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IRA Interstate Racing Association



September 27, 2014; Beaver Dam, WI – If you could have seen a 410 winged sprint main event, where the lead swaps back and forth between two hard charging drivers, on the fastest track in the state, in a non-stop contest that is settled on the final lap, would you have bought a ticket to see it?

Many race fans answered yes!

A standing room only crowd was able to witness 2014 Knoxville Raceway champion Ian Madsen take advantage of the mechanical misfortune of one of IRA’s best, Mike Reinke, to steal the lead in a green to checkered A-main on the final lap. Reinke was able to nurse his ailing ride home to just edge out Terry McCarl for runner-up honors in a race that went green to checker without interruption.

The “Checkered Classic” at Dodge County Fairgrounds was a fitting end to the 2014 racing season for the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints.

The final event of the year also crowned Bill Balog champion for the seventh consecutive season. Balog had destroyed his car last evening at Luxemburg Speedway in a wild heat race flip. His team scrambled to put together his backup machine, which was completed in time to attend tonight’s race. After setting the fastest qualifying time, Balog finished eighth in the main event to edge out Plainsfield, Indiana native Bill Rose for the 2014 title.

When the final tally was complete Balog had amassed 3149 points to Rose’s 3041 points. A margin of just 108 markers. It was the closest title chase since Balog edged out Neitzel by 27 points for his first of seven title efforts in 2008.

Third place in the final standings saw a margin of just five markers. Neitzel had earned the spot with 2940, while Reinke earned 2935. Rookie Scotty Thiel scored 2,850 points for fifth

Rookies had claimed three of the top six in the standings as Ben Schmidt grabbed the spot with 2667 points. In the history of the Bumper to Bumper IRA Sprints it was the best ever effort by a rookie class as a whole.

The focus this evening was the 25 lap Checkered Classic A-main.

With a deep invert the fastest qualifier, Balog, started in the 10th position when the starting field rolled trackside

Dave Uttech found himself on the pole as the field rolled trackside. Tonight’s’ pre race salute to the fans utilized the missing man formation to honor fallen racer Scott Semmelmann.

Once flagman Jim Barr’s green flag waved, the contest would go without interruption for its duration. Uttech found himself slipping from the lead to the third spot as the first lap completed with Steve Meyer shooting into the lead, and Madsen working his way into the second spot.

Meyer, who had placed himself on the podium in his last appearance at Dodge County Fairgrounds back in June managed to open up a small gap on Madsen.

Further back Reinke was making quick work of his rivals. After starting in the eighth spot he was able to slice his way into the third position by lap three.

Reinke soon began to reel in Madsen who in turn had closed the gap on Meyer with the trio in close formation by lap five. Madsen attempted to slip under Meyer on lap eight but Meyer repelled the challenge. Reinke took advantage of the situation sweeping to the outside and rocketing past Madsen for second.

Meyer’s time at the front concluded on lap ten when Meyer opted for the low groove to work past lapped cars, while Reinke chose his signature high line. Reinke’s decision had proven successful working into the lead down the backstretch with Madsen in tow.

Deeper in the field McCarl had been making steady forward progress reaching fourth by lap ten, and then relieving Meyer of the third spot on the next circuit.

Out front Reinke had his hands full as Madsen applied the pressure. On lap 15 Reinke attempted to put a lap on Phillip Mock but his initial effort fell short allowing Madsen to close, and then slip past for the lead on lap 15.

Reinke was quick to rally, closing back in on Madsen, and on lap 17 he reclaimed the top spot. Once back in the lead Reinke began to open the gap that had grown to a dozen car lengths with five laps to go.

Reinke appeared to have the speed to claim this third win of the 2014 season, but with two laps to go the sound of his engine changed from a throaty roar to a more muted sound. It became apparent he had engine issues, as Madsen quickly closed the gap heading for the final lap. Coming down the front stretch to start the final circuit Madsen swept past Reinke who no longer had the speed to challenge. Madsen motored away over the final circuit to earn his second Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint series victory of the season. Madsen had won the Jerry Richert Memorial event at Cedar Lake at the beginning of the month is similar fashion; in that contest Madsen took the lead from Balog on the final circuit.

Over the final lap Reinke was able to nurse enough speed out of his ride to reach the line just ahead of a fast closing McCarl to take second. McCarl had to settle for the third spot.

Meyer was able to lay claim to the fourth spot with Scotty Neitzel comprising the top five finishers.

Rose, who was in contention for the season title throughout the 2014 season earned a sixth place run. Extraordinarily consistent, Rose started every A-main this year, and suffered only a single dnf. The end result was a second place point finish and a lock on the Rookie of the Year title in his first full season of IRA competition.

Seventh went to Knoxville Speedway regular Ryan Bunton. Balog quietly completed the race in eighth place, and effort that placed a seventh series title in his hands based largely on the strength of his 11 victories this season.

Dodge County Speedway track record holder Travis Whitney earned ninth this season ahead of rookie Scotty Thiel who completed his initial season with the IRA sprints with a 10th place showing.

With 30 drivers checked into the pit area the B-main was an important step for several front-runners to make the main event. Travis Whitney, who had checked out on the field, captured the contest. Raymond Hensley finished the race in second, he had been relegated to the B-main after a miscue which saw him pass by the scales after winning his heat race thereby negating that effort. Scott Uttech, Todd King, Jason Johnson, Kris Spitz and Blake Nimee all transferred to the main event.

Heat races were won by Bunton, Dave Uttech and Jeremy Schultz was awarded the win in the second heat after Hensley missed the scales.

Balog was fastest of the evening in qualifications with a lap of 16.250 seconds, narrowly missing the track record established by Whitney back in 2004. McCarl was second quick at 16.639, while Reinke notched the third fastest effort with a lap of 16.666 seconds.

The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints will celebrate the 2014 season with their awards banquet on Saturday night November 22nd at the Brookfield Inn & Suites in Brookfield, WI.

The series officials and teams would like to thank the fans for helping make the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints one of the most successful sprint series in the nation and we look forward to presenting you another exciting schedule in 2015.

IRA proudly concludes it’s 2014 season backed by its long time supporting series partners led by title sponsor Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts & Service Centers, and associate series partners Osborn & Son Trucking, TW Metals, Hoosier Tire, Cedar Creek Motorsports, Cummins Onan, and Carriage Auto Body.

The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints are a featured member of a website dedicated to bringing fans the best possible coverage of local short track racing.
For more information on the IRA Outlaw Sprints check out the tour website at or by logging onto the series Facebook page at the series is also on twitter at #IRA_sprints.
IRA Sprint Cars - IRA Interstate Racing Association
Event #24 – Dodge Co. Fairgrounds Speedway – Beaver Dam, WI – September 27, 2014
IRA Sprint Cars | IRA Interstate Racing Association
“Checkered Classic” A Feature (25 Laps): 1. 18-Ian Madsen[3]; 2. 02-Mike Reinke[8]; 3. 24-Terry McCarl[9]; 4. 85M-Steve Meyer[2]; 5. 2W-Scott Neitzel[6]; 6. 6-Bill Rose[4]; 7. 7K-Ryan Bunton[7]; 8. 17B-Bill Balog[10]; 9. 16-Travis Whitney[11]; 10. 64-Scotty Thiel[5]; 11. 5J-Jeremy Schultz[14]; 12. 23-Russell Borland[19]; 13. 4B-Scott Biertzer[12]; 14. 73-Todd King[21]; 15. 1M-Phillip Mock[13]; 16. 53W-Bill Wirth[16]; 17. 68-Dave Uttech[1]; 18. 70-Raymond Hensley[17]; 19. 99-Kyle Marten[15]; 20. 79-Blake Nimee[24]; 21. 44-Jason Johnson[22]; 22. 7-Scott Uttech[20]; 23. 4K-Kris Spitz[23]; 24. (DNF) 14AJ-Wayne Modjeski[18]
Behling Racing Products B Feature (12 Laps): 1. 16-Travis Whitney[1]; 2. 70-Raymond Hensley[3]; 3. 7-Scott Uttech[6]; 4. 73-Todd King[11]; 5. 44-Jason Johnson[5]; 6. 4K-Kris Spitz[7]; 7. 79-Blake Nimee[8]; 8. 5-Bryon Walters[2]; 9. 41-Dennis Spitz[9]; 10. 71-Chad Tessman[10]; 11. (DNF) 94-Brandon Thone[4]; DNS 43-Jereme Schroeder
Weld Racing Heat 1 (8 Laps): 1. 7K-Ryan Bunton[5]; 2. 1M-Phillip Mock[2]; 3. 18-Ian Madsen[3]; 4. 17B-Bill Balog[6]; 5. 64-Scotty Thiel[4]; 6. 53W-Bill Wirth[1]; 7. 7-Scott Uttech[8]; 8. 94-Brandon Thone[7]; 9. 79-Blake Nimee[9]; 10. 41-Dennis Spitz[10]
Diversified Machine Inc. Heat 2 (8 Laps): 1. 70-Raymond Hensley[1]; 2. 5J-Jeremy Schultz[2]; 3. 85M-Steve Meyer[3]; 4. 24-Terry McCarl[6]; 5. 6-Bill Rose[4]; 6. 23-Russell Borland[8]; 7. 44-Jason Johnson[7]; 8. 16-Travis Whitney[5]; 9. 73-Todd King[9]; 10. 71-Chad Tessman[10]
All Star Performance Heat 3 (8 Laps): 1. 68-Dave Uttech[1]; 2. 4B-Scott Biertzer[3]; 3. 2W-Scott Neitzel[5]; 4. 02-Mike Reinke[6]; 5. 99-Kyle Marten[2]; 6. 14AJ-Wayne Modjeski[7]; 7. 5-Bryon Walters[4]; 8. (DNF) 4K-Kris Spitz[8]; DNS 43-Jereme Schroeder
Osborn & Son Trucking Qualifying: 1. 17B-Bill Balog, 16.250[1]; 2. 24-Terry McCarl, 16.639[13]; 3. 02-Mike Reinke, 16.666[3]; 4. 7K-Ryan Bunton, 16.747[29]; 5. 16-Travis Whitney, 16.778[27]; 6. 2W-Scott Neitzel, 16.958[26]; 7. 64-Scotty Thiel, 17.080[15]; 8. 6-Bill Rose, 17.107[16]; 9. 5-Bryon Walters, 17.136[5]; 10. 18-Ian Madsen, 17.154[23]; 11. 85M-Steve Meyer, 17.231[14]; 12. 4B-Scott Biertzer, 17.242[8]; 13. 1M-Phillip Mock, 17.265[7]; 14. 5J-Jeremy Schultz, 17.361[30]; 15. 99-Kyle Marten, 17.448[6]; 16. 53W-Bill Wirth, 17.452[2]; 17. 70-Raymond Hensley, 17.579[21]; 18. 68-Dave Uttech, 17.583[24]; 19. 94-Brandon Thone, 17.636[12]; 20. 44-Jason Johnson, 17.663[11]; 21. 14AJ-Wayne Modjeski, 17.714[10]; 22. 7-Scott Uttech, 17.723[18]; 23. 23-Russell Borland, 17.734[4]; 24. 4K-Kris Spitz, 17.745[17]; 25. 79-Blake Nimee, 17.979[28]; 26. 35-Ben Schmidt, 18.211[20]; 27. 43-Jereme Schroeder, 18.417[22]; 28. 41-Dennis Spitz, 18.484[19]; 29. 71-Chad Tessman, 21.551[25]; DNS 73-Todd King

Submitted By: Jeffrey Sachse

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