Bennett Takes Home His 4th
Feature Win at Slinger!
By Weyer / Margetta
11, 2002; Slinger, WI - Lowell Bennett took another step
towards his third consecutive track championship when he won the 76 Racing 60-lap late
model feature Sunday night at the Slinger Super Speedway.
Bennett led the final 45 laps of the race but had to survive a green-white-checkered
finish that had him holding off veteran Al Schill to win by about a half car-length.
I didnt need to see Al coming there at the end, but we
have a lot of fun together, Bennett explained after claiming his fourth feature win
of the season. We raced that way a couple of weeks ago when he won and I was second.
Hes a great competitor.
Rookie driver, Chris Petersen used the outside groove to take command of the event at the
start with Bennett taking second place, sliding pole-sitter Florian Wisinski to third.
Schill moved around Wisinski for third a few laps later just before the first yellow flag
waved on lap eight when contact between Fred Winn and Dennis Prunty caused a traffic jam
resulting in Austin Konetski spinning in turn four.
Petersen maintained the lead for the restart but could not keep his car on
the inside of the speedway and opened the door for Bennett to move alongside on lap ten.
Petersen raced hard on the outside and even dirt-tracked through turn two in an effort to
keep up but the task of holding off the defending track champion on the outside proved to
be too much as Bennett took the lead one lap later. Schill also made his way around
Petersen by using the inside lane to take second, leaving Petersen to fend off the
challenges of Eric Fransen.
The second yellow flag slow-down occurred on lap 14 when contact between David Prunty and
Conrad Morgan while racing for fifth, sent Morgan spinning off the backstretch and into
the infield. In the scramble to avoid the situation, Wisinski spun in turn four directly
into the path of Mike Egan who piled into Wisinskis car. Austin Konetski and Larry
Los could not avoid the stalled cars and became collected in the incident. Prunty was
directed to the rear of the field for his involvement.
Although Bennett led when the race resumed, he could not shake Schill, Petersen, or
Fransen as they kept the leader in their sights while weaving their way through lapped
traffic. Bennett led at the halfway mark to claim the $200 Mac Tools Halfway Challenge.
The back end of Schills car kicked loose in turn four on lap 50, forcing Petersen to
back off and lose third place to Fransen as Schill made the save. Conrad and Donavan
Morgan tangled in turn one on lap 58 to produce the final caution flag and set up a two
lap sprint to the finish.
Schill stayed glued to Bennetts rear bumper for the final two laps
and was able to duck to the inside as both drivers raced toward the checkered flag.
Bennett held on to capture the win by about a half car length over Schill while Fransen
finished a close third. Petersen capped off one of his best races of the season with a
fourth place finish and last weeks feature winner, Cindy Peterson was fifth.
In other late model action, Joe Gross won the 30-lap semi-feature over Larry Los and Jamie
Wallace. Scott Schoeni and Dan Mills rounded out the top five. Lance Bjorklund was the
winner of the consi and Al Schill edged Conrad Morgan to win the dash. Austin Konetski,
who is in his first year of competition at Slinger was the fastest qualifier at 11.784
Dan Miller led a pack of six cars across the line to win the Midwest modified 30-lap
Miller started from the pole position and immediately raced into the lead ahead of Andy
Evraets, Ron Schmitt, and Dale Prunty. Prunty began to march forward by lap 17 as he was
challenging Evraets for second, bringing along Dan Jung, Wes Biswell, and Jeff Holtz to
join the fight for the lead. Miller was able to sneak away to a rather large lead as the
rest of the drivers in the top five raced hard for position.
A spin by Kurt Brown brought out the caution flag and erased Millers
advantage on lap 20. Another slow-down for a David McCardle spin on lap 26 set up a four
lap dash toward the finish that began with Prunty moving to the outside to challenge
Miller for the lead while Evraets had his hands full with Biswell and Jung. Prunty bobbled
in turn two on lap 27 and that was enough for Miller to drive to victory. Prunty was
forced to settle for second and Biswell edged Evraets for third. Jung finished fifth just
ahead of Holtz as the top six cars finished close together.
Jung took top honors in the dash and Holtz had the fastest qualifying lap at 12.605
Todd Gehring steered clear of a mid-race incident and charged to the victory in the 20-lap
Slinger stinger feature.
Gehring raced side-by-side with Jimmie Evans for the lead at the start of the event while
Joe DeStefano Sr., Nathan Fick, James Littrell, and Dave Obermeyer lined up two-by-two
directly in back of the lead duo. Neither Gehring nor Evans was able to gain a definite
advantage and the field behind them remained tightly bunched until Littrell, Fick, and
DeStefano found themselves three-wide entering turn one on lap nine. As the trio exited
turn two, Littrell and DeStefano rubbed slightly sending DeStefano up the track and into
Ficks path. The front of Ficks car hooked the right rear of DeStefano and sent
him hard into the backstretch wall to bring out the caution flag. DeStefano and
Ficks cars were too severely damaged to continue and Littrell was shown the black
flag for his involvement in the accident.
Gehring held the lead on the restart over Evans and Obermeyer while Jason Feyereisen and
Paul Wagner immediately moved toward the front from outside the top five. Feyereisen and
Wagner sliced through the field and occupied the second and third positions by lap 12.
Gehring, however, was able to ease out to a sizeable advantage when Wagner fought his way
past Feyereisen for second on lap 15. Gehring scored the convincing win over Wagner and
Feyereisen while Roger Schmid and David Pichler completed the top five.
Fick won the dash and Wagner set the fastest qualifying time at 13.508 seconds.
James Swan became the first winner in the Midwest sportsman class as he handily won the
Swan charged to the lead at the drop of the green flag from the outside of the front row
as he beat Bill Prietzel into the first turn. While Swan began to pull away, Prietzel
faded back to fourth by the end of the second lap as Scott Ascher and Bobby Gutknecht were
able to race by. The top three remained stable through the halfway mark as Nick Schumacher
and Josh Bauer entered the top five, dropping Prietzel back to sixth. Swan was untouchable
out front and took the checkered flag for the win nearly a half lap ahead of Ascher.
Gutknecht finished third and Schumacher was fourth. Prietzel battled his way back to
Bauer scored the win in the dash and Gutknecht was the fastest qualifier at 13.134
Kevin Wisniewski claimed the win in the Port A John Speedway guest car feature while Dale
Ehleiter continued his winning ways in the Spectator Elimination race. Jack Sutherland
raced to his third Figure 8 race victory of the season and Mark and Ken Fogel won their
sixth team cruiser event.
For Complete results
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