Emo racing action heats up in the season’s home stretch

By Darren Derendorf
Special to the Times

With the hot weather the track prep crew did an amazing job keeping the dust down for the fans and created a challenging track for the drivers. Not only was there multiple lanes for racing but the track became dry slick. This is a racing surface that as the clay dries, the track becomes slicker throughout the night of racing, which can be very challenging to handle. However 2 of our championship point leaders found their own challenges as Brody Strachan in the #99 Wissota Modified fought mechanical issues all night and the #59x of James Lambert was collected in an accident early into the Wissota Midwest Modified feature.

In the first Emo Street Stock heat race, the #54x of Sierra Happy started out strong leading from the drop of the green flag. However the #3x of Jesse Thompson wasn’t going to let Happy run too far away. As the laps began to dwindle Thompson saw his opportunity to strike and dove low coming out of turn 4 and was able to win the drag race down the front stretch to take the lead and the eventual race win. In the second heat race a battle of siblings began as the #15R of Raice Westover and the #41 of Jyllian Westover found their way to the front of the field early and were able earn a first and second finsh to start the night.

In the feature it was a girl power front row with Jyllian Westover and Sierra Happy showing the boys how it’s done in the opening laps. With the girls racing hard for first, the rest of the field was fighting hard for every position on track. Despite starting towards the rear of the field, the #15R of Raice Westover quickly found his way to the front with the #3x of Jesse Thompson hot on his heels. By the midway point Raice had snuck past his sister and Happy to earn the lead. After a hard fought battle for 4th place with the #24T of Lyly Thompson, Jesse Thompson worked his way up to 2nd place and attempted to chase down the leader, but Raice had built a large enough lead that Jesse wasn’t quite able to catch him.

Top 3 – 1. #15R Raice Westover 2. #3x Jesse Thompson 3. #54x Sierra Happy

The Wissota Midwest Modifieds started out the first of their 3 heat races with hard fought battles throughout the field. The #14C of Cody Ossachuk and the #99 of Glen Strachan spent the race battling for first. However the glass of the field was the #17 of Chris Leek who quickly worked his way through the field to earn a 3rd place finish. The second heat saw all 6 cars using every inch of real estate the race track had as they battled hard for position. The #70JR of David Simpson and #16G of Garrett Paull quickly found their way to the front and hold the field off until the finish. In the third heat the #26 of Paul Hari was able to race from the back of the pack to the front within a few laps bringing the #32C of Curtis Stieh with him. As the laps began to dwindle the #4B of Brandon Rehill to make his car run the top lane to sneak past Stieh for a second place finish.

There is a saying in racing that cautions breed cautions and in the feature race the 19 car field proved it to be true. The first caution came out before the field had completed the first lap as a couple of cars jumped the start of the race. With the field quickly reset the green flag came back out to a clean restart but a log jam of cars battling for 5th place. With the log jam behind him Ossachuk saw his line past the leader Paul Hari, however the second caution feel quickly as several cars spun coming out of the 2nd turn, unfortunately this spelled the end of the night for the #59x of James Lambert and the #20G of Glenn Godin. As the field took the green flag again the leaders began to fight for position as Leek found his way to the lead temporarily. Over the next 5 laps the whole field was fighting for every position as the drivers battled hard at the front as well as a great 4 car battle of the back of the field , however the 3rd caution for a spin by the #06 of Mike Wilson, slowed the field one more time. Green flag action didn’t last long as the 4th caution feel quickly with a large pile up out of the second turn involving nearly a third of the field and seeing 4 more drivers retire from the race. By the time the carnage was cleaned up and the drivers were back in line there was only a few laps left. Simpson was able to hold the field off for the victory however Ossachuk and Rehill were able to make the high line work again and cruise by Leek to claim the 2nd and 3rd positions respectively.

Top 3- 1. #70JR David Simpson 2. #14C Cody Ossachuk 3. #4B Brandon Rehill

In the first heat of Wissota Modifieds started their night the #4JR of Cameron Brown was off to an early lead, leaving the other 5 competitors jockeying for position. The #21 of Matt DePiero was the first to break free and attempted to catch Brown but ran out of laps. Trouble almost found the field as the #44 of Tyler Brown spun, but he was able to get the car moving quickly and prevented the caution from coming out. In the second heat race the #85D of Jeff Davis and #14 of Blake Ferris found their way to the front of the field quickly. However a few laps into the race Ferris pulled into the infield and did not finish the heat race which gave Davis a clear run to victory in the heat race.

In the feature race the Cameron Brown was able to get a great start and find his way by the leader, the #12P of Brandon Peleptez early. The #88 of Tanner Williamson was able to follow Brown and find his way to an early 2nd place. There was hard racing throughout the field however as towards the back of the pack the DePiero and the #15R of Raice Westover put on an amazing display of hard racing from flag to flag as they continued to trade positions all race long. The first caution came out late in the race as a track marking tire had been knocked into the middle of the racing groove. With the tire back in place the racing action resumed with a hectic restart that led to another caution quickly, for a spin by Williamson off the nose of Brown. The final restart of the night was a Green-White-Checkered which saw the #14 of Ferris sneak past Williamson for his first feature win of the season.

Top 3 – 1. #14 Blake Ferris 2. #85D Jeff Davis 3. #88 Tanner Williamson

Thank you to all the fans that joined us on Saturday night as well as all the hard working volunteers and this week’s sponsor Sunset Country Ford for helping out to put on an amazing show Saturday night. The drivers will be back this Friday and Saturday for the Rea Memorial with Hot Laps at 6pm and racing at 6:30pm. Advance tickets can be purchased between 2-4 pm at the grandstand entrance, with the grandstands opening at 4pm. Please follow all COVID-19 guidelines, in order to speed up entry and make sure no one misses the racing action, please bring a copy of the names and a phone number of everyone in your party for contact tracing. Hope to see you this week at the races!