Blascyk, Satter, Robinson, Saurer and Hoium Win at Viking; Rodin and Aberle Win Tours at Devils Lake
It was free admission to Viking Speedway courtesy of central Minnesota Napa stories. It was hot, windy evening at the half-mile, but track prep workers did a good job keeping the dust down for the most part. I’ve been to tracks that turn into a complete dust bowl in weather like that.
Viking wrapped up the show in about 2 1/2 hours and did a nice job on a hot evening of keeping things moving along.
Randy Laage of Brooten and Josh Muzik of Alexandria led the 12-car Wissota Midwest Modified feature to the green.
Four-time national champion Travis Saurer has been the hottest Wissota Midwest Modified locally; he won at I-94 Sure Step Speedway on Friday and won the $600 to win special at Viking last week.
Laage had the lead in that race last week before pulling in with mechanical issues.
Blascyk wasted no time getting to the front make the pass in turns three and four on the opening lap.
Laage settled into second with Muzik in third.
A three-way battle between Travis Saurer, Shawn Olson of Alexandria and Avery Anderson was taking place for third, that soon turned into a two-car tussle between Saurer and Anderson.
Blascyk took off in his own area code for the lead as Laage and Muzik held their spots in second and third, respectively. Soon, however, Saurer would work to close the gap on Muzik for third.
There was some contact between Travis Saurer and Muzik for third, and Travis Saurer would pull in off the backstretch seconds later with a problem.
A caution came out with five to go to erase Blascyk’s commanding advantage. Anderson was having a good run but blew a right-rear tire and went off the track on the backstretch; he likely had a top five finish had that notoccurred.
Boy did Taylor Bitzan of Brandon look good, perhaps his bestrun of his young career. He moved into the top five on the restart and then took over third and was pressuing Muzik for second as Laage slid back.
Blascyk reassumed control after the restart and won by 3.7 seconds over Muzik, who had another solid run. It was Blascyk’s second win of the year; he has finished first or second in eight of his 12 starts this season.
Muzik was runner up for a second straight week as he continues to run well. By my count, Bitzan’s third-place finish tied a career-best as he made a good run from seventh. Ron Saurer of Dalton went from eighth to fourth while Mr. Consistent, Olson, recorded yet another top five taking fifth.
Inside polesitter Jeff Ekdahl had trouble before the race and pulled in. Jason Thimmesh inherited the pole but spun in turns one and two; fortunately no one else was collected.
That moved defending Viking champion Ryan Satter of Dent to the outside pole and he stormed to the lead.
Kyle Dykhoff of Starbuck, the winner Friday at I-94, worked past Roger Berkness of Eagle Bend into second.
J.J. Nieuwbeerta of Alexandria was making some noise, and worked past Berkness for third. Aberdeen driver Scott Witkowski settled into fifth.
Satter just checked out on the field during the caution-free feature, leading Dykhoff by a straightaway and winning by 3.489 seconds. Dykhoff has finished second in all three of his starts at Viking, the first two came during the Steffes Street Stock Tour.
Nieuwbeerta finished a season-best third with Berkness taking fourth. Thimmesh rebounded from the early caution to finish in fifth, topping Witkowski.
A note on the street stocks – last week there were only six on hand, but the numbers rebounded with 14 this week with 12 taking the green in the feature.
13 Short Trackers were on hand with Fransis Olmscheid of Little Sauk and Kevin Wahl of Fergus Falls leading the field. The race got off to a rocky start in turns three and four with several cars nearly wrecking. The only casuality was Olmscheid who spun and was then pushed in after the caution.
Shawn Robinson’s #00 machine made a quick surge to the front past Kevin Wahl. Robinson, from Dalton, started way back in seventh but it was clear he was fast from the drop of the green.
Tristan Raths of Donnelly and David Wahl of Fergus Falls dueled for the third spot in a good race, and there was a good three-car battle for fifth between Maddie Swenson, Jeff Hanson of Barrett and Raths (22).
Robinson had a nice lead but Wahl was eating into the advantage, cutting it to about a half-second on the final lap. Robinson would hold on for his first win of the year with Kevin Wahl settling for second. Raths won the battle for third over David Wahl with Jeff Hanson taking the fifth spot.
Only eight Wissota Super Stocks took the green in the feature, and Jack Koranda of Bluffton set the pace early over Matt Miller of Glenwood. Last week’s winner and defending Viking champion Trevor Saurer of Dalton soon challenged Miller for third.
Koranda opened up several car lengths on Miller who had his hands full with Saurer who was working on the lower line.
Koranda’s lead was erased with Jim Fuchs spun his #31 car in turn two with seven to go. And it soon it was Saurer who made the charge for the lead. Working the lower line, Saurer made the pass of Koranda; Sauer made up a lot of ground in turns three and four.
Karter Reents of Glenwood had worked his way into contention. Running the very bottom line, Reents passed Miller and then set his sights on Koranda. With four to go he made the pass into second.
Saurer was more than happy to see the battle for second as he opened up a 7-8 car length lead on second. Reents settled into that spot with Koranda and Miller still dueling for third.
After going to a higher lane last week to pass Jeff Crouse, Saurer stuck the 21 to the bottom this week and that proved to be the difference in a 2.05 second victory. Reents ran a strong second with Miller topping Koranda for third. Jeff Crouse of Alexandria was fifth.
Brett Hoium of Villard took the early lead in the Wissota Modified feature as Josh Thoennes of Nelson was giving chase. Travis Saurer of Elizabeth went to the high line and went around Thoennes for second. Defending Viking champion Brady Gerdes of Villard was also moving into contention in the top three.
Hoium stayed up high with Saurer closing the gap. Gerdes was also giving chase.
A few times, Saurer would make a run in turns one and two and get real close to Hoium, but each time, Hoium’s momentum would open a 2-3 car length advantage.
Hoium would prevail for his first win of 2022 with Saurer settling for second. Gerdes was third. Dusty Bitzan of Brandon was fourth and Josh Thoennes fifth.
Viking is off next week as the Rev’d Up Country Fest is taking place at the fairgrounds. Next racing action is July 2.
Aberle, Rodin Win Tour Stops at Devils Lake
Dan Aberle of Finley edged Jonny Carter of Lisbon at the line to win the Steffes Street Stock Tour stop at Devils Lake Speedway on Saturday near Crary, N.D. Aberle is the eighth different winner in eight nights on the Steffes Tour this season.
Aberle’s margin of victory was 0.243 seconds. Friday’s River Cities winner, Kyle Anderson of Jamestown, was third. Billie Christ of Jamestown was fourth and Justin Vogel of Brooten was fifth. Vogel has finished in the top five at all eight tour stops this season. Kasey Ussatis of Nome was sixth.
Tucker Pederson of East Grand Forks was the Hard Charger, going from 18th to seventh.
Defending Rebel Midwest Mod Tour champion Lucas Rodin of Marion prevailed in that feature over Jory Berg of Grand Forks. Rodin is also the defending Wissota Midwest Modified national champion and also was the 2021 Wissota 100 champion in the division.
Nate Reinke of Lisbon went from sixth to second while Jason Grimes finished fourth. Eric Haugland of Lawton was fifth after starting 15th with Corey Storck of Morris was sixth.
Tanner Theis of New Rockford was the Hard Charger, going from 21st to eighth.
The Steffes Tour returns to River Cities Speedway next Friday while the Rebel Midwest Mod Tour is at Norman County Raceway on Thursday.
--Torey Fischer of West Fargo finished second in the IMCA Sport Mod feature Saturday night at North Central Speedway in Brainerd.
--Alex Truscinski of Greenbush topped Dexter Dvergsten of Greenbush for the POWRI Minn-Kota Lightning Sprint feature at Greenbush Race Park on Sautrday. Mark Williams of Grand Forks was third while Kate Taves of Detroit Lakes was fourth.
Jordan Duray of Halma won the Wissota Modified feature over Rick Delaine of Stony Mountain, Man. Aaron Holtan of Newfolden was third and Aaron Blacklance of Thief River Falls fourth.
--Dylan Johnson of Durbin topped Ty Wilke of Detroit Lakes for the INEX Legends win.
--I’ve heard a few grumblings about tracks cancelling because of the heat this Sunday. There are three primary reasons for this decision: first, the stands will be empty as no one wants to sit out in 100-degree plus heat; second, you will never get enough moisture in the track in conditions like that; and third a track like that can eat up tires. Plus, do the drivers really want to be there either when it’s ungodly hot? Of course not. No way a track breaks even on a night like that.