Speiker tops USMTS field at DCS
KASSON, Minn. (Aug. 13, 2002) - It was a great evening for racing on Tuseday at the Dodge County Speedway when the USMTS Modifieds made their second appearance there of the season. Also on hand were the Midwest Modifieds.
In USMTS action, Mike Chasteen was impressive in winning the first of four qualifying heat races. Bob Timm finished a solid second followed by Mark Noble.
In the second heat, Jason Hughes was dominant, coming home first over Kelly Shryock and Tim Donlinger.
Corey Dripps picked up the win in the third heat, followed by Ron Schreiner, who looked very strong, and coming home third was Kenny Gaddis.
In the fourth and final heat, Chris Speiker took the checkers first over Tommy Myer and Johnny Bone.
The first feature of the evening was the Midwest Modifieds, and as expected, would be a great one. Dan Fagerlind and Jesse Frericks shared row one, and it was Frericks taking the lead and looking good out front. Neil Eckhart and Brian Hernandez gave chase, and it would be the polesitter, Fagerlind bringing out the first caution after making contact with the concrete in turn three.
On the restart, Eckhart powered his way to the lead, and other cars making a charge to the front were Carter Gerlach and Kenny Wytaske. Hernandez was starting to pressure Frericks for second, but the action slowed again when the caution waved for a breakdown, when Eric Condit rolled to a stop in turn four.
On the restart, Eckhart led the field to the cone followed by Frericks, Hernandez, Kenny Wytaske, and Matt Stark rounding out the top five.
When racing resumed, Gerlach entered the top five and was looking very strong on the top side of the track. Wytaske challenged Hernandez for third, and took over the spot. Gerlach closed on Wytaske, and still using the outside groove, shot by to take over third. Gerlach would then challenge Frericks for second, and would complete that pass also, but Wytaske was not done yet either. Again, Wytaske and Gerlach put on a show, contesting the second position once Wytaske got around Frericks. Wytaske made it work and started to pull away from Gerlach as the laps wound down. Eckhart was still out front and would pick up the win followed by Wytaske, Gerlach, Stark, and Frericks.
The USMTS Modifieds ran two B-Features and would take the top four finishers from each.
In the first one, Les Duellman dominated, and also transferring would be Mike Sorenson, Kenny Gaddis, and Tim Donlinger.
In the second, Jim Arnold looked very strong and would pick up the win to qualify, followed by Dave Siercks, Todd Scharkey, and Leroy Scharkey.
Track provisionals went to Nathan Kilwine and Steve Wetzstein. Wetzstein broke a motor while leading his heat race, and would be forced to change powerplants in the pits, and would make it out just in time for the start of the feature.
After driver introductions and a re-draw for the top eight starting positions, the running order was set for the 30 lap main event. Chris Speiker and Jason Hughes led the field to the green, and it would be Speiker leading lap one. Hughes and Speiker raced side by side for a handful of laps, and then Speiker would begin to pull away, finding the bottom to be the fast way around the track. Turning one flawless lap after another, Speiker began to build up a sizable lead over Hughes. Mark Noble looked strong in the opening laps, as did Corey Dripps and Mike Chasteen.
Dripps and Chasteen battled side by side for fourth, and the position would go to Dripps who then powered his way by Noble to take over third.
Chasteen was the next to challenge Noble, and this would be a great battle for quite a few laps. Dripps looked to be one of the fastest cars on the track, as he started to close in on Hughes for second, but Speiker looked like he was on a rail, being the model of consistency and driving the perfect race.
Johnny Bone and Tommy Myer were in a dogfight for sixth, closely following Chasteen and Noble. At times, a person could have thrown a blanket over the four cars of Myer, Bone, Chasteen, and Noble as there was some very close racing going on.
Dripps caught Jason Hughes and began to challenge for second, but the task of catching Speiker looked to be an insurmountable one, as he had pulled away to a straightaway advantage, and was having no trouble in lap traffic. Dripps completed the pass on Hughes, and Johnny Bone picked up the pace as well, passing Noble for fourth.
Bob Timm and Ron Schreiner also had a great battle going that lasted for quite a few laps, with the two drivers swapping position, and making up ground at the same time.
Kelly Shryock was also in the thick of things, mixing it up with Myer, Noble, and Chasteen. Noble started to fade as the laps wound down, and Chasteen seemed to get stronger towards the end, moving up to fourth, passing Bone in the closing laps.
After thirty laps without a caution, and some spectacular racing, Speiker was clearly the dominant one, and would earn a well-deserved victory, and a clean sweep, winning his heat race and the main event. Dripps finished a solid second, followed by Hughes, Chasteen, and Bone. This was also the first time a USMTS Modified series race went green to checkered without a caution.
Racing resumes at the Dodge County Speedway on Sunday, August 18th, with racing in all five divisions. For more information, please call (507) 775-7091 or visit our website at www.dodgecountyspeedway.com. See you at the races!!
Feature: Chris Speiker, Corey Dripps, Jason Hughes, Mike Chasteen, Johnny Bone, Kelly Shryock, Tommy Myer, Tim Donlinger, Bob Timm, Mike Sorenson
Heat 1: Chasteen, Timm, Mark Noble, Jim Arnold, Les Duellman
Heat 2: Hughes, Shryock, Donlinger, Todd Scharkey, Leroy Scharkey
Heat 3: Dripps, Ron Schreiner, Kenny Gaddis, Kurt Backers, Josh Omans
Heat 4: Speiker, Myer, Bone, Justin Boney, Dan Chapman
B-Feature 1: Duellman, Sorenson, Gaddis, Donlinger, Jason Sleigh
B-Feature 2: Arnold, Dave Siercks, Todd Scahrkey, Leroy Scharkey, Nathan Kilwine
Feature: Neil Eckhart, Kenny Wytaske, Carter Gerlach, Matt Stark, Jesse Frericks, Nick Kramer, Dane Schultz, Ron Skalicky, Dan Fagerlind, Chad Herman
Heat 1: Schultz, Eckhart, Kramer, Stark, Daryl Hainka
Heat 2: Gerlach, Fagerlind, Brian Hernandez, Kenny Wytaske, Frericks