in Shakopee kicked off its start to the 2012 NASCAR Whelen All-American Series season last Sunday.
The NASCAR action continues with their Mother's Day Special Sunday May 13, featuring more of the exciting NASCAR Whelen All-American Series starting at 6 p.m.
Below is a recap from last Sunday:
The Hobby Stock feature was a high speed highlight reel of what NASCAR racing is all about. At the green flag, with Chaska driver Jeremy Wolff on the pole alongside Robby Carter of Burnsville, racers battled side by side in a close pack of drivers. The field had to regroup after a caution with 23 laps to go, after the car driven by Mark Hawes of Shakopee suddenly shot off the end of turn three at full speed, rocketing into the loose sand off turn four and stopping just short of the catch fence. After the restart, Wolff was able to take the lead with 21 laps remaining. Three laps later, Farmington's Dusty Mann broke free from the group into second place, just as Minnesota racing legend Dick Partington of Farmington slid his car up on its side off the back straight wall and bringing out the second caution of the event.
When the racers regrouped for the restart, Jeremy and Dusty battled for the remainder of the race. While the chase was on for the lead, "Hacksaw" Bill Woodworth of Chanhassen was in a battle of his own trying to hold onto third place over Brent Kane of Lonsdale. At the checkered flag it was Dusty Mann crossing the line just ahead of Wolff, followed closely by Kane in third.
The 2012 season brings one of the largest Mini Stock car counts ever to Raceway Park, and the feature brought 27 cars to the starting line. Chaska's Tom Sibila took his Dodge to the lead at the green, leaving Bloomington's Tyler Christensen and rookie driver Mike Wachs Jr. of Shakopee in a side-by-side battle for second. With 15 laps remaining, Sibila was already lapping cars. However, the caution flew, erasing Sibila's lengthy pace when rookie Justin Winstad of Lonsdale got caught up with Trevor Tompson in turn two. After the restart, Tacheny stayed with the Chaska driver, leaving Wachs to battle for third with a charging Jack Purcell of Bloomington. Another caution with eight laps to go once again regrouped the pack when Matt Doughty of Dassel went spinning on the front straight after making contact with Bloomington's Ted Doughty. Despite the cautions, 25 cars were still on track for the restart, where once again the Sibila machine took the point and with the checkers in sight, Sibila was able to cross just ahead of the Bloomington racer for the win, when suddenly major contact behind the two drivers had multiple cars spinning and sliding across the finish line, leaving Lester Prairie driver Justin Schelitzche able to push through and finish in third.
The Bomber division brought a personal moment to the race, as Eric Prindle of Ramsey was able to capture his very first feature win after 17 years in motorsports competition at Raceway Park. Prindle was on the pole with Shakopee driver Darren Wood, but after a delayed start when Chanhassen's Jeff Borns spun in the first turn of the race, the complete restart gave opportunity to Kenny Shug of Eden Prairie who quickly rolled into second place. A second caution with 14 laps remaining had Prindle next to Belle Plaine driver Andrew Bisek at the restart when Bisek took advantage at lane choice, going high when both Shug and Minnetonka driver Ryan Varner chose to stay down in the lower racing groove. With 11 laps remaining, Justin Kotchever of Shakopee was on the move, passing Shug for 3rd, and blasting past Bisek to take 2nd two laps later. With 3 laps remaining, Kotchever was just two car lengths behind the leader, but Prindle was able to hang on for the win, leaving the Shakopee racer a close second at the stripe, with Bisek finishing in third place.
The NASCAR Super Late Model feature placed the 2011 Track Champion Chad Walen of Prior Lake, who got a heat win earlier on in the evening, next to Bloomington driver Tom Quade. From the start Walen built up a strong lead, with Wisconsin driver Troy Tuma passing Quade for 2nd with 20 laps to go. With 15 laps remaining, Bryan Roach "The Big Dog" from Goodhue was on the move, clearing Farmington racer Ryan Kamish, Quade and then Tuma who entered turn four too fast one lap later, spinning and bringing out a caution. That set up a battle between Walen and Roach at the restart, until the Prior Lake racer was able to once again pull away a couple of laps later. With 8 laps to go Walen was putting on the distance, and starting to close in on the back of the pack when laps ran out. At the line it was Walen with the win, Roach in second, and Bloomington's Quade crossing third.
The American Short-Tracker's got off to a quick start in their feature run, with rookie driver Dave Reed of Plymouth taking the lead, followed closely by veteran short-tracker Charlie Pehrson of Prior Lake and Rogers driver Keith Paulsrud battling for second. With 8 laps to go, Todd Kamish of Farmington was closing in from 4th place when something broke, spilling fluid onto the track sending him and other drivers spinning in turn two bringing out the caution. Reed found himself in a 3-way battle for the top spot with Pehrson and Lester Prairie's Justin Schelitzche after the restart, when Rosemount driver Paul Roby spun exiting turn 4 resulting in another caution with 3 laps remaining. The chase resumed at the restart with Reed and Pehrson side by side to the checkers, with the Plymouth driver crossing just ahead of Pehrson for the win, followed by Schelitzche several lengths behind for a third place finish.
The first of two Figure-8 features began with Shakopee's Matt Dickey taking an early lead, but challenged closely by Danny Johnson of Lakeville for much of the race. With 6 laps remaining and the traffic heating up in the crossroads, multi-time Figure-8 champion Ricky Martin was on the move from 4th place, passing Matt's brother Mike Dickey on the outside for 3rd one lap later, and then closing in on Johnson with 3 laps remaining. Minneapolis driver Joel Johnston had several near misses in the "X" from back in the pack when the leaders crossed in the closing laps, which allowed Matt to get a few car lengths ahead of the battle for second between Johnson and Martin. At the checkered flag it was Matt Dickey first to the finish, with Johnson just ahead of Martin who finished third.
The second Figure-8 run placed Shakopee's John Lebens next to fan favorite Dennis "The Menace" Barta at the start, but when the drivers entered the highway turn Lebens went low for the lead as Barta ran out of room having to go higher up through the curve. At that point there was no looking back for Lebens who thundered ahead through the "crossroads of doom" building a significant lead with 9 laps to go. Positions changed quickly behind the leader as Rick Martin of Lakeville moved into third around Mankato's Todd Tacheny and Joel Johnston of Minneapolis two laps later. Barta was able to close the gap slightly on Lebens when the Shakopee racer had to let up on the gas when heavy traffic crossed ahead in the "X" on the final lap, but it wasn't enough for "The Menace" who had to settle for a second place finish. Rick Martin crossed the stripe for third at the checkers.
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