BUCHANAN, Wis. (June 1, 2023) – Brent Strelka bounced back in a big way by capturing Thursday night’s Fox River Racing Club 35-lap Schmitty’s Tickets Super Late Model feature at Wisconsin International Raceay.
The win comes a week after Strelka was sidelined early due to an exhaust leak that crept into the cockpit of his race car. Strelka patiently outlasted early-race leader Nick Van, taking the lead at the halfway point of the feature and cruising to the win.
Van seized the lead and paced the field at the drop of the green. Strelka, Jordan Thiel, Grant Griesbach, and Lowell Bennett followed into the Top Five. Strelka began sizing up Van just before a caution involving Jeff VanOudenhoven and Michael Anthony paused the action on lap six.
On the restart Van was able to jump away from Strelka, who began to feel the heat from Griesbach. Meanwhile, Braison Bennett was charging the outside line, and secured Third by lap ten.
As the laps clicked off, Strelka began to reel in Van. He grabbed the inside line on lap 17 and made the pass for the lead one lap later. At the same time Griesbach swiped Third from Braison Bennett.
Strelka went on to build a sizeable advantage, leaving Van to deal with Griesbach, Thiel, and fast qualifier Maxwell Schultz. On lap 24 Griesbach was able to swipe Second with Thiel and Schultz in tow. By this point Strelka’s lead was too large to overcome. Griesbach was able to hold off several challenges from Thiel, Schultz finished Fourth, and Lowell Bennett rounded out the Top Five.
LATE PASS NETS VANDERLOOP LATE MODEL WIN
JJ Vanderloop muscled his way past Brandon Reichenberger late in the Fox City’s Towing Late Model 20-lap feature to score his first victory of the season. The second-year Late Model racer is off to a hot start with the feature win and two fast times to start 2023.
TJ Spierowski set the tone early by grabbing the lead. As the field began to settle behind him a caution fell when Will Timmers made contact with the wall at the exit of turn four on lap eight. On the restart Reichenberger powered into the lead past Spierowski.
One lap after the restart Vanderloop cruised into Second and set his sights on Reichenberger. Vanderloop caught Reichenberger on lap 16 and was able to move past him into the top spot. Behind him, Bryan Monday was in close pursuit. He swiped the Second spot immediately.
Monday kept close pace behind Vanderloop, but was unable to challenge. Reichenberger went on to take Third behind them, Brian Henry was Fourth, and Todd Verhagen was Fifth.
LORBIECKI AND SPOO TAKE QUARTER-MILE LATE MODEL CHECKERED FLAGS
A highly competitive Pete’s Auto Quarter-Mile Late Model division saw two different winners take the twin 15-lap features. Russ Lorbiecki scored his first QMLM win in the first event, while Rick Spoo outlasted Braison Bennett in the second.
Lorbiecki grabbed the lead early in the first 15-lap feature. A yellow with four laps remaining brought some challengers, but Lorbiecki was able to hold off the advances of Bob Duchow. Ty Fietzer was Third, Henry Neerdaels Fourth, and Dan Thompson was Fifth.
The second feature saw Spoo take an early lead. Bennett jumped to the outside to grab Second, then set his sights on Spoo beginning on lap three. Getting to the outside, Bennett pulled even with Spoo, but couldn’t find enough grip to secure the lead. Spoo used the preferred line to charge back ahead at halfway.
Spoo went on to win with Bennett Second, Neerdaels Third, Fietzer Fourth, and Thompson Fifth.
WENZEL WALKS THE HIGH LINE TO VICTORY
The outside lane opened up early for Dylan Wenzel in the 20-lap Novus Auto Glass Super Stock feature. He took advantage of the open real estate, soaring to the lead by lap seven and not looking back on his way to his second win of the season.
Adam Peterman took an early lead. The rest of the field settled to the inside line behind him, with the exception of Wenzel. On lap five Wenzel surged from Fifth to Third. Two laps later he had the lead.
A caution stalled the action on lap 11 for a tangle involving Cody Vanderloop, Shane Krueger and Jeff Treml. On the restart Wenzel dashed away again, leaving Peterman to try to fend off Mitch Meyerhofer.
As Wenzel cruised to the win, Meyerhofer took Second away. George Schwalbach was Third, and Tony Wilz and Chuck Gilbertson rounded out the Top Five.
CODY VANDERLOOP SWEEPS THE SPORT TRUCKS
Back to his Championship form from a couple seasons ago, Cody Vanderloop was a force in the Wisconsin Sport Trucks on Thursday night. He set fast time, won his heat, and took the 20-lap feature event.
Chaos was the name of the game at the start and on a lap-one restart. The second restart saw Kasey Vanderloop and Cody Vanderloop jump from the second row into the top two spots. They were followed by Landon Braatz and Kyle Quella.
Another yellow at halfway reset the field with Kasey Vanderloop still holding off Cody. On a single file restart, Cody began to challenge his brother. Eventually he was able to find the inside line and grab the lead.
Kasey Vanderloop fell back slightly as his truck appeared to be losing grip. Quella took the Second spot and looked to keep pace with Cody Vanderloop. However, Cody Vanderloop was able to weave through traffic and grab the win. Quella was Second, Kasey Vanderloop recovered to finish Third, Braatz was Fourth, and Jason Vanhandel was Fifth.
BACK-TO-BACK WINS FOR OPSAHL IN SIZZLIN’ 4S
For the second straight week Mitch Opsahl put on a clinic in the Roundabout Bar and Grill Sizzlin’ 4s by setting fast time and taking the 20-lap feature win.
After a red flag and a pause to clean fluid off the racing surface, the field was shown the green again just before the halfway point of the feature. Leon Frahm held the early lead and was soon challenged by Jeremy Czarapata and Opsahl.
The outside line was open for Opsahl who cruised to the lead on lap 11. Two laps later Justin Fickel was able to take Second. Despite a late surge, Fickel was unable to challenge Opsahl. Behind them Eli Schommer edged ahead of Frahm for Third at the line.
FORTUNE TURNS TO FAVOR BEATTIE IN FIGURE 8S
Last week misfortune took away a potential win away from Ethan Beattie. This week he was in the right place at the right time to secure his first win behind the wheel of the Terry Van Roy #14.
Nick Ostberg took the lead from Mitch Opsahl and Josh Anthony when the two made contact. From lap three on, Ostberg was hounded by Beattie. As the race went on, it was apparent that something in the rear end of the Ostberg machine wasn’t right.
Ostberg had difficulty controlling his machine and ducked off with two laps remaining. Beattie was there to capitalize and held off a late charge from Mike Meyerhofer. Dan Gracyalny was Third, Russ Lorbiecki was Fourth, and Tyler Vanderbloemen was Fifth.
L&S Electric helps kick off the 52nd Annual Red White and Blue State Championship with the Red Race for the Super Late Models, Late Models, Super Stocks, Wisconsin Sport Trucks, Sizzlin’ 4s, Figure 8s and Rovals. Racing begins at 6:30.