Mullen wins Modified feature at Speedzone opener
Oshkosh, April 25 – The long, lingering winter finally gave a glimmer of hope as the Oshkosh SpeedZone Raceway was able to open the racing season in northeastern Wisconsin Friday night. A field of 135 cars checked in to take on the 1/3 mile oval and a hearty crowd braved the windy, cold conditions to witness some great racing action.
The Gold Star Racing Products Street Stocks were first up for feature action. Jon Ashcraft grabbed the lead at the start with Frank Knaus pulling right behind. The pair quickly put distance on the rest of the field with the battle for third drawing the most attention. Ryan Blank, Patty Winkler, Jeff Jungwirth, Steve Gawaresky swapped back and forth with Jerry Winlker joing the fray about mid race. Ashcraft and Knaus ran nose to tail at the lead and Jerry Winlker finally wrestled third spot and set out after the leaders. Over the final few laps it was a three car battle at the front with Ashhcraft at the helm. Knaus and Winkler ran side by side behind and at the finish, Ashcrast collected the hard fought win with Winkler sneaking by Kanus for the runner up finish. Gawaresky, Patty Winkler and Blank rounded out the top six.
The Total Power Sales IMCA Stock Cars made their return to the SpeedZone for the first time since the 2000 season and put 14 cars on the feature grid. Rod Snellenberger started on the pole and quickly pulled into the lead. Justin Jacobsen, David Hoerning, Travis Van Straten and John Heinz were grouped behind. Several cautions bunched the field around mid race, but each time Hot Rod was able to retake the lead. A final restart with 6 laps remaining gave Heinz a shot at the lead as he moved into the runner up spot and right behind the leader. The perennial rivals put on a great battle with Snellenberger able to hold on to collect the opening checkers with Heinz right behind. Jacobsen followed with Van Straten marking his return to the Stock Car ranks taking fourth. Hoerning and Dylan Heilmann rounded out the top six.
The Outlaw Chassis Grand Nationals became a three car battle royal with Jeff Sancinati taking up position behind. Richards held a lead early but Reichenberger and Sanciniati would make a thrilling race at the front, swapping positions on each lap. With just a few laps left, Reichenberger slipped back leaving Richards to battle Sancinati for the win. Sancinati tried every option to gain the lead, but Richards was up to each challenge and was able to take the victory by half car length to claim his first feature win since June 1, 2012. Reichenberger took third followed by defending track champion, Larry Richards, Tom Schneider and Jeff Steinbergen.
The Automotive Supply Company IMCA Modifieds once again put a stealthy field out for the feature event. Mike Mullen drew the pole and immediately pulled away from the rest of the field. However, there was plenty of racing behind. Defendiong champion, Sean Jerovetz, Johnny Whitman, rookie, Josh Long and Tony Wedelstadt ran a spirited race for second through much of the nonstop race. By the time Jerovetz and Whitman broke free, Mullen had opened up a huge lead, and although Jerovetz was able to close the gap, Mullen had an easy run to his first feature win here since June 15, 2012. Jerovetz, Whitman, Long, Tony Wedelstadt, and Mike Wedelstadst rounded out the top six.
Jon Schultz took the opening lap lead in the IMCA Sport Mod main with Ryan Besaw taking shot at the lead for a couple laps before Brandon Schmitt took over on lap 5. A couple cautions kept the field bunched but Schmitt maintained the lead white Schultz, Steve Schneider and Besaw swapped placed right behind. Following a final restart on lap 14, Schneider was able to slip inside and take the lead leaving Schmitt and Schultz to decide second place. Schneider claimed the victory going away with Schmitt edging Schutz for the runner up finish. Colten Van Hierden came through the consy and from the back of the field to claim fourth place followed by Besaw and J.J. Andersen.
The nightcap was the Ellington Mutual Insurance Dirt Devils, and it was a free for all at the front for much of the race, as six different drivers lead over the first 6 laps. A crash on lap 9 took out leader Rick Fairbank, and several others, including defending champion, Jason Fairbank. On the restart, Jasper Drengler slipped inside and took the top spot with Shaun Bangert moving into the runner up spot. Bangart chased down the leader and put the pressure on for the lead. On lap 18, Bangart was able to pull off the pass and ran away to his first feature win of the year. Drengler placed second followed by Christopher Maas, Patrick Klawitter, Cody Pankow and Wes Lungwitz.
The SpeedZone will present a double header weekend this week. Its regular six division program on Friday night, May 2, with racing at 7 p.m., that will be followed by the rain date for the IRA Outlaw Sprints on Sunday, May 4. The Sprints will be joined by the Street Stocks, Dirt Devils and Grand Nationals. Grandstand will open at 2. Hot Laps and qualifying at 4 with racing starting at 5 p.m.
The Oshkosh SpeedZone Raceway is located at the Sunnyview Expo Center/Fairgrounds just off Hwy 41,on Hwy 76 and Cty Y.
AUTOMOTIVE SUPPLY COMPANY IMCA MODIFIEDS
20 Lap Feature Mike Mullen 2. Sean Jerovetz, 3. Johnny Whitman 4,Josh Long 5, Tony Wedelstadt 6, Mike Wedelstadt
10 Lap Concy First l. Ed Lemay 2. Jared Siefert
Second Matt Recheck 2, Josh Zdroik
8 Lap Heats First l. Mullen 2. Troy Jerovetz
Second l. Mike Wedelstadt 2. Johnny Whitmen
Third 1l Eddie Muenster 2. Eric Mahlik
Fouth l. Chris Engels 2. Brian Drexler
IMCA NORTHERN SPORT MODS
20 Lap Feature l. Steve Schneider 2. Brandon Schmitt 3,.Jon Schultz 4. Colten VanHierden 5. Ryan Besaw 6. J.J,. Andersen
10 Lap Consy First l. Todd Wiese 2. Hunter Parsons
Second l. Kach McKinnon 2,.Nick Furman
8 Lpa Heats First l. Van Hierden 2. Andersen
Second l Schneider 2. Besaw
Third l. Bernie Miller 2, Andy Kleczka
Fourth l. Schultz 2. Kelsey Hayes
Fifth l. Tracy Wassenberg 2. Schmitt
GOLD STAR RACING PRODUCTS STREET STOCKS
20 Lap Feature l. Jon Ashcraft 2. Jerry Winkler 3. Frankn KLnaus 4, Steve Gawaresky 5, Pattyy Winkler 6. Ryan Blank
8 Lap Heats First Ashcraft 2. Jeff Junbgwirth
Second l. Mark Schultz 2. Dan Knaus
OUTLAW CHASSIS GRAND NATIONALS
20 Lap Feature l. Jeff Richards 2. Charlie Sancinati 3. Tim Reichenberger 4. Larry Richards 5. Tom Schneider 6. Jeff Steinbergen
8 Lap Heats First l. Reichenberger 2., Larry Richards
Second l. Sancinbati 2. Terry Van Roy
TOTAL POWER SALES IMCA STOCK CARS
20 Lap Feature l. Rod Snellenberger 2. John Heinz 3. Justin Jacobsen 4. Travis Van Straten 5, David Hoerning 6. Dulan Heilmann
8 Lap Heats First l. Jacobsen 2,. Van Straten
Second l. Larry Karcz, Jr 2. Heinz
ELLINGTON MUTUAL INSURANCE DIRT DEVILS
20 Lap Feature l Shaun Bangart 2,. Jasper Drengler 3. Christopher Maas 4. Patrick Klawitter 5. Cody Pankow 6. Wes Lungwitz
8 Lap Heats First l. Jason Fairbank 2. Kasey Gross
Second l. Bangart 2. Rick Fairbank
Thiord l Drengler 2. Klawitter