July 27th Results

Balog Tops IRA Field at ABC Again

by Nick Gima

                Ashland, WI, July 27 — In six previous scheduled visits by the touring Interstate Racing Association’s winged 410 sprint cars to the ABC Raceway, Bill Balog has captured four A-main wins. The other two shows were rained out.

After this past Saturday’s program, the score now reads Balog 5, Mother Nature 2.

The North Pole, AK, native, who now calls Hartland, WI, home, scored a thrilling win in the headline event of a six-division program presented by the NAPA Auto Parts stores of Ashland and Washburn in front of a large crowd on a muggy, breezy night at the three-eighths-mile northern Wisconsin red-clay oval.

Other winners on this night included Jeff Spacek (WISSOTA Modifieds) and Dave Flynn (WISSOTA Super Stocks), each for the first time in two seasons; Jack Rivord (WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds) for the first time in his career; and Randy Graham (WISSOTA Pure Stocks) and Hunter McDougall (WISSOTA Hornets) as repeat winners.

Scott Thiel, who holds the Raceway’s record for the fastest single-lap time and speed ever recorded here (12.382 seconds, 109.109 mph), set the fastest lap on this night’s qualifying with a 12.611-second tour (107.049 mph). Of the 18 IRA entries, ten posted qualifying lap times which equated to average speeds of 100 mph or more on the sticky, tricky red-clay oval.

By virtue of a blind draw, and with the assistance of a young fan in the stands, Thiel started the 30-lap A-main on the outside of the front row and immediately established a lightning-fast pace, pulling out to a straightaway-length advantage on polestarter Steve Meyer. Jeremy Schultz and Joey Moughan stayed as tight as they could to Meyer’s push bar, with Jordan Goldesberry pestering Moughan for fourth.

Balog, who started on the outside of row 4, quickly made inroads to the front, getting by Goldesberry for fifth on lap 2 and then around Moughan for fourth on lap 7. By that time Thiel had already begun picking his way through slower traffic while maintaining a sizable advantage on Meyer.

On lap 9 Nick Matusewski’s car rolled in turn 2 to bring about the first of a series of yellow-flag slowdowns, limiting the green-flag runs to three or four laps at a time at best. Thiel got away again on the restart, but within a couple of laps Bill Wirth’s car crept to a stop at the top of turn 3 to slow the pace again.

Balog used a classic sprint car “slide-job” to cut across the nose of Schultz’s car on lap 12 to take third place, just one lap before Ben Schmidt’s wild tumble down the front straightaway brought about another break in the action. Balog tried the same tactic on Meyer on the ensuing restart, but Meyer answered back to hold the spot, allowing Thiel to rebuild his advantage over a couple more laps before Russel Borland’s spin on lap 17 brought stalled the show again.

On that restart Balog’s slide worked to displace Meyer for second in turns 1 and 2, but on the other end of the track the pair made contact as Meyer fought back, causing Meyer’s racer to back into the turn 3 wall hard and ending his night.

Thiel pulled away again on the next restart, and over the next seven laps he held a comfortable lead. But once he reached the back of the field, Balog closed quickly. The series’ points leader made one desperate attempt with five laps to go to steal the lead away, but he nearly put himself into the turn 2 wall. However, Balog recovered and closed the gap again, and on lap 27 he threw his sprinter under Thiel’s and into thick slower traffic and took the lead. Thiel tried to drive back under Balog in turn 2, but he spun himself out of contention, leaving Balog a wide-open green-white-checkered run to the finish.

“I was pushing pretty hard,” Balog said of his charge through the field, especially regarding his pass of Meyer for second. “But I had a good car. These things (sprint cars) are so finicky; they gotta be right.”

Schultz stayed in the top five throughout the run to score a second-place paycheck, while Goldesberry also stuck close to the front to take third. Scotty Nietzel and Scott Biertzer battled back-and-forth during the entire run, and by virtue of the attrition they landed fourth and fifth, respectively.

While the sprints saw six yellow flags in 30 laps, the other five divisions ran a combined total of 80 feature laps with a single caution flag thrown. That lone stoppage came one lap into the Modified 20-lap headliner, when thick traffic combined with a fast racetrack produced a scramble for positions on the front straightaway, a lot of contact and a three-car pile-up in turn 1. Polestarter Todd Gehl then led the field back to green but did not stay there long, as Steve Lavasseur worked his way around Bill Byholm and Gehl into the top spot.

Spacek, who started outside on row 4, want low to displace Gehl for second on lap 3, then repeated the move on Lavasseur one circuit later to take the lead for good. By lap 7 the six-time track champion from Phillips had a 1.4-second lead on another six-time champ, Al Uotinen, who got by Lavasseur on the previous go-around.

Even as he worked his way through backmarkers Spacek extended his advantage, eventually crossing the under the checkers a full 3.5 seconds ahead of Uotinen. Lavasseur and Steve Stuart put on a great side-by-side race for third, which was eventually won by Stuart, and Bill Byholm held a solid fifth throughout most of the run.

The Super Stock feature was a true thriller, with Flynn and Greg Kuklinski racing right to the wire for the win. Kuklinski engaged with polestarter Andrew Mackey and Cory Casari in a three-wide battle right at the drop of the green, with Kuklinski eventually claiming the lead. It took Casari another three laps before he could work his way past Mackey for second, but he struggled to trim into Kuklinski’s two-car-length advantage.

Flynn, who like Spacek started outside on row 4, used the low line of the track to slip through the field on his way to third place, and on lap 8 he was threatening Casari for second. Casari, meanwhile, made a number of moves to challenge Kuklinski, but the Raceway’s all-time feature wins leader held a strong middle-groove line and refused to give the lead away. With seven laps to go Flynn dove low to get by Casari, and from there the visitor from Superior chipped away at the Ironwood, MI, veteran’s stronghold.

With Casari and 12th-starting Nick Oreskovich closing in on the final lap, Flynn made one last dive to the bottom through turn 4, and he edged Kuklinski at the finish line by .107 seconds – about six feet. Oreskovich just nipped Casari for third, and Mackey completed a very impressive night with a fifth-place performance.

Jack Rivord’s run in the Midwest Mod 20-lapper was a no-doubter – after an early tussle with Gunner Peterson and Marcus Dunbar, the sophomore driver from Superior led every lap for his first-ever feature win. Rivord overcame the early battle and built a stout early advantage, while Peterson held off threats from Dunbar, Clay Passuello and George Dalbeck. Before the mid-point of the race Rivord’s lead was over 1.8 seconds, and by lap 12 he was slicing his way through the slower part of the field.

Peterson diced with Dalbeck all he could before finally giving up second to the divisional points leader. Dalbeck then went on a mission, cutting nearly a full second off of Rivord’s advantage while slicing his way through lapped traffic. But Rivord ran a smooth line and still had a lead of .978 seconds at the final stripe. Peterson, Dunbar and Passuello completed a close-knit top five.

Graham, who has split six of the seven Pure Stock features run at ABC so far this summer with Justin Weinberger, battled with Weinberger again on Saturday before claiming his fourth win of the season in the class.

A bump at the start of the 10-lap feature between front-row starters Jessie Mudgett and Brandle Pupp opened the top lane of the track for Weinberger to get by and claim the initial lead, and Graham followed suit into second. From there the lead pair ran away from the rest of the pack, running mostly side-by-side, with Weinberger up high and Graham down low, for several laps.

It wasn’t until lap 8 that Graham found the traction he needed to get completely by Weinberger, clearing for the lead as the pair took the white flag. Graham held on for his 25th career feature win at Ashland and his eighth of the year (including four in the ABC Six-Cylinders), less than a car-length ahead of Weinberger. Pupp finished a distant third, ahead of Mudgett and Jeff Christman.

The Hornets raced for fun and money – not points – on this night, as they were not originally on the docket for this show. McDougall, the Duluth, MN, youngster who last won on opening night, made a three-wide pass for the lead stick on lap 2 and pulled away for the win.

By the mid-point of the 10-lap main event McDougall had built up a ten-length lead, while Derek Dunbar, Paul George and Dayna Marken tussled in close proximity throughout the run, eventually finishing second through fourth, respectively, behind McDougall. Polestarter Shawn Young, whose car dropped from the run with a couple of laps to go, was credited with fifth.

Spacek posted the fastest lap in the Modified feature with a time of 16.665 seconds (81.008 mph). Rookie Mackey claimed his first fast-lap bonus with a time of 17.523 seconds (77.042 mph) in the Super Stock feature, and Dalbeck was quickest in the Mid-Mods (17.351; 77.805).

The Midwest Mods will be in the spotlight on Saturday, August 3, when the ABC Raceway presents its 13th annual “Mid-Mod Madness” special, to be presented by the Safari Tavern and the Lake Shore Cafe, both of Ashland. The WISSOTA Modifieds, Super Stocks, Pure Stocks and Hornets, plus the ABC Six-Cylinders, will also be on the program, with the Super Stocks completing their rain-delayed feature race from July 9 as well as running their full show.

Hot laps will start at 6:15, and the first green flag of the night should fly right at 7 pm. WBSZ, 93.3 FM, will air “Race Night” from 4:30 until 6 pm with pre-race coverage.

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

IRA Winged Sprints

Feature: 1-10: Bill Balog, Hartland; Jeremy Schultz, Beaver Dam; Jordan Goldesberry, Springfield, IL; Scotty Nietzel, Beaver Dam; Scott Biertzer, West Bend; Dave Uttech, Kenosha; Joey Moughan, Springfield, IL; Russel Borland, Kewaskum; Jereme Schroeder, Lake Villa, IL; Scott Thiel, Sheboygan.

11-16: Steve Meyer, Sheboygan Falls; Matt Wiese, Lomira; Ben Schmidt, Howards Grove; Bill Wirth, Cudahy; Wayne Modjeski, Oak Creek; Nick Matusewski, Antigo.

Heat 1: Meyer; Thiel; Schultz; Schroeder; Moughan; Patrick Heikkinen, Eveleth, MN.

Heat 2: Nietzel; Wirth; Balog; Schmidt; Matusewski; Modjeski.

Heat 3: Borland; Goldesberry; Biertzer; Uttech; Wiese.

Qualifying: Thiel, 12.611 secs, 107.049 mph.

WISSOTA Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: Jeff Spacek, Phillips; Al Uotinen, Superior; Steve Stuart, Ashland; Steve Lavasseur, River Falls; Bill Byholm, Glidden; Cole Spacek, Phillips; Todd Gehl, Solon Springs; Cole Varsho, Stratford; Paul Suzik, Ironwood, MI; Cody Carlson, Superior.

11-16: Tyler Luger, Oxford; Pat Cook, Washburn; Robby Bunkelman, Abbotsford; Jake Hiatt, Mason; Kevin Eder, Ashland; Neil Balduc, Bessemer, MI.

Heat 1: Stuart; Balduc; Eder; Gehl; Hiatt; Bunkelman; Luger; Cook.

Heat 2: J Spacek; Byholm; Uotinen; Lavasseur; Suzik; Varsho; C Spacek; Carlson.

WISSOTA Super Stocks

Feature: 1-10: Dave Flynn, Superior; Greg Kuklinski, Ironwood, MI; Nick Oreskovich, Mason; Cory Casari, Montreal; Andrew Mackey, Roseville, MN; Don Muzzy, Ironwood, MI; Shawn McFadden, Ashland; Patrick Beeksma, Ironwood, MI; Kyle Copp, Brule; Matt Deragon, Ashland.

11-13: Patrick Heikkinen, Eveleth, MN; Aaron Mashlan, Ashland; Rita Anderson, South Range.

Heat 1: Mackey; Flynn; Casari; Copp; Mashlan; Oreskovich.

Heat 2: Kuklinski; Deragon; Beeksma; Muzzy; McFadden; Anderson.

WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: Jack Rivord, Superior; George Dalbeck, Wakefield, MI; Gunner Peterson, South Range; Marcus Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; Clay Passuello, Ironwood, MI; David Simpson, Thunder Bay, ON; Tyler Vernon, Ashland; Brandon Copp, Brule; Jesse Aho, Toivola, MI; Duane Dunbar, Marenisco, MI.

11-18: George Truscott, Greenland, MI; Justin Weinberger, Park Falls; Ross Fuhrman, Ashland; Dalton Mains, Foxboro; Bryan Lund, Ashland; Bill Muhlig, Bessemer, MI; Ryan Barningham, Bayfield; Dave DeVente, Neebing, ON.

Heat 1: M Dunbar; Dalbeck; Vernon; Rivord; Aho; Fuhrman; Weinberger; DeVente; Mains.

Heat 2: Simpson; Copp; Passuello; Peterson; D Dunbar; Truscott; Barningham; Lund; Muhlig.

WISSOTA Pure Stocks

Feature: 1-5: Randy Graham, Trego; Justin Weinberger, Park Falls; Brandle Pupp, Highbridge; Jessie Mudgett, Park Falls; Jeff Christman, South Range.

Heat: Weinberger; Graham; Pupp; Christman; Mudgett.

WISSOTA Hornets

Feature: 1-6: Hunter McDougall, Duluth, MN; Derek Dunbar, Iron River; Paul George, Princeton, MN; Dayna Marken, Duluth, MN; Shawn Young, Stone Lake; Mitch Kieber, Ironwood, MI.

Heat: Dunbar; Marken; McDougall; Young; Kieber; George.

IRA SPRINTS July 27th

High-Speed Winged Sprints Set to Invade ABC Raceway on Saturday

by Nick Gima

                Ashland, WI, July 25 — After a one-year hiatus, the Interstate Racing Association’s 410 “outlaw” sprint cars are set to return to the ABC Raceway on Saturday night.

In a program to be presented by the NAPA Auto Parts stores of Ashland and Washburn, the 1,200-pound, 800-plus-horsepower “winged warriors” will once again fly around the award-winning three-eighths-mile red-clay oval located just south of Ashland at what are expected to be triple-digit speeds.

The popular, entertaining Midwestern-based traveling sprint car series will be at the midpoint of its 33-race season when its crews pull in to Ashland for Saturday’s show, although the early portion of their schedule has been plagued by rain-outs. The teams will also be in the middle of a very busy four-night, four-track race weekend, which will have started in Plymouth on Thursday (where Australian driver James McFadden took the win) and continued in Antigo on Friday before arriving here.

The weekend will conclude with a program at the historic Angell Park Speedway in Sun Prairie on Sunday.

“Because of the number of shows they are running during this particular weekend, we could see as many as 20 to 25 of the IRA’s touring regulars at our track on Saturday,” noted ABC Raceway president Eric Erickson earlier this week. “It should be a special program, considering the importance of the weekend for their series as well as the fact that we haven’t seen the IRA here in a while.”

The series first performed at Ashland in 2011, with Mike Reinke of Howards Grove posting a then-track-record single-lap time in IRA qualifying of 12.540 seconds – or 107.656 mph. Billy Balog of Hartland was the first driver to break 109 mph with a qualifying lap time of 12.382 seconds (109.029 mph) in 2012. In 2017 Scott Thiel of Sheboygan set the current track record during IRA qualifying at 12.373 seconds, or 109.109 mph.

By comparison, during the World of Outlaws Late Model Series’ visit here earlier this month, Menomonie’s Jimmy Mars set the Raceway’s all-time single-lap record time for a stock-bodied car at 14.388 seconds, or 93.828 mph. Ashland’s Steve Stuart owns the current track record for WISSOTA Modifieds – which regularly run at ABC – with a lap time of 15.979 seconds (84.486 mph) back in 2015.

Balog has won every IRA feature run at ABC – in 2011, ‘12, ‘14, and ‘17, while Mother Nature was victorious due to cancellations of the scheduled visits in 2013 and ‘15. The Raceway was unable to make scheduling arrangements work with the IRA in 2016 and ‘18, but according to Erickson it’s has been a priority of the IRA to try to set up a stop in Ashland every year since that inaugural 2011 visit.

“Their drivers love our track,” Erickson explained. “It’s a track that favors dependence on the driver’s ability rather than high horsepower to make it around this place. And the red-clay surface is sticky and fast, so the action is always very intense.”

Balog won an unprecedented seven straight IRA titles from 2008-’14 and is the series’ current points leader, thanks to three A-main wins over the series’ first ten races. Thiel sits second in the standings heading into the weekend, followed by Beaver Dam campaigners Jeremy Schultz and Scott Nietzel. Defending IRA champ Jake Blackhurst of Hanna City, IL, is ninth in points.

The WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds, Super Stocks, Midwest Mods and Pure Stocks will also partake in the program, while WISSOTA Hornets are also welcome to run a non-points-paying program due to their late addition to the menu. The track’s Six-Cylinders will have the night off. Hot laps will start at 6:15, while the heat races are slated to start at 7 pm.

Grandstand admission prices are set at $20 for adults and $10 for kids ages 5-12.

“Race Night” will air on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, with up-to-date track news and weather updates every 15-20 minutes from 4:30-6 pm; coverage will also stream on www.wbszfm.com and on the free Heartland Communications Group radio app.

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,

The ABC Raceway will close out the July portion of its 2019 schedule on a fast-paced note, as the high-powered Interstate Racing Association’s 410 winged outlaw sprints will take to the red-clay oval on July 27. The program, to be presented by the NAPA Auto Parts Stores of Ashland and Washburn, will spotlight these 800-horsepower machines as they reach triple-digit speeds on the three-eighths-mile oval.

The show will also include the WISSOTA Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Mods, Pure stocks and Hornets. ABC Six-Cylinders are off.

Hot laps will start at 6:15, and the first green flag of the night is set to fly at 7 pm. WBSZ, 93.3 FM, will air “Race Night” from 4:30 until 6 pm with pre-race coverage.

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.

July 20th results

Mass Continues Dominance of FastLane Supers Series with ABC Raceway Win

by Nick Gima

                Ashland, WI, July 20 — In 2017, Dave Mass came to the ABC Raceway to compete in the FastLane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Series, and he led every lap to win his first-ever feature at the northern Wisconsin red-clay oval. He went on to claim the Series title a weekend later.

On Saturday, Mass led every lap of the FastLane Series feature at Ashland to claim his second-career feature win, putting him in a nearly perfect position for history to repeat itself.

The win at ABC was the third straight over the first four races of the Series for the veteran East Bethel, MN, speedster, after a second-place finish behind Tim Johnson in the tour’s opener at Oglivie, MN, the previous Saturday. It also gives him a solid points lead heading into the Series’ finale at the Proctor (MN) Speedway on Sunday, July 21.

With Halvor Lines of Duluth, MN, coming on board to help support the Series in its fifth season, a $700 winner’s check awaited the winner of Saturday’s 33-lap main event, with the race distance honoring the late ABC Raceway Hall of Fame WISSOTA Super Stock driver and car owner Don Koivisto. Mass started on the front row and swept around polesitter Shawn McFadden Jr for the only pass for the lead during the entire race, while defending Series champion Kevin Burdick came from the outside of row 4 to mix things up with Dave Flynn and Nick Oreskovich in an early top-five battle.

With Burdick working to get by Flynn for third on lap 2, Mass had already built up a lead of over a second on McFadden, and as the early laps stayed under green Mass continued to build on his advantage. Burdick used an outside line to move past McFadden on lap 8, but by then Mass’s lead was nearly two full seconds as he was beginning to contend with the tail end of the field.

A lap 11 tangle between Scott Lawrence and Tim Johnson put Burdick and McFadden on the leader’s back bumper for the restart, and Burdick immediately shot high and pulled alongside Mass in a challenge for the lead. But Mass overcame the threat and rebuilt his advantage, pushing to another lead of over a second-and-a-half before Don Muzzy’s spin slowed the pace again on lap 18.

Mass again pulled away as the green lights came back on, while 2015 Series champ Curt Myers appeared in the top five and battled with Flynn for a couple of laps for fourth. But Flynn held firm to the position and, on lap 24, took away third from McFadden. A couple of laps later, as Mass was slicing through backmarkers with relative ease, Burdick struggled before clearing the lapped Tucker Quinn, which seemed to rattle Quinn enough to cause him to loop his ride, forcing one last restart with three laps remaining.

Mass bolted away again for a final winning margin of about a second-and-a-half, while Burdick edged Flynn at the checkers for second. Myers came home fourth ahead of McFadden.

Six-time ABC Raceway track champion Al Uotinen grabbed the early advantage of the 20-lap WISSOTA Modified feature, but Ashland’s Steve Stuart put on a clinic on how to run the extreme high line, sweeping around Uotinen and running away to his 35th career feature win at his hometown track. Stuart started on the outside of the third row, but after just three quick laps he had pulled to the leader’s back bumper, and when Uotinen left the high lane open coming out of turn 2 on lap 6, Stuart flashed by.

Visiting Mike Anderson, who started directly behind Stuart, worked his way past Bill Byholm for third at about the same time as Stuart took over the lead, and after Kevin Eder’s ride crept to a halt on the track on lap 8, Anderson was in a prime position to contend for the win, as he overtook Uotinen on the restart.

A Tyler Luger spin on lap 12 tightened the field up again, and a four-car pile-up that collected Uotinen, Jeff Spacek and Bill Byholm – all top-five runners at the time – negated the restart attempt. Once under green, however, Anderson had a couple of opportunities to steal the lead away, but Stuart maintained his momentum and ran off to a winning margin of 1.744 seconds. Spacek grabbed third from Uotinen just prior to the restart, and Pat Cook got by Uotinen just after the green came back out to take fourth.

Visiting Shane Halopka of Greenwood took advantage of a late-race restart to grab his second WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature win in just his third visit here in 2019. Halopka started outside on the fourth row but was already in fourth when polestarter Gunner Peterson and Ross Fuhrman made hard contact while battling for second after the first lap of the race, sending Peterson to the pits to make repairs.

On the restart Fuhrman slowed and sank through the field, allowing points leader George Dalbeck to slip past Halopka into third, behind leader Justin Weinberger and David Simpson. On lap 5 Simpson worked his way past Weinberger, and he built himself a one-second lead over the next four laps until Weinberger could no longer hold back Dalbeck’s charge.

On lap 14 Dalbeck caught and passed Simpson, aided by the fact that leader got caught behind the slower Ryan Barningham. Halopka had just gotten by Weinberger for third on the same lap, just before Weinberger and fifth-running Brandon Copp tangled in turn 2. Dalbeck worked his way around Simpson three laps after the restart, and Peterson’s car spun again on lap 17, forcing a three-lap shootout.

Contact between Simpson and Dalbeck on the restart slowed both cars, allowing Halopka to dive low to take the lead. Dalbeck charged back and pulled alongside Halopka coming out of turn 4 in a drag race to the finish, but Halopka won by 64 one-thousandths of a second. Fourteenth-starting Jesse Aho also took advantage of the Simpson-Dalbeck bump to take third, just ahead of Simpson and Marcus Dunbar.

Superior’s Jared Akervik sped away from the pole to win his first-ever WISSOTA Pure Stock feature at the ABC Raceway on Saturday, just an hour or so after winning his first-ever heat race here. Akervik stayed just ahead of a tight three-car battle for second between Cory Jorgensen, Weinberger and Randy Graham for the first half of the 15-lapper, but after Brandle Pupp and visiting Brent Miller got together to bring about a lap 7 yellow flag, Akervik fended off a strong outside challenge by Graham and scooted away to a relatively comfortable win.

After Graham could not make his pass for the lead stick, he and Jorgensen wrestled over second spot until Graham eventually gained the position, but Jorgensen was right on his tail for third. Weinberger caught up to the pair to finish a close fourth, and Pupp was a distance back in fifth.

Graham turned a tight-formation battle in the ABC Six-Cylinder headliner into a bit of a laugher, winning by a margin of well over eight seconds. The divisional points leader from Trego started eighth out of the 11 cars on the grid and was in the middle of a six-car logjam for third when contact forced Jordan Pearce’s car to snap suddenly to the right. He barely avoided heavy contact with the front-straight concrete wall and was able to continue, and as the race stayed under green Graham had maneuvered his way into fourth, behind leader Adam Traaholt, Jake Nevala and DeJay Jarecki.

Unfortunately for Pearce, his car was damaged enough that he lost control and hit an infield marker tire on lap 2. On the restart Jarecki moved by Nevala to second, and two circuits later Jarecki overtook Traaholt for the lead. Graham followed Jarecki into second a lap later, and the lead duo battled side-by-side for a bit before Graham took control.

Graham built up a comfortable cushion over the next few laps, which grew significantly when Jarecki’s car slowed with five laps to go. The lead was more than a straightaway as Graham crossed under the checkers for his fourth win of the season in the Sixes, while Bubba Anderson took second away from Traaholt with four laps to go. Dalton Truchon, Forrest Schultz and Jonathan Popp all got by Traaholt over the closing laps as well and finished third through fifth in a close-knit pack.

Fast-lap bonuses in the features went to Stuart in the Mods (17.557 seconds; 76.892 mph), Mass in the Supers (17.870; 75.546), Simpson in the Mid-Mods (18.203; 74.164), Graham in the Sixes (19.078; 70.762), and Akervik in the Pure Stocks (19.845; 68.027).

The ABC Raceway will close out the July portion of its 2019 schedule on a fast-paced note, as the high-powered Interstate Racing Association’s 410 winged outlaw sprints will take to the red-clay oval on July 27. The program, to be presented by the NAPA Auto Parts Stores of Ashland and Washburn, will spotlight these 800-horsepower machines as they reach triple-digit speeds on the three-eighths-mile oval.

The show will also include the WISSOTA Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Mods, plus the ABC Six-Cylinders. The WISSOTA Pure Stocks and Hornets are currently scheduled for a night off, but that may change during the course of the week.

Hot laps will start at 6:15, and the first green flag of the night is set to fly at 7 pm. WBSZ, 93.3 FM, will air “Race Night” from 4:30 until 6 pm with pre-race coverage.

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: Steve Stuart, Ashland; Mike Anderson, Jim Falls; Jeff Spacek, Phillips; Pat Cook, Washburn; Al Uotinen, Superior; Steve Lavasseur, River Falls; Robby Bunkelman, Abbotsford; Bill Byholm, Glidden; Paul Niznik, Medford; Jake Hiatt, Mason.

11-14: Tyler Luger, Oxford; Paul Suzik, Ironwood, MI; Cole Varsho, Stratford; Kevin Eder, Ashland.

Heat 1: Stuart; Uotinen; Lavasseur; Byholm; Bunkelman; Niznik; Hiatt; Luger.

Heat 2: Spacek; Anderson; Suzik; Cook; Neil Balduc, Bessemer, MI; Eder; Varsho.

WISSOTA Super Stocks

Feature: 1-10: Dave Mass, East Bethel, MN; Kevin Burdick, Proctor, MN; Dave Flynn, Superior; Curt Myers, Cameron; Shawn McFadden, Ashland; Dexton Koch, Becker, MN; Kyle Copp, Brule; Nick Oreskovich, Mason; Matt Deragon, Ashland; Andy Grymala, Superior.

11-20: DJ Keeler, Superior; Eric Olson, Ladysmith; Chris Wark, Zimmerman, MN; Jordan Henkemeyer, Sauk Rapids, MN; John Adams, Princeton, MN; Chad Fouquette, Sartell, MN; Rich Bishop, New Richmond; Larry Both, Thunder Bay, ON; Shawn Fernkes, Pennock, MN; Tucker Quinn, Ladysmith.

21-25: Kurt Becken, Big Lake, MN; Don Muzzy, Ironwood, MI; Tim Johnson, Brainerd, MN; Scott Lawrence, Superior; Andrew Mackey, Roseville, MN.

Heat 1: Mass; Oreskovich; Grymala; Lawrence; Keeler; Dan Severson, Ironton, MN; Matt Fester, Atwater, MN; Brian Carl, Duluth, MN; Rita Anderson, South Range.

Heat 2: McFadden; Copp; Wark; Mackey; C Fouquette; Rick Randall, Wakefield, MI; Muzzy; Annika Hammitt, Cloquet, MN; Cory Casari, Montreal.

Heat 3: Flynn; Burdick; Fernkes; Johnson; Quinn; Jon Hammitt, Cloquet, MN; Devin Fouquette, Sartell, MN; Allan Cleveland, Breckenridge, MN.

Heat 4: Becken; Olson; Deragon; Henkemeyer; Ronnie Malecki, Superior; Bishop; Josh Bach, Barron; Aaron Mashlan, Ashland.

Heat 5: Koch; Myers; Adams; Both; Greg Kuklinski, Ironwood, MI; Patrick Beeksma, Ironwood, MI; Jared Zimpel, Braham, MN; Jamie Reberg, Gilbert, MN.

Semi-Feature 1: Keeler; Quinn; Severson; Bishop; Bach; Mashlan; Reberg; A Hammitt.

Semi-Feature 2: C Fouquette; Muzzy; Casari; Fester; Carl; J Hammitt; Anderson; Malecki.

WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: Shane Halopka, Greenwood; George Dalbeck, Wakefield, MI; Jesse Aho, Toivola, MI; David Simpson, Thunder Bay, ON; Marcus Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; Tyler Vernon, Ashland; Brandon Copp, Brule; Jimmy Latvala, Solon Springs; Duane Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; Ross Fuhrman, Ashland.

11-17: Bryan Lund, Ashland; Bill Muhlig, Bessemer, MI; Steve Altman, Merce; Ryan Barningham, Bayfield; Dalton Mains, Foxboro; Gunner Peterson, South Range; Justin Weinberger, Park Falls.

Heat 1: Dalbeck; Latvala; Weinberger; Halopka; Vernon; M Dunbar; Mains; Aho; Muhlig.

Heat 2: Simpson; Copp; Peterson; Fuhrman; D Dunbar; Barningham; Lund; Altman.

ABC Six-Cylinders

Feature: 1-10: Randy Graham, Trego; Bubba Anderson, Trego; Dalton Truchon, Ashland; Forrest Schultz, Ashland; Jonathan Popp, Iron River; Adam Traaholt, Ashland; Jake Nevala, Ashland; Jordan Pearce, Ashland; Matt rohlfing, Cable; DeJay Jarecki, Ashland.

11: Devin Dalbec, Ashland.

Heat 1: Graham; Anderson; Schultz; Jarecki; Truchon; Rohlfing.

Heat 2: Nevala; Pearce; Traaholt; Dalbec; Popp.

WISSOTA Pure Stocks

Feature: 1-8: Jared Akervik, Superior; Randy Graham, Trego; Cory Jorgensen, Duluth, MN; Justin Weinberger, Park Falls; Brandle Pupp, Highbridge; Jeff Christman, South Range; Jessie Mudgett, Park Falls; Brent Miller, Cameron.

Heat: Akervik; Weinberger; Graham; Jorgensen; Miller; Pupp; Christman; Mudgett; Brock Beilke, Hayward.

All photos by Shooterguy Action Photography

July 20th Super Stock Series

ABC Raceway to Host Super Stock Special on Saturday

by Nick Gima

                Ashland, WI, July 18 — The fifth edition of the FastLane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Series will make its way to the ABC Raceway this Saturday night.

The Series, which gives the WISSOTA Super Stocks a chance to compete for big money at five regional race tracks, will be part of a five-division race program at the award-winning northern Wisconsin speedplant. FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating of Ashland, along with Halvor Lines Trucking of Duluth, MN, are the presenting sponsors of the Series.

The FastLane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Series has become wildly popular among both racers and fans because of the tireless efforts of Dennis McCauley of the Gondik Law Speedway in Superior and Chris Bretting of FastLane Motorsports, who joined forces to develop a tour for drivers from a division that represents one of the largest segments of racers in WISSOTA. The tour has grown to what is easily the best-attended, best-paying and strongest-supported tour of its type in the Upper Midwest.

The ABC Raceway was one of the three original tracks involved in hosting the inaugural Series in 2015, along with Gondik Law Speedway and the Proctor (MN) Speedway. Other tracks have been involved at different times over the course of the tour’s existence, but the original trio of tracks have been part of all five of the Series’ seasons.

This year’s tour began last Saturday at Oglivie (MN) Raceway, where Tim Johnson of Brainerd, MN, came from mid-pack to overtake Dave Mass of East Bethel, MN, for the feature win. Mass gained a measure of revenge the following night on his home track of Granite City Speedway in Sauk Rapids, MN, powering from the fourth row to take the checkered flag ahead of defending Series champion Kevin Burdick of Proctor.

Other drivers who have won the Series title in years past include Mass in 2017, Superior’s Scott Lawrence in 2016, and Curt Myers of Cameron in 2015. Burdick, Mass and Myers each won their FastLane Series features at ABC on their way to their titles, while Mason’s Nick Oreskovich won the tour stop here in ‘16.

After Friday’s Series stop at Superior, over 40 competitors from as many as six states and two Canadian provinces are expected to invade Ashland’s three-eighths-mile red-clay oval to take a shot at the $700 feature winner’s check. Upon completion of Sunday’s Series finale in Proctor, over $40,000 in purse, points fund and contingency monies will have been awarded.

The WISSOTA Hornets will get the night off, but the WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds, Midwest Mods and Pure Stocks, and the track’s own Six-Cylinders, will join the Super Stocks in action. Hot laps will start at 6:15, while the heat races are slated to start at 7 pm. “Race Night” will air on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, with up-to-date track news and weather updates every 15-20 minutes from 4:30-6 pm; coverage will also stream on www.wbszfm.com and on the free Heartland Communications Group radio app.

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

WISSOTA Super Stocks return with a bang on July 20 for the fourth race of the five-night, five-track Fast Lane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Series, presented by Halvor Lines. Over 50 Super Stocks are expected to compete for the $700 feature winner’s check, which is part of the more than $40,000 in purse, points fund and contingencies to be paid out to participating drivers over course of the Series.

The WISSOTA Hornets will get the night off, but the WISSOTA Modifieds, Midwest Mods and Pure Stocks and the ABC Six-Cylinders will be in attendance for this show. Hot laps will start at 6, and the first green flag of the night is set to fly at 7 pm. WBSZ, 93.3 FM, will air “Race Night” from 4:30 until 6 pm with pre-race coverage.

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.

Results July 13th

Smith Claims ABC Hornet ‘Stinger’; Wolkowski Gets 1st Mod Win Here

by Nick Gima

                Ashland, WI, July 13 — Jake Smith of St Joseph, MN, ran away with the ABC Raceway’s Hornet “Stinger” special and the $400 first-place check that went with it on Saturday night, while becoming the track’s first-ever repeat winner in that division.

Also, Canadian Cody Wolkowski dominated early but barely held on for his first career WISSOTA Modified win at ABC on a night highlighted by the popular annual kids’ bike races, presented by Chicago Iron & Supply of Ashland.

Smith, the national leader in WISSOTA Hornet points coming into the weekend, inherited the lead right away as polestarter Tyler Kachinske – fresh off his first career feature win the night before in Superior – could not get his car to go when the green flag dropped to start the 15-lap spotlight event. Smith then pulled away from Hunter McDougall, who sits second in the current national championship standings, and was never really challenged despite a couple of restarts.

The first yellow flag flew on lap 4, when AJ House’s car stopped after tagging the turn 2 guardrail and suffered a flat tire. The other slowdown came on lap 11 when Nate Rose did the same thing as House did at almost the same spot on the track, although he nursed his car around for another half-lap before stopping.

Smith took the checkered flag nearly half a straightaway ahead of a great battle for second, with McDougall holding off Paul George and Paul Ripley over the final four laps. Dayna Marken was a distance back in fifth after starting 15th out of the season-high 16 entries.

In seven Hornet features held at ABC (six this season, plus an exhibition race held in May of last year), Smith is the only driver to win twice.

First-night visitor Josh Rowe threw a little scare into the crowd during the second of the two Hornet heat races, when he flipped his car over while racing for a top-three position. The car rolled once and landed on all four tires, and it had to be pushed into the pits, but after making repairs Rowe was able to start the feature and finished a respectable eighth.

Wolkowski – an infrequent visitor from Thunder Bay, ON – has been steadily stepping up his game over the five or so years that he has been racing in the “big Mods,” so after his runaway win in his heat race he had to like his odds starting from the pole in the A-main. Over the first half of the non-stop 20-lapper he flew away to a huge lead, while Neil Balduc overtook Bill Byholm for second early and then raced side-by-side with Jeff Spacek for several laps.

Wolkowski’s lead had grown to 2.03 seconds by mid-race, but with each lap over the second half of the run that margin thinned. Balduc had grabbed second with an inside move on lap 13 and was within 1.348 seconds of the leader by then, but a bobble in turn 2 the next time around gave runner-up honors back to Spacek.

Over the final five laps Spacek cut noticeably into Wolkowski’s lead, and at the white flag the six-time ABC Raceway champ was only behind by a car-length. Spacek made one last inside dive coming off the final turn, as Wolkowski ran the same outer line that had been working so well for him, and Wolkowski edged Spacek by .008 seconds – one of the smallest of margins ever for a win at Ashland. Balduc maintained third to the end, ahead of Steve Stuart and Kevin Eder.

George Dalbeck of Wakefield, MI, continued his dream 2019 campaign by chalking up his fifth WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature win of the season at ABC, the 21st of his career here, and his 18th in a Mid-Mod to give him the Raceway’s all-time lead for feature wins in the division.

The 20-lap run was hardly uneventful, as each of the five caution-flag slowdowns had significant impacts on the running order. Right after the drop of the first green, front-row starter Marcus Dunbar slapped the back-straight guardrail and suffered a flat tire, dropping him from the event. David Simpson stole the lead from polestarter Gunner Peterson on the restart, but Peterson drove right back by the next time around, with the sixth-starting Dalbeck already in third.

Dalbeck drove low to slip past Peterson for the lead on lap 6, just a circuit before Don Craig smacked the turn 3 wall to bring about the second yellow flag. On the restart Colin Chaschuk was spun while challenging for a top-five spot, and after that restart Simpson took second away from Peterson, whose car broke loose a lap later and slid wildly into the infield with an apparent rear-axle failure, taking him out of contention.

Brandon Copp got by Simpson for second on that restart, but over the next few laps Dalbeck extended his lead to over a second-and-a-quarter. Then, on lap 15, top-ten-running Clay Passuello’s steering broke, forcing his car to dive from the extreme outer edge of turn 4 down across the front straightaway toward the infield. Passuello’s car slammed Ryan Barningham, who was running a lower line a few positions back, causing Barningham’s car to bounce up and over the front of Passuello’s before careening to a stop on the front straight. Fortunately, both drivers were unharmed as they climbed out of their cars to check on each other.

One lap after the final restart of the race Simpson stole second away from Copp, but Dalbeck was uncatchable, speeding to a 1.436-second margin of victory. Visitors Brandon Jensen and Michael Blevins Sr claimed fourth and fifth at the pay window.

Former ABC Six-Cylinder champion Dale Coddington of Hayward completed a successful return to the driver’s seat with his 24th career feature win and first since August 2015. Coddington was providing a “shakedown run” for a car he built for another driver, and it proved to be a successful one.

Two laps into the 15-lap Sixes main event, Bubba Anderson got into points leader Randy Graham while the pair were battling just outside of the top-five, causing a stoppage. Over the next two laps Coddington used an outside line to threaten to take the lead from Jordan Pearce, and after Josh Saunders’ lap 4 spin, Coddington made the move work on the ensuing restart, while Forrest Schultz dove low at the same time to get by Pearce for second.

Coddington was ahead by 1.71 seconds when the caution flag came out for Jake Nevala’s spin on lap 8, and the lead pair were joined by Graham for what turned into a very entertaining three-car dogfight for the win from there on, interrupted only by Dalton Truchon’s spin with three laps remaining. Graham followed Coddington’s outside route past Schultz for second a lap after the restart, but Coddington held on by just .417 seconds at the checkers. Schultz was penalized two spots for a jump on one of the restarts, giving Pearce third and DeJay Jarecki fourth.

Justin Weinberger of Park Falls took advantage of another driver’s misfortune and drove to his third WISSOTA Pure Stock feature win of the season, pulling him into a tie for that division’s points lead with Graham in the process.

Brandle Pupp got the better of polestarter Mikey Blevins and drew to the early lead down the back stretch, but just as he did the driveshaft dropped out from under his car, slowing it dramatically and forcing the rest of the field to take evasive action. From there, however, the rest of the 12-lap event ran without interruption, with Weinberger slipping by Blevins to take the lead and bringing James Vendela along to second.

Weinberger and Vendela ran away from the pack to decide the win, with Vendela throwing his car low into the corners on nearly every lap attempting to wedge his way by, but the 2016 ABC Pure Stock champ was undeterred. Graham got by Blevins for third four laps into the run, but the lead pair were too far away to catch without the aid of a caution stop.

Weinberger answered every one of Vendela’s efforts to muscle past and held on for a half-second margin of victory. Graham followed at a distance, while Blevins held off Dylan Shelton for fourth. However, Blevins did not report to the technical inspection area after the race, disqualifying him from his effort and moving Jeff Christman to fifth in the finishing order.

Fast-lap bonuses in the features went to the winners – Wolkowski in the Mods (17.245 seconds; 78.284 mph), Dalbeck in the Mid-Mods (17.596; 76.722), Coddington in the Sixes (19.229; 70.206), and Weinberger in the Pure Stocks (19.563; 69.008).

Although the WISSOTA Super Stocks were off this past Saturday, they’ll return with a bang on July 20 for the fourth race of the five-night, five-track FastLane Motorsports Northland Super Stock Series, presented by Halvor Lines. Over 50 Super Stocks are expected to compete for the $700 feature winner’s check, which is part of the more than $40,000 in purse, points fund and contingencies to be paid out to participating drivers over course of the Series.

The WISSOTA Hornets will get the night off, but the WISSOTA Modifieds, Midwest Mods and Pure Stocks and the ABC Six-Cylinders will be in attendance for this show. Hot laps will start at 6, and the first green flag of the night is set to fly at 7 pm. WBSZ, 93.3 FM, will air “Race Night” from 4:30 until 6 pm with pre-race coverage.

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: Cody Wolkowski, Thunder Bay, ON; Jeff Spacek, Phillips; Neil Balduc, Bessemer, MI; Steve Stuart, Ashland; Kevin Eder, Ashland; Danny Vang, Deerwood, MN; Pat Cook, Washburn; Jake Hiatt, Mason; Bill Byholm, Glidden; John Toppozini, Thunder Bay, ON.

11-15: Tyler Luger, Oxford; Paul Niznik, Medford; Todd Gehl, Solon Springs; Al Uotinen, Superior; Steve Lavasseur, River Falls.

Heat 1: Stuart; Byholm; Paul Suzik, Ironwood, MI; Vang; Toppozini; Gehl; Uotinen; Niznik.

Heat 2: Wolkowski; Spacek; Balduc; Eder; Lavasseur; Hiatt; Cook; Luger.

WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: George Dalbeck, Wakefield, MI; David Simpson, Thunder Bay, ON; Brandon Copp, Brule; Brandon Jensen, Ellsworth; Michael Blevins Sr, Hibbing, MN; Colin Chaschuk, Neebing, ON; Justin Weinberger, Park Falls; Ross Fuhrman, Ashland; Steve Altman, Mercer; Bryan Lund, Ashland.

11-18: Wayne Jacques, Thunder Bay, ON; Billy Milne, Thunder Bay, ON; Don Craig, Thunder Bay, ON; Bill Muhlig, Bessemer, MI; Ryan Barningham, Bayfield; Clay Passuello, Ironwood, MI; Gunner Peterson, South Range; Marcus Dunbar, Marenisco, MI.

Heat 1: Copp; Jensen; Peterson; Simpson; Craig; Altman; Weinberger; Jacques; Muhlig.

Heat 2: Chaschuk; Blevins; Dunbar; Dalbeck; Fuhrman; Passuello; Barningham; Lund; Milne.

ABC Six-Cylinders

Feature: 1-10: Dale Coddington, Hayward; Randy Graham, Trego; Jordan Pearce, Ashland; DeJay Jarecki, Ashland; Forrest Schultz, Ashland; Dalton Truchon, Ashland; Bubba Anderson, Trego; Devin Dalbec, Ashland; Adam Traaholt, Ashland; Jake Nevala, Ashland.

11-12: Josh Saunders, Spooner; Jonathan Popp, Iron River;

Heat 1: Anderson; Pearce; Truchon; Traaholt; Dalbec; Saunders.

Heat 2: Schultz; Popp; Graham; Coddington; Nevala; Jarecki.

WISSOTA Pure Stocks

Feature: 1-8: Justin Weinberger, Park Falls; James Vendela, South Range; Randy Graham, Trego; Dylan Shelton, Wrenshall, MN; Jeff Christman, South Range; David Nabozny, Ashland; Brandle Pupp, Highbridge.

Heat: Vendela; Graham; Weinberger; Blevins; Pupp; Nabozny; Christman; Skylar Olson, Grand Rapids, MN; Shelton.

WISSOTA Hornets

Feature: 1-10: Jake Smith, St Joseph, MN; Hunter McDougall, Duluth, MN; Paul George, Princeton, MN; Paul Ripley, Duluth, MN; Dayna Marken, Duluth, MN; Neil Dees, Hurley; Jason Ronning, Ashland; Josh Rowe, Duluth, MN; Austin Gibson, Springbrook; Mitch Kieber, Ironwood, MI.

11-16: Kristy Marken, Duluth, MN; Shawn Young, Stone Lake; Derek Dunbar, Iron River; Nate Rose, Duluth, MN; AJ House, Cloquet, MN; Tyler Kachinske, Duluth, MN.

Heat 1: George; Dunbar; Smith; Kachinske; Ronning; K Marken; Young; D Marken.

Heat 2: Ripley; McDougall; Rose; House; Gibson; Kieber; Dees; Rowe.

July 13th Kid’s Bike Races

Kid’s Bike Races & Hornet Special

Hornets, Kids’ Bike Races in Saturday’s Spotlight at ABC Raceway

by Nick Gima

                Ashland, WI, July 10 — The “big boys” came to play on the ABC Raceway’s three-eighths-mile red-clay oval this past Tuesday night. On Saturday, it’ll be time for the little boys – and girls – to play.

Chicago Iron & Supply of Ashland will present the popular annual Kids’ Bike Races at the award-winning northern Wisconsin speedplant. Youngsters are encouraged to bring their bikes to compete on the track in four different age groups – ages 2-4, ages 5-7, ages 8-10, and ages 11-12 – for a chance to win prizes and more.

In addition, the Raceway will offer its newest division a chance at a little extra money when it hosts its first-ever “Hornet Stinger” special. WISSOTA Hornets – the track’s new entry-level four-cylinder class – will be racing for an enhanced purse that includes a $300 paycheck to the winner of that division’s feature.

The World of Outlaws Late Model Series invaded Ashland for the first time in that national tour’s history on Tuesday night, July 9, and by all accounts the event was a success. A huge crowd saw New Berlin, IL’s Brandon Sheppard, the Series points leader, lead all 50 laps of the inaugural “Badgerland 50 Outlaw Challenge,” presented by Red’s Auto of Ironwood, MI, and edge Shane Clanton of Zebulon, GA, to take home $10,000 – by far the largest check ever awarded to a competitor in the ABC Raceway’s 55-year history.

Twenty-five Late Model drivers from ten different states and Canada were on hand to compete for the big purse offered on Tuesday, and most all of the touring drivers and Series officials conveyed to Raceway representatives after the show how impressed they were with the quality of the facility, the racing surface, the staff’s professionalism, and the beauty and hospitality of the Chequamegon Bay area in general. Talks have already begun to attempt to bring dirt-track stock car racing’s premier national touring series back to ABC in 2020.

It was also announced today that the WISSOTA Super Stock feature, which was stopped Tuesday night by rain before the race’s mid-point, has been rescheduled to be completed on Saturday, August 3. The Super Stocks will not be in action at ABC this Saturday.

In a return to the Raceway’s traditional night of action, four of the five other regular weekly divisions – the WISSOTA-sanctioned Modifieds, Midwest Mods and Pure Stocks, and the track’s own Six-Cylinders – will join the Hornets in action. Hot laps will start at 6:15, while the heat races are slated to start at 7 pm. “Race Night” will air on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, with up-to-date track news and weather updates every 15-20 minutes from 4:30-6 pm; coverage will also stream on www.wbszfm.com and on the free Heartland Communications Group radio app.

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.

The ABC Raceway will get back into its traditional Saturday night routine on July 13, with the popular kids’ bike races to be presented by Chicago Iron & Supply of Ashland. In addition, the Raceway will host its first-ever “Stinger” special for the WISSOTA Hornets, offering an enhanced purse with a $300 winner’s check for that night’s feature.

Hot laps will start at 6:15, and the first green flag of the night is set to fly at 7 pm. “Race Night” will air on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, from 4:30 until 6 pm with track news and weather information leading up to the race program.

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

July 9th WoOLMS Results

Article from World of Outlaws Late Model Series Click Here.

Sheppard Makes History as First-Ever WoOLMS Winner at ABC Raceway

by Nick Gima

Ashland, WI, July 9 – Brandon Sheppard of New Berlin, IL, started on the pole and led wire-to-wire to win the inaugural “Badgerland 50 Outlaw Challenge” World of Outlaws Morton Buildings Late Model Series feature, presented by Red’s Auto of Ironwood, MI, at the ABC Raceway on Tuesday night.

The WoOLMS national touring series, which features high-powered versions of the popular Late Model style of short-track dirt race cars, drew the top ten drivers in its championship points standings leading into the event. They were joined by 15 WISSOTA and Dirt King Late Model Series drivers to compete for a track-record $10,000 winner’s check, with each of the 25 entrants taking home a minimum of $1,000 just for starting the 50-lap A-main.

Sheppard, the Series’ points leader heading into Tuesday’s show, beat Ricky Weiss to the front and established a blistering pace, posting the fastest lap of the event early with a 14.881-second (90.720 mph) tour of the sticky three-eighths-mile red-clay oval on lap 7. The battles behind Sheppard, Weiss and Shane Clanton were ferocious, as Jimmy Mars, Cade Dillard, Nick Anvelink and Darrell Lanigan ran in close formation while debating fourth through seventh.

By lap 9 Sheppard was already closing on the backmarkers, which allowed Weiss to quickly eliminate what was a nearly-two-second lead gap. Sheppard made a thrilling thread-the-needle move between Buddy Hanestad and Mark Rose on lap 12 to put those two a lap in arrears and regain a little of that lead margin, while Weiss needed another lap or so to get by the two slower cars.

On lap 18, just as Sheppard was regaining his rhythm and drawing away from Weiss and the rest of the field, a light rain that had been threatening all evening long finally began to fall, halting the festivities. The sprinkles let up within a few short minutes and the field was realigned quickly for a restart, but as the green flag was dropped Lanigan’s car – running seventh at the time – snapped loose and charged through the infield grass inside of turns 1 and 2, with a suspension issue as the culprit. The number-two man in WoOLMS points stopped his car on the inside edge of the back stretch, drawing out the race’s second yellow flag.

A four-car pile-up at the back half of the field just as the green lights came on again stalled the proceedings once more, and then the precipitation began again. However, the rain was light enough that track prep crews quickly brought out trucks to run in the track, and after just 32 minutes the field was set to take the green flag again, in the hope of getting through lap 25 in order to make the race official.

The weather held off and the final 32 laps clicked off without further delay. Sheppard ran away again, while Weiss battled with Clanton for four laps before finally surrendering second on lap 23.

By lap 27 Sheppard was dealing with backmarkers again, which allowed Clanton to draw near. The race leader expertly sliced through, but Clanton patiently clawed his way to Sheppard’s back bumper until he was within two-thirds of a second with just 12 laps left.

With eight laps remaining Clanton got as close as he could – less than a car-length – but Sheppard ran the final laps mostly stress-free for his Series-leading 12th win of the season on the tour, adding to a campaign bound for the WoOLMS record books. Weiss and Mars swapped third place on several occasions over the remaining 15 laps before Weiss settled things for good on lap 47, and Cade Dillard rounded out the top five.

Sheppard thanked his car owners, crew and sponsors from Victory Lane after the landmark win, stating, “This car is a lot of fun to drive … this is a team effort.” He also made a point to thank the fans on hand as well as the track prep crew for hustling out to pack the track in after the rain.

The event was the 660th feature held in the history of the World of Outlaws Late Model Series, with the ABC Raceway representing the 194th different racing facility that has hosted a WoOLMS event, dating back to the Series’ inaugural season of 1978.

Earlier in the evening the WoOLMS drivers took to the track for two-car timed qualifying. Mars, a six-time Red Clay Classic champion at ABC, set a new track record for stock-bodied racers with a single-lap time of 14.398 seconds (93.828 mph) – nearly 1.1 seconds quicker and over six-and-a-half miles per hour faster than Nick Anvelink’s previous track record (15.480 secs; 87.209 mph) set during the WISSOTA Late Model feature at the Red Clay Classic in October 2016.

In fact, 18 of the 24 WoOLMS drivers who made qualifying runs posted lap times better than Anvelink’s mark.

Clinton Day posted a $200 bonus for the fastest timed lap in the WoOLMS feature, which was awarded to Sheppard. In addition, Luger Trucking of Oxford posted long-haul bonuses to Blake Spencer (WoOLMS), who towed over 1,500 miles from his home in Florida to compete at ABC, as well as to Travis Budisalovich (WISSOTA) and Anvelink (Dirt King Series).

Jake Redetzke took the top prize in the WISSOTA Late Model top finisher challenge, complements of Troy Powers & Associates, with Ron Hanestad and Jeff Massingill also claiming bonuses from that program. And Anvelink and Rose were awarded similar top-finisher bonuses in the Dirt Kings Series category.

Twenty-two WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds and 20 Super Stocks were on hand to add to the program for the huge crowd on hand on this sweltering mid-Summer night, but only the Mid-Mods were able to officially record a completed feature, as once again the rains came and spoiled the fun. Outlaw Wraps & Apparel of Ashland provided a boost to the Mid-Mod purse on this night, with the winner taking home $500.

George Dalbeck started alongside visiting Brandon Jensen on the front row of the Midwest Mod feature, which was scheduled for 20 laps, and the 2011 track and Red Clay Classic champion from Wakefield, MI, shot away to an over-two-second advantage on the field within a mere four laps. Calvin Iverson followed in Dalbeck’s tire tracks to get around Jensen for second, with Jimmy Latvala close behind during the race’s early stages.

Karl Kolek’s spin brought the field back to Dalbeck’s rear bumper on lap 4, but he ran away again to a big lead after the restart, while Latvala looked stout in taking second away from Iverson. Jensen made up for his earlier loss of ground by overtaking Iverson a couple of laps later, and he improved on that standing when he took advantage of the next restart.

That came as a result of David Simpson’s stalled ride in turn 2 on lap 7. On that re-do, Jensen slipped by Latvala to take second, with Shane Halopka in tow for third. At this point, 12th-starting Brandon Copp began a strong trek toward the front, getting by Latvala for fourth on lap 9 and Halopka for third on lap 10.

Dalbeck did not pull away to a big advantage on Jensen as he had done earlier in the run, and after a lap 14 restart for Ross Fuhrman’s looped ride his lead was no more than a car-length, but when the rains returned track officials called the race complete, giving Dalbeck his fourth win of the season at ABC and 20th of his career. Jensen, Copp, Latvala and Halopka filled out the top five in close formation.

Dalbeck also set the fastest lap of the race at 17.217 seconds (78.411 mph). Copp’s late drive through the field earned him a “hard charger” bonus, courtesy of Anderson Pure Maple Syrup.

A stellar field of Super Stocks attempted to start its 20-lap main event, but Mother Nature’s final outburst was the strongest of the night, forcing the cancellation of the remainder of the show and a postponement of that division’s feature until a future date, which will be announced soon.

The ABC Raceway will get back into its traditional Saturday night routine on July 13, with the popular kids’ bike races to be presented by Chicago Iron & Supply of Ashland. In addition, the Raceway will host its first-ever “Stinger” special for the WISSOTA Hornets, offering an enhanced purse with a $300 winner’s check for that night’s feature.

Hot laps will start at 6:15, and the first green flag of the night is set to fly at 7 pm. “Race Night” will air on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, from 4:30 until 6 pm with track news and weather information leading up to the race program.

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

World of Outlaws Late Models

Feature: 1-10: Brandon Sheppard, New Berlin, IL; Shane Clanton, Zebulon, GA; Ricky Weiss, Headingly, MB; Jimmy Mars, Menomonie; Cade Dillard, Robeline, LA; Chase Junghans, Manhattan, KS; Brent Larson, Lake Elmo, MN; Nick Anvelink, Bonduel; Dennis Erb, Carpentersville, IL; Jake Redetzke, Eau Claire.

11-20: Blake Spencer, St Augustine, FL; Rick Hanestad, Boyceville; Darrell Lanigan, Union, KY; Boom Briggs, Bear Lake, PA; Donny Schatz, Fargo, ND; Pat Doar, New Richmond; Mark Rose, Dorchester; Jeff Massingill, Keewatin, MN; Kevin Carlson, Hermantown, MN; Steve Laursen, Cumberland.

21-25: John Kaanta, Elk Mound; Kevin Eder, Ashland; Travis Budisalovich, Minneapolis, MN; Buddy Hanestad, Boyceville; Tim McMann, Duluth, MN.

Hard Charger: Junghans.

Qualifying: Mars, 14.388 secs, 93.828 mph (NTR).

Heat 1: Clanton; Mars; Larson; Schatz; R Hanestad; Junghans; Kaanta; Eder; McMann.

Heat 2: Weiss; Anvelink; Lanigan; Spencer; Redetzke; Laursen; B Hanestad; Budisalovich.

Heat 3: Sheppard; Dillard; Doar; Erb; Briggs; Massingill; Rose; Carlson.

WISSOTA Super Stocks

Feature: rained out; ppd TBA.

Heat 1: Curt Myers, Cameron; Eric Olson, Ladysmith; Kevin Burdick, Proctor, MN; Patrick Beeksma, Ironwood, MI; Matt Deragon, Ashland; Andy Grymala, Superior; Willie Johnsen Jr, Superior; DJ Keeler, Superior; Greg Kuklinski, Ironwood, MI; David Elliott, Minocqua.

Heat 2: Nick Oreskovich, Mason; Dave Flynn, Superior; Cory Casari, Montreal; Scott Lawrence, Superior; Kyle Copp, Brule; Andrew Mackey, Roseville, MN; Aaron Mashlan, Ashland; Rita Anderson, South Range; Shawn McFadden Jr, Ashland; Don Muzzy, Ironwood, MI.

WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: George Dalbeck, Wakefield, MI; Brandon Jensen, Ellsworth; Brandon Copp, Brule; Jimmy Latvala, Solon Springs; Shane Halopka, Greenwood; Calvin Iverson, Eleva; Michael Blevins; Hibbing, MN; Marcus Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; Gunner Peterson, South Range; Ross Fuhrman, Ashland.

11-20: Justin Weinberger, Park Falls; David Simpson, Thunder Bay, ON; Steve Altman, Mercer; Mark Thomas, Menomonie; Kyle Schell, Lisbon, ND; Clay Passuello, Ironwood, MI; Bill Muhlig, Bessemer, MI; Wayne Stricker, Highbridge; Jonny Marsh, Rice Lake; Karl Kolek, Menomonie.

21; Ryan Barningham, Bayfield.

Heat 1: Dalbeck; Altman; Kolek; Peterson; Schell; Blevins; Thomas; Jared Stricker, Highbridge.

Heat 2: Jensen; Halopka; Dunbar; W Stricker; Weinberger; Barningham; Muhlig.

Heat 3: Iverson; Simpson; Latvala; Copp; Passuello; Fuhrman; Marsh.

June 28th results

ABC Race of Champions Qualifiers to Visitors Cain, Burdick, Halopka

by Nick Gima

Ashland, WI, June 28 – The best car count of the 2019 season included many infrequent and first-time visiting racers to the ABC Raceway for a rare Friday-night race program, highlighted by a lot of action and more than a bit of drama during its Afco Shocks Race of Champions qualifiers.

Dave Cain of Corcoran, MN; Kevin Burdick of Proctor, MN; and Shane Halopka of Greenwood all visited the northern Wisconsin red-clay oval for the first time this season, and each came away with his respective RoC qualifier feature win, as part of a six-division, 20-race program presented by the Bad River Lodge, Casino and Convention Center of Odanah. Each will receive a berth in the prestigious Afco Shocks Race of Champions feature for his respective division during the WISSOTA 100 weekend of racing at the I-94 Speedway in Fergus Falls, MN, in mid-September.

Including these three, no fewer than ten of the 98 entries on this night were former Red Clay Classic champions. Additionally, Randy Graham of Trego took two feature wins on this night, and Paul George of Princeton, MN, collected his first-ever A-main win here.

Cain’s win came in a WISSOTA Modified feature that was a trying one on a couple of fronts. The usually smooth, fast, clean-running “big Mods” had trouble keeping their race under green on this night, as no fewer than seven caution flags slowed the pace, including one for a wreck that took nearly ten minutes to clean up. Then the drama continued in the post-race inspection area after the checkered flag was thrown.

Polestarter Ashley Anderson patiently set the pace throughout the entire 20-lap run, overcoming challenges at every restart and drawing away whenever the race stayed green for more than a couple of laps. Anderson outran Cody Carlson after each of two first-lap restarts, then fended off a determined Mike Anderson, as well as Cain and others, throughout the rest of the run.

Once the race reached halfway, the chaos seemed to end and the field provided some very entertaining action – particularly up front, where, at various times, Kevin Eder, Michael Truscott and Mike Anderson challenged Ashley Anderson while battling each other. Finally, Cain used a three-wide pass of Truscott and Mike Anderson to claim second with five laps remaining, and he closed to within three-tenths of a second on Ashley Anderson at the finish, with Mike Anderson pulling alongside of him.

During the post-race weigh-in, Ashley Anderson’s car was found to be just a few pounds under the division’s minimum weight rule for his engine type, passing the win to Cain. Truscott moved up to third in the final rundown, well back of the leaders but comfortably ahead of Eder and 13th-starting Jeff Spacek.

A significant on-track ruling was key in Burdick’s WISSOTA Super Stock feature win here. Front-row starter Curt Myers took off to the early advantage in the 20-lap A-main, while Burdick – who started directly behind South Dakota visitor and polesitter Kip Myers – needed a couple of laps to get by Shawn McFadden Jr in order to claim second.

Once in line, the lead pair set off to decide the outcome in what was shaping up to be a potential all-time classic battle. Over a 17-lap green-flag run, Burdick was never more than a few feet behind leader Myers, challenging with low-side dives while Myers fought back with every trick he knew. By mid-race the lead duo had closed on slower backmarkers, forcing both Myers and Burdick to find alternate routes through traffic while dueling for the lead.

It was in lapped traffic when Myers, running a low line, needed to dive even lower than he wanted to clear the slower Aaron Mashlan, with Burdick gaining a run and drawing alongside Myers’ passenger-side door going into turn 3. Myers’s line caused him to bump one of the large tractor tires that mark the inside line of the corners, which bounced it onto the racing surface. The caution flag came out for the stray tire, and by track rule Myers was penalized to the tail of the field for causing the situation. Rather than continuing from the back, Myers exited the event, leaving the race in Burdick’s hands.

Over the final three laps Burdick held off threats from Dave Flynn, then Nick Oreskovich, to claim his fourth career feature win here. Oreskovich, Flynn, and visitors Tommy Richards and Tristan LaBarge completed the top five.

Patience was the key to Halopka’s win in the 20-lap WISSOTA Midwest Modified headliner, as he led every lap from the pole but had to persevere through three early yellow-flag slowdowns.

After a lap 3 crunch that took out points leader George Dalbeck, Halopka stayed ahead of a great dogfight between Colin Chaschuk and Michael Blevins for second. Chaschuk eventually won out and looked to be a legitimate threat to the two-time RCC champ’s lead, but during a lap 7 stoppage Chaschuk had to leave the track to change a left-front tire.

A mid-pack scramble left debris and Justin Weinberger’s stalled car on the track to stop the race a final time, but over those final 13 non-stop laps Halopka built on his lead over Blevins, eventually pushing it to 2.7 seconds at the checkers. Blevins survived a mad scramble for second by edging ahead of Tommy Richards and Clay Passuello, while David Simpson ran off the final half-dozen laps in a comfortable, uncontested fifth.

The first half of Graham’s second “double-dip” of the season came in the ABC Six-Cylinder 15-lap feature. Bubba Anderson lead the initial laps, including after caution flags thrown for a couple of Jake Nevala spins, but Graham went on the offensive after that, passing both Jonathan Popp and Forrest Schultz to take third on lap 3, then working his way around Scott Ovaska for second a circuit later.

Graham pressured Anderson into a bobble in turn 2 on lap 6, and he took advantage with a low-side pass for the lead. From there Graham sped off to a 3.9-second buffer over Ovaska, Schultz, Anderson and Popp.

Graham won the second of his wins on the night in the very next race, the non-stop 12-lap WISSOTA Pure Stock main event, but not in a manner that he would have preferred. James Vendela looked strong throughout the run, taking the lead away from Jeff Christman in the first lap and then following a smooth, mid-lane path around the three-eighths-mile oval while battles commenced behind him.

Graham picked his way through the heavy traffic from his fourth-row start before driving around Aaron Bernick for second on lap 3. Within a couple more laps he had reeled in the leader and stayed within a car-length, occasionally looking to the low groove for some traction off the corners while Vendela took to a slightly higher lane.

Vendela edged Graham by a mere .176 seconds for what seemed to be his second career feature win here – until a long post-race technical inspection revealed a safety infraction on his car. The decision brought Graham’s win total to six here this season (three each in the Pure Stocks and Sixes), while Weinberger, a smoking Cory Jorgensen, Bernick and Don Livingston filled out the top five.

Another first-time feature winner was crowned at ABC in the WISSOTA Hornets class, with George earning the honors. After a first-lap restart for Neil Dees’ spun and stalled ride, the ten-lap feature clicked off without further interruption, with George working his way around Derek Dunbar for the lead right away. Visiting Derek Ament followed George past Dunbar a lap later, and the running order held steady for a while before Hunter McDougall made some noise with a couple laps remaining, taking third from Dunbar on lap 8 and then second from Ament under the white flag.

George’s win makes him the fifth different winner in five Hornet features at Ashland this year, and the sixth different winner when including last summer’s exhibition visit by the division. McDougall, Ament and Dunbar finished a tight nose-to-tail second through fourth, while Austin Gibson came home fifth.

Several inches of rain fell on the Chequamegon Bay area during the 36 hours before race time, resulting in a stickier track surface – and significantly faster lap times – than in recent weeks. Fast-lap bonuses in each of the features went to Mike Anderson in the Mods (16.615 seconds; 81.252 mph), Burdick in the Supers (17.136; 78.782), Halopka in the Mid-Mods (17.136; 78.731), Graham in the Sixes (18.588; 72.628), and Jorgensen in the Pure Stocks (19.276; 70.035).

In an unusual schedule twist, the ABC Raceway will take a couple of Saturday nights off (June 29 and July 6) to prepare for the first-ever visit by the Morton Buildings World of Outlaws Late Model Series to the award-winning red-clay oval on Tuesday, July 9. The “Red’s Auto Badgerland 50 Outlaw Challenge” will offer the winner of the night’s spotlight event a track-record $10,000 payoff, while starters of the 50-lap feature will earn a minimum of $1,000.

The WISSOTA Super Stocks and Midwest Mods will also race that night for enhanced purses as part of what is expected to be one of the biggest race programs ever held in Raceway history.

More information regarding the event will be released over the next few days. The grandstands will open at 4 pm on that Tuesday, hot laps will start at 6, and the first green flag of the night is set to fly at 7 pm. Live updates, WoO Series driver interviews, and more are slated to air on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and WIMI, 99.7 FM, throughout the Monday and Tuesday leading up to the race program.

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: Dave Cain, Corcoran, MN; Mike Anderson, Jim Falls; Michael Truscott, Chippewa Falls; Kevin Eder, Ashland; Jeff Spacek, Phillips; Steve Stuart, Ashland; Steve Lavasseur, River Falls; Neil Balduc, Bessemer, MI; Tyler Luger, Oxford; Pat Cook, Washburn.

11-20: Cole Spacek, Phillips; Paul Suzik, Ironwood, MI; Dan Kingsley, Superior; Nick Wranek, Harrisburg, SD; Cody Carlson, Superior; Bill Yonke, Thief River Falls, MN; Todd Gehl, Solon Springs; Al Uotinen, Superior; Jared Loos, Loyal; Bill Byholm, Glidden.

21: Paul Niznik, Medford.

Heat 1: Ashley Anderson, Elk Mound; M Anderson; Luger; Gehl; J Spacek; Kingsley; Loos; Yonke.

Heat 2: Eder; Truscott; Suzik; Cook; Uotinen; Balduc; C Spacek.

Heat 3: Carlson; Cain; Byholm; Stuart; Lavasseur; Wranek; Niznik.

WISSOTA Super Stocks

Feature: 1-10: Kevin Burdick, Proctor, MN; Nick Oreskovich, Mason; Dave Flynn, Superior; Tommy Richards, Mondovi; Tristan LaBarge, Kelly Lake, MN; Shawn McFadden, Ashland; Matt Deragon, Ashland; Scott Lawrence, Superior; Patrick Beeksma, Ironwood, MI; Kip Myers, Ethan, SD.

11-20: Don Muzzy, Ironwood, MI; Kyle Copp, Brule; Andy Grymala, Superior; Aaron Mashlan, Ashland; Andrew Mackey, Roseville, MN; Jon Hammitt, Cloquet, MN; Rita Anderson, South Range; Greg Kuklinski, Ironwood, MI; Curt Myers, Cameron; Matt Hammitt, Cloquet, MN.

21: Cory Casari, Montreal.

Heat 1: Oreskovich; Burdick; Casari; Lawrence; Richards; Mackey; J Hammitt.

Heat 2: C Myers; Grymala; Flynn; LaBarge; Beeksma; Muzzy; Copp.

Heat 3: K Myers; Deragon; McFadden; Mashlan; M Hammitt; Anderson; Kuklinski.

WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: Shane Halopka, Greenwood; Michael Blevins, Hibbing, MN; Tommy Richards, Mondovi; Clay Passuello, Ironwood, MI; David Simpson, Thunder Bay, ON; Brandon Copp, Brule; Jimmy Latvala, Solon Springs; Jesse Aho, Toivola, MI; George Truscott, Greenland, MI; Jared Stricker, Highbridge.

11-20: Colin Chaschuk, Neebing, ON; Ross Fuhrman, Ashland; Kevin Monteith, Rosslyn, ON; Ryan Barningham, Bayfield; Bryan Lund, Ashland; Steve Altman, Mercer; Justin Weinberger, Park Falls; Marcus Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; Gunner Peterson, South Range; George Dalbeck, Wakefield, MI.

Heat 1: Halopka; Passuello; Chaschuk; Aho; Fuhrman; Diamond Bressette, Spooner; Dalton Mains, Foxboro; Wayne Stricker, Highbridge.

Heat 2: Blevins; Copp; Truscott; Dunbar; Weinberger; Monteith; J Stricker; Lund.

Heat 3: Simpson; Richards; Dalbeck; Latvala; Peterson; Barningham; Altman.

ABC Six-Cylinders

Feature: 1-9: Randy Graham, Trego; Scott Ovaska, Marengo; Forrest Schultz, Ashland; Bubba Anderson, Trego; Jonathan Popp, Iron River; Matt Deragon, Ashland; DeJay Jarecki, Ashland; Jake Nevala, Ashland; Adam Traaholt, Ashland.

Heat: Graham; Ovaska; Anderson; Jarecki; Schultz; Popp; Deragon; Nevala; Traaholt.

WISSOTA Pure Stocks

Feature: 1-10: Randy Graham, Trego; Justin Weinberger, Park Falls; Cory Jorgensen, Duluth, MN; Aaron Bernick, Duluth, MN; Don Livingston, Washburn; Jeff Christman, South Range; Devin Fries, Phillips; Mikey Blevins, Hibbing, MN; Brandle Pupp, Highbridge; Cole Richards, Mondovi.

11-12: Tyler Keup, Superior; Jason Simonson, Poplar.

Heat 1: James Vendela, South Range; Livingston; Bernick; Christman; Richards; Jorgensen; Keup.

Heat 2: Graham; Weinberger; Blevins; Fries; Pupp; Simonson.

WISSOTA Hornets

Feature: 1-9: Paul George, Princeton, MN; Hunter McDougall, Duluth, MN; Derek Ament, Barnum, MN; Derek Dunbar, Iron River; Austin Gibson, Springbrook; Mitch Kieber, Ironwood, MI; Tate Niehaus, Alborn, MN; Brad Currier, Alborn, MN; Neil Dees, Hurley.

Heat 1: George; Gibson; Jason Ronning, Ashland; Dees; Kieber.

Heat 2: McDougall; Ament; Niehaus; Dunbar; Currier.

 

Kids Club June 28th

ABC Raceway will be running it’s program on Friday this week instead of Saturday. It’s also the Race of Champions qualifier! The weather looks good so we hope to see you all on Friday!!

Check out the Wissota website for more information on the Race of Champions, Wissota 100, and where everyone is sitting in national points! Points standings for Ashland can be found on the ABC Raceway website! Since we didn’t do sign ups, let us know where your favorite drivers are sitting!!

Races Friday June 28th

ABC Raceway to Offer Friday Night Action

by Nick Gima
Ashland, WI, June 26 – A rather unusual part of the ABC Raceway’s 2019 schedule starts on this Friday – not Saturday – night.
The Bad River Lodge, Casino & Convention Center of Odanah will present the Raceway’s Afco Shocks Race of Champions qualifier features for the WISSOTA Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds. The winners of Friday’s features in each of these divisions will receive invitations to compete in each division’s Afco Shocks Race of Champions features to be held as part of this year’s WISSOTA 100 weekend on September 12 & 13 at the I-94 Speedway in Fergus Falls, MN.
Each WISSOTA-sanctioned track schedules a Race of Champions qualifier night with the hopes that its representatives can bring home the prestigious win.
The quirk in the schedule is that the Ashland track – which has traditionally hosted its weekly racing programs on Saturday nights for at least the last 40 of its 55 summers of operation – does not have a race show scheduled for either of the next two Saturdays. After Friday’s program, the track’s all-volunteer staff will prepare the facility for its first-ever visit by the Morton Buildings World of Outlaws Late Model Series national event, the “Red’s Auto Badgerland 50 Outlaw Challenge” presented by Red’s Auto of Ironwood, MI, on Tuesday, July 9.
The WISSOTA Pure Stocks and Hornets and the ABC Six-Cylinders will join the other divisions in action on Friday. Feature winners from this past Saturday’s program included Kevin Eder of Ashland in the Modifieds; Ironwood’s Don Muzzy in the Super Stocks; George Dalbeck of Wakefield, MI, in the Mid-Mods for the third time here this season; Bubba Anderson of Trego in the Sixes; Justin Weinberger of Park Falls for the second time this summer in the Pure Stocks; and Tate Niehaus of Alborn, MN, who won his first-ever Hornet feature.
Friday’s program will start with hot laps at 6:15, while the heat races will “go green” at 7 pm.
“Race Night” will air on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, with up-to-date track news and weather updates every 15-20 minutes from 4:30-6 pm; coverage will also stream on www.wbszfm.com and on the free Heartland Communications Group radio app.
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.

June 22nd Results

Eder, Muzzy, Dalbeck, Anderson, Weinberger, Niehaus Collect Hall of Fame Night Wins at ABC

by Nick Gima

Ashland, WI, June 22 – On a night in which the ABC Raceway honored ten new inductees into its Hall of Fame, six drivers collected a little fame of their own with feature wins on Saturday night.

Zar’s Bar & Banquet Hall of Ashland presented the Raceway’s sixth Hall of Fame Induction Ceremonies program at the award-winning northern Wisconsin speedplant, with the introduction of the Class of 2019 during intermission of the race program.

Honorary inductees included long-time supporter Lulich Implement and former track reporter and photographer Bob Wedlund. The four drivers enshrined were former Six-Cylinder champs Chuck Hawkinson and Art Hyde; long-time competitor Don Roseen (posthumously), and successful Modified racer Dean Yrjanainen. Also added were former flagman Tom Koleski and his mother, the late Martha Koleski, who was a track treasurer; former track announcer Pete Miller (posthumously); local business owner Ray Parent (posthumously); and current track announcer, historian and publicist Nick Gima in the Volunteers & Contributors category.

The on-track action was mostly fast-paced and action-filled, with 74 entries completing the 17-race program in about two-and-a-half hours, not including the intermission ceremonies. Of the feature winners, one was a first-time-ever winner, one continued his strong start to the season, two were former track champions, and two had not been to ABC’s Victory Lane in at least a couple of seasons.

Defending track champ Kevin Eder of Ashland looked to be well on his way to dominating the WISSOTA Modified 20-lap headliner, grabbing the lead after a lap 2 restart and running away to a lead of over four seconds. But another yellow flag just past halfway brought the field back to his bumper, and he had to fend off heavy pressure the rest of the way for his first win of the season here.

Eder started four rows back of the race’s all-rookie front row of Dan Kingsley and Paul Suzik, who ran one-two for the first couple of laps after Steve Stuart’s spin in the initial corner. But over those first two laps Eder had already weaved through to third and was applying heavy pressure when a four-car entanglement brought about the lap 2 stoppage. Eder slipped low to pass Kingsley for the lead once the green lights came on again, and over the next ten laps he would not be challenged.

That all changed on lap 12, when three cars got together in turn 2. Eder restarted with Steve Lavasseur and Neil Balduc directly behind him, and both provided strong challenges the rest of the way while swapping second place among themselves. After a lap 14 delay for a two-car spin, Eder held on to a tight margin of victory, just ahead of Balduc, while Lavasseur was not far back. A charging Pat Cook came from his seventh-place alignment on the lap 14 restart to claim fourth, just feet ahead of Al Uotinen.

For Don Muzzy of Ironwood, MI, his first WISSOTA Super Stock feature win since June 2016 couldn’t have been much sweeter. After a brutal crash at Rice Lake Speedway earlier this spring, Muzzy bought a chassis from former Red Clay Classic champ Shane Kisling and proved that it was a force on the track, running strong ever since his first night in the car and winning the feature here on his wife Heather’s birthday.

Muzzy started on the outside of the front row and lead nearly every lap, beginning with an eventual lead of just over a second on polestarter Kyle Copp over the first four laps before Patrick Beeksma took over second. Aaron Mashlan’s stalled ride on lap 6 slowed the pace and closed the field to Muzzy’s trunklid, and on the restart defending track champ Nick Oreskovich used an inside move to make a four-wide pass for second and put the heat on Muzzy.

By lap 8 the lead pair were running side-by-side, and on lap 9 Oreskovich was scored as the leader by less than five one-hundredths of a second. But Muzzy charged back, working the higher groove to maintain his momentum, and edged ahead of Oreskovich just a couple of laps later. On lap 13 rookie Andrew Mackey looped his ride, bunching up the field again, but Muzzy held on for the remaining seven laps for his third career feature win here and second in the Supers. Cory Casari muscled his way past Oreskovich for second late in the run, and Dave Flynn was close behind in fourth, with Copp completing the top five.

George Dalbeck of Wakefield, MI, took advantage of a gift and turned it into his third WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature win of the season here. The gift came courtesy of Brandon Copp, who looked like a runaway winner of the event early on.

Copp started on the outside of the front row and, after a two-car tangle on the initial start, beat polestarter Steve Altman and everyone else out of the first turns and ran off to a huge lead. Within seven laps Copp had built a margin of over four seconds, and on lap 9 of the 20 scheduled laps he was already contending with a backmarker.

Unfortunately for the leader, he had to check up hard when he closed too quickly on the slower car, forcing Copp to spin to avoid contact. That put Gunner Peterson at the front for the restart, with the seventh-starting Dalbeck behind his left shoulder.

Dalbeck immediately looked to the low groove for a chance at the lead, and within a lap after the restart he had cleared the high-side-running Peterson. Craig Lofdahl’s smoking ride came to a stop on the front straight a lap later, but from the ensuing restart on Dalbeck drove away to nearly-two-second margin of victory. David Simpson grabbed second from Peterson a lap after the last restart and held it to the end, and Marcus Dunbar wrestled third away from Peterson late in the run, with Wayne Stricker completing the top five.

The Six-Cylinder feature saw an early dramatic twist when points leader Randy Graham and third-in-points Matt Deragon both dropped out of the event after contact and damage. That gave Bubba Anderson of Trego a chance to capture his first feature win here since May 2017, although it was not without a battle.

Anderson, who started outside on the front row, grabbed the early lead from polestarter Joshua Saunders and stayed just in front of the close-quarters racing for second on back. That tight cluster generated heavy contact on lap 2, with Graham getting sideways in front of the pack and scraping the front-straight wall, and Deragon’s car receiving significant front-end damage and coasting to a stop.

With both top contenders in the pits, Anderson had his hands full with Jake Nevala after the restart. Nevala dove inside to swipe the lead on lap 3, but Anderson battled back and worked the low side to pull even with the leader and eventually regain the point on lap 6. Nevala stayed on Anderson’s bumper and tried several times to overtake him, but Anderson held on for a winning margin of just over half a second. Forrest Schultz took third away from DeJay Jarecki during the closing laps, and Jonathan Popp came home in fifth.

Despite a small showing in WISSOTA Pure Stock numbers, Justin Weinberger of Park Falls and Graham provided some excitement in their feature, with Weinberger pulling off his second win of the season.

The ten-lapper went non-stop, with Weinberger getting by front-row starters Jason Simonson and Brandle Pupp within one lap for the lead. After the second circuit Graham had gained second, and the pair ran away from the rest of the field to decide the outcome. Graham stayed within a car-length or so for the entire run, but Weinberger ran a clean, strong line and led by just less than a second at the checkers.

Pupp slipped by Don Livingston for third-place money, and Simonson came home fifth.

The WISSOTA Hornets also ran off their ten-lap feature non-stop, and Tate Niehaus of Alborn, MN, became the division’s fourth different winner in as many shows this season.

Polesitter Paul Ripley fended off challenges from Niehaus and Derek Dunbar for the first lap, but Niehaus went around Ripley on the high side and grabbed the lead for good on lap 2. Paul George replaced Dunbar in third soon thereafter, and the tight-knit lead trio pulled away from the pack.

George and Ripley swapped second place behind Niehaus for several laps until George took over the position for good on lap 7, but Niehaus kept his challengers at bay for his landmark win, just a car-length or so ahead of George and Ripley. Dunbar held firmly to fourth, with Dayna Marken a few lengths back in fifth.

The best single-lap times in the features were posted by Uotinen in the Mods (17.609 seconds; 76.665 mph), Casari in the Supers (18.100; 74.586), Copp in the Mid-Mods (17.721; 76.181), and Graham in both the Sixes (19.293; 69.974) and Pure Stocks (19.859; 67.979).

Eder claimed the fastest-lap bonus in his feature with a single-lap time of 18.027 seconds (74.888 mph). Others gaining the same bonus were Muzzy in the Supers (18.329; 73.654), Copp in the Mid-Mods (17.352; 77.801), Nevala in the Sixes (19.707; 68.504), and Weinberger in the Pure Stocks (19.891; 67.870).

The ABC Raceway will move its program to Friday this week, hosting its Afco Shocks Race of Champions qualifiers for the WISSOTA-sanctioned divisions on June 28. The winners of the night’s features in the Mods, Supers and Mid-Mods will receive automatic berths in the prestigious Race of Champions features to be held during the WISSOTA 100 weekend at I-94 Speedway in Fergus Falls, MN, on September 10-14.

The grandstands will open at 5 pm, and hot laps will start at 6:15, followed by the first green flag of the night at 7 pm. “Race Night” will air on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, with up-to-date track news and weather updates every 15-20 minutes from 4:30-6 pm; coverage will also stream on www.wbszfm.com and on the free Heartland Communications Group radio app.

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: Kevin Eder, Ashland; Neil Balduc, Bessemer, MI; Steve Lavasseur, River Falls; Pat Cook, Washburn; Al Uotinen, Superior; Jeff Spacek, Phillips; Steve Stuart, Ashland; Todd Gehl, Solon Springs; Paul Niznik, Medford; Paul Suzik, Ironwood, MI.

11-17: Cody Carlson, Superior; Tanner Byholm, Glidden; Jake Hiatt, Mason; Dan Kingsley, Superior; Tyler Luger, Oxford; Donnie Lofdahl, Duluth, MN; Cole Spacek, Phillips.

Heat 1: Eder; Cook; Suzik; Uotinen; Niznik; Gehl; Hiatt; Lofdahl; Luger.

Heat 2: Stuart; Balduc; Lavasseur; Kingsley; C Spacek; Byholm; Carlson; J Spacek.

WISSOTA Super Stocks

Feature: 1-10: Don Muzzy, Ironwood, MI; Cory Casari, Montreal; Nick Oreskovich, Mason; Dave Flynn, Superior; Kyle Copp, Brule; Patrick Beeksma, Ironwood, MI; Matt Deragon, Ashland; Andrew Mackey, Roseville, MN; Shawn McFadden, Ashland; Greg Kuklinski, Ironwood, MI.

11-13: Terran Spacek, Phillips; Rick Randall, Wakefield, MI; Aaron Mashlan, Ashland.

Heat 1: McFadden; Copp; Deragon; Beeksma; Mackey; Mashlan; Randall.

Heat 2: Oreskovich; Muzzy; Spacek; Flynn; Kuklinski; Casari.

WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: George Dalbeck, Wakefield, MI; David Simpson, Thunder Bay, ON; Marcus Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; Gunner Peterson, South Range; Wayne Stricker, Highbridge; Justin Weinberger, Park Falls; Brandon Copp, Brule; Ross Fuhrman, Ashland; Clay Passuello, Ironwood, MI; Dalton Mains, Foxboro.

11-18: Jared Stricker, Highbridge; Jack Rivord, Superior; Bryan Lund, Ashland; Steve Altman, Mercer; Ryan Barningham, Bayfield; Bill Muhlig, Bessemer, MI; Craig Lofdahl, Duluth, MN; Darren Dunbar, Marenisco, MI.

Heat 1: Simpson; Rivord; Peterson; Stricker; Barningham; Weinberger; Passuello; D Dunbar; Lund.

Heat 2: M Dunbar; Copp; Altman; Dalbeck; Fuhrman; Stricker; Lofdahl; Mains; Muhlig.

ABC Six-Cylinders

Feature: 1-9: Bubba Anderson, Trego; Jake Nevala, Ashland; Forrest Schultz, Ashland; Dejay Jarecki, Ashland; Jonathan Popp, Iron River; Josh Saunders, Spooner; Adam Traaholt, Ashland; Randy Graham, Trego; Matt Deragon, Ashland.

Heat 1: Graham; Anderson; Popp; Jarecki.

Heat 2: Schultz; Deragon; Saunders; Nevala; Traaholt.

WISSOTA Pure Stocks

Feature: 1-5: Justin Weinberger, Park Falls; Randy Graham, Trego; Brandle Pupp, Highbridge; Don Livingston, Washburn; Jason Simonson, Poplar.

Heat: Weinberger; Graham; Livingston; Pupp; Simonson.

WISSOTA Hornets

Feature: 1-10: Tate Niehaus, Alborn, MN; Paul George, Princeton, MN; Paul Ripley, Duluth, MN; Derek Dunbar, Iron River; Dayna Marken, Duluth, MN; Mike Brennan, Ashland; Bobby Sheldon, Rhinelander; Mitch Kieber, Ironwood, MI; Austin Gibson, Springbrook; Neil Dees, Hurley.

11: Shawn Young, Stone Lake.

Heat 1: George; Ripley; Dunbar; Niehaus; Brennan; Dees.

Heat 2: Marken; Sheldon; Gibson; Kieber; Young.

June 15th Results

Kids, Causes Benefit from Free Admission Night at ABC Raceway

by Nick Gima

Ashland, WI, June 15 – For many fans at the ABC Raceway on Saturday night, the action on the racetrack may have seemed like just so much icing on what was already a fun-filled cake.

The Raceway hosted its annual free-grandstand-admission night, and a huge crowd showed its appreciation for the offer by turning out on a cool, clear night. On top of that, there were many activities going on at the track that fans could participate in to help support the “Racing for a Reason” campaign, which Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland, in cooperation with the Heartland Communication Group of area radio stations, puts together annually with the ABC Raceway to raise funds for local charitable causes.

Also, Little Caesar’s Pizza of Ashland presented the Kids’ “Meet the Drivers” session prior to green-flag racing, allowing fans of all ages to walk among the 80 race cars entered for the night’s program on the front straightaway, collect autographs and treats from the drivers, and take an up-close look at the cars. And many bikes and other donated prizes would be doled out to the youngsters during the evening.

Oh, and along with all of that, there was a 17-race program that clicked off in a little more than three hours and ended with strong performances, successful returns to Victory Lane, and a little history.

One driver who enjoyed both a strong run and a winning result was Ashland’s Steve Stuart, who took home his 34th career feature win at his home track. Stuart, struggling to get a handle on the brand-new chassis he has purchased for this season, found some solutions after heat-race action on Saturday night, and the result was a rocket-ship of a racer that ran away from the pack in the feature.

Al Uotinen got around polesitter Bill Byholm for the initial lead of the 20-lap WISSOTA Modified A-main, and with no caution flags to slow the pace Uotinen looked to have things well in hand, flying to a 2.5-second lead by the time Stuart took over second from Byholm on lap 8.

But Stuart closed quickly and dove low on Uotinen to take over the lead on lap 13, and from there he sped away to a 2.8-second margin of victory. Uotinen finished a comfortable distance ahead of Kevin Eder for second, and Jeff Spacek overtook Byholm late in the run for fourth.

After a three-car pile-up on the initial start, the 20-lap WISSOTA Super Stock feature ran off without any further delays, which suited Cory Casari just fine. The young Montreal racer grabbed the lead before its mid-point and set a blistering pace the rest of the way to earn his 25th career feature win at Ashland.

Greg Kuklinski and Terran Spacek raced side-by-side for several laps before Spacek established himself out front, but by the time he did, Casari had worked through heavy traffic to reach his trunklid as the runner-up. The pair had distanced themselves from the pack by lap 8, at which point Casari took an outside line to get by for the lead.

Casari wasted no time in pulling away, stretching his lead to almost four-and-a-half seconds by the time the checkers flew. Three-time defending ABC Super Stock champ Nick Oreskovich clawed his way by Spacek over the final few laps to claim second, bringing 11th-starting Matt Deragon, who is off to a great start this season, to third. DJ Keeler completed the top five.

The lead did not seem like the most desirable place to be during the first half of the 20-lap WISSOTA Midwest Modified headliner, but it was a great place to be for young Canadian hotshoe David Simpson over the final ten laps.

Marcus Dunbar held off strong challenges from polestarter Jimmy Latvala and Brandon Copp over the first four laps of the run, but he spun himself out on lap 4, basically taking himself out of contention. Copp restarted out front and felt immediate pressure from George Dalbeck, who had been dominant in winning the first two Mid-Mod features of the season here, and Copp maintained his advantage through a lap 6 restart for a spun Darren Dunbar.

One lap after the restart, Dalbeck applied too much pressure and spun Copp to bring out another caution flag, sending Dalbeck to the back. But perhaps the spin caused damage to Copp’s car, as when the race reached its mid-point the leader slowed and pulled into the infield grass, his car done for the night. Simpson, who was next in line, assumed the lead and, despite one more stoppage for a two-car get-together, stayed there for the duration, eventually building a 1.47-second winning margin.

A determined Wayne Stricker, racing for the first night this season, stayed in the top-five throughout the run and claimed second, and Dalbeck climbed all the way back to third. Latvala and Gunner Peterson completed the top five.

Simpson told fans during his interview in Victory Lane after his fourth career feature win here that he came down from his hometown of Thunder Bay, ON, for a weekend of racing in the Northland with a skeleton crew – just himself and his girlfriend – so the win was a huge relief.

Three-time and 2018 ABC Six-Cylinder champ Tiffany Hudack of Ashland made a triumphant return to the red-clay oval with her 18th career feature win here. Hudack, who is running a part-time schedule in 2019 due to work commitments, took the lead from Jake Nevala during the first of the race’s 12 laps with an outside pass, then hugged the bottom line throughout the rest of the run to keep her challengers at bay.

The race was a struggle to complete, as five yellow-flag slowdowns plagued the first seven laps and eliminated nearly half of the 12-car field. Over the first four laps Hudack cruised to a 1.33-second lead, while Randy Graham – who had finished second to Hudack in the points last season but had won the track’s first two Sixes A-mains in her absence – was mired in congested traffic and struggled to get by Nevala. But when Devin Dalbec’s car stalled to bring about the first caution stoppage, it drew the field up close to Hudack’s rear bumper.

Hudack was pressured by both Graham and Matt Deragon after each of the next four restarts – two of which came about when Graham was spun by a car behind him. But it was Graham who applied the most pressure when he tried to wedge his car under Hudack’s in the first turn of the final lap, then tried to sweep around her in the final corner but could not build enough momentum.

Deragon, Forrest Schultz and Nevala took the third through fifth finishing spots.

Graham did get a measure of revenge by capturing the 10-lap WISSOTA Pure Stock feature for the second week in a row. At the start of this non-stop event, the speedster from Trego worked low to take second away from Dylan Shelton, then used a similar move snare the lead from James Vendela.

The lead pair pulled away, with Graham ahead by a couple of car-lengths, while visiting Jared Akervik sparred with Justin Weinberger for fourth, just ahead of Shelton. Eventually Graham stretched his advantage to 1.34 seconds over Vendela as he cruised to his 21st career win at ABC and fourth this year. Akervik won the battle with Weinberger for third, followed by Shelton.

The historic moment of the night occurred courtesy of the WISSOTA Hornets, as Dayna Marken of Duluth, MN, joined Hudack to establish the first time two female drivers won features on the same night at the ABC Raceway.

Marken’s win came in a rather strange manner, as she did not look to be a challenger to frontrunners Tate Niehaus and Derek Dunbar early on. But on a lap 3 restart after Hunter McDougall’s car died, leader Niehaus’ car stalled. When the race was restarted again, Marken took advantage and moved from fifth to second, threatening to take the lead from Paul Ripley.

The threat became reality with three laps to go, although Ripley stayed close and tried to take the lead back on several occasions. Finally, going into turn 3 for the final time, Ripley dove too hard into the corner and slipped up the embankment, coming to a stop at the guardrail, and Marken sped away uncontested for the her first-ever win, trailed at a distance by Dunbar, a recovered Niehaus, Nate Rose and Mitch Kieber.

The best single-lap times in the features were posted by Uotinen in the Mods (17.609 seconds; 76.665 mph), Casari in the Supers (18.100; 74.586), Copp in the Mid-Mods (17.721; 76.181), and Graham in both the Sixes (19.293; 69.974) and Pure Stocks (19.859; 67.979).

Throughout the race night – and for about a week leading up to Saturday’s program – at least a half-dozen different fundraising opportunities were made available for race fans to participate in and donate to, with collected proceeds to be distributed to the American Cancer Society and The Brick Ministries food shelf, which serves needy residents of the Chequamegon Bay area of northern Wisconsin.

The two fundraisers which got the most attention among the fans on this night were those run by WISSOTA Hornet drivers Laura Luger and Jason Ronning, and by the Raceway’s chief flagman, Ray Stuart. The factions were, in fact, in direct opposition of one another: the drivers had announced earlier in the week that they would attempt to raise at least $2,000 in donations during Saturday’s race program, with Stuart challenging that if they did, he would volunteer to sit on the platform of a dunk tank during an upcoming race night for one hour and allow fans to throw at the tank target.

Stuart then produced a challenge of his own, dangling a bucket from his post on the flag-stand platform by the grandstands throughout the race night to collect donations of his own in the hopes that he could raise divert enough funds away from the other collection point so as not to have to endure the dunk tank.

Of course, both challenges were done in good fun, as well as for two very worthy causes, and the results were quite positive. These efforts, along with favorite-driver voting, button sales, and contributions from candy bar and magazine sales, generated a total of $4,525 in total donations, plus many dozens of pounds of non-perishable food items. The ABC Raceway greatly appreciates the enormous generosity of the fans in attendance who donated to the fundraisers.

Also, as part of the “Meet the Drivers” Night fun, many racers, sponsors and fans donated bikes and other prizes which were given away to the young fans at the track on Saturday. The ABC Raceway extends its thanks to All-Performance Dyno Service, Barningham Racing (in memory of Jordan Barningham), Brian Olby Logging, Corbel LLC, Dave Anderson Trucking, Dave Flynn Racing, Don Muzzy Racing, FastLane Motorsports, GA Dalbeck Logging, Hiatt & Son Trucking and Hiatt Racing, Jonathan Popp Racing, Kevin Eder Racing, Lightning Storm Graphics, Luger Trucking and Luger Racing, Lulich Implement, Mashlan Business Services and Mashlan Racing, Matt Deragon Racing, Nascar Nevs, Neighborly Bar and Green Monster Storage, Nick Oreskovich Racing, North Central Working Western Horse Celebration, Randy Graham Racing, Saunders Racing, and Superior Floral and Prime Time Sign for their generous contributions.

The ABC Raceway’s annual Hall of Fame induction ceremonies will take place this Saturday night, June 22. Zar’s Bar & Banquet Hall of Ashland will be the presenting sponsor and host the inductees’ luncheon, and the Class of 2019 will be honored on the front straightaway during a special celebration at intermission. All six divisions will be in action.

The grandstands will open at 5 pm, and hot laps will start at 6:15, followed by the first green flag of the night at 7 pm. “Race Night” will air on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, with up-to-date track news and weather updates every 15-20 minutes from 4:30-6 pm; coverage will also stream on www.wbszfm.com and on the free Heartland Communications Group radio app.

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, abcraceway.com.

All photos by Tom Krob shooterguyphotos.com

RESULTS

WISSOTA Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: Steve Stuart, Ashland; Al Uotinen, Superior; Kevin Eder, Ashland; Jeff Spacek, Phillips; Bill Byholm, Glidden; Cody Carlson, Superior; Jake Hiatt, Mason; Pat Cook, Washburn; Tyler Luger, Oxford; Paul Suzik, Ironwood, MI.

11-13: Steve Lavasseur, River Falls; Paul Niznik, Medford; John Toppozini, Thunder Bay, ON.

Heat 1: Eder; Stuart; Byholm; Hiatt; Luger; Lavasseur.

Heat 2: Carlson; Uotinen; Spacek; Suzik; Niznik; Toppozini.

WISSOTA Super Stocks

Feature: 1-10: Cory Casari, Montreal; Nick Oreskovich, Mason; Matt Deragon, Ashland; Terran Spacek, Phillips; DJ Keeler, Superior; Curt Myers, Cameron; Don Muzzy, Ironwood, MI; Kyle Copp, Brule; Patrick Beeksma, Ironwood, MI; Andrew Mackey, Roseville, MN.

11-15: Greg Kuklinski, Ironwood, MI; Aaron Mashlan, Ashland; David Elliott, Minocqua; Rick Randall, Wakefield, MI; Rita Anderson, South Range.

Heat 1: Myers; Beeksma; Muzzy; Spacek; Anderson; Mackey; Randall; Mashlan.

Heat 2: Kuklinski; Casari; Oreskovich; Keeler; Copp; Deragon; Elliott.

WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: David Simpson, Thunder Bay, ON; Wayne Stricker, Highbridge; George Dalbeck, Wakefield, MI; Jimmy Latvala, Solon Springs; Gunner Peterson, South Range; Clay Passuello, Ironwood, MI; George Truscott, Greenland, MI; Ross Fuhrman, Ashland; Jesse Aho, Toivola, MI; Steve Altman, Mercer.

11-17: Tyler Hudack, Ashland; Bill Muhlig, Bessemer, MI; Justin Weinberger, Park Falls; Ryan Barningham, Bayfield; Marcus Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; Darren Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; Brandon Copp, Brule.

Heat 1: Simpson; Latvala; Peterson; Dalbeck; Barningham; D Dunbar; Truscott; Fuhrman; Ryan Savoy, Superior.

Heat 2: Stricker; Copp; Hudack; M Dunbar; Passuello; Aho; Weinberger; Altman; Muhlig.

ABC Six-Cylinders

Feature: 1-10: Tiffany Hudack, Ashland; Randy Graham, Trego; Matt Deragon, Ashland; Forrest Schultz, Ashland; Jake Nevala, Ashland; DeJay Jarecki, Ashland; Adam Traaholt, Ashland; Bubba Anderson, Trego; Jordan Pearce, Ashland; Jonathan Popp, Iron River.

11-12: Devin Dalbec, Ashland; Josh Saunders, Spooner.

Heat 1: Hudack; Graham; Popp; Nevala; Anderson; Dalbec.

Heat 2: Traaholt; Schultz; Deragon; Jarecki; Pearce; Saunders.

WISSOTA Pure Stocks

Feature: 1-9: Randy Graham, Trego; James Vendela, South Range; Jared Akervik, Superior; Justin Weinberger, Park Falls; Dylan Shelton, Wrenshall, MN; Brandle Pupp, Highbridge; Don Livingston, Washburn; Jason Simonson, Poplar; Brock Beilke, Hayward.

Heat: Weinberger; Graham; Vendela; Akervik; Shelton; Livingston; Simonson; Pupp; Beilke.

WISSOTA Hornets

Feature: 1-10: Dayna Marken, Duluth, MN; Derek Dunbar, Iron River; Tate Niehaus, Alborn, MN; Nate Rose, Duluth, MN; Mitch Kieber, Ironwood, MI; Jason Ronning, Ashland; Kristy Marken, Duluth, MN; Neil Dees, Hurley; Brad Currier, Alborn, MN; Paul Ripley, Duluth, MN.

11-12: Shawn Young, Stone Lake; Hunter McDougall, Duluth, MN.

Heat 1: Ronning; D Marken; Dunbar; Rose; K Marken; Kieber.

Heat 2: Ripley; Niehaus; Currier; Dees; Young; McDougall.

June 15 Free Grandstand Admission

ABC Raceway to Offer Free Admission while Raising Funds for Worthwhile Causes

by Nick Gima

Ashland, WI, June 13 – This Saturday will be a busy night at the ABC Raceway.

First off, the award-winning northern Wisconsin red-clay oval is presenting a full night of stock car racing action “on the house,” with free grandstand admission for all fans in attendance. Then, prior to the night’s green-flag action, fans young and old alike will get the opportunity to visit with their favorite drivers on the front straightaway and collect autographs, treats and souvenirs during the popular “Meet the Drivers” session, to be presented by Little Caesar’s Pizza of Ashland.

And throughout the program, fans will be encouraged to contribute generously to the area’s charitable causes as part of Northern Clearing Inc’s “Racing for a Reason” fund raiser, with support from the Heartland Communications Group of radio stations.

The Raceway, in cooperation with its sponsors, will have designated areas located at the front gate and throughout the facility, where fans can make cash and non-perishable food item donations. Contributions will be distributed to the American Cancer Society and to The Brick Ministries.

“We collected nearly 1,400 pounds of food and almost $800 last year at this event,” Raceway Board president Eric Erickson recalled recently. “With help from our incredible fans, we’d love to top those numbers at this year’s event.”

All six weekly divisions will once again be in action. The WISSOTA Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds have been coming out in strong numbers, there has been a loyal showing by locals in the WISSOTA Pure Stocks and ABC Six-Cylinders, and early indications are proving that the introduction of the WISSOTA Hornets to the weekly program will become a popular move.

Instead of hot laps, the “meet-and-greet” session will kick off the program with cars on the track at 6:45; green-flag racing should get started shortly after 7 pm.

“Race Night” will air on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, with up-to-date track news and weather updates every 15-20 minutes from 4:30-6 pm; coverage will also stream on www.wbszfm.com and on the free Heartland Communications Group radio app.

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.

June 8th Results

Sabraski Tops Mod Tour & Super Stock Features at ABC

by Nick Gima

Ashland, WI, June 8 – After his performance at the ABC Raceway this past Saturday night, Shane Sabraski most certainly has washed away any remaining bad taste that he may have had after his visit here last September – and then some.

Sabraski not only redeemed himself by winning the WISSOTA Super Stock feature at the northern Wisconsin track, but he also swept both his qualifying heat race and the “Kwik-Trip 35” WISSOTA Modified headliner to capture his fourth win in the first six races of the 2019 schedule of the Advantage RV Mod Tour presented by Watertown Ford-Chrysler.

The eighty-seven entries for the Ashland area Kwik-Trip Convenience Stores-sponsored program included 30 Modifieds representing four states and two Canadian provinces. A smooth, black-slick racing surface produced three- and four-wide racing throughout many of the features.

Sabraski, of Rice, MN, had come into the Ashland stop on the Advantage RV Mod Tour as the series’ points leader, jumping ahead of defending Tour champ Dan Ebert after Sabraski’s feature win in Superior the night before. The pair had been alternating Tour wins over the first five shows of this year’s schedule going back to the previous weekend, but Sabraski put an end to that with a nearly flawless performance here.

For the second straight year the Tour feature at ABC went green-to-checkered without a stop. Ebert swept around polestarter Jody Bellefeuille to establish early control of the event and within five laps built a lead of nearly two full seconds, while Bellefeuille had all he could do to fend off former Tour champ Jeremy Nelson.

Sabraski had started on the outside of the third row but moved up to fourth place very quickly, albeit a distance back of the battle for second but well ahead of Johnny Broking, who had displaced Andy Jones for fifth on lap 8. As Ebert stretched his lead to 2.2 seconds after ten laps, Sabraski methodically caught and passed Nelson for third, then slipped by Bellefeuille for second over the next eight-lap stretch, using the tricky bottom lane while most other racers – including Ebert – were flying around the high side of the red-clay oval.

Ebert’s early dominance eventually became part of his undoing, as he caught backmarkers before lap 20. His efforts to weave and dodge through the slower cars allowed Sabraski to erase the two-second deficit and, on lap 21, slip low against Ebert in the heavy traffic to take over the lead. Ebert spent the next ten laps searching for a quicker route in order to keep pace with the leader, but Sabraski maintained a low-line strategy and pulled away to a 2.6-second margin of victory.

Nelson eventually re-established himself in third ahead of Bellefeuille, as those two waged a dogfight throughout the run, and eighth-starting Don Eischens came home fifth. Ebert set the fastest lap of the race early at 17.757 seconds (76.026 mph).

Sabraski’s measure of revenge on the Ashland oval didn’t come in the Mod race, but in the Super Stock A-feature. At last September’s Red Clay Classic he had battled from deep in the field to take the Super Stock feature lead late, then held on for what was assumed to be his first-ever win here, but his car did not pass the post-race technical inspection.

Saturday night’s story turned out much better for Sabraski, as his Super Stock was both very fast and perfectly legal. He started outside on the fourth row for the 20-lapper and bided his time as all-time ABC feature win leader Greg Kuklinski and rookie Andrew Mackey battled side-by-side for the early lead. As Kuklinski gained a small advantage, Mackey fell back into a pack with Don Muzzy and Nick Oreskovich in a debate for second.

An Aaron Mashlan spin on lap 3 slowed the pace down for a moment, and then contact between Kuklinski and Muzzy on the restart collected three other racers and forced a long caution slowdown. Another five-car mess on that restart delayed the proceedings again, but this time Sabraski was in position to pounce, restarting just behind Kuklinski and alongside Mackey in third.

Sabraski worked inside on Kuklinski and slipped by for the lead on lap 4 and was never to be challenged again, despite another stoppage for a spin by Mackey on lap 8. Kuklinski’s car began showing smoke and seemed off-pace throughout the rest of the run, which stayed under green, and he faded back, allowing Cory Casari, Oreskovich and others to pass by over the remaining laps.

Sabraski’s final margin of victory was 2.777 seconds, and he set the race’s fast lap with a time of 18.142 seconds (74.413 mph). Oreskovich threatened to take second away from Casari just after the lap 8 restart, but Casari prevailed for runner-up honors, and later in the run Matt Deragon got by Oreskovich for third. Shawn McFadden Jr completed the top five.

Four caution-flag slowdowns over the final nine laps of the WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature made for some frustrating racing, but Wakefield, MI’s George Dalbeck prevailed for his second feature win of the season here and his second in as many nights, after a dominant performance in Superior on Friday. Dalbeck, who also started on the outside of row 4, picked his way through to third place after just three laps, behind an entertaining battle for the lead between polestarter Brandon Copp and Clay Passuello.

Copp eventually pulled away as Passuello was overtaken by first David Simpson and then Dalbeck on lap 5. Dalbeck then slipped past Simpson and began to run down Copp, pulling alongside the leader under the flagstand just as the caution flag flew for visitor Michael McKay’s spin on lap 11.

Jesse Aho joined the battle for the lead as the green flag flew again, but Copp and Aho, running the outer groove, slipped too far up the track in turn 4, allowing Dalbeck to steal the lead away down low. Marcus Dunbar took third away from Aho just before a Darren Dunbar spin on lap 14 slowed the pace, and Wayne Jacques looped his ride after another lap was scored. Simpson retook third from Marcus Dunbar before a four-car melee brought about the final stoppage of the race with five laps to go, but Dalbeck had a stout enough ride to pull to a one-second advantage at the checkers over Copp, Marcus Dunbar, Simpson and Aho.

Dalbeck added the fast-lap bonus to his winnings with a time of 18.394 seconds (73.393 mph)

Trego’s Randy Graham did his best Shane Sabraski imitation by topping two features as well on this night. In the 12-lap ABC Six-Cylinder main event, Graham – who, like Sabraski and Dalbeck, started outside on the fourth row – picked his way through dense traffic and took advantage of a lap 5 restart to grab the first of his back-to-back wins.

Deragon held off Adam Traaholt early on for the lead, until Jonathan Popp took second away from Traaholt on lap 2. Graham worked inside on Popp for the runner-up position two laps later, but it took the lap 5 spin by Jordan Pearce to help eliminate Deragon’s sizeable advantage.

Popp caught Deragon and Graham napping on the restart and jumped by both for the lead, but they returned the favor on the next restart, which came two laps later after Devin Dalbec’s ride stalled at the top of turn 4. From there Graham got by Deragon and the lead pair sped away to finish a distant 1-2 ahead of Popp. Forest Schultz came home fourth, and Bubba Anderson crossed under the checkers in fifth but was disqualified for failing to visit the scales and teching area after the race, giving the position to Traaholt.

Graham’s other win came in the WISSOTA Pure Stock feature, but this time he didn’t have as far to go to get to the front. Starting alongside polestarter Brandle Pupp, Graham won the drag race into the first turn at the drop of the green and led all ten non-stop laps, although not without a challenge.

After two laps Justin Weinberger took over the second position, and for the balance of the race he kept the heat on the leader. James Vendela replaced Pupp in third on lap 3, but he was too far back to mount much of a threat for the win, although he was never challenged for the third spot, either. Visiting Dylan Shelton got by Pupp for fourth at mid-race, and Don Livingston overcame a couple of early-race stumbles to climb back to fifth at the finish.

After a couple of early-race cautions, Jake Smith of St Joseph, MN, became the third different WISSOTA Hornet feature winner in ABC Raceway history. Smith moved up quickly from his third-row-inside starting spot and restarted second behind polestarter Paul George after a lap 1 spin by Tate Niehaus. Smith made an immediate move to the inside line at the green and grabbed the lead, and for the next six laps the lead trio of Smith, George and Hunter McDougall raced nose-to-tail away from the rest of the pack.

Smith and George pulled away from McDougall over the final two laps, and coming out of turn 4 for the final time George dove to the inside in a last-ditch attempt to steal the win, but Smith’s car was too strong and he prevailed by less than a car-length. Niehaus recovered for fourth-place money, ahead of Derek Dunbar.

On Saturday, June 15, Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland will present its “Racing for a Reason” fundraiser night, to be co-sponsored by the Heartland Communications Group of radio stations. All grandstand admissions are free, and goodwill offerings will be accepted throughout the evening for local charitable causes, including the Chequamegon Bay area chapters of the American Cancer Society’s “Relay for Life” program.

In addition, the Kids’ “Meet the Drivers” Night festivities, to be presented by Little Caesar’s Pizza of Ashland, has been rescheduled to take place prior to this Saturday’s race program. All six divisions will once again be in action.

The grandstands will open this Saturday at 5 pm, and hot laps will start at 6:15, followed by the “meet-and-greet” session. The first green flag of the night is scheduled to fly shortly after 7 pm. “Race Night” will air on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, with up-to-date track news and weather updates every 15-20 minutes from 4:30-6 pm; coverage will also stream on www.wbszfm.com and on the free Heartland Communications Group radio app.

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: Shane Sabraski, Rice, MN; Dan Ebert, Lake Shore, MN; Jeremy Nelson, Alexandria, MN; Jody Bellefeuille, Duluth, MN; Don Eischens, Richmond, MN; Pat Cook, Washburn; Dave Cain, Corcoran, MN; Johnny Broking, Grand Rapids, MN; Jeff Spacek, Phillips; Andy Jones, Princeton, MN.

11-20: Mike Stearns, Hecla, SD; Tyler Luger, Oxford; Neil Balduc, Bessemer, MI; Darrell Nelson, Hermantown, MN; Joseph Thomas, Glyndon, MN; Bob Broking, Grand Rapids, MN; Steve Stuart, Ashland; Jerome Guyot, Fannystelle, MB; Cody Wolkowski, Thunder Bay, ON; Cody Carlson, Superior.

21-25: Steve Lavasseur, River Falls; Todd Gehl, Solon Springs; Bill Byholm, Glidden; Corky Thomas, Glyndon, MN; Al Uotinen, Superior, WI.

Semi-Feature 1: D Nelson; J Spacek; Lavasseur; Wolkowski; J Thomas; Uotinen; Paul Niznik, Medford; Dan Kingsley, Superior.

Semi-Feature 2: Balduc; Carlson; B Broking; Byholm; Gehl; Stuart; Jake Hiatt, Mason; Paul Suzik, Ironwood, MI; Cole Spacek, Phillips.

Heat 1: Eischens; Bellefeuille; Stearns; J Spacek; Uotinen; Wolkowski; J Thomas; Lavasseur.

Heat 2: Sabraski; J Broking; Cook; Carlson; Stuart; Balduc; Gehl; Suzik.

Heat 3: J Nelson; Luger; Guyot; D Nelson; Niznik; Corky Thomas, Glyndon, MN; Kingsley.

Heat 4: Ebert; Jones; Cain; Byholm; B Broking; C Spacek; Hiatt.

WISSOTA Super Stocks

Feature: 1-10: Shane Sabraski, Rice, MN; Cory Casari, Montreal; Matt Deragon, Ashland; Nick Oreskovich, Mason; Shawn McFadden, Ashland; Kyle Copp, Brule; Don Muzzy, Ironwood, MI; Andrew Mackey, Roseville, MN; Greg Kuklinski, Ironwood, MI; Rita Anderson, South Range.

11-12: Aaron Mashlan, Ashland; Scott Lawrence, Superior.

Heat 1: Oreskovich; Muzzy; Mackey; Kuklinski; Mashlan; Anderson.

Heat 2: Deragon; Lawrence; Sabraski; McFadden; Casari; Copp.

WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds

Feature: 1-10: George Dalbeck, Wakefield, MI; Brandon Copp, Brule; Marcus Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; David Simpson, Thunder Bay, ON; Jesse Aho, Toivola, MI; Justin Weinberger, Park Falls; Ross Fuhrman, Ashland; Gunner Peterson, South Range; Darren Dunbar, Marenisco, MI; Jimmy Latvala, Solon Springs.

11-18: Ryan Barningham, Bayfield; Bill Muhlig, Bessemer, MI; Steve Altman, Mercer; Michael McKay, Sparta; Wayne Jacques, Thunder Bay, ON; Clay Passuello, Ironwood, MI; Billy Milne, Thunder Bay, ON; Anthony Forfa Jr, Phillips.

Heat 1: Dalbeck; Simpson; Aho; Peterson; Jacques; Muhlig; Milne; McKay.

Heat 2: Copp; Latvala; Passuello; Barningham; M Dunbar; Weinberger; Altman; Forfa.

ABC Six-Cylinders

Feature: 1-9: Randy Graham, Trego; Matt Deragon, Ashland; Jonathan Popp, Iron River; Forrest Schultz, Ashland; Adam Traaholt, Ashland; DeJay Jarecki, Ashland; Jordan Pearce, Ashland; Jake Nevala, Ashland; Devin Dalbec, Ashland.

Heat 1: Schultz; Pearce; Traaholt; Dalbec; Bubba Anderson, Trego; Josh Saunders, Spooner.

Heat 2: Graham; Jarecki; Popp; Deragon; Nevala.

WISSOTA Pure Stocks

Feature: 1-7: Randy Graham, Trego; Justin Weinberger, Park Falls; James Vendela, South Range; Dylan Shelton, Wrenshall, MN; Don Livingston, Washburn; Brandle Pupp, Highbridge; Brock Beilke, Hayward.

Heat: Graham; Weinberger; Vendela; Shelton; Pupp; Beilke; Livingston.

WISSOTA Hornets

Feature: 1-7: Jake Smith, St Joseph, MN; Paul George, Princeton, MN; Hunter McDougall, Duluth, MN; Tate Niehaus, Alborn, MN; Derek Dunbar, Iron River; Mitch Kieber, Ironwood, MI; Brad Currier, Alborn, MN.

Heat: Smith; McDougall; George; Niehaus; Dayna Marken, Duluth, MN; Dunbar; Currier; Kieber.

June 8th

The “Kwik-Trip 35” Advantage RV Mod Series regional touring event is up next, slated for June 8. Several top-level WISSOTA Modified racers are expected to visit the northern Wisconsin speedplant for the third race of a four-track, four-night swing through the region that includes stops at Grand Rapids, MN; Superior, and Proctor, MN. All six divisions will once again be in action for the program, which will be presented by the three Ashland area Kwik-Trip convenience stores.

The grandstands will open this Saturday at 5 pm, hot laps will start at 6:15, and the first green flag of the night is scheduled to fly at 7 pm. “Race Night” will air on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, with up-to-date track news and weather updates every 15-20 minutes from 4:30-6 pm; coverage will also stream on www.wbszfm.com and on the free Heartland Communications Group radio app.

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.