KAUKAUNA, Wis. (August 18, 2022) – This week it was Jeff VanOudenhoven’s to turn up the temperature in the Super Late Model point battle. The five-time Fox River Racing Club Champ soared from behind the invert in the 35-lap Pierce Manufacturing feature event, grabbing his second win of 2022.
Although his margin of victory may not have told the story, VanOudenhoven admitted it was frantic moving through the field.
“That was some hard racing, we were rubbing down the backstretch,” VanOudenhoven said. “I know it’s hard to see from the stands, but that was crazy. It was good racing.”
VanOudenhoven took advantage of a restart on lap 16 to cruise past fellow Championship contender Dalton Zehr, Grant Griesbach, and eventually Sawyer Effertz. Once out front VanOudenhoven flexed his muscle, maintaining a healthy advantage over the second half of the race.
Making his first appearance since claiming the 2021 FRRC Super Late Model title, Max Schultz led the field to green alongside Michael Anthony. It was Anthony who took the early advantage until Schultz stole the lead on lap six. He brought Sawyer Effertz into Second one lap later.
The wildest moment of the main happened on lap seven. While racing for position Braison Bennett, Grant Griesbach, and Chad Butz scrambled after some contact on the front stretch. Zehr swung to the outside and surged pas the trio. Behind him VanOudenhoven avoided the melee by tucking in behind Griesbach.
Once the dust settled Effertz had closed in on Max Schutz while Zehr was in Third and VanOudenhoven was challenging Griesbach for Fourth. Effertz made his move to the top spot on lap 13 with Zehr following closely behind. The only caution of the race then fell for a spun Trevor Vandermolen on lap 16. The restart pitted Zehr and Effertz in the front row with VanOudenhoven and Griesbach in row two.
When the green fell, Effertz outdueled Zehr from the outside line, bringing Griesbach along. VanOudenhoven then seized the opportunity to slip past Zehr and Griesbach using the high line to take Second. On lap 20 VanOudenhoven found his opening and cruised into the lead.
As VanOudenhoven opened up his lead, Zehr’s machine came back to life. He took Third from Griesbach on lap 24, then took second four laps later. VanOudenhoven’s lead proved large as he went on to grab the win. Behind Zehr in Second, Effertz was Third, Griesbach Fourth and Braison Bennett made a late move to take Fifth.
BEATTIE’S BUZZER BEATER TOPS LATE MODEL MAIN
Opportunity came just in the nick of time for Evan Beattie to grab his first 20-lap Late Model feature win of the season. Beattie kept the pressure on Jason Vandenberg in the late stages of the feature then slipped to the inside through the final set of turns and won a drag race to the stripe.
Officially it was Beattie’s first win in the Late Model class, despite crossing the line first earlier this season and having the win vacated by a tech infraction.
Vandenberg ran an impressive race in his first appearance of the 2022 season. He took the lead early and built up an advantage as the race from Third on back heated up. On lap five Brady Baldry took Third, bringing Nate Van Wychen and Justin Woller along.
Beattie made his move to Third on lap seven, slipping past Baldry. Once again Van Wychen and Woller followed suit. At the halfway point Beattie was able to track down Matt Wittman and slide around the outside to grab Second. Van Wychen attacked on the next lap, swinging to Third using the inside line.
As the laps clicked off, Beattie slowly reeled in Vandenberg. Despite catching him with two laps remaining, it looked as though Beattie had run out of time. That was until Vandenberg bobbled slightly entering turn three on the final lap. Beattie seized the opening and pulled even. The duo charged to the line out of turn four with Beattie ahead by a nose at the line.
Van Wychen finished Third behind the leaders, Woller was Fourth, and Bryan Monday made a late move to round out the Top Five.
TREML TRIUMPHS IN SUPER STOCK NAIL-BITER
Just like the Late Model main, the Super Stock 20-lap feature came down to the wire. However, the advantage remained with the driver out front. Jeff Treml was able to hold off a strong, last-ditch effort from Josh Mueller to claim his first feature win of the season.
Clint Evans set the pace in the early stages of the race with Andy Casavant and Mueller making some daring moved to climb into the Top Five. In front of them, Treml was hounding Evans. He eventually found an opening and took the lead on lap six.
At the halfway point Casavant darted to the outside of Treml, attempting to take the lead. It didn’t work out, however, as he surrendered a spot to Trevor Howard. Howard then rode in the tire tracks of Treml, awaiting his opportunity.
While the leaders rode, Mueller decided to jump to the high line, and started making some headway on the outside of Casavant. Mueller continued to push forward and soon looked as though he might challenge for Second late in the race.
Just after the white flag fell, Treml slid to the bottom line, ensuring Howard could not find the bottom entering turn one. The move freed up space for Mueller on the outside to challenge for the lead. As the field charged out of turn four to the checkered flag Treml was just able to stay ahead of the hard-charging Mueller.
The Top Five remained in a close cluster with Howard emerging in Third, Cody Vanderloop Fourth, and Casavant settling for Fifth.
VANDERLOOP CLOSES SPORT TRUCK POINT GAP WITH FOURTH WIN
Cody Vanderloop used Thursday night’s 20-lap Sport Truck feature to remind everyone the division’s point battle is far from over. Vanderloop set fast time and claimed his fourth win of the season, tightening the gap between himself and point leader Bobby Wautier.
Jared Danke and Tanner Fickel exchanged the lead in the early portion of the race. Swiftly, Vanderloop was challenging inside the Top Three. He took the lead on lap four and started to set a blistering pace.
The battle behind Cody Vanderloop heated up between Kasey Vanderloop and Wautier. The duo scrapped for the runner-up spot for most of the second half of the race. Eventually Wautier took the spot with two laps to go, but Vanderloop held strong and challenged again. Officials deemed the challenge to be overly aggressive and scored Vanderloop at the tail of the field.
Cody Vanderloop went on to a large advantage over Wautier in Second. After the alteration to the finishing order Kylee Vandermoss was Third, Kyle Quella Fourth, and Tanner Fickel was Fifth.
OPSAHL STRIKES IN SIZZLIN’ 4S
Mitch Opsahl grabbed his first win of 2022 in strong fashion, dominating the 20-lap feature event.
Jacobi Pollei took the lead at the drop of the green, but immediately was pressured by Opsahl. Opsahl made his move on lap five, slipping around the outside of Pollei to the lead. As he set sail out front, Eli Schommer grabbed Second while Tom Schweitzer, Justin Fickel, and Gavin Klein were moving through the field.
Schweitzer took Third on lap 11, bringing Klein into Third a few laps later. Klein then surged past Schweitzer and Schommer to grab Second, leaving the duo to battle for Third.
Opsahl went on to win by just over 1.7 seconds over Klein. Schweitzer took Third, and Fickel slipped past Schommer for Fourth in the final laps of the race.
MEYERHOFER RETURNS TO FIGURE 8 VICTORY LANE
After a serious injury to his right hand this off-season, Mike Meyherhofer had to make some adjustments and re-learn a few day-to-day tasks. One thing he didn’t have to re-learn was how to celebrate after a Figure 8 win.
Meyerhofer secured an early lead in the Figure 8 main and survived a mid-race restart to take the win in just his second appearance of the season. He commented in Victory Lane that he’s had to make some adjustments to his driving style, but ultimately feels good back behind the wheel.
Terry Van Roy was Second, Russ Lorbiecki finished Third, Ethan Beattie was Fourth, and Matt Bauer was Fifth.
MCKEEVER BACK TO ROVAL GLORY
Austin McKeever surged to an early lead in the 10-lap Rockin’ Roval feature and ran away from the pack to claim his third win this season.
Viking Electric presents the Fox River Racing Club Thursday night action. The Super Late Models, Late Models, WIR ¼-Mile Late Models, Super Stocks, Wisconsin Sport Trucks, Sizzlin’ 4s, and Figure 8s are back in action. Racing begins at 6:30.