IRA Interstate Racing Association
THERE’S NO PLACE LIKE HOME – BALOG BACK IN IRA ACTION, SNARES VICTORY AT 141 SPEEDWAY!
THERE’S NO PLACE LIKE HOME – BALOG BACK IN IRA ACTION, SNARES VICTORY AT 141 SPEEDWAY!
Schultz Earns Fourth Straight Podium Takes Series Point Lead!
Francis Creek, WI, May 26, 2013 – Bill Balog is expanding his horizons in 2013, the five time and defending Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint champion indicated prior to the start of the racing season that he would be attempting to run more races outside the area while also trying his hand at some midget racing in 2013.
Balog’s return to IRA action this evening proved true the adage there’s no place like home as he was able to fend off some serious challenges by Steve Meyer enroute to his 47th career series victory and second of the 2013 racing season.
Tonight’s victory was not without its challenges however as Balog spent the early portions of the race giving chase to Meyer whose #85 ride seemed to have the speed top keep Balog behind him. Meyer would nick another machine in lapped traffic on lap 9 of the 30 lap A-main giving Balog an opportunity to slip past for the lead. Once out front Meyer was able to continue to pressure Balog to the finish but he was unable to reassume command of the race. Meyer who will be making limited appearances this season made the most of tonight’s effort finishing second.
In the early season point battle rookie of the year contender Jeremy Schultz is proving his talent as he now sits atop the series standings having collected his fourth consecutive third place finish.
A solid field of 32 entries attempted to qualify for tonight’s show which included Lucas Wolfe a former winner on the World of Outlaws tour who had finished second at Wilmot Raceway the previous night. Wolfe started out the evening at 141 Speedway by turning in the fastest qualifying time with a lap of 11.124 seconds around the tight third-mile clay oval. The rest of evening didn’t go as planned however a spin in the heat race resulted in a tangle with another car ending his night as repairs could not be made in time to compete in the B-main.
The event was also supported by a contingent 360 sprint drivers who compete at the nearby Plymouth and Manitowoc tracks adding a solid group of local racers to the mix. Some drivers placed iron block 410 engines which had been used in area Super Modified racing while others opted to run their 360 power plants. Scott Thiel fared best of the group with a solid fifth place finish.
22 drivers would accept the green flag for the start of the 30 lap A-main contest with polesitter Meyer getting the jump on fellow front row starter Scott Uttech who would work in behind Meyer in the runner-up spot. Balog, who had started fourth surpassed Phillip Mock for the third position before the conclusion of lap one. Balog then utilized the low groove to slip Uttech after a brief battle on the next circuit to reach second.
Out front Meyer was able to maintain a slight gap on Balog when he began to encounter lapped traffic beginning on lap seven. Meyer had to break his momentum after brief contact with a lapped car on lap nine which gave Balog an opportunity to sweep past for the lead.
Meyer was quick to recover and quickly reapplied the pressure to Balog seeking a way back to the top spot. Uttech meanwhile was able to keep the lead duo in sight running solidly in third ahead of Tommy Sexton who had worked his way up from seventh on the starting grid.
Uttech’s evening would turn sour as he suddenly slowed on lap 18 while running in the third spot bringing out the caution, this turned the position over to Sexton for the restart. Sexton’s time in the third slot was brief however as he looped in turn two just as the green flag waved for the restart. Sexton would retire to the pits as it was apparent that he got clipped by another car as the field attempted to avoid him.
This would leave Thiel in the third spot behind Balog and Meyer as the race resumed. Balog quickly went back to setting the pace and this time he was able to slowly pull away from Meyer. The third spot became hotly contested as Schultz made some bold moves to quickly surpass Mock for fourth and moments later began a duel with Thiel for third. The battle for third waged for the next several laps before Schultz was finally able to secure the position.
Mock would drop Thiel another spot with a handful of laps to go in the event as the top five drivers all ran within a second of one another.
Over the final laps Balog was able to extend his lead on Meyer to eight car lengths as he flashed under the checkered flag. Meyer in his best showing of 2013 earned second ahead of Schultz. Mock held onto fourth with Thiel comprising the top five finishers.
Former series regular Billy Hafemann making his first start in several seasons substituted for Mike Kertscher this evening taking a respectable sixth place finish. Ken Jay Fiedler, Jordan Goldsberry, Nick Alden and Bret Triplett comprised the top ten finishers.
18 of the 22 starters were still on the racing surface at the finish with 15 drivers still on the lead lap.
Todd King fared best of the drivers transferring from the B-main earning a 13th place finish.
The B-main saw 14 drivers start the contest with all but Jereme Schroeder reaching the checkered. Schroeder was attempting to work his way into contention for a transfer spot when he jumped the berm in turn four making contact with the wall. He was uninjured in the incident but done for the evening.
Dave Uttech would top the B-main event being chased to the checkered flag by Russel Borland. Wayne Modjeski, Kris Spitz, King, Brandon Thone and Darrell Dodd were the top seven finishers who transferred to the main event.
The only roll over of the evening occurred when Paul Pokorski clipped the ride of Wolfe who had spun in turn four and rolled down the front stretch. Neither driver was injured but both would scratch from any further events.
Wolfe was the evenings fast qualifier with a lap of 11.124 seconds, Balog was second quick with a time of 11.344 seconds. Mock who had turned in the fastest qualifying time the night before at Wilmot Raceway was third quick with evening with an 11.437 second orbit of the third-mile clay oval.
Next weekend the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints will present its busiest weekend of their 2013 schedule presenting three races at three different tracks in Northwestern Wisconsin.
The action begins at the St. Croix Valley Raceway located near St. Croix Falls, WI., on Friday Night May 31st, as the series makes it’s only appearance of the 2013 season at the quarter-mile oval for Winged 410 sprint cars.
The following evening on Saturday Night June 1st the tour heads down the road to Cedar Lake Speedway to participate in the tracks annual Triple Crown event. The show provides a prize of $3,000 to winner of the Bumper to Bumper IRA Sprint portion of the program. The banked third-mile oval is located near New Richmond, WI.
The weekend concludes on the largest track of the swing when the 3/8 mile high banked Eagle Valley Speedway hosts the series on Sunday Night June 2nd.
The IRA Outlaw Sprint Series is proudly supported by Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts & Service Centers, Hoosier Tire, Osborn & Son Trucking, TW Metals, Onan, Carriage Auto Body, Polaris DEFENSE, and Mother's Polishes and Waxes. The office of the IRA Sprints can be reached at 815-759-9269 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
Event: #4 141 Speedway – May 26, 2013
30 Lap A-main: Feature (30 Laps): 1. 17B-Bill Balog; 2. 85M-Steve Meyer; 3. 5J-Jeremy Schultz; 4. 1M-Phillip Mock; 5. 64-Scotty Thiel; 6. 80K-Billy Hafemann; 7. 95A-Ken Jay Fiedler; 8. 65-Jordan Goldesberry; 9. 8A-Nick Alden; 10. 22-Bret Tripplett; 11. 35-Ben Schmidt; 12. 2W-Scott Neitzel; 13. 97-Todd King; 14. 4K-Kris Spitz; 15. 68-Dave Uttech; 16. 53W-Bill Wirth; 17. 23-Russell Borland; 18. 11-Darrell Dodd; DNF 83-Tommy Sexton Jr; DNF 7-Scott Uttech; DNF 14AJ-Wayne Modjeski; DNF 94-Brandon Thone
B Feature (15 Laps): 1. 68-Dave Uttech; 2. 23-Russell Borland; 3. 14AJ-Wayne Modjeski; 4. 4K-Kris Spitz; 5. 97-Todd King; 6. 94-Brandon Thone; 7. 11-Darrell Dodd; 8. 12-Michael Decker; 9. 38-Allen Hafford; 10. 01-Chris Dodd; 11. 5-Bryon Walters; 12. 41-Dennis Spitz; 13. K9-Andrew Kiedrowski; DNF 43-Jereme Schroeder
First Heat (10 Laps): 1. 7-Scott Uttech; 2. 2W-Scott Neitzel; 3. 8A-Nick Alden; 4. 80K-Billy Hafemann; 5. 65-Jordan Goldesberry; 6. 23-Russell Borland; 7. 41-Dennis Spitz; 8. K9-Andrew Kiedrowski; DNF 5-Bryon Walters; DNF 82-Lucas Wolfe; DNF 4-Paul Pokorski
Second Heat (10 Laps): 1. 17B-Bill Balog; 2. 35-Ben Schmidt; 3. 95A-Ken Jay Fiedler; 4. 64-Scotty Thiel; 5. 85M-Steve Meyer; 6. 94-Brandon Thone; 7. 01-Chris Dodd; 8. 97-Todd King; 9. 43-Jereme Schroeder; 10. 38-Allen Hafford; DNS 7F-Lance Fassbender
Third Heat (10 Laps): 1. 83-Tommy Sexton Jr; 2. 53W-Bill Wirth; 3. 5J-Jeremy Schultz; 4. 1M-Phillip Mock; 5. 22-Bret Tripplett; 6. 14AJ-Wayne Modjeski; 7. 4K-Kris Spitz; 8. 68-Dave Uttech; 9. 11-Darrell Dodd; 10. 12-Michael Decker
Qualifying: 1. 82-Lucas Wolfe, 11.124 Seconds; 2. 17B-Bill Balog, 11.344 Seconds; 3. 1M-Phillip Mock, 11.437 Seconds; 4. 7-Scott Uttech, 11.612; 5. 85M-Steve Meyer, 11.669; 6. 5J-Jeremy Schultz, 11.682; 7. 8A-Nick Alden, 11.762; 8. 64-Scotty Thiel, 11.787; 9. 83-Tommy Sexton Jr, 11.790; 10. 80K-Billy Hafemann, 11.820
Next Event: St. Croix Valley Speedway – Friday Night, May 31, 2013
Article Credit: Jeffrey Sachse
Submitted By: Kim Tennyson