Kesan Wins Three Grand Rice Lake Streets; Mars Tops Late Models

By Ed Reichert

RICE LAKE, WI (August 3) - Despite constant pressure from Tim Johnson, Jay Kesan led from start to finish to win the Street Stock “Little Dream” race Tuesday night at the Rice Lake Speedway. A new record for the event and for perhaps all of WISSOTA was set when with fan contributions bulging his pay envelope, Kesan took home $3,024 dollars for his thirty lap win. In the companion feature events, Jimmy Mars made a late race pass of Adam Hensel to win an outstanding Late Model feature and Jesse Glenz won his first ever feature at Rice Lake in topping the Midwest Modified main event.

Twenty four Street Stocks took the green for the “Little Dream”, knowing that big money was on the line and driving like there was no tomorrow. The action started on the opening lap when Kesan took the initial lead but was turned around in turn three by another car and nearly half the starting field was involved in the major pileup. Three cars were eliminated in the incident. The restart saw Kesan continue to show the way with Tim Johnson moving into second spot and putting on the pressure with Doug Wojcik and Jimmy Randall close behind. A couple more yellows continued to keep the field bunched and the pressure on the leader.

Kesan continued to show the way under green, with Johnson all over him as he made repeated attempts to take over the top spot. Chanda Fjorden-Nord was on the move from the fourth row and she drove past Wojcik for third and began to attack Johnson for the runner up position. Also on the move after starting deep in the field were John Kallas, Mike Jans and Jared Lindner.

The second half of the race saw much more sustained green flag action and Johnson continued to put the heat on Kesan, always running within a car length or two while Fjorden-Nord was also nearly able to slip past Johnson on several occasions. Wojcik remained a factor while Jans continued his steady march toward the front.

One final yellow set up a nine lap sprint to the finish and Johnson made an all out effort of the green, moving to the high side of the track and nearly edging past Kesan down the back chute. However, Jay was running a smooth line and refused to be shook, and he continued to show the way. Fjorden-Nord continued to pressure Johnson also while Jans cracked the top five for the first time.

Johnson made one last dive to the low side with two laps to go, but Kesan continued to hold his groove and Jay came home the winner by two car lengths for the record setting win. Fjorden-Nord was glued to Johnson’s bumper for third with Wojcik and Jans completing the top five.

Mars won a spectacular Late Model finale that saw four different leaders during the thirty lap distance of the feature event that was slowed only once for a yellow flag. Scott Gilberts used the cushion to jump into the early lead and show the way for the first few laps. Joel Cryderman and Ashley Anderson were both on the move while Adam Hensel was charging up from the third row and Mars and Jake Redetzke were making time after starting in row five. It didn’t take long at the breakneck pace the leaders were maintaining until the caught the back of the pack and the action as the front runners weaved, at high speed through the traffic was spectacular.

Gilberts got stuck on the bottom lane and Anderson was able to pass him for the top spot but Hensel was on a mission as he tore around the third mile oval and he went flying by Ashley to take over the lead. Riding the cushion, Hensel started to put a little distance on the field as Gilberts started to fall back with Mars finally working past Keane Laakson to reach the top five.

The yellow waved with nineteen laps complete when Tim McMann slowed on the front chute and on the double file restart, Mars suddenly caught fire. He quickly went from fifth to third on the first green flag lap and then closed on Anderson for second as Hensel continued to show the way. Redetzke was close behind Mars as they both started to catch the leaders. Mars moved past Anderson for second with Redetzke following suit.

Jimmy began to close on Hensel, as Mars was running the low side and Hensel continuing to use the cushion. Mars was gradually closing in, and with only four laps left in the contest, drove under Hensel to take over the lead and become the fourth different leader of the race. In the last couple of laps, Mars stretched his advantage and drove home with a six car length win over Redetzke, whose late surge allowed him to pass Hensel. Anderson and Gilberts completed the top five finishers.

Glenz has been an infrequent competitor at Rice Lake over the past couple of years, but tonight he drove a sterling race to keep a charging Kevin Adams at bay for twenty laps. Glenz started on the pole and led from the start as he had to weather several yellow flags that allowed Adams to rest right on his tail. Adams, who was driving the car normally piloted by Tito Viltz, moved from the third row to quickly get to Glenz’ tail, but once there, he found it a tough task to get by the young Cadott racer. Four yellow flags in the first half of the event eliminated several front runners and kept the field bunched, but it was basically a two car contest.

When the field settled down to some sustained racing, Ryan Viltz made a charge from the fourth row and tracked down the leaders. However, it was Adams who continued to pressure Glenz, trying both high and low to get by, but Glenz never wavered once under the pressure. One late yellow gave Adams a last opportunity , but Glenz refused to yield to the pressure and he kept his car straight and in the groove and drove home with Adams nailed to his rear bumper and Viltz a very close third. Darrel Hazelton had a strong run from the fifth row to finish fourth ahead of Cory Crapser.

Regular racing continues every Saturday night throughout the month of August. The next special event at the track is Saturday, August 28th when all five classes that normally race at the track will hold their Season Championships and will be joined by a full program of the UMSS Sprint Cars who will be making their initial appearance at the speedway.

WISSOTA Street Stocks
Feature – Jay Kesan, Weyerhaeuser; Tim Johnson, Brainerd MN; Chanda Fjorden-Nord, Luck; Doug Wojcik, Ladysmith; Mike Jans, Clarkfield MN; Jared Lindner, Greenwood; Jimmy Randall, Rice Lake; John Kallas, Hurley; Simon Wahlstrom, Cameron; James Wall, Winkler Mb; Ryan Buer, Atwater MN; Ron Hanestad, Glenwood City; Adam Soltis, Ladysmith; Kevin Hager, Kellogg MN; Danny Richards, Mondovi; Travis Hazelton, Chippewa Falls; Ashley Husby, Menomonie; Cody Kummer, Medford; Danny Hanson, Alma; Josh Amans, Rice Lake; Mike Truscott, Chippewa Falls; Marcus Simonson, Milltown; Zach Manley, Cameron; Dan Bork, Alma.
B Feature – Richards; Jans; Kallas; Hazelton; Sam Fankhauser; Mike Knudtson; Ryan Asp; Ryan Henderson; James Vought; Joel Hinrichs
Heat 1 – Soltis; Fjorden-Nord; Wojcik; Bork; Kummer; Richards; Jans; Vought
Heat 2 – Kesan; Hager; Amans; Wall; Wahlstrom; Kallas; Asp; Hazelton
Heat 3 – Buer; Randall; Manley; Husby; Simonson; Knudtson; Fankhauser; Chad Ogilvie
Heat 4 – Hanson; Johnson; Hanestad; Lindner; Truscott; Henderson; Hinrichs
WISSOTA Late Models
Feature – Jimmy Mars, Menomonie; Jake Redetzke, Eau Claire; Adam Hensel, Barron; Ashley Anderson, Elk Mound; Scott Gilberts, Menomonie; Joel Cryderman, Thunder Bay Ont; Keane Laakson, Stone Lake; Chad Mahder, Eau Claire; John Kaanta, Elk Mound; Steve Laursen, Cumberland; Mike Prochnow, Menomonie; Aaron Lillo, Duluth MN; Kevin Carlson, Hermantown MN; Scott Meeds, Spooner; Chris Oertel, Marshfield; Ronnie Rihn, Bloomer; Greg Hill, Eveleth MN; Joey Ogston, Duluth MN; Rick Hanestad, Boyceville; Paul Brust, Rice Lake; Cory Mahder, Elk Mound; Tim McMann, Duluth MN; Todd Gehl, Solon Springs; Jesse Redetzke, Altoona
B Feature – Lillo; Gehl; Brust; Carlson; Jake Hartung; Davin Larson; Kyle Jumbeck
Heat 1 – J. Redetzke; Hensel; Hanestad; Laursen; Meeds; Larson; Brust
Heat 2 – Kaanta; Rihn; Hill; Oertel; Ogston; Lillo; Gehl
Heat 3 – Cryderman; Gilberts; Anderson; Co Mahder; Prochnow; Carlson; Jumbeck
Heat 4 – Ch. Mahder; Mars; Laakson; Je Redetzke; McMann; Hartung
WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds
Feature – Jesse Glenz, Cadott; Kevin Adams, Cameron; Ryan Viltz, Cameron; Darrel Hazelton, Chippewa Falls; Cory Crapser, Chippewa Falls; Bob Anderson, Colfax; Bob Wood, Cadott; Josh Smith, Eau Claire; Joe Olson, Chetek; Joe Eckland, Springbrook; Mark Turner, Rice Lake; Tony Devine, Elk Mound; Travis Anderson, Colfax; Jake Smith, Eau Claire; Ronnie Rihn, Bloomer; Matt Leer, Bruce; Mark Thomas, Menomonie; Bryce Johnson, Barron
Heat 1 – T. Anderson; Wood; Glenz; Thomas; Olson; Grant Southworth; Johnson
Heat 2 – Adams; Crapser; Jo. Smith; Viltz; Turner; Ja Smith
Heat 3 – Devine; Rihn; Leer; Hazelton; B. Anderson; Eckland

August 3 Photos
By Doug Zimmer: