Alex Truscinski, Miller, Peterson, Wilke & Borg Lead Buffalo River Speedway Victors
Buffalo River Speedway near Glyndon wrapped up its 2021 season with season championship night on Sunday. A good 95-car field was on hand at the 1/4-mile oval.
It was definitely a learning year — understandably so — for the new Buffalo River Speedway management. Some things worked, some didn’t, and the offseason can sort out those things. I do know people were happy to see racing back at Buffalo River this year and I look forward to seeing what’s ahead in 2022.
It took more than a dozen years for Will Miller of Sacred Heart to get his first career win, which he accomplished earlier this year. He didn’t have to wait nearly as long for career win number two — a few months, in fact. He took the lead from the outside pole and just dominated the race.
Miller won by 3.412 seconds over Chad Visser of Ironton, Minn., for his second win. Will was a happy camper, and deservedly so. That is a low-budget team that doesn’t spend big money on racing but does the best it can. So to get two feature wins and three heat race wins this season is a real boost to that group.
Brad Orvedal of Fargo picked up his 23rd top five finish of 2021 by taking third, and is the 2021 Buffalo River Speedway points champion.
Scott Herron of Brainerd was fourth and Skyla Miller of Harwood picked up her 10th top five of 2021 by taking fifth.
Taylor Sargent of Gwinner looked like he was on his way to his first career INEX Legends win — that was, until Tye Wilke of Detroit Lakes started his charge.
Sargent led the first several laps but Wilke, who had started fourth but slid back, was moving. He went from fifth to second in one lap with a huge power of momentum down the backstretch.
On a restart, Wilke powered to the lead past Sargent and was not threatened the rest of the way as his dominating season continued.
One driver who has run well when I’ve seen him this year is Joshua Wiest of Jamestown. He finished second on Sunday and recorded his 15th top five finish of the year. Another rapidly-improving driver, Zander Bauer, came up from eighth to third. Dylan Johnson of Durbin was fourth and Sargent rounded out the top five.
There probably weren’t many happy campers after the IMCA Sport Mod feature. Several cautions, some beating and banging in the field led to a not very clean race. Except for Jake Hagemann of Fort Ripley, who started on the inside pole and picked up his fifth win of the year.
Matthew Clark of West Fargo was the early leader in the sport mods from the outside pole before being overtaken by Hagemann. Matt Talley was running in the top five but slid high off turns one and two and that ended his hopes for a win. He pulled off shortly after.
Two usual contenders — Scott Jacobson of Fargo and Chris VanMil of Barnesville — had worked into the top five.
Jacobson and VanMil battled for second as Clark started to fade. Vince Jegtvig of Glyndon was also running in the top five.
Jacobson cleared VanMil and worked to close on Hagemann. But Hagemann never lost grip of the lead and won. Jacobson finished second, VanMil third. Jacob Jordan of Brainerd came from 10th to four while Justin Jones of Bemidji, who had an adventurous race to say the least, rounded out the top five.
Scott Jacobson edged his son, Kelly for the season points championship (unofficially).
I don’t see Hagemann race much, but he’s been good at his appearances in this area. He picked up a big $1,000 win at the 40-lapper at Red River Valley Speedway on July 18.
Rob VanMil of Barnesville looked like he was on his way to the IMCA Stock Car win, but Brennan Borg of Harwood had other ideas. VanMil had a little breathing room but Borg was working his customary low line, and eating into the lead.
Borg made a charge out of turn two and VanMil slid high and slowed. Borg assumed the lead and VanMil would pull off.
Borg won with Kalvin Kesselberg of Ada having a good run from eighth to second. Brandon Schmidt of Hillsboro, Chad Hunterman of Moorhead and Brody Carlsrud of Moorehad rouned out the top five.
The IMCA Mod feature was a hard-fought battle for the win between Jamie Schulz of Harwood and Cody Peterson of Glyndon.
Schulz ran a higher line with Peterson working low, and that duel went on for several laps. Jesse Skalicky of Fargo was battling Luke Johnson of Moorhead for third.
Peterson was persistent on the bottom line and it paid off as he made the pass for the lead and the win which was his first of 2021. Schulz settled for second.
I was happy to see Luke Johnson get a top three finish. He’s been plagued with miserable luck in his rookie year in the IMCA mods, but looked good on Sunday.
Skalicky was in a tight battle with Allen Kent of West Fargo for the IMCA Mod points title. Unofficially, by my calculations, Skalicky won the title by one point.
Shannon George of Bagley and Shawn Robinson of Dalton had a good battle for the Short Tracker feature lead. For a while Robinson looked like the quicker car but
Curtis Huseth of Underwood was second, Cory Nelson of Leonard was third. Hunter Goulet of Fargo was fourth and Robinson fifth.
Congrats to Levi Lease of Harwood on his first track championship; he plans to move into the hobby stocks next season.
The 40-lap POWRi Minn-Kota Lightning Sprint feature capped off the night and season at BRS. And the pole sitter, Alex Truscinski of Greenbush, who has been really fast at BRS this season, would take home the top prize.
For a while, Alan Truscinski of Greenbush was his primary challenger, but veteran Dexter Dvergsten, who started fifth, moved into to challenge.
Garrison Miller of West Fargo looked like he had a potential top five finished but flipped his #5M machine in turns one and two. He was OK but the car left on the hook.
Alex Truscinski was the class of the field and picked up his fifth win of the year. Dvergsten and Alan Truscinski rounded out the top three. Jason Berg of West Fargo started seventh but worked up to fourth while Travis Surerus of Fargo was fifth.
Here is an interesting note about the Lightning Sprints — there is a good deal of youth in the class. In the field were Domnick Crocker (age 12), Weston Olson (13), Kate Taves (14) and Garrison Miller (17) were in the field on Sunday.
Austin Pierce is one some kind of roll in the Buffalo Wild Wings NOSA Sprint class. He won his seventh feature in a row to close out the year on Friday at River Cities Speedway.
Speaking of Dexter Dvergsten, he won the lightning sprint feature. Justin Jones of Bemidji topped Rich Pavlicek of Casselton for the IMCA Sport Mod.
Tyler McDougall of Hawley won the IMCA Stock Car feature. Stock car rookie Brody Carlsrud of Moorhead picked up his best career finish in a stock car, crossing the line in the runner-up spot.
The NOSA Sprints have three shows left this year — at Casino Speedway in Watertown on Friday and Huset’s Speedway in Brandon, S.D., on Saturday and Sunday. Brendan Mullen of Grand Forks holds a 13-point lead over Wade Nygaard in the standings; Jade Hastings, the defending series champ, is third, 48 points behind.