|Mad Dog Bites Rice Lake Speedway Foes
By Ed Reichert
RICE LAKE, WI (July 9) - Mark “Mad Dog” Hanson shook off an season that has so far been marked by mechanical failures and bad luck to outrun the field and record his first WISSOTA Modified feature win of 2011 Saturday night at the Rice Lake Speedway. Hanson became the only first time winner of the evening Saturday as Shane Kisling, Ryan Viltz, Doug Wojcik and Jason Havel also tasted victory on a steamy Wisconsin race night.
Hanson started on the outside of the front row in what would turn out to be a nonstop main event and he out jumped Dave Mayala to take the early lead. As Hanson put distance on the field quickly, there was an intense battle for the positions behind him as the drivers dueled three and four wide, jockeying for an opening to the front of the field. Tim McMann found an opening and advanced from the third row to take the second spot with Shaun Kreyer and Kevin Adams also on the move. Adams continued his charge as he slid past Kreyer to take third and then moved in to take on his Father-In-Law for the second spot.
Meanwhile, Hanson continued to run a smooth line around the high side of the track as he maintained the lead he had built up. Lap after lap, Adams continued to try and pass McMann, diving up from the bottom of the corners. However, McMann had his own smooth line on the high side and he refused to cut his Son-In-Law any slack. As the laps ran down, the battle for second saw both drivers start to cut into Hanson’s lead, and the margin was down to about three car lengths. However, Hanson continued to hit his marks and rode the high side home for the win. A last lap charge by Adams saw him nip McMann by inches at the line for second with Kreyer and Paul Brust completing the top five.
Kisling earned a division best third feature win in the Super Stocks in a race that very much mirrored the Modified run. Kisling also started on the outside of the front row, led the entire contest which also went nonstop and while he wasn’t severely challenged for the lead, the battle for second was much like the Modified event turned out to be.
With Kisling out front and looking unbeatable, the focus was on the second place battle which was a dandy. Steve Thomas had gotten past Aaron Wilson to take the second spot but he was soon to feel extreme pressure from Jason Forehand. The two young veteran drivers raced side by side around the track for many laps, trading the position back and forth and never making contact with each other. They even exchanged grooves on the track with first Thomas and then Forehand taking the low side and the other able to stay right next to them, thanks to a racy, wide track.
Eventually Forehand was able to take the spot and the battle for second had allowed them both to close the gap on Kisling. However, Shane still maintained a comfortable edge as he took Randy Davis’ checkered flag. Behind Forehand, the battle for third raged just like the previous battle for second had, and at the line Eric Olson edged Thomas by inches for third with Ben Hillman completing the top five.
The Midwest Modified feature event saw a surprise finish with the lead being changed on the final corner. Joe Chaplin Jr. and Darren LaBlonde shared the front row but current national point leader Cory Crapser somehow found a way to advance from the third row to the front and after one lap he was the leader. It looked like he might make a runaway of the race, but Tito and Ryan Viltz moved forward as they battled for the second spot. Ryan wheeled past his brother to take over second, and when the lone yellow of the race flew with six laps complete, it gave the rest of the pack another shot at Crapser.
Crapser continued to lead under the green but Ryan Viltz was all over him, diving low and three wheeling his car through the corner. He attempted an inside pass in turn one and the cars came together but Crapser continued to hold the advantage. However, the contact had given Crapser body damage and his left rear tire started to smoke with metal rubbing on it. After trying the low side several times, Viltz moved to the second groove and while he was able to pull up beside Crapser in the corners, he was never quite able to complete the move.
Ryan tried the high side one last time on the final lap, and just as he dove into turn three, Crapser’s tire blew. Crapser immediately lost speed as he fought to control the car. Viltz was able to steer to the outside and drive around Crapser in the few yards before they crossed the line to take his second win of the year at Rice Lake , but first since opening night. Crapser was able to limp across the line for second, nipping Matt Leer with Tito Viltz and Josh Smith completing the top five.
The only class that seemed to have issues Saturday was the Street Stocks where several yellows and one big crash slowed the action.
Things started off with a bang when Carolyn Nosser lost control as the pack raced out of turn four on the opening lap and when she spun back up the track, had contact was made with Jimmy Randall. Several other cars piled into the wreck and when the damage was assessed, Nosser , Randall and Josh Wahlstrom were all eliminated from the contest.
Cody Kummer took the lead on the restart and led for a number of laps with Jay Kesan providing plenty of pressure on the leader. Meanwhile, Doug and Nick Wojcik, Sam Fankhauser and Adam Soltis all battled for position.
Kesan continued to apply major pressure on Kummer as he drove deep into the corners and began rapping on the rear bumper of Cody’s car. Still Kummer continued to show the way as the laps ran down and Kesan turned up the heat. Again the leaders made contact in turn four and once again down the front chute with Kummer going for a wild spin across the track with the rest of the pack fortunately able to avoid him. Kesan was judged to be at fault for the incident and he opted to call it a night with Kummer restored to the lead.
However, things weren’t over for Cody yet, as Doug Wojcik got a great start and was able to find the smallest of openings inside of Cody in turn one and he took over the lead. While Cody tried his best to regain the point, the laps ran out on him and Wojcik claimed his fifth feature win of the year at Rice Lake, second only to Kevin Adams in numbers of feature wins. Fankhauser raced home third ahead of Soltis and Ashley Husby.
It looked like veteran Bob Thompson was going to win his first feature win in many a year Saturday, but a late race charge by Havel saw him take his third Pure Stock win of the season. Thompson started on the outside of row one and got the jump on Darwin Brown to lead during the early going. Thompson was working a fairly high groove on the track but he made it pay as he pulled away from the pack.
A yellow when Mike Schnider was turned around bunched the field but Thompson continued to lead as the race resumed. A great battle for position saw Brown, John Erickson and Nick Traynor fighting for spots. However, Havel was on the move as he methodically worked his way forward from the fourth row and once he got into second, he began to close rapidly on Thompson as the laps ran down, catching and passing Thompson with only two laps remaining. Thompson held on for a strong second place finish with Traynor, Erickson and Brown completing the top five.
Racing action continues next Saturday night at 6:30 p.m. sharp, when it will be TRAXXAS Radio Control Car night at the speedway.
20 lap Feature Mark Hanson(Chippewa Falls), Kevin Adams(Cameron), Tim McMann(Duluth MN), Shaun Kreyer(Hayward), Paul Brust(Rice Lake), Mike Anderson(Colfax), Scott Miller(Rice Lake), Dave Mayala(Barron), Bryan Hessler(Chetek), Aric Lindberg(Dallas), Buddy Mayala, Steve Hallquist, Rich Anderson
10 lap Heat 1 Adams, Anderson, Kreyer, McMann, Hallquist
Heat 2 Brust, Hanson, D. Mayala, Miller, B. Mayala
WISSOTA Super Stocks
20 lap Feature Shane Kisling(Sarona), Jason Forehand(Eau Claire), Eric Olson(Ladysmith), Steve Thomas(Menomonie), Ben Hillman(Menomonie), Aaron Wilson(Menomonie), Andy Grymala(Superior), Cory Karshbaum(Chetek), Bart Steffen(Eau Claire), Donnie Talmage(Amery), Allen Amborn, Tim Shackleton, Marcus Simonson, David Pospyhalla, Tad Schoonover, Jim Harris
10 lap Heat 1 Kisling, Hillman, Thomas, Harris(Menomonie), Steffen, Talmage, Simonson, Pospyhalla
Heat 2 Forehand, Olson, Wilson, Grymala, Schoonover(Eagle River), Shackleton, Amborn, Karshbaum
WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds
15 lap Feature Ryan Viltz(Chetek), Cory Crapser(Chippewa Falls), Matt Leer(Bruce), Tito Viltz(Rice Lake), Josh Smith(Rice Lake), Zach Manley(Cameron), Shane Halopka(Greenwood), Travis Anderson(Colfax), Joe Chaplin Jr(Cameron), Dusty Brown(Rice Lake), Darren LaBlonde
10 lap Heat 1 R. Viltz, Leer, T. Viltz, Crapser, Halopka
Heat 2 Chaplin Jr, Anderson, Brown, LaBlonde(Baldwin)
WISSOTA Street Stocks
15 lap Feature Doug Wojcik(Ladysmith), Cody Kummer(Medford), Sam Fankhauser(Cameron), Adam Soltis(Ladysmith), Ashley Husby(Menomonie), Joel Hinrichs(Chetek), Andy Cimfl(Turtle Lake), Ralph Stark(Withee), Jay Kesan(Weyerhaeuser), Nick Wojcik(Ladysmith), Jimmy Randall, Josh Wahlstrom, Carolyn Nosser
10 lap Heat 1 Kesan, Randall(Rice Lake), Soltis, N. Wojcik, Husby, Wahlstrom, Stark
Heat 2 Kummer, Fankhauser, D. Wojcik, Nosser(Sheldon), Cimfl, Hinrichs
12 lap Feature Jason Havel(Rice Lake), Bob Thompson(Cameron), Nick Traynor(Barron), John Erickson(Cameron), Darwin Brown(Cumberland), Jay Folz(Rice Lake), Cooper Berlin(Rice Lake), Dustin Doughty(Ladysmith), Josh Bach(Rice Lake), Jamey Fisher(Rice Lake), Bob Wahlstrom, Brandon Davis, Mike Schnider, Jon Wigchers, C.J. Wagner, Kendall Grover, Mike Grover, Chad Eastman
8 lap Heat 1 Thompson, Brown, Erickson, Doughty, Davis, Fisher, Folz, Eastman, K. Grover
Heat 2 Havel, Berlin, Traynor, Schnider, Bach, Wahlstrom, Wagner, Wigchers, M. Grover
July 9 Photos By Doug Zimmer & Chris Burback: