Monday, September 5, 2011
St. Croix Valley Celebrates Fans
ST. CROIX FALLS, Wis. – With the truncated season winding down, the new St. Croix Valley Raceway honored its fans with a full card of racing action and dozens upon dozens of fan giveaways. While the fans were soaking up free gifts from Jerry’s East Coast Flavor, the Stop-A-Sec, the Dalles House, Al’s Diner, CR Convenience, Wayne’s Café and Pizza Man, Ryan Olson gobbled up another Pro Modified feature win. The Northern Vintage Stockcar Racers were also on hand with cars competing in two divisions.
On a perfect night for racing, the Future Fours were the first feature following the Raceway’s customary playing of God Bless America. Heat race winners Chris Rick and Kyle Dahlheimer led the eleven car field to flagman Shaun Cimfl’s green flag with Dahlheimer getting the early jump on the field. After starting sixth, Ben Kaphing shot up to third on the first lap and worked around Rick for second on lap two. After following Dahlheimer for a few circuits, Kaphing nabbed the top spot and kept it for the duration. Dahlheimer stayed in second except for a late race pass when he yielded briefly to Joel Kruse. With all twelve laps in the books, Kaphing had his second trophy of the summer and Dahlheimer had gotten back in front of Kruse, who had to settle for third. Rick crossed the line fourth with Doug Kruse rounding out the top five.
Up next for The Valley was the Pure Stock main event, with Kyle Hallin and Brandon Davis leading the nine car field to the opening green. Hallin looked strong out front through the first seven laps with Davis giving chase and heat race winner Justin Rick, Steve Baker and Krysta Swearingen all battling for third. On lap eight, Hallin dropped to the tail, handing the lead to Davis. Davis cruised the final laps to his first St. Croix Valley Raceway win of the season. Baker crossed the line second in front of Swearingen, heat race winner Josh Bach, and Jon Wigchers.
In Vintage competition, Mike Wilson of Red Wing, MN picked up the Full Bodied division feature win from his third row staring spot while Oakdale’s Butch Bethke raced his #31 to the Super Modified victory.
The upstart UMSS Traditional sprints fielded a six car field for the eleventh race of their inaugural season. August 5 winner Tommy Kamrath led from the pole for laps one through four until July 29 winner Rob Caho, Jr. shot to the point. Once of front, the sprint car veteran Caho settled into a groove and never allowed Kamrath to mount a serious challenge to reclaim the lead. At the completion of the fifteen lap exhibition main event, Caho had secured his second TSCS trophy on the season besting Kamrath, Kevin Bradwell, Jeff Pellersels, Jack Clack and Aaron Wisch.
In the Pro Stock division, Willie Johnson followed up on his strong showing from his previous appearance at The Valley with an even better effort on Friday. After picking up a heat race win, Johnson sat on the front row alongside of Cody Campeau for the twenty lap Pro Stock finale. Johnson bolted to the point at the drop of the green with Jeff Heintz in tow. Behind Johnson, the big mover was second heat race winner Shawn Kammerud. After starting inside the third row, Kammerud had worked up to third by lap six and into second two laps later. While Kammerud was working the field, Johnson was patient and calm through a series of restarts, each time fending off all challengers and keeping Kammerud in chase mode for the majority of the race. At the red-and-white checkers, Johnson had scored his first career Pro Stock feature win in clean-sweep fashion. Kammerud finished as the runner-up ahead of Campeau, Heintz and Marcus Simonson.
Making their final appearance of the season on the Raceway, the Pro Modifieds capped the evening with a season high 23 car main event. Mike Mueller and Jason Schill paced the field to green with Schill showing the fast way around the quarter-mile for the first handful of laps. Early on, three-time winner Ryan Olson was working up from fifth and tenth starting Dan Wheeler was slicing through the field as well. Just prior to halfway, Olson found the front with Wheeler and Mueller giving chase. With the track sporting three grooves, drivers were jockeying for position throughout the field, and as the laps wound down fifteenth starting Josh Bazey made his appearance in the top five. Out front, Olson would never relinquish his lead through a number of cautions and posted his fourth win in the Pro Modified division in five attempts. Wheeler settled for second in front of Bazey, Mueller and Lucas Milz.
After taking next week off, St. Croix Valley Raceway will return to action for “The Final Showdown”, a two day event scheduled for Friday, September 16 and Saturday, September 17. The Friday show will be comprised of Future Fours, Pure Stocks and UMSS Traditional Sprint Cars in competition as well as another exhibition from the Northern Vintage Stockcar Racers. Those same divisions will return for a second full show the following night along with the third appearance by the UMSS winged sprint cars. “Thunder in the Valley” part three will mark the final appearance of the year for the sprint cars in the north metro region. The final event in 2011 at St. Croix Valley will be the “Trick ‘r Treat Enduro”, plus the rescheduled “Wrestle & Race” show featuring the American Wrestling Federation on October 1. Opening bell for the wrestling is at 3:00 p.m., with racing to follow. Kids are encouraged to wear their Halloween costumes, as there will be trick or treating on the track with the drivers after the racing action.
Friday, September 2, 2011
Future Fours, Feature: Ben Kaphing, Kyle Dahlheimer, Joel Kruse, Chris Rick, Doug Kruse, Kris Kaphing, Dan Strobach, Duane Roberts, Steve Sutton, Damon Roberts, Hope Tucker.
Pure Stocks, Feature: Brandon Davis, Steve Baker, Krysta Swearingen, Josh Bach, Jon Wigchers, Justin Rick, Kyle Hallin, Greg Hallin, Dennis Stordahl.
Vintage – NVSR Full Body division: John “Butch” Bethke, Mike Bjorklund, Dennis Olson, Mark Peine, Ken Sabby, Ricky Lipinski, Kevin Lipsky
Vintage – NVSR Super Modified division: Mike Wilson, Ray Sandgren, Wally Stoltzman, Mike “Pappy” Pappenfus, Tim Stoltzman, Joe L’Allier, Paul Dolphy
UMSS Traditional Sprints, Feature: Rob Caho, Tom Kamrath, Kevin Bradwell, Jeff Pellersels, Jack Clark, Aaron Wisch.
Pro Stocks, Feature: Willie Johnson, Shawn Kammerud, Cody Campeau, Jeff Heintz, Marcus Simonson, Robbie Cooper, Denny Stordahl, Frank Fabio, Chris Gorka, Miles Meidlinger, Ben Hanke, Adam Ayotte
Pro Modifieds, Feature: Ryan Olson , Dan Wheeler, Josh Bazey, Mike Mueller, Lucas Milz, Jason Schill, Doug Merrill, Tony Schill, Kyle Steffen, Kevin Marlett, Gabe Kennedy, Jason Haugerud, Kyle Matuska, Corey Fogleson, Myles McEvers, Vince Corbin, Jared Gorka, Doug Toepper, Mike Halvorsen, Dan Larson, Greg Arnt, Shawn Carlson, Tucker Breitung.