Chateau hosts ‘Cedar River Races’

Published 1:12 am Saturday, August 30, 2008

Labor Day Weekend Stock Car Racing traditionally kicks off the start of the Fall Specials. Such was the case with Friday Nights AMSOIL Dirt Track Racing Series action at Chateau Raceway in Lansing “Powered by Miners Outdoor and Recreation” as the track rolled out its third annual “Cedar River Races” which featured stop eight on the “USMTS Caseys General Store Hunt for the Championship”. Joining the USMTS cars, which featured several local drivers, the track also featured three other classes. The Pizza Ranch Pure Stocks, Affordable Portables sponsored WISSOTA Street Stocks, and Power 96 WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds.

The USMTS drivers lead the way with a nice field of thirty-seven cars on hand to run a five heat, two consy set of preliminaries to set up a twenty-four car, forty lap main event. From the drop of the green flag in the first heat, right through to the checkered flag in the feature the field put on some of the most exciting racing of the season. In heat one Zach VanderBeek of New Sharon Iowa jumped from the outside of the front row to the front and held off Joe Wernecke of Dodge Center to grab the win. Donovan Lodge of Moline Illinois made an early move out of row two to second but on lap two he went to high in turn two and slipped all the way back to eighth. That was just the start of his bad luck on the night as it got even worse for him later in the night in his consy. He stated deep in the field in that one and had just about worked his way into a transfer spot to the “A” Main when he drove into somebody else’s mess. The right front suspension was torn up and left him waiting for the next stop on the tour. Meanwhile in heat two Todd Scharkey of Kasson out drove Jon Tesch of Watertown South Dakota in a classic side by side duel. Todd ran the top side while Jon stuck to the bottom. Tesch could get a good run into turns one and two lap after lap getting along side Scharkey down the back straightaway and into turn three. But each time Todd would out pull him out of four and win the race back to the line. The two ran six laps of that action and never once touched. Heat three went to Scott Green of Derby Kansas who got out in front of Steve Wetzstein of West Concord and was able to hold him off as the two duplicated the action of heat two over the second half of the race with Green staying to the top and making it work for the win. Mark Noble of Blooming Prairie ran down early leader Dan Bohr of Decorah Iowa on lap two to get to the front in heat four. Bohr would eventually have problems and fall back to the tail end of the field. Kelly Schryock of Fertile Iowa came up to second and put some pressure on Noble but could not get by him. The final heat belonged to Brandon Kenny of Woodward Oklahoma who out ran Mike Sorensen of Rochester for the lead on the drop of the green as the two came off the front row. It became a three car battle late as Tim Donlinger of Rochester worked his way from row three up to Sorensens back bumper. Tim made several runs and finally made the pass for second coming to the checkers out of turn four beating Mike to the line by the nose of the car.

Losing that race for second ended up costing Sorensen a spot in the feature. He ended up having to run one of the Consys to try and earn a spot in the feature which he actually did as he held off Dereck Ramirez of Woodward Oklahoma to win his Consy. Unfortunately his car was smoking badly over the latter stages of the race and it proved to be terminal as it was announced he’d put a hole in a piston in the engine and he would be a no show for the feature. The other Consy event featured a flag to flag win for Ryan Gustin of Marshalltown Iowa. Gustin rocketed from the outside of the front row to the front and than held off Tommy Weder Junior of Woodward Oklahoma who worked out of row two to finish second. Jake Neal of Omaha Nebraska had a nice run in that race as he started back in row five and worked his way all the way up to third.

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With the twenty-four car field lined up on the track according to passing points and there finishes in the consys, the top eight drivers had to step forward to redraw for their starting spots in the first four rows. After the first six stepped up and pulled there starting spots the final two numbers left to be pulled were one and eight. Tim Donlinger and Kelly Schryock were the two left to draw. One would start on the pole and the other back outside of row four. Donlinger drew first and pulled number eight leaving Schryock to start on the pole for the $2000 to win main event. For Donlinger its been an interesting year at Lansing, in five previous stops at the track this season he had finished second in the feature each time. It seemed the dirt oval was against him, or least wanted to see him work harder that coming off of the front row if he was going to break his streak of runner up finishes.

As the field lined up it was Brandon Kenny who would start outside of Schryock. The two brought the field to the green for the forty lap feature and it was Kenny off the outside who took the early advantage with Kelly falling in line second ahead of VanderBeek, Tesch, Noble and Scharkey. Donlingers tough draw got worse as he was forced up high on the first lap and fell completely out of the top ten. Up front the leaders were picking there lines. Kenny went to the top with Kelly worked down low and the two spent several laps dueling side by side. Schryock lead lap eleven in one of those side by side battles but Kenny went back to point one lap later. Behind those two Tesch moved ahead of VanderBeek for third and closed up on the top two to make it a three way battle. Steve Wetzstein cracked the top five on lap sixteen as he was picking his way forward from a row six starting spot and Donlinger was trying to move back forward as he came up to sixth behind Steve. The caution flag came out just short of halfway on lap nineteen when Mark Noble had mechanical problems and his car stalled at the top of turn four. Off the restart Schryock dug down low again on Kenny and finally on lap twenty-one he got a gun run off the bottom of turn two and slide up in front of Brandon to take over the lead. Behind the top two Wetzstein and Donlinger were still trying to pick there way forward and with twelve laps to go they moved up to third and fourth behind Kelly and Brandon. The third and final caution of the race came out on lap thirty-two when a slow car was unable to clear the track. Schryock got a good jump on the restart and the trio behind him fanned out three wide to duel for second. Kenny was eventually schuffled back to fourth with Donlinger getting by Wetzstein for second. With just seven laps remaining and Schryock off to a nice lead it looked like it would be six visits – six second place finishes for Donlinger this season at Lansing. But Tim went out and in just three laps pulled up on Kelly and as they completed lap thirty-six they were side by side, with Donlinger on the bottom of the track. It was lining up for a fantastic finish. The two were still running side by side as they crossed the line with two to go but as they came out of turn two and headed around for the white flag Donlinger got some good bite and pulled to the front and took the lead away from Kelly. Donlinger took the white with a couple car lengths between him and Schryock and finally got that first feature win of 2008 at Chateau and it came in one of the biggest races of the season that the track hosts. Wetzstein held on for third ahead of Tesch, Kenny and VanderBeek.

Meanwhile in the Power 96 WISSOTA Midwest Modifeids Kenny Wytaske of Lansing put together a couple of nice runs as he took his heat and the feature for the sweep. Both races he had the benefit of starting on the front row. That along with a set of races that ran caution free he was able to get out to a lead and run and hide leaving the field to duke it out over second. Dustin Steinbrink of Austin ran second early in the race before falling to third behind AJ Wiste of Adams. Albert Wytaske of Lansing finished fourth ahead of Greg Pfeifer Junior of Austin and Brandon Davis of Medford. Davis, who won the classes other heat event earlier in the night, had worked his way into the top three until mechanical problems slowed him on the races final lap dropping him back to his sixth place finishing spot. For Wytaske it was his third feature win of the season.

AJ Zvorak of Blooming Prairie picked up his sixth feature win of the year as he lead flag to flag in a very short field of Affordable Portables WISSOTA Street Stocks. Just six cars showed up for the class with Jesse Stahl finishing second in the feature after picking up the classes lone heat win.

Pizza Ranch Pure Stocks had a field of twelve cars on hand with Billy Steinberg of Kasson scoring his fourth feature win of the year. He also picked up a heat win giving him a sweep for the first time this season as well. Stacy Krohnberg of Walters lead the first two laps of the feature after starting on the pole. Billy was able to use a restart on lap three to his advantage as he jumped to the front when the green came back out. Tyler Peterson of Hollandale moved past Krohnberg for second. The classes other heat winner was Wayne Nelson of Freeborn.

The Fall Specials Continue next Friday and Saturday Night at Lansing with the “2nd Annual Buzz Festival”. Full shows both nights with the tracks full complement of six classes on hand for both nights of action. The track will also host a pair of specials the last weekend of September with the “3rd Annual Midwest Modified Fall Nationals”. Friday and Saturday Night, September 26 and 27 will be another full two nights of racing action with all six of the tracks regular classes participating in that weekends activities as well.

Weekly Results for Chateau Raceway Powered by Miner Outdoor and Recreation

Pizza Ranch Pure Stocks

Feature- Billy Steinberg-Kasson, Tyler Peterson-Hollandale, Stacy Krohnberg-Walters, Brandon Shaner-Owatonna, Brady Krohnberg-Walters, Sammie Fromm-Owatonna, Wayne Nelson-Freeborn, Samantha Stark-Austin, Keith Weber-Austin, James Connors-Waseca, Kevin Vogt-Rose Creek (DNS: James Weber-Austin)

Heat 1 – Nelson, Fromm, B Krohnberg, K Weber, Shaner

Heat 2 – Steinberg, Peterson, Vogt, S Krohnberg, Connors, Stark

Affordable Portable WISSOTA Street Stocks

Feature – AJ Zvorak-Blooming Prairie, Jesse Stahl-Austin, Nathan Schumacher-Blooming Prairie, Jason Barber-New Richland, Matt Paczkowski-Hollandale, Mike Kohn-Hollandale

Heat 1 – Stahl, Zvorak, Schumacher, Paczkowski, Barber, Kohn

Power 96 WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds

Feature – Kenny Wytaske-Lansing, AJ Wiste-Adams, Dustin Steinbrink-Austin, Albert Wytaske-Lansing, Greg Pfeifer Jr-Austin, Brandon Davis-Medford, Bryan Hernandez-Blooming Prairie, Joel Alberts-Mantorville, Jim Arnold-Dodge Center, Joe Horgdahl-Kasson, Pete Bushman-Pine Island, John Rishavy-Owatonna, Rick Toutges-Byron, Bob Fisher-Lyle, Gary Wilde-Austin, Tyron Friese-Waseca, Travis Wytaske-Rochester

Heat 1 – Davis, Steinbrink, Pfeifer Jr, Horgdahl, Wilde, Toutges, T Wytaske, Friese (DQ: Rishavy)

Heat 2 – K Wytaske, A Wytaske, Wiste, Alberts, Hernandez, Bushman, Arnold, Fisher

USMTS Modifieds

Feature – Tim Donlinger-Rochester, Kelly Shryock-Fertile IA, Steve Wetzstein-West Concord, Jon Tesch-Watertown SD, Brandon Kenny-Woodward OK, Zach VanderBeek-New Sharon IA, Jacob Dahle-Morristown, Todd Scharkey-Kasson, Tommy Weder Jr-Woodward OK, Ryan Gustin-Marshalltown IA, Dereck Ramirez-Woodward OK, Corey Dripps-Waterloo IA, Jake Neal-Omaha NE, Al Hejna-Clear Lake IA, Richie Gustin Jr-Gilman IA, Les Duellman-Winona, Doug Hillson-Blooming Prairie, Ron Ver Beek-Oskaloosa IA, Bryan Rowland-Woodward OK, Joe Wernecke-Dodge Center, Scott Green-Derby KS, Alan Mondus-Lakeville, Tommy Myer-Blooming Prairie, Mark Noble-Blooming Prairie (DNS: Mike Sorensen-Rochester)

Consy 1 – Sorensen, Ramirez, Ver Beek, Hejna, Rowland, Dripps, Joey Schaefer-Waterloo IA, Greg Jensen-Albert Lea, Joel Alberts-Mantorville, Jay Poidinger-Somerset WI, James Parker-Dodge Center, Brad Bakken-Garner IA, Brian Shaw-Brownsdale

Consy 2 – Ry Gustin, Weder Jr, Neal, Duellman, Hillson, Mondus, Myer, Josh Reisch-Luverne, Dan Bohr-Cresco, Dave Wytaske Jr-Mapleview, Donovan Lodge-Moline IL, Dean Mahlsted-Clear Lake IA

Heat 1 – VanderBeek, Wernecke, Dahle, Bakken, Hillson, Lodge, Jensen, Reisch

Heat 2 – Scharkey, Tesch, Ri Gustin Jr, Ry Gustin, Shaw, Poidinger, Mondus, Parker

Heat 3 – Green, Wetzstein, Duellman, Ver Beek, Myer, Wytaske Jr, Schaefer

Heat 4 – Noble, Schryock, Ramirez, Mahlstedt, Dripps, Rowland, Bohr

Heat 5 – Kenny, Donlinger, Sorensen, Weder Jr, Hejna, Neal, Alberts