|Rice Lake Speedway Season Champions Crowned; Tripleheader Set
By Ed Reichert
RICE LAKE, WI (August 27) It was championship night at Rice Lake Speedway on Saturday; heat races were lined up by cumulative season points, then straight up from the heats to the features. Only two of the point champions were able to double up by earning track championships also. Kevin Adams and Matt Leer were able to pull off the difficult double while other champions crowned Saturday included Shane Kisling, Cody Kummer and Jay Folz. The UMSS Sprint Cars ran as an added attraction Saturday and Jerry Richert, Jr. of Forest Lake, MN won their 20 lap feature event.
Adams started on the pole for the Modified feature and battled in the early going with Mike Anderson before establishing a small lead. Anderson was also being challenged by Mark Hanson and Paul Brust for the second spot while the team cars of Eric Pember and Tony Bahr were moving to the front also.
Adams had just started to build up a lead when the lone yellow flag flew for a spin with seven laps completed. Adams took off again and started to rebuild his lead, as after this point he was never seriously challenged for the top spot. The battle for second intensified though, as after Hanson jumped the cushion in turn four and lost several positions, Pember and Bahr started taking turns exchanging positions as both also put the heat on Anderson. At the finish, Adams motored home unchallenged for his 11th feature win of the year at Rice Lake and 27th overall as he continues to chase a WISSOTA national title. Anderson fought of the challenges of Pember and Bahr to hold third with Tim McMann racing from deep in the pack to complete the top five.
Leer also earned the pole for the Midwest Modified main event and he edged past Cory Crapser on two separate occasions early for the lead as the yellow flew twice for minor spins. Once under green again, the last 13 laps went nonstop with Leer fighting off first Crapser and then Shane Halopka. Halopka had edged up from the second row and got past Crapser on the second restart to take the runner up slot. Leer had opened up some distance on the field but Halopka gradually caught him as the race continued. Lap after lap, Halopka moved closer to Leer until he was only a couple of car lengths behind. Meanwhile, Crapser was receiving a hard challenge from Ryan Viltz for third.
Halopka drove into the corners as hard as he dared and was able to close to Leer’s rear bumper on the final lap, but Matt didn’t get Shane any openings as he drove on to his fifth Rice Lake win of the year. Crapser fought off Viltz for third with Zach Manley completing the top five.
Kisling recorded a welcome clean sweep in the Super Stocks as he also is in the midst of a battle for the WISSOTA national title in the Supers. Kisling started on the outside pole, and he immediately moved to the cushion which he loves and edged ahead of Ben Hillman for the early lead. Only two laps were completed when a spin slowed the action.
On the green, Kisling continued to show the way but Jason Forehand was able to get past Hillman for second and he began to challenge Kisling for the lead. For several laps they ran nose to tail with Forehand trying to get under Kisling but unable to pull off the move. With the last 18 laps of the event going green, Kisling was eventually able to get his momentum rolling and he gradually pulled away from Forehand.
Hillman then picked up the pace and closed on Forehand for the second spot. In the last couple of laps, the second place battle saw them close somewhat on Kisling, but Shane remained comfortably in front as he notched his fifth Rice Lake victory of the season. Second and third place remained status at the finish while Eric Olson fought off a race long battle from Cory Karshbaum to take the fourth spot.
Cody Kummer won his first ever track championship at the Rice Lake Speedway, and while he started on the pole, his route to victory lane was full of drama with almost more action on the track than could be kept up with.
Things started right off with a bang and the intensity never let up over the course of 15 laps. Kummer was battling with Sam Fankhauser and Jay Kesan in the early going with Adam Soltis also in the lead pack. First Joel Hinrichs lost a driveshaft on the back chute and then contact on the front chute sent Fankhauser for a spin, and after he went to the tail of the field the race continued.
Kummer continued to lead but he was being pressured by Kesan and eventually Doug Wojcik who moved up from the fourth row as yellow flags for spins kept the field bunched and the restarts scrambled. Wojcik eventually moved past Kesan for second and he began to pressure Kummer for the lead. On several occasions, Wojcik would get to the inside of Kummer but couldn’t complete the pass.
Finally Wojcik was able to squeeze past Kummer for the lead with Kesan following him through. The battle for the lead remained intense however, and going into turn three as they raced hard for the top spot, Wojcik and Kesan came together with Wojcik going for a spin. Doug suffered a flat tire and retired from the event while Kesan was sent to the tail and would soon drop out of the event also. Kummer found himself back in the lead and Fankhauser, using all the yellows to his best advantage, had moved up to second.
The race ended up being a two lap sprint to the finish and on the final corner Fankhauser accelerated up beside Kummer for a fantastic finish, with Kummer being judged the winner by perhaps a bumper’s width. James Vought survived all the wild action to finish third and earn a trophy, with Butch Madsen and Nick Wojcik completing the top five. It was Kummer’s third feature win at Rice Lake.
Jay Folz picked a great time to win his first ever feature win in the Pure Stocks and earn himself a championship. Folz has been the model of consistency, with strong finishes all year earning him the second place in track points, however he has had several chances to earn his feature win and they all seemed to slip away.
However, Saturday would be different as after battling with point champion Nick Traynor in the early going, Folz pulled into the lead. He was challenged by Mike Schnider and then Jason Havel. Havel had worked his way up from the third row and he closed to Folz’s rear bumper as the laps ran down.
Folz kept his line on the track and while Havel tried to nose under Jay for the lead, Folz continued to hold the point. A last lap all out effort by Havel was just not enough as Folz drove home for the memorable win. Schnider had a great run himself as he took the third spot with Traynor and Gunnar Watkins, back from a flip 10 days ago, completing the top five.
With the regular season now in the books, drivers are focusing on one last huge weekend to complete the 2011 racing season at Rice Lake Speedway. For the first time in track history, a triple header of racing is scheduled over the Labor Day weekend. Races will be held Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings at the track on the north edge of Rice Lake. All five classes will be racing in complete shows all three evenings, and extra money is on the line for all classes. With a large field of cars expected in all divisions, the racing will commence at a special early starting time so that the shows are completed in a timely manner. Race time will be 6:00 p.m. on Friday, with the first green flag scheduled to drop at 4:00 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday. Free camping will be allowed in the lower parking lot and as a part of the activities, Adams-Hansen, Inc. will be providing a free corn feed and music after the races on Saturday.
For more information on this event, check the speedway website at www.ricelakespeedway,net or call Adams at (715) 205-2861.
20 lap Feature Kevin Adams(Cameron), Mike Anderson(Colfax), Eric Pember(Pittsville), Tony Bahr(Rice Lake), Tim McMann(Duluth MN), Mark Hanson(Chippewa Falls), Curt Myers(Cameron), Dave Baxter(Eau Claire), Ross Prochnow(Boyceville), Jesse Glenz(Cadott), Steve Hallquist, Shaun Kreyer, Buddy Mayala, Aric Lindberg, Paul Brust.
10 lap Heat 1 Adams, Brust(Rice Lake), Glenz, Bahr, Myers, McMann, Hallquist
Heat 2 Anderson, Hanson, Pember, Baxter, Kreyer(Hayward), Prochnow, Mayala
WISSOTA Super Stocks
20 lap Feature Shane Kisling(Sarona), Jason Forehand(Eau Claire), Ben Hillman(Menomonie), Eric Olson(Ladysmith), Cory Karshbaum(Chetek), Tad Schoonover(Eagle River), Andy Grymala(Superior), Brad Edington(Elk Mound), Tim Shackleton(Barron), Kirk Bogdanovic(Phillips), Roy Pumala, Eric Davis, David Pospyhalla, Pat Jungerberg, Donnie Talmage
10 lap Heat 1 Hillman, Olson, Grymala, Talmage(Amery), Shackleton, Edington, Bogdanovic, Pospyhalla
Heat 2 Kisling, Forehand, Karshbaum, Schoonover, Jungerberg(Barron), Davis, Rob Holmstrom, Pumala
WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds
15 lap Feature Matt Leer(Bruce), Shane Halopka(Greenwood), Cory Crapser(Chippewa Falls), Ryan Viltz(Chetek), Zach Manley(Cameron), Tito Viltz(Rice Lake), Dusty Brown(Rice Lake), Travis Anderson(Colfax), Joe Chaplin Jr(Cameron), Josh Smith(Rice Lake), Mark Turner, Nick Koehler, Jake Stai, Joe Eckland
10 lap Heat 1 Leer, R. Viltz, Manley, Chaplin Jr, Anderson, Stai, Terry Sirek
Heat 2 Crapser, Halopka, T. Viltz, Brown, Turner(Rice Lake), Eckland, Smith, Koehler
WISSOTA Street Stocks