Opening weekend at races
A packed grandstand and an infield full of cars finally welcomed the 2005 racing season in full force at the Red River Valley Speedway Friday night for Friday Extreme Racing.
Ryan Flaten and Derek Bernstein led the 21 car WISSOTA Street Stock field to the green, with Bernstein grabbing the early lead. Nic Klein motored past second place Flaten soon after, and tried his hand at Bernstein in turns three and four, with no luck.
Duffy Froemke tracked down Flaten one lap later, and began to race him for second, but it was Bernstein held on to first for most of the race to take the feature win in convincing fashion.
In the WISSOTA Midwest Modified feature, a yellow was thrown in the first lap for Ryan Restad, who wrecked on the backstretch. Meanwhile, fourth row starter Travis Saurer began a charge to the front very quickly, grabbing second after one lap. As the top two headed into turn three, Saurer caught the leaders, then made his move in turns one and two to take the lead with 10 laps to go. Meanwhile, Tony Johnson, who started a row behind Saurer, grabbed the third spot shortly thereafter.
For the rest of the race, the field tried staying with Saurer, but it was no use as Saurer drove away and eventually took the win in dominating fashion.
Brock Gronwald kept second, while Johnson, Steve Pavlicek, and Cory Wheeler followed.
Jeff Odden took the win in the B-Main held before the features.
Eric Monson and Blake Jegtvig, driving a friends car, paced the WISSOTA Mod Four field to the green, with Jegtvig taking the lead as they headed into turn one. Jegtvig began his assault on the field, driving the low line to perfection, while Mike Greseth picked off cars one by one. Greseth got by older brother Matthew Greseth in one and two with nine laps to go in the 12 lap race, then drove by third place Shayne Laske a lap later. While Jegtvig continued to lead, Mike Greseth caught second place Monson with a few laps left, and eventually got by him for the spot. Jegtvig held on for the win, while Greseth drove across the line in second after starting the race in row four. Monson held on to third, while Laske and Steve Johnson finished fourth and fifth.
John Nord and Todd Heinrich the led the 22 car WISSOTA Super Stock field to the green, with Nord taking the spot as they raced through turns one and two. Right behind them, sophomore driver Alex Engelstad and Jeff Hapala battled for the third spot. Engelstad got by, and set his sights on the front two soon after. Engelstad drove under Heinrich in turn four a lap later, and the two raced side-by-side into the next set of turns. As they drove through turns three and four, Engelstad and Heinrich continued to race beside each other. Engelstad grabbed second into turn one, however, and began to track down Nord. Meanwhile, fourth row starter Todd Carter began to make his presence known, as he grabbed third away from Heinrich in turns three and four with 14 laps left, then drove above Engelstad in turns one and two, then drove above the leader Nord in the next set of corners, driving from fourth to first in one complete lap. With two laps remaining, a caution waved, setting up a two lap shootout between Engelstad and Carter. As they got the green, neither of the front two would give an inch, as they raced the whole lap side-by-side once more. As they came to get the white flag, a caution waved, and ended the race, giving Carter the win over Engelstad in a spirited battle.
A pair of Harwood drivers paced the field in the 20 lap WISSOTA Modified feature, as Chad Ohnstad and Mike Johnson led the 21-car field to the green.
As they entered turn one, Ohnstad powered to the lead, and began using the high line to perfection as he began to pull away from the field. Behind him, Johnson had his hands full of Dev Malmlov, as the two battled each other to complete lap one. Soon after, Blake Jegtvig entered the mix, and took third away from Johnson a lap later. A few laps later, Scott Dollinger drove under Mike Johnson for fourth in turn four with 15 laps to go, only to have Johnson blast by on the outside as they headed down the front stretch. With 14 laps to go, a caution waved, which evaporated Ohnstads sizeable lead. On the green, Ohnstad continued to pull away from the field, as Malmlov and Jegtvig tried to chase him down.
Another caution slowed action once more, but again Ohnstad drove away, running right next to the wall the entire race. Mark Pfaff eventually grabbed the spot for good, but was never able to catch the leaders, as Ohnstad took home the win, followed by Malmlov and Jegtvig.
Shane Spurlock and Greg Nikitenko led the WISSOTA Championship Sprint Car field to the green, with Spurlock jumping out to the early lead. Loren Langerud caught second place Nikitenko shortly after as they raced into turn three, but Nikitenko held the spot, and drove by Spurlock as they raced out of turn four. Langerud grabbed second from Spurlock soon after, and continued to set his sights on Nikitenko. As they raced into turn three, Langerud drove to the outside of Nikitenko and took the lead as they raced out of turn four. Langerud continued to lead the race, and was never really challenged after that, and took home the eventual win.
Racing will continue next Friday night, with all six classes returning to do battle on the big half-mile. Payouts for each class are posted on the tracks website. The gates open at 5:00 p.m. with racing at 7:30 p.m. for the seasons second night at the races. Grandstand tickets are available on race day at the gate or any time at area Stop-N-Go Stores. For more info on upcoming events, contact the Red River Valley Fair office at (701) 282-2200, or visit the racetracks website at www.redrivervalleyspeedway.com.
WISSOTA Sprint Cars:
Feature - Loren Langerud, Greg Nikitenko, Curt Lund, Chuck Swenson, Scott Broty Heat 1 - Chuck Swenson, Scott Butz, Dave Glennon, Sye Anderson, Jay Richert Heat 2 - Curt Lund, Loren Langerud, Scott Broty, Greg Nikitenko, Shane Spurlock
Feature - Chad Ohnstad, Dev Malmlov, Blake Jegtvig, Greg Pfaff, Mark Trautner, Heat 1 - Greg Pfaff, Blake Jegtvig, Bryce Bjerke, Mike Bruns, Steve Middlestead Heat 2 - Phil Christleib, Jason Blue, Mike Johnson, Scott Dollinger, Jamie Schulz Heat 3 - Chad Ohnstad, Dev Malmlov, Greg Johnson, Shane Tendeland
WISSOTA Super Stocks
Feature - Todd Carter, Alex Engelstad, Corky Thomas, Tim Compson, Kevin Robertson.
Heat 1 - Alex Engelstad, Jeff Hapala, Scott Jacobson, William Wadeson, Brian Wateland Heat 2 - Corky Thomas, Todd Heinrich, Tim Varalrud, Terry Dale, Troy Freadrich Heat 3 - Kevin Robertson, Tim Compson, Todd Carter, John Nord, John Miller
WISSOTA Mod Fours
Feature - Blake Jegtvig, Mike Greseth, Eric Monson, Shayne Laske, Steve Johnson Heat 1 - Mike Greseth, Cory VanMil, Matt Greseth, Shayne Laske, Matt Ohnstad Heat 2 - Blake Jegtvig, Jesse Yarmon, Steve Johnson, Bill Leahy, Eric Monson
WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds
Feature - Travis Saurer, Brock Gronwold, Tony Johnson, Rich Pavlicek, Cory Wheeler Heat 1 - Ron Saurer, Karl Tollefson, Tony Johnson, Cullen Brown, Dennis Korf Heat 2 - Travis Saurer, Brock Gronwold, Fergus Falls, Chris Oscarson, Denny Strem, Steve Pavlicek Heat 3 - Cory Wheeler, Rich Pavlicek, Brian Wateland, Ryan Restad, Josh Differding B-Main - Jeff Odden, Marcus Montgomery, Clinton Dunwoody, Dale Kralling, Darin Brandt
WISSOTA Street Stocks
Feature - Derek Bernstien, Nic Klein, Dave Rohweder, Duffy Froemke, Jeremy Schmidt.
Heat 1 - Royce Jawalski, Kevin Veralrud, Jon Young, Jeremy Schmidt, Jason Babcock Heat 2 - Joe Pellman, Ryan Flaten, Nic Klein, Clare Miller, Rick Pommerer Heat 3 - David Rohweder, Josh Doxey, Duffy Froemke, Derek Bernstien, Ross Romdalvik