ashland’s Steve Stuart over the past two months, has given Stuart 29 points of breathing room heading into the season finale. Stuart will look to stake a claim to his fifth ABC Raceway championship and second since moving up to the “big Mods” (2011).

Possibly the biggest surprise – and certainly the most historic – could come in the Six-Cylinder class, where Ashland’s Tiffany Hudack, with a 42-point edge on her brother Tyler, could become the first female in 50 years of racing at ABC to win a track title. Barring a mechanical breakdown in hot laps or any other disaster, Tiffany needs only to finish seventh or better in her heat race in order take the crown.

Second place may still be up for grabs, however, as three other drivers are within 20 points of Tyler.

Matt Deragon of Ashland is also within shouting distance of his second Pure Stock championship here. With a 44-point cushion on Terran Spacek of Phillips, Deragon should only have to take the green flag in his heat race in order to etch his name on the trophy. Deragon’s only real challenge will be to shoot for a track-best eighth feature win, which would tie him with Casari for the most ever in a single season by a Pure Stock.

Spacek and Jeff Christman should each be able to maintain top-three finishes in that division’s points as well with good runs.

In the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds, the title will be all sewn up as soon as Michael Truscott of Chippewa Falls unloads his racer and takes a lap. Truscott, who started the season white-hot and is very much in the thick of the National Championship discussion in WISSOTA’s most populated class, is working toward 20 feature wins overall this summer, and with a 51-point advantage on Ironwood, MI’s Paul Suzik here, is on the brink of his first career track points title.

With racing seasons either completed or winding down at most other area tracks, several non-regular visitors could make the trip to Ashland on Saturday night for one last note-taking session before the 39th annual Red Clay Classic comes up on September 26-27. The region’s traditional end-of-season spectacular will offer a purse in excess of $80,000 to the nearly 200 WISSOTA Late Models, Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Mods expected to compete.

Hot laps start on Saturday night at 6:15 pm, and the first race of the night will start at about 7. Championship presentations will take place after each division’s features. The grandstand and pit gates open at 5 pm, and admission tickets for fans ages 13 & older are just $10, while fans ages 12 and under are welcome in for free when accompanied by a paying adult.

“Race Night” will provide live up-to-date track news and weather information from the track on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm on Saturday. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Uotinen Returns to ABC Raceway Victory Lane Suzik, Beeksma earn first-ever wins

August 11th, 2014

Ashland, WI, — Defending WISSOTA Modified track champion Al Uotinen of Superior won his first feature in nearly eight years at the ABC Raceway Saturday night, while two other drivers – Paul Suzik and rookie Ethan Beeksma, both of Ironwood, MI – each earned their first career feature wins in another fast-paced AmsOil Dirt Track Series race program.

With the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce as the presenting sponsor, eighty entries took to the mutli-groove, sticky-fast red-clay track for a full five-division show, after which the Raceway – in the middle of its 50th Anniversary season – hosted a picnic and party for all in attendance on a clear, comfortable evening.

For the second straight program no feature winner started from the front row, including Uotinen, who started the 20-lap Mod main directly behind polesitter Paul Niznik. As Steve Lavasseur moved around the outside on Niznik for the initial lead, Uotinen slipped by to the inside for second, while Kevin Eder, points leader Steve Stuart and visiting Andy Jones battled feverishly close behind for fourth.

Uotinen stuck to the bottom groove and Lavasseur stayed high on the wide racing surface, and those two staged a great side-by-side battle for the lead, until Donnie Lofdahl and Dustin Hudack got together on lap 6 to slow the pace. Then, on the restart, Eder and Jones spun and collected Neil Balduc, sending Eder to the tail for the next green flag.

With the final 14 laps clicking off non-stop, Uotinen again battled with Lavasseur, with the pair swapping the lead with every lap, before Uotinen finally gained the advantage for good on lap 13. By then Stuart had finally fought his way past Niznik for third, and by the time he caught and passed Lavasseur for second with two laps remaining, Uotinen had built a significant enough lead that he crossed the final stripe nearly two full seconds ahead for his 25th career feature win in Ashland but first since August 2006. Jody Bellefeuille followed Stuart into third with two laps to go, and Lavasseur held on for fourth ahead of second-in-points Jeff Spacek, who started 16th.

With the ABC Raceway Board announcing this week that the WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature purse was to be bolstered a bit for the balance of the regular season, a full 20 cars were on hand for action. Suzik, in his third season, started the 15-lap feature inside on the second row but moved into the lead coming out of the first turns, while polestarter Tad Schoonover had his hands full holding off challenges from Rick Przybylski, Jeff Klopstein, Wayne Stricker and points leader Mike Truscott.

Tad Bretting looped his ride after the first lap and collected Duane Dunbar, and on the next attempt to start Tyler Vernon’s car dropped its driveshaft, but the frontrunners stayed in close formation after that restart as well. Debris stopped the show again after lap 2 was counted, but Przybylski had taken second prior to the yellow lights coming on.

From there the final 13 laps ran uninterrupted, and Klopstein grabbed second from Przybylski on that final restart of the race. A circuit later Truscott moved inside on Stricker and then Przybylski to take over third, but by then Suzik had a full-second lead and was pulling away.

Once in the open field, Klopstein had to use every trick in the book to hold off a charging Truscott, as the pair also began cutting into Suzik’s advantage. The front runners began weaving their way through the tail end of the field with two laps left, and in the traffic Truscott tried to get past Klopstein one last time with an unsuccessful three-wide pass. Suzik came home with the popular landmark win comfortably ahead of Klopstein, who held off Truscott.

Stricker was a distance back in fourth, and after some post-race controversy Tanner Hicks was awarded fifth.

Beeksma, whose father Patrick won 30 Six-Cylinder features and four track titles on the Ashland oval, started sixth on the 15-car grid and was part of an early-race seven-car cluster battling at the front of the Sixes’ headliner. By lap 2 Aaron Mashlan had won the argument over the lead, but the rookie Beeksma worked his way around Mashlan a lap later and held the lead for the rest of the run.

On lap 4 DeJay Mihalek’s car stopped on the back straight to bring out the first of the race’s two yellow-flag slowdowns, and after that restart Schultz and Tiffany Hudack leapt past Mashlan and pole starter Brandon Ottman into second and third, respectively. Beeksma was eight-tenths of a second up on Schultz on lap 7, but that lead disappeared when Mashlan tagged the back straightaway wall just shy of mid-race.

Hudack gained second place on the restart, and rookie Colton Vernon used a strong outside run to take third within another lap, but Beeksma had already picked up where he had left off, building another lead of a second or more. Dale Coddington joined Hudack and Vernon to form a fun three-car battle to watch for second, but Beeksma cruised to the win by a decisive cushion and earned the Northern Clearing fast-lap bonus in the process, posting a lap of 18.295 seconds during the run.

Second-finishing Hudack increased her points lead in the division significantly after her brother Tyler did not make the call for the feature, Coddington edged ahead of Vernon on the final lap, and Schutz took over second place in the points standings with his top-five run.

Mason’s Nick Oreskovich quickly worked his way from the second row to the front, then held off a determined Cory Casari to claim his second WISSOTA Super Stock feature win of the season here and second in as many nights, following a strong run at Superior on Friday. Oreskovich worked the inside line while Ken Truscott hustled around the high side for a couple of laps before Oreskovich finally laid claim to the lead, with points leader Scott Lawrence working quickly up to third.

On lap 3 Lawrence overtook Truscott for second but trailed the “Flyin’ Farmer” by nearly two-thirds of a second before a four-car scramble among backmarkers drew the yellow flag out for the only time in the 20-lap race. Casari restarted third and worked a low-groove line over the course of the first full lap back under green before finally wrestling second place from the 13-time track champ.

The half-second advantage that Oreskovich had created just after the restart began to dissolve, and with just three laps to go Casari was showing the nose of his car just off Oreskovich’s left shoulder and threatening to take the lead. Casari had to check up to avoid contact with Marcus Dunbar as the leaders put the rookie a lap down at the white flag, but he recovered enough to make one last unsuccessful charge at the checkers, where Oreskovich prevailed by 51 one-thousandths of a second – barely a fender-length.

Lawrence came within a tenth of a second of his track record in setting the fastest lap of the run (16.914 seconds) and picking up the Northern Clearing bonus as well as a third-place check. Andy Grymala and Truscott completed the top five Matt Deragon of Ashland needed a last-lap pass of Chad Nikstad to win his fifth straight and track-best seventh Pure Stock feature of the season. But not all of the work he had to do to accomplish this task came on the race track – the division’s points leader lost a tire and wheel while leading his heat race earlier in the event.

Deragon did have to start dead last on the 12-car starting grid and recovered from an early-race bobble that put him at quite a disadvantage to the five-car lead pack, which was pulling away and putting on another wild show. But when leader Nikstad was spun by second-running Randy Graham with three laps in the books, Deragon regrouped and made a charge from a fifth-place restart.

Michael Blevins, making his first-ever visit to the Ashland track, and Steve Udeen sandwiched Nikstad on the restart, with Udeen edging ahead, but on lap 6 Nikstad fought back with an inside pass and reclaimed the lead. Deragon drove through the middle of the pack up to third, then slipped to the outside to pull alongside Nikstad with two laps left. Coming off the final turn Deragon edged ahead just enough for the win, while Blevins drove down low to Nikstad’s left flank to complete a three-wide formation under the checkered flag. Terran Spacek swiped fourth away from Udeen on the final lap. Prior to the program, the ABC Raceway, along with Brian Custer, Tyler Vernon and Colton Vernon, representing Northern Clearing Inc, presented a check to Janice Koehler of the Ashland-Bayfield County chapter of the American Cancer Society’s “Relay for Life” program in the amount of $2,796, which was collected during the track’s recent fundraiser event.

The 11th annual “Pure Excitement 25″ Pure Stock special will take place at the ABC Raceway on Saturday, August 16, presented by the Ashland-Bayfield County Sportsman’s Club. Fans and businesses are welcome to contribute to an overall feature purse that is expected to exceed $5,000 and will pay at least $700 to the winner. All five divisions will be in action on this next-to-last points-paying night of the 2014 season.

Hot laps start on Saturday night at 6:15 pm, and the first green flag of the night will fly at around 7. The grandstand and pit gates open at 5 pm, and admission tickets for fans ages 13 & older are just $10, while fans ages 12 and under are welcome in for free when accompanied by a paying adult. “Race Night” will provide up-to-date racing news and weather information live from the track on WJJH, 96.7 FM, and online at www.wjjhfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm on Saturday.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

ABC Raceway to Celebrate 50 Years with Post-Race Party Saturday

August 8th, 2014

Ashland, WI — The Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association has been using the 2014 season to celebrate its 50th season of promoting stock car racing in the Northland. But how can you not celebrate 50 years without a party?

On Saturday night the club will host a post-race party, with free food and music for those who’ve paid to watch the five-division racing program, at the ABC Raceway. The Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce will be the presenting sponsor of the racing action at the three-eighths-mile red-clay oval located just south of Ashland.

With the season winding down, several points battles are yet to be decided. With his 57th career feature win at ABC last Saturday night, Jeff Spacek of Phillips drew to within just two points of leader Steve Stuart of Ashland at the top of the WISSOTA Modified standings. The two former track champs have won seven of the eight “big Mod” features run here this summer and are the primary contenders in what should be a very exciting battle to that division’s crown.

In the WISSOTA Super Stocks, Dave Flynn of Superior picked up his third feature win of the season here last Saturday night, but Scott Lawrence, also of Superior, collected his third second-place finish in the past four weeks and extended his advantage in the points standings in that class ever so slightly – to six ahead of Montreal’s Cory Casari and ten up on Randy Spacek of Phillips.

Mike Truscott of Chippewa Falls has already set the Raceway’s record for feature wins in a season by a WISSOTA Midwest Modified driver with five, and the division’s all-time career feature win mark at 11. His 53-point advantage in the Mid-Mod standings seems almost insurmountable, but Ryan Adamzak of Ashland took $600 from Truscott last Saturday night when he slipped by on late-race restart for the “Mid-Mod Madness” feature win.

Dale Coddington of Hayward earned his 20th career ABC Raceway Six-Cylinder main event win last weekend. But after mechanical issues knocked Ashland’s Tyler Hudack out of that race, Tiffany Hudack of Ashland became the first female driver in the track’s 50-year history to lead a division in points with her second-place performance; her points lead is six over brother Tyler.

Like Truscott in the Mid-Mods, Ashland’s Matt Deragon has become the Raceway’s dominant Pure Stock driver, with a track-best six feature wins after last Saturday night’s effort. Riding a 31-point cushion on Terran Spacek of Phillips, another win for Deragon this weekend here will break Tim Carbon’s record of four straight Pure Stock A-main checkereds, and with three shows remaining he has a chance to break Casari’s record of eight Pure Stock feature wins in a single season.

In another significant announcement, the Board of Directors of the ABC Raceway has announced that it will increase its purse offered to the WISSOTA Midwest Mods during the remaining three regular-season race nights at Ashland. Each finishing position in the August 9, 16 and 23 Mid-Mod features will result in an increase at the pay window, with the feature winner’s share being bumped to $300.

“It’s just a small way in which to show our appreciation for the Midwest Mod drivers coming out in strong numbers all season and supporting our track,” explained Raceway spokesperson Eric Erickson.

Hot laps start on Saturday night at 6:15 pm, and the first race of the night will start at about 7. The grandstand and pit gates open at 5 pm, and admission tickets for fans ages 13 & older are just $10, while fans ages 12 and under are welcome in for free when accompanied by a paying adult.

“Race Night” will provide live up-to-date track news and weather information from the track on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm on Saturday. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Tickets, Camping, Pit Spots Now Available for 39th Red Clay Classic

August 5th, 2014

Ashland, WI,– Reserved seating, camping sites and pit parking are now available for the 39th annual Red Clay Classic at the ABC Raceway. The three-eighths-mile red-clay oval located south of Ashland will host the Northland’s traditional stock car racing season finale on Friday and Saturday, September 26-27, and upwards of 200 drivers from throughout the Upper Midwest and south-central Canada are expected to compete for a posted purse in excess of $80,000. The purse is one of the largest offerings for a special racing event in the region.

WISSOTA-sanctioned Late Models, Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds will take to the track for qualifying heat races on Friday night. On Saturday, the Mid-Mods will run a 25-lap feature paying $600 to win, the Super Stock winner will receive an $1,800 first-place check after their 30-lap A-feature, the “big” Mods will battle 35 laps for a $3,000 winner’s share, and the Late Models will run their 50-lap main event for a top prize of $4,000.

In addition to the big winners’ checks and a generous overall payout, the event will also offer a $500 “Champions’ Challenge” to any past RCC winner who captures a feature on that Saturday, and Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland will pay $150 each to the drivers that post the fastest-timed laps in all four main events.

Fans who purchased reserved seats or campsites for the 2013 Red Clay Classic, or racers who purchased pit spots for last year’s show, have until August 9 to renew their reservations. On August 10 the Raceway will make all remaining seats, sites and spots available to the general public. All pricing remains the same as last year. Single-day adult grandstand tickets are just $20 on Friday and $25 for Saturday’s show, but fans can save five dollars by purchasing a $40 two-day pass. Kids ages 6-12 are admitted for $12 each night, but a kids’ two-day pass is just $20.

Reserved seating is also available, priced at $50 for adults and just $30 for kids ages 6-12, and includes a two-day pass.

Reserved camping on the Raceway grounds is just $30 for the weekend. There is also camping available on the privately-owned property to the east of the track, but that is on a first-come, first-served basis.

To buy tickets or to save a seat or campsite, fans are urged to call (715) 682-2672 Monday through Friday (evenings only), send an e-mail to tickets@abcraceway.com, or inquire at the grandstand ticket window during any of the remaining regular-season race nights on Saturdays in August.

Reserved pit spots are priced at just $30 each. Pit parking is available by calling (715) 746-2390 or by e-mailing to tickets@abcraceway.com.

Information regarding access times to the grounds, pits and grandstands, start times for hot laps and racing, the annual scramble golf tournament and other activities will be released at a later time.

Prior to each night’s race program, “Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com. The broadcast times will be announced at a later date.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Adamzak Takes ABC ‘Mid-Mod Madness’ Win

August 4th, 2014

Ashland, WI,– Ashland’s Ryan Adamzak took advantage of a late-race restart to steal a huge $600 WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature win at ABC Raceway on Saturday night.

Northern Wisconsin Fence of Phillips and Outlaw Wraps & Apparel of Ashland presented the fast-paced 70-car AmsOil Dirt Track Series stock car racing program during a hot, humid early-August night that was completed well before 10 pm on another fast, wide, racy track. To prove just how racy the track was: all of the five feature winners on this night started from the third row or farther back. The eighth annual “Mid-Mod Madness” feature started with polesitter Jeff Klopstein jumping into the initial lead, while Mike Truscott worked the inside groove against Tyler Vernon for second. After a lap 2 stoppage for debris, Vernon made the outside line work to edge ahead of Truscott, and Cole Spacek tried a similar move to take third. However, Spacek’s car turned sideways in front of most of the 18-car field, and when a pair of cars bumped his at speed, Spacek’s car rolled once over before coming to rest driver’s-door down. The youngster from Phillips was unharmed.

Truscott used some high-side momentum on the restart and within a lap took over the lead. However, unlike other nights here this year, the track points leader was unable to pull away and dominate; throughout the next 13 uninterrupted laps Klopstein used the low groove to stay right alongside of Truscott and even make several determined efforts to take the lead away, but Truscott fought off every threat by riding the rim of the three-eighths-mile oval.

With the lead pair battling, Adamzak – who started outside on row 3 – ran in the top five throughout the extended green-flag run. He took advantage of Vernon’s bobble on lap 6 to move into third place, bringing Paul Niznik and Wayne Stricker along into fourth and fifth. Adamzak was still quite a ways back of the battle for the lead until the caution lights came on with five laps remaining, for a Rick Przybylski-Tad Schoonover get-together in turn 3.

Adamzak lined up on the outside of the second row for the “Delaware double-file” restart and, at the drop of the green, outran Klopstein and pulled alongside Truscott, who held the bottom to fend off Klopstein. Adamzak swept around Truscott and held on for a three-quarter-second advantage at the final stripe, while Niznik again followed Adamzak, this time around Klopstein to take third-place honors. Stricker, in his first night back in a Mid-Mod, completed the top five. Prior to the start of the 20-lap race, former ABC Mid-Mod champ George Dalbeck added $100 to the originally-stated $500 feature winner’s total, and defending event winner Travis Nye threw in $50 to be awarded to the farthest-advancing “hard charger” of the race, which was split between Stricker (who started 11th) and Tanner Hicks, who started 15th and finished ninth.

Hicks also received the $50 bonus for displaying the Raceway’s 50th Anniversary decal on his ride, as a result of the random finishing-position draw prior to the race, and Truscott set the fastest lap of the run with a time 17.278 seconds to receive that $50 bonus from Northern Clearing Inc. Event co-sponsor Outlaw Wraps & Graphics also presented generous prize packages to the top three finishers. In one of the two features to run non-stop, Jeff Spacek of Phillips came from the fourth row to race with Niznik and Steve Stuart for the win in the 20-lap WISSOTA Modified A-main. Rick Rivord grabbed the early advantage as polestarter Pat Cook got shuffled back, allowing Niznik to move into second. Niznik worked his way around Rivord on lap 3 just as Spacek moved into third.

Stuart, who started alongside Spacek, used a couple of gutsy moves to shoot through into third spot on lap 7, and by mid-race he was within striking distance of the lead pair. It took Spacek seven full laps of chasing Niznik around the high lane before he finally switched to the low side and drove by for the lead, but Niznik charged back with eight to go, just as Stuart reached the leaders.

Spacek finally retook the point for good on lap 13, and while Stuart diced with Niznik for runner-up honors the six-time track champ pulled away to a lead of nearly a full second. With four laps left Stuart fianlly cleared Niznik, but he was unable to close the gap between himself and the winner. Spacek’s third-straight victory was also his fourth of the season and 57th all-time at Ashland, and he and Stuart have won the last seven “big Mod” features here. Niznik brought home his second third-place check of the night, while Rivord held on for fourth ahead of Kevin Eder. Stuart set the fast lap of the run with a time of 16.503 seconds to earn the Northern Clearing $50 bonus for the Mods.

The other non-stop run came in the WISSOTA Super Stocks, where Dave Flynn of Superior outran his fellow hometowner Scott Lawrence for his third feature win of the season and second in three weeks. The Raceway’s all-time feature win leader, Greg Kuklinski, started on the pole and looked very strong from the start, pulling away quickly from Shawn McFadden Jr and Don Muzzy. Flynn, who started outside on row 3, used an inside move to take second away from McFadden, and Lawrence followed right in Flynn’s tire tracks to claim third.

As Flynn and Lawrence chased down Kuklinski, a wild four-car battle for the fourth through seventh positions raged throughout the entire race, as McFadden, Randy Spacek, Cory Casari and Shane Kisling fought tooth-and-nail and swapped spots on nearly every lap.

The twosome from Superior eventually caught Kuklinski’s back push-bar just before mid-race, but Lawrence took a shot at a pass for second and Flynn was forced to defend, allowing Kuklinski to extend the lead a bit. Flynn regrouped and worked his way up and around Kuklinski and, over the course of a little more than a lap, overtook the leader on lap 13, with Lawrence following suit within the next circuit. From there Flynn and Lawrence pulled away to decide the win for themselves.

The deciding factor in the final order came courtesy of an encounter with slower traffic. On lap 17 Flynn got by Myron Basina without much trouble, but Lawrence – who had been right on Flynn’s tail – tangled with Basina, who looked to be trying to get out of the way. The heavy contact slowed Lawrence considerably and gave Flynn a 1.6-second cushion at the final stripe, while Kuklinski cruised home a solid third. Spacek won the skirmish for fourth place ahead of McFadden, as contact in the final corner left Kisling’s car sideways as the checkers flew. For a while it looked as though Tiffany Hudack would win her second straight Six-Cylinder feature on Saturday, but Dale Coddington charged through the field to take the win away. It only took Hudack a lap to get from the third row to second place behind front-row starter Forrest Schultz, aided by second-place Zach Pagels’ spin, and within a lap after the restart Hudack hustled past Schultz and looked to be on her way.

But Coddington, who started directly behind Hudack, had restarted third and followed her past Schultz into second, and over the next seven green-flag laps the two put on a very entertaining battle for the lead. What made things more interesting was when Tyler Hudack – Tiffany’s brother and the points leader entering the night’s action – lost fourth place to rookie Ethan Beeksma and then suddenly slowed and pulled off the track with mechanical issues just five laps into the 15-lap run.

Tiffany Hudack hugged the bottom groove, forcing Coddington to work his way around the outside, but eventually the division’s defending champ from Hayward found his way by on lap 8. After another circuit the event was halted when Jeremy Lindquist’s motor blew and burst into a sudden ball of flame. Lindquist stopped the car immediately and climbed out safely.

Over the six-lap sprint to the finish Coddington held on for his third feature win of the season and 20th of his career here. Tiffany Hudack fended off a late challenge by Schultz to claim second and, because of Tyler’s bad luck and 14th-place finish, become the first-ever female driver to hold a points lead at the ABC Raceway. Rookies Colten Vernon and Beeksma had very impressive runs to also finish in the top five.

Ashland’s Matt Deragon continued his domination of the Pure Stock field as he rumbled his way to a fourth-straight and track-best sixth feature win. After Chris Johnson edged ahead of polestarter Rita Anderson to take the initial lead, rookie Andrew Hanson took his turn at the front by slipping by to the inside on lap 3 of the 12 scheduled.

Deragon, who started eighth in the ten-car field, musculed his way through the closely-packed field to move past Hanson on lap 5, and Steve Udeen, who started right behind Deragon, followed him into second. The race’s only slowdown came on lap 8, when Tim Carbon spun and stopped, and Udeen kept the pressure on for the final four laps, but Deragon eventually pulled away to a six car-length win to extend his points lead. Hanson held on for third ahead of Jeff Christman and Randy Graham, as the trio crossed under the checkers in tight formation.

Several racers and business contributed to a giveaway of 50 T-shirts to fans in attandance. Those contributing included Moore’s Army-Navy Store, Hoosier Tire North, Northstar Beverage and Pepsi, Stuart Racing, Oreskovich Racing, Prochnow Racing, the ABC Raceway, SSR Race Cars, Klopstein Racing, FYE Motorsports, McFadden Racing, Vernon Racing, Truscott Racing, and All the Dirt Racing News.

The Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association invites its fans and racers to help celebrate its 50 years of stock car racing in the Northland immediately following its show next Saturday night. The Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce will present the racing program, and the Raceway will serve food and beverages and offer music afterwards. Hot laps start on Saturday night at 6:15 pm, and the first green flag of the night should fly at around 7. The grandstand and pit gates open at 5 pm, and admission tickets for fans ages 13 & older are just $10, while fans ages 12 and under are welcome in for free when accompanied by a paying adult.

“Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live from the track on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm on Saturday. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

‘Mid-Mod Madness’ to Kick Off August Action at ABC Raceway

August 1st, 2014

Ashland, WI — The third of the ABC Raceway’s five regular weekly divisions will get its moment in the spotlight on Saturday night, as racers at the track get ready for the August “stretch run.”

Northern Wisconsin Fence of Phillips and Outlaw Wraps and Apparel of Ashland will be co-presenters of the eighth annual “Midwest Mod Madness” special, with an enhanced purse offered to the newest WISSOTA-sanctioned division to join the northern Wisconsin dirt oval’s regular Saturday night program. “The Mid-Mods have really become a strong part of the show – not only in our program, but throughout WISSOTA,” Raceway president Kurt Beeksma stated recently. “The rules and cost-saving measures keep them relatively affordable for most drivers, yet the type of cars that they are make them very competitive. They generally bring the biggest numbers each race night to almost every track that runs them.”

While the class has historically been competitive here, this season seems to belong to Mike Truscott. The second-generation racer from Chippewa Falls has made ABC his regular Saturday night haunt after several seasons of sampling a variety of tracks, and it has paid off in a big way. Truscott has won five of the seven features run this season by the division here and has become the Raceway’s all-time feature win leader in the class, with 11 of the track’s 83 total feature wins to date.

Truscott’s streak of winning a heat race every night this season at Ashland came to a dramatic stop on July 19, however, when his car barrel-rolled while trying to make its way through the field during his heat. With a lot of help from his fellow racers he was able to make repairs and run the feature that night, coming from the tail of a very competitive 21-car field to finish sixth.

Overall in 2014 he has nearly 20 feature wins on the season and sits a close second in WISSOTA’s national Mid-Mod points standings. He has also built himself a comfortable 41-point advantage on Ironwood, MI’s Paul Suzik in the division’s current standings at Ashland with just four points-paying race nights remaining.

The Mid-Mods did not run here during last Saturday’s visit by the touring IRA sprints. Truscott will look to win the “Madness” money for the first time in his career, but that can also be said for everyone expected to compete Saturday in this class. None of the previous seven winners of this event are currently active in the Mid-Mods, although past winners Travis Nye, Matt Leer and Steve Stuart are still around, albeit racing in “big Mods” now.

In fact, Ashland’s Stuart is the current points leader in the WISSOTA Modified class at ABC, while Nye – last year’s winner in the Mid-Mod special – is the top
“big Mod” rookie here.

Other division points leaders as the final month of the regular season begins include Scott Lawrence of Superior in the WISSOTA Super Stocks, Ashland’s Tyler Hudack in the Six-Cylinders, and Matt Deragon of Ashland in the Pure Stocks.

Hot laps start on Saturday night at 6:15 pm, and the first green flag of the night should fly at around 7. The grandstand and pit gates open at 5 pm, and admission tickets for fans ages 13 & older are just $10, while fans ages 12 and under are welcome in for free when accompanied by a paying adult.

“Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live from the track on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm on Saturday. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715)682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Balog Takes Advantage of Late Race Restart to Keep ABC Raceway Win Streak Alive

July 30th, 2014

Ashland, WI – Day two of the Bumper to Bumper IRA Sprints “Northwoods Tour” was another example of how sometimes it’s not about the most laps lead, it’s a matter of which one. Bill Balog would pace the final one this evening, and as a result he continued his stronghold on victory lane at ABC Raceway. A track where he has now captured wins in all three contests held at the facility.

In tonight’s show Mother’s nature put forth occasional sprinkles during the 30 lap A-main contest as officials and drivers hustled to complete the program. Travis Whitney of Coon River, MN appeared to have a tight grip on the lead, and was only 4 laps away from streaking under the checker flag. Four laps however, is a long distance when being chased by six-time IRA champion Bill Balog. Still, Whitney’s speed seemed enough as the laps wound down, the field had clicked off 26 of the first 30 laps without interruption, and then the contest became an entirely new race. On lap 26 heading into turn three, Jordan Goldesberry slipped in turn three taking a spin. The field skillfully avoided him, but the caution had to appear, and now the field was bunched up on Whitney’s read nerf bar, Perhaps most frustratingly for Whitney, Balog was right behind him was the green flag flew. When Whitney’s car stumbling to gain speed, Balog whipped past taking over the top spot, that’s when Whitney’s night got even worse. As he headed into turns three his machine locked wheels with Blake Nimee who was attempting to pass, when the pair disconnected, Whitney wound up spinning to the bottom of turn four, resulting in a final slowdown.

Whitney retired from a race where he had gone from first to a DNF, in less than a lap. Nimee, who was also on the verge of his first podium finish saw his efforts erased. Balog on the other hand was able to pace the final circuits. The end result has his seventh win of the 2014 season. The battle for second waged down to the final two laps when Rookie of the Year contender, Scotty Thiel, muscled his was past Scott Uttech. Thiel had a frustrating weekend to this point, having had additional engine issues with his 410 engine the prior evening at Langlade County Speedway in Antigo. He unloaded his ASCS powered 360 machine for tonight’s race at ABC Raceway, a car which was a near perfect match for a somewhat slick racing surface.

The second place performance was his best of the 2014 racing season, improving upon his third place run at 141 Speedway back in May. Uttech’s third place podium earning performance matched his best effort of the 2014 season. He had previously reached the podium with a third place effort at Oshkosh in early May. A nearly picture perfect afternoon turned into a surprisingly weather challenged night. Officials, knowing rain was in the area hustled to get the starting field for the A-main trackside as light precipitation began to fall. The 30 lap contest on the banked third-mile clay oval was to have seen Scott Biertzer begin the contest on the pole,
but his machine refused to fire, elevating Uttech to the position. 2012 Wilmot Raceway champion, Tommy Sexton, opened the contest from outside the front row becoming the initial leader of the event. Whitney, who had started fourth, powered his way to the front on lap three while second place became a the focus of the fans attention, as Uttech, Sexton, Balog, and Blake Nimee all maneuvered to various grooves on the track to find a way to hold that position. Balog got a grasp on the second spot by the fifth lap, but by now Whitney had motored away from the field with a full straightway lead.

Uttech meanwhile, held fast to the inner groove placing a hold on the third spot, with Nimee driving a backup machine owned by Wayne
Modjeski having laid claim to fourth. Whitney, a former two-time series champion, was showing the speed and skill he had utilized to win his two titles several seasons ago. He was able to maintain his lead on Balog as the pair started working back markers and the race quickly past the halfway point. With the field strung all the way around the track, Whitney carefully picked off lapped cars with Balog continuing to apply the pressure. Whitney appeared to have the race in hand when the caution flew on lap 26 for oldesberry’s spin. Whitney’s engine stumbled on the restart and Balog taking advantage of the situation flying into the lead. Before the end of the lap the tangle between Whitney and Nimee forced a second caution, and ended what would have been a solid evening for both drivers. This setup a four lap dash to the checker with Balog showing the way, followed by Uttech. Thiel, suddenly found himself in third, with Sexton and Neitzel now in the top five. The race resumed with Balog clearly in command. Thiel meanwhile muscled his way past Uttech to grab the second spot as the pair engaged in battle for runner-up honors. This left Balog free to pace the final circuits taking the victory. Thiel managed to reach the finish line just ahead of Uttech for second, with Uttech having to settle for third. Sexton had rim rode his way to a fourth place finish followed by Scotty Neitzel who completed the top five finishers. Last evening’s runner-up finisher, Steve Meyer earned sixth. Mike Reinke, Bill Rose, Ben Schmidt and Lance Fassbender completed the top ten finishers. Earlier in the night Rose, Reinke and Neitzel collected heat races.

The planned B-main was not needed after Dave Uttech had the misfortune of expiring a motor. The other notable event of the evening was Hayley Reinke, daughter of Mike Reinke who made her debut in sprint car racing. She took qualifying laps behind the wheel of a machine normally piloted by Russel Borland who had to miss the this event due to other commitments. She qualified the car with a respectable time but opted out of further competition in the program. A total of 25 drivers had signed in for the race program this evening. Balog had topped the qualifying efforts tonight but times were well off the track record. Schmidt turned in the second quickest lap of the evening while Rose turned in the third best qualifying performance. The three event weekend now wraps up as the teams head south to Eagle Valley Speedway in Jim Falls, Wisconsin on Sunday evening July 27th.

The track is a large three-eights mile oval with a unique layout. The high-banked turns are ideal for the Winged Outlaw sprints, which barely have to use the brakes in the corners. The raceway is also unique in the fact that the front stretch goes slightly downhill, while the backstretch is slightly uphill.Balog has captured the last three contests held at the track including last year’s show where he made a late race pass on Brooke Tatnell for the victory.Midwest Modifieds, Street Stocks and Pure Stocks will be joining the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw sprints providing fans with a variety of high speed action.Pit gates are to open at 4:00pm for this year’s show with the spectator gates opening at 4:30pm. Hot laps are to get underway at 5:30pm with racing set to begin at 6:00pm.For ticket pricing information please call the raceway at: 715-382-5367 or consult the track website at www.eaglevalleyspeedway.net

Eagle Valley Speedway is located just north of Jim Falls, WI just off Highway 178. Head north out of town of Highway 178 and turn west (left) onto 150th Avenue.IRA proudly moves continues it’s 2014 season backed by its long time supporting series partners led by title sponsor Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts & Service Centers, and associate series partners Osborn & Son Trucking, TW Metals, Hoosier Tire, Cedar Creek Motorsports, Cummins Onan, and Carriage Auto Body. The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints are a featured member of Racetext.net a website dedicated to bringing fans the best possible coverage of local short track racing.For more information on the IRA Outlaw Sprints check out the tour website at www.irasprints.com or by logging onto the series Facebook page at www.facebook.com/irasprints the series is also on twitter at #IRA_sprints.

Balog is 3-for-3 at ABC in IRA Sprints McFadden wins ‘Challenge,’ Tiffany Hudack gets first win

July 29th, 2014

Ashland, WI, — Bill Balog of Hartland took advantage of two late-race caution flags Saturday night to steal his third straight Interstate Racing Association A-main win in as many visits by the touring sprint car series to the ABC Raceway. Twenty-five of the traveling 410-cubic-inch “outlaw” winged sprints took to the three-eighths-mile red-clay oval on night two of their three-night trek through northern Wisconsin under hot, humid conditions and battled each other and a very
light sprinkle throughout their 30-lap headliner in a program presented by Northern State Bank.

Also part of the AmsOil Dirt Track Series program was the $600-to-win “Super Stock Challenge,” presented by FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating, which went to Ashland’s Shawn McFadden, Jr, while Tiffany Hudack of Ashland completed an historic run in the Six-Cylinders, and Ashland’s Matt Deragon continued his domination in the Pure Stocks.

Balog, who set the fast qualifying time with a lap of 14.728 seconds (92.289 mph) earlier in the program, started the 30-lap A-main on the outside of row 3 and made immediate progress as front-row starters Scott Uttech and Tommy Sexton battled side-by-side in the early going. Sexton won that early discussion and Travis
Whitney moved up into second place, and on lap 3 Whitney moved outside on Sexton for the lead as Balog worked outside on Uttech into third. On lap 7 Balog moved by Sexton into second and began a 19-lap chase of Whitney as very light sprinkles kept the red-clay surface tacky and the action lightning-fast. Behind the lead pair Uttech and Sexton waged a classic war for third, and rookie Scott Thiel tried to keep second-in-series-points Bill Rose from breaking into the top five. By lap 8 Whitney was catching the tail of the field, allowing Balog to close on the leader. On lap 11 Balog threw a slide on Whitney to monemtarily grab the lead, but just as quickly Whitney slipped back by to retain the point. From there Whitney kept at least one back-marker between himself and the six-time defending series
champ for as many laps as he could. Unfortunately for Whitney, his luck ran out when the race’s first caution flag was thrown with just four laps to go, when Jordan Goldberry looped his ride in turn 3. Whitney was completely overwhelmed on the restart by Balog and Uttech, and before the lap was completed Whitney was caught up in a thick pack of cars and spun in turn 4. A disappointed Whitney was pushed to the pits, along with fourth-running Blake Nimee, who was having a terrific run from his tenth starting spot. The final four laps were all Balog’s, who outran a determined Uttech for his series-leading seventh win of the season and second in as many nights, after a last-lap pass gave him the victory on Friday at Antigo. Thiel swiped second from Uttech in the final half-lap, while Sexton and Scott Neitzel completed the top five.

McFadden, who had not won a feature in Ashland since moving up from the track’s Six-Cylinder division after the 2012 season, moved into second place in the WISSOTA Super Stock feature behind outside front-row starter Randy Spacek, shuffling visiting polesitter Rich Bishop back to third. Two laps into the 20-lap run McFadden used a strong inside move on Spacek and took over the lead for good, pulling away to a nearly full-second advantage before debris on the track brought out the race’s first yellow-flag slowdown on lap 4. As McFadden pulled away after the green flag flew again, Cory Casari’s ride came to life, driving hard to the inside for a three-wide pass Dave Flynn and Bishop into fourth. Four laps later Casari made another strong move to get by Ken Truscott for third, and within a lap he used a similar move to edge past Spacek for second. McFadden was well over two seconds up on Casari by then, but that disappeared when Spacek, Truscott and divisional points leader Scott Lawrence – all battling for third at the time, tangled in turn 2 to bring about another race stoppage on lap 11. Lawrence was towed from the track with a damaged car, and Truscott was sent to the back for the restart. Casari stayed with McFadden for most of the back half of the run before McFadden pulled away late, building a 1.2-second lead for his first feature win at Ashland since July 2012. Casari held off a hard-charging Nick Oreskovich – who started dead last on the 13-car grid – while Spacek and Shane Kisling completed the top five. Chris Bretting of FastLane Motorsports distributed ten gift certificates ranging in value from $50 to $350 to the top ten finishers on a random draw. McFadden added a $50 Northern Clearning Inc bonus to his take for the night for posting the fastest lap in the run, with a time of 17.809 seconds.

Hudack became only the second female driver to win a feature at the ABC Raceway after taking the non-stop 15-lap Six-Cylinder feature. Tiffany started inside on the third row and quickly wheeled a fast race car toward the front, as rookie Ethan Beeksma overtook pole starter Forrest Schultz for the early lead. Hudack moved into second within the first five laps as Beeksma built up a lead of over a second-and-a-half. But when Beeksma bobbled on lap 8, Hudack was right there to close in, eventually hugging the inside line to take over on lap 9. Hudack’s advantage was two-thirds of a second with three laps remaining as she protected the bottom groove, but as she caught lapped traffic Beeksma closed the gap, offering a challenge on a couple of occasions but unable to complete a pass. Hudack’s win was the first by a female driver here since Chanda Fjorden-Nord was awarded a WISSOTA Street Stock win in July 2007. Beeksma, Peter Jokinen, points leader Tyler Hudack and Dale Coddington completed the top five. Beeksma was rewarded with the Northern Clearning fast-lap bonus with a circuit of 19.047 seconds, and Schultz gained the $50 bonus for sporting the Raceway’s 50th Anniversary decal on his car after his sixth-place finish matched the random draw.

Deragon needed a last-corner pass of Jeff Christman for his fifth Pure Stock feature win of the season and third in a row. In another green-to-checkered run, Brandle Pupp worked around pole starter Rita Anderson for the initial lead, but two laps later Christman used an inside move to take the lead away. The top five – Christman, Pupp, Terran Spacek, Randy Graham and Deragon, who had worked his way from the fourth row – stayed in tight formation and often swapped positions behind the leader. Just before the mid-point of the 12-lapper Spacek moved by Graham for second, and just after that Pupp’s ride failed him and he fell from the event, with Glenn Dammer taking his place in the top-five dogfight. Late in the run Deragon worked hard to get under Graham and then Spacek, and on the final lap he took a couple shots at the lead. But it was a strong drive to the inside on the final corner that stuck, and he edged Christman for the win by half the length of his car. Spacek was not far off Deragon’s rear bumper in third, and Dammer edged Graham at the line for fourth.

The WISSOTA Modifieds and Midwest Mods will return to action at the ABC Raceway on Saturday night, with the Mid-Mods chasing after an enhanced purse during the “Mid-Mod Madness” special presented by Northern Wisconsin Fence of Phillips and Outlaw Wraps & Apparel of Ashland. Adult admission tickets are just $10, while fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult.

Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, followed by sprint car time trials. Racing is scheduled to start at 7. “Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

ABC Raceway Welcomes IRA Sprints, Offers Big Money to Supers on Saturday

July 26th, 2014

Ashland, WI — During the Summer of 2014, the ABC Raceway’s three-eighths-mil\e red-clay oval has been particularly fast. Single-lap records have been broken in
two of the track’s four electronically-timed divisions during feature races this season. On Saturday night, fans could get a chance to find out just how fast this track can be.

The Northern State Bank of Ashland will present the fourth annual visit by the Interstate Racing Association’s sprint car series. This Midwestern-based traveling
group expects to bring upwards of two dozen drivers to ABC, piloting 1,400-pound winged sprint cars with 410-cubic-inch powerplants that churn out upwards of 900
horsepower, resulting in triple-digit lap speeds. In addition, FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating of Ashland will present its ninth annual Super Stock Challenge, offering an enhanced purse for drivers in the WISSOTA Super Stock division.

“This has become one of the most popular shows on our schedule,” stated ABC Raceway president Kurt Beeksma recently. “Add the high-speed excitement of the IRA sprints with the ultra-competitive Super Stocks and you have a recipe for a great race program.”

As he did for each of the first two visits by the IRA sprints to the northern Wisconsin track, Bill Balog of Brookfield brings the series’ points lead with him
heading into Saturday’s show, barring anything disasterous happening to him during the tour’s race program at the big half-mile in Antigo on Friday. Balog is the
six-time defending IRA champion and had won a series-best five A-mains this season prior to Friday – all consecutive, until his streak was ended in Wilmot last
Saturday by nationally-known championship driver Dale Blaney in a match-up of regional touring series, when the IRA took on the All-Star Circuit of Champions
sprinters.

Other top drivers to watch, should they make the trip north this weekend, include second-in-points Bill Rose; veteran drivers Scott Neitzel, Mike Reinke, and Scott and Dave Uttech; second-generation stars Philip Mock and Kris Spitz; and last year’s top rookie, Russell Borland. Just how fast are these sprint cars? The fastest lap set by any of the ABC Raceway’s regular weekly divisions (Pure Stocks are not electronically timed) was posted on July 5 of this year by Ashland’s Steve Stuart in his WISSOTA Modified, when he toured the red-clay oval in a time of 16.218 seconds. That extrapolates out to an average speed of 83.241 mph.
Jake Redetzke of Eau Claire set the track’s all-time speed record for stock cars with a time of 15.855 seconds, or 85.147 mph, on his way to the 2012 Red Clay
Classic WISSOTA Late Model feature win.

During the IRA’s 2012 visit to Ashland, Balog torched the track during time trials with a lap of 12.382 seconds – or an average speed of 109.029 mph. That was a
mile-and-a-half per hour faster than Reinke’s fast-qualifier lap here the year before.

The IRA usually times its racers during qualifying using a photo-timer system. This year, ABC track officials are toying with the idea of strapping transponders onto the sprint cars. Transponders generate electronic signals that are sent to a computer to keep track of both laps times and a race’s running order. Transponders have been used to score race results for four of ABC’s five regular weekly divisions and every Red Clay Classic since 2008. The sprint car series’ visit to ABC was cut short by wet weather in 2013, but those who run the IRA itinerary have been looking forward to a return to the Wisconsin northwoods. Saturday’s show will be the middle stop of a three-race weekend that concludes with a Sunday night program at Eagle Valley Speedway in Jim Falls. For the Super Stocks, the enhanced purse isn’t the only thing on the line. Scott Lawrence of Superior has parlayed a July 5 feature win and subsequent back-to-back runner-up finishes into an 11-point lead on Cory Casari of Montreal, as he looks to lock up an 11th consecutive divisional points title and 14th championship overall here.

Lawrence is also the two-time defending Super Stock Challenge champion and has won four of the eight previous runnings of this event. He should be well-challenged by the likes of last week’s feature winner, Dave Flynn of Superior, as well as Casari, Nick Oreskovich of Mason, Randy Spacek of Phillips and many others. The Raceway’s Six-Cylinder and Pure Stock divisions will round out the race program with points-paying heats and features. The WISSOTA Modifieds and Midwest Mods will get the night off.

The pit gates will open for the sprint car teams at around 2 pm and for other racers at about 4:30, while the grandstands will open at 5 pm. Adult admission is
$20, fans ages 6-12 get in for $5, and kids under age 6 are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. Hot laps start at 6:15 pm, followed by time-trial
qualifying for the IRA sprint cars. The first heat race of the night should start at around 7.

“Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live from the track on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm on
Saturday. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715)
682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

ABC Raceway Inducts First Class into Hall of Fame

July 22nd, 2014

Ashland, WI- As part of the celebration of its 50th season of operation, the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association paid tribute to several very special men, women and organizations by introducing them as the first-ever inductees into the newly-formed ABC Raceway Hall of Fame during an emotional ceremony during a break in Saturday night’s racing action at the northern Wisconsin dirt track. The Hall of Fame, which has been in the works for over two years, was created to honor and recognize those who built, maintained and raced at what has become one of the most popular and successful short-track stock car racing facilities in the
Upper Midwest.

The inaugural Hall of Fame class – including four retired drivers, three couples and two individuals selected for their volunteer efforts and contributions, and
three specific honorary selections – were chosen based on their involvement since the very beginning of the Association’s existence. Each made significant contributions to the success of the ABC Raceway and to area stock car racing in general, and all exemplified unselfish involvement and contributions and defined
the true spirit of volunteerism that has been the basis of the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association’s success for the past 50 years.

In what is widely considered their rightful place, the late Frank and Verna Brevak were introduced as the very first of the inductees to be presented before a very
supportive and enthusiastic crowd at the ABC Raceway. The first of three Honorary Inductees unanimously chosen by Hall of Fame Selection Committee, Frank & Verna were the original owners of property that the Raceway occupies today; Frank constructed it as the Chequamegon Raceway in 1957 and maintained the grounds and
buildings for many years, while Verna helped with everything from food concessions to ticket sales.

Even after the Brevak family sold the property to the newly-formed Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association on October 31, 1965, both Frank and Verna remained
actively involved with the Raceway and the club right up until their deaths. When Frank passed away in November 2001, friends, relatives and Raceway officials
arranged for his funeral procession to take a final “victory lap” around his beloved race track. Longtime Brevak family friend and Raceway official Weaver
Wherritt best described the impact of the Brevaks by stating, “Without Frank and Verna, we would not (have this race track) today. How many of us would have taken
money saved to build a house for our family and use it to build a race track for the area’s young people to race on and to keep them off the streets?”

Frank and Verna’s son Bob Brevak accepted their induction plaque on their behalf. The Northern State Bank of Ashland has provided financial support for the Racing
Association since 1965, and it is for this reason that it was introduced as an Honorary Inductee. Besides offering a long-time trusted source of banking, NSB
offered the Association the backing of the loan to purchase the track from the Brevak family in 1965. The late Frank Phillips, during his tenure as president of
the Bank, arranged other loans to the club for the purchase and installation of lights in the early 1970s and again in 2008 for the purchase of a new tractor.
Phillips even guaranteed the purse for the track when it held its first-ever Red Clay Classic in 1976. Northern State Bank continues to provide financial services to Association and has become a long-time season sponsor of the races at the ABC Raceway. Current Bank officer Tom Malyuk accepted the honor on the Bank’s behalf.

Always generous in their support and active membership since the Raceway’s earliest days, the Vernon family and their business, Northern Clearing Inc, were also named as Honorary Inductees. Brothers Wayne and George Vernon competed as racers for many of the track’s earliest years of existence, and George’s wife Louise has always been generous in assisting in the concession stands. Later George’s sons Todd, Richard and Craig raced here and took active roles in support of the track,
including sponsorships of several race cars and as a season-long sponsor of the track iteslf. Cousins Tyler Vernon and Colten Vernon currently race as the third
generation to support the Raceway. Northern Clearning has generously donated time, equipment and personnel on many occasions to help with track projects over the past 50 years, and at least three times its crews have assisted with track reconditioning work. The Vernon family has always been first in line to donate when the Raceway staff has needed heavy equipment for larger projects.

George Vernon’s wife received the Hall of Fame commemorative plaque on behalf of the family and the business. Bob Brevak was one of four men to be honored as part of the Class of 2014 in the Retired Driver category. The driver of the popular number 18 was a two-time track champion – in 1968, when the Raceway ran a single division, and again in 1970 in the Late Model division. Bob also served as the Association’s president in 1968-’69. After 16 career feature wins on the red-clay oval, Brevak went on to compete successfully in several national stock car series, such as ARCA and the NASCAR Truck Series; he raced to the ARCA national championship in 1990.

The late Dwaine Erickson was also inducted under the Retired Driver category. “Oulu,” as he was affectionately known, traveled weekly from Superior to win five
track championships – in 1973-’75 in the Super Stock division; and in 1977 ’80 in Late Models. His 44 total feature wins at Ashland still ranks among the top-ten
all-time here. A successful and respected racer throughout the region, he also won Late Model points titles in the former Northwest Racing Circuit in 1977 & again in ’80. He was inducted into the Superior (now AmsOil) Speedway Hall of Fame in 2003. The driver of the number 62 passed away this past June 5 after a long battle with cancer; his wife Mary Erickson was present to accept his Hall of Fame induction. Ron Hmielewski was a long-time racer who competed at the ABC Raceway since its first season. A winner of four career features, “Hemi” was a contributor both as a popular driver as well as a long-time volunteer, Association member, and member of the club’s Board of Directors. He represented the Raceway well while competing at other area tracks and was always considered a front-runner.

Ron was known for his competitive spirit, but also for his willingness to help his fellow racers and to respresent the ABC Raceway in a positive light. Since retiring from racing he has assisted in other aspects of the track’s operation, but in recent years the livery of his familiar black number 55 has since been displayed on his son Ron’s race cars. Bob Root became one of the most successful and influential drivers of the Chequamegon Bay region. The driver of the popular orange-&-black number 37 was a five-time track champion; he was the ABC Raceway’s first-ever champ in 1966 (single division), and then he scored titles in 1973, ’76, ’79 & ’83 in the Late Model class. His 45 feature wins still ranks among the top-eight all-time at the track. When racing away from ABC, Root won the Northwest Racing Circuit’s Late Model points titles in 1973 & ’76, and he also won track championships at Superior, Proctor, MN, and Ironwood, MI, as well as the Modified feature at the 1995 Silver 1000 in Proctor. Root was inducted into the Superior Speedway Hall of Fame after he retired from racing in 2004. He was a local hero to many young race fans, and his positive influence prompted several racers to start their racing careers during his four-plus decades of racing.
Those selected for induction through the Volunteer and Contributor category were recognized for significant positive contributions to the existence and success of the Association and the Raceway. As Hall of Fame Committee spokesman Eric Erickson pointed out, “This category was the most difficult to decide (who to select), as there have been literally dozens of hard-working people who have given so much of their time and efforts, and there’s only so much space we could come up with for this year’s class. “Our intention is to recognize everyone eventually, but it will take some time.” Dennis Asbach got involved with the Racing Association through his marriage to his wife Jane, whose family had been part of the club since the beginning. Jane is the person credited with coming up with the name “Red Clay Classic” for the track’s big season-ending event.

Dennis became club treasurer in 1972 and served in that capacity for 11 years, then assisted for another four years. He also served or assisted as treasurer for the Red Clay Classic for 22 years, and he served many terms on the Association’s Board of Directors. In all, Dennis has served the Association for over 40 years as a trusted, responsible volunteer of high integrity. For Ron and Jeanne Hmielewski, the ABC Raceway has been a family affair, as both have been involved with the Association since its beginnings, and over the years each of their children – Karen, Sue, Ron and Donna – have contributed significantly in one form or another as well. Ron and Jeanne have each served terms on the Board of Directors, with Ron acting as one of original members of the Board in 1965. He has assisted in nearly every aspect of running the club and maintaining the racing facility ever since.

Jeanne has worked at the track for 46 years, serving as the club’s secretary and its first publicist early on, and in more recent years as the Raceway’s chief
scorer and points director. She has also received the Raceway’s Chuck Anderson Award for outstanding volunteer service and its Outstanding Service Award for her
committment to the organization, and was recognized by the National Race Promoters Hall of Fame in the early 1990s.

Bob and Sandy Root have also been involved in the Association since its beginning. Bob was directly involved in the purchase of the property now known as the ABC
Raceway and was elected as the club’s first president in 1965, serving in that capacity at three different times for a total of five years. He also served as its
vice-president in 1977 and was voted to the Board of Directors for at least nine years. Sandy, who passed away a few years back, acted as the club’s secretary for ten years and as Red Clay Classic treasurer for another eight years. She was a detail-oriented person who was instrumental in helping to keep the Association’s
books in order for many years. Additionally, Bob and Sandy’s trucking business donated equipment to the club and assisted with its transportation needs for many
years, and both were enthusiastic ambassadors of the ABC Raceway wherever they went. A member of the Association since 1969, Bob “Weaver” Wherritt has served as club president twice for a total of eight years, and was vice-president three times for a total of 15 years, including for the past 11 years. He has served as a Board member for a total of 40 years – a period of time unmatched by any other active Association member.

Even to this day, Weaver is eagerly involved in the day-to-day operations of the track. He has chaired or worked on a number of important committees for the
organization, and he has received a great deal of recognition for his efforts, including the Outstanding Service Award, ABC Raceway President’s Award, and Chuck
Anderson Award, and he was recognized by the National Race Promoters Hall of Fame. He is a highly-respected leader and representative of the ABC Raceway. Earl and Chris Zar have been members of the Association since the very beginning. Earl joined the club in 1965 and was later elected to the Board of Directors before
serving as Association vice-president for two years and president for five years in the late 1980s. Earl has worked at the track in nearly every capacity, from
managing the adult-beverage consession to working as part of the infield safety and technical inspection crew.

Chris has run the adult-beverage concession for over 40 years and continues to do so to this day. Their children have also been involved with the track, with son
Eric learning track preparation directly from Frank Brevak for several years, and daughter Lisa helping in every was from selling 50/50 tickets to running the
grandstand concession and eventually helping her mom in the “beer stand.” A banquet attended by the inductees and their families was held at Zar’s south of Ashland on Saturday afternoon. The ABC Raceway will soon construct a display for the names of its Hall of Fame inductees at the track.

Spacek Speeds to ABC ‘Mod Mayhem’ Feature Win

July 21st, 2014

A terrific night – thanks to all who had a hand in it!
Nick

Ashland, WI– Phillips’ Jeff Spacek gained an $800 paycheck after Saturday night’s “Modified Mayhem” feature at the ABC Raceway, highlighting a program during which the track honored its first-ever Hall of Fame inductees. A windy, overcast afternoon turned clear and muggy after nightfall as 80 racers competed on another fast, racy track during the five-division AmsOil Dirt Track Series program presented by the NAPA Auto Parts Stores of Ashland and Washburn.

Prior to the features, the first 12 inductees of the ABC Raceway Hall of Fame were introduced to an enthusiastic crowd. Three of the enshrined – the late Frank and Verna Brevak, who built the original race track; Northern State Bank; and the Vernon family and their business, Northern Clearing, Inc – were chosen as unanimous Honorary Inductees by the Hall of Fame’s Selection Committee. Also included were four in the Retired Driver category – Bob Brevak, Ron Hmielewski, Bob Root, and the late Dwaine “Oulu” Erickson – and five in the Volunteers and Contributors category – Dennis Asbach, Ron and Jeannie Hmielewski, Bob Root and his late wife Sandy, Weaver Wherritt, and Earl and Chris Zar.

Spacek, who started on the front row, beat polesitter Rick Rivord through the first pair of corners and, with no caution flags to slow down the 20-lap WISSOTA Modified headliner, was never challenged, building a 1.5-second lead within the first three laps. Behind him, however, were a series of serious dogfights for position, including one for second place with Kevin Eder and division points leader Steve Stuart right on Rivord’s tail.

On lap 4 Eder worked inside to take second away from Rivord, and then Stuart duplicated the move for third one lap later. For the next ten laps the two Ashland pilots put on a thrilling side-by-side battle, which allowed Spacek to stretch his lead to over two-and-a-half seconds. Spacek’s only concern came on lap 10, when he closed on backmarker Zach Pagels. Not being able to pass the “big Mod” rookie, Spacek allowed Eder to close to within 1.26 seconds, but once Spacek cleared Pagels he sped away again and rebuilt his ocmmanding lead. Pagels posed a problem for Eder and Stuart as well when they caught him with three laps left, and when both tried to clear the slower car they bumped each other hard. Stuart righted his ride first and took over the runner-up spot before Eder could regain control of his car, and Stuart held on to the position the rest of the way. Spacek’s second straight win and third overall on the season here was also his 56th at Ashland, moving him into sole possession of third place on the track’s all-time win list. Eder’s third-place paycheck was bolstered by earning the Northern Clearing Inc-sponsored fast-lap bonus with a time of 16.630 seconds during the run, while visiting Jesse Glenz drew close late to finish fourth ahead of Scott Hudack.

Dave Flynn of Superior followed up an impressive feature-winning run at AmsOil Speedway on Friday night with his second win of the season here Saturday in the WISSOTA Super Stock 20-lap main event. Flynn also started outside on the front row and was scored as the leader on every lap, but unlike Spacek he was seriously challenged for the lead throughout.

The first 18 laps ran off non-stop as Flynn tried to pull away from a fierce battle for second between Cory Casari, Nick Oreskovich and Scott Lawrence, all of whom got by pole starter Ken Truscott within the first few laps. On lap 6 Oreskovich and Lawrence moved into second and third, and within a lap Lawrence overtook Oreskovich and set his sights on Flynn, who had built up a half-second lead.

In just two laps Lawrence eliminated the deficit and worked Flynn over, moving to both the inside and outside lanes in an effort to shake the leader loose. But Flynn kept his cool and fended off every move offered by the ten-time defending champ. Lawrence eventually settled for following in Flynn’s tire tracks for a while as the leaders drew up on slower traffic, and Casari – who took third on lap 11 – and Oreskovich copied the lead pair’s line. With just two laps remaining Flynn and Lawrence tried to get by the slower Myron Basina, and Lawrence took a shot at the lead. But before the lap was completed Basina bobbled, causing the cars of fifth-place Shane Kisling and sixth-running Wayne Stricker to break loose and tag each other hard enough to knock both from the event. With the green-white-checkered restart based the last completed lap, Flynn resumed from the point held on for a car-length advantage over Lawrence at the checkers and his second feature win here this season. Casari and Oreskovich came home a close third and fourth, and Randy Spacek finished fifth for the fourth straight week here. DJ Keeler came home ninth and, by virtue of a ramdom draw and displaying the Raceway’s 50th Anniversary decal on his car, earned a $100 bonus.

Divisional points leader Mike Truscott has had the dominant WISSOTA Midwest Modified at Ashland this season, winning five of the first six features here to date. But Truscott got caught up in traffic and flipped his car violently during his heat race, leaving this week’s feature up for grabs.

Through some very hard work, Truscott and his crew were amazingly able to get the car ready for the 15-lap A-main, and he wheeled it from a tenth-row starting spot to a sixth-place finish. But it was first-night visitor Nick Koehler from Bloomer who came away with his second career win here. After a first-corner six-car pile-up, rookie Brad Seavers began an impressive run from the pole by battling with Tyler Vernon for the first couple of laps before scooting away to a three-quarter-second lead. Mickey Nosser took second away from Vernon on lap 4 and closed on Seavers, and just after Koehler moved past Vernon for third on lap 6, John Kallas and Tanner Byholm got together to bring out the race’s second yellow flag. That touched off a series of stoppages for a variety of reasons, but in between the slowdowns Nosser passed Seavers for the lead, and Koehler grabbed second. Then, just after Koehler passed Nosser for the lead on lap 8, debris was spotted on the track, but Koehler had the lead for good after that restart. Cody Carlson’s spin with three laps left gave Nosser a last chance to threaten the leader, but Ryan Adamzak took advantage and swiped second, allowing Koehler to slip away to a half-second edge at the stripe. Seavers held on for a solid fourth-place finish, while Tanner Hicks also impressed by coming home fifth. Nosser claimed the other Northern Clearing Inc fast-lap bonus after posting a circuit of 17.587 seconds during the run.

Like the Mid-Mod main, the Six-Cylinder 15-lap feature was plagued by caution flags, but Hayward’s Dale Coddington patiently persevered over the back half of the run to score his second win of the summer and 19th overall here. Coddington, who failed to start last Saturday’s feature for mechanical reasons, started outside on row 4 but quickly sliced his way through the field into second place within just four laps behind Pagels, who started just ahead of him on row 3. On lap 6 Coddington worked down low in an attempt to take the lead, but the first of a succession of caution-flag slowdowns put Pagels back out front. Coddington did take the lead within a lap after the restart, and he stayed there after a stoppage on lap 8 for points leader Tyler Hudack’s spin and three more slowdowns within lap 9 for various spins.

Duane Dunbar secured second when Pagels’ car incurred a flat tire and faded, bringing Tiffany Hudack along into third. Over the final six laps the race stayed green long enough for Coddington to extend his final margin of victory to 1.66 seconds over Dunbar and Tiffany Hudack, while 13th-starting Peter Jokinen worked his way to fourth, and Tyler Hudack recovered to claim fifth Ashland’s Matt Deragon held off a late charge by Glenn Dammer to claim his fourth Pure Stock feature win of the season. Deragon worked his way up from the third row into second place within just two laps, and after two more circuits he used an outside pass to get around Jeff Christman for the lead, with Dammer following him into second.

Fourth-place Terran Spacek’s spin on lap 5 was the only delay in the 12-lap finale, after which Deragon and Dammer sped away to decide the finish between themselves. Deragon held off Dammer by a car-length to pad his points lead, while Christman, Steve Udeen and a resurgent Spacek completed the top five.

Prior to the race program, Mod driver Bill Byholm of Glidden was severly injured when a door from his hauler fell on him. He was life-flighted to Duluth, MN, and treated for broken ribs and an injured lung. His son Tanner was competing for the last time on this night, as he is scheduled to report for US Marine training this week.

The Interstate Racing Association’s 410 outlaw winged sprint cars will bring triple-digit speeds to the ABC Raceway on Saturday night, in a program presented by Northern State Bank. Also, FastLane Motorsports and Custom Powdercoating will present its annual “Super Stock Challenge,” with the track’s Six-Cylinder and Pure Stock classes adding to the program. Adult admission is $20, fans ages 6-12 get in for $5, and kids under age 6 are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult.

Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, followed by sprint car time trials. Racing is scheduled to start at 7. “Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Hall of Fame Ceremonies, ‘Mod Mayhem’ at ABC Raceway this Saturday

July 19th, 2014

Ashland, WI — On Saturday night, the ABC Raceway will honor some very special people, while also giving the WISSOTA Modifieds a chance to make a little extra cash. The first-ever group of drivers, volunteers and contributors will be formally inducted into the new ABC Raceway Hall of Fame during intermission of Saturday’s five-division race program, presented by the NAPA Auto Parts Stores of Ashland and Washburn.

The inaugural class of Hall of Fame inductees include four outstanding former drivers, three couples and two individuals who have made significant contributions to the Raceway’s success over the past 50 years, and three honorary inductees who were instrumental in giving the venerable red-clay oval its start and help it become one of the great success stories in short-track racing in the Upper Midwest. “There is so much history, so many great memories, and so many incredible people that have made the ABC Raceway what it is today,” explained Hall of Fame spokesman Eric Erickson. “As an organization, we needed to create this in order to give the people who have done so much the recognition they deserve.

“We know there are many deserving folks who have been left out from this year’s class, but we have every intention over the next few years to pay tribute to all those who have been instrumental in making the ABC Raceway the success that it has become.”

The first-year class of inductees will include former drivers Bob Brevak, Ron Hmielewski, Bob Root, and the late Dwaine “Oulu” Erickson, while those to be inducted under the category of volunteers and contributors include Dennis Asbach, Ron and Jeanne Hmielewski, Weaver Wherritt, Earl & Chris Zar, and Bob Root and his late wife Sandy.

The Hall of Fame Selection Committee also felt that it was important to include three honorary inductees who were significantly involved in the initial formation of the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association and creation of the ABC Raceway – the Northern State Bank; the family of the late George Vernon and their business, Northern Clearing Inc; and the late Frank and Verna Brevak, who sacrificed so much to build the facility and make it go. An invitation-only luncheon will be held Saturday afternoon for the inductees and their guests, and the formal introduction of the Class of 2014 will take place during intermission of the evening’s race program.

Also on the docket will be the season’s second special event highlighting one of the Raceway’s regular weekly divisions – the third annual “Modified Mayhem.” An enhanced purse will be offered to the track’s top division, which could attract a number of drivers who don’t frequent the track mid-season to stop in and challenge the Raceway’s regulars.

Those looking to take home the extra money on this special night include Jeff Spacek of Phillips, who sits tied for third on the track’s all-time win list after picking up feature win number 55 last Saturday night; and Ashland’s Steve Stuart, who has driven a lightning-fast car to the top of the Raceway’s “big mod” points standings and is the defending “Mayhem” winner.

The WISSOTA Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds, and the ABC Raceway’s own Six-Cylinder and Pure Stock divisions will also be on hand to round out a complete race program.

Hot laps start at 6:15 pm, and the first green flag of the night will drop at around 7. The grandstand and pit gates open at 5 pm. Adult admission tickets (ages 13 & older) are just $10, while fans ages 12 and under are welcome in for free when accompanied by a paying adult.

“Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live from the track on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm on Saturday. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715)682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Truscott, Hudack Stay Hot; Spacek, Kisling, Deragon Score Wins at ABC

July 14th, 2014

Ashland, WI — Over a hundred kids took to the red-clay oval for the annual bike races, while eighty-five racers put on a fast-paced stock car program Saturday night at the ABC Raceway. Chicago Iron & Supply of Ashland presented the sixth AmsOil Dirt Track Series program of the season under cloudy but non-threratening skies on another smooth, wide, lightning-fast track. Jeff Spacek of Phillips moved back into fourth place on the Raceway’s all-time feature win list with a strong performance in the WISSOTA Modified A-main, while visiting Shane Kisling of Sarona held on for the WISSOTA Super Stock win. Mike Truscott of Chippewa Falls continued to dominate in the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds, and Tyler Hudack of Ashland strengthened his hold on the top spot in the Six-Cylinders, as did Ashland’s Matt Deragon in the Pure Stocks.

Spacek, who started inside on row 4 in the 20-lap Mod main, waded through heavy traffic to eventually get to the front, as Steve Lavasseur held the early lead after a lap 1 tangle with pole starter Rick Rivord. Brian Mikkonen worked around Bill Byholm on that restart to take second, and he stayed in Lavasseur’s tire tracks as the remainder of the first half of the run stayed green. Scott Hudack took tird from Byholm on lap 4, and Steve Stuart moved into fourth two circuits later, but Spacek used an inside move to steal fourth away on lap 8 – just two laps prior to Paul Niznik’s spin on lap 10. That stoppage induced a series of restarts over the next four laps which resulted in several plot twists. After debris on the back straight killed the first attempt to go green, Mikkonen worked a high-side move to take the lead from Lavasseur, while Stuart got a run on Hudack to take third. Then Stuart got alongside Lavasseur to challenge for second, but contact between the two dropped more debris on the track and sent Stuart into the pits with a flat tire.

On the lap 12 restart Spacek snuck past Lavasseur for second, and after a caution slowdown for Zack Pagels’ spin, Spacek dove inside on Mikkonen for the lead on lap 14, while another visiting driver, Darrell Nelson, took third. One final stoppage, for Bill Byholm’s stalled ride on the front straight with four to go, put Nelson and Mikkonen in position to challenge for the win, but Spacek sped away to his 55th career feature win in Ashland and second of the season. Nelson trailed by just over two seconds at the checkers, while Mikkonen, Jody Bellefeuille and Lavasseur rounded out the top five.

Kisling, in only his second visit to ABC this season, took the immediate lead in the Super Stock 20-lapper and stayed there despite a determined effort by Scott Lawrence. Kisling – the only one of Saturday night’s feature winners to start on the front row – beat pole-starter Don Muzzy through the first turns and sped out to the early advantage, while Dave Flynn and Cory Casari quickly moved up to second and third, respectively.

On lap 2 a high-flying Curt Myers lost the handle and tagged the turn 2 guardrail, ending his night, but from there the balance of the run clicked off uninterrupted. On lap 3 Flynn bobbled coming off turn 4, allowing Casari and Lawrence to slip past, and over laps 6 through 8 Lawrence and Casari swapped second place until Lawrence’s outside pass stuck to take over the spot for good.

As Kisling and Lawrence ran off to decide the win, Casari posted solid laps to retain third ahead of Flynn, while Wayne Stricker kept Randy Spacek at bay for fifth. Kisling’s lead was just over a second at mid-race, but Lawrence continued to chip away until the deficit was less than a quarter-second as the lead pair came up on slower traffic with five laps remaining. Kisling slipped by backmarker Myron Basina a little easier than Lawrence did, and that was enough to secure his sixth career feature win here. Lawrence’s effort moves him into the Super Stock points lead at ABC for the first time this season. Casari and Flynn held firm to third and fourth, while Spacek eventually got by Stricker for fifth. Truscott again proved his prowess in the Mid-Mod main event, pulling up from the third row and taking control just after mid-race for his 16th win of 2014 and his fifth in six nights of racing in Ashland.

Jeff Klopstein fended off a furious effort by polestarter Ryan Adamzak for the lead in the early stages of the 15-lapper, even after Bill Muhlig’s stalled car brought out the caution flag on lap 2. But when Paul Suzik came up to challenge Adamzak for second on lap 4, Truscott worked the low groove to edge ahead of Suzik for third, then stayed low to slip by Adamzak for second on the next circuit. Klopstein became Truscott’s next victim on lap 7, as the track points leader stuck to the low line around the track. Two tours later Adamzak copied Truscott’s move to get by Klopstein for second, just before Brad Seavers’ spin slowed the pace.

As Adamzak, Klopstein and Suzik tussled for position, Truscott pulled away to a one-second lead with four laps remaining. Then first-nighter Carey LePage’s ride ground to a halt to bring the field back to the leader’s rear push-bar for one last restart, but Truscott handled it well, romping off to a 1.2-second advantage for his 11th ABC Raceway Mid-Mod feature win – the most in track history in that division.

Just after the last restart, Suzik used a strong inside move to take second away from Adamzak at the pay window, and Cody Carlson worked hard to eventually overcome Klopstein for fourth in the closing laps.

Tyler Hudack scored his fourth Six-Cylinder feature win of the season as he, too, clawed his way through traffic from a fourth-row start. Aaron Mashlan set the early pace in the 15-lap run, with Zack Pagels, Hudack and Ethan Beeksma quickly getting by polesitter Colten Vernon into the top five. Pagels followed Mashlan until lap 3, when he worked an inside pass for the lead, but on the next go-around Hudack took control for good with an inside move of his own. The pace slowed up for a bit on lap 5, when Vernon’s loose racer spun coming out of turn 2 and was clipped by Duane Dunbar’s ride. Vernon’s night didn’t get any better, as on each of the two subsequent restart attempts he was involved in spins. But the final ten laps stayed under green, as Hudack stretched his lead with every lap until his final margin of victory was a commanding 1.87 seconds.

Rookie Beeksma was impressive on this night, as he took second place away from Pagels and Mashlan on the final restart and stayed there for a career-best finish. behind Pagels in third, Dunbar worked his way to a fourth-place effort just ahead of Tiffany Hudack.

A little mayhem on the first lap of the Pure Stock nightcapper saw Glenn Dammer tag the back-straight wall, causing several cars to scramble and Jeff Christman to spin. Then, after a lap under green, Chris Johnson spun. But from there the 12-lapper was anybody’s race until Deragon pulled away late and outran a charging Terran Spacek for his third win of the season. Deragon worked the outside line to get around Randy Graham and Tim Carbon and move into third behind brothers Andy and Steve Udeen. Then the 2012 track champ continued to work his way around the lead pair until he had the point – just prior to the race’s final stoppage for Brandle Pupp’s stalled ride collecting Johnson and Christman on lap 3.

The Udeen boys never let Deragon get too far from their sights, as each took a turn at taking the lead away. But just before mid-race Spacek slipped past Steve Udeen for third, and Chad Carlson followed into fourth a lap later. It took three more laps before Spacek finally grabbed second from Andy Udeen, and over the final three laps the youngster gained on the leader but could get no closer than two car-lengths at the checkered flag. Carlson, Steve Udeen, and Andy Udeen came home third through fifth.

The Northern Clearing Inc fast-lap bonuses went to race winners Truscott in the Mid-Mods (17.089 seconds) and Tyler Hudack in the Sixes (18.322).

Trophies were presented to the bike race winners in each of the four different age groups, and each participant received a medal and ribbon and a Dairy Queen gift certificate from Chicago Iron & Supply.

Next Saturday night will be very special for the ABC Raceway, as it formally presents its first inductees into its newly-formed Hall of Fame. In addition, the NAPA Auto Parts stores of Ashland and Washburn will present its “Modified Madness” program to highlight its top division. Adult tickets are just $10, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult.

Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, and racing is set to start at 7. “Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, .

Kids Invited to Race Bikes on ABC’s Red Clay this Saturday

July 11th, 2014

Ashland, WI — Last Saturday night fifty lucky young race fans won nice, shiny new bicycles at the ABC Raceway.

This Saturday night is their chance to get them a little dirty.

The popular annual Kids’ Bike Races, presented by Chicago Iron & Supply of Ashland, will be part of this weekend’s program at the venerable stock car racing track just south of Ashland.

“It’s a chance for the kids to get out and race their bikes on the same track that their heroes race their cars on,” said Raceway president Kurt Beeksma recently. “We’ve been holding this event for many years, a lot of kids come out, and it’s always fun. “Some of our current stock car racers have competed in our bike races in years past. Who knows? We might just see one of our stars of tomorrow out here on a bike on Saturday night.”

The competitors will be separated into several age groups to make things fair, with special prizes for all participants. The bike races will be held during intermission of the overall program.

For the “big kids” and their race cars, last weekend’s program marked the halfway point of the 2014 campaign. That usually means that both the weather and the on-track action will start to heat up.

Neil Adamzak of Ashland dusted off his Six-Cylinder for the first time all season and edged Tiffany Hudack by mere feet to win his second career “Summer Sizzler” special for that division. The race was the first of the special events scheduled for each of the Raceway’s weekly divisions.

Adamzak was not the only first-time winner on the season, however, as Superior’s Scott Lawrence finally scored his first WISSOTA Super Stock checkered flag of ’14 on Saturday. The ten-time defending track champion seemed to have rid his racer of its early-season gremlins and ran away to the win in familiar Lawrence fashion.

The other three feature winners – Ashland’s Steve Stuart, Mike Truscott of Chippewa Falls, and Duluth, MN’s Glenn Dammer – put up repeat performances. Stuart walked off with his third straight WISSOTA Modified win and broke his single-lap time record in the process, while solidifying his hold at the top of that division’s points standings.

Truscott’s performance in the WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature resulted in his track-best fourth win of the season, despite getting caught up in two early-race accidents. Truscott is enjoying a dream season, as he has chalked up 15 total wins in a little over two-dozen starts in 2014 as of press time – good enough for second place in WISSOTA’s national points for that class.

Dammer has made the best of his three appearances on the track at which he won his first career points title, back in 2007. He has run three of the five shows held at ABC so far and has a third-place effort and now back-to-back wins over the past two weekends, and he has quickly climbed into the top ten in the Pure Stock standings. With their wins Saturday, Stuart, Lawrence and Truscott punched earned invitations to qualify for a starting spot in the prestigious invitation-only AmsOil Race of Champions, to be held during the WISSOTA 100 weekend in Huron, SD, in mid-September.

Saturday night’s program gets started with hot laps at 6:15 pm, and the first green flag of the night will drop at around 7. The grandstand and pit gates will open at 5 pm. Adult admission tickets (ages 13 & older) are just $10, while fans ages 12 and under are welcome in for free when accompanied by a paying adult.

“Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live from the track on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm on Saturday. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715)682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Adamzak Scores ‘Summer Sizzler’ Win at ABC Stuart, Truscott, Dammer repeat; Lawrence gets 1st win of ’14

July 8th, 2014

Ashland, WI,– Neil Adamzak of Ashland dragged out his racer for the first time this season and it paid off, as he won the eighth annual Six-Cylinder “Summer
Sizzler” at the ABC Raceway on Saturday night.

A season-high 89 cars registered for AmsOil Dirt Track Series racing action on a warm, windy summer evening, with storm clouds moving around the area but again
avoiding the northern Wisconsin red-clay oval. Other parts of a very busy program included the AmsOil Race of Champions qualifying features for the three WISSOTA-sanctioned divisions and a 50-bike giveaway that drew a huge number of young fans to the track.

Adamzak – who had not run at all this year but has been a regular for each of his previous seven seasons – started the 15-lap feature from the outside of row 2 and
quickly worked his way around pole starter Forrest Schultz into second behind division points leader Tyler Hudack. Adamzak pulled alongside Hudack to edge ahead
into the lead on lap 3, while Tyler’s sister Tiffany Hudack took third away from Schultz two circuits later. A get-together between Colten Vernon and Adam Traaholt on lap 6 sparked a long series of caution flag-interrupted laps over the remainder of the race, causing the lead pack to remain tightly grouped. On each of the next few restarts Tiffany Hudack threatened to nose ahead of Tyler for second, but each time a spin or wreck spoiled her efforts. And on each restart Tyler got an inside run on Adamzak for the lead, but Adamzak used the high line to maintain his momentum and hold a tenuous lead. A total of five restarts over the course of six scored laps slowed the overall pace, but Adamzak overcame every challenge. Before the final yellow flag was thrown – on lap 11, for Jeremy Lindquist’s spin – Tiffany Hudack was scored in second, and Coddington was a nose ahead of Tyler Hudack for third at the scoring stripe. Tiffany opted to restart on the inside of row 2, putting Coddington to the outside of that row and Tyler behind his sister for the restart. Coddington made a run but couldn’t complete a pass of Tiffany for second, as Adamzak held on for the $650 win – his second in the special event for this division – by eight one-hundredths of a second. Behind Tiffany Hudack and Coddington were Tyler Hudack and first-nighter Peter Jokinen. Johnson Flower Shop of Ashland presented a floral arrangement to the winner in Victory Lane.

In the first of the three AmsOil Race of Champions qualifying features, Mike Truscott of Chippewa Falls continued his winning ways with his second WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature win in as many nights, his fourth in five weeks in Ashland, and his 14th overall on the season. Truscott, who started inside on row 5, was caught up in two different incidents, as this 15-lap A-main was also disrupted by several caution-flag stoppages and one roll-over. A three-car mess on the opening lap was followed by Dan Melton’s car flipping after a suspension failure and landing on its roof. After pole starter John Kallas tried to slip away again on that restart, third-place Brad Seavers spun in front of the vast majority of the field, collecting over two-thirds of the 24-car field in the aftermath, including Truscott. Kallas again pulled away slightly from Paul Suzik and Kent Baxter, but just as Baxter was making a move for second his car slowed, causing the field to scatter to avoid, but Truscott clipped the stopped Baxter car. After safety crews inspected the damage, Truscott continued. Over the next ten green-flag laps Kallas held off Suzik, while Truscott quickly picked his way through the field and into the top five. On lap 7 he slipped past Suzik for second while running nearly three-quarters of a second behind the leader, but by the next lap he was passing Kallas for the point, and from there even a lap 11 spin couldn’t keep him from the win. Kallas held on for second ahead of Paul Niznik, while Cole Spacek and Cody Carlson completed the top five.

After getting shut out of Victory Lane over the first four nights run here this season, ten-time defending WISSOTA Super Stock champion Scott Lawrence of Superior finally got his first win of the season in his heat race and followed it up with his 54th career ABC Raceway win, which is tied for fourth all-time here. Lawrence started alongside polesitter Shawn McFadden Jr and beat him through the first turns for the initial lead, and he never gave up the top spot after that, extending his advantage to as much as a second-and-a-half at times over the course of the 20-lap main event. The race was only slowed by two caution flags, with the first coming out on lap 5 when visitor Terry Kroening’s rear axle broke, causing his car to nearly flip in turn 1. Wayne Stricker drew up behind the lead pair after the restart and stayed right with McFadden and Lawrence drew away over the next three green-flag laps. After first-nighter Mark Smith’s spin slowed the race for the final time, Lawrence held off a spirited effort by McFadden to wrestle the lead away on the restart, but Lawrence held his ground and eventually pulled away to a 1.4-second win to break the ice on his 2014 season in Ashland. Nick Oreskovich came up to swipe third away from Stricker a couple laps after the last restart, but Stricker reclaimed the spot a lap later and came home a close third behind McFadden, with Oreskovich right on their tails. Randy Spacek ran in the top five throughout most of the event and came home fifth.

In the WISSOTA Modified 20-lap headliner, Ashland’s Steve Stuart continued his dominance with his third straight feature win of the season. Although Steve Lavasseur grabbed the early lead from the pole, it didn’t take long before Stuart moved up from the second row into the runner-up position by overtaking Scott Hudack on lap 2. A lap late Al Uotinen got into the mix by taking third away from Hudack, but Hudack took the position back just before Rick Rivord’s spin on lap 4. A lap after the restart Stuart threaded the needle between Hudack and Lavasseur and sped away by lap 9 to a 2.4-second margin on the battle for second, which now involved Uotinen and Jeff Spacek. Uotinen had just trimmed Stuart’s advantage to under two seconds on lap 12 when Zack Pagels’ spin brought out the caution flag, but after four circuits back under green Stuart reconstructed a 1.7 second cushion as Uotinen fended off one last charge by Spacek. The 24th win of Stuart’s career included a track-record lap of 16.218 seconds and ended with a 2.3-second margin of victory over Uotinen and Spacek, while Hudack held on for fourth ahead of a resurgent Kevin Eder. With their wins, Stuart, Lawrence and Truscott earned invitations to attempt to qualify for the prestigious AmsOil Race of Champions event during the WISSOTA 100 race weekend in Huron, SD, in mid-September.

After going seven seasons without a feature win in Ashland, Glenn Dammer of Duluth, MN, ran a carbon-copy of his Pure Stock feature run from a week ago and raced to a second-straight victory. After Tim Carbon spun to slow the opening of the 12-lap run, first-night visitor Steve Udeen grabbed the early lead ahead of Chad Nikstad, who subsequently spun a lap later. Udeen then spent the next two laps trying to outrun another visitor, Austin Blom, but Dammer followed Blom into third and then, on consecutive laps, passed Blom and Udeen to become the leader. Riding the outside groove – just as he had done the Saturday before – Dammer eventually pulled to an eight car-length lead on Blom, while Udeen fell back into a battle for third with Terran Spacek, from which Spacek was eventually successful. Dammer’s win was the tenth of his career here, while Blom drove home to a solid second-place performance ahead of Spacek. Udeen was passed in the final corner for fourth by Matt Deragon, who started dead last on the 14-car grid, but Udeen was later rewarded as the fifth-place finish and the ABC Raceway 50th Anniversary decal on his car earned him a $50 bonus in a random pre-race drawing. Along with Stuart, Lawrence also claimed a Northern Clearing Inc fast-lap bonus with his posting of a 16.899-second lap in the Super Stock feature, which was just four one-hundredths of a second off the track record for that class.

Several generous individuals and groups donated toward the 50-bike giveaway that was on-going throughout the race program. The ABC Raceway extends its appreciation to Vernon Racing, Northern Wisconsin Fence, Nick and Cheryl Gima, CRC Motorsports and Truscott Racing, TNT Racing and Tiffany and Tyler Hudack, All-Performance Racing, Luger Racing, Weaver Wherritt and Bobby Wherritt, the Raceway’s “front gate crew,” Dave Boullion and Charles, the Deragon and Pupp race teams, One-on-One Hair Design, Hmielewski Racing, Udeen Excavating, Lake Shore Sales and Service, and Jerry and Joanne O’Brien for their contributions to the bike giveaway.

Next Saturday night the ABC Raceway will host its annual kids’ bike races, presented by Chicago Iron & Supply of Ashland. Adult admission tickets are just $10, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, and racing is set to start at 7. “Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, .

Stuart, Truscott, Hudack Stay Hot at ABC Oreskovich scores first of year; first win for Dammer since ’07

July 2nd, 2014

Ashland, WI,– Steve Stuart, Mike Truscott and Tyler Hudack all solidified their early-season points advantages with clean sweeps of their respective divisional heat and feature races during the “50 Years of Jamming the Stands Night” action at the ABC Raceway on Saturday.

The fast-paced AmsOil Dirt Track Series race program, presented by Heartland Communications Group and WBSZ, 93.3 FM, included 80 competitors on another fast, smooth track. The show started under sunny skies with temperatures in the upper 80s and ended in well under two-and-a-half hours.

Prior to the on-track action, dozens of former track workers and drivers who’ve contributed to stock car racing in the Chequamegon Bay area over the past 50 years were on hand to enjoy special tours of the facility and even partake in some of the race night activities. Former flagmen Randy Harvey and Tom Koleski each officiated over a Six-Cylinder heat race, and former announcer Gary LaPean gave one of the WISSOTA Modified heat races his popular “send-off.”

Stuart, of Ashland, was red-hot again as he blew away the field in the WISSOTA Mod feature, staying within sight of the leader before making his move for the lead on a late restart. Brian Mikkonen led the 20-lap A-main from the pole and had one of his best runs since moving into the “big Mods” while fending off a determined Al Uotinen by hugging the bottom groove throughout the first 11 laps.

Stuart moved to the upper lane five laps into the run and slipped around Steve Lavasseur into third place, with Jeff Spacek following into fourth. Stuart and Spacek closed on the lead pair, with Stuart about to make a move around Uotinen for second, just before Zack Pagels slid off the turn 1 pit exit and stopped in a precarious spot, bringing out the first of two caution flags in the run. Lavasseur stole fourth from Spacek on the restart, but Spacek got him back a lap later, just before Rick Rivord and Lavasseur got together on the back straight, causing Lavasseur to spin into the infield for the second stop.

Stuart shot low out of turn 2 on the restart and nabbed the lead, and with Mikkonen’s car losing some grip off the corners Uotinen took over second. Uotinen kept the pressure on until Stuart eventually pulled away to a 1.25-second advantage at the final stripe for his second straight win and 23rd of his career here, with Mikkonen, Spacek and Pat Cook completing the top five.

Truscott continued his dominance in Ashland with his third feature win in four shows here. Like Stuart, the Chippewa Falls speedster worked up quickly from a fourth-row start to move into third behind Paul Suzik and Mickey Nosser, and by lap 5 the lead trio were well ahead of John Kallas and the balance of the field.

The leaders caught a couple of backmarkers on lap 6 but made their way through cleanly just before Ryan Adamzak spun to slow the pace. Truscott took advantage on the green to work a low pass into the lead on the restart, and after rookie Ryan Barningham then blew his motor and crawled to a stop for the second race stoppage, Truscott flew away over the final eight non-stop laps to his tenth career ABC Raceway win – just shy of 3.7 seconds ahead of Suzik.

Kallas worked to a strong third-place performance ahead of Nosser and Jeff Klopstein. Hudack had a familiar foe on his tail throughout the 15-lap Six-Cylinder feature, as once again Dale Coddington made the Ashland star work for his win. Hudack, who also started on the fourth row, slipped to the inside on Ken Tyykila to take second after just two laps, and within another circuit he had changed lanes and swept around rookie Marcus Dunbar for the lead.

On the next lap Coddington took second away from Dunbar, and the lead pair pulled away for what many expected to be another runaway showdown for the win. Tiffany Hudack worked the inside line to take third from Dunbar just past mid-race, but a lap later Brandon Ottman and Jonathan Popp got together to bring out the first of four caution flags that would throw a little drama into the plot line of the race.

After a spin by Jeremy Lindquist, a two-car tangle between Adam Traaholt and Ottman, and a get-together involving Dunbar and Tyykila over the course of laps 12 and 13, Tyler Hudack was surprisingly slow coming to the restart for a green-white-checkered finish, allowing both sister Tiffany and Coddington to surround him for a three-wide run into turn 1. But Tyler rediscovered the gas pedal and edged ahead as the pack came to the white flag. Coddington took one more shot at the win as he pulled alongside coming into the final corner, but Hudack held on by four one-hundredths of a second – about a fender-length – for his third win of the season and 11th overall at Ashland. Tiffany Hudack led a close pack in coming home third, just ahead of another impressive run by rookie Dunbar and Forrest Schultz.

Tyykila recovered for a ninth-place run and earned the $50 bonus for displaying the Raceway’s 50th Anniversary decal on his car after that finishing position was selected in a pre-race random drawing.

The other two features ran non-stop and resulted in first-time winners on the season. Nick Oreskovich of Mason lived up to his nickname – the “Flyin’ Farmer” – as he blew away the WISSOTA Super Stock feature field by the biggest winning margin of the night.

Oreskovich joined front-row starters Andy Grymala and Cory Casari in an early three-car dogfight up front before sneaking under Grymala for the lead on lap 2, and with no yellow flags to slow the 20-lapper it was no contest. Within four more laps Oreskovich was 1.6 seconds up on Grymala, and before mid-race that advantage had doubled.

Much of the reason Oreskovich was able to run away was the fact that the battle for second was so hard-fought. Grymala had to deal with challenges from Casari, Scott Lawrence and Wayne Stricker, among others, throughout the early portion of the race, before Stricker finally broke through to take the runner-up position away on lap 6. As many as six drivers were in the pack battling for second, while Oreskovich maintained a three-second or better lead.

Even as the leader caught slower traffic Stricker couldn’t cut into the deficit, as Oreskovich’s final margin of victory was nearly 3.75 seconds – or almost a full straightaway. Casari edged by Grymala in the closing stages for third, and Randy Spacek drove home fifth.

Glenn Dammer of Duluth, MN, used a strong run around the perimeter of the red-clay oval for his first ABC Raceway feature win since August 2007. Granted, it took a few laps to overcome a solid effort by polesitter Chris Johnson, but once out front the former track champ proved he remembered how to get to the checkered flag. Dammer moved up from the third row by finding some room up around the high side of the wide, racy track and maintaining his momentum. Although Johnson’s early led was a good six car-lengths, Dammer grabbed second from Andy Udeen by lap 3 and closed in quickly before claiming the point on lap 5.

As Dammer pulled away over the back half of the 12-lap run, Johnson had his hands full trying to keep Chad Carlson, Matt Deragon and visiting Josh Loucks at bay. Eventually Loucks got by Carlson for fourth, and then over the final two laps he claimed third from Deragon and second from Johnson, but Dammer’s half-straightaway advantage was plenty to chalk up his ninth career win here but first since he posted seven wins en route to the 2007 track title.

Johnson, Deragon and Udeen completed the top five.

Fast-lap bonuses from Northern Clearing were awarded to Truscott in the Mid-Mods (17.717 seconds) and Coddington in the Sixes (18.701).

A busy night is in store for race fans next Saturday at the ABC Raceway. Lake Shore Cafe of Ashland will be the presenting sponsor for the annual Six-Cylinder “Summer Sizzler,” as well as the AmsOil Race of Champions qualifying features for the three WISSOTA-sanctioned divisions. In addition, the Raceway will be giving away 50 bicycles as part of the 50th Anniversary celebration of the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association.

Adult tickets are just $10, and fans ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, and racing is set to start at 7. “Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, .

ABC Raceway to Offer Half-Price Admission; Former Workers, Drivers Invited

June 28th, 2014

Ashland, WI — The ABC Raceway is offering another special night of stock car racing on Saturday – and this time, at a pretty good price.

Heartland Communications and WBSZ, 93.3 FM, will present its “50 Years of Jamming the Stands” special under the lights at the three-eighths-mile red-clay oval just south of Ashland, with fans getting the chance to see their favorite local racers for just five dollars per adult.

“This is a great way for casual race fans – or even non-racing folks – to come out and see what our show is all about,” Raceway president Kurt Beeksma said earlier this week. “People who may not come out to the track that much can get in for half-price and watch a fast-paced, action-packed, family-friendly race program without taking a big hit in the pocketbook.

“We’ve had this five-dollar ticket night for six years now. Other race track promoters thought we were crazy for offering this back in 2009, when the economic recession was at its worst and race tracks were struggling financially. Now nearly every race track around has one of these (shows) on their schedule, because it draws so many new fans.”

In addition to the half-priced ticket, many former racers and track workers have been invited back to watch Saturday’s show, as part of the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association’s season-long 50th Anniversary celebration.

“It’s a small way of showing our appreciation to the many former track volunteers and Board members who toiled out here for so many years to set the foundation for what has become one of the most successful grass-roots race facilities in the Upper Midwest,” Anniversary committee spokesman Eric Erickson pointed out recently. “Also, we wanted to extend our thanks to the many dozens of drivers who were so loyal to our track and our organization for the past 50 years.”

Last Saturday’s program saw several hundred fans crowd the front straightaway as they visited with the drivers and got close-up looks at the race cars during the “Meet the Drivers” session prior to the show. Once the green flags flew, a three-hour race program resulted in four drivers collecting their first wins of the season – including one who won here for the first time ever.

Greenland, MI’s George Truscott – uncle to red-hot track points leader Mike Truscott of Chippewa Falls – led from green to checkered for his first WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature win at Ashland. Also collecting their first wins of 2014 here were Steve Stuart of Ashland in the WISSOTA “big” Modifieds and Wayne Stricker of Highbridge in the WISSOTA Super Stocks.

In the Pure Stocks it was young Terran Spacek of Phillips topping the field for the first time this season at ABC.

The only repeat winner on the night was Ashland’s Tyler Hudack, who collected his second Six-Cylinder checkered flag in three nights of racing at ABC so far.

The other highlight to last weekend’s show came courtesy of the fans themselves. Through door-prize ticket and T-shirt sales, a silent auction for specially-designed race car door panels and more, the fans in attendance generously donated in record amounts to the “Relay for Life” chapter for Ashland-Bayfield County, as part of the region’s huge cancer fundraiser this Spring.

The grandstand and pit gates will open at 5 pm on Saturday, with hot laps starting at 6:15. The first race of the evening should take to the track at around 7 pm. For this night only, admission tickets for adult fans (ages 13 & older) are only $5, while fans ages 12 and under are still welcome in for free when accompanied by a paying adult.

Prior to Saturday’s race program, “Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715)682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

A New Truscott in Victory Lane George Truscott collects first ABC Mid-Mod Win

June 24th, 2014

Ashland, WI– George Truscott of Greenland, MI, survived early restarts and a strong challenge by Cole Spacek to earn his first-ever feature win on Saturday night, as part of a very busy night at the ABC Raceway.

Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland presented the “Race to Finish the Fight Against Cancer” fund-raiser to benefit the Ashland-Bayfield County “Relay for Life” chapter for the American Cancer Society. Funds from Saturday’s race program, a benefit golf tournament in Bayfield the day before and other activities in recent weeks have helped the “Relay for Life” group raise over $130,000 year-to-date.

The AmsOil Dirt Track Series five-division show began under very sunny skies and comfortable temperatures but turned cool and damp shortly after the Little Caesar’s Pizza-sponsored Kids’ “Meet the Drivers” Night meet-and-greet session, where well over 250 youngsters went down onto the red-clay oval to meet their favorite racers.

Truscott, who started on the pole of the WISSOTA Midwest Modified 15-lap feature, held off an early outside-lane challenge from Duane Dunbar for the first three laps, just prior to Tanner Byholm’s spin. On the next restart, after Guy Carley’s spin, Paul Niznik’s ride caught the turn sideways and flipped twice in mid-air before landing on all fours at the top of turn 1, with another five cars caught up in a pile trying to stop behind Niznik’s heavily-damaged ride. All drivers involved were unhurt, but most of their cars were unable to continue.

Once the race went back to green, Mike Truscott made a strong move to slip into fourth, and then a lap later he stole third from Dunbar. Meanwhile Spacek, who had worked inside to take second from Dunbar on the restart, began a race-long effort to spoil the landmark run, which ran the final 11 laps non-stop.

George Truscott’s final margin of victory was just a shade under a half-second as Spacek threatened often but fell short. It was a distance back to Mike Truscott in third, while Paul Suzik – who was caught up in the Niznik incident on lap 4 – roared back to a fouth-place effort just ahead of Jesse Aho. Brad Seavers collected an extra $50 bonus for finishing 12th and displaying the 50th Anniversary decal on his car, as a result of a random drawing for a finishing position prior to the Mid-Mod A-main.

Ashland’s Steve Stuart also had to hold off a hard-charging threat in order to win his first WISSOTA Modified feature of the year. Stuart started from the inside of row 4 and picked his way into the lead on lap 4 by hugging the bottom groove of the smooth three-eighths-mile oval, and continued on that line right to his 22nd career ABC Raceway win and eighth here in a Mod. Stuart’s run wasn’t a walk in the park, though. Front-row starters Al Uotinen and Scott Hudack ran door-to-door and swapped the lead over the first couple of laps before Bill Byholm snuck inside on Uotinen for second on lap 3. Stuart then slipped past both Byholm and Hudack on the next lap and snared the point.

As the race stayed green Stuart extended his advantage to about a half-second, while Curt Myers found the high-side to his liking and swept by a host of cars to move into third. Myers then dove low to move past Hudack on lap 7, and he raced around the rim while Stuart stuck to the bottom as the lead pair pulled away from Jeff Spacek, who replaced Hudack in third on lap 9. Stuart and Myers were into slower traffic by lap 12, and the leader built himself a little cushion as Myers contended with the backmarkers staying up in his line while trying to get out of the way. But once in the clear, Myers again chipped away at Stuart’s lead.

The race’s only stoppage came with two of the 20 laps left, when Destin Lorimor’s ride spun around. But Stuart outlasted Myers over the green-white-checkered sprint to collect the win, with Spacek, Byholm and Uotinen completing the top five. Like the Mods, the WISSOTA Super Stocks ran off their 20-lap headliner with only one yellow-flag slowdown, as Wayne Stricker of Highbridge led flag-to-flag for his first win of the year and third at Ashland. Stricker’s sinister-looking flat-black car has been very fast so far in 2014, and he took full advantage of his outside front-row start.

Visiting Kevin Burdick worked inside past Randy Spacek for second spot early, and Burdick became Stricker’s biggest – but not only – challenger during the run. Stricker flew around the top groove to a three-quarter-second lead over the first five laps, but Burdick trimmed that down to about a quarter-second prior to the race’s only caution flag on lap 9.

On the restart Myers – one of several drivers doing double-duty on this night – raced around Burdick and into second, but Burdick recovered on the next lap and resumed his chase of Stricker. As the back half of the race flew by, the leader increased his cushion – to as much as 1.7 seconds with four laps remaining – before crossing under the checkered flag comfortably out front. Burdick fended off a late rally by Myers for second, and a charging Cory Casari and Nick Oreskovich also came home in the top five.

The other two features ran off their distances without any stoppages, and certainly both were entertaining. The Six-Cylinder 15-lap A-main featured a showdown for the win between the two top runners in the division – Tyler Hudack and Dale Coddington – with Hudack holding on for the win on this night. Rookie Marcus Dunbar looked impressive early as he held the initial lead until Hudack worked his way by on lap 2. Tiffany Hudack then took second the next time around, but by lap 5 Tyler was a full 1.7 seconds ahead and Coddington was alongside Tiffany for runner-up honors.

At mid-race Tyler was still 1.6 seconds up on Coddington, but as the laps wound down and slower traffic came into play Coddington reeled in the leader. The duo took the white flag nose-to-tail, but although the defending track champ threw everything he could at the situation, Tyler Hudack came away with his tenth career ABC win. Tiffany Hudack came home a distant third, while rookie Ethan Beeksma finished an impressive fourth ahead of Forrest Schultz. The 12-lap Pure Stock run saw polesitter Tim Carbon hold off Terran Spacek for the early lead, but when Chad Carlson joined the battle up front on lap 2 Carbon lost control and spun his ride off the track at the bottom of turn 3. Spacek then assumed the lead and, with Carlson checking up to avoid contact with Carbon, Matt Deragon moved into second.

It didn’t take long for Carlson to regroup and overtake Deragon – two laps, in fact – but by then Spacek’s lead was a half-dozen car-lengths. Deragon tried to battle back, but with four to go Carlson had the position nailed down, while Spacek ran off to his second career win here by five lengths. Andy Udeen made his first visit of the season a good one with a fourth-place run, while Chris Johnson came home fifth.

Stuart in the Mods (17.523 seconds) and Burdick in the Supers (17.920) earned the Northern Clearing fast-lap bonuses on the night. Also, each of the five feature winners received an additional $100 compliments of Northern Clearing. A season-high 82 cars were registered for action.

Next Saturday Heartland Communications and WBSZ-FM will offer a five-dollar adult admission ticket as part of the ABC Raceway’s “50 Years of Jamming the Stands” festivities. In addition, many racers and track workers from the past 50 years will be celebrated.

Fans ages 12 and under will still be admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, and racing is set to start at 7. “Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, .

Cancer Fundraiser, ‘Meet the Drivers’ Planned for ABC Raceway Saturday

June 21st, 2014

Ashland, WI — As a part of a schedule loaded with special events, Saturday’s program at the ABC Raceway has extra meaning.

Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland will present the “Racing to Finish the Fight Against Cancer” night at the three-eights-mile red-clay oval located south of Ashland, with proceeds from several different fundraiser opportunities earmarked towards a very worthy cause.

The “Relay for Life” chapter for Ashland and Bayfield Counties will be on hand helping to raise money by selling T-shirts and bumper stickers, and all monies raised by the sale of the track’s “split-the-pot” tickets on this night will go toward the overall charity effort. There will be opportunities for incentives made available to fans who purchase and wear the special purple “Racing to Finish the Fight” t-shirts on sale from the “Relay for Life” group at the track.

“All of us have been touched in some way by cancer,” stated Raceway president Kurt Beeksma this week. “This special fundraiser night is a worthwhile way for us to help those who are fighting the good fight to eliminate this dreaded disease.” Northern Clearing officials have pledged to match every dollar raised by the “split-the-pot” ticket sales up to $1,000. They are also offering a $100 bonus to each of the five feature winners on this night.

In addition, Little Caesar’s Pizza will again host the special pre-race “Meet the Drivers” session, after the event was washed out by wet weather a couple weeks back. Fans young and old alike will be welcomed onto the track to meet their favorite drivers, collect autographs and souvenir photos, and even collect a few treats from the drivers themselves.

A fast, smooth racing surface allowed over 80 racers to show off in front of the fans during last Saturday night’s program, with some of the fastest laps of the season turned. After the visiting Northern Vintage Stockcar Racers competed in their restored racers, Jeff Spacek of Phillips was the run-away winner of the WISSOTA Modified main event, while Superior’s Dave Flynn survived a thrilling WISSOTA Super Stock showdown for his first win here in over two seasons.

Mike Truscott of Chippewa Falls set a new single-lap track record on his way to his second straight WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature win, while Ashland’s Matt Deragon also went two-for-two on the season with the win in the Pure Stock headliner. And Dale Coddington of Hayward held off a late challenge to take the Six-Cylinder A-main win.

The grandstand and pit gates will open at 5 pm on Saturday, with hot laps starting at 6:15, followed by the popular “meet-and-greet” session. The first race of the evening should take to the track at around 7:20 pm. Admission tickets for adults (ages 13 & older) are only $10, while fans ages 12 and under are welcome for free when accompanied by a paying adult.

Prior to Saturday’s race program, “Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Flynn Returns to Victory Lane; Spacek, Truscott Strong in ABC Raceway Wins

June 18th, 2014

Ashland, WI — Dave Flynn of Superior took home his first feature win since May 2012 on Saturday night at the ABC Raceway, on a night in which the track’s past champions were honored.

Also during the “Turn Back the Clock” Night program, presented by the Bad River Lodge, Casino & Convention Center, Jeff Spacek Phillips and Mike Truscott of Chippewa Falls were dominant in their feature runs, while Hayward’s Dale Coddington and Ashland’s Matt Deragon worked hard for their wins. The AmsOil Dirt Track Series race program included the annual visit by the Northern Vintage Stockcar Racers group, with ten restored race machines traveling from as far away as the Twin Cities area to perform on the red-clay oval.

Track officials kept one eye on the weather all day, as dark skies and brisk temperatures threatened to put a damper on the program, but the conditions actually helped the racing surface stay smooth and tacky-fast all night long.

Flynn, who started outside on the front row for the WISSOTA Super Stock 20-lap A-feature, edged ahead of pole-starter Wayne Stricker for the initial lead, and after Nick Oreskovich worked an outside move on Stricker to take second on lap 2, Andy Grymala’s spin brought out the first of four caution flags. The second slowdown came when Grymala’s car broke loose and ground to a stop just short of nosing into the guard rail at the turn 3 pit exit. Flynn battled Oreskovich, Scott Lawrence and Stricker in close formation over the next 13 uninterrupted laps, with positions swapping constantly during the run. After working past Oreskovich on lap 8 for second, Lawrence used a similar inside line to overtake Flynn for the lead one circuit later. The four-car skirmish became a seven-car dogfight over the next few laps, as Cory Casari, Randy Spacek and Curt Myers drew near. Lawrence was able to sneak away to a one-second lead until the action came to a screeching halt on lap 16, when the cars of Oreskovich and Stricker, while racing for second, became entangled in turn 2. Both drivers limped their cars to the work area to change flat tires, and both rejoined the race. Flynn, who restarted second alongside Myers, used the outside line to claw his way past Lawrence for the lead, with Shawn McFadden Jr following in his tire tracks to second. Myers then spun after the field took the white flag, taking himself out of the hunt, and Flynn held on for the final sprint to the finish for his first win here in over two years. The tenth-stating McFadden, Lawrence, Stricker and Spacek followed as the field finished in a tight-knit pack.

DJ Keeler finished seventh in the event and claimed a $100 bonus presented by the Raceway, based on a random drawing of the eligible finishing position in the event combined with the fact that he displayed the commemorative 50th Anniversary decal on his car.

Only one late caution flag slowed a lightning-fast Jeff Spacek in the WISSOTA Modified 20-lap headliner. Rick Rivord outran polesitter Paul Niznik to lead the first four laps, until Bill Byholm worked his way to the point with an low-line pass. Spacek, who started outside on row 3, used a similar move to take second from Rivord on lap 5, and the next time around he worked the high side to steal the lead away. From there Spacek was long gone, posting near-record laps on his way to a 2.15-second lead just past mid-race. Visitor Kevin Adams slipped into second on lap 7, but it would take a caution flag to give Adams a chance at the win.
He got his wish in the form of a spin by another infrequent guest – Donnie Lofdahl – and restarted just behind Spacek’s left-rear tire on lap 13. But the former six-time ABC champ pulled away on the restart, and a rare bobble by Adams offered Byholm a chance to slip by for second. Byholm and Steve Stuart then swapped the runner-up spot via a series of cross-over slides, allowing Spacek to walk away to his 54th career win at Ashland.

By the time Stuart finally secured second on lap 16, Spacek’s lead was nearing three seconds. Adams grabbed third away from Byholm one last time with three laps left, and Steve Lavasseur wasn’t far back in fifth at the checkers. In a similarly dominant performance, Truscott took over the WISSOTA Midwest Modified 15-lap feature shortly after a restart and walked off to his second win here this season. Polesitter Paul Suzik ran a strong race early, pacing Cole Spacek, Jeff Klopstein, John Kallas and the eighth-starting Truscott until Dennis Baldwin’s spin on lap 3 slowed things down. Truscott took advantage of his situation on the race’s only restart, passing Kallas, Klopstein and Spacek on successive laps before drawing alongside Suzik and making the winning pass on lap 6. Three tours later he put Baldwin a lap down as he set a torrid pace.

By the time Truscott took the checkered flag his lead was nearly two full seconds, giving him two wins in as many race nights at Ashland this season and his ninth career ABC win, including eight in the Mid-Mods, which is now second-most all-time in that division here. Suzik was impressive throughout the run, holding off and eventually pulling away from Spacek for second, while Klopstein took fourth ahead of Paul Niznik, who ran well all night in both his “big” and “little” mods.

Coddington’s 19th career ABC Raceway win in the Six-Cylinder main event wasn’t a cakewalk, as caution flags kept a very determined Tyler Hudack close to his trunklid for most of the 15-lap run. After rookie Marcus Dunbar spun in the first corner to start the race, Coddington restarted directly behind polesitter Colten Vernon, and the defending champ quickly dispatched with the rookie to take the lead. After Tiffany Hudack slipped by Vernon for second, debris on the track brought out a second yellow-flag slowdown. Tyler Hudack – who began the race dead-last on the 11-car grid – completed a daring thread-the-needle move between Jeremy Lindquist and Zach Pagels to take fourth just before the third-running Vernon looped his ride just as Lindquist tagged the turn 2 guard rail on lap 3.
Tyler Hudack’s first pass of Tiffany for second was negated by Aaron Mashlan’s car slapping the turn 2 wall on lap 4, but he repeated the move on the restart and stayed right on Coddington’s rear push bar for the next few laps before Coddington finally drew away, leading by as much as .89 seconds before catching slower traffic. Tiffany Hudack was well back of Tyler in third, and Forrest Schultz and Pagels completed the top five.

Deragon’s Pure Stock feature win was a nailbiter as well, as he led a four-car pack to the final stripe. Deragon started the 12-lapper behind pole-starter and former track champ Glenn Dammer, who had his hands full dealing with early pressure by Brandle Pupp. Deragon used the inside groove to work past Pupp for second on lap 2, bringing Terran Spacek in tow to third, and then he continued on under Dammer into the lead just before Tim Carbon’s spin on lap 5 stalled the pace. Carbon spun again a lap after the restart, and from there things got interesting. Spacek got a run on Deragon for the lead on lap 6, and then Deragon took the point back on the next lap – all the while barely keeping Dammer and Pupp behind them. Deragon had the last say, however, with four laps remaining, and held on for his second win to start the season, with Spacek, Dammer and Pupp close behind. Jeff Christman scored fifth-place money from a short distance.

Mike Pappenfus of Osceola steered his early-’70s Camaro to one of the two Vintage-Car feature wins, and Ken Sabby of River Falls took the other in his beautiful blue winged super-modified.

On a night when the fastest timed laps in each of the four electronically-scored features was within 0.156 seconds of each division’s respective track records, the smooth, wide red-clay oval produced fast laps for Mike Truscott in the Mid-Mods – who did set a new track record at 16.935 seconds – and Tyler Hudack in the Sixes (18.048).

During intermission, the Raceway honored 39 of the over 85 drivers who have won points championships at the track since 1966: Ryan Adamzak, Patrick Beeksma, Bob Brevak, Tim Carbon, Chad Carlson, Cory Casari, Dale Coddington, Glenn Dammer, Matt Deragon, Duane Dunbar, James Eliason, Mel Ferguson, Ray Gregor, Dennis Groom, Larry Haderly, Chuck Hawkinson, Tony Hicks, Mark Hudack, Jim Latvala, Scott Lawrence, Ross Lightner, Bob Mattson, Tim McMann, Brian Mikkonen, the late Rich Morrison (represented by his son), Nick Nye, Travis Nye, Mickey Nosser, Bob Root, the late Don Roseen (represented by his wife Joyce), Dan Shefchik, Jeff Spacek, Randy Spacek, Steve Stuart, Ron Swanson, Al Uotinen, Rob Weber, Ron Weinberger, and Jule Wilcox.

The Raceway staff served a special champions’ luncheon and provided tours of the facility to their honored guests, and each champion was presented a commemorative t-shirt marking the celebration.

On Saturday, June 21, the ABC Raceway will join forces with Northern Clearing Inc and the Ashland-Bayfield County “Relay for Life” chapter to hold a “Race to Finish the Fight Against Cancer” fundraiser at the track. All proceeds from the sale of “split-the-pot” tickets and specially-offered t-shirts and bumper stickers will go toward the worthy cause. In addition, the rescheduled Kids’ “Meet the Drivers” Night activities, presented by Little Caesar’s Pizza, will also take place prior to the program.

Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, and racing is set to start at 7. “Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website,

ABC Raceway to Honor Past Champions on Saturday

June 14th, 2014

Ashland, WI — As part of its 50-year celebration of racing in the Chequamegon Bay area, the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association will pay homage to its long and celebrated list of track points champions at the ABC Raceway on Saturday.

For its annual “Turn Back the Clock” Night program, presented by the Bad River Lodge, Casino & Convention Center, the Raceway will welcome back many of its over 85 past champs for an afternoon luncheon, tour of the facilities and evening of racing action.

Also included in the day’s activities will be the annual visit by the Northern Vintage Stockcar Racers club, a Midwestern touring group which brings restored full-bodied stock cars and classic racing coupes and roadsters to tracks throughout Minnesota and Wisconsin for show as well as competition.

In addition, the track will host a car show from 2-5 pm. Many of the NVSR competitors will have their restored racers on display, and area car enthusiasts that want to show off their prized autos are welcome to display them in the Raceway grandstand parking area as well.

The racing portion of the busy program will include all five regular weekly divisions – WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds, plus Six-Cylinders and Pure Stocks – as well as the Vintage racers in action for a full night of fun, and during the program’s intermission the champions that are in attendance will be introduced and honored, giving fans a chance to see and remember some of the region’s greatest racing heroes and legends.

Although the Champions’ Luncheon is by invitation only, the car show is open to the public at no charge in the Raceway’s parking area. The grandstand and pit gates will open at 5 pm on Saturday, with hot laps starting at 6:15 and the first race of the evening set for around 7 pm. Admission tickets for adults (ages 13 & older) are only $10, while fans ages 12 and under are welcome for free when accompanied by a paying adult.

Prior to the race program, “Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Rains Wash Out ABC Raceway’s ‘Meet the Drivers’ Night

June 9th, 2014

Ashland, WI,– Mother Nature posted another clean sweep of the racing action at the ABC Raceway. The track’s popular Kids’ Meet the Drivers Night, presented by Little Caesar’s Pizza of Ashland, was cancelled by track officials due to Saturday’s day-long wet weather and unfavorable forecast.

Raceway officials hope to get their second race night of the season in next Saturday, as the Bad River Lodge, Casino & Convention Center will help present another special night in the season-long celebration of the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association’s 50th year of organizing stock car racing in the Chequamegon Bay area.

The June 14 program will include an invitation-only luncheon for the track’s many past champions beginning at 3 pm. A car show will be open to the public in the Raceway’s fan parking area from 3 until 5 pm, with stock cars from local racers as well as custom cars and hot rods on display. The Northern Vintage Stockcar Racers group, headquartered in west-central Wisconsin, will bring a good dozen or more restored race cars from yesteryear to display as part of the car show, and later they will compete on the track along with the five regularly-slated divisions of racing action.

During the race program’s intermission, the past champions will be introduced to the crowd and honored.

Fans and drivers with admission wristbands from the May 31 race program should hang on to them, as they will still be good for admission into either the June 14 or June 21 race program, provided neither event is cancelled due to weather.

The grandstand and pit gates will open at 5 pm on Saturday, with hot laps starting at 6:15 and racing to follow at around 7.

Admission tickets for adults (ages 13 & older) are only $10 for this special event, while youngsters ages 12 and under are welcome for free when accompanied by a paying adult. WBSZ’s “Race Night” radio program will provide live up-to-date track news and weather information from the Raceway on 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm on Saturday.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

Popular ‘Meet the Drivers’ Night Planned for Saturday at ABC Raceway

June 7th, 2014

Ashland, WI — When you’ve been operating a successful business for 50 years, much of what you do becomes tradition.

One of the ABC Raceway’s most popular traditions is its annual Kids’ Meet the Drivers Night, to be presented by Little Caesar’s Pizza of Ashland this Saturday night.

A staple on the Raceway schedule for decades, the idea was thought up by track officials as a way to build and maintain the excitement of racing in younger fans by giving them direct contact with their on-track heroes. The drivers bring their race cars onto the track and display them, and the youngsters swarm onto the track to get an up-close peek at the cars, meet their favorite drivers – or all of them, if time permits – and collect autographs, pictures, and even a few treats. The idea has become wildly successful in the racing world – so much so that nearly every short-track in the country offers this event at least once during their season. And it’s not just little kids that get a kick out of the event; fans of all ages enjoy the chance to mingle with the stars of local racing.

The best aspect may be the fact that the fans aren’t the only ones who take delight in the opportunity. “When you take 70 or 80 stock car drivers and mix them with a couple hundred or more adoring young fans,” Raceway spokesman Eric Erickson said recently, “you get some great positive interaction and a lot of smiling faces.” Not many drivers or fans were smiling after last Saturday’s race program was ended early due to rain. But with the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association celebrating its 50th year of operating the venerable three-eighths-mile red-clay oval, there is both plenty of racing action and lots of special activities yet to
come during the summer of ’14. Along with its exciting five-division race programs every Saturday night, the Raceway will host a car show, bring out vintage racers to compete, honor its long list of past champions, hold a fundraiser for cancer research, and celebrate its many great volunteer workers and long-time veteran racers – and that’s just for the month of June.

On Saturday the grandstand and pit gates will open at 5 pm, and hot laps will start at 6:15. The “meet and greet” session will follow at around 7, and the first race of the evening should “go green” at about 7:20 pm. Admission tickets for adults (ages 13 & older) are only $10, while fans ages 12 and under are welcome for free when accompanied by a paying adult. The “Race Night” radio program will provide live up-to-date track news and weather information from the Raceway on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm on Saturday.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

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Rains Spoil Racing at ABC Saturday

June 1st, 2014

Ashland, WI,– The good news for race drivers who arrived at the ABC Raceway on Saturday night was that they got in to the pits for free.

The bad news was, they didn’t get to race.

Rains that threatened the entire northwestern corner of Wisconsin all day finally reached the Chequamegon Bay area and sprinkled just enough to mess up any chance for the Raceway staff to start its program, sponsored by the Safari Tavern of Ashland.

On Saturday, June 7, Little Caesar’s Pizza will present the Raceway’s annual Kids’ “Meet the Drivers” Night, during which fans young and old alike will be invited onto the track to get a chance to visit with drivers, get autographs and souvenirs, and take an up-close look at the race cars. A full night of exciting stock-car racing action with all five classes – WISSOTA-sanctioned modifieds, super stocks and Midwest modifieds, plus the track’s own pure stocks and six-cylinders – will follow the “meet-and-greet” session.

Hot laps will begin at 6:15 pm. Adult tickets are just $10 each, and kids ages 12 and under are welcome for free with a paid adult admission.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. “Race Night” will air Saturday on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, from 4:30-6 pm with up-to-date track news and weather information. For raceday
information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

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Drivers Race Free at ABC Raceway on Saturday

May 31st, 2014

Ashland, WI — A little something special is in store for drivers participating in this Saturday night’s stock car racing program at the ABC Raceway. All drivers who register to race at the three-eighths-mile red-clay oval south of
Ashland on Saturday will have their pit admission fee paid for them, complements of the event’s presenting sponsor, the Safari Tavern of Ashland.

The treat is part of the season-long 50th anniversary celebration of the founding of the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association, which owns and runs the Raceway facility and organizes its racing events.

“I think you would be hard-pressed to find an opportunity like this at many other tracks for the drivers,” stated Association president Kurt Beeksma recently. “We have the good fortune to have another great sponsor who came on board and has been willing to help support this promotion.

“It’s just as important for us to show our appreciation for the efforts of the drivers who help to make our show great as it is for us to thank the fans, sponsors and other supporters of our track.”

Last weekend’s season opener saw four of the five feature winners claim their victories in convincing fashion, but the level of competition proved that this won’t be a season-long trend.

Ashland’s Kevin Eder put on a clinic in winning the WISSOTA Modified A-main by better than four seconds, while Curt Myers of Cameron and Michael Truscott of Chippewa Falls continued their early-season dominance in the WISSOTA Super Stock and Midwest Modified features, respectively.

Matt Deragon of Ashland proved he was the man to beat in last weekend’s Pure Stock headliner, but in the Six-Cylinder finale Tyler Hudack, also of Ashland, had his hands full before gaining the win.

The grandstand and pit gates will open Saturday at 5 pm, with hot laps following at 6:15, and the first green flag of the night set to fly at about 7 pm. Admission tickets for adults (ages 13 & older) are only $10, while fans ages 12 and under are welcome for free when accompanied by a paying adult. An adult-ticket “punch pass” is also available for only $90, offering admission to ten regular-season shows (excluding the IRA Sprint Car special in late July and Red Clay Classic in September) for the price of nine.

Prior to Saturday’s race program, “Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

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Myers, Truscott Continue Strong Starts to ’14 with ABC Opener Wins

May 27th, 2014

Ashland, WI,– Two drivers that are off to white-hot starts in 2014 – Curt Myers and Mike Truscott – kicked off their campaigns at the ABC Raceway with AmsOil Dirt Track Series feature wins on Saturday night, while Kevin Eder chased away his car’s early-season gremlins with a walk-away win of his own.

The Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association opened a very special schedule celebrating its 50th year of existence with a 69-car, five-division program presented by Auto Value Auto Parts of Ashland in beautiful weather and completed well before 10:30 pm.

Myers, of Cameron, followed up a win at Red Cedar Speedway in Menomonie on Friday night with a 2.47-second margin of victory in the WISSOTA Super Stock main event. Myers started on the pole and took off just as outside front-row starter Wayne Stricker’s motor popped as the green flag dropped. After another stoppage for debris on the track, the 20 scheduled laps ran off non-stop, with Myers in control and pulling away with each circuit.

Cory Casari tussled with Randy Spacek for second spot before winning that battle by lap 2, but Casari could only watch as Myers slowly built his lead. Defending champ Scott Lawrence took fourth away from Andy Grymala during the opening laps as well, but on lap 4 Grymala returned the favor, and on lap 8 Nick Oreskovich executed an inside move to pass the champ for fifth.

The front of the field held their spots throughout the run, with Myers catching slower traffic as the white flag waived. Myers grabbed his second-straight win on opening night in Ashland, his 19th career ABC Raceway win, and his second straight here dating back to last year’s Red Clay Classic. Casari, Spacek, Grymala and Oreskovich followed at a distance.

Also off to a strong start is Truscott, who went two-for-two in WISSOTA Midwest Modified features, enhancing his win at St Croix Valley Raceway the night before with a dominant performance in the 15-lapper in Ashland on Saturday. Ryan Adamzak swept around pole-starter Cody Carlson just before a multi-car mess negated the pass, and Tanner Byholm had a similar move on Carlson waived off on the restart when Dennis Baldwin spun before the first lap was scored.

On the ensuing restart Carlson bobbled up in turn 4, allowing Adamzak to grab the top spot with Byholm in tow. Truscott, who started seventh, had just gotten past John Kallas for third before two more cars spun to stop the pace on lap 3. One lap after the restart Truscott made his moves for the win by working around the lead pair, while Paul Niznik slipped past Kallas and then Byholm for third. Once out front, the young hotshoe from Chippewa Falls was uncatchable as he closed out his eighth career feature win and second in a row on an opening night in Ashland. Adamzak held off a mid-race challenge from Niznik to earn second-place money, while Kallas trailed closely in fourth and Jeff Klopstein came home a distant fifth. Eder took a car that had been giving him fits throughout the first three weeks of the racing season at other tracks and put on a clinic with it in the non-stop 20-lap WISSOTA Modified headliner. The Ashland speedster started outside on the second row and worked his way around pole-starter and “big mod” rookie Travis Nye for second place in the opening laps, and then he dove inside to dig past Steve Lavasseur for the lead on lap 5. Within three laps on the smooth, fast surface Eder had built a 1.33-second lead and never let up.

Behind the leader were a pair of interesting battles as Lavasseur fended off former track champs Steve Stuart and Jeff Spacek as long as he could for second, while Scott Hudack drove from the tenth starting spot to race side-by-side with Nye for fifth. On lap 9 Stuart finally got the better of Lavasseur, but by lap 10 Eder’s cushion was already over 2.5 seconds.

Just after halfway Spacek took third away from Lavasseur, and shortly after that Hudack’s brilliant run ended with his car coasting to a stop in the infield grass. As Eder extended his advantage to over four seconds, Spacek made a cross-over move stick and stole second from Stuart with two laps remaining. For Eder the win was number 13 of his career and also his second straight to start a season at ABC, while Spacek and Stuart were a ways back at the checkers. Nye was impressive with a fourth-place run in his first-ever feature appearance in the division, while defending Mod champ Al Uotinen failed to scale after crossing the stripe in fifth, handing the spot to Lavasseur.

A caution-marred Six-Cylinder feature was capped by a wild finish, but Tyler Hudack of Ashland paced the entire 15-lap distance. As Hudack sped away early from the pole Jeremy Lindquist and Zack Pagels battled for second, with Pagels eventually gaining the positional advantage and Tiffany Hudack closing in to challenge from fourth. But Pagels spun after contact from Lindquist during lap 2, sending Lindquist to the back and tightening the field behind Tyler Hudack for the restart. Tiffany Hudack dove down low to threaten Pagels for second a couple of laps after the restart, but in turn 2 she drove down too low, caught the softer, slicker red
clay marking the bottom of the corner, and looped her ride; she kept the car going but lost valuable ground. Pagels took advantage of the situation to draw up to Tyler Hudack’s rear bumper on lap 6, and within the next circuit Pagels’ ride was alongside Hudack’s for the lead. But rookie Marcus Dunbar spun soon thereafter, followed by two more yellow-flag delays during each of the next three laps to slow the race’s pace.

For the final six laps Pagels kept the pressure on Tyler Hudack for the lead, with Forrest Schultz now close behind in third. On lap 11 Pagels edged ahead at the stripe, but Hudack charged back to retake the lead on the next go-’round. In the final turn, with the checkered flag in the air, contact between Pagels and Hudack turned the leader around, but the mild chaos regarding the finshing order was quickly resolved as Hudack was awarded the win – the ninth of his career – and Pagels was delegated to 13th position in final rundown. Schultz was awarded a career-best second-place finish, while Aaron Mashlan also had his best-ever feature run here by taking third, ahead of returning veteran Ken Tyykila and rookie Ethan Beeksma.

The Pure Stocks ran their feature without a hitch, and 2012 track champ Matt Deragon of Ashland established himself as the driver to beat in 2014 by taking his fourth ABC Raceway win. Deragon started the 12-lapper outside on the front row and sped around Brandle Pupp for a lead that he would not relinquish, while Jeff Christman followed to third. By lap 4 Deragon was putting backmarkers a lap down, while behind him a dandy of a battle was brewing between Christman, Chad Carlson in a borrowed car, and Terran Spacek for second.

Mechanical woes forced Carlson out of the event with four laps remaining, leaving the veteran Christman to outduel the youngster Spacek for runner-up honors. However, Deragon cruised to a decisive half-straightaway victory to start the season off right. Rookie Andrew Hanson worked his way to fourth, but Pupp, who finished fifth, was disqualified for a technical infraction after the event, leaving that position for Chris Johnson. Fast-lap awards presented by Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland went to Stuart in the Mods (17.830 seconds) and Casari in the Supers (17.875).

During intermission, the inaugural class of the new ABC Raceway Hall of Fame was announced. Named to the prestigious honor in the Honorary Inductee category, chosen unanimously by the HoF selection committee, were Frank and Verna Brevak (posthumously), the Northern State Bank of Ashland, and the George Vernon Family and their Northern Clearning Inc business.

The first Driver class will include Bob Root, Dwaine Erickson, Ron Hmielewski and Bob Brevak, while those to be inducted as Volunteers and Contributors include Robert “Weaver” Wherritt, Earl and Chris Zar, Ron and Jeanne Hmielewski, Bob and Sandy (posthumously) Root, and Dennis Asbach. The formal induction ceremonies will be held during the July 19 race program at the track.

As part of the kick-off of the 50th-anniversary celebration, Bob Root, the Association’s first president, acted as honorary flagman for the first race of the season. Fireworks wowed the large crowd on hand as the Mod feature field took to the track for the final race of the night.

Next Saturday night the Safari Tavern of Ashland will present the racing program, which will offer drivers participating in the five-division event free pit admission. Hot laps are set for 6:15 pm, and racing is set to start at 7. “Race Night” will air live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and stream online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm with at-the-track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, .

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ABC Raceway Kicks Off 50th-Anniversary Celebration on Saturday

May 24th, 2014

Ashland, WI — What promises to be an exciting and historic stock car racing season is scheduled to begin this Saturday night at the ABC Raceway. The summer of 2014 will mark the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association, which began as a small group of intrepid, hard-working enthusiasts who organized auto racing events in the Chequamegon Bay area.

The club hosted regular racing programs on Saturday and Sunday afternoons during the summers of 1965 and ’66 at the Ashland County Fairgrounds in Marengo and the Bayfield County Fairgrounds in Iron River, while at the same time renovating a site just south of Ashland that it purchased from the Frank and Verna Brevak family in order to create its own permanent race facility. The Association – made up entirely of local folks volunteering their time, efforts and, in some cases, money – along with generous help from several local businesses, finally hosted its first race event at the current ABC Raceway location in the summer of 1967.

Fifty years later, the Association has hosted over 650 race events, and it has established what is widely considered one of the premiere and most prestigious stock car race programs in the Midwest – the Red Clay Classic – which it has run at the end of each of the past 38 summers. The club has become one of the more successful and respected organizations in the sport, as evidenced by being named the WISSOTA Promoters Association Track of the Year in 2002, and being the recipient of the North Region Auto Racing Promoter of the Year award by national trade publication Racing Promotion Monthly after the 2012 season.

And the one aspect of the organization that still holds true 50 years later is that of the volunteer efforts of the track workers and members of the club. “We get forty to fifty people out here every Saturday night who truly donate their time to help us put on our race programs in a huge variety of ways,” Association president Kurt Beeksma proudly states, “and the majority of those people donate dozens of hours during the week with clean-up and preparation work as well.

“Every penny we’ve ever taken in here has either gone to our drivers’ purses, to pay our operating expenses, or into improvements within the facility. We’ve never paid out a paycheck to any worker – ever – in 50 years of this organization’s existence.”

The Association will celebrate its 50-year run with a schedule chock full of events geared to honor its proud history, starting Saturday night with the announcement of its first-ever class of inductees into its new ABC Raceway Hall of Fame. The announcement will be part of the first of 14 race programs slated between now and August 23, along with the 39th Red Clay Classic in September.

The Hall of Fame, which many within the Association admit is long overdue, has been established to pay tribute to the many men and women who contributed to the creation, operation and success of the Raceway. Through fan nominations and a selection committee, additional inductees will be added during each upcoming season.

The opener, to be presented by new track sponsor Auto Value Auto Parts of Ashland, will include all five divisions featured at ABC on a weekly basis – WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds, plus the track’s own Six-Cylinder and entry-level Pure Stock classes – on its three-eighths-mile red-clay oval.

The racing itself figures to be well worth the price of admission again this summer, with each of the division championships becoming very hotly contested over the course of the entire season. Superior’s Al Uotinen was the model of consistency during his 2013 Modified campaign at Ashland, finishing in the top six in eight of the nine feature races run to earn his fifth ABC points title. In 2014 Uotinen expects to be challenged by young guns Kevin Eder and Steve Stuart, both of Ashland, and Neil Balduc of Bessemer, MI, as well as seasoned veterans Curt Myers of Cameron, Jeff Spacek of Phillips and Bill Byholm of Glidden.

In the Super Stock class, the bar has been set pretty high by Scott Lawrence of Superior, who has won ten straight titles in the division and 13 championships overall at Ashland; both are track records. But Lawrence knows that the field at ABC is one of the best around, and he admits he has to be on his game every night out.

Those who hope to end Lawrence’s streak include veterans like Myers, who is off to a white-hot start already this Spring; Randy Spacek of Phillips, and Ken Truscott of Greenland, MI, as well as an eager group of younger drivers led by Shawn McFadden Jr of Ashland, Mason’s Nick Oreskovich and Cory Casari of Montreal.

With two-time defending champ Travis Nye of Ashland moving up to compete in the “big Mod” class, the Midwest Mod chase could be very much up for grabs. Young hotshoes like Cole Spacek of Phillips, Paul Suzik of Ironwood, MI, and Ryan Adamzak of Ashland are very capable of staying out front, but cagy veterans like Duane Dunbar of Marenisco, MI, Paul Niznik of Medford and John Kallas of Hurley are also championship-caliber.

Dale Coddington of Hayward is expected back to defend his Six-Cylinder title of a year ago, but, as has been the case for several years, he will have his hands full in one of the most competitive divisions at the track. Last year Tyler Hudack of Ashland challenged for the crown right up to the final race of the summer, and Tiffany Hudack of Ashland impressed many with her ability to race “with the boys.” Marengo’s Scott Ovaska and Ron Hmielewski are long-time veterans of the Six-Cylinder wars, but with several drivers from this division moving into other classes, this might be the year for an up-and-coming star to emerge.

Ashland’s Nick Nye won a very popular Pure Stock championship at ABC in 2013, making him and son Travis the only father-son duo to win titles in the same season at the track in its history, and giving Nick his first championship since 1982. The senior Nye has stated that he is retired from racing, leaving the door open for several solid contenders to grab the division’s crown.

Among the Pure Stock drivers to watch for in 2014 are Tim Carbon of Highbridge, Ashland’s Matt Deragon, Jeff Christman of South Range, and young Terran Spacek of Phillips. And like in the Sixes, this class will also field a fair share of newcomers.

Also on Saturday, the Auto Value Auto Parts store will host a car show in its parking lot on Sanborn Avenue in Ashland’s West End from 10 am-2 pm; the public is invited to attend.

At the track the grandstand and pit gates will open at 5 pm, hot laps will follow at 6:15, and the first green flag of the season is set to drop at around 7 pm. Admission tickets for adults (ages 13 & older) are only $10, while fans ages 12 and under are welcome for free when accompanied by a paying adult. An adult-ticket “punch pass” is also available for only $90, offering admission to ten regular-season shows (excluding the IRA Sprint Car special and Red Clay Classic) for the price of nine.

Prior to Saturday’s race program, “Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

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ABC Raceway Postpones Opener ’til May 24 FastLane car show still on for Saturday 5/10

May 10th, 2014

Ashland, WI — Mother Nature has a nasty habit of being cruel to Northland race tracks in the Spring, and this year she has held particularly true to form. The staff of the ABC Raceway begrudgingly made the decision earlier this week to postpone its 2014 season opener one week, until Saturday, May 24.

“Just like everyone else, we received a lot of snow this past Winter,” stated Raceway president Kurt Beeksma after the decision was agreed to on Monday. “Now with the thawing, it’s just been too wet and cold to get any work done (on the facility grounds).” Track workers are hoping for a little more favorable weather in the forecast so that efforts can begin in earnest to prepare the facility for what is slated to be a very eventful summer, as the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association will celebrate its 50th season of hosting stock car racing events in the Chequamegon Bay area.

In the meantime, the track’s car show and swap meet is still on for Saturday, May 10, at FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating on East Highway 2 in Ashland. The traditional season kick-off will be held from 10 am-2 pm and will feature a picnic lunch and a chance to meet several local race drivers and view stock cars on display. Area classic car and hot rod owners are welcome to park their prized possessions in FastLane’s front parking area and enjoy the festivities during the event as well.

Representatives of the ABC Raceway will be on hand to assist drivers with such issues as rules clarifications, reserving pit spots, licensing and memberships. Chris Bretting and his FastLane staff will also be available to help with racing parts and equipment needs, plus valuable tips and information.

The car show will be held rain or shine, there is no charge for admission, and the public is certainly welcome. A special edition of “Race Night” will be broadcast on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and streamed online at www.wbszfm.com, from 10 am until noon live from the event.

The open practice session originally set for May 10 has been cancelled due to the wet grounds. If this is rescheduled, the club will post the date and time on the Raceway’s website as well as in this publication / on this site. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com

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ABC Raceway Set for 50th Anniversary Season

April 20th, 2014

Ashland, WI –In the Spring of 1965, the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association, made up of a group of ardent race fans who volunteered their time and efforts, hosted its first-ever organized stock car racing event at the old Chequamegon Raceway just south of Ashland.

The 2014 season marks the 50th anniversary of continuously-scheduled stock car racing action at what is now the ABC Raceway under the guidance of that group, marking one of the longest tenures of any organization of its kind in the country. In celebration of its Golden Anniversary season, the Raceway will host one of the most enthusiastic and exciting schedules in its history, with the racing action every Saturday night from mid-May until late August spiced up by themes associated with the milestone.

“This will be a very special season for everyone who is now and ever has been associated with the club and the track,” stated Raceway president Kurt Beeksma recently. “There’s a lot of history in that red-clay oval, and our organization is planning to do all we can to make this a very memorable summer of racing.” Among the celebration-themed activities planned at the venerable three-eighths-mile oval are a 50-bike giveaway night for the kids, as well as nights in which the track will give away 50 racing t-shirts to its fans in attendance. In addition, a special bonus program has been set up for drivers competing at the track this summer whose cars sport a special 50th Anniversary decal.
Foremost in the ABC Raceway’s efforts to make this a stand-out summer is the establishment of a Hall of Fame, and the induction of its first-ever class, to honor the drivers, volunteer workers, and fans who have helped in the success of the facility over the past half-century. “An ABC Raceway Hall of Fame is long overdue,” explained HoF committee spokesman Eric Erickson. “There have been so many people who have worked, contributed and donated so much to our track’s long history, and we as a club felt the need to recognize those people, thank them, and remember them.” The inaugural inductees into the newly-formed Hall of Fame will be announced during the track’s opening night of racing action, on May 17, and formally inducted as part of the July 19 race program.

As in years past, the season kicks off on Saturday, May 10, with the annual car show and swap meet at FastLane Motorsports on Highway 2 East in Ashland. Many area drivers will put their racing machines on display, and the general public is welcome to get an up-close look at the cars, visit with the drivers, and enjoy a great picnic lunch. Area car enthusiasts with classic cars and hot-rods are also welcome to display them in FastLane’s front parking area.

Regular weekly Saturday night action features the WISSOTA-sanctioned Modified, Super Stock and Midwest Modified divisions, as well as the Raceway’s Six-Cylinders and entry-level Pure Stocks. Along with the season opener on the 17th, the May portion of the schedule includes a full five-division racing program on the 24th, and free admission for all drivers competing at the track on the 31st. During the month of June fans will enjoy some of the track’s most popular and longest-running events, including the kids’ “Meet the Drivers” night on the 7th. “Turn Back the Clock” night on June 14 will include presentation and recognition of many of the track’s past champions, and the program on the 21st will include a “Race to Win the Fight Against Cancer” fundraiser, while the half-price-admission “Jam the Stands” night is set for June 28.

Things will continue to get interesting in July, when the ABC Raceway begins its popular series of division-specific special events with the Six-Cylinder “Summer Sizzler” on the 5th, which will be run along with the AmsOil Qualifer features for the three WISSOTA classes. After the kids’ bike race night on July 12, the annual “Modified Mayhem” special will be held in conjuction with the Hall of Fame induction ceremonies on the 19th. Then on July 26 the Interstate Racing Association’s mighty 410 winged sprint cars will again fly around the three-eighths-mile red-clay oval at triple-digit speeds, while the Super Stocks will compete in their annual “Challenge” event on that same night. The action comes to a boil in August, as the Mid-Mods get their night in the spotlight during their “Madness” event on the 2nd, followed a huge 50th Anniversary Celebration night planned for the 9th. The 11th annual “Pure Excitement 25″ for the Pure Stocks on the 16th will again draw a huge crowd of cars going for big money, and the regular season wraps up with Championship Saturday on August 23. The ABC Raceway will then host its crown jewel event, the Red Clay Classic, to cap off the 2014 stock car racing season in the Northland. The 39th annual running of the prestigious event is set for Friday and Saturday, September 26-27, and will again draw upwards of 200 WISSOTA Mid-Mods, Super Stocks, Modifieds and – in their only appearance here all summer – Late Models. Drivers from throughout the Upper Midwest and Canada will be on hand to compete for their share of one of the richest purses in short-track racing, in excess of $80,000.

Once again supporting the action and activities at the red-clay oval is another outstanding group of generous local businesses. A welcome new sponsor, the Lake Shore Cafe of Ashland, will join the many long-time supporters, including the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce; the Ashland-Bayfield County Sportsmen’s Club; the Bad River Lodge, Casino & Convention Center of Odanah; Chicago Iron & Supply of Ashland; FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating of Ashland; Heartland Communications of Ashland; Little Caesar’s Pizza of Ashland; the NAPA Auto Parts Stores of Ashland and Washburn; Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland; Northern Finnish
Mutual Insurance of Marengo; the Northern State Bank of Ashland and the surrounding communities; Northern Wisconsin Fence of Phillips; Pepsi and Northstar Beverage of Hurley; PetroChoice; WIMI-FM of Ironwood, MI; and Xtreme Sign & Graphix and X-Wraps
of Ashland.

For all regular weekly shows except July 26, admission tickets for adults (ages 13 & older) are only $10, while fans ages 12 and under are welcome for free when accompanied by a paying adult. Fans can also purchase a grandstand “punch pass” at the track for just $90, which will offer one paid-adult admission to any ten of the race nights from May through August with the exception of the IRA sprint car special.

During the summer portion of the schedule the pit admission price will also remain as last year, at $25 per person. The grandstand and pit gates will open every Saturday night during the regular season at 5 pm, with hot laps starting at 6:15 and racing set for around 7 pm. “Race Night,” the region’s only weekly live pre-race radio program, will again provide up-to-date track news and weather information airing on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and streamed online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

ABC Raceway – 2014 Schedule
May 10 – car show & swap meet at FastLane Motorsports, Ashland, 10 am-2 pm
May 17 – season opener, Hall of Fame announcements pres by Northern Wisconsin Fence
May 24 – race program pres by Lake Shore Cafe
May 31 – free driver admission pres by Xtreme Sign & Graphix
June 7 – kids’ “Meet the Drivers” night pres by Little Caesar’s Pizza
June 14 – “Turn Back the Clock” night, past champions’ recognition pres by Northern Finnish Mutual Insurance
June 21 – “Race to Win the Fight Against Cancer” fundraiser night pres by Northern Clearing Inc
June 28 – “Jam the Stands” night pres by WBSZ 93.3 FM & Heartland Communications
July 5 – 50-bike giveaway, Six-Cylinder “Summer Sizzler,” AmsOil Qualifiers pres by Bad River Lodge, Casino & Convention Center
July 12 – kids’ bike races pres by Chicago Iron & Supply
July 19 – Hall of Fame induction ceremonies, “Modified Mayhem” pres by PetroChoice
July 26 – IRA sprint car special pres by Northern State Bank, “Super Stock Challenge” pres by FastLane Motorsports (no modifieds)
August 2 – “Mid-Mod Madness” pres by NAPA Auto Parts
August 9 – 50th Anniversary celebration pres by Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce
August 16 – “Pure Excitement 25″ pres by ABC Sportsmen’s Club
August 23 – Championship Saturday pres by Pepsi, Northstar Beverage and WIMI 99.7 FM
September 26-27 – 39th annual Red Clay Classic

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ABC Raceway Seeking Hall of Fame Nominees

February 11th, 2014

Ashland, WI — During the 2014 stock car racing season the ABC Raceway will celebrate its 50th season of continuous operation under the direction of the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association.

As one can imagine, during that long a period of time there have been a great many racers, track workers, and other fans, volunteers and supporters who have helped shape the Raceway into one of the Upper Midwest’s finest racing facilities. With that in mind, the Raceway is now welcoming nominees for an inaugural group to be inducted into its newly-formed Hall of Fame.

“The club feels that the time to honor and pay tribute to the many great racers, track workers and fans who have been such as huge part of the success of our track is long overdue,” says Eric Erickson, who is heading up the Hall of Fame committee. “We need to recognize those folks who’ve done so much and worked so hard, and to have this coincide with the track’s 50th anniversary season is a great opportunity to get this done.”

Nominations are being accepted in three categories. Driver Achievement nominees are required to have been retired from active racing for at least five years, with emphasis on their accomplishments, impact and influence on racing primarily at the ABC Raceway as well as at other tracks.

Nominees for the Volunteers category are required to have contributed at least ten years to the ABC Raceway and to have brought significant positive contributions in their support and promotion of the facility. Qualifying nominees for the Fans, Sponsors and Supporters category will include those recognized for their generous and contributions to the track and positive influence to the area racing community as a whole.

Nominations in each of the categories can be submitted by mail to the committee at ABC Raceway, c/o Hall of Fame, PO Box 362, Ashland, WI 54806, or by e-mail to abcracewayhof@abcraceway.com. A nomination form is available online at the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com; the form must be completed and include two letters of recommendation in order for the nominee to be considered.

Nominations must be received by the committee no later than March 1, 2014, in order to be eligible for the inaugural class.

The club plans to construct a public display of the inductees’ achievements and contributions on the Raceway grounds, which will be expanded as the inductees from subsequent years are added.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

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ABC Raceway Celebrates 2013′s Best with Banquet

January 22nd, 2014

Ashland, WI– The ABC Raceway closed out its activities for its 2013 stock car racing season with its annual awards banquet on Saturday night at the AmericInn in Ashland.

Over 200 racers, crew members, sponsors, track workers and fans enjoyed a social hour and a buffet meal catered by Lake Shore Cafe before the presentation of over 80 trophies and special awards. Divisional champions were presented with commemorative jackets, and the top ten in points in each class, as well as those receiving special recognition, were awarded trophies.

The Raceway’s Board president Kurt Beeksma opened the festivities with comments of congratulations toward the champions and words of appreciation toward the many sponsors who have been so generous in supporting the efforts of the track. Beeksma also recognized the hard work of the track’s Board of Directors and its all-volunteer staff in making 2013 a successful season. Beeksma also alluded to the Raceway’s plans for its upcoming 50th anniversary season as well as its efforts toward the opening of its long-awaited Hall of Fame.

Al Uotinen of Superior was presented his fifth championship jacket and trophy as the track’s 2013 WISSOTA Modified champion. Uotinen used consistent front-running efforts to earn the points needed for the title, as he became only the fourth champ in the Raceway’s 49 seasons to win a title without the benefit of a feature win. He did, however, score three heat wins and finished sixth or better in eight of the nine features run during the regular season.

Uotinen won the title by a mere nine points over Kevin Eder of Ashland. Curt Myers of Cameron, Bill Byholm of Glidden, and 2011 ABC Mod champ Steve Stuart of Ashland completed the top five. Sixth through tenth included six-time track champ Jeff Spacek of Phillips, rookie-of-the-year Brian Mikkonen of Iron River, Pat Cook of Washburn, rookie Neil Balduc of Bessemer, MI, and Rick Rivord of Superior.

Scott Lawrence of Superior was honored for his track-record tenth consecutive ABC Raceway WISSOTA Super Stock crown. Lawrence, who also owns three WISSOTA Street Stock championships at the Ashland track, again showed the consistency and strength that has made him one of the top racers in his division in all of WISSOTA, by chalking up two feature victories and a division-best six heat wins.

Lawrence was not unchallenged, however, as only eight points back in the final rundown was 1993 Super Stock champ Randy Spacek of Phillips. Myers collected his second third-place trophy of the night, while Ken Truscott of Greenland, MI, and 2013 rookie-of-the-year Shawn McFadden Jr of Ashland filled out the final top five in points. Behind them in the top ten were Mason’s Nick Oreskovich, Cory Casari of Montreal, Shawn Rivord of South Range, Superior’s Dave Flynn, and five-time ABC Raceway champion Greg Kuklinski of Ironwood, MI.

Collecting his second-straight WISSOTA Midwest Modified title was Ashland’s Travis Nye. His season included four feature victories and two heat wins in 2013, but the campaign was made even more special by joining his father Nick on the champion’s stage to become the only father-son pairing to win titles in the same season at ABC.

The younger Nye’s 13-point championship margin was the largest at the track in 2013, proving the quality of competition at the Ashland track. Impressive youngster Cole Spacek of Phillips was runner-up in the division, while up-and-coming young hotshoes Paul Suzik of Ironwood, MI, and Ryan Adamzak of Ashland finished ahead of veteran and three-time ABC champ Duane Dunbar of Marenisco, MI, in the top five. The second five in Mid-Mod points included Medford’s Paul Niznik, Ashland’s Rick Przybylski, Tanner Byholm of Glidden, Washburn’s Chris Bretting, and Tyler Luger of Iron River.

Tanner Hicks of Ashland was honored as the Midwest Mod division’s rookie-of-the-year. In honor of his late friend and former popular racer Keane Laakson, Dale Coddington of Hayward dusted off an old Super Stock chassis that Laakson used to run, converted it to an ABC Raceway Six-Cylinder, added Laakson’s familiar number 23 to the doors, and campaigned it at Ashland in 2013. In doing so, Coddington earned the division’s points title. He drove the car to two feature victories, four feature runner-up efforts, and four heat wins to win his second championship (2009) by just eight points.

Tyler Hudack of Ashland was closest to Coddington in the final standings, while 2013 rookie-of-the-year Tiffany Hudack of Ashland finished an impressive third. Two-time defending and four-time Sixes champ Patrick Beeksma of Ironwood, MI, landed fourth in final points, while Marengo’s Scott Ovaska celebrated a return to full-time racing with a fifth-place finish. Sixth through tenth in the standings included 2000 Sixes champ Ron Hmielewski of Marengo, Ashland racers Forrest Schultz and Tyler Vernon, Marengo’s Zach Pagels, and DeJay Mihalek of Ashland.

Nick Nye of Ashland joined his son as ABC Raceway champion after taking the top spot in the track’s Pure Stock standings. The senior Nye scored a feature win on opening night, but it was his two A-main wins late in the summer that nailed down his first title since his three-peat in the track’s Street Stock class in 1980-’82. Nye was a mere eight points up on two-time ABC champ Tim Carbon of Highbridge, while defending champ Matt Deragon of Ashland, Jeff Christman of South Range, and the brother team effort of former ABC champs Tim and Chad Carlson of Superior rounded out the top five. The second five in final points consisted of the rookie-of-he-year team effort of Chris Johnson and Ryan Savoy of Superior, Terran Spacek of Phillips, Brandle Pupp of Ashland, Rita Anderson of South Range, and the team of Matt Flint, Charles Jahn and Andy Compton of Highbridge and Ashland.

Cole Spacek was awarded the trophy for Most Improved Driver in 2013, while the Sportsman of the Year honor was posthumously awarded to Ken Tody Jr of Ashland, who passed away after a tragic automobile accident during Red Clay Classic weekend this past September.
Kurt Beeksma presented the prestigious President’s Award for outstanding service to the Raceway to Mary Bowers, and he also presented Cheryl Klobucher with the Raceway’s Award of Excellence, for her long-time involvement and efforts with the organization.

Following the awards presentation was a drawing for pit passes and pit spots for the drivers, as well as door prizes for the guests. Attendees then enjoyed music by BB King and participated in a Wii bowling tournament.

The 2014 stock car racing season at the ABC Raceway is scheduled to kick off in mid-May. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For more information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

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Anvelink Runs to First-Ever Red Clay Classic Win Anderson, Myers, Halopka are repeat winners

October 2nd, 2013

Ashland, WI, — Nick Anvelink of Navarino pulled away from Jake Redetzke to collect his first-ever win at the ABC Raceway during the season-ending 38th annual Red Clay Classic.

With the two-day AmsOil Dirt Track Series race event spilling over into very early Sunday morning, the three other feature winners – Ashley Anderson of Eau Claire, Curt Myers of Cameron and Shane Halopka of Greenwood – made for an all-Wisconsin victory lane at the Northland’s traditional stock car racing finale for the first time since 2004.

Tim’s Automotive Machine of Bloomer and FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating of Ashland generously boosted the already event-record purse to over $80,000, and a huge crowd of well over 2,000 in the stands enjoyed summertime temperatures in the 70s for Friday’s heat-race action and braved crisp autumn conditions for Saturday’s big-money portion of the show.

All four championship runs struggled through various-sized cases of yellow fever despite a track that was fast, wide and smooth. Just two laps into the 50-lap WISSOTA Late Model feature Travis Budisalovich skidded to a stop on the front
straight with an engine fire to bring about the first of that race’s eight yellow-flag slowdowns. While the fire was quickly extinguished Zach Wohlers, who was running fourth at the time, hustled his car to the pit area and did not return. John Kaanta, who started alongside polesitter Jake Redetzke on the front row, shot out to the initial lead but could not shake loose of the two-time defending race winner before the Budisalovich stop. After the restart Brent Larson flew to the top line and, within two more circuits, swept around the lead pair, with Redetzke grabbing second.

Larson had just started to extend his lead, and Anvelink had moved by Kaanta for third, when the pace was slowed for a series of delays, starting with fifth-running Kyle Peterlin was spun on lap 6. Back under green Peterlin swapped fourth with Kaanta until lap 8, when debris was spotted on the track, and then, as Anvelink took second from Redetzke, Tim McMann’s ride failed him on lap 9. Redetzke took second back from Anvelink just before Darrell Nelson’s spin on lap
11, but Anvelink returned the favor on the next restart before Eric Pember’s lap 12 loop. The field then settled in to click off 18 uninterrupted laps, with Larson fending off a three-wide challenge for the lead before charging away to a
1.3-second buffer within just five laps. As Larson began contending with slower traffic on lap 20, Anvelink began to cut
into the leader’s margin. On lap 27 Anvelink was on Larson’s bumper, and over the next two laps he worked the low groove to eventually take the lead away. Then, on lap 30, Larson slipped up the track while attempting to pass backmarker Todd Gehl; the heavy contact caused Gehl to spin, and Larson was penalized to the tail of the field for the incident, ending his chance at a second RCC crown.

During the long green-flag run Nelson – who had started 23rd on the 26-car grid – had meticulously worked his way into the top five, restarting fourth after the Larson-Gehl conflict. Mike Goodremote, who had been sent to the back for an earlier incident, restarted seventh, slipped past Jeff Massingill and Nelson and made a thrilling thread-the-needle move between Peterlin and Kaanta to try to take third, but both Nelson and Peterlin recovered to shuffle him back to fifth, with Nelson earning third in the process. By this time Anvelink had a 1.7-second edge on Redetzke, but on lap 38 Lance Hofer’s spin brought the field together one last time. Over the final dozen laps Anvelink built himself a slight cushion, and although Redetzke pulled to within a half-second at the white flag he could get no closer, as Anvelink held on for the $4,000 landmark win. Nelson was quite a distance back for an impressive third-place run, while Peterlin and Goodremote completed the top five.

Pember came home sixth, Larson charged back to a seventh-place finish and collected the fast-lap bonus of $150 with a late-race tour of the three-eighths-mile oval in 16.408 seconds, and Kaanta, 20th-starting Jeff Provinzino and Dave Esse completed the top ten.

Although the WISSOTA Modified headliner ran 35 laps, Anderson’s route to the win was much longer, as he rode the outer perimeter of the track throughout the run. Kelly Estey outran polestarter Jay Richardson to claim early honors, but before
three circuits were scored Anderson had swept around both for the lead. Brandon Jensen followed Anderson by Richardson to third, as Anderson stretched his lead to over a second during the first eight green-flag laps. As the fast pace continued Anderson built his advantage on Estey and Jensen despite catching slower traffic on lap 14, but the field came back to the leader’s rear push-bar after a get-together involving Pember and Scott Hudack. Over the next three laps the event was slowed twice more – for spins by Jeff Spacek on lap 15 and Rick Rivord on lap 17 – before Anderson could rebuild his cushion. During that stretch Jensen and Estey swapped the runner-up position a couple of times, and after Richardson grabbed third from Jensen before the lap 17 caution he took a shot at swiping second from Estey but got pinched against the back-straight guard rail during the three-wide move and settled back to fifth behind Steve Stuart.

Anderson’s lead was a second-and-a-half before the yellow lights came on for the final time on lap 24 when Brent Prochnow’s ride stopped with a flat tire. From there Anderson pulled away to a nearly one-second margin for his second Red Clay Classic victory; he also grabbed the “Champion’s Challenge” bonus of $500 and the fast-lap bonus with a time of 17.124 seconds for a ABC Raceway-record payday for Mods of $3,650. Jensen got the best of the battle with Estey for second, and Richardson retook fourth from Stuart in the closing laps. Former RCC champ Jody Bellefeuille earned sixth ahead of 15th-starting Jesse Glenz, Matt Leer, two-time defending race champ Joey Jensen (who started 18th) and Pat Hoffman.

Myers became the first ABC Raceway regular to win the RCC WISSOTA Super Stock feature since Greg Kuklinski in 2002, but he had to survive two green-white-checkered finishes to put Don Koivisto’s familiar number 33 in Victory Lane. Myers grabbed the early advantage from impressively strong polestarter Mark Stender before Cory Casari’s spin stopped action after just one lap, and Myers held that lead over all 30 laps despite persistent challenges from track champ Scott Lawrence, Stender, Eric Olson and hard-charging Kevin Burdick. A four-car mess on lap 5 kept the pack in close formation, and Dave Flynn’s spin before the next lap was scored stalled the pace again. But even though the next 17 laps went non-stop Myers couldn’t entirely shake free from the wolfpack on his tail, with Olson and Burdick swapping third spot right behind Lawrence. By lap 11 Randy Spacek had joined the top-five battle, soon after joined by Nick Oreskovich, but all the while Myers maintained a scant half-second lead on Lawrence. Positions shuffled among the top ten runners with nearly every circuit until lap 22, when Casari slowed and pulled into the infield grass. On the restart Olson challenged Lawrence for second, but the caution for Kevin Eder’s stalled ride negated the move. Olson repeated the move on the restart, and this time it counted, while Burdick worked his way around Spacek for fourth and Oreskovich followed to fifth.

Myers stretched his lead on Olson to nearly a second with five laps remaining, and Burdick and Oreskovich displaced Lawrence two laps later for third and fourth on lap 27. As the field was heading for the white flag Tommy Richards, running deep in the top ten, spun and collected Derek Vesel and Tristan LaBarge, forcing the first of the two green-white-checkered sprints.

On the restart Spacek slipped up the banking in turn 1 and slapped the guard rail; he kept going but lost significant ground to the leaders. However, before the lap was completed Oreskovich and Stender came together, and a second attempt to finish the last two laps was required. Under green Burdick used one last strong drive to get around Olson for second, while Myers held on for his 17th career win in Ashland and fourth this season, as the field crossed under the checkers in a bunch. Myers also collected the “Champion’s Challenge” and fast-lap (18.003 seconds) bonuses for a track-record check for Super Stocks of $2,450. Brian Mikkonen lined up seventh on that final restart and surged through to fourth, and Lawrence held on to fifth. Joey Jensen, Oreskovich, Spacek, divisional rookie Shawn McFadden Jr, and Ken Truscott filled out the second five.

Inaugural RCC WISSOTA Midwest Modified champion Skeeter Estey fought off Mike Truscott from the pole for the early lead in their 25-lap A-feature, and Estey stayed out front after a lap 1 caution stop for John Feirn’s get-together with Mark Kangas. Halopka and his brother Kerry restarted third and fourth until Rivord slipped past Kerry on lap 2, and Shane Halopka worked around Truscott a lap later and began his quest for the win on the restart after Feirn’s second spin on lap 5. Halopka tried a three-wide move to take the lead from Estey along with Truscott, but he couldn’t make it stick. But when Truscott slipped and collected Rivord on lap 6 it took Truscott out of the hunt. Estey and Halopka scooted away to try to decide the win between themselves, with tenth-starting track champ Travis Nye moving up to third, but Tyler Luger’s stalled ride on lap 8 kept the rest of the field close.

Kerry Halopka’s spin sent him to the back on the restart attempt, after which brother Shane made his winning move during the next lap, grabbing the lead with an outside pass. Dan Kingsley took fourth from Rivord just prior to a Kangas spin on lap 12 that stopped the show, and on that restart Estey’s car broke loose, creating a chain-reaction that sent several cars scrambling and caused Cole Spacek’s racer to tangle up with Rick Przybylski’s while both were running in the top ten – a mess that took almost 15 minutes to pull apart.

Estey left the track after being advised that he would be pinned with the caution, leaving Halopka to hold off Nye and Kinglsey over the remaining 13 laps, which ran off without further incident. Przybylski slipped past Rivord and Kingsley for third, with Spacek following to fourth, before Kingsley’s car coasted safely into the infield with mechanical issues with ten laps left. Halopka’s lead had stretched to over 1.25 seconds when the checkered flag fell, giving him his second straight RCC title and sixth ABC Raceway career win, and paying him $1,100 with the $500 “Champion’s Challenge” bonus. Spacek slipped past Przybylski in the final two laps for third, and Rivord held firm to fifth.

Truscott made a strong recovery for sixth-place money, while Skeeter’s brother Mack Estey came home seventh in his first-ever Classic appearance. Ryan Adamzak, Canadian visitor Cody Wolkowski and Willy Thompson completed the top ten. Skeeter Estey set the fast lap early in the run at 17.488 seconds for that bonus. The total car count of 161 entries included 26 Late Models, 41 Modifieds, 48 Super Stocks and 46 Mid-Mods. Those drivers who recorded the fastest timed laps in the four features were awarded the $150 bonuses from Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland, and NorTrax Equipment and Northland Lawn, Sport & Equipment donated track-maintenance and other equipment for use by the Raceway crews during the weekend.

The ABC Raceway’s annual Awards Banquet will be held in January; fans and drivers are encouraged to watch the track’s website, , for more information. The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road.

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Father-Son Combo Claim Points Titles at ABC Uotinen, Lawrence, Coddington also champs

August 27th, 2013

Ashland, WI, – On a muggy, windy late-August night, a fast-paced Championship Saturday presented by Northstar Beverage, Pepsi and WIMI-FM at the ABC Raceway included its fill of drama, plot twists and history. And when the AmsOil Dirt Track Series program ended, all five points champions were repeat performers. Al Uotinen of Superior raced to his fifth WISSOTA Modified track title and first since 2006, while Scott Lawrence of Superior chalked up his tenth consecutive WISSOTA Super Stock crown and 13th ABC Raceway championship overall. And Hayward’s Dale Coddington scored his second Six-Cylinder championship to go with his 2009 title.

But the biggest celebration of the night may have been in the camps of son Travis and father Nick Nye, both of Ashland. Travis successfully as WISSOTA Midwest Modified champ, while Nick scored the feature win to earn his fourth track title
and first since 1982 in the Pure Stocks. The pair became the first father-son combo ever to claim championships in the track’s 49-year history.

Uotinen, who was tied with Curt Myers in points coming into the night, won his heat race to hold a six-point lead going into their A-main. For the fourth straight week the “big Mods” ran off their 20 laps non-stop (this time in six minutes and eight seconds), as Brian Mikkonen worked the outside on Destin Lorimor and pole starter Paul Niznik for the early lead two laps in. Mikkonen stretched his lead to over half a second, while Steve Stuart, who started outside on row 4, had already swept around Niznik for second by lap 5.

Stuart quickly reeled in Mikkonen, and the lead pair came across the start-finish line side by side to complete lap 7, but Stuart clipped the infield marker tires in turn 1 and lost momentum, giving Mikkonen a half-second of breathing room for a couple of laps. Stuart came charging back to within a car-length with nine laps to go, while behind them Uotinen moved up to fourth with an outside move on Pat Cook. Stuart worked inside on Mikkonen with six laps left and took over the lead for good, while Kevin Eder, who was a length back at the time of the winning pass, drove in on Mikkonen to challenge for second, swapping the position before claiming it for good on lap 16.

Stuart, the 2011 champ from Ashland, won going away for his third straight win and track-best fifth in the past six races here, while also posting the fastest lap of the race with a time of 17.726 seconds. Eder’s run to second also gave him second in the final points rundown, while Mikkonen finished third at a distance ahead of champion Uotinen and Cook.

The Super Stocks were a lap 2 caution flag short of a non-stop 20-lapper of their own, with Lawrence leading Randy Spacek by six points when the feature started. Front-row starters Nick Oreskovich and Shawn McFadden Jr duked it out for the early lead before Shawn Rivord and Mike Hince got together for a spin in turn 3 for the lone stoppage of the race.

Oreskovich led the remainder of the race, easily pulling away to a one-second lead on McFadden one lap after the restart. Myers chased down McFadden and challenged him for a number of laps for second, while Ken Truscott sat comfortably in fourth ahead of the championship battle between fifth-place Spacek and seventh-place Lawrence, with Wayne Stricker playing buffer.

Stricker made a strong move around Spacek on lap 5, but he then drifted out of the wide racing groove and lost more than he gained, and from there Lawrence and Spacek shuffled back and forth before Lawrence gained fifth position for good just past mid-race, clinching the title.

Out front Oreskovich’s lead topped out at nearly two seconds on lap 14, when Myers finally dove inside on McFadden for second. From there, with lapped traffic helping, Myers chipped away at Oreskovich’s advantage until, coming under the white flag, he was on the leader’s bumper. But the youngster from Mason held off the veteran for his second feature win of the season, while McFadden came home third ahead of Truscott and champ Lawrence.

The one title that seemed least in doubt was for the WISSOTA Midwest Modified honors, with Travis Nye’s advantage over Cole Spacek at nine points heading into the 15-lap finale. Rick Przybylski pushed his new car to the early lead by sweeping around Tanner Hicks on lap 2. After Dennis Baldwin’s spin stopped the action, Spacek worked outside on Byholm to take third, and he then gained another spot on lap 3 when he overtook Hicks for second.

Nye, who was running sixth, lost a couple spots and most of his points cushion as Spacek threatened to take the lead from Przybylski, but on lap 8 Baldwin spun again just in front of the leaders. Nye restarted ninth and, for a few moments, lost the championship as Spacek edged past Przybylski for the lead on lap 10. Ryan Adamzak, who started the race on row 5, joined the lead fracas and raced with Spacek and Przybylski three-wide on lap 13, just before Spacek and Przybylski got together and spun at the bottom of turn 3. Spacek was tagged as the cause of the incident and was sent to the back of the field, while Przybylski rushed off to the pit area to change a flat tire and restarted next to him.

Adamzak, of Ashland, held on throughout the green-white-checkered finish for his first ABC feature win since July 2011, while Duane Dunbar passsed 13th-starting Mickey Nosser for second on the final lap. Byholm capped off a strong night with a fourth-place run, while Paul Suzik claimed fifth.

Nye came home in seventh to secure his back-to-back titles. Spacek posted the fastest circuit of the go with a lap of 18.281 seconds. The drama really heated up during the Six-Cylinder feature, with Coddington leading Tyler Hudack by five coming into the night, then adding another point to the margin after winning his heat race. However, Hudack had the upper hand early in the 15-lap feature run as he started one row ahead of Coddington and gained several positiosn early as Coddington dealt with an ill-handling race car and heavy traffic. Tad Bretting set the early pace for two laps before Pat Beeksma grabbed the lead away. After a yellow-flag slowdown for a Bill Anderson spin, Ron Hmielewski drove past Bretting for second while Coddington lost a couple more spots. Hudack worked past Scott Ovaska for fourth on lap 4 and then Bretting on lap 5 for third before a two-car scuffle stopped the run again.

Hudack drove hard into turns 3 and 4 to muscle his way into second on the next green-flag start, giving him the points lead for the moment as Coddington strugglEd in ninth, but Hudack pushed too hard in turn 4 on lap 8 and spun, sending him to the back of the field for the restart and essentially ending his title hopes. Tyler’s sister Tiffany, running third on the restart, was turned around by Hmielewski on that re-do, and the next attempt to go was stalled by debris on the track, but over the final seven laps Beeksma wasn’t to be caught, stretching his lead to over 2.5 seconds when the Ironwood, MI, veteran took the checkered flag for His 30th career ABC Six-Cylinder win.

Over the final five laps Coddington found the handle on his ride and weaved through the field into third to nail down the title, coming home just behind Tiffany Hudack. Twelfth-starting Neil Adamzak and a charging Tyler Hudack completed the top five.

Only two points separated Nick Nye and Matt Deragon heading into the 12-lap Pure Stock finale to close out the Raceway’s regular season, and while early heartbreak for Deragon settled the championship early in the run, the finish of the race itself was still an edge-of-the-seat affair. Jeff Christman slipped around pole-starter Brandle Pupp for the initial lead, then had to do it again as Ryan Savoy, who drove past Pupp for second, looped his ride before the first lap was complete.

Nye swept around Tim Carbon for second after the restart and immediately challenged Christman, but Deragon’s night ended right then when a broken axle helped spin the car on the front straight. With Deragon out, Nye had the title mathematically wrapped up, but the race was far from over.

Nye grabbed the lead from Christman two laps after the restart, and Ken Tody Jr joined in on the fun, taking third from Carbon and second from Christman within one circuit. Savoy recovered enough to displace Christman in third on lap 4, and at halfway Savoy was working the outside line on Tody for second. But Tody returned the favor and then charged inside against Nye for the lead. The lead trio swapped positions multiple times within the final four laps, each owning the lead at various times, but coming under the white flag Nye grabbed the lead from Tody for the final time and held on by less than a car-length for his third win of the season and his first points title in over 30 years. Carbon got by Savoy on the final lap for third, and Christman held on for fifth as the top five finished in close formation.

The staff of the ABC Raceway will now make preparations for the 38th annual Red Clay Classic on Friday and Saturday, September 27-28. An event-record $80,000 will be offered to the nearly 200 WISSOTA-sanctioned Late Model, Modified, Super Stock and Midwest Mod entries expected to compete. Reserved seating, camping and pit spots are still available, and information is available by logging on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com, or by calling (715) 682-2672 (tickets and camping) or (715) 746-2390 (pit spots).

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Saturday’s Finale at ABC to Decide 2013 Championships

August 24th, 2013

Ashland, WI — It all boils down to this Saturday night. The ABC Raceway will host its Championship Saturday regular-season finale for the 2013 stock car racing campaign on August 24, with the scheduled five-division program to be presented by Pepsi, Northstar Beverage of Hurley, and WIMI, 99.7 FM, of Ironwood, MI.

The points champions in each of the five divisions will be determined at the conclusion of the race program, but there is still a lot of racing to be done in order to crown those champs.

Most significantly will be the battle for the track’s WISSOTA Modified title. Curt Myers of Cameron enters the curtain-closer in a dead tie with former four-time ABC Mod champ Al Uotinen of Superior for the division’s points lead. Even with WISSOTA’s new-for-2013 rule in which a driver’s lowest single-night points effort is thrown out, this division’s biggest trophy will likely go simply to whichever of these two drivers has the best overall night, which will make for a very entertaining battle.

Saturday night may also be historic in that it could mark an amazing achievement for Scott Lawrence of Superior, who has proven himself to be one of the region’s best WISSOTA Super Stock racers of the last decade – if not the best. Lawrence, who holds a five-point advantage on Randy Spacek of Phillips, will look to nail down his tenth consecutive Super Stock title in Ashland – an impressive accomplishment when you consider the talented competition that loads up this division at most every track in the area.

Travis Nye of Ashland may have the easiest time nailing down a championship on Saturday, as he holds a ten-point advantage on sophomore sensation Cole Spacek of Phillips in the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds. The defending champ has a division-best four feature wins and has only finished out of the top ten once all season in a feature, and taking into consideration the points “throw-out” rule he would have to suffer a disasterous night in order to give Spacek a shot at the title. The three WISSOTA-sanctioned divisions will have one more shot at conquering the three-eighths-mile northern Wisconsin oval during the 38th annual Red Clay Classic here on September 27-28.

Hayward’s Dale Coddington recaptured the points lead in the Raceway’s Six-Cylinder division after Ashland’s Tyler Hudack struggled through his worst night of the season last weekend. Coddington, the 2009 ABC champ, turned a two-point deficit into a five-point lead over Hudack, but that only proves that, should the tables be reversed, Hudack is by no means out of contention.

If Nick Nye of Ashland can hold off defending champ Matt Deragon of Ashland in the Pure Stock points chase for one more night, the celebration would be almost too sweet to imagine. After all, the title would be his first since his three-peat in the old Street Stock class here in 1980-’82, and if his son Travis repeats in the Mid-Mods they would become the first father-son combo to win points titles at Ashland in the same season. Deragon, however, is only two points off the lead pace and has been running stronger over the past three shows, despite Nye’s win last week.

Of course, along with Championship Saturday, the season finale also means Fan Appreciation Night, which equals lots of great door prizes available to the fans from the race teams and the Raceway.

The grandstand and pit gates will open at 5 pm on Saturday, with hot laps starting at 6:15 and the first race of the evening set for around 7 pm. Adult admission tickets are just $10, while kids ages 12 and under get in for free when accompanied by a paying adult.

Prior to Saturday’s race program, “Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

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Two Nights Remain in Chase for ABC Raceway Titles

August 16th, 2013

Ashland, WI — In racing parlance, the 2013 stock car racing season at the ABC Raceway is heading into Turn 4.

The Raceway’s next-to-last points-paying race night of the summer will take place on the three-eighths-mile red-clay oval on Saturday night, for a five-division program presented by the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce and the Northern State
Bank.

With the season shortened significantly by an excessively wet, cold spring, the chances of any one or two drivers pulling away from the pack in his or her respective division’s points battles has been seriously thinned. Therefore, more drivers than is normal for the third weekend in August are still in the hunt for a track champion’s jacket and trophy in each
class.

Still, during last Saturday night’s race program here a handful of competitors did well to strengthen their title hopes. One driver who is used to the having a strangle-hold on the top spot in his class is Scott Lawrence of Superior, who took
over first place in the WISSOTA Super Stocks standings after winning his second feature of the season and fifth win ever in the track’s eighth annual “Super Stock Challenge.” Lawrence, the nine-time consecutive champ in this division, has
rocketed to the top with heat wins and feature finishes of first, second, second and first in each of the last four shows here.

Lawrence sits just two points up on Randy Spacek of Phillips and is eight ahead of Curt Myers of Cameron and Ken Truscott of Greenland, MI. Spacek and Myers have battled over the top spot since the start of the season. Myers has a mathematical chance to do something than no one has ever done in the nearly 50 years of racing at ABC – win points titles in two different divisions. The former WISSOTA national champ has made Ashland his Saturday night home track and has led the WISSOTA Modified standings here for several weeks – albeit by his fingernails. Myers will enter action Saturday with a three-point edge on four-time ABC Mod champ Al Uotinen of Superior and a seven-point advantage on Ashland hotshoe
Kevin Eder.

Less than 30 points separate the top six in the Mod standings, and that top six doesn’t even include who is arguably the hottest driver at the track – Ashland’s Steve Stuart, who has been absolutely dominant in three feature wins – two in
Ashland and one in Superior – over the past three weeks. If any one driver has more control over his division than any other at ABC in recent weeks, it has been Travis Nye in the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds. The division’s defending champ from Ashland has a track-best four feature wins and is the only driver here with a double-digit lead – 13 points over Phillips’ Cole Spacek. Nye went back-to-back when he was awarded last Saturday’s win after first-under-the-checkers Jeff Klopstein of Tomahawk was found to be using illegal suspension components in a post-race technical inspection after their feature.

The Six-Cylinder division has come down to a shoot-out between Ashland’s Tyler Hudack and Dale Coddington of Hayward for the championship, with Hudack holding a two-point edge on the 2009 champ heading into the weekend. Hudack overcame a
penalty to the back for causing an early restart in last Saturday’s feature to hustle all the way to the front, but Coddington recovered to take the lead back and hold on for the win in the late stages.

Even with all the visitors in town chasing the big money posted during last weekend’s “Pure Excitement 25″ Pure Stock special, Chad Carlson of Superior was able to muster a top-ten run and maintain the entry-level division’s points lead
with two shows to go. Veteran racer Nick Nye of Ashland is his closest challenger at five points back, while defending Pure Stock champ Matt Deragon of Ashland is within seven of the lead.

The grandstand and pit gates will open at 5 pm on Saturday, with hot laps starting at 6:15 and the first race of the evening set for around 7 pm. Adult admission tickets are just $10, while kids ages 12 and under get in for free when accompanied by a paying adult.

Prior to Saturday’s race program, “Race Night” will provide up-to-date track news and weather information live on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, from 4:30-6 pm.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

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Rapp, Lawrence Take Home Big Checks in ABC Specials

August 14th, 2013

Ashland, WI,– Al Rapp of Saginaw, MN, came from deep in the field to win the tenth annual Ashland-Bayfield County Sportsman’s Club “Pure Excitement 25″ feature and earned an event-record $1,315 for his efforts Saturday night at the ABC
Raceway.
The other big on-track winner was Scott Lawrence of Superior, who held off a late charge from Ken Truscott for his win in the eighth annual FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating “Super Stock Challenge.”

There were plenty of winners during the five-division AmsOil Dirt Track Series program, as fans saw a season-high 102 entries compete on a fast, wide racing surface, and many of those fans benefitted from the many door prizes given away and
drawings that were held on this cool, clear night.

The Pure Stocks’ 25-lap spotlight event included plenty of drama. At the drop of the initial green the lead pack went four-wide into the first turn before polesitter Tim Carlson nosed ahead. Terran Spacek drove around Carlson a lap later,
and Esten Nelson and Matt Hammitt passed by on either side of Carlson on lap 2. Nelson took over the lead on the next circuit, and Steve Udeen moved into third with an outside pass of Hammitt and Chad Carlson on lap 5, just before the first
caution flag came out for Tim Carlson’s stalled ride. On the ensuing restart Udeen got by Spacek for second, but the youngster charged right back by on the next go-around, and for the next four laps the lead pair separated themselves from the chaos behind them.

The strong, steady pace was slowed on lap 10 for a two-car spin, and while the field was waiting for its orders to realign a small fire broke out under the hood of the sixth-place car of Ken Tody Jr. Safety crews quickly extinguished the
flames, but a tough night for Tody was ended.

Chad Carlson slipped past Sapeck for second on the restart and battled with Nelson over the next three laps before another two-car spin interrupted the run, and during this caution sixth-running Lucas Carlson pulled to the pits. Spacek returned the earlier favor by sweeping around Chad Carlson to take second on the restart, while Rapp – who started 17th on the 24-car grid but had cracked the top 10 within the first five laps – restarted sixth and used the outside groove to overtake Hammitt, Udeen and Chad Carlson for third. On lap 17 Chad Carlson stopped with a flat right-front tire, forcing another stoppage, and when the green came back out Rapp tried to take the long way around the track to get by Spacek for second. A lap later, with the entire pack still in close formation, leader Nelson’s car slowed dramatically; as the field bounced around and tried to scatter to avoid him, Udeen, with nowhere to go, tagged the back of Nelson’s car, which then turned sideways and began a series of frightening barrel-rolls down the back straightaway, finally coming to rest on its roof. Safety crews responded and Nelson crawled out of the car, shaken but otherwise unhurt. Udeen led the field to the final six-lap run, but Spacek, who by virtue of his second-place position, elected to restart on the inside of the second row, allowing Rapp his preferred outside line, and Rapp took advantage by edging ahead of Spacek and then Udeen in consecutive laps to take the lead. Rapp set the pace to the checkers for his 14th career ABC Raceway win but first since August 2010. Spacek, Udeen, Matt Hammitt and Tim Carbon completed the top five.

“I’ve been coming here a long time,” an emotional Rapp told the fans from Victory Lane. “This win means a lot to me.”
Rapp’s record-setting check – the biggest ever paid to a Pure Stocker at ABC – included lap-leader and “hard-charger” bonuses. The total purse for the event was also a record-breaker, at an estimated $5,890, thanks in large part to generous fan and business contributions donated right up