Menomonie WI, August 16 – The regular season finale took place Friday night at the Red Cedar Speedway as drivers fought for late season feature wins while also tuning and testing for the upcoming Punky Manor Challenge of Champions race to be held September 20th and 21st .
In what may have been the most closely contested main event of the night, Jimmy Randall fought his way to the front and then held off a late charge to take his first Red Cedar win of 2013. Also making his first appearance of the year in victory lane was Travis Anderson with other winners including Mike Prochnow, Kevin Adams, Ben Hillman, Jason Havel and Brent Voeltz.
The Street Stock feature field was anything but large but the nonstop main event saw a great four car battle for the lead most of the event before Randall broke away. Mike Knudtson took the early lead with Danny Richards challenging him hard. Sam Fankhauser moved in to make it a three car battle with Fankhauser looking under Richards on every corner. Randall then drove in to make it a four way fight for the lead as the front runners jockeyed on every lap, exchanging positions and places on the track.
Randall found a hole right in the midst of the battlers and down the front chute split the pack and my turn two he had grabbed the lead. As he stretched his advantage to a few car lengths, the fight for second continued with Knudtson putting on a charge and taking the spot. Randall was running higher on the track than the rest of the front runners, but Knudtson started to reel him in on the final few laps, drawing very close on the final circuit but Randall hung on for the win. Fankhauser settled for third with Richards and Adam Soltis also in the top five.
Anderson was badly in need of a feature win after an extended period of hard luck racing and Friday he made it happen, besting the Midwest Modifieds in another nonstop main event. Anderson started in the second row, but he got a great start, blasting past Mark Thomas and Jake Smith to take the lead before one lap was completed. There was some heavy battling back in the pack and that allowed Anderson to put some ground on the field.
Josh Smith, Nick Koehler, Grant Southworth and Shane Halopka were among the drivers moving toward the front but all were chasing Anderson. Koehler and Halopka particularly had an excellent battle for second, with them swapping the position a couple of times before Halopka claimed the spot. However, Anderson had built up a solid lead and he drove home for the win with Halopka, Koehler, Josh Smith and Southworth finishing in that order.
Prochnow controlled the Late Model field, getting to the front fairly quickly after he passed early leader Scott Gilberts. Once in front, the battle was for second as Prochnow opened up a comfortable lead over the pack. Rick Hanestad picked up the pace as he drove past Gilberts and settled into second, but he could provide no serious challenge to Prochnow, who raced home for his fourth Red Cedar win of the year. Jake Redetzke made a late charge to take third ahead of Gilberts and Ron Prochnow, who came out of retirement Friday to run the second Prochnow Farms entry.
Adams made a nice run up through the field to record his fourth Red Cedar feature win of 2013. Mark Hanson had his best run of the year as he led the opening six laps of the main. Adams started in the third row and moved up to challenge Ross Prochnow for second. After a brief battle, he took that spot and then closed on Hanson with Mark Gerth following him to the front.
Adams pulled up beside Hanson and with a strong run on the high side, shot past Hanson to take over the lead. Gerth then moved in to challenge Hanson for second. Unfortunately, they touched in turn one and Gerth was done with a flat tire while their scramble allowed Prochnow to grab second. As Adams built up nearly a straightaway lead, Cory Mahder made a late rush from the fourth row and slipped past Prochnow for second. Hanson and Mike Anderson completed the top five.
There was plenty of action in a hard fought Super Stock main with the yellow flag getting a workout in this event which saw a variety of spins slow the action five times. Jason Forehand was the early leader but he was then tracked down by both Hillman and Steve Thomas and they split the leader, with Hillman then blasting into the lead.
However, there still was plenty of action for position as Tommy Richards, Aaron Wilson and Eric Olson were among those really moving through the field. Olson was working the low side and with his best effort of the year, he drove into second before the last yellow waved with four laps to go.
Hillman continued to lead on the restart but Olson had a bad start and dropped to fourth as Wilson moved into the runner up slot and put pressure on the leader. What looked to be a battle to the finish turned instead into a bizarre finish as two of the top five cars had trouble on the last lap.
Hillman continued to drive on for his fourth Red Cedar win but Wilson developed steering problems and the last lap and limped home fifith. Meanwhile, Olson and Thomas were battling on the final lap for fourth when they touched and Olson got a flat and he failed to finish. Richards came out of no where to finish second with Forehand gladly grabbing third ahead of Thomas and the slowing Wilson.
Pure Stock feature racing saw Havel earn his second Red Cedar win of the year. Kent Harmon was the early leader and he showed the way for a couple of laps before Havel found an opening on the low side of the track and shot into the lead. George Richards was also on the move as he drove into second and looked to challenge Havel. Unfortunately for George, he lost control in turn four and spin with Harmon clipping him and both cars were out of the race.
Havel took the lead on the restart with Jeremy Dahl pressuring him but Havel found his groove and drove on for the win. Hunter VanGilder, Andrew Conklin and Mike Grover wrapped up the top five.
The Hornet feature saw Voeltz get to the front early and cruise home for his fifth Red Cedar win over Mark McQuisten, Leslie Jackson, Dean Butler and Dustin Shackleton.
The Red Cedar Speedway will now prepare for the Punky Manor Challenge of Champions. Race fans should check the speedway website at www.redcedarspeedway.com for the schedule of events and purse information on the Punky.
Red Cedar Speedway
August 16, 2013
WISSOTA Late Models
20 lap Feature – Mike Prochnow(Menomonie), Rick Hanestad(Boyceville), Jake Redetzke(Eau Claire), Scott Gilberts(Menomonie), Ron Prochnow(Menomonie), Todd Green(Eau Claire)
8 lap Heat – Hanestad, Gilberts, M. Prochnow, Redetzke, R. Prochnow, Green
18 lap Feature – Kevin Adams(Cameron), Cory Mahder(Elk Mound), Ross Prochnow(Boyceville), Mark Hanson(Chippewa Falls), Mike Anderson(Colfax), Neil Balduc(Bessemer MI), Dave Baxter(Eau Claire), Mark Hessler(Menomonie), Jay Richardson(Spring Valley), Zach Drews(Bloomington MN), Robbie Johnson, Mark Gerth, Kevin Eder
8 lap Heat 1 – Gerth(Menomonie), Adams, Prochnow, Eder(Ashland), Ashley Anderson(Elk Mound), Hessler, Johnson, Jesse Glenz
Heat 2 – Baxter, M. Anderson, Mahder, Hanson, Richardson, Drews, Balduc
WISSOTA Super Stocks
18 lap Feature – Ben Hillman(Menomonie), Tommy Richards(Mondovi), Jason Forehand(Eau Claire), Steve Thomas(Menomonie), Aaron Wilson(Eau Claire), Jesse Redetzke(Eau Claire), Bart Steffen(Eau Claire), Kenny Davis(Eau Claire), Luke Plank(Eau Claire), Dan Bork(Mondovi), Tony Falkner, Eric Olson, Dan Gullikson, Gunnar Watkins, Eric Schultz, Mike Keller, James Trantina III, Tom Karis, Mark Polen, Wayne Dean
8 lap Heat 1 – Thomas, Bork, Wilson, Redetzke, Trantina III(Sartell MN), Watkins, Steffen
Heat 2 – Forehand, Gullikson(Stacy MN), Keller(Menomonie), Olson(Ladysmith), Davis, Falkner, Rick Hallquist
Heat 3 – Karis(Menomonie), Richards, Hillman, Plank, Dean(Fall Creek), Schultz, Polen
WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds
15 lap Feature – Travis Anderson(Colfax), Shane Halopka(Greenwood), Nick Koehler(Bloomer), Josh Smith(Eau Claire), Grant Southworth(Bloomer), Jake Smith(Eau Claire), Jake Smeltzer(Menomonie), Mike Schnider(Rice Lake), Ben Schultz(Menomonie), Mark Thomas(Menomonie), Jason Richardson, Nathan Thums, Robbie Johnson, Kevin Smeltzer, James Green
8 lap Heat 1 – Southworth, Anderson, S. Halopka, Koehler, Schultz, Schnider, Green, Johnson, Richardson
Heat 2 – Jo. Smith, J. Smeltzer, Thomas, Ja. Smith, Kerry Halopka(Wheeler), Thums, Luke Shackleton, K. Smeltzer
WISSOTA Street Stocks
15 lap Feature – Jimmy Randall(Rice Lake), Mike Knudtson(Osseo), Sam Fankhauser(Rice Lake), Danny Richards(Mondovi), Adam Soltis(Ladysmith), Andrea Keeney(Ridgeland), Ron Hanestad(Glenwood City), Bill Engler(Hixton)
8 lap Heat – Fankhauser, Richards, Hanestad, Knudtson, Randall, Soltis, Keeney, Bill Skoug, Engler
10 lap Feature – Jason Havel(Rice Lake), Jeremy Dahl(Knapp), Hunter VanGilder(Rice Lake), Andrew Conklin(Ladysmith), Mike Grover(Chetek), Jake Hanson(Downing), Kendall Grover(Rice Lake), Kent Harmon(Downsville), George Richards(Mondovi), Jay Barnier(Chippewa Falls)
6 lap Heat 1 – Harmon, Richards, M. Grover, Conklin, K. Grover
Heat 2 – Dahl, VanGilder, Havel, Hanson, Barnier
10 lap Feature – Brent Voeltz(Glenwood City), Mark McQuisten(Elk Mound), Leslie Jackson(Wilson), Dean Butler(Wheeler), Dustin Shackleton(Menomonie)