UOTINEN, AKERVIK, AARTHUS, DOUGHTY, SOLEM TOP FEATURES NIGHT ONE OF 33RD ANNUAL NORTHERN NATIONALS
By Jerry O’Brien 9-9-21
Superior, WI (Night One)
Superior, WI (Night One)
I have just been informed that the disqualification of DeJay Jarecki in the Hornet Feature at Gondik Law Speedway in Superior has been changed. It seems he is NOT disqualified after all.
The 33rd edition of the Northern Nationals at the Gondik Law Speedway kicked off on September 9th on a perfect day for racing, no wind, no rain nothing to cause any problems.
Night one is an extra night added to the Northern Nationals a few years ago to
showcase some of the lower divisions in WISSOTA including Midwest
Modifieds, Super Stocks Street Stocks, Pure Stocks, Hornets and Renegade
Northern Sprint Cars.
Before we go any further, it should be noted that there was a practice session
on Wednesday September 8th. Last year track officials came up with an idea to pit
the WISSOTA Super Stocks against the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds in a 20 lap
shootout. This season a sponsor came aboard resulting in the winner receiving
$2000 to win, dubbed the “Showdown in Souptown”. The idea was to invite the
top eight point finishers in each division to run a 16 car 20 lap feature. The 2021
winner was rookie driver Brady Uotinen in the Midwest Modifieds after a thrilling
battle with 2021 Super Stock track champion Dave Flynn. (See Results below)
A total of 90 cars were on hand for the opening night of the Northern Nationals
which featured five divisions. The largest turnout of racers turned out to be the
Midwest Modifieds with 33 entries.
Qualifying heats in the five divisions were run with the winners as follows:
WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds Brady Uotinen, David Simpson, Andrew Inman
and young sensation fourteen year old Kennedy Swan. With the large amount of
cars on hand there were pair of B Features won by fifteen year old Cole Boston
and third generation rookie driver Tanner Gehl. Aaron Bernick and defending
champion Mike Schnider were the Pure Stock heat winners while Dustin Doughty
and Travis Loew won Street Stock heats. Ken Hron and Paul Schultz were the heat
winners in the Northern Renegade Non winged Sprint Cars.
After a short intermission, the Renegade Sprints came out for there 20 lap main
event. KC Hawkinson and Danny Wait, Jr led the 14 car field onto the speedway.
At the initial green Hawkinson leapt into the lead and led the first circuit
shadowed by Lance Solem and Wait, Jr. That was the only lap led by someone
other than Solem as he quickly took control on lap two and raced out to a
commanding lead. Hawkinson, Wait, Jr, Caley Emerson and Hron gave chase.
While Solem solidified his lead those behind, while trying to run the leader down,
fought amongs themselves for second. Paul schultz who had started sevent, joined
the pursuit group and asserted himself as he captured second place. Emerson took
third and was joined by “The Joker” the #30 of Chris Lewis while Hawkenson
slipped back to fifth. Solem blasted away from the field to that commanding lead,
but the first caution flag flew when Wait, Jr spun in turns one and two. At the
restart green flag Solem was quick on the draw and maintained his lead over
Schultz but before the lap could be completed the caution flag flew again this time
for Mike Mueller who spun in almost the same spot as Wait, Jr. The restart came
with 12 laps still to go and Solem still in the lead. From there to the checkered flag
no more caution flags and the same leader to the victory. Behind he and Schultz
there was a lot of movement as Nueller and Wait, Jr tried to make up for their
earlier problems blasting up through the field was Lewis who would finish third
behind Schultz after passing the likes of Emerson, Hawkinson, Zach Olson while
Mueller finished eighth.
Solem was the runaway winner as the former Midwest Modified racer took the
win. Schultz, Lewis, Emerson and Hawkinson finished in the top five.
Next up were the Midwest Modifieds scheduled for 20 laps. The front row
consisted of 2021 track champion Ryan Savoy on the pole next to Brady Uotinen.
Flag man Ray Stuart showed the green, Savoy and Uotinen along with Andrew
Inman and Kenedy Swan took off but the Caution Flag flew for a tangle in the first
turn involving Paul Ripley and Jack Rivord, Ripley was able to continue but
Rivord was out as was Jason Vandekamp and Tanner Gehl. The restart saw
Uotinen take the lead over Savoy with Swan third, David Simpson fourth and
Brandon Mehrwerth fifth. The order up front stayed the same for several laps with
the exception of Mehrwerth and Inman swapping spots. Caution number two flew
when Brandon Jensen spun in turn four. Racing resumed with sixteen laps to go
and Uotinen still setting the pace. A single lap was completed when there was
contact in the fourth turn leaving quite a mess. There were no reported injuries the
cars of Dane Olson, Shane Howell, Dalton Mains, Mehrwerth, Jensen, Adam
Shinn and Mclean Andrews were involved. Mains, Mehwerth and Shinn were out
the rest continued. The green flag flew and Uotinen led Swan to the green ahead of
Simpson, Savoy and Inman. This order in the top five lasted for several laps as
Uotinen widened his lead over Swan who, in turn drove away from Savoy who
had gotten around Simpson. The final caution flag flew with five laps remaining
when Darrin Lawler stopped against the wall at the end of the front straight.
Uotinen continued his mastery of the restart but Swan encountered difficulty and
lost second to Savoy, then third to Shane Howell finally settling in fourth to the
checkered flag. Zach Benson completed his great drive from 19th to the top five. It
was Uotinen’s first Northern Nationals win as a rookie and third at the speedway.
He also turned the fastest lap with a circuit of 18.319 seconds for an average of
The WISSOTA Street Stocks do not run regularly at Gondik Law Speedway
and are invited to race for the season ending Nationals. Rice Lake Speedway
season champion Travis Loew and Dustin Doughty led the small but lethal pack of
Street Stocks to the green flag. Doughty grabbed the lead over Loew with Jason
Havel third, Jimmy Randall fourth and Shawn Amundson fifth. The first caution of
the 15 lap event happened quickly when Havel spun at the bottom of turn two. The
field lined up nicely but it didn’t last as Ryan Satter and Amundson met. This
restart went better as Doughty and Loew took off chased by Satter and Randall.
Behind them Kolby Kiehl, Havel pulled up to go three wide for third with Randall.
Quickly the third caution flag flew when Cole Richards and Thomas Worth
collided in the fourth turn. Both were out and Keihl also sustained some damage
but was able to continue. From there on things seemed to settle down as Doughty
went on to take the win, Setter was second, Loew third, Amundson fourth and
Havel a steady fifth. Randall slowed and pulled off leaving Keihl and Tom
O’Brien to finish sixth and seventh.
It was to be 15 laps for the WISSOTA Pure Stocks with mike Schnider taking
the early lead over Aaron Bernick at the outset. Tom Treviranus and Cory
Jorgensen along with Jared Akervik that first lap did not finish as James Rahn
spun mid-pack in turn four and everyone missed him! There was still 15 laps to go
when the restart green showed and Schnider again headed off toward what he
hoped to be his second straight Northern Nationals win. Bernick clung to second
but fell to Jorgensen a lap later those three maintained the front spots for several
laps as Akervik began to work his way up to fourth with Nate Rose fifth. Akervik
was relentless as he got past Bernick to third. The second caution flag flew for
Trevor Treviranus who had stopped at the bottom of turn two. The restart came
with four laps remaining. Schnider maintained the point but Akervik slipped into
second. Once again after a lap the caution flag appeared for Chad Carlson and
Akervik at the bottom of turn two. The incident was charged to Bernick who was
sent to the rear and Akervik was restored to second. The green light flashed on
with three laps to go and Akervik all over Schnider as the two flew around the
track. On the next to last lap Akervik tried a risky maneuver, there was contact and
Akervik got by to lead the winning lap for his first Northern Nationals title. The
caution period so close to the end was Schnider’s downfall as it let Akervik get too
DeJay Jarecki had the point for the 15 lap Hornet feature that was day one’s
finale. Jarecki grabbed the lead with Jacob Aarthus in second. Kristy Marken,
Nathan Rose, Jr, and Marcus Ammerman were in a three wide battle for third
followed by Alex Aderman. That battle raged for several laps as marken was able
to hold off them until, with six laps left Tyler Schramm moved from seventh to
third. With five laps to go Jarcki held a commanding lead all the way to the
checkered flag. Aarhus got past Schramm to second while Ammerman did the
same as Jarecki crossed the line with what was his sixth feature win at the
speedway. Unfortunately for him he was disqualified in post race inspection
giving the victory to Jacob Aarhus from Canby, Minesota.