AFCO Qualifier Results

Copp, Oreskovich, Inman Earn Race of Champions Qualifier Berths at ABC

by Nick Gima

               Ashland, WI, June 18 – Brandon Copp continued his winning ways, Nick Oreskovich returned to Victory Lane for the first time in two seasons, and Andrew Inman won his first-ever feature in Ashland.

With their wins at the ABC Raceway during Saturday night’s race program, presented by the Safari Tavern of Ashland, these three drivers gained invitations to compete in the prestigious Afco Shocks Race of Champions, to be held as part of the Speedway Motors WISSOTA 100 weekend in mid-September at the I-94 Speedway in Fergus Falls, MN.

Travis Hazelton, Dennis Groom and DeJay Jarecki also picked up feature wins during the 18-race program, which was completed by 10 pm on a cool, overcast evening.

Copp, of Brule, started the 20-lap Outlaw Wraps & Apparel WISSOTA Modified feature on the inside of row 2 behind Todd Gehl and Alex Van Natta, and he followed the father-and-son combination of Jeff and Cole Spacek through early traffic into fourth, as Van Natta rode the rim around the three-eighths-mile oval to hold the lead. The Spacek boys battled side-by-side for the early third of the race, allowing Van Natta to pull away to a margin of more than half a second.

Cole Spacek finally gained the edge on his dad on lap 7 and began chipping away at the leader’s cushion, while Jeff fell back into a fierce battle with Copp and Jody Bellefeuille. It took until lap 11 – when Canadian visitor Colin Chaschuk spun in turn 2 – for the Mods to see their first yellow flag in a feature in 2022 at Ashland – a total of 71 circuits. Tyler Luger got punted into the infield to quickly bring out the second caution stoppage of the season for the Mods, but over the final nine laps the race stayed under green.

Cole Spacek slipped inside on the high-flying Van Natta to take the lead on the latter restart, and Copp and Van Natta exchanged slide-jobs before Copp gained control of second on lap 13. From there Spacek and Copp – a pair of second-generation drivers whose dads spent many laps battling each other on Ashland’s red clay – raced side-by-side during the waning laps until Copp edged ahead while taking the white flag and hung on for a .380-second margin of victory.

Jeff Spacek, Bellefeuille and Van Natta competed the top five a fair distance back.

A three-car tangle spoiled the start of the 20-lap WISSOTA Super Stock feature, and after one green-flag lap was completed two more cars got together, as this race struggled to stay green until after its midpoint. Traffic was heavy behind early leader Matt Deragon, who held his car right to the lowest possible groove on the track and paced the first five laps.

The sixth-starting Oreskovich, the former four-time track champion from Mason, quickly picked his way to the front, grabbing second from Shawn McFadden on lap 2 just prior to Patrick Beeksma’s spin a circuit later. Oreskovich used the restart to set up outside on Deragon and, using high-side momentum, eventually swept around the leader within three laps.

Three successive stoppages on lap 8 kept the field close, but after that Oreskovich set sail as Deragon had his hands full fending off a determined Terran Spacek. Oreskovich led by 3.3 seconds at the checkers to pick up his first feature win at ABC since late June 2020, with Spacek finally clearing Deragon for second with two laps left. Steve Stuart battled heavy traffic throughout the run before gaining fourth late, and Beeksma finished a strong fifth.

Inman opted to make a rare appearance at Ashland after his primary Saturday-night option cancelled due to potentially wet weather, and his decision paid off in dramatic fashion. The Canyon, MN, pilot started the 20-lap WISSOTA Midwest Modified A-main on the pole and led until just beyond the race’s midpoint, then took advantage of late-race cautions to steal his historic win.

As the first six laps clicked off non-stop, there was plenty going on just behind Inman. Over successive laps, Duane Dunbar, Brady Uotinen and Marcus Dunbar all got by the high-groove-running James Vendela, who had started beside Inman but fell back quickly. After a lap 6 spin to bring out the race’s first yellow flag, and another on the ensuing restart, Marcus Dunbar slipped low on his dad Duane to take away second.

Within three laps the junior Dunbar was threatening Inman for the lead, and he made an inside pass stick on lap 12, although Inman, Uotinen and Duane Dunbar stayed in tight formation behind him. The running order stayed this way until a Kolby Reed spin with two laps left set up a green-white-checkered finish.

Uotinen made a strong move to drive past Inman and pull alongside Marcus Dunbar just after taking the white, but Tanner Gehl’s spin drew the yellow bunting, and officials deemed that the white-flag lap had not been completed by the field. So, on the second two-lap sprint to the finish, Inman kept Uotinen behind him and drew up alongside Dunbar. Coming off of turn 4 for the final time, Inman got just enough of a run off the banking to come home ahead of Dunbar at the stripe by 85 one-thousandths of a second – barely the thickness of his front bumper.

Uotinen, Dalton Mains and Duane Dunbar completed the close-knit top-five. Mains, who started tenth, received a “hard-charger” bonus complements of fellow Mid-Mod driver Tanner Hicks, whose car was significantly damaged during his roll-over here the previous weekend.

Hazelton, of Chippewa Falls, made the long haul north to overcome his struggles from last week’s WISSOTA Pure Stock outing here, leading every lap to dominate this night’s ten-lap main event. Starting outside on the front row, Hazelton outran polestarter Brandle Pupp, who was racing for the first time since 2019, and never looked back for his first career feature win here.

The red-hot Cory Jorgensen, who came into the weekend with nine feature wins over the first seven weeks of the season locally, struggled to get through the tight pack of cars debating second place, as Aaron Bernick got by Jorgensen just a couple of laps in to claim second, and Tyler Kachinske followed Bernick into third. However, Jorgensen kept close to those two and eventually worked inside to pass them both back on lap 6.

As the laps ran out Hazelton was too far gone – a full ten car-lengths out front as he crossed under the checkers. Behind runner-up Jorgensen were Kachinske, Bernick and Pupp, who was driving defending track champ RJ Holly’s car on this night.

Groom, the Raceway’s defending champ from Ashland, beat rookie Jacob Johnson to the first corner after the drop of the green flag in the ABC Six-Cylinder feature and withstood a couple of early threats from Dalton Truchon before pulling away to his second feature win of the season. Groom and Truchon hooked up to draw away from a great early battle for third between Austin Olby and Johnson, and as the green flag stayed out Groom benefitted by inching further and further away.

Groom’s lead was nearly a second-and-a-half when the fourth-running Olby looped his ride with 8 of the 15 laps remaining, putting Truchon right on Groom’s back bumper for the restart. But the leader was up to the challenge, running a smooth line and accelerating away to a final margin of victory of over two-and-a-quarter seconds. Mathew Rohlfing earned his second consecutive third-place paycheck, and Johnson just nipped Jake Nevala for fourth.

Jarecki, the defending Lightning Storm Graphics WISSOTA Hornets champ from Ashland, wasn’t the only one to hit the track for his feature on this night, as he had the previous week, but he still outran another former ABC Hornets champ in Paul George for the win.

Jarecki had to start behind polestarter George for the eight-lap program finale, but he quickly moved alongside and, just after a lap was completed, grabbed the lead. From there the only thing in doubt was the margin of victory – until Brandon Hummelmeier’s car completely stopped in the middle of the back straight with two laps left. Jarecki held serve for the final two laps for the 16th Hornets win of his career at ABC, with George a healthy distance back.

Next Saturday night, Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland will present its “Racing for a Reason” event, a fundraiser intended to benefit local charities. Fans entering the track through the main grandstand gate will be allowed free admission, there will be a number of fundraising activities taking place, and fans are welcome to donate goodwill offerings which will be designated directly to the charities.

On the track, the Raceway will host its popular annual “Meet the Drivers” session prior to the first green flag, and the Northern Renegades traditional sprint cars will make the first of its two visits of the season, creating a seven-division program. During the race night, fans can sign up for rides in the ABC Raceway’s new two-seater Modified, with the rides taking place following the features.

The grandstand gates and pits will open at 5 pm and hot laps will be run at 6:15, followed by the meet-and-greet session, with heat-race action scheduled for shortly after 7 pm. WSBZ, 93.3 FM, will air updates from 4:30-6 pm on Saturday, with simulcasts online via the station’s website, www.wbszfm.com.

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.

Results

WISSOTA Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: Brandon Copp, Brule; Cole Spacek, Phillips; Jeff Spacek, Phillips; Jody Bellefeuille, Carlton, MN; Alex Van Natta, Minocqua; Jake Hiatt, Mason; Rick Rivord, Superior; Jack Rivord, Superior; Paul Niznik, Medford; Tyler Luger, Oxford.

11-15: Al Uotinen, Superior; Hunter Anderson, Phillips; Colin Chaschuk, Neebing, ON; Todd Gehl, Solon Springs; Mike Klippenstein, Proctor, MN.

Heat 1: Gehl; Copp; C Spacek; R Rivord; Chaschuk; Uotinen; Anderson; Klippenstein.

Heat 2: Bellefeuille; Hiatt; Van Natta; J Spacek; Luger; J Rivord; Niznik.

WISSOTA Super Stocks

Feature: 1-10: Nick Oreskovich, Mason; Terran Spacek, Phillips; Matt Deragon, Ashland; Steve Stuart, Ashland; Patrick Beeksma, Ironwood, MI; Kyle Copp, Brule; Scott Lawrence, Superior; Shawn McFadden, Ashland; Jake Froemke, International Falls, MN; Randy Graham, Trego.

11-18: Don Livingston, Washburn; Myron Basina, Bayfield; Aaron Mashlan, Ashland; Rita Anderson, South Range; Jeff Eisner Jr, Merrill; Cory Casari, Montreal; John Garrity, Thunder Bay, ON; Andrew Mackey, Duluth, MN.

Heat 1: Stuart; Spacek; Oreskovich; Lawrence; Eisner; Livingston.

Heat 2: McFadden; Graham; Froemke; Anderson; Basina; Casari.

Heat 3: Beeksma; Deragon; Copp; Mackey; Mashlan; Garrity.

WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: Andrew Inman, Canyon, MN; Marcus Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; Brady Uotinen, Superior; Dalton Mains, Foxboro; Duane Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; Tanner Gehl, Solon Springs; Dylan Miller, Hibbing, MN; James Vendela, South Range; Austin Blom, Saginaw, MN; Ryan Barningham, Bayfield.

11-20: Jesse Aho, Twin Lakes, MI; Sean O’Brien, Manitowish Waters; Evan Checkalski, Duluth, MN; Paul Suzik, Ironwood, MI; Ross Fuhrman, Ashland; Jimmy Latvala, Solon Springs; Mitch Kieber, Ironwood, MI; Warren Bartelt, Medford; Jesse Polson, Superior; Kolby Reed, Thunder Bay, ON.

21: Diamond Bressette, Spooner.

Heat 1: Uotinen; Inman; D Dunbar; Mains; Blom; Bressette; Reed.

Heat 2: Vendela; Miller; Polson; Suzik; Kieber; Checkalski; Bartelt.

Heat 3: M Dunbar; Gehl; Barningham; Aho; O’Brien; Latvala; Fuhrman.

WISSOTA Pure Stocks

Feature: 1-6: Travis Hazelton, Chippewa Falls; Cory Jorgensen, Duluth, MN; Tyler Kachinske, Duluth, MN; Aaron Bernick, Duluth, MN; Brandle Pupp, Highbridge; Nicholas Hazelton, Chippewa Falls.

Heat: T Hazelton; Jorgensen; Bernick; Pupp; Kachinske; N Hazelton.

ABC Six-Cylinders

Feature: 1-9: Dennis Groom, Ashland; Dalton Truchon, Ashland; Mathew Rohlfing, Cable; Jacob Johnson, Cable; Jake Nevala, Ashland; Jakob Bond, Mason; Shane Basina, Bayfield; Austin Olby, Marengo; Julian Root, Ashland.

Heat 1: Basina; J Bond; Rohlfing; Johnson; Trenton Bond, Mason; Bubba Anderson, Trego.

Heat 2: Truchon; Nevala; Groom; Olby; Root.

WISSOTA Hornets

Feature: 1-3: DeJay Jarecki, Ashland; Paul George, Princeton, MN; Brandon Hummelmeier, Ashland.

Heat: Jarecki; George; Hummelmeier.

 

AFCO Race of Champions Qualifier June 18

Saturday night the Safari Bar of Ashland will present the ABC Raceway’s Afco Shocks Race of Champions qualifiers for its WISSOTA-sanctioned divisions. Each of those feature winners will earn an invitation to the Race of Champions event as part of the Speedway Motors WISSOTA 100 in Fergus Falls, MN, in mid-September. All six weekly divisions will be in action, with the grandstand gates and pits opening at 5 pm, hot laps taking place at 6:15, and the first green flag of the night scheduled to fly at 7 pm. WSBZ, 93.3 FM, will air updates from 4:30-6 pm on Saturday, with simulcasts online via the station’s website, www.wbszfm.com.

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.

Broking Scores Huge Advantage RV Mod Tour Win

Broking Scores Huge Advantage RV Mod Tour Win at ABC by Nick Gima

Ashland, WI, June 11 – Johnny Broking knew he had his work cut out for him when he picked the ‘9’ during the blind draw to determine the first nine starting spots of Saturday’s Advantage RV Mod Tour feature at the ABC Raceway.

“Time to put on a show?” he was asked after the draw. “I hope we can,” he replied sheepishly.

Boy, did he ever. Broking, of Grand Rapids, MN, clawed his way past a stellar field, weaved his way through backmarkers while fighting for positions, and overtook Mike Anderson in the late stages of the 40-lap Watertown Ford-Chrysler A-main to take home the $1,500 first-place check.

The win was the 2021 Mod Tour champion’s first-ever win at the historic northern Wisconsin speedplant, capping a show presented by the Bad River Lodge, Casino & Convention Center that initially was threatened by morning-long light showers. But the sun broke through by mid-afternoon, the track was fast, and 25 Outlaw Wraps & Apparel WISSOTA Modifieds arrived as the headline act for the six-division show.

The 40-lapper was interrupted only once – on lap 2, when Paul Niznik took a wild spin off the bottom of turn 4. Former national WISSOTA Late Model champion Zack Johnson, who had started outside on the front row, led polestarter Billy Kendall III and the rest of the pack back to the green and immediately opened up a three-quarter-second lead, while Brandon Copp and Mike Anderson worked their way around Kendall to second and third within the next four laps.

Johnson was able to add another half-second to his lead by lap 12 as Copp and Anderson battled each other for runner-up honors. Meanwhile, Broking had slipped by Ryan Gierke for fourth, although trailing the lead trio by some distance. On lap 14 Johnson had reached the tail-end of the field, but while he was able to maneuver through the slower traffic without much resistance, it did allow the now-second Anderson to cut into Johnson’s margin significantly.

Just a lap before the race’s midpoint, Anderson used an inside move on Johnson to edge into the lead, and within another half-dozen laps Copp had caught and passed Johnson’s fading car for second. Anderson seemed to be in complete control at this point, building up a cushion of nearly 1.5 seconds while deftly moving through the backmarkers. At the same time, Broking crept up behind Copp and, with 11 laps remaining, dove low to pass him for second.

The slower traffic began to work against Anderson as the laps wound down, allowing both Broking and Copp to reel in the leader. With five laps left Broking worked his way past Anderson with an outside move, and he pulled away over the final stretch for his second Mod Tour feature win in as many nights, after capturing the checkers in Superior the night before.

Anderson was 1.4 seconds back in second, closely followed by Copp, with Kendall recovering for fourth and Rick Rivord enjoying a strong fifth-place showing.

Steve Stuart of Ashland continued his strong start to the 2022 campaign with his second WISSOTA Super Stock feature win at ABC this season.

Stuart took advantage of a huge gap in the pack after a restart to slip through to take a lead he would work hard to keep.

“The seas kind of just parted in front of me,” Stuart said in Victory Lane as he described the winning pass.

Patrick Beeksma set a strong pace from his outside front-row starting spot early on, leading Shawn McFadden by as much as a second-and-a-half after just seven laps, before the first yellow flag was thrown for Chris Johnson’s stopped racer in turn 2. Aaron Mashlan’s spin on the restart stalled the show again, but on the ensuing green Beeksma’s ride pushed up the banking in the turn, allowing Stuart – who was running fifth at the time – to dive to the bottom to drive into the lead, followed through the gap by Matt Deragon and Nick Oreskovich. After Johnson spun again on lap 8, Oreskovich began a battle with Deragon that allowed Stuart to pull away.

Stuart’s level of comfort disappeared on lap 10 when polestarter Don Livingston spun his ride. Oreskovich, restarting second, stayed glued to Stuart’s back bumper the rest of the way, never allowing the leader more than a half-second of cushion over the final ten non-stop laps. But Stuart’s win was the 42nd of his career at Ashland and made a nice birthday gift for his oldest son. DJ Keeler overtook Deragon two laps from the finish for third, and Kyle Copp was not far back in fifth.

The WISSOTA Midwest Modified 20-lap feature was marred by multiple stoppages, the worst of which came after a complete restart brought about by Diamond Bressette being spun before taking the green. On that ensuing attempt, the close-knit racing caused a grinding pile-up of cars entering the front straightway at the end of lap 1, resulting in five cars either towed or pushed from the track, including that of Tanner Hicks, who ended up on his roof as he was collected in the incident.

After another three-car melee on that restart, an impressive Ryan Barningham led the field for a three-lap green-flag run before a Neil Dees loop. Then James Vendela’s ride, which was running in the top-ten, stalled on the restart.

It was at this point when Marcus Dunbar made his move. The 2020 ABC Mid-Mod champ from Marenisco, MI, who restarted second, dove inside on Barningham to take the lead away on lap 5 and, with the field clicking off ten non-stop laps, opened up an advantage of over four seconds before Mitch Kieber’s spin with five laps left.

During that long green-flag stint, Jesse Aho worked through heavy traffic and won a four-car battle to take over third place, and on lap 14 he finally reeled in and passed Barningham for second. The Kieber spin gave Aho a chance to challenge for his second straight win, but even one last restart with three laps to go after another Kieber spin didn’t help Aho’s cause, as Dunbar went on to his sixth career ABC win by eight-tenths of a second.

Barningham finished solidly in third, ahead of Paul Suzik and Jimmy Latvala.

Duluth, MN’s Cory Jorgensen added his eighth overall WISSOTA Pure Stock feature win of the season in Ashland on Saturday. Jorgensen took over at the point after a lap 1 restart and pulled away from the field for his 12th career feature win at ABC and second in as many shows here this season.

Visiting Travis Hazelton, who was very fast in his heat win earlier in the program, worked his way past Aaron Bernick after the restart and looked to be able to give Jorgensen a serious challenge for the win, but as the laps clicked off Hazelton gave the runner-up spot back to Bernick and eventually fell back to fifth, as visitors Tyler Kachinske and Kevin Bartelt also got by. At the checkers Jorgensen was well ahead of Bernick and the rest as he continued his torrid start to the ’22 season.

Bayfield’s Shane Basina withstood a quick succession of caution-flag delays and a persistent Dennis Groom to earn his first-ever feature win in the ABC Six-Cylinder headliner. Basina, in his sophomore season, picked up his first checkered flag of any kind earlier in the night by winning his heat as well.

The initial start was waived off for a “jump” by Jake Nevala, and following that was a jam-up of cars on the next green flag that caused Jakob Bond to slide into Dennis Groom, forcing Groom into the infield grass.

Basina took advantage of that restart to work outside the pack and into the lead, while Bubba Anderson’s slowing, smoking racer forced several drivers to check up, allowing Groom to scoot by into second.

Dalton Truchon’s spin while running fourth slowed the proceedings on lap 2, and after the restart Nevala used a nice inside move to displace Trenton Bond for third. But Basina was smooth in his line and hit his marks to near-perfection in building a .75-second lead before Bond spun on lap 5.

The last ten laps went without further delay, with Basina pacing and Groom in hot pursuit to the end. Basina’s winning margin was again up to three-quarters of a second by the time the checkered flag flew. Mathew Rohlfing had a solid run to third, using a nice move to get by Nevala late in the go, and Tyler Hudack marked his first night of the season with a fifth-place run.

During the Lightning Storm Graphics WISSOTA Hornets heat race, Derek Dunbar’s car spun and, with nowhere to go, RJ Holly’s car smacked into Dunbar’s nose-to-nose, resulting in terminal damage to both vehicles. Then, when it was time to come out for the Hornet feature, Brandon Hummelmeier’s car developed a gremlin. This left defending champ Dejay Jarecki of Ashland as the only driver able to race – so he took a single green-flag lap and captured the easiest feature win of his career.

Next Saturday night the Safari Bar of Ashland will present the ABC Raceway’s Afco Shocks Race of Champions qualifiers for its WISSOTA-sanctioned divisions. Each of those feature winners will earn an invitation to the Race of Champions event as part of the Speedway Motors WISSOTA 100 in Fergus Falls, MN, in mid-September. All six weekly divisions will be in action, with the grandstand gates and pits opening at 5 pm, hot laps taking place at 6:15, and the first green flag of the night scheduled to fly at 7 pm. WSBZ, 93.3 FM, will air updates from 4:30-6 pm on Saturday, with simulcasts online via the station’s website, www.wbszfm.com.

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.

Results

WISSOTA Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: Johnny Broking, Grand Rapids, MN; Mike Anderson, Jim Falls; Brandon Copp, Brule; Billy Kendall III, Walker, MN; Rick Rivord, Superior; Don Eischens, Richmond, MN; Cole Spacek, Phillips; Joseph Thomas, Glyndon, MN; Zach Johnson, Lowry, MN; Jeff Spacek, Phillips.

11-20: Parker Anderson, Phillips; Jake Hiatt, Mason; Pat Cook, Washburn; Bob Broking, Grand Rapids, MN; Bill Byholm, Glidden; Tim Thomas, West Fargo, ND; Paul Niznik, Medford; Hunter Anderson, Phillips; Tyler Luger, Oxford; Jack Rivord, Superior.

21-25: Duane Dale, Hibbing, MN; Corky Thomas, Glyndon, MN; Mike Klippenstein, Proctor, MN; Ryan Gierke, Villard, MN; Donnie Lofdahl, Duluth, MN.

Heat 1: J Broking; M Anderson; Johnson; J Spacek; Niznik; J Rivord; Cook; Byholm; Klippenstein.

Heat 2: Copp; Gierke; Kendall; C Spacek; J Thomas; B Broking; H Anderson; C Thomas.

Heat 3: Eischens; R Rivord; Hiatt; P Anderson; Dale; T Thomas; Lofdahl; Luger.

WISSOTA Super Stocks

Feature: 1-10: Steve Stuart, Ashland; Nick Oreskovich, Mason; DJ Keeler, Superior; Matt Deragon, Ashland; Patrick Beeksma, Ironwood, MI; Shawn McFadden, Ashland; Kyle Copp, Brule; Randy Graham, Trego; Myron Basina, Bayfield; Don Livingston, Washburn.

11-12: Aaron Mashlan, Ashland; Chris Johnson, Superior.

Heat 1: McFadden; Deragon; Beeksma; Livingston; Basina; Johnson.

Heat 2: Stuart; Oreskovich; Copp; Keeler; Graham; Mashlan.

WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: Marcus Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; Jesse Aho, Twin Lakes, MI; Ryan Barningham, Bayfield; Paul Suzik, Ironwood, MI; Jimmy Latvala, Solon Springs; James Vendela, South Range; David Simpson, Thunder Bay, ON; Warren Bartelt, Medford; Ross Fuhrman, Ashland; Neil Dees, Hurley.

11-17: Diamond Bressette, Spooner; Mitch Kieber, Ironwood, MI; Tanner Gehl, Solon Springs; Tyler Hudack, Ashland; Duane Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; Matt Jacobson, Bessemer, MI; Tanner Hicks, Ashland.

Heat 1: Suzik; Latvala; Barningham; Vendela; Bartelt; Bressette; Jacobson; Gehl; Kieber.

Heat 2: Aho; M Dunbar; Fuhrman; Simpson; D Dunbar; Hudack; Dees; Hicks.

WISSOTA Pure Stocks

Feature: 1-7: Cory Jorgensen, Duluth, MN; Aaron Bernick, Duluth, MN; Tyler Kachinske, Duluth, MN; Kevin Bartelt, Chippewa Falls; Travis Hazelton, Chippewa Falls; Steve Pohl, Manitowish Waters; RJ Holly, Marengo.

Heat: Hazelton; Jorgensen; Bernick; Holly; Kachinske; Bartelt; Pohl.

ABC Six-Cylinders

Feature: 1-10: Shane Basina, Bayfield; Dennis Groom, Ashland; Mathew Rohlfing, Cable; Jake Nevala, Ashland; Tyler Hudack, Ashland; Dalton Truchon, Ashland; Trenton Bond, Mason; Jakob Bond, Mason; Austin Olby, Marengo; Julian Root, Ashland.

11-12: Jacob Johnson, Cable; Bubba Anderson, Trego.

Heat 1: Basina; Anderson; Truchon; T Bond; Rohlfing; Hudack.

Heat 2: Nevala; Groom; J Bond; Olby; Root; Johnson.

WISSOTA Hornets

Feature: 1: DeJay Jarecki, Ashland.

Heat 1: Jarecki; Brandon Hummelmeier, Ashland; RJ Holly, Marengo; Derek Dunbar, Iron River.

 

Advantage RV Modified Series June 11th

The Bad River Lodge, Casino & Convention Center of Odanah will present the third leg of a four-race, four-night trek around the Northland for the Advantage RV Mod Tour when it stops at the ABC Raceway on Saturday, June 11. The show will feature many of the very best Modified racers in all of WISSOTA after lead-in stops in Grand Rapids, MN, on Thursday and Superior on Friday.

The Raceway’s other five divisions will also be in action. The Mod Tour will conclude this particular stretch of its schedule on Sunday, June 12, in Proctor, MN.

The grandstand gates and pits will open at 5 pm on Saturday, followed by hot laps at 6:15 and the first green flag of the night scheduled for 7 pm. WSBZ, 93.3 FM, will air updates from 4:30-6 pm on Saturday, with simulcasts online via the station’s website, www.wbszfm.com.

Opener Results

Rivord, Stuart, Aho, Jorgensen, Groom and House Score Wins in ABC Raceway Opener

by Nick Gima

               Ashland, WI, June 4 – It only took an extra three weeks, but it was worth the wait for drivers and fans at the ABC Raceway on Saturday, as Northern State Bank presented the award-winning track’s 58th Season Opener.

The fast-paced program, completed in just a shade over 2-1/2 hours on a smooth, wide track, saw Steve Stuart and Dennis Groom, both of Ashland, start successful defenses of their 2021 track titles with feature wins, while Jack Rivord of Superior; Jesse Aho of Twin Lakes, MI; Cory Jorgensen of Duluth, MN; and AJ House of Cloquet, MN, each claimed victories on an evening that started out warm and humid but finished under cool conditions with lightning flashing to the not-so-distant south.

Four of the six features ran non-stop, while the other two A-mains combined for just five total yellow flags.

Rivord, the 17-year-old who just moved up to the Outlaw Wraps & Apparel WISSOTA Modified division this year, continues to raise eyebrows in his first month-and-change in this class. He started the 20-lap headliner outside on the front row and chased six-time ABC Mod champ Al Uotinen for the first four laps. At that point Rivord worked his way around Uotinen and edged him at the flagstand by mere feet, then stuck to the higher line and gradually pulled away.

Farther back, Brandon Copp, who started eighth, worked both high and low to pick up positions over the first six laps, eventually getting by Jake Hiatt for third. With no caution-flag slowdowns to bunch the field, it took a few laps for Copp to reel in Uotinen, while Rivord kept building his advantage.

Rivord was 1.677 seconds ahead of Uotinen when the checkers flew over his landmark win and the seventh of his career here. Copp closed on Uotinen enough to be a threat at the end but settled for third ahead of Hiatt and another former track champ, Pat Cook.

Stuart drew from deep in the emotional well and came up strong with a dominant flag-to-flag win in the WISSOTA Super Stock feature. But in Victory Lane he couldn’t control the emotions any longer as he dedicated his win in memory of two good friends – former local racers Ryan Adamzak and Bill Muhlig – who both passed away unexpectedly during the off-season.

Stuart slipped low beneath the front-row-starting pair of Andrew Mackey and division rookie Randy Graham and set a torrid pace throughout the run, and there would be no yellow flags in this 20-lapper to help the rest of the field draw to Stuart’s rear bumper. Within five laps the seven-time ABC champ had built a 1.45-second buffer, and by the race’s mid-point his advantage had more than doubled.

Mackey tried to stay with the leader as long as he could, but he fell back to third once four-time ABC champ Nick Oreskovich closed up on him and, after several laps of close-quarters battling, overtook him with five circuits to go. With Stuart weaving deftly through slower traffic, Oreskovich actually trimmed the difference between himself and the leader down by a couple tenths of a second, but with Stuart holding an advantage of well over five seconds at that point it didn’t seem to matter.

Stuart scored the 41st feature win of his career here, with Oreskovich, Mackey, Kyle Copp and Matt Deragon trailing at a significant distance.

Aho’s fifth feature win at Ashland was much more hard-earned than Stuart’s, as four caution slowdowns kept some very tough customers nipping at his heels throughout the 20-lap WISSOTA Midwest Modified main event. He started on the outside of the front row and edged ahead of a very determined James Vendela, who stayed glued to Aho’s rear push-bar throughout the first five laps.

After a Diamond Bressette spin, Aho had to contend with both Vendela and an equally-fast Jake Smith, fresh off an impressive victory at Superior the night before. Smith and Vendela raced door-to-door behind Aho for several laps as the lead trio pulled away from Paul Suzik and Jimmy Latvala, before Mitch Kieber’s lap 9 spin slowed the pace. After that restart, former track champ Marcus Dunbar joined the fray, getting by Suzik for fourth.

The short green-flag run that followed allowed Aho to open up a bit of a gap on Vendela and Smith, who continued their heated dispute over second, but that gap disappeared again when Warren Bartelt’s car dropped its driveshaft on the backstraight on lap 13. Matt Jacobson’s spin briefly delayed the restart, but after that Aho’s car came to life, sprinting away from the field by a surprising 1.855 seconds ahead of Vendela.

Dunbar overtook Smith in the closing laps for third, and Suzik maintained fifth.

After the race, Aho dedicated his win to his father, who is facing a serious surgical procedure in the near future.

Only three cars started the WISSOTA Pure Stock feature, but Jorgensen, who was lined up behind Aaron Bernick and defending track champ RJ Holly to start, worked his way past both for his 11th career feature win here.

The first half of the race was very entertaining, with all three cars racing within feet of each other, each running a different line, and no one giving up the fight. However, on lap 5 of the eight scheduled, a brief bobble by Holly caused Bernick to check up, and that gave Jorgensen the break he needed to pull away.

Jorgensen took the checkers 1.905 seconds ahead of Holly, who edged Bernick for second.

Groom led every one of the 12 laps in the ABC Six-Cylinder feature after starting from the pole, but it was as hard-earned as Aho’s Mid-Mod win earlier. Groom came out of the first corner with Dalton Truchon on his back bumper, and Truchon gave Groom all the pressure he could possibly want throughout the run.

After Mathew Rohlfing’s spin on lap 2, Groom spent the rest of the run fending off Truchon, while a charging Jake Nevala got by Austin Olby for fourth and came up to challenge Jakob Bond for third, just behind the lead duo. The dogfight for the lead stayed intense until Groom and Truchon separated from the rest over the final few laps, and Groom held on by a .660-second margin for his seventh career win at ABC. Bond pulled away late away to take third as Nevala held off Shane Basina for fourth.

Groom, like Stuart, dedicated his win on this night to the memory of Adamzak and Muhlig in Victory Lane.

House, who won the Raceway’s Lightning Storm Graphics WISSOTA Hornet points title in 2020, returned to ABC’s Victory Lane for the first time since that title season with a runaway win after the division’s non-stop 10-lap feature.

House edged ahead of Holly from the pole as the top five runners stayed in tight formation. But once AJ’s cousin Kyle House swept around Holly to take over second, the field began to flair out and settled into what would eventually be its finishing order, although defending track champ DeJay Jarecki did have to battle with an ill-running car and a stubborn Brandon Hummelmeier for fourth throughout much of the run.

The win for AJ House was the sixth of his career at Ashland, by almost a straightaway on cousin Kyle. Holly, Jarecki and Hummelmeier completed a well-spaced top five.

The Bad River Lodge, Casino & Convention Center of Odanah will present the third leg of a four-race, four-night trek around the Northland for the Advantage RV Mod Tour when it stops at the ABC Raceway on Saturday, June 11. The show will feature many of the very best Modified racers in all of WISSOTA after lead-in stops in Grand Rapids, MN, on Thursday and Superior on Friday.

The Raceway’s other five divisions will also be in action. The Mod Tour will conclude this particular stretch of its schedule on Sunday, June 12, in Proctor, MN.

The grandstand gates and pits will open at 5 pm on Saturday, followed by hot laps at 6:15 and the first green flag of the night scheduled for 7 pm. WSBZ, 93.3 FM, will air updates from 4:30-6 pm on Saturday, with simulcasts online via the station’s website, www.wbszfm.com.

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.

Results

WISSOTA Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: Jack Rivord, Superior; Al Uotinen, Superior; Brandon Copp, Brule; Jake Hiatt, Mason; Pat Cook, Washburn; Tyler Luger, Oxford; Cole Spacek, Phillips; Alex Van Natta, Minocqua; Rick Rivord, Superior; Bill Byholm, Glidden.

11-12: Mike Klippenstein, Proctor, MN; Hunter Anderson, Phillips.

Heat 1: Cook; Uotinen; Copp; Hiatt; Anderson; Klippenstein.

Heat 2: Luger; R Rivord; Van Natta; J Rivord; Spacek; Byholm.

WISSOTA Super Stocks

Feature: 1-10: Steve Stuart, Ashland; Nick Oreskovich, Mason; Andrew Mackey, Duluth, MN; Kyle Copp, Brule; Matt Deragon, Ashland; Shawn McFadden, Ashland; Cory Casari, Montreal; Randy Graham, Trego; Patrick Beeksma, Ironwood, MI; Don Livingston, Washburn.

11-14: Rita Anderson, South Range; Dylan Leu, Medford; Myron Basina, Bayfield; Aaron Mashlan, Ashland.

Heat 1: Stuart; Oreskovich; Deragon; Casari; McFadden; Leu; Mashlan.

Heat 2: Copp; Mackey; Graham; Beeksma; Anderson; Livinston; Basina.

WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: Jesse Aho, Twin Lakes, MI; James Vendela, South Range; Marcus Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; Jake Smith, St Joseph, MN; Paul Suzik, Ironwood, MI; Dalton Mains, Foxboro; Tanner Gehl, Solon Springs; Tanner Hicks, Ashland; Jimmy Latvala, Solon Springs; Duane Dunbar, Marenisco, MI.

11-18: Ross Fuhrman, Ashland; Neil Dees, Hurley; Matt Jacobson, Bessemer, MI; Mitch Kieber, Ironwood, MI; Diamond Bressette, Spooner; Ryan Barningham, Bayfield; Sean O’Brien, Manitowish Waters; Warren Bartelt, Medford.

Heat 1: Gehl; D Dunbar; Mains; M Dunbar; Bartelt.

Heat 2: Smith; Latvala; Aho; Fuhrman; Kieber; Dees.

Heat 3: Suzik; Hicks; Vendela; Barningham; O’Brien; Jacobson.

WISSOTA Pure Stocks

Feature: 1-3: Cory Jorgensen, Duluth, MN; RJ Holly, Marengo; Aaron Bernick, Duluth, MN.

Heat: Jorgensen; Bernick; Holly; Steve Pohl, Manitowish Waters.

ABC Six-Cylinders

Feature: 1-10: Dennis Groom, Ashland; Dalton Truchon, Ashland; Jakob Bond, Mason; Jake Nevala, Ashland; Shane Basina, Bayfield; Austin Olby, Marengo; Mathew Rohlfing, Cable; Bubba Anderson, Trego; Trenton Bond, Mason; Jacob Johnson, Cable.

11: Julian Root, Ashland.

Heat 1: J Bond; Anderson; Basina; Johnson; Nevala; Root.

Heat 2: Groom; Truchon; Rohlfing; Olby; T Bond.

WISSOTA Hornets

Feature: 1-6: AJ House, Cloquet, MN; Kyle House, Wrenshall, MN; DeJay Jarecki, Ashland; RJ Holly, Marengo; Brandon Hummelmeier, Ashland; Derek Dunbar, Iron River.

Heat: AJ House; K House; Jarecki; Holly; Hummelmeier; Dunbar.

 

 

NSB Season Opener

the rescheduled season opener, to be presented by Northern State Bank, on Saturday, June 4. The Kids’ Meet the Drivers Night will be moved to a date later in June, to be announced soon.

Saturday’s opener will include the track’s regular weekly six-division offering of WISSOTA-sanctioned Mods, Super Stocks, Mid-Mods, Pure Stocks and Hornets and the track’s own ABC Six-Cylinders.

For 2022, driver entry fees for the Pure Stock and Hornet divisions during regular weekly shows will be waived, in an effort to encourage more racers in those divisions to compete at ABC. Also, the Raceway has developed a pre-determined points fund for all six weekly divisions, with payouts to be based on each qualifying driver’s percentage of event participation.

Pit gates are scheduled to open for Saturday’s race night at 4:30 pm, and the grandstand gates will open at 5. Hot laps will start at 6:15 pm, with the first green flag of the season set to fly at 7.

The ABC Raceway is located approximately 3.5 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13, then one mile west on Butterworth Road.  More information regarding the Raceway and its 2022 season schedule are available on the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com, and via its FaceBook page.

Farm Stock Special Cancelled

With the excessive amount of rain we received this morning, we regret to have to cancel tonight’s racing program. We are working on the possibility of rescheduling the Farm Stock Special. We’ll post as soon as we know. Please join us next week as we hopefully finally get our 2022 season underway with the Northern State Bank Season Opener! Meet the Driver’s Night will be postponed to a later night.

Season to start with May 28 special

UPDATE May 28th

RACES TONIGHT ARE CANCELED!

by Nick Gima

               Ashland, WI, May 21 – A week’s worth of cool, wet weather teamed up with a very unfavorable forecast to force the cancellation of this past Saturday night’s rescheduled 2022 season-opening event at the ABC Raceway.

The Board of Directors of the Ashland-Bayfield County Racing Association begrudgingly made the decision to cancel Friday evening, after over an inch-and-a-half of rain saturated the Chequamegon Bay area during the previous two days. More light, soaking rains arrived later Friday night, justifying the call, and temperatures Saturday never reached 50 degrees during the day, while overnight lows dipped into the upper 30s.

“Everyone on our Board and our staff want to race – we want to get this season going,” said Raceway Board president Eric Erickson shortly after the call was made to cancel. “But we have to make a decision that is good for our fans, smart for the drivers, and in the best business interests of the Raceway.

“The pit areas are soft, the grandstand parking is spongy. About the only thing that is ready, really, is the track itself.”

The season is now set to kick off on Saturday, May 28, with the Raceway’s first special event of the season, as White River Ag Products of Mason, with support from Deer Creek Farms, Windy Acres Farm, GDM Farms, Kully’s Truck Accessories, Lulich Implement and Tractor Central, presents the first-ever “Farm Stock Special.” An increased payout will be offered, including feature winner checks of $2,500 for the WISSOTA Modifieds, $1,800 for the WISSOTA Midwest Mods, and $1,200 for the WISSOTA Super Stocks.

The “Farm Stock Special” is just one of a large handful of special events dotting the 2022 season schedule, which will also provide a six-division offering during its regular Saturday-night programs, featuring the aforementioned Mods, Super Stocks and Midwest Mods, plus WISSOTA-sanctioned Pure Stocks and Hornets and the track’s own ABC Six-Cylinders.

Other special events on the docket include visits by the Advantage RV Mod Tour on June 11; the Northern Renegade traditional sprints on June 26 and August 13; the Structural Buildings WISSOTA Late Model Challenge Series for the second-annual “444 Memorial” on Thursday, July 21; the FastLane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Series on July 30; the first-ever “Little Car Classic” on August 6; and the 47th annual Red Clay Classic on September 30-October 1.

Many other staples of the ABC Raceway calendar, such as the kids’ bike race night, meet-the-drivers night, the Hall of Fame induction ceremonies, and more help fill what will be a very exciting schedule.

For 2022, driver entry fees for the Pure Stock and Hornet divisions during regular weekly shows in 2022 will be waived, in an effort to encourage more racers in those divisions to compete at ABC. Also, the Raceway has developed a set points fund for its six divisions, with payouts to be based on each qualifying driver’s percentage of event participation.

The ABC Raceway is located approximately 3.5 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13, then one mile west on Butterworth Road.  More information regarding the Raceway and its 2022 season schedule are available on the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com, and via its FaceBook page.

Awards Banquet 2021

The AmericInn has offered our banquet attendees a special room rate of $99.99 + tax for our banquet on January 22, 2022. The rooms are reserved under the ABC Banquet block, please reference that when you make your reservations!

46th Annual Red Clay Classic

Diemel, Sabraski, Spacek Capture Wins in Rain-Shortened Red Clay Classic at ABC Raceway

by Nick Gima

            Ashland, WI, October 2 – Despite a constant threat of rain, every scheduled race but one was completed during the 46th annual Red Clay Classic at the ABC Raceway, held over Friday and Saturday, October 1-2, in front of a near-capacity crowd.

            Only the WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature, which was slated as the final race of Saturday’s portion of the program, was lost to precipitation. The other 31 races held over the two-day program, presented by FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating, Tim’s Automotive Machine and Red’s Auto, were completed with minimal adjustments and resulted in one repeat champion and two first-time winners.

AJ Diemel of Elk Mound won the event’s WISSOTA Late Model feature for the second time, with the other victory coming in 2017. Shane Sabraski of Rice, MN, took a huge step in his quest for a WISSOTA Modifieds national championship with a nail-biter win. And Phillips’ Terran Spacek claimed his first-ever RCC win in a thrilling WISSOTA Super Stock main event.

With weather threatening, the ABC Raceway’s Board of Directors rearranged the Saturday schedule of events, moving the start time up by 1-1/2 hours and putting the Late Models at the head of the program. Diemel started from the outside of the front row and immediately beat polestarter and 2010 RCC champ Kyle Peterlin through the first turn.

Diemel led every one of the 40 laps, and early on his advantages were significant – including as much as 1.8 seconds after just eight laps. But once he began to deal with slower backmarkers, Pat Doar, who took second away from Peterlin on lap 5, and six-time RCC champ Jimmy Mars, who displaced Peterlin for third while navigating lapped traffic on lap 18, closed up most of that gap.

Doar thinned Diemel’s buffer down to three-quarters of a second by lap 9, but he, too, had to weave his way through the back of the field. And once Diemel got to an open gap in the running order, the leader re-established his dominant margin.

Rick Niemi had been putting up a strong top-five showing through much of the first 20 laps, but not long after taking fourth away from Peterlin, he in turn was shuffled back to fifth by Jimmy Mars’ son Sam.

With 18 laps remaining Chad Mahder spun to slow the proceedings and once again give Diemel some open race track to run. Diemel fended off a brief three-wide threat by Doar and Mars on the restart and again bolted to a dominant advantage. Diemel caught the tail end of the pack within eight short laps, sifting through the traffic to extend his lead over to nearly a full second.

With five laps remaining, heavy contact between Aaron Lillo and Ron Hanestad brough Lillo’s car to a grinding halt against the wall at the turn 1 pit exit, which brought about another caution flag. Over the closing laps Diemel, who leaned on what little berm there was at the top of the turns, bobbled ever so slightly in turn 3 with a couple laps remaining, but he overcame the error and held on for a winning margin of .868 seconds and a $5,700 payday – the largest check ever offered to a WISSOTA-sanctioned driver in the Raceway’s 57-year history.

Doar, Jimmy Mars and Sam Mars followed at the checkers in close formation, with Niemi completing an impressive fifth-place run. Travis Budisalovich, James Giossi, Derek Vesel, 2019 RCC champ Jesse Glenz, and Peterlin completed the top ten.

At the conclusion of Friday’s preliminary events, the top 16 vote-getters in a pre-weekend online poll of Late Model entrants were brought out for a “Fan’s Choice Dash for Cash,” presented by Red’s Auto of Ironwood, MI. The field was set by the number of votes, and Glenz, who received the most votes, drew a random number to determine an invert for the starting line-up.

Fortunately for Glenz he drew the “1” and started on the pole anyway, and he led all 16 non-stop laps for $800 win, followed by Diemel, Darrell Nelson, Doar and 2013 RCC winner Nick Anvelink.

Sabraski, who is in the heat of national championship battles in both the Mods and Super Stocks, started the 30-lap, $4,000-to-win Modified A-main on the outside of the second row, but his row mate – three-time RCC winner Ashley Anderson – found himself spun around with a damaged race car about 30 yards short of the starting line while coming for the green flag to start the race.

Jeremy Nelson, who started just in front of Sabraski, got a strong run on the restart and set a quick early pace, while Sabraski contended with polestarter Brandon Copp, Clayton Wagamon and two-time RCC Mod champ Darrell Nelson. Wagamon claimed third from Copp after the first two laps, and just a circuit later 2007 RCC Mod champ Jody Bellefeuille moved past Copp to take fourth, with Darrell Nelson climbing into fifth within a couple more laps.

Jeremy Nelson owned a strong 1.25-second lead on Sabraski at the one-quarter pole, but that lead began to shrink as the laps clicked off. By the time the race had reached its midway point, Sabraski had closed to within a couple of car-lengths, and on lap 17, while contending with slower traffic, he used a three-wide pass to take over the lead.

Further back, Bellefeuille was in the midst of a side-by-side duel with Wagamon for third, eventually taking over the spot with nine laps left. Bellefeuille then closed in on Jeremy Nelson, and those two battled just a few car-lengths behind the leader while weaving their way through the back of the field.

Sabraski had just broken into the clear after passing a slower car when, with two laps remaining, Cole Spacek and Mike Anderson, while racing for top-ten positions, tangled with Adam Ayotte in turn 3 to bring out the yellow flag and set up a green-white-checkered sprint. On the restart Sabraski was challenged closely by Bellefeuille to the inside and Nelson on his rear bumper, but the leader held on for a winning margin of .225 seconds – maybe a car-length at most – and his sixth career feature win in Ashland but first in the Red Clay Classic.

Bellefeuille was at Sabraski’s inside flank to finish second, and Jeremy Nelson was on Sabraski’s back bumper in third. Diemel, who started 12th, charged home late for fourth-place money, just ahead of his sixth-row starting mate, 2021 ABC Raceway point champ Cole Spacek.

Coming home in the second five were Darrell Nelson, Wagamon, Jimmy Mars, two-time RCC Midwest Mod winner Michael Truscott, and Dave Cain, who started last on the 25-car grid after accepting the defending champion’s provisional.

Terran Spacek’s father Randy has captured a number of feature wins over his 30-plus seasons of racing, including 36 at ABC to put him 12th on the track’s all-time feature win list. But the one win that had eluded Randy – the Red Clay Classic Super Stock feature – is the one that his son earned Saturday night.

The younger Spacek showed that he had the poise of his father throughout the 25-lap feature, as he led every lap from the pole despite persistent challenges by Kevin Burdick, the 2014 RCC Super Stock champ who is in the down-to-the-wire battle with Sabraski for the WISSOTA national title in this division.

Spacek’s chance for the win almost disappeared early in the race, as on lap 2, while battling with fellow front-row starter Brandon Duellman, contact between the two sent Spacek for a spin in front of the field. But Duellman was charged with the incident and penalized to the back of the 24-car field, putting Burdick in second for the restart.

Kevin Salin’s spin on lap 4 brought about another quick caution stop, during which multi-time track champ Scott Lawrence pulled into the pits to end his night. Over the next eight green-flag laps Spacek hugged the bottom groove of the smooth red-clay oval while Burdick and 2016 RCC winner Tommy Richards led a tight pack of contenders right behind him.

Other than Spacek at the front, the running order of the top-ten seemed to change with every lap. Burdick and Richards ran side-by-side exchanging second, while Shawn McFadden switched from the high groove to the low groove frequently to pull alongside Richards. Dave Flynn charged from his tenth-place starting spot to contest fourth with McFadden, but he would be tested by the high-flying Steve Stuart, the division’s 2021 ABC Raceway points champ, who seemed determined to sweep around the frontrunners using the outermost line on the track while slamming the turn 1 guardrail on nearly every lap.

The furious action was only paused once more, when Sam Fankhauser spun on lap 12. From there Spacek held firm to the low racing groove while Burdick worked a couple of lanes higher. The lead pair never seemed to be more than a car-length or two apart, while the chaos just behind them resumed. Over the final five laps Burdick made several strong efforts to pull alongside the leader, but Spacek answered every challenge.

Coming off of turn 4 for the final time, Burdick made one last desperation move, using his momentum off the top of the corner to dive low for the pass. But Spacek maintained his composure and his line and held on for a narrow .165-second victory, with Burdick pulling alongside his left-rear fender. Flynn’s strong run earned a third-place effort for the 2016 RCC Midwest Modified champ, just ahead of Richards and Stuart.

Sabraski, who started 19th, picked his way through the field to finish an impressive sixth, followed closely by McFadden, three-time and defending RCC Supers champ Curt Myers, DJ Keeler and Ron Mahder. Spacek didn’t have to deal with slower traffic during the run, as all 23 cars still running at the end of the race finished on the lead lap – a testament to the close, competitive racing throughout the field.

The Neighborly Bar of Ashland once again raised a huge purse for its “Bridesmaid’s Challenge,” offering over $1,200 to each feature’s second-place-finishing driver if they agreed to don a formal gown in Victory Lane after their race. While Doar declined, Bellefeuille and Burdick happily agreed to accept the dare, and each took home a check larger than their respective feature winners’ earnings.

The “Bridesmaid’s Challenge” purse was divided equally among all Midwest Modified feature starters, as was that feature’s scheduled purse, which was set at $1,500 to win and $200 to start.

Drivers setting the fastest single-lap times in each feature were presented a $100 bonus from Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland. Those lap times were set by Diemel in the Late Models (15.574 secs; 86.683 mph), Jeremy Nelson in the Mods (17.202; 78.479), and Terran Spacek in the Supers (18.243; 74.001).

Clint Larson Trucking offered a $125 bonus to each driver who advanced the furthest in their respective features from their original starting spots. These “hard-charger” bonuses were presented to Glenz in the Late Models (18th to ninth), Cain in the Mods (25th to tenth), and Sabraski in the Supers (19th to sixth).

In all, 176 racers registered to compete for a share of the over-$110,000 purse offered on a weekend that included unseasonably warm, humid conditions. Friday’s track was very smooth and very fast, as proven by Jimmy Mars completing his ten-lap Late Model heat race win in a time of just two minutes, 35 seconds, and Kyle Peterlin nearly matching that later during his Late Model heat win, with his ten laps taking just 2:40.

Saturday’s program began under similar conditions – warm and extremely humid – but the cloud cover moved in and a light shower watered the track immediately after the first semi-feature of the night, run by the Late Models. The wide, smooth track became very sticky-fast again, but the skies continued to threaten throughout the rest of the evening, and it wasn’t until the Midwest Mods entered the track for their feature to cap off the weekend’s festivities that the clouds finally let loose with a soaking shower that spoiled their chance to race.

During Friday’s pre-race ceremonies, the 13 US Military personnel who lost their lives during the recent attacks in Afghanistan were honored, with local retired and active Military personnel and members of the ABC Raceway staff presenting 13 folded US flags in Victory Lane in their memory. An additional flag was placed in honor of former Modified racer and Air Force Reservist Tanner Byholm, who was killed in an aircraft accident earlier this year.

In addition, two Late Models – Lillo’s number 9 and Doar’s number 11 – were displayed in Victory Lane in memory of the 20th anniversary of the terrorist attacks in New York City, Washington DC, and Pennsylvania on September 11, 2001.

The ABC Raceway has plans to host its annual banquet celebrating the 2021 racing season at the AmericInn of Ashland in January. Details of this event will be forthcoming.

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.

 Results

WISSOTA Late Models

Feature: 1-10: AJ Diemel, Elk Mound; Pat Doar, New Richmond; Jimmy Mars, Menomonie; Sam Mars, Menomonie; Rick Niemi, Eveleth, MN; Travis Budisalovich, Minneapolis, MN; James Giossi, Hudson; Derek Vesel, Hibbing, MN; Jesse Glenz, Chippewa Falls; Kyle Peterlin, Hibbing, MN.

11-20: Steve Laursen, Cumberland; Kevin Eder, Ashland; Chad Mahder, Bloomer; Darrell Nelson, Hermantown, MN; Gunner Frank, Montrose, IA; Jake Redetzke, Eau Claire; Harry Hanson, Eveleth, MN; Rick Hanestad, Boyceville; Buddy Hanestad, Boyceville; Clint Larson, Superior.

21-24: Aaron Lillo, Proctor, MN; Robbie Johnson, Wilson; Nick Anvelink, Bonduel; Tim McMann, Duluth, MN.

Heat 1: Doar; S Mars; Nelson; Laursen; Glenz; R Hanestad; Anvelink; Mike Bellefeuille, Duluth, MN.

Heat 2: Diemel; Budisalovich; Eder; Hanson; Johnson; James Kannegieser, Hayward; Tim Lillo, Superior.

Heat 3: J Mars; Niemi; Vesel; Redetzke; Larson; McMann; Paul Niznik, Medford; George Ledin Jr, Britt, MN.

Heat 4: Peterlin; Giossi; Frank; A Lillo; Mahder; B Hanestad; Jody Bellefeuille, Carlton, MN; TJ Adams, Hayward.

Semi-Feature: R Hanestad; B Hanestad; McMann; Anvelink; J Bellefeuille; M Bellefeuille; Kannegieser; Ledin; T Lillo; Niznik.

Fans’ Choice Dash: 1-10: Glenz; Diemel; Nelson; Doar; Anvelink; Budisalovich; Redetzke; J Mars; Eder; Mahder.

11-16: Giossi; Peterlin; Hanson; Vesel; S Mars; McMann.

WISSOTA Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: Shane Sabraski, Rice, MN; Jody Bellefeuille, Carlton, MN; Jeremy Nelson, Alexandria, MN; AJ Diemel, Elk Mound; Cole Spacek, Phillips; Darrell Nelson, Hermantown, MN; Clayton Wagamon, Ramsey, MN; Jimmy Mars, Menomonie; Michael Truscott, Chippewa Falls; Dave Cain, Corcoran, MN.

11-20: Steve Lavasseur, River Falls; Shane Halopka, Greenwood; Brandon Copp, Brule; Pat Cook, Washburn; Denny Cutsforth, Rice Lake; Matt Aukland, Glyndon, MN; Kelly Estey, Kelly Lake, MN; Rick Rivord, Superior; Shane Kisling, Butternut; Mark Hanson, Chippewa Falls.

21-25: Nick Koehler, Bloomer; Mike Anderson, Jim Falls; Adam Ayotte, St Paul, MN; Steve Hallquist, Fall Creek; Ashley Anderson, Elk Mound.

Heat 1: J. Nelson; D Nelson; Mars; Koehler; Alex Van Natta, Minocqua; Tyler Luger, Oxford; John Kallas, Hurley; Neil Balduc, Bessemer, MI; Daniel Bargender, Menomonie; Jeff Spacek, Phillips.

Heat 2: Sabraski; M Anderson; Truscott; Halopka; Paul Niznik, Medford; Pat Hoffman, Rice Lake; Aukland; Danny Thomas, Knapp; Jake Hiatt, Mason.

Heat 3: A Anderson; Bellefeuille; C Spacek; Kisling; Rivord; Lavasseur; Sam Fankhauser, Rice Lake; Brent Prochnow, Colfax; Zach Gibson, Chippewa Falls.

Heat 4: Copp; K Estey; Cook; Hanson; Cutsforth; Dan Kingsley, Superior; Skeeter Estey, Kelly Lake, MN; Cain; Cory Mahder, Elk Mound.

Heat 5: Wagamon; Hallquist; Diemel; Ayotte; Shaun Kreyer, Hayward; Donnie Lofdahl, Duluth, MN; Al Uotinen, Superior; Marcus Simonson, Luck; Brad Johnson, Wilson.

Semi-Feature 1: Aukland; Rivord; Kreyer; Kingsley; Lofdahl; Gibson; Prochnow; Hoffman; Bargender; Van Natta; Uotinen; Johnson; Balduc.

Semi-Feature 2: Cutsforth; Lavasseur; Niznik; Hiatt; Fankhauser; S Estey; Thomas; Luger; Cain; Kallas; J Spacek; Simonson; Mahder.

WISSOTA Super Stocks

Feature: 1-10: Terran Spacek, Phillips; Kevin Burdick, Proctor, MN; Dave Flynn, Superior; Tommy Richards, Mondovi; Steve Stuart, Ashland; Shane Sabraski, Rice, MN; Shawn McFadden, Ashland; Curt Myers, Cameron; DJ Keeler, Superior; Ron Mahder, Elk Mound.

11-20: Andrew Mackey, Duluth, MN; Patrick Beeksma, Ironwood, MI; Willie Johnsen Jr, Superior; Jim Campbell, Two Harbors, MN; Joey Jensen, Forest Lake, MN; Andy Grymala, Superior; Brandon Duellman, Winona, MN; Eric Olson, Ladysmith; Nick Oreskovich, Mason; Keith Kern, Superior.

21-24: Sam Fankhauser, Rice Lake; Darin Meierotto, Superior; Kevin Salin, Iron, MN; Scott Lawrence, Superior.

Heat 1: Richards; Oreskovich; Grymala; Mackey; Meierotto; Don Muzzy, Ironwood, MI; Aaron Mashlan, Ashland; Don Livingston, Washburn.

Heat 2: Myers; Fankhauser; Campbell; Beeksma; Lawrence; Olson; Chad Johnson, Colfax; Tristan LaBarge, Kelly Lake, MN; Shane Basina, Bayfield.

Heat 3: Duellman; Flynn; Stuart; Kern; Leslie Leu, Medford; Justin Weinberger, Butternut; Tucker Quinn, Ladysmith; Wayne Dean, Strum; Matthew Hammitt, Cloquet, MN.

Heat 4: Spacek; McFadden; Keeler; Sabraski; Cory Casari, Montreal; Kyle Copp, Brule; Jeff Eisner Jr, Merrill; Mike Sirois, Duluth, MN; Jensen.

Heat 5: Burdick; Mahder; Johnsen; Salin; Matt Deragon, Ashland; Rich Bishop, New Richmond; Brian Carl, Duluth, MN; Jason Quarders, Prairie Farm; Scott Geiger, Dorchester.

Semi-Feature 1: Meierotto; Olson; Copp; Leu; Quinn; Josh Schmidt, Elk River, MN; Sirois; LaBarge; Deragon; Basina; Mashlan; Hammitt.

Semi-Feature 2: Lawrence; Jensen; Bishop; Weinberger; Dean; Eisner; Geiger; Quarders; Muzzy; Johnson; Livingston; Casari.

WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds

Feature: rained out.

Heat 1: Brandon Jensen, Ellsworth; Ryan Savoy, Superior; Paul Suzik, Ironwood, MI; Tyler Kintner, Hibbing, MN; James Vendela, South Range; Evan Checkalski, Proctor, MN; Michael McKay, Sparta; Nick Ayotte, St Paul, MN; CJ Wagner, Rice Lake.

Heat 2: Brady Uotinen, Superior; Scott Splittstoesser, Cottage Grove, MN; Marcus Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; Jimmy Latvala, Solon Springs; Paul Niznik, Medford; Austin Blom, Saginaw, MN; Neil Dees, Hurley; Bryan Lund, Ashland; Dalton Mains, Foxboro; McLean Andrews, Duluth, MN; Tanner Gehl, Solon Springs.

Heat 3: Joey Jensen, Forest Lake, MN; Jesse Aho, Toivola, MI; Tanner Hicks, Ashland; Ryan Barningham, Bayfield; Zach Slayton, Springbrook; Tyler Hudack, Ashland; Ross Fuhrman, Ashland; Chris Bretting, Washburn; Diamond Bressette, Spooner.

Heat 4: Andrew Inman, Canyon, MN; Travis Anderson, Colfax; Kennedy Swan, Chippewa Falls; Mike Widmann, Marshfield; Cody Carlson, Superior; George Truscott, Greenland, MI; Les Duellman, Winona, MN; Mitch Kieber, Ironwood, MI; Derrick Reed, Emerald; Cole Mueller, Chippewa Falls.

Heat 5: Simon Wahlstrom, Mikana; Tommy Richards, Mondovi; Jesse Polson, Superior; Darrel Hazelton, Chippewa Falls; Michael Truscott, Chippewa Falls; Duane Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; Justin Bassa, Cotton, MN; John Kallas, Hurley; Matt Jacobson, Bessemer, MI; Kenny Rogers, Unity.

Semi-Feature 1: Carlson; Fuhrman; D Dunbar; Vendela; Kallas; Blom; Casey Kintner, Mountain Iron, MN; Mueller; Jacobson.

Semi-Feature 2: Niznik; Duellman; Mains; M Truscott; McKay; Wagner; Hudack; Andrews; Bretting.

Semi-Feature 3: Checkalski; Bassa; Bressette; Rogers; Kieber; Dees; Slayton; Anthony Gallian, Superior. 

 

 

Championship Saturday August 28th

Saturday, August 28, will be the final regular-season race night at ABC. “Mountain Dew Championship Saturday Night” will be presented by North Star Beverage of Hurley and will culminate in the crowning of the 2021 track champions in all six weekly divisions.

Regular grandstand admission ticket prices will apply, and advance tickets and pit passes are available via the My Race Pass website and mobile app. The grandstands will open at 5 pm, hot laps start at 6:15, and the first green flag of the night is scheduled for 7 pm. WSBZ, 93.3 FM, will air updates from 4:30-6 pm on Saturday, with simulcasts aired online via the station’s website, www.wbszfm.com.

Fans are reminded that tickets and reserved seating are still available for the 46th annual Red Clay Classic, to be held October 1-2. Ticket information is available by calling (715) 682-2672 Monday through Friday (evenings only) or by sending an e-mail to tickets@abcraceway.com. For info on reserved pit sites, racers can call (715) 746-2390 (evenings) or e-mail to tickets@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. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990

August 21st Results

 

VanGuilder, Jarecki Capture ABC Specials

by Nick Gima

            Ashland, WI, August 21 – Two special features helped draw the season’s largest car count to date to the ABC Raceway on Saturday night, and one of those features produced a first-time winner here.

Of the 106 racers registered for the seven-division offering presented by the Ashland-Bayfield County Sportsmen’s Club, twenty-one WISSOTA Street Stocks came out for the Anderson Auto Body “Battle by the Bay,” while another 15 competed in the Safari Tavern “Hornet’s Nest 20.” Both features – along with much of the remainder of the night’s action – provided great racing and more than a little drama on a cool, breezy late August evening in northern Wisconsin.

Hunter VanGuilder of Rice Lake was the first-time winner in the second-annual running of the “Battle” for the Street Stocks, as he came from the third row, took the lead early, and held off some serious challenges for the historic win. VanGuilder moved up quickly to join polestarter Kyle Genett and Dustin Doughty in a three-car dogfight for the early lead that separated itself from the next tightly-grouped pack of cars, led by outside front-row starter Colten Klueckman and former ABC Pure Stock champ Andrew Hanson.

Three laps into the 20-lap main event, a huge pile-up collected several cars, including Klueckman, who looked to be a contender early. On the ensuing restart VanGuilder took a look to the inside on Genett, and after a couple of laps VanGuilder took the lead, with Hanson taking third from Doughty and defending event champ Parker Anderson moving to fifth.

Jay Kesan, who was outside of the top-ten on the lap 3 restart, had just moved by William Fisher for sixth on lap 8, but a circuit later his car broke loose and spun into the infield in turn 4, ending his potentially great charge to the front. Moments later, Genett spun in the same spot to bring out the race’s only other caution flag, and he pulled his ride into the pits.

After VanGuilder led the field back to green, two drivers that were enjoying incredible runs – 19th-starting Ty Agen and 14th-starting Jordan Kurtti – sped around Fisher to take fifth and sixth, respectively. In the closing laps each got past Doughty for fourth and fifth as Doughty nursed his car to the finish with broken rear-gears.

VanGuilder protected the bottom for the remainder of the run, with first Hanson and then Anderson glued to his trunklid, as he held on for his first-ever feature win at ABC, worth $1,000 of the over $6,000 total purse. Anderson, WISSOTA’s national points leader in the Streeters coming into the weekend, was less than a half-second behind, while Hanson wasn’t much further back in third. VanGuilder’s fastest lap of the event was run in 18.664 seconds, for an average speed of 72.332 mph.

Much of the drama came in the Hornets’ special feature, where track points leader DeJay Jarecki of Ashland had a nine-race win streak on the line, and there were plenty of strong contenders in the house capable of ending that streak.

One of those contenders was Shane Basina, who has been driving Jarecki’s spare car for much of the season. Basina started the 20-lap evening finale by quickly overtaking polestarter Brandon Hummelmeier to set the early pace, while Jarecki, who started inside on row 4, needed a couple of laps to get past Hummelmeier for second. Basina gave Jarecki a true test up front until lap 4, when the caution flag waived for Gavyn Moncher’s stalled ride.

On the subsequent restart, visitor Mark Schoone, who was fifth, sped past Hummelmeier and Derek Dunbar and joined the fight for the lead. On lap 7 Schoone took an inside line to get by both teammates and began to pull away.

Visiting Sammy Tingley’s spin set up a five-lap shoot-out, and in the first turn after the restart Basina got caught up in the heavy traffic challenging for the lead and slipped back, giving up second to Jarecki. The pace was stopped once more for Basina’s get-together with Dan Moncher on lap 16, but Schoone held off Jarecki’s threats from there to reach the checkers first.

The finish wasn’t decided, however, until a post-race inspection revealed that Schoone’s wheels were not considered technically acceptable, giving Jarecki his tenth straight win here and essentially sewing up his first-ever points title with one race night remaining. Dunbar, Hummelmeier, Dan Moncher and Reid Johnson also moved up to complete the top five, and Jarecki was also crowned as the champ of the two-race mini-series after combining his win here with his fourth-place finish in Superior the night before.

Six-time ABC Raceway WISSOTA Modified champ Al Uotinen of Superior picked up his 27th career feature win on Saturday – his first in a year and only his second here since 2014 – by winning a thrilling battle with one of the top young drivers in the region in Brandon Copp.

After spins by Mike Klippenstein and Tyler Luger negated the initial attempts to start, Uotinen sped around polestarter Shane Kisling for the early lead, while Copp, who came from row 4, quickly used the outermost line on the track to sweep by several cars and take third. Copp got by Kisling for second within a couple more laps and then reeled in Uotinen, setting up an epic side-by-side battle as the lead pair pulled away from the rest of the field.

Copp eventually edged ahead by mid-race, relying on the higher line to provide momentum, but over time the low groove became the faster route, and Uotinen chipped away at what little deficit there was. Eventually Uotinen regained the lead, and over the final five laps he slowly drew away to a 1.1-second margin of victory.

Copp, whose father Don has had many epic battles of his own with Uotinen in the past in scoring eight championships here, gained some valuable ground on divisional points leader Cole Spacek with his runner-up finish and Spacek’s 11th-place run, while Paul Niznik ended up solidly in third, well back of the leaders but safely ahead of Jeff Spacek, who nipped Neil Balduc at the line for fourth.

Terran Spacek of Phillips came from deep in the field to score his second feature win of the year here in the WISSOTA Super Stocks, and his first since late May. Spacek worked his way up from the fourth row without the help of yellow-flag slowdowns, as the first 15 of the 20 laps went caution-free.

Front-row starters DJ Keeler and Scott Lawrence raced door-to-door for the first few circuits before Lawrence eventually nosed ahead on lap 3. Keeler didn’t make it easy on the 14-time track champ and often stuck a nose to the inside threatening to retake the lead, but Lawrence prevailed as the 13-car field stayed relatively close-knit.

By lap 7 Spacek became a factor by getting by Patrick Beeksma for third. On the next tour Keeler finally nosed past Lawrence for the lead, with Spacek following on the low groove to second, and a lap later Spacek changed lanes to work his way around Keeler. From there Spacek charged away to a significant 2.7-second lead over the next six laps.

A Nick Oreskovich-Steve Stuart get-together with five laps left brought the field back to Spacek’s rear bumper, but the leader re-established his advantage in short order, eventually winning in impressive fashion by 2.342 seconds. Beeksma finished a strong run by edging Keeler at the stripe for second, and second-in-points Shawn McFadden claimed fourth ahead of Lawrence over the final laps, although Stuart’s ninth-place finish should be enough for him to nail down his seventh career track title in a fourth different division.

Caution flags flew early and often in the WISSOTA Midwest Modified A-main, but they didn’t stop Jack Rivord of Superior from claiming his second feature win of the season here. The teenager, who withstood challenges from several different drivers, remained as calm and steady as any veteran.

After beating fellow front-row starter Marcus Dunbar to the early advantage, the yellow lights blinked on for Sean O’Brien’s stalled ride on lap 2, a Diamond Bressette spin on lap 3, and a multi-car mess on the very next restart, all of which kept the traffic tight. Rivord was able to draw away from Dunbar while the lights stayed green, but Bryan Lund’s racer broke just past the race’s mid-point to slow the pace once more.

Divisional points leader Tyler Vernon, who had spent the first half of the 20-lapper mired in mid-pack traffic, broke free with a split-the-difference pass of Duane Dunbar and Niznik just after the last restart to take fourth. Jesse Aho took advantage of the restart as well, working his way by Marcus Dunbar on the low side to steal second, and Aho pulled alongside Rivord a couple of times over the final laps but just couldn’t complete the pass, as Rivord held on for a half-second win. Behind Marcus Dunbar, Vernon’s fourth-place run should give him enough for his second points crown here, while Dalton Mains came through the pack late for an impressive fifth-place run.

Cory Jorgensen of Duluth, MN, continued his recent hot streak with his sixth WISSOTA Pure Stock feature win at ABC this year and his fifth in his last six race nights over the past two weeks. In the 12-lap non-stop A-main Jorgensen, who started outside on row 2, joined front-row starters Nate Rose and Steve Pohl for a great battle for the lead before prevailing on lap 2.

Moving up to second within a lap was visiting second-generation racer Mitchell Kesan, and the impressive youngster stayed right on the back bumper of Jorgensen’s car, taking occasional peeks to either side while looking for an opening to get by. On lap 5 they bumped coming through turn 2, upsetting both cars, but each driver recovered to maintain their running order, well ahead of the battle for third between Rose and division points leader RJ Holly.

Jorgensen and Kesan stayed nose-to-tail right through to the checkered flag, while Rose held on to third ahead of Holly. Pohl claimed fifth, ahead of second-in-points Aaron Bernick, which helped give Holly a little bit of breathing room with a 20-point lead heading into the final night of the regular season.

The ABC Six-Cylinders have provided the most entertaining of the points battles coming down to the wire, as six drivers were within 80 points of leader Dennis Groom of Ashland coming into this past weekend. Groom, however, made things a little tougher on the others as he took advantage of an opening in the field and held on for his second feature win of the season.

After rookie Austin Olby’s car stalled on the initial start, Bubba Anderson took the lead from polestarter Jakob Bond and retained it through a lap 2 restart for Bond’s spin. Anderson and Mathew Rohlfing then raced side-by-side for a couple of laps until the two nudged each other, sending both up the banking in turn 4 and opening the door for Groom and others.

Groom pedaled hard to stay ahead of a charging Tiffany Hudack and Jake Nevala, with Hudack looking to make a pass on the outside late in the run. Nevala stayed low to slip past Hudack and drew up right behind Groom on lap 10 of the 12 scheduled, and on the next corner Hudack dropped low and bumped an infield marker tire, causing her to turn into the infield and fall back.

Groom held off Nevala’s determined challenges to win by just less than four-tenths of a second, but in a post-race inspection Nevala’s car was found to not meet specifications, giving Rohlfing a career-best second-place finish. Dalton Truchon, Olby and Hudack completed the top five, and Groom’s points lead grew to 37 over Hudack with one night remaining.

Other fast-lap times in the features were set by Uotinen in the Mods (17.884 secs; 75.486 mph), Terran Spacek in the Supers (18.337; 73.622), Rivord in Mid-Mods (18.117; 74.516), Mitchell Kesan in the Pure Stocks (19.869; 71.546), and Nevala in the Sixes (19.251; 70.126).

Steve Parsons, representing the Kim Parsons Memorial Trophy Tour, presented huge trophies to the top three finishers in each feature. Parsons uses the tour, w his late daughter, to encourage awareness of and participation in organ and tissue donations.

Next Saturday, August 28, will be the final regular-season race night at ABC. “Mountain Dew Championship Saturday Night” will be presented by North Star Beverage of Hurley and will culminate in the crowning of the 2021 track champions in all six weekly divisions.

Regular grandstand admission ticket prices will apply, and advance tickets and pit passes are available via the My Race Pass website and mobile app. The grandstands will open at 5 pm, hot laps start at 6:15, and the first green flag of the night is scheduled for 7 pm. WSBZ, 93.3 FM, will air updates from 4:30-6 pm on Saturday, with simulcasts aired online via the station’s website, www.wbszfm.com.

Fans are reminded that tickets and reserved seating are still available for the 46th annual Red Clay Classic, to be held October 1-2. Ticket information is available by calling (715) 682-2672 Monday through Friday (evenings only) or by sending an e-mail to tickets@abcraceway.com. For info on reserved pit sites, racers can call (715) 746-2390 (evenings) or e-mail to tickets@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. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com.

 Results

WISSOTA Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: Al Uotinen, Superior; Brandon Copp, Brule; Paul Niznik, Medford; Jeff Spacek, Phillips; Neil Balduc, Bessemer, MI; Rick Rivord, Superior; Alex Van Natta, Minocqua; Tyler Luger, Oxford; Shane Kisling, Butternut; Jake Hiatt, Mason.

11-14: Cole Spacek, Phillips; Mike Klippenstein, Proctor, MN; Pat Cook, Washburn; Robby Bunkelman, Abbotsford.

Heat 1: Copp; Klippenstein; Balduc; Uotinen; Niznik; Hiatt; Rivord.

Heat 2: Kisling; C Spacek; J Spacek; Van Natta; Cook; Luger; Bunkelman.

WISSOTA Super Stocks

Feature: 1-10: Terran Spacek, Phillips; Patrick Beeksma, Ironwood, MI; DJ Keeler, Superior; Shawn McFadden, Ashland; Scott Lawrence, Superior; Cory Casari, Montreal; Nick Oreskovich, Mason; Matt Deragon, Ashland; Steve Stuart, Ashland; Justin Weinberger, Butternut.

11-13: Rita Anderson, South Range; Myron Basina, Bayfield; Aaron Mashlan, Ashland.

Heat 1: Lawrence; Beeksma; Stuart; Keeler; McFadden; Deragon; Mashlan.

Heat 2: Spacek; Oreskovich; Weinberger; Anderson; Basina; Casari.

WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: Jack Rivord, Superior; Jesse Aho, Toivola, MI; Marcus Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; Tyler Vernon, Mason; Dalton Mains, Foxboro; Paul Niznik, Medford; Ross Fuhrman, Ashland; Paul Suzik, Ironwood, MI; Duane Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; Tanner Hicks, Ashland.

11-20: Ryan Barningham, Bayfield; James Vendela, South Range; Tyler Hudack, Ashland; Diamond Bressette, Spooner; Neil Dees, Hurley; Chris Bretting, Washburn; Hunter Tingley, Green Bay; Bryan Lund, Ashland; Mitch Kieber, Ironwood, MI; John Darwin, Iron River.

21-22: Sean O’Brien, Manitowish Waters; Tanner Gehl, Solon Springs.

Heat 1: Aho; Fuhrman; Barningham; Suzik; Hudack; Bretting; Dees; Tingley.

Heat 2: D Dunbar; M Dunbar; Hicks; Vendela; Darwin; Bressette; Gehl.

Heat 3: Rivord; Vernon; Niznik; Mains; O’Brien; Lund; Kieber.

WISSOTA Street Stocks

Feature: 1-10: Hunter VanGilder, Rice Lake; Parker Anderson, Phillips; Andrew Hanson, Iron River; Ty Agen, Chippewa Falls; Jordan Kurtti, Bruce Crossing, MI; William Fisher, Shell Lake; Dustin Doughty, Oakdale, MN; Travis Hazelton, Chippewa Falls; Ron Hanestad, Glenwood City; Brandon Hakala, Tomahawk.

11-20: Daniel Boissy, Trego; Michael Brown, Tomahawk; Jeff Nowak, Wausau; David Blackberg, Eagle River; Ethan Hommerding, Merrill; Michael Tuma, Weyerhaeuser; Kyle Genett, Auburndale; Jay Kesan, Weyerhaeuser; Colten Klueckman, Wausau; Adam Soltis, Ladysmith.

Heat 1: Anderson; Hanson; VanGilder; Soltis; Kesan; Nowak.

Heat 2: Genett; Hakala; Brown; Hanestad; Kurtti; Tuma.

Heat 3: Doughty; Klueckman; Fisher; Hazelton; Hommerding; Blackberg.

WISSOTA Pure Stocks

Feature: 1-8: Cory Jorgensen, Duluth, MN; Mitchell Kesan, Medford; Nate Rose, Duluth, MN; RJ Holly, Marengo; Aaron Bernick, Duluth, MN; Steve Pohl, Manitowish Waters; Zene Anderson, Superior; David Pederson, Duluth, MN.

Heat: Jorgensen; Kesan; Holly; Rose; Pohl; Bernick; Anderson; Pederson.

ABC Six-Cylinders

Feature: 1-10: Dennis Groom, Ashland; Mathew Rohlfing, Cable; Dalton Truchon, Ashland; Austin Olby, Marengo; Tiffany Hudack, Ashland; Jakob Bond, Mason; Shane Basina, Bayfield; Julian Root, Ashland; Adam Traaholt, Ashland; Jacob Johnson, Cable.

11: Bubba Anderson, Trego.

Heat 1: Hudack; Rohlfing; Groom; Basina; Traaholt; Root; Johnson.

Heat 2: Anderson; Truchon; J Bond; Trenton Bond, Mason; Olby; Jake Nevala, Ashland.

WISSOTA Hornets

Feature: 1-10: DeJay Jarecki, Ashland; Derek Dunbar, Iron River; Brandon Hummelmeier, Ashland; Dan Moncher, Saxon; Reid Johnson, Duluth, MN; Shane Basina, Bayfield; Kristy Marken, Duluth, MN; Paul George, Princeton, MN; Alex Reilly, Belleville; Sammy Tingley, Lake Tomahawk.

11-14: Deacon Pratt, Aurora, MN; Gavyn Moncher, Saxon; Jase Wiarda, Proctor, MN; Jacob Aarhus, Canby, MN

Heat 1: Mark Schoone, Gleason; Dunbar; Johnson; Hummelmeier; Marken; Reilly; Tingley; Jase Wiarda, Proctor, MN.

Heat 2: Jarecki; Basina; Aarhus; George; Pratt; D Moncher.

Hornets Nest 25 & Battle by the Bay Street Stock race Aug 21st

Streets, Hornets Running for Bonus Purses at ABC Raceway on Saturday

by Nick Gima

                Ashland, WI, August 17 – After wet weather washed out a visit by the WISSOTA Street Stocks two Saturdays ago, the ABC Raceway is going to welcome them back again.

                The rescheduled second annual “Battle by the Bay,” presented by Anderson Body Shop of Phillips, will be held on August 21, as part of a program that will also spotlight the track’s entry-level division with the Safari Bar “Hornet’s Nest 25” special for WISSOTA Hornets. Both divisions will race for enhanced purses – the Street Stocks will run for at least $1,000 to win and $150 to start in their only appearance here this season, while the Hornets will race for at least $200 to win.

                Fan and business contributions will be welcome to help boost the purse offerings for both features.

                The presenting sponsor for the overall night of action is the Ashland-Bayfield County Sportsmen’s Club, which will be selling its fundraiser raffle tickets right up until intermission at the track on Saturday, at which time the raffle drawing will be held in front of the fans in the stands.

                Current WISSOTA national points leader Parker Anderson of Phillips claimed his first career feature win in Ashland at last year’s inaugural “Battle” and took home a $1,200 winner’s check – a track-record for Street Stocks. It was the division’s first appearance on the historic northern Wisconsin red-clay oval since the end of the 2009 season.

Other top Street Stock competitors that could make the trip to Ashland for Saturday’s show include Parker’s brother Hunter Anderson of Phillips; Oakdale, MN’s Dustin Doughty; Cole Richards of Mondovi; Medford’s Cody Kummer; and former ABC Pure Stock champ Andrew Hanson of Iron River.

                The “Hornet’s Nest 25” will be the second of two specials for the entry-level division on back-to-back nights. The class, which consists of four-cylinder, front-wheel-drive subcompact cars, will also take part in the “Badger State Hornet Nationals” on Friday, August 20, at the Gondik Law Speedway in Superior.

                Ashland’s DeJay Jarecki could be the man to beat at both tracks – he has five feature wins in Superior and an amazing streak of nine straight A-main wins in Ashland. He currently sits fourth in WISSOTA’s national Hornets standings.

                Other top contenders who may be chasing the big Hornet purses this weekend include Tyler Schramm of Two Harbors, MN; Superior’s Carson Gotelaere; Kristy Marken of Duluth, MN; and Chaston Finckbone of Grand Rapids, MN.

                All six of the Raceway’s divisions will be in action this Saturday, with only two nights left to battle for the 2021 regular-season championships. Cole Spacek of Phillips saw Brule’s Brandon Copp cut into his points lead in the WISSOTA Modifieds after Copp’s feature win last Saturday, but Ashland’s Steve Stuart extended his lead in the WISSOTA Super Stock standings over Shawn McFadden of Ashland with his fifth feature win of the summer here.

                Tyler Vernon of Ashland added to his edge in the WISSOTA Midwest Modified rankings last weekend ahead of Jack Rivord of Superior, while RJ Holly of Marengo is still just barely ahead of Aaron Bernick of Duluth, MN, in the WISSOTA Pure Stocks.

Jarecki has dominated the Hornets, although Iron River’s Derek Dunbar continues to chase him, but things have tightened up in the ABC Six-Cylinders, where Ashland’s Dennis Groom has Tiffany Hudack of Ashland and four other drivers within 80 points of his lead.

                There will be no increase in adult grandstand admission ticket prices for this seven-division special, and advance tickets and pit passes are available via the My Race Pass website and mobile app. The grandstands will open at 5 pm, hot laps start at 6:15, and the first green flag of the night is scheduled for 7 pm. WSBZ, 93.3 FM, will air updates from 4:30-6 pm on Saturday, with simulcasts aired online via the station’s website, www.wbszfm.com. 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,

August 14th Results

Solem Outruns Renegade Sprints, Young Uotinen Scores First Win at ABC

by Nick Gima

Ashland, WI, August 14 – Lance Solem of Duluth, MN, swapped positions with his fellow Northern Renegades competitors early and often during their 15-lap feature, then maintained the lead over the final ten laps to claim his first-ever sprint car win at the ABC Raceway on Saturday night.

The visit by the Traditional (non-winged) regional sprint series was the third and final one of the 2021 season at Ashland. The seven-division program, presented by WIMI, 99.7 FM, of Ironwood, MI, also produced repeat wins for Brandon Copp of Brule; Ashland drivers Steve Stuart and DeJay Jarecki; and Cory Jorgensen of Duluth; while Dalton Truchon of Ashland scored his first feature win of the season here and Superior’s Brady Uotinen collected his first-ever ABC Raceway feature win.

Solem, whose only other win on Ashland’s historic red-clay oval was in a WISSOTA Midwest Modified in August 2008, started the Renegade sprint A-main on the outside of row 3 and took advantage of an early bobble by polestarter Nick DaRonco to quickly move into the top four behind Chris Lewis, Ken Hron and Caley Emerson. After multiple shuffles in the running order over the first three laps, Hron’s spin brought about the race’s first slowdown, and three laps after that Solem – who restarted second – dove inside and took the lead from Lewis.

The position-swapping was frequent and furious throughout the run, as Paul Schultz displaced Lewis for second on lap 7, Emerson followed suit for third a lap later, and DaRonco took fourth away on the next circuit, just before Lewis spun to stop the race for the second and final time. Hron, who had slipped by DaRonco prior to the caution, moved past Emerson after the restart and challenged Schultz over the final five laps for second, allowing Solem to pull away to a full-second margin of victory. Schultz held off Hron for second, and Lewis recovered for fourth just ahead of Emerson.

Uotinen, the son of six-time ABC Raceway WISSOTA Modified track champion Al Uotinen, was fresh off of a dominant feature win at Superior the night before, and he capitalized on his outside-front-row starting spot in the Midwest Mod main event by blasting past polestarter Diamond Bressette at the drop of the green flag and leading every lap here for his landmark win.

Paul Niznik’s spin on lap 1 was the only slowdown of the 20-lapper, and Uotinen never flinched on the restart, speeding away to a two-second lead by lap 6. Tanner Hicks, who followed Uotinen into second at the initial start of the race, maintained a safe cushion on the battle for third during the early stages of the run, until Paul Suzik weaved his way from his eighth-place starting spot into that spot.

Uotinen had already begun putting slower cars a lap back by mid-race, but he continued to build on his lead. The slower traffic helped Suzik and divisional points leader Tyler Vernon catch Hicks, however, and the threesome thrilled the fans with their ongoing battle for runner-up honors among the backmarkers.

As Uotinen cruised to a nearly half-a-lap winning margin, Suzik – who had edged ahead of Hicks for second on the white-flag lap – suddenly slowed while coming out of turn 4 for the final time. Hicks had nowhere to go in the heavy surrounding traffic and smacked into the back of Suzik’s car just yards short of the finish line, allowing Vernon to slip past. Once the dust settled, the finish was scored by the running order on the last completed lap, with Hicks replaced in second, Vernon delegated to third, Jesse Aho and Ross Fuhrman completing the top five, and Suzik relegated to the end of the running order as the cause of the incident.

Truchon’s win in the ABC Six-Cylinder feature was long overdue, as he had been running strong in recent weeks but did not have a heat or feature win to show for his efforts. The 19-year-old fifth-year driver started fourth on the 12-car grid but restarted second behind Shane Basina after a lap 1 caution stop for debris, and he used a quick inside move to grab the lead and didn’t look back.

The rest of the 12-lap run clicked off non-stop, with Truchon fending off persistent challenges from Dale Coddington. Truchon’s advantage was never more than a second on the three-time champ, but he maintained a smooth line and held on for a .409-second margin of victory.

Tiffany Hudack weaved her way through heavy traffic to snare third, ahead of Jake Nevala and Basina. With points leader Dennis Groom struggling to an eighth-place finish, the top six in the division’s championship standings are now within 80 points of each other with only two scheduled nights of racing remaining.

Copp’s third feature win of the season in the WISSOTA Modifieds had to be particularly satisfying, considering the significant repairs that had to be made after his car was gathered up in an altercation during the “big Mod” feature at Superior the night before. Both car and driver looked none the worse for wear while capturing the win here, however.

Copp followed polestarter Rick Rivord past Shane Kisling to run 1-2 in the early going of the 20-lapper. As Niznik was taking third from Kisling two laps later, Copp went outside on Rivord and claimed the lead, and on lap 3 Niznik dove low to get by Rivord for second. One circuit later divisional points leader Cole Spacek grabbed third, as Copp extended his edge to eight-tenths of a second.

That’s as far away as Copp would get from Niznik, who closed the gap to less than a car-length by mid-race. But Copp held on despite Niznik’s strong run – even as they worked their way past slower traffic late in the go – and Copp’s final winning margin was just shy of three-quarters of a second. Spacek didn’t lose much of his points lead with his third-place finish, while a strong run by Jake Hiatt netted him fourth-place money ahead of Pat Cook.

The early going of the 20-lap WISSOTA Super Stock feature was the messiest portion of that race, with each of the four yellow flags over the first four scored laps coming about due to multi-car incidents. But Stuart was out front on the last of those restarts and drove away to his fifth feature win of the year here to strengthen his points lead.

Just as the first lap was completed, several cars were crunched together on the front-straightaway for the first of the delays. Outside front-row starter Justin Weinberger led Stuart, Matt Deragon and the rest back to the green, but several cars never got that far as another jumble occurred coming out of turn 4 for the restart. Close-quarters, four-wide racing produced another four-car melee on lap 2, and after Stuart slipped by Weinberger for the lead on that restart, another four-car mess resulted in a penalty to the back of the pack for Deragon.

From there the race – and the rest of the evening’s program – went caution-free. Nick Oreskovich worked inside on Weinberger to take second, with Shawn McFadden repeating the move just behind him on Scott Lawrence for fourth. Oreskovich had notions of taking the lead from Stuart by lap 8, but within two more laps the leader had pushed his advantage to over a second, and it would only increase from there.

With six laps left McFadden took third away from Weinberger, and over the final laps he caught and passed Oreskovich for second, but Stuart’s 2.5-second lead at the checkers was more than enough. Oreskovich, Weinberger and a battered Cory Casari completed the top five.

Points leader RJ Holly started from the pole and grabbed the early lead of the ten-lap WISSOTA Pure Stock feature, but Jorgensen went by him before the first lap was completed and sped away to his division-leading fifth feature win of the season here to help tighten the championship battle in that class.

Jorgensen survived a wild feature at Superior the night before for a win, but he was under a lot less stress on this night, as once out in front he was never seriously challenged. A mid-race battle between Holly and Aaron Bernick did not last long, with Holly getting the better of Bernick for second. Zene Anderson drove to a distant fourth.

Jarecki took one more step toward his first career points championship with his ninth-straight WISSOTA Hornets feature win. Basina, once again driving Jarecki’s spare car, zipped around polestarter Derek Dunbar for the early lead, with Jarecki following to second right away.

On lap 3 Jarecki went low to pass Basina for the winning move, and although he never really pulled away by much Jarecki’s final margin of victory was about four car-lengths. Dunbar fell to last in the four-car running order early but recovered to get by Brandon Hummelmeier by mid-race for third.

The evening’s fastest timed feature laps were recorded by Lewis in the Renegade sprints (17.504 seconds; 77.125 mph); Niznik in the Modifieds (17.391; 77.626); Stuart in the Super Stocks (17.419; 77.502); Uotinen in the Mid-Mods (17.539; 76.971); and Coddington in the Sixes (18.692; 72.223). After the last yellow flag of the Super Stock feature, the balance of that race and the entirety of the Modified, Pure Stock and Hornet A-mains – the final 54 laps of the evening – ran non-stop, with the program ending shortly after 10 pm.

The ABC Raceway will offer another seven-divisions-for-the-price-of-six race program on Saturday, August 21, when the WISSOTA Street Stocks come to town for the rescheduled second annual “Battle by the Bay,” to be presented by Anderson Auto Body of Phillips. The Street Stocks will be running for a minimum of $1,000 to win in their feature.

In addition, the Hornets will be running for an enhanced purse as part of the Safari Bar “Hornet’s Nest 25,” and the entire race night will be presented by the Ashland-Bayfield County Sportsmen’s Club. At intermission during Saturday’s race program, the Club’s raffle drawing will be held. And there will be no increase in the grandstand admission ticket prices, with advance tickets and pit passes available via the My Race Pass website and mobile app.

The grandstands will open at 5 pm, hot laps start at 6:15, and the first green flag of the night is scheduled for 7 pm. WSBZ, 93.3 FM, will air updates from 4:30-6 pm on Saturday, with simulcasts aired online via the station’s website, www.wbszfm.com. 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.

Results

Northern Renegades Traditional Sprints

Feature: 1-8: Lance Solem, Duluth, MN; Paul Schultz, Grand Rapids, MN; Ken Hron, Grand Rapids, MN; Chris Lewis, Grand Rapids, MN; Caley Emerson, Grand Rapids, MN; Nick DaRonco, Britt, MN; Brian Trembath, Hastings, MN; Corey Olson, Duluth, MN.

Heat: DaRonco; Solem; Emerson; Rob Caho Jr, Rush City, MN; Lewis; Schultz; Hron; Trembath; Olson.

WISSOTA Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: Brandon Copp, Brule; Paul Niznik, Medford; Cole Spacek, Phillips; Jake Hiatt, Mason; Pat Cook, Washburn; Alex Van Natta, Minocqua; Rick Rivord, Superior; Al Uotinen, Superior; Neil Balduc, Bessemer, MI; Mike Klippenstein, Proctor, MN.

11: Shane Kisling, Butternut.

Heat 1: Copp; Cook; Kisling; Rivord; Uotinen; Klippenstein.

Heat 2: Hiatt; Balduc; Spacek; Niznik; Van Natta.

WISSOTA Super Stocks

Feature: 1-10: Steve Stuart, Ashland; Shawn McFadden, Ashland; Nick Oreskovich, Mason; Justin Weinberger, Butternut; Cory Casari, Montreal; Matt Deragon, Ashland; Rita Anderson, South Range; Aaron Mashlan, Ashland; Don Muzzy, Ironwood, MI; Scott Lawrence, Superior.

11-12: Myron Basina, Washburn; Charlie Anderson, Ironwood, MI.

Heat 1: Stuart; Weinberger; Deragon; Mashlan; R Anderson; Casari.

Heat 2: Oreskovich; McFadden; Lawrence; C Anderson; Muzzy; Basina.

WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: Brady Uotinen, Superior; Tanner Hicks, Ashland; Tyler Vernon, Mason; Jesse Aho, Toivola, MI; Ross Fuhrman, Ashland; Duane Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; Jack Rivord, Superior; Dalton Mains, Foxboro; Tyler Hudack, Ashland; Ryan Barningham, Bayfield.

11-18: Paul Niznik, Medford; Mitch Kieber, Ironwood, MI; Matt Jacobson, Bessemer, MI; Bryan Lund, Ashland; Diamond Bressette, Spooner; Neil Dees, Hurley; James Vendela, South Range; Paul Suzik, Ironwood, MI.

Heat 1: Vernon; Hudack; Bressette; Kieber; Dees.

Heat 2: Uotinen; Vendela; Hicks; Mains; Jacobson; Barningham.

Heat 3: Suzik; Aho; Fuhrman; Rivord; Niznik; Lund.

WISSOTA Pure Stocks

Feature: 1-4: Cory Jorgensen, Duluth, MN; RJ Holly, Marengo; Aaron Bernick, Duluth, MN; Zene Anderson, Superior.

Heat: Jorgensen; Holly; Bernick; Anderson.

ABC Six-Cylinders

Feature: 1-10: Dalton Truchon, Ashland; Dale Coddington, Hayward; Tiffany Hudack, Ashland; Jake Nevala, Ashland; Shane Basina, Bayfield; Trenton Bond, Mason; Mathew Rohlfing, Cable; Dennis Groom, Ashland; Jakob Bond, Mason; Austin Olby, Marengo.

11-12: Adam Traaholt, Ashland; Julian Root, Ashland.

Heat 1: Coddington; Bubba Anderson, Trego; Root; T Bond; Rohlfing; Traaholt; Nevala.

Heat 2: Truchon; Groom; Hudack; Basina; Olby; J Bond.

WISSOTA Hornets

Feature: 1-4: DeJay Jarecki, Ashland; Shane Basina, Bayfield; Derek Dunbar, Iron River; Brandon Hummelmeier, Ashland.

Heat: Jarecki; Basina; Dunbar; Hummelmeier.