Racenight Hightlights for June 22, 2018
Our racenight of June 22, 2018 was the season opener at Superior International Motorplex and the first race to be held at the venue in over two years. With some new staff, and some bugs to iron out, the night got started a bit late. We will endeavour to improve this for our fans in upcoming race nights.
The weather for the evening couldn’t have been better.
After qualifying and opening ceremonies the night got started with some Four Car Dashes:
Michigan Modifieds: Winner - #3 Kevin Oicle, 2nd – #90 Jay Palumbo, 3rd #84 Mark Laakso, 4th, #21 Jake Irwin
ABC – Factory Stocks: Winner, with a last lap pass on the front stretch, #77 Chase Wilson, 2nd #21K Kevin Errington, 3rd #67 Jarritt Varcoe, dnf #88 Gerald Archer (after spinning on corner 3 left the track)
Super Late Models: Winner in #21K – Josh Ware, 2nd #61 Dustin Jackson, 3rd in #94 Jay Palumbo, 4th #46 Dan Byrnes.
Super Late Models:
In the Super Late Model class there was one heat and a feature. In the heat five cars were out including Josh Ware driving the 21K, #61 Dustin Jackson, #50 Rob Hiiemaa, Jay Palumbo in the #94, and the #100 of Ron Raynor. Ware led the entire race for the win with Jackson second.
Later during the feature, the group was joined by Dan Byrnes to make a 6 car field. Josh Ware was running in the lead for the first laps while Rob Hiiemaa was following in second being challenged by Dustin Jackson. Eventually Jackson got past Hiiemaa and at that point was nearly a quarter lap behind the leader. Jackson closed the gap. With just a few laps left, Dan Byrnes spun out on the back stretch bringing out the caution and closing the pack back up. Again, Jackson was able to keep up, but unable to get around Ware. Ware took the checkers with Jackson 2nd, Palumbo 3rd, Hiiemaa 4th, Raynor 5th, and Byrnes 6th.
ABC Factory Stock:
The ABC-Factory Stock division also had one heat and a feature for the evening. In the heat 6 cars were out. Jerry Ross in the #01 was running lead for most of the race. At first he was challenged by #88 Gerald Archer, then a few laps in #67 Jarritt Varcoe moved up and was challenging on the outside. Also in the mix was #77 Chase Wilson. As the race wound down, Kevin Errington in the #21K moved up through the field. On the last lap Ross left a bit of room low and Errington got inside of Ross down the backstretch to take the lead, Ross slid up the track in corner 4 and worked to gain control of his car coming to the line. Errington took the win, followed by Chase Wilson, Jarritt Varcoe, Jerry Ross, Gerald Archer, and Jonathan Diodati. Ross had ended the race sideway at the line and spun out, nearly collecting Archer.
The six cars were back out for their feature later in the night. The race began with Jerry Ross back out front with Gerald Archer working on him for a few laps. Eventually Archer got passed by Kevin Errington and then Errington set to work on Ross, eventually getting by. Ross was then passed by Chase Wilson and Wilson went to work on Errington. Errington left a bit too much room on the bottom and Wilson took advantage, eventually getting past Errington. A lap later though, Wilson’s engine sputtered and lost power and Wilson left the track, returning the lead and eventually the win to Errington. Jarritt Varcoe pulled up second, with Jerry Ross third.
The Michigan Mods were out for twin 25 Lap Features. The first feature took place just before intermission with 7 cars on track. The field took the green and immediately the caution came out as Nick Kozak in the #xx spun on the frontstretch. The field was joined by Jay Palumbo bringing the count to 8 cars for the full double file restart.
Kevin Oicle in the #3 took the early lead with #28 Mark Porpealia and #21 Jake Irwin in pursuit. Irwin and Porpealia were joined by Josh Ware in the #7 coming up the middle making it three wide in the front stretch – that just doesn’t work on this 1/3 mile and Ware smartly backed off. Eventually ware got past both Porpealia and Irwin for second. About 4 laps in, caution came out as Kozak went up and off the track sideways at the exit of corner 2. At the restart, Ware quickly got ahead of Oicle for the lead. Jay Palumbo had also moved up in the field and was working outside of Oicle, when Oicle eventually spun out of corner 1 bringing out a caution. Oicle restarted at the back. First lap after the restart, we saw Jake Irwin low in corner 3 and 4 run into a problem and come to a slow roll on the inside of front stretch, then leaving the track. We later learned he had a front brake seize up. Kozak brought out the caution again, with a slide of corner 4 into the tires in front of the beer garden. It was his third caution of the race and he was shown the black flag. Kozak was obviously having bad handling problems with his car. After the restart, with Ware in the lead caution flew one more time when Oicle spun out of corner 3. The race ended with Ware taking the win, Palumbo challenged a few times but couldn’t get past Ware taking 2nd. #84 Mark Laakso was 3rd, Irwin 4th.
In their second feature, things ran a bit smoother. Oicle took the early lead, with Porpealia and Irwin doing battle for second behind. A few laps in, Ware moved up and split Porpealia and Irwin and took over second place. A few laps later, Ware caught Oicle and made a pass for the lead and eventually the win. Before the end of the race, Oicle got passed by Palumbo for a 2nd place finish. Oicle was 3rd, Irwin 4th.
At the end of the night, the crowd was a bit sparse, but those that remained were treated to an 8 School Bus race, that included a bit of bashing and a full 180 spin (with a push) by one of the busses. Ted Ritchie Jr. claimed the win – P.S. don’t let your kids ride with him.
Photos from the night are viewable in our gallery at http://lairdinternationalraceway.myracepass.com/gallery/?g=15254
Article Credit: Tom Stephenson
Submitted By: Tom Stephenson