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Balog - Ten Time IRA Champion


IRA Interstate Racing Association

Balog - Ten Time IRA Champion

The final weekend in September traditionally signals the end of the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint Series season, and while 2020 has brought a lot of change, it did not change the Wisconsin Sprintcar Championships that has quickly became a staple of open wheel racing in the region.
Before teams could embark upon the Plymouth Dirt Track they first headed to the Dodge County Fairgrounds for the Rick Schmidt/Fuzzy Fassbender Memorial. At the big Dodge County half mile, the winged 410s were joined for the first time by the Wisconsin wingLESS series.
The wingless cars ran their feature first, and Ryan Zielski proved to be the man to beat, taking the early lead. Chris Dodd worked his way into the second spot but the laps were winding down and Zielski had amassed a nearly 4 second lead over Dodd. Dodd begin reeling Zielski in as they worked through lapped traffic, but time was not on Chris Dodd’s side, as the checkered flags waved Ryan Zielski was the winner in the series first visit.
Next it was the winged cars turn to take to the wicked fast half mile. Scotty Thiel took the early lead but Bill Balog was right on his tail. Thiel would hold Balog at bay for the majority of the feature event as the duo lapped up to the fifth position. Balog would eventually find a way past Thiel and into the lead. After falling back to second Thiel's luck would turn from bad to worse as contact between him and Blake Nimee would put the Scott Thiel Builders' car into the wall and cut down a tire. Thiel would restart in the fifth position by virtue of being on the lead lap, but there was just not enough time to mount a challenge, and Bill Balog would claim another victory.

Saturday meant it was finally time to crown 4 IRA champions, one in the Bumper to Bumper Winged Outlaw Sprints, one in the Wisconsin wingLESS series, one in the IRA Lightning Sprints, and one in the Hopf Farms Bullring Showdown for the winged sprints.
The Lightning sprints came into the night with CJ Malueg leading Mike Neau by just 31 points. Meaning Mike Neau could steal the championship away, but he would need to be nearly perfect and see a mistake or two from Johnsburg Illinois’ CJ Malueg. Mike Neau ran a consistent night qualifying fourth and finishing fourth in his heat before a fourth place effort in the A. That consistency would not be enough though as CJ Malueg picked up the feature win by .005 seconds over Mark Heinert claiming the 2020 Lightning Sprint Championship.

For the wingLESS portion of the night, the series ran an abbreviated format with the top 10 in points picked into the A main and a random invert setting their lineup while the rest of the field was split into two heat races based on their points position. Just 10 points separated series points leader Chris Klemko and 2019 Wilmot Raceway wingLESS champion Jimmy Sivia as the feature went green. The pair of championship contenders started side by side in row four and stayed right together for most of the feature race. The pair battled but Klemko was doing a good job of keeping Sivia's 91 machine behind him. Just past the halfway point of the race Sivia was able to work past Klemko but still could not separate himself from the 70 car piloted by Klemko. With just a handful of laps left it appeared Klemko had the championship won when the 6 car driven by Jake Kouba got spun around and Klemko with no where to go drove into him. Klemko would be forced to restart at the tail giving Sivia the edge. As Todd Booker waved the cross Checkered flags, Tim Cox claimed the victory over the Crane brothers, but it was 10th place finishing Jimmy Sivia claiming his first IRA championship.
With 2 champions crowned it was now time to run the winged cars. Bill Balog has already clinched his 10th championship so this feature would be all about the Hopf Farms Bullring Showdown and bragging rights. Balog quickly took the lead as Scotty Thiel moved into second. Thiel chases Balog into lapped traffic where the pair began to wage war. The duo sliced through lapped traffic exchanging the lead multiple times while moving through traffic. The second half of the race was marred by cautions, keeping the pair out of lapped traffic. With just two laps remaining Balog once again entered lapped traffic and Thiel looked poised to steal the lead back. On the white flag lap the pair ran down the back stretch, Balog entered turn three on the bottom while Thiel went high, Thiel pulled along side Balog in three, but then trouble would strike as Scott Biertzer broke an axle stalling out the 4B machine in turn four stacking cars up and Thiel with nowhere to go spun out. On the green white checkered attempt Balog was unchallenged and picked up the feature win as well as the Hopf Farms Bullring Showdown Championship. Scotty Neitzel and Jordan Goldesberry were second and third respectively in the showdown standing while Dave Uttech and Johnny Fahl also received awards from Dean and Stacy Hopf for competing in all five events. Special thanks to Dean and Stacy for all they do for the racers in this area, as well as the IRA. It is greatly appreciated.

Media Results for 9/26/2020 at Plymouth Dirt Track-Sheboygan Co Fgds - Plymouth, WI
410 Sprints 29 Entries
A Feature 1 30 Laps | 00:33:46.658

  1. 17B-Bill Balog[1]; 2. 73-Jake Blackhurst[4]; 3. 10W-Mike Reinke[6]; 4. 73AF-Joey Moughan[2]; 5. 5J-Jeremy Schultz[11]; 6. 2W-Scott Neitzel[8]; 7. 25T-Travis Arenz[17]; 8. 12W-Josh Walter[5]; 9. 23-Russel Borland[13]; 10. 55-Austin Deblauw[10]; 11. 0-John Fahl[20]; 12. 20R-Rob Pribnow[16]; 13. 65-Jordan Goldesberry[15]; 14. 9K-Kyle Schuett[12]; 15. 14R-Sean Rayhall[14]; 16. 64-Scotty Thiel[3]; 17. 4K-Kris Spitz[23]; 18. 68-Dave Uttech[7]; 19. 43-Jereme Schroeder[24]; 20. 29-Hunter Custer[19]; 21. 4B-Scott Biertzer[9]; 22. 79-Blake Nimee[18]; 23. 14-Jack Routson[21]; 24. 19-Todd Daun[22]

B Feature 1 12 Laps | 00:18:12.459

  1. 79-Blake Nimee[1]; 2. 29-Hunter Custer[2]; 3. 0-John Fahl[3]; 4. 14-Jack Routson[4]; 5. 19-Todd Daun[10]; 6. 4K-Kris Spitz[7]; 7. 43-Jereme Schroeder[5]; 8. 77-Kurt Davis[9]; 9. 7-Scott Uttech[6]; 10. 47-Todd King[8]; 11. 4-Bailey Goldesberry[11]

Dash 1 4 Laps | 00:00:49.970

  1. 17B-Bill Balog[1]; 2. 64-Scotty Thiel[4]; 3. 12W-Josh Walter[3]; 4. 68-Dave Uttech[2]; 5. 4B-Scott Biertzer[5]

Dash 2 4 Laps | 00:03:08.419

  1. 73AF-Joey Moughan[1]; 2. 73-Jake Blackhurst[5]; 3. 10W-Mike Reinke[3]; 4. 2W-Scott Neitzel[2]; 5. 55-Austin Deblauw[4]

Heat 1 10 Laps | 00:04:46.090

  1. 17B-Bill Balog[3]; 2. 9K-Kyle Schuett[1]; 3. 73AF-Joey Moughan[2]; 4. 73-Jake Blackhurst[4]; 5. 14R-Sean Rayhall[5]; 6. 65-Jordan Goldesberry[7]; 7. 79-Blake Nimee[6]; 8. 43-Jereme Schroeder[9]; 9. 77-Kurt Davis[8]; 10. 4-Bailey Goldesberry[10]

Heat 2 10 Laps | 00:03:47.704

  1. 68-Dave Uttech[1]; 2. 10W-Mike Reinke[3]; 3. 64-Scotty Thiel[4]; 4. 25-Danny Schlafer[5]; 5. 55-Austin Deblauw[2]; 6. 25T-Travis Arenz[10]; 7. 0-John Fahl[7]; 8. 7-Scott Uttech[9]; 9. 29-Hunter Custer[6]; 10. 19-Todd Daun[8]

Heat 3 10 Laps | 00:05:28.537

  1. 12W-Josh Walter[1]; 2. 5J-Jeremy Schultz[2]; 3. 2W-Scott Neitzel[3]; 4. 23-Russel Borland[5]; 5. 4B-Scott Biertzer[4]; 6. 20R-Rob Pribnow[7]; 7. 14-Jack Routson[8]; 8. 4K-Kris Spitz[9]; 9. 47-Todd King[6]

Qualifying 1 | 00:00:24.467 | Osborn and Son Trucking

  1. 73-Jake Blackhurst, 00:11.932[20]; 2. 64-Scotty Thiel, 00:11.944[17]; 3. 4B-Scott Biertzer, 00:11.984[13]; 4. 17B-Bill Balog, 00:12.029[26]; 5. 10W-Mike Reinke, 00:12.061[22]; 6. 2W-Scott Neitzel, 00:12.063[7]; 7. 73AF-Joey Moughan, 00:12.087[3]; 8. 55-Austin Deblauw, 00:12.095[1]; 9. 5J-Jeremy Schultz, 00:12.135[16]; 10. 9K-Kyle Schuett, 00:12.146[24]; 11. 68-Dave Uttech, 00:12.156[23]; 12. 12W-Josh Walter, 00:12.176[5]; 13. 14R-Sean Rayhall, 00:12.190[19]; 14. 25-Danny Schlafer, 00:12.237[15]; 15. 23-Russel Borland, 00:12.258[27]; 16. 79-Blake Nimee, 00:12.261[21]; 17. 29-Hunter Custer, 00:12.262[6]; 18. 47-Todd King, 00:12.278[4]; 19. 65-Jordan Goldesberry, 00:12.278[28]; 20. 0-John Fahl, 00:12.349[2]; 21. 20R-Rob Pribnow, 00:12.358[9]; 22. 77-Kurt Davis, 00:12.361[14]; 23. 19-Todd Daun, 00:12.389[10]; 24. 14-Jack Routson, 00:12.406[12]; 25. 43-Jereme Schroeder, 00:12.485[11]; 26. 7-Scott Uttech, 00:12.529[8]; 27. 4K-Kris Spitz, 00:12.530[25]; 28. 4-Bailey Goldesberry, 00:12.582[18]; 29. 25T-Travis Arenz, 00:12.716[29]

Hot Laps 1 | 00:11:58.216

  1. 17B-Bill Balog[26]; 2. 65-Jordan Goldesberry[28]; 3. 9K-Kyle Schuett[24]; 4. 10W-Mike Reinke[22]; 5. 25T-Travis Arenz[29]; 6. 73-Jake Blackhurst[20]; 7. 68-Dave Uttech[23]; 8. 23-Russel Borland[27]; 9. 79-Blake Nimee[21]; 10. 77-Kurt Davis[14]; 11. 4K-Kris Spitz[25]; 12. 25-Danny Schlafer[15]; 13. 14-Jack Routson[12]; 14. 64-Scotty Thiel[17]; 15. 14R-Sean Rayhall[19]; 16. 43-Jereme Schroeder[11]; 17. 5J-Jeremy Schultz[16]; 18. 4-Bailey Goldesberry[18]; 19. 4B-Scott Biertzer[13]; 20. 2W-Scott Neitzel[7]; 21. 20R-Rob Pribnow[9]; 22. 73AF-Joey Moughan[3]; 23. 7-Scott Uttech[8]; 24. 19-Todd Daun[10]; 25. 29-Hunter Custer[6]; 26. 47-Todd King[4]; 27. 12W-Josh Walter[5]; 28. 55-Austin Deblauw[1]; 29. 0-John Fahl[2]

Media Results for 9/25/2020 at Dodge County Fairgrounds - Beaver Dam, WI
410 Sprints 25 Entries
A Feature 1 23 Laps | 00:23:57.702 | Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts

  1. 17B-Bill Balog[3]; 2. 65-Jordan Goldesberry[6]; 3. 73-Jake Blackhurst[5]; 4. 64-Scotty Thiel[1]; 5. 73AF-Joey Moughan[4]; 6. 79-Blake Nimee[2]; 7. 2W-Scott Neitzel[13]; 8. 9K-Kyle Schuett[8]; 9. 23-Russel Borland[15]; 10. 5J-Jeremy Schultz[10]; 11. 4B-Scott Biertzer[11]; 12. 12W-Josh Walter[12]; 13. 20R-Rob Pribnow[22]; 14. 68-Dave Uttech[7]; 15. 14-Jack Routson[14]; 16. 47-Todd King[18]; 17. 25-Danny Schlafer[9]; 18. 29-Hunter Custer[17]; 19. 7-Scott Uttech[21]; 20. 0-John Fahl[19]; 21. 20-Doug Wondra[25]; 22. 77-Wayne Modjeski[23]; 23. 14R-Sean Rayhall[16]; 24. 4K-Kris Spitz[24]; 25. 43-Jereme Schroeder[20]

Dash 1 4 Laps | 00:04:08.950

  1. 64-Scotty Thiel[1]; 2. 17B-Bill Balog[3]; 3. 73-Jake Blackhurst[4]; 4. 68-Dave Uttech[2]; 5. 25-Danny Schlafer[5]

Dash 2 4 Laps | 00:03:09.794

  1. 79-Blake Nimee[1]; 2. 73AF-Joey Moughan[3]; 3. 65-Jordan Goldesberry[4]; 4. 9K-Kyle Schuett[2]; 5. 5J-Jeremy Schultz[5]

Heat 1 8 Laps | 00:06:02.998

  1. 68-Dave Uttech[1]; 2. 79-Blake Nimee[3]; 3. 73-Jake Blackhurst[2]; 4. 64-Scotty Thiel[4]; 5. 2W-Scott Neitzel[5]; 6. 29-Hunter Custer[6]; 7. 0-John Fahl[7]; 8. 77-Wayne Modjeski[8]; 9. 20-Doug Wondra[9]

Heat 2 8 Laps | 00:03:48.688

  1. 25-Danny Schlafer[1]; 2. 4B-Scott Biertzer[2]; 3. 17B-Bill Balog[4]; 4. 65-Jordan Goldesberry[3]; 5. 23-Russel Borland[6]; 6. 14R-Sean Rayhall[5]; 7. 7-Scott Uttech[8]; 8. 20R-Rob Pribnow[7]

Heat 3 8 Laps | 00:04:50.422

  1. 9K-Kyle Schuett[1]; 2. 12W-Josh Walter[2]; 3. 5J-Jeremy Schultz[3]; 4. 73AF-Joey Moughan[4]; 5. 14-Jack Routson[5]; 6. 47-Todd King[6]; 7. 43-Jereme Schroeder[7]; 8. 4K-Kris Spitz[8]

Qualifying 1 | 00:00:52.293 | Osborn and Son Trucking

  1. 64-Scotty Thiel, 00:16.641[19]; 2. 17B-Bill Balog, 00:16.827[17]; 3. 73AF-Joey Moughan, 00:16.898[18]; 4. 79-Blake Nimee, 00:17.004[15]; 5. 65-Jordan Goldesberry, 00:17.071[1]; 6. 5J-Jeremy Schultz, 00:17.076[10]; 7. 73-Jake Blackhurst, 00:17.085[14]; 8. 4B-Scott Biertzer, 00:17.126[6]; 9. 12W-Josh Walter, 00:17.214[2]; 10. 68-Dave Uttech, 00:17.308[12]; 11. 25-Danny Schlafer, 00:17.347[11]; 12. 9K-Kyle Schuett, 00:17.349[22]; 13. 2W-Scott Neitzel, 00:17.365[13]; 14. 14R-Sean Rayhall, 00:17.384[20]; 15. 14-Jack Routson, 00:17.426[8]; 16. 29-Hunter Custer, 00:17.446[5]; 17. 23-Russel Borland, 00:17.519[24]; 18. 47-Todd King, 00:17.569[25]; 19. 0-John Fahl, 00:17.768[16]; 20. 20R-Rob Pribnow, 00:17.870[9]; 21. 43-Jereme Schroeder, 00:17.916[23]; 22. 77-Wayne Modjeski, 00:17.980[21]; 23. 7-Scott Uttech, 00:18.159[4]; 24. 4K-Kris Spitz, 00:18.276[3]; 25. 20-Doug Wondra, 00:20.240[7]

Hot Laps 1 | 00:02:56.216

  1. 64-Scotty Thiel[19]; 2. 17B-Bill Balog[17]; 3. 73AF-Joey Moughan[18]; 4. 68-Dave Uttech[12]; 5. 5J-Jeremy Schultz[10]; 6. 73-Jake Blackhurst[14]; 7. 79-Blake Nimee[15]; 8. 9K-Kyle Schuett[22]; 9. 14R-Sean Rayhall[20]; 10. 47-Todd King[25]; 11. 25-Danny Schlafer[11]; 12. 2W-Scott Neitzel[13]; 13. 65-Jordan Goldesberry[1]; 14. 23-Russel Borland[24]; 15. 43-Jereme Schroeder[23]; 16. 0-John Fahl[16]; 17. 12W-Josh Walter[2]; 18. 14-Jack Routson[8]; 19. 4B-Scott Biertzer[6]; 20. 77-Wayne Modjeski[21]; 21. 20R-Rob Pribnow[9]; 22. 29-Hunter Custer[5]; 23. 7-Scott Uttech[4]; 24. 4K-Kris Spitz[3]; 25. 20-Doug Wondra[7]

Article Credit: Gared Tennyson

Submitted By: Kim Tennyson

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