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Carter Edges Dykhoff in Steffes Street Stock Tour Thriller at Viking Speedway



The Steffes Street Stock Tour has produced some outstanding racing since its inception in 2020, and Saturday night at Viking Speedway in Alexandria was another example.


A nice 31-car field gathered for the Florian Sprinzel Memorial, which paid $1,500 to the winner of the Wissota Street Stock feature. And what a race it turned out to be.


I will say the track was in nice shape, and if Viking can keep that up for the summer the racing should be pretty good.


Eric Riley of Morris took the early lead but was soon overtaken by Braden Brauer of Rochester. Brauer opened up a nice lead on the field. Kyle Genett from Auburndale, Wis., soon worked into third and pressured Riley. Hunter Carter of West Fargo and Kolton Brauer of Rochester were battling for fifth.


The first caution with 12 to go erased Brauer’s hit lead and brought a who slew of quality drivers into contention, which included Justin Vogel of Brooten, Jonny Carter of Lisbon and Kyle Dykhoff of Starbuck.


That included Genett, who worked by Brauer on the restart.


The second caution, in this case a red flag, came out with nine to go when Avery Wendt’s 4#4 machine ended up on its roof in turns three and four. It wasn’t a hard roll but did its share of damage.


Shortly after the restart, however, Genett slowed in turns one and two and would pull in, ending his hopes for a feature win. After that, it turned into a battle between the Brauer brothers up front. But, Dykhoff and Hunter Carter were far fro through in contending, and Vogel diligently worked a higher line looking to move up.


There was a lot of two and three wide racing with a lot of cars near the front – Braden Brauer, Hunter Carter, Riley, Kolton Brauer and Dykhoff being among the group.


Friday’s winner at I94, Ty Agen of Chippewa Falls, was involved in an incident in turn two and suffered damage, ending his night for the third caution with five left.


Hunter Carter fought back on the outside on the restart and the two were running side by side when another caution came out with five to go – and the racing really got close as it turned into a three-car shootout between Braden Brauer, Hunter Carter and Dykhoff. Dykhoff was using a slightly higher line and it was coming around. Those three went three-widea few times, and eventually the battle turned into a duel between Hunter Carter and Dykhoff.


Dykhoff had the advantage with one to go but Hunter Carter was determined to make a last lap challenge. Coming off of turn four on the final lap Hunter Carter got a strong run at the bottom and edged Dykhoff at the line for the win, which was reminiscent of Riley’s win by a few inches over Jonny Carter in 2020. A video of the finish, taken by my dated IPhone 11, is below.




It was Hunter Carter’s first feature win since coming out of retirement in 2020. He has always been a formidable foe – he is a former winner of the King of the Dirt at I-94 – and showed he will be a force on the tour again this summer. He was one happy guy in victory lane. And hats off to several street stock drivers who battled for position, running side by side for several laps without wrecking each other.


Braden Brauer was third, Kolton Brauer was fourth and Justin Vogel topped Jonny Carter fof fifth. It was a terrific race with battles going all the way back to 10th-12th place.


Cody Lee and his family in victory lane.

Cody “The Cobra” Lee of Starbuck was hungry. Looking to rebound from a tough 2021 campaign, Lee and his sister, Haley, switched to SSR Chassis for their Wissota Midwest Modifieds for the 2022 campaign.


There was no denying Lee on Saturday. Austin Chyba of Browerville was the early leader with Ron Saurer of Dalton – driving the green and white car this week -- in the hunt.


Lee, who started seventh on the 22-car field, didn’t take long to get to the front. He was in fifth after an early caution


Lee, Chyba and Saurer went three-wide into turn three, and it took only a few laps for Lee to take over the top spot. Once he did, he checked out to a straightaway lead over Chyba.


While there wasn’t much drama for the lead with Lee blistering the half-mile, there was plenty of racing for position in the field. Shawn Olson of Alexandria, the defending Midwest modified champion at Viking, settled into third.


Ron Saurer, Brock Gronwold of Fergus Falls and Travis Saurer of Elizabeth were racing very hard for the fourth spot, going three-wide at times.


Lee was in total control, and Chyba had a few car lengths over Olson for third. Gronwold had moved into fourth and he and Travis Saurer both passed Olson. Also battling for a spot in the top five was Justin Froemming of Elbow Lake.


I’ll tell you, Gronwold and Travis Saurer went after it hard for third as Chyba had a couple of car lengths advantage for second. Froemming was battling Olson for fifth.


With two to go, the battle between Travis Saurer and Gronwold intensified, and Gronwold slid off of turns one and two as Saurer pulled beside him. The yellow was charged to Gronwold – honestly there appeared to be some slight contact from looking at the replay – and he pulled in. Talk about some hard racing, and Gronwold and Travis Saurer don’t back down from anyone.


On the restart Lee reestablished control by opening a half a straightway lead on Chyba on his way to the win. It was his second of the year, with his first coming in Las Vegas this winter. Like I said the Cobra was hungry.


Chyba took home second with the always-consistent Olson taking third. Travis Saurer was fourth and Froemming was fifth. One night, Josh Muzik of Brandon went from 18th to ninth on the field.


Danny Bayer of Elrosa looked fast from the get go in the Wissota Modifieds. He took the lead from the outside pole in the modified main event and led every lap for his first win of the season.


Travis Saurer started on the inside pole, and in the past when he’s been on the front row it usually signals a win in the mods. But the #21x hasn’t seemed to find the right combination in recent years, perhaps a tribute to how tough the competition has become.


Jason Thoennes of Brandon worked by Saurer on the bottom and soon, defending Viking champion Brady Gerdes of Villard began working on Saurer. Dusty Bitzan of Brandon soon joined the party.


Thoennes, meanwhile, was working on Bayer for the lead. Both drivers ran the lower line, and eventually Bayer opened up a 3-4 car length lead. The best battle was between Bitzan and Saurer and Bitzan eventually took over fourth. Saurer was left to contend with the Millenial Farmer, Zach Johnson of Lowry.


Bayer had some breathing room as Gerdes worked a higher line try to catch Thoennes. There was no catching Bayer, however as he recorded a fairly dominant win. Thoennes, Gerdes, Bitzan and Johnson rounded out the top five in the caution-free main event.


Waylon Current made the long two-hour plus trip from Bemidji worthwhile with an impressive Short Tracker win. He started eighth. Early leader Kevin Wahl of Fergus Falls was strong early but Current was simply faster on this night as he picked up the win.


David Wahl of Fergus Falls was the car on the move, starting 12th but working up to third at the checkered behind Current and Kevin Wahl. Jacob Hagen of Elbow Lake and Brent Engler of Barrett rounded out the top five.


Jeff Crouse of Alexandria took the early lead in the Wissota Super Stock feature. Week 1 winner Matt Miller of Glenwood would take over the top spot with defending Viking champion Trevor Saurer of Dalton moving into second.


A restart proved vital. Miller made one slip up – getting up into the marbles in turns one and two – and that opened the door for Saurer to take over the top spot. Miller tried and tried to regain the top spot but to no avail.


Crouse was in third but right behind him was a battle between a pair of younger drivers, Karter Reents of Glenwood and Jack Koranda of Bluffton, who ran side by side for several laps.


Trevor Saurer had some breathing room over Miller, who had a comfortable advantage on Crouse. Reents moved into fourth and then attempted to make a charge at Crouse. Moving into the top five was Trent Brutger of Watkins.


Saurer picked up his first win of 2022 with Miller settling for second. Crouse, Reents and Brutger rounded out the top five.


Notes

--The Brauer brothers, Braden and Kolton, are 17 and 15 years old, respectively. Their dad Jeff was an outstanding street stock and super stock driver out of southeast Minnesota for many years. Ty Agen of Chippewa Falls, 16, won the tour stop on Friday. Lots of good young talent in the street stocks.

--Congrats to Tyler Peterson of Horace for picking up the Wissota Modified feature win Saturday night at Greenbush Race Park. Weston Ramsrud of Bagley won the Wissota Street Stock feature while Chris Edmonds of Larimore won the Wissota Midwest Modified feature.

--Congrats to Greg Jose of Grand Forks who won the Wissota Street Stock feature Saturday at Devils Lake Speedway. Preston Carr of Carrington won the Wissota Midwest Modified feature over Jory Berg of Grand Forks.

--Congrats to Hayden Aberle of Edgeley for picking up the Bomber feature win Saturday night at Jamestown Speedway. Kelby Anderson of Fort Ransom was second. Alex Kukowski of Edgeley won the INEX Legends feature while Billie Christ of Jamestown won the Wissota Street Stocks. The ageless John Corell of Jamestown won the IMCA Modified feature.





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