WEBSTER CITY - Race fans at the Hamilton County Speedway probably wondered if that was a race car or a rocket zooming around the track in the Modified feature race Saturday night.
That rocket actually was the No. 2L driven by Adam Larson of Ames, which jumped out to a quick half-track lead during the feature, while the rest of the pack battled it out behind. Larson was across the finish line first - but he won't get credit for winning the race.
The No. 2L Modified was testing out an experimental crate motor and the addition of a spoiler on the back under IMCA supervision. The experimental motor has aluminum heads which should make the purchase cost about one-third less than a conventional race motor. The package may also include a quick change rear end.
DFJ photo by Nancy Kayser
Adam Larson of Ames (front), driving his No. 2L Modified, used the Hamilton County Speedway to test an experimental engine and spoiler setup during a heat race and the feature on Saturday.
Technically the car finished first, but it did not meet required specifications due to its testing status and therefore was not eligible to claim a win.
IMCA officials who were in attendance at the Speedway Saturday night maintain they are striving to keep the cost of putting a car on the track affordable. This new motor may accomplish that mission.
The actual win in the Modified race went to David Brown of Kellogg in the No. 21. He led for the first four laps until the experimental motor No. 2L went to the front. Brown dueled with his son, Kyle in the No. 21K, for the entire race and maintained his lead while Kyle, in his rookie year in a Modified, ran bumper to bumper with his dad at times.
Behind them, J. D. Auringer of Evansdale in the No. 00J and Webster City's Mark Elliott in the No. 12 traded places. Newton's Mike VanGenderen in the No. 57 V stayed in the hunt too. At the finish Kyle Brown was second, Auringer, third, Elliott fourth and VanGenderen fifth.
Jason Vansickel of Webster City garnered his first ever Stock Car win in his No. 37E. He joked after the race that when he went to the lead on the first lap, he drove hard, but careful, to stay there and to avoid any spin-outs which would have pushed him to the back of the pack.
Pressuring Vansickel the entire feature was eventual second-place finisher Ryan Leeman of Roland in the No. R31. Adam Silvey of Iowa Falls in the No. 97 and Jim Mitchell of Webster City in the No. M5 wrangled each other for third and fourth with Silvey eking out the third position.
After crossing the finish line, Vansickel took a happy lap around the track and spun a few NASCAR-style donuts for the grandstand crowd.
The Sport Mod class was a bit too anxious to get going, bringing out six caution flags in the first five laps. By the final restart, last week's winner Joel Rust, Grundy Center in the No. 26J, had worked his way forward from the fourth row and took the lead. From then on he led convincingly and started lapping traffic as he took the checkered flag.
Racer Hulin of Laurel in the No. 505 worked hard behind Rust for the second spot with third going to Brandon Toftee of Webster City in the No. 85T.
No matter where in the back rows the veteran driver Randy Embrey of Granger and his No. 40 Hobby Stock start, he seems to easily maneuver the bright orange and blue car to the front of the pack. He ran door to door with the No. 21 of Myles Michehl of Fort Dodge starting on the third lap.
The two were pestered by the No. 14 driven by Robert See of Blairsburg, the No. 56 of Ty Griffith and the No. 24 of Austin Wolfgram, both of Webster City. In the mad dash to the finish line, Embrey crossed first to claim his fourth win of the season, See took the second slot, with Michehl in third, Griffith fourth and Wolfgram in fifth.
There was no catching Ryan Griffith of Webster City in the No. X Late Model after he took the lead on the lap No. 2 restart and kept it through two more caution resets. Jason Hahne of Webster City in the No. 76 ran in second most of the race with Darrel DeFrance, Marshalltown in the No. 99D, edging close for third.
The top five placers in the Sport Compact class stuck together as they completed their six-lap race, exchanging spots on their way around the track. At the finish, claiming the win for the fourth time this season was Jarid Kuchenreuther, Rockwell City in the No. 83. Second was Adam Strunk, No. 85S of Webster City; third went to Ran Boland, No. 8 of Fort Dodge; fourth went to the No. 8 driven by Jordan Prehn of Garner while Zach Sells, No. J48 of Fort Dodge, was fifth.
There were 75 cars from 39 Iowa towns in the pits.
Next week's racing is sponsored by the Webster City Snowmobile Club. The Williams Little Princesses will present the trophies. Grandstand opens at 5 pm.; hot laps begin at 6 p.m., with racing to follow.