Otterness Wins Hobby Stock Special at RRVS; Wilke, Kesselberg, Pavlicek, Pake and Hibdon Victorious
I made it back to Red River Valley Speedway in West Fargo on Friday. The IMCA Hobby Stocks took center stage as they were racing for a $500 payday.
I was happy to see the IMCA Hobby Stocks get the spotlight, with a good purse (it was also $100 to start) and getting to run last.
It was an overcast, humid evening, and the track stayed pretty tacky as a result – a contrast to the dry and slick track it usually is.
With the IMCA Hobby Stock feature paying $500 to win, it was clear the intensity had been cranked up as there was two and three wide racing from the get-go. William Herron of Brainerd took the lead from the green flag.
There was a lot of rough driving early, too to the points where the drivers got warned on the raceceiver after an early caution. I don’t think Brad Orvedal of Fargo and Tanner Engen of Detroit Lakes got together for a beer after the races. There was a lot of contact between those two cars early, and just three laps into the race, Engen’s 44 car was turned after further contact and was damaged, leaving on the hook. I didn’t see what happened but Orvedal was sent to the pits.
With 17 to go Herron remained in front ahead of Tim Otterness of Brainerd. Brodee Eckerdt of Grand Forks moved into third with Jay Loughman of Rugby in fourth.
The race was shortened to 15 laps, and Otterness edged ahead of Herron in what turned into a great battle up front. Eckerdt was right there as was Loughman. Point leader Dan Dowling of Davenport had moved into the top five.
Otterness and Herron put on a great show up front, and Otterness edged ahead with three laps left. Eckerdt went to work on Herron for second.
Otterness picked up the $500 win by .261 seconds over Eckerdt, who edged Herron for second. Loughman was fourth and Tim Church of Moorhead capped off a solid performance by taking fifth. Otterness also won Thursday night at Norman County Raceway by a few feet over Eckerdt.
The INEX Legends set a pretty frantic pace early with Evan Hendrickson of Mapleton setting the early pace. Collin Compson of Valley City, who picked up his first career win at Sheyenne Speedway earlier this summer, had moved into second and was pressuring Hendrickson up front.
Behind them was a pack of about six cars that included Zander Bauer of Gwinner, Zander Compson of Valley City, Ashton Spieker of Sabin, Sean Johnson of Kindred, Tye Wilke of Detroit Lakes and Alex Braseth of Ulen, who were battling two and three wide. And that group was closing on the top two.
Compson was patient up front and worked around Hendrickson, who wound up pulling in late. Johnson, Spieker and Wilke were closing quickly.
Johnson had moved in front, and seconds later Compson’s #49 blew a motor in spectacular fashion, ending what was a great run. Moments later, on the ensuing restart, Wilke had moved into the lead but more trouble hit a contender. Johnson’s #58 was tagged in the left rear and went tumbling a few times in turns one and two. Johnson was OK but his machine was pretty beat up.
On the final restart Wilke maintained the top spot on his way to another win; he had started 12th on the 22-car field. Frankly, it takes a pretty good performance to beat Wilke in the Legends right now. Spieker had moved nicely through the field as well, taking second after starting 11th. Bauer capped off a good run in third, with Zander Compson finishing a solid fourth. Taylor Sargent of Gwinner rounded out the top five.
After a few early hiccups – frankly a few of the sportmod drivers would scare me sometimes with the way they race – the IMCA Sport Mod feature settled into a good race. Landon Maatz of Walcott set the pace but Kevin Veralrud of Horace was providing a strong challenge up front.
Scott Jacobson of Fargo, Ryan Restad of West Fargo and Rich Pavlicek of Casselton were closing quickly. Jacobson began to challenge Veralrud for second, which opened up some breathing room for Maatz, who was seeking his first career win.
Maatz had about a second lead on Jacobson who was closing. The caution would come out with four to go as Veralrud’s night ended with a spin in turn four. The last person who wanted to see the caution was Maatz, who now had both Jacobson and Pavlicek on his bumper.
Pavlicek, who started 11th moved into second and challenged Maatz for the lead. On the final lap Pavlicek made a daring slider in turns one and two and made it stick and took over the lead. He would hold on for a .119 second win over Maatz in a thrilling finish. Jacobson was third after starting 10th.
Chris VanMil of Barnesville is another consistent performer and advanced to a good fourth place finish after starting 12th with Restad rounding out the top five.
I will be honest, it was not one of the cleaner IMCA Stock Car features I’ve seen at Red River Valley. There was some beating and banging in traffic and a few drivers I checked with weren’t happy after the race. It is getting to the time of year where the driving gets more aggressive and the tempers get shorter.
Kalvin Kesselberg of Ada took the lead from the front row of the stock car feature. He was initially challenged by Brody Carlsrud of Fargo.
Todd Heinrich of Fargo soon pressured Carlsrud for second and tooitk over the spot after a caution for Travis Robertson’s flat tire in turns one and two. Point leader Rob VanMil of Barnesville was making a move through the field, running a lower line and climbing to second about halfway through it.
Kesselberg was three-wheeling on the top side with VanMil low, and it turned into a fantastic fight up front. Heinrich and Carlsrud were solidly in third and fourth, respectively, with Brennan Borg of Harwood working into fifth.
VanMil was all over Kesselberg up front, but he checked up briefly in the bottom of turn four and that cost him valuable ground late. Kesselberg opened up some breathing room as a result and would go on to win by 1.262. That margin of victory is a little misleading as it was a much closer race that than for much of the night.
Heinrich capped off a steady night in third while Carlsrud and Borg rounded out the top five. An
Eleven IMCA RaceSaver Sprints competed on Friday as car counts continue to be solid in the class, which is in its second year at Red River Valley.
Rookie Morgan Nyquist of Moorhead was the early leader, but Andy Pake of Felton, who picked up his first career win at Norman County Raceway in Ada on Aug. 4, was the car on the move. He started seventh on the grid but quickly got to the front and took over the lead.
Tye Wilke was also running well, moving from ninth to second. Pake had about a 2.7 lead on Wilke.
National point leader Trevor Serbus of Olivia, Dustin Bluhm of Herman and Nyquist were running in the top five.
The caution came out with two to go, erasing Pake’s lead, but the Felton driver would go on to win with Wilke settling for second. Serbus moved into third by the finish with Nyquist and Bluhm rounding out the top five.
Bill Wadeson of Alice led the first two laps of the IMCA Modified feature, but Jordan Sours of Lisbon would take over the top spot.
Jeff Odden of Reiles Acres settled into second as Wadeson slid back. Moving up quickly were Kollin Hibdon of Pahrump, Nev., and Dave Shipley of Argusville.
About halfway through, Hibdon, who had been applying heavy pressure to Sours, would take over the top spot. Once that was the case, it was pretty much over.
Shipley was closing quick on Sours for second and would make the pass; Sours would pull in with an issue, which ended his hopes for a top three finish.
Hibdon would win by 2.792 seconds over Shipley with Odden capping off a nice night in third. Darren Pfau of West Fargo had run well and finished in fourth with John Miller capping off a good run in fifth.
Shipley is Mr. Steady at Red River Valley. He rarely is involved in wrecks – just check out his car after the race and it’s usually immaculate – and usually finds his way into the top five by the checkered. It’s not a surprise to see him leading the points.
Nathan Sletto of Brandon, Minn., who has raced a wingless sprint earlier this season, had an IMCA modified on hand on Friday.
Broking Wins RV Tour at I-94
Johnny Broking of Grand Rapids won the Advantage RV Mod Tour feature Friday night at I-94 Sure Step Speedway in Fergus Falls. Zach Johnson of Lowry was second, Brady Gerdes of Villard was third, Dave Cain of Corcoran fourth and Tyler Peterson of Hickson fifth.
Don Shaw of Ham Lake picked up his second Wissota Late Model feature win in as many nights; he won Thursday at Norman County Raceway. Cole Searing of Huron was second, Cole Schill of Hawley third, Ryan Mikkelson of Alexandria fourth and Sam Zender of Fergus Falls fifth.
Zender picked up the Viessman Late Model feature win over Ben Wolden of Fergus Falls. Derek Quinn of Brandon was third, Brad Staples of Herman fourth and Scott Harrington of Waubay fifth.
Shane Howell of Buffalo won the Wissota Midwest Modified feature over Brendan Blascyk of Hoffman. Ron Saurer of Dalton was third, Scott Bintz of Jamestown was fourth and Zach Benson of Princeton fifth.
National point leader Kyle Dykhoff of Starbuck captured the Wissota Street Stock feature over Ryan Satter of Dent. Cory Dykhoff of Perham was third, Ty Agen of Chippewa Falls, Wis., was fourth and Royce Jawaski of Adrian was fifth.
Shawn Beto of Wahpeton won the Short Tracker feature over Kevin Wahl of Fergus Falls. Madison Swenson of Alexandria was third, Jeff Lofquist of Fergus Falls fourth.
Sexton Wins Lightning Sprints at River Cities
Brent Sexton of Lakeside, California won Night 2 of the POWRi Minn-Kota Lightning Sprint Shootout, which was held Friday night at River Cities Speedway in Grand Forks. Alex Truscinski of Greenbush was second, Kelsi Pederson of East Grand Forks thir, Eric Sunborg of Val Joli, Quebec fourth and Alan Truscinski of Greenbush was fifth.
Dustin Strand of East Grand Forks won the Wissota Late Model feature over Jason Strand of Portland. Brody Troftgruben of Grand Forks was third, Lance Schill of Langdon fourth and Joey Pederson of East Grand Forks was fifth.
Tucker Pederson of East Grand Forks won the Wissota Street Stock feature over Trey Hess of Grand Forks. Aaron Blacklance of Thief River Falls was third, Dan McNamee of Arvilla fourth and John Halvorson of Warren was fifth.
Lance Schill of Langdon won the Wissota Midwest Modified feature over Nate Raasakka of Grand Forks. Reise Stenberg of Argusville was third, David Simpson of Thunder Bay was fourth and Bryan Kakela of Langdon fifth.
Only seven Buffalo Wild Wings NOSA Sprints were on hand, and Austin Pierce of Grand Forks picked up the win over Wade Nygaard of Grand Forks. Blake Egeland of Climax was third.