Slinger Super Speedway - Race Report

logosm.gif (6163 bytes)

Bennett takes the win in the Miller Lite 120 presented by Emily's Restaurant
By Dan Margetta

(Slinger, WI); May 4, 2008 -  Lowell Bennett swept by Al Schill to take the lead just past the halfway mark and went on to win the Miller Lite 120 Spring Opener presented by Emily’s Restaurant Sunday afternoon at the Slinger Super Speedway.

“I was just on cruise control there at the end”, Bennett stated after pulling away for the convincing win. “This is a great way to start out the year.”

Photo Highlights

5901a.jpg (13981 bytes)
Lowell Bennett (#2) opened up the 2008 racing season at Slinger Super Speedway with a convincing win in the Miller Lite 120..
5901a.jpg (13981 bytes)
Dennis Prunty (#42) and Pete Weidemeyer (#22) make contact with the wall near the start of the Super Late Model main event.  Both drivers were unhurt.  Fred Winn (#75) spun to avoid contact. .
5901a.jpg (13981 bytes)
Dennis Prunty (#42) topped the Super Late Model smei-feature, but would have his luck go awry after being involved in an accident in the main event.
5901a.jpg (13981 bytes)
Jon Reynolds Jr. (#10) started the 2008 season where he left off in 2007.  In victory lane after the Limited Late Model feature.
5901a.jpg (13981 bytes)
Rob Braun (#98) spun late in the Limited Late Model main event and collected Jerry Eckhardt (#61).
5901a.jpg (13981 bytes)
Defending Midwest Sportsman champion Kenny Joosten (#47) topped the day's feature contest by a comfortable margin.
5901a.jpg (13981 bytes) Steve Schulz (#45) was victorious in the Midwest Modified main event.
5901a.jpg (13981 bytes)
There was more than just racing action on the track, as children participated in a coin scramble making their day at the raceway quite eventful!
5901a.jpg (13981 bytes)
Aaron Cain (#5) came out on top of a late race battle with Al Stippich to take top honors in the Thunderstock feature.
5901a.jpg (13981 bytes)
A last lap pass would take Matt Westphal to victory lane in the Slinger Bees feature race.
5901a.jpg (13981 bytes)
Shane Becker (#20) topped the final event of the day, taking the Figure Eight contest.

Nick Schumacher and Tommy Pecaro led the field to the green flag with Schumacher setting the pace during the opening laps as Pecaro, Schill, Brad Dahmer, and Bennett raced behind him. The action started early as on lap four, Dan Jung looped his machine into the infield exiting turn two and as the field scattered to avoid the incident, cars became stacked up entering turn three. The cars of Mike Meyerhofer and Fred Winn couldn't escape the gridlock and both spun while behind them Dennis Prunty and Pete Wiedmeyer made hard contact with the turn three concrete as Prunty rode the wall to bring out the caution flag.

Schumacher continued to hold off Schill for the top spot as racing resumed while further back, the field again took to side-by-side racing as Eric Fransen, Brad Dahmer, Brad Mueller, Jeremy Lepak, and David Prunty all looked to move up. The close racing resulted in contact within the pack, sending Dahmer’s car sideways and has he fought for control, his front-end slightly clipped Prunty’s machine and send it spinning into the infield to draw another caution flag on lap 14. Prunty was able to continue and both he and Dahmer restarted the race at the rear of the field as Schumacher continued to lead over Schill, Pecaro, Mike Strupp, and Fransen.

Schill used the outside on the restart to get a run on Schumacher and worked his way into the lead on lap 16 while Bennett and Mueller advanced into the top five. Schill was able to ease away from the field while Bennett continued his march forward, taking over second place from Schumacher by lap 45 while Mueller and Fransen closed from fourth and fifth. Bennett pulled to Schill’s bumper and made a brief challenge before the caution flag waved for the scheduled break at the halfway mark with Schill leading Bennett, Mueller, Fransen, and Schumacher.

Schill maintained the lead on the restart but was under heavy pressure from Bennett who was working the outside groove in an effort to take command of the event. Bennett’s work paid off on lap 63 as he swept around Schill on the outside for the lead while Fransen remained within striking distance in third. Behind the top three Mueller found himself in a battle with Jeremy Lepak and David Prunty, who sliced his way through the field to run down the top five. By the 100-lap mark, Schill began to fade in the inside groove as Fransen, Lepak, and Prunty all worked their way around, shuffling the veteran to fifth. Prunty continued his strong run by charging into third place by lap 110, leaving Lepak to race with Mueller over the fourth spot. There was no catching Bennett in the closing laps as he cruised to the win ahead of Fransen and Prunty while Lepak and Mueller rounded out the top five finishers.

“It feels good to have a run like this,” Fransen told the crowd following his second place result. “Yesterday we weren't sure what kind of car we had, but today we had a pretty good one.”

“I really just needed one more caution,” Prunty claimed after his impressive third place run. “I was just waiting for the right time. The early spin messed up the tires a little bit, but I'm happy with this car.”

Dennis Prunty took top honors in the 30-lap late model semi-feature to transfer into the main event along with second place finisher Jamie Wallace. Mike Egan, Scott Schoeni, and Collin Bamke rounded out the top five finishers. Brad Mueller was the fastest qualifier at 11.484 seconds.

Jon Reynolds Jr. began the season right where he left off last year, as he edged Chris Ratajczyk to win the 35-lap limited late model main event.

Brad Keith raced to the early lead at the drop of the green flag ahead of Steve Apel, Reynolds, and Dave McCardle. With Keith maintaining the top spot, Reynolds raced into second place by lap ten and began to track down Keith for the lead. Reynolds pulled alongside Keith numerous times and the two raced side-by-side with Keith able to hold onto the lead in lapped traffic. On lap 18, Reynolds was able to edge ahead just before the caution flag waved for an incident involving Jack Rabey in turn three. On the restart, Reynolds sprinted ahead to a sizeable advantage while Keith found himself in battle for second with Chris Ratajczyk, Steve Apel, and Scott Ascher. Apel was able to grab second place by lap 20, bringing Ratajczyk with him into third place as Keith and Ascher raced for the fourth spot. Ratajczyk was able to work his way by Apel for second place as Reynolds enjoyed a commanding lead.


On lap 29, Rob Braun clipped the backstretch wall and spun entering turn three. When his car slid down the banking, it was solidly collected by the car of Jerry Eckhardt and the caution flag flew again. Reynolds and Ratajczyk lined up for the double-file restart with just six laps to go and Reynolds was able to hold onto the lead before the field was slowed again under yellow on lap 32 following a spin by Trevor Dassow. Reynolds was up to the task over the final three laps and he took the checkered flag ahead of Ratajczyk for the victory. Steve Apel finished third ahead of Scott Ascher and Brad Keith. Earlier in the afternoon, Jimmy Dragich was the fastest qualifier in the limited late model division after turning a lap of 12.376 seconds.

Defending Midwest Sportsman track champion Kenny Joosten dominated the 35-lap Midwest Sportsman feature to score a commanding win over Jeff Holtz and James Swan. Joosten led every lap of the caution-free event and handily took victory in dominating fashion. Holtz chased Joosten throughout the entire distance and finally settled for second place at the finish while Swan improved from his sixth starting spot to finish third. Dave Thomas and Mike Graczkowski completed the top five finishers. Graczkowski also set fast time for the division, touring the speedway in 12.681 seconds.

Steven Schulz passed Steve Huelsbeck on the outside on lap five of the Midwest Modified 25-lap feature and checked out on the field to score the victory. Huelsbeck crossed the finish line in second place while Wes Biswell followed behind in third place. Matt Pate and Ron Schmitt completed the top five finishers as the race ran caution-free. In addition to scoring the feature win, Schulz also was the fastest qualifier in the division with a lap of 12.322 seconds.

Aaron Cain held off a late charge by Al Stippich to win the 20-lap Thunderstock feature.

Joel Steffen and Bernie Leonard swapped the lead in the early going before Cain charged by and into the lead on lap seven. The first caution flag of the event waved a lap later for fluid on the track and on the restart, Stippich quickly moved from the fifth position into second, using the outside line. Jim Bentzler also advanced forward, following Stippich into third leaving Joel Steffen to battle Troy Martingilio over the fourth position. Stippich closed in on Cain, driving to Cain’s rear bumper as the caution flag flew again on lap 16 when Jack Stern’s car momentarily caught fire. Cain held off Stippich’s charges over the final four laps and crossed the finish line for the win with Stippich a close second. Bentzler finished third ahead of Martingilio and Steffen. Stippich also set fast time for the division at 13.735 seconds.

Matt Westphal executed a last lap pass on Matt Klenz to win the 20-lap Slinger Bees feature. Eddie Klug finished third while Tom Berens and Ken Schraufnagel rounded out the top five. Jason Hennes was the fastest qualifier at 16.587 seconds.

Shane Becker closed out the afternoon with a win in the Figure 8 event.