DOAR SWEEPS, VENDELA DOUBLES AT SUPERIOR FAIR RACES
By Jerry O’Brien
7-10/13-18 Superior. WI.
7-10/13-18 Superior. WI.
Races at the Head of the Lakes Fair held at the Gondik Law Speedway are
presented differently than the usual format. Racing is split up between two days
and how one pays to watch is a whole different matter. The first night of racing is
on Tuesday, presents WISSOTA Late Models, Super Stocks and Pure Stocks.
Entrance to the fairgrounds is free but the races cost $10 which is a $5 savings.
The second half presents WISSOTA Modifieds, Midwest Modifieds and Pure
Stocks an you pay to enter the fairgrounds but the racing is free.
Tuesday night drew the largest number of WISSOTA late Models thus far this
season for a weekly show with 21 cars in attendance. This included a visit from
Pat Doar, Mike Prochnow and the return to competition of Darrin Meierotto in a
second car fielded by Gregg Hill. The mid week venue also brought visitors Dave
Mass and Dexton Koch to the Super Stock ranks.
The trio of qualifying heats in the Late Models went to Dave Flynn driving the
Trevor Wilson owned #87, Steve Laursen in the T-18 and Doar. The pair of Super
Stock were won by Mass and Keith Kern. Dylan Shelton and Kyle Copp captured
the two Pure Stock heats.
In the fifteen lap Pure Stock main event, James Vendela recorded his first ever
career feature checkered flag. Vendela steered the #15 from the seventh starting
spot to the lead, battled with Jeremy Cash and held off Cory Jorgenson for the win.
Andrew Hanson, and Dylan Shelton rounded out the top five.
Dave Mass made his way from row number two into the lead in the 20 lap main
and steadily drove away from second place runner Kevin Burdick for the win in
the Super Stock Main event. Finishing in the top five were Dexton Koch, Nick
Oreskovich and Jim Campbell.
Friday night’s action at Gondik Law Speedway and the Head of the Lakes Fair
featured WISSOTA Pure Stocks, Midwest Modifieds and Modifieds. In Pure
Stock qualifying the heats were won by Kyle Copp and Jeremy Cash. With 26
Midwest Modifieds on hand, three heat races were needed to qualify as all cars
able to run were eligible for the feature. Nick Koehler made an infrequent
appearance and topped heat number one. Nick DaRonco handled Skeeter Estey in
heat number two and Mark Kangas was the winner in heat three. Former
WISSOTA Modified track champion ran away with the first heat and Niel Balduc
won heat number two over Todd Gehl.
First on the track for feature action was the pack of Pure Stocks. The 15 lap
event got off to a rough start showing three caution periods before two laps were
complete. The first came right away when Tyler Keup went around in turn two.
The next try made it a lap or so and gave a glimpse of who might be fast as James
Vendela gave notice he was after his second career feature win in a week. With
one lpa complete, Shaina Rapp brought out the yellow flag with a spin in turn
three. Once again the field lined up for a start, and once again the caution flag flew
for a multi-car tangle in turn one. The fourth try finally worked and Vendela
showed his hand as he took the lead followed by Kyle Copp, Aaron Bernick,
Joegenson and Trevor Treviranus. Vendela had the field handled and began to
slowly widen the gap over Copp. Jorgenson was firmly intrenched in third and all
the movement was further back in the pack as Shelton worked his way to fourth
with Rapp fifth and Treviranus sixth. Jorgenson caught up with Copp and a late
race battle developed. Around this time Shelton’s mount gave up and he pulled
into the infield. As Vendela drove toward his second win of the week, Jorgenson
muscled his way past Copp to finish second.
Next up it was 20 laps for the giant 26 car Midwest Modified field. Right off the
bat it was obvious that this was going to be a very competitive event as Skeeter
Estey, Nick DaRonco, Jason VandeKamp, etc. were going to be in a close battle
for the entire distance. Three laps in the first caution flag appeared when Craig
Lofdahl and Jeff Forseen tangled in turn four. The restart saw Estey, DaRonco,
VandeKamp, and Shane Howell joined by Mack Estey and a rapidly moving Dan
Kingsley already in the front mix from the sixth row. Another caution flag flew
when Gunner Peterson looped in turn two. At the green Estey kept the lead but
DaRonco, VandeKamp, Howell, Kingsley, Mack Estey, Nick Koehler, Ryan
Savoy and Deven VanHouse made the racing interesting. As the laps continued
without interruption, Estey was able to expand his lead while VandeKamp and
DaRonco continued their battle for second. Estey’s lead disappeared when caution
flag number three flew as someone went up in a cloud of smokr down the front
stretch. This caution flag set up a five lap shootout which produced another
caution flag for a tangle between VanHouse and Howell resulting in Howell’s car
being hauled off on the hook. The shootout was back on and Skeeter Estey pulled
down another victory. DaRonco won the race long battle for second while
Kingsley finished a solid fourth ahead of Koehler in the top five.
It looked as though Al Uotinen might pull off a sweep in the 20 lap Modified
main as he used his pole position to great advantage. At the green he grabbed the
lead and drove away from Danny Vang, Donnie Lofdahl, Cody Wolkowski and
Neil Balduc. The one to watch, however, proved to be Johnny Broking who started
fifth, dropped back several positions, then set sail for the front. As it became more
and more likely the race had a chance to go the distance without a sign of the
yellow laundry, the younger Broking began paitently picking ‘em off one by one
until he was past Vang for second. In the final six laps Broking was right on
Uotinen’s back bumper and was able to muscle his way to the front for the win.
Todd Gehl and Balduc finished fourth and fifth.
Coming up at Gondik Law Speedway on July 20th is Hall of Fame night as well
as a visit from Fastlane Northern Super Stock Series. It will be a busy night as a
visit from the Northern Vintage Stockcar racers is also on the card.