WISSOTA Late Model veteran Shawn Kirwin passed Shaun Peterson on lap seven, taking the lead and never looking back on the way to his first win Saturday night at Viking Speedway.
Josh Thoennes picked up where he left off one year ago with a sterling performance in the WISSOTA Modified A-main while Jeff Crouse led flag to flag in the WISSOTA Super Stock finale.
Elizabeth driver Travis Saurer tallied yet another win in the WISSOTA Midwest Modified division while Randy Kollman scored his first ever Viking Speedway win in the WISSOTA Street Stock finale.
Fans, pit crew members, and drivers alike packed the pits for the 2011 Season Opener at the big half-mile, located on the Douglas County Fairgrounds in Alexandria.
Jason Hoffman took the early lead in the Midwest Modified A-main while the field stacked up two by two behind him. Hoffman looked strong early on before heading pitside during a lap four restart.
That would give the lead to William Lund, who looked strong out front despite heavy pressure from Travis Saurer. Saurer moved out front on lap seven while 14th starter Scott Bintz and 12th starter Brian Haben began to make their moves to the front.
A couple cautions hindered action during the middle stages of the event before Bintz would move into second with five laps still up on the board. Bintz rode the bottom groove with Saurer up top. Bintz would pull even with Saurer a few times in the remaining laps but it was not enough to deny Travis his second win in as many nights.
Bintz turned in a tremendous performance, coming home second ahead of Haben, Lund, and Rusty Kollman.
Fargo, North Dakota driver Randy Kollman reigned victorious in the Street Stock finale despite heavy pressure from a myriad of drivers.
Travis Berends ran the alphabet, taking the lead from the 13th and final starting spot on lap six before engine troubles ended his night just one lap later.
The caution-filled event was a good one with Kollman ultimately outlasting Kimball driver Tiffany Maus-Krippner.
Andrew Bangsund turned in a good run coming home third ahead of 10th starter Kurt Deters, and Russ Carlson.
Mark Blom and Maus-Krippner each took heat race wins earlier in the evening for the Street Stocks.
Jeff Crouse powered from his outside row one starting position to take the lead on lap one of the Super Stock A-main. Crouse ran his familiar groove and was scored the leader at the conclusion of the first lap.
Jeff Flaten moved up to do battle with Alan Johnson for the second spot early on, while Jason Vejtruba and Larry Lund battled for fourth. Flaten moved into the second spot on lap seven while Vejtruba continued his onslaught toward the front.
A couple yellows slowed action during the middle stages of the event before Crouse, Flaten and Vejtruba engaged in a battle for the ages for the lead. Vejtruba was able to sneak by Flaten for the second spot with three laps remaining, quickly pulling even with Crouse in the process.
On the final trip around, Crouse and Vejtruba drag raced down the backstretch side by side. Vejtruba drove it in hard on the bottom with Crouse up top. In the end, however, Crouse would hold his topside momentum, taking the win in the process. Vejtruba settled for a hard fought second with Flaten third, Larry Lund fourth, and Matt Miller the final member of the top five.
Josh Thoennes and Jake Wildman shared the front row starting duties for the Modified A-main, which boasted 17 entries. Wildman got the jump early on and was scored the leader at the conclusion of the first lap. Thoennes would hound Wildman until lap four, when he was able to take the lead entering turn three.
The first yellow of the evening waved on lap four when Jason Thoennes came to a stop at the bottom of turn four.
Jason was forced to head pitside while the drivers aligned two by two behind Josh Thoennes out front.
On the restart, it was more than apparent that two drivers were on the move. Eighth starter Terry Engebretson and 16th starter Travis Saurer looked to have the fastest cars on the speedway as they worked their way through the field.
Engebretson shared the second row with Mike Stock when the final caution waved with five laps remaining. On the restart, Engebretson dove to the bottom and pulled even with Thoennes momentarily as the duo raced off of turn two. Thoennes kept the topside momentum while Engebretson regrouped in second. Saurer began to assert himself, moving by Engebretson for the second spot with two laps remaining, tracking down Thoennes in the process.
On the final trip around, Saurer tried everything in his power to get by Thoennes but it was not enough as Josh took his first win of the season behind the wheel of his new MasterSbilt Modified.
Saurer had the fans on their feet several times with his top shelf antics, coming home second with Engebretson third, Storck fourth, and Dennis Bitzan fifth.
Alexandria's own Shaun Peterson would lead early and often but ultimately it was Shawn Kirwin scoring the Late Model win in the final race of the evening. Kirwin moved out front on lap seven and never looked back on his way to a mighty impressive win.
Jeff Wildung steadily moved forward from his row four starting position to finish second ahead of Rick Nelson, Zach Johnson, and Ricky Weiss. The WISSOTA Late Model sported a great field of cars with 16 entries on hand.
VIKING SPEEDWAY RACING
MAY 7, 2011
Feature - Shawn Kirwin, Jeff Wildung, Rick Nelson, Zach Johnson, Ricky Weiss, Mike Balcaen, Jeremy Keller, Rick Schroeder, Joey Ogston, Scott Greer, Scott Lehn, Brad Parson, Shaun Peterson, Jeff Schommer, Seth Brede, Eric Breeschoten.
Heat 1 - Nelson, Schroeder, Kirwin, Wildung, Keller, Lehn, Brede, Breeschoten.
Heat 2 - Weiss, Johnson, Peterson, Balcaen, Greer, Ogston, Parson, Schommer.
Feature - Josh Thoennes, Travis Saurer, Terry Engebretson, Mike Storck, Dennis Bitzan, Cale Arneson, Jake Wildman, Dave Schroeder, Dallas Gulbrandson, Brock Gronwold, Jason Blascyk, Brett Hoium, Kyle Wieberdink, Tyler Sjoman, Jason Thoennes, Gary Reents, Ward Imrie.
Heat 1 - Wildman, Jo. Thoennes, Bitzan, Blascyk, Gronwold, Gulbrandson, Schroeder, Reents, Imrie.
Heat 2 - Ja. Thoennes, Engebretson, Storck, Hoium, Arneson, Sjoman, Wieberdink, Saurer.
Feature - Jeff Crouse, Jason Vejtruba, Jeff Flaten, Larry Lund, Matt Miller, Derrick Lemke, Mike Peterson, Kevin Robertson, Jeff Kluver, Terry Merten, Jon Stepan, Cody Lee, Steve Weber, Alan Johnson, Dominic Baker, Todd Hauer, Cory Tammen.
Heat 1 - Vejtruba, Stepan, Flaten, Peterson, Hauer, Miller, Baker, Weber, Lee. Heat 2- Robertson, Crouse, Alan Johnson, Lund, Tammen, Merten, Kluver, Lemke.
Feature - Travis Saurer, Scott Bintz, Brian Haben, William Lund, Rusty Kollman, Dustin Bitzan, Randy Laage, Nick Bruder, Levi Arneson, Todd Berg, Josh Muzik, Darrin Braaten, Chris Mensen, Shawn Fernkes, Travis Vanderby, Dan Greeley, Ben Godbee, Derek Quinn, Brandon Spanswick, Brett Johnson, Jason Hoffman, Shawn Olson, Brady Gerdes, Zach Hintermeister.
Heat 1 - Gerdes, T. Saurer, Spanswick, Berg, Quinn, Vanderby, Haack, Dropik. Heat 2- Kollman, Greeley, Laage, Bintz, Bitzan, Reents, R. Saurer, Bruder.
Heat 3 - Olson, Lund, Muzik, Arneson, Braaten, Fernkes, Hanson.
Heat 4 - Hoffman, Mensen, Haben, Godbee, Hintermeister, Johnson.
Feature - Randy Kollman, Tiffany Maus-Krippner, Andrew Bangsund, Kurt Deters, Russ Carlson, Brett Miller, Tim Jodsaas, Vernon Stewart, Bob Banish, Mark Blom, Justin Vogel, Travis Berends, Chris Winter
Heat 1 - Blom, Kollman, Banish, Carlson, Jodsaas, Winter, Stewart
Heat 2 - Maus-Krippner, Vogel, Bangsund, Miller, Deters, Berends.