CLANTON, COPP AND KOCH TOP XR SUPERIOR SHOWCASE NIGHT #1
By Jerry O’Brien
Gondik Law Speedway Superior, WI
With zero chance of moisture falling on August 8th, conditions were excellent
as the first night of the long awaited XR Superior Showcase was set to begin.
Featuring the XR Dirt Super Late Models competing for $20,000 to win, a total
car count of 89 cars including 42 Dirt Super Late Models, 22 WISSOTA
Modifieds and 25 WISSOTA Super Stocks.
Group Qualifying was first for the Late Models done in two groups. Done three
cars at a time the session passed by quickly. Top qualifier in Qualifying Group A
was Shane Clanton with a time of 15.423 seconds around the four-tenths mile
speedway. Group B fast timer was Brandon Overton with a time of 15.508
Heat races were then run in all three classes. In the XR Late Models, heat one
was won by Clanton, heat two went to Joseph Joiner, Overton topped heat three
and Garrett Smith was the winner of heat four.
A Pair of 12 lap B Features were won by Kyle Strickler and Mike Marler.
The WISSOTA divisions qualified through heat races. In the Super Stocks,
fifteen year old Jace Lien, Scott Lawrence and Terran Spacek were the winners.
The Modified heat winners included Jody Bellefeuille, Cole Spacek and Darrell
The order for the main events were: Super Stocks first after intermission, 20
laps; XR Super Late Models next and Modifieds last.
Twenty-five Super Stocks rolled onto the speedway led by Scott Lawrence on
the pole and Dexton Koch on the outside. The first lap under green Lawrence and
Koch came across the line in a dead heat. Koch was able to slip into the lead with
Lawrence, Kyle Copp, Spacek, Lien and Darin Meierotto in the top five. While
Koch held the point, Copp got by Lawrence to second. Spacek was fourth and
Lien fifth. Behind that group it was Meierotto, Shane Sabraski, Matt Deragon and
Dan Nissalke. Koch and Copp proceeded to put some distance on Lawrence who
in turn had widen the gap to Spacek. A caution flag flew, the first of the race when
debris was spotted in the fourth turn. The restart came with nine laps remaining
and Koch firmly in first. A lap later the second caution flag flew for the spun car
of Fritz Myers, again in turn four. Then there were eight circuits to go when the
green flag again waved. Koch was firmly in control as racing resumed. Copp was
close behind as the laps rolled by. Koch took the white flag and won having led
every lap. Copp, Lawrence, Sabraski and Spacek finished in the top five.
Then it was time for the “Main Event”, 40 laps for 24 XR Dirt Super Late
Models, the stars of the XR Superior Showcase.
It was an all Georgia front row with Shane Clanton Zebulon GA on the pole
flanked by Brandon Overton Evans GA.
At the green flag, Clanton took the red #25 to the lead and began to put some
distance on Overton, Joseph Joiner and Garrett Smith. Coming forward to fifth
was Chris Madden and Ricky Weiss, the front order remained the same for several
laps as Clanton couldn’t be caught. Overton and Joiner continued in third and
forth until Weiss split up the two tens by climbing to fourth. While Clanton
widened his lead over Overton, Madden got past Weiss to fourth. The first and
only caution of the event flew with 13 laps remaining. On the restart, Clanton
continued to lead while Madden passed Joiner into third. Clanton was clearly
superior on this day and led every lap to take the win. Overton held off Madden
for second and Weiss got by Joiner to finish fifth.
The evening’s competition wrapped up with a 25 lap feature for the WISSOTA
Modifieds. As the 22 car field rolled out on the speedway veteren Kelly Estey was
on the pole with Cole Spacek to the outside. Behind Estey was Darrell Nelson and
Kelly Checkalski. At the green flag Spacek went to the front followed by Estey,
Nelson, Jody Bellefeuille and Daniel Bargender. Spacek held onto the lead in the
early scramble as Brandon Copp joined the front group in fifth. The first caution
flag flew early as an incident in turn three saw Mike Klippenstien’s #212 go off on
the hook. At the same time Shane Sabraski pulled off the track in a rare DNF. At
the restart, Copp stole the lead from Spacek and it was a pair of 22’s leading the
field. Nelson was third, Bellefeuille forth and Bargender held onto fifth. That
order held in the top five as Al Uotinen moved up to sixth. The second caution
flag flew when Tyler Kaeter spun in turn three. The green light turned on with
eight laps to go and Copp still holding off Cole Spacek. Nelson and Bellefeuille
moved forward pushing Spacek back to fourth and Bargender steady in fifth. Once
again a caution flag flew this time for a Jeffery Wood spin in the third turn. Copp
was still out front at the green flag, but two laps later yet another caution flag flew,
this time for a tangle between Billy Kendall and John Toppozini at the exit of turn
four. The green flag flew with Copp still holding sway there was another caution
flag, the restart came with six laps still to go. Copp was the leader but Bellefeuille
got past Nelson to second and began to harass Copp. As the laps ticked off, Copp
was able to fend off Bellefeuille to take the win. Bellefeuille, Nelson, Kendal and
Bargender finished in the top five. At Teching after the race, Cole Spacek’s #22
was disqualified for a rules infraction.