Sheyenne Speedway Crowns Memorial Day Special Winners
Sheyenne Speedway in Lisbon opened its 2023 season with its annual Memorial Day special. A solid 75 car field was on hand. One of the highlights of the night is the pre-race laps by the cars (pictured above) in honor of those who lost their lives serving our country.
The Wissota Mods are on the card at Sheyenne this year; it’s a bit of a gamble, considering the two closest weekly Wissota Mod tracks are Brown County Speedway in Aberdeen and I-94 EMR Speedway in Fergus Falls. Six showed up on Monday, some very good cars, but not a very deep field. I am curious to see what the weekly counts look like once they get on a regular Thursday schedule. One night, especially on the final day of a four-day weekend where there were no rainouts, isn’t a fair way to make a judgement.
Sheyenne will not race this coming Thursday – it was a rain date if Monday’s show was rained out – but will resume with the Dirt Race Central Street Stock Tour presented by Shocker Hitch on June 8. No Wissota Modifieds that night.
A total of 19 INEX Legends cars were on hand with Kody Machart of Moorhead and Glenn Mitchell of Picton, NSW on the front row. There was a near disaster on the first lap with a multi car incident in turn two tour, but evasive action prevented any major damage.
Machart went to work on Mitchell up front as Hendrickson was working a higher line to make up ground.
Several cars were battling back in the field, including Collin Compson of Valley City, Bo Gregor of Lisbon, Ty Olson of Mandan and Scott Richardson of Pelican Rapids.
Hendrickson was working on Mitchell for second as Machart opened up a few car lengths. Hendrickson would take over second and would try diligently to catch Machart.
Collin Compson, who started eighth, had worked to fourth while Gregor, who started 11th, was into fifth.
Hendrickson tried different lines to try and close the gap but ran out of time as Machart would win by .553 seconds. Mitchell ran a solid third with Compson and Gregor rounding out the top five.
The Reinke brothers of Lisbon, Zach and Nate led the 15-car Wissota Midwest Modified field to green, but it was the Nightmare, Lucas Rodin of Marion, that made an aggressive move on the low line on the first lap to take the lead.
Nate Reinke, already armed with a win at I-94 EMR Speedway, went up top and was making the line work, and was closing the gap on Rodin. Just as he had a run off of turn two, the caution came out for a big pileup in turns one and two. I didn’t see what happened but there was plenty of damaged cars. Zach Reinke and Eric Cease of Bath, S.D., both left on the hook; Jaren Wibstad of Jamestown, Brennan Urbach and Tony Smith of Jamestown all had damage.
On the restart, Rodin went up to the high line where Reinke had been so quick earlier and just took off, and the high line would prove the place to be. Alex Langland of Enderlin had moved into third with Wibstad, who won Friday at I-94 EMR Speedway, moving into fourth.
Urbach had worked his way into fifth when a caution came out for a car off of turns three and four. Nate Reinke took a gamble and took the low line on the restart but it didn’t pay off as Alex Langland moved into second.
Everyone was running on the top lane as it was much quicker than the lower line. But, with three to go, things got interesting in lapped traffic, as Rodin got caught up in an incident with Kunze and Cole Neset of Fargo. Neset left on the hook while Kunze was also done for the night. Rodin was able to continue.
With four to go Rodin lead Alex Langland to the green as Wibstad tried desperately to make the low lane work. Rodin would pull away from there and pick up the win; the race ended under checkered/caution as a car spun in turn two. Langland finished a strong second with Reinke taking third. Wibstad and Urbach, despite being caught up in an earlier mishap, finished off good nights in fourth and fifth, respectively.
Rodin capped off an excellent weekend. He won Friday at Brown County Speedway in Aberdeen, won Saturday in Jamestown, and was second at a special at Ogilvie on Sunday. So that’s three wins and a runner-up finish in four starts; I would suspect at this rate he will be a national point contender again.
The Hobby Stock feature – which might as well have been an enduro based on attrition – came down to three cars.
A caution would wave about midway through and that’s when cars began dropping out. Aberdeen driver Jayden Michaelsohn, the defending Sheyenne champion in the Hobby Stock, had a puff of smoke come out of his #95 machine during a caution. Billy Carow of Jamestown also dropped out with an issue. Dalton Aabrekke was charged with a second caution moments later to end his night and Cade Gentzkow would also pull in.
It came down to three cars – Kelby Anderson of Fort Ransom, Ryan Mund of Milnor and Tyce Boisjolie of Enderlin. Anderson, who was a runner-up Saturday at Jamestown, was the leader on the restart.
Mund went low and Tyce Boisjolie was working the higher lane desperately ooking for speed. He got on the outside of Anderson for a while but slid back. Anderson had about two car lengths on Mund and would go on to the feature win. Mund and Tyce Boisjolie rounded out the finishers.
Trey Hess of Grand Forks took the early lead in the Wissota Street Stock feature with Kasey Ussatis of Nome and Tucker Pederson of East Grand Forks
Troy Cepak Jr. of Montana was on the move, as was multi-time Sheyenne champion Jonny Carter, who was making his season debut.
Carter went to work on the very low line and for a while as able to make some ground; but
Cepak was working on Carter for fifth with Kyle Anderson of Jamestown closing in on those two.
Hess and Ussatis had opened up some distance on third-place Pederson. Jonny Carter worked by Pederson for third and set his sights on the top two. The caution would wave for Adam Dehne spinning right in front of the leaders; fortunately no other cars were involved.
Carter got by Ussatis on the restart and stayed close to Hess. The caution would wave when Ussatis slid off of turns three and four and would later pull in. That would move Anderson into third and Cepak back into the top five.
Carter would try to go low on the restart, and that would give Anderson an opening into second. He began to pressure Hess up front.
The veteran Todd Carter of Lisbon had quietly worked through traffic after starting ninth and into the top five.
Hess could ill afford a mistake with some big guns behind him, and the Grand Forks driver didn’t make one in prevailing for the win. He led all 20 laps for the win.
Anderson capped off a nice night, finishing second after starting eighth. Pederson finished third, Todd Carter fourth and Jonny Carter fifth. Hunter Carter of Lisbon went from 10th to sixth while Cepak went from 15th to seventh.
The six modifieds on hand put on a decent show. Superman Mike Stearns of Aberdeen jumped out to the early lead. Joseph Thomas of Fargo, who won last night at Casino, quickly moved into second ahead of heat race winner Dustin Strand of East Grand Forks.
Tyler Kaeter of St. Cloud make the long trek and also was in contention in the top four.
Thomas was working the lower line and they went 3-wide up front before taking the lead. HE found the fastest way around – the high line in turns one and two and the low line in turns three and four.
For a while, Kaeter was making the low line work and got beside Thomas, but the 6ST’s momentum out of turn two would reestablish control.
Strand, who dominated the field at River Cities on Friday, got back around Kaeter and took over second. But Thomas was in control by then and would take the win by 1.557 seconds. Strand settled for second with Kaeter running a solid third. Enderlin’s Randy Klein was fourth and Stearns settled for fifth.
Mason Bogart turned the Mini Stock feature into a Sunday drive. He took the lead from the green flag and checked out on the 10-car field.
Hunter Goulet of Fargo, who won at Viking Speedway on Sunday, started fifth but worked his way past Jason Kast of Fairmount for third. Kody Crabtree settled into fourth ahead of Christian Kast.
Bogart’s 97 was flawless and he opened a straightaway-plus on the field. Goulet was comfortably in second while Kast was solidly in third.
Bogart would win easily with Goulet taking second. Jason Kast had a good night in third with Crabtree holding off Christian Kast at the line for fourth.
Not only did Machart picked up his first career win recently in the INEX Legends, so did Hendrickson. Hendrickson won on Friday at Red River Valley Speedway. Machart is 15 by the way while Hendrickson is 17. There is a lot of young talent in the INEX Legends class that is developing.
Cepak and Castro, who both hail from Montana, were on their fourth night of the weekend. They raced at Dacotah Speedway in Mandan on Friday, Jamestown on Saturday, Casino Speedway in Watertown, S.D., on Sunday and capped off the road trip with a visit to Sheyenne. I’ve seen Castro race several times before and he’s a formidable foe, this weekend was my first chance to see Cepak.
It was a busy weekend for Pederson, Hess and Greg Jose of Grand Forks. All three raced at their home track of River Cities Speedway on Friday, and then Hess and Pederson went to Devils Lake while Jose went to Greenbush on Saturday, and Casino on Sunday and Monday were at Sheyenne. Pederson and Hess finished in the top five all four nights of the weekend and each got a win.
Rodin also has an IMCA Modified this season, he raced that at Jamestown on Saturday.
Anthony Wendel of Enderlin has moved into a Wissota Street Stock this season after previously racing in the Hobby Stock class.