Schempp back on stage: Hagel takes checkered in crowded B-Mod field
There wasn’t a happier man at Jamestown Speedway on Saturday night than Jamestown’s Justin Schempp.
Schempp found the front with two laps left in the 15-lap Bomber feature, and coasted to the checkered flag, as the race eventually ended under caution, to win his first feature race at the track since Sept. 1, 2012.
“I don’t know if you could tell, but I was exhausted on (the winner’s) stage. It was a tough race,” Schempp said. “The whole field was tough, but it’s awesome. I’m just so freaking excited right now.”
Adrian’s Ryan Ost led the first 13 laps from the second starting position. Schempp started in sixth but had moved up to second in the first four laps.
Ost has been heating up during his sophomore season. The 15-year-old won his second heat race at the track on Saturday, and the feature win was nearly in his grasp.
But Ost developed a push in the corners, which brought Schempp and Marion’s Cory Rodin into the picture.
“I figured either Rodin was going to get me, or else Ryan (was going to win). He was out there a little ways and I didn’t think I was going to get there,” Schempp said. “If (Ost) wouldn’t have had that push coming out of (turns) two and three, I wouldn’t have caught him.”
Rodin, the defending track champion and two-time feature winner here this season, came from the seventh starting position to challenge Ost and Schempp for the lead late. Schempp pulled alongside Ost on the bottom with three laps left, while Rodin was charging on the high side.
Ost, however, pushed over the top on the exit of corner No. 2 with two to go, which handed the lead over to Schempp. Rodin didn’t have much time to challenge any further, as the yellow flag waved for a spin in corner No. 4 on the white-flag lap and the race was over.
“I’ve got a top five car. But I think tonight it was just lucky that that checkered-yellow came out,” Schempp said. “If it would have stayed green I don’t think I’d have been able to hold off Rodin. He’d have ate me alive I think.”
Rodin was forced to settle for second, while Jamestown’s Kyle Anderson came from eighth to finish third and Ost rebounded to finish fourth.
“The track was good. There’s some nice tack out there,” Schempp said. “The car handled like it was on rails thanks to Dave Peterson.
“I talked to him (Thursday) and worked about an hour-and-a-half to two hours on my car shifting weights around, trying to get the weight distribution a little different. It handled great.”
Anderson also has two feature wins here this season and is making a charge for the track title. He’s currently five points better than Rodin in the track standings, while Schempp is 29 points off the pace in third.
Anderson posted the quickest lap in the feature at 17.518 seconds. Rodin turned the fastest circuit of the night, posting a lap of 17.158 seconds en route to winning the first of two heat races.
“Rodin and Kyle, it’s like the greatest thing to beat those two,” Schempp said. “Those guys have just been dominating the last couple of years.”
WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds
Carrington’s Kelly Hagel flew to his third B-Mod feature victory at the track this season.
Hagel won the third of four heat races and led every lap of the 20-lap feature from the pole position. He held off Jamestown’s Greg Friestad, who mounted a last-ditch dive to the bottom in turns three and four on the final lap.
But Friestad finished second to Hagel, who held the momentum up on top the entire race. The night went much better for Friestad than last Sunday at Sheyenne River Speedway in Lisbon.
Friestad, winner of two features here this year, rolled his No. 12F “Phyllis” down the backstretch and worked all week to get his hot rod back together.
Lisbon’s Jarrett Carter took third after staring 11th, and last week’s winner, Edgeley’s Eric Edwards, finished fourth from the sixth position. Carter is the point leader at the track, holding a 12-point cushion over Oriska’s Darren Pfau.
Hagel, who qualified to compete in the WISSOTA Midwest Modified Race of Champions in Huron on Sept. 12 with the win, is 20 points off the pace in third. Hagel qualified for the Race of Champions in his No. 271 WISSOTA Street Stock here back in 2011.
The car count rang in at 78 on Saturday, with the B-Mods yet again drawing the most cars and drivers with 32.
The lower car count made for a quick night. The heat races were completed by 8 p.m., and the entire show was wrapped up by 9:30.
WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds
Feature: 1, Kelly Hagel; 2, Greg Friestad; 3, Jarrett Carter; 4, Eric Edwards; 5, Lyn Lamb; 6, Shannon Schlenker; 7, Darren Pfau; 8, Ryan Romans; 9, John Corell; 10, Spencer Johnson; 11, Randy Kollman; 12, Brice Kuska; 13, Andrew Michel; 14, Trent Grager; 15, Ryan Lehr; 16, Nate Reinke; 17, Preston Carr; 18, Ryan Fike; 19, Jim Morlock; 20, Jeff Carpenter; 21, Scott Bintz; 22, Joey Rowell (DNF); 23, Travis Traut (DNF); 24, Lucas Rodin (DNF).
Consi 1: 1, Grager; 2, Lehr; 3, Kuska; 4, Morlock; 5, Steve Ost; 6, Jay Sahr; 7, Delray Dykstra (DNF); 8, Troy Hartman (DNF).
Consi 2: 1, Kollman; 2, Carpenter; 3, Reinke; 4, Rodin; 5, Jason Thoms; 6, Terry Sahr; 7, Tyler Schrenk; 8, Dave Peterson.
Heat 1: 1, Corell; 2, Schlenker; 3, Fike; 4, Bintz; 5, Lehr; 6, Morlock; 7, Kuska; 8, J. Sahr.
Heat 2: 1, Carr; 2, Rowell; 3, Lamb; 4, Traut; 5, Kollman; 6, Reinke; 7, Schrenk; 8, Peterson.
Heat 3: 1, Hagel; 2, Edwards; 3, Carter; 4, Pfau; 5, Grager; 6, Ost; 7, Dykstra; 8, Hartman.
Heat 4: 1, Romans; 2, Friestad; 3, Johnson; 4, Michel; 5, Carpenter; 6, Rodin; 7, T. Sahr; 8, Thoms.
Feature: 1, Justin Schempp; 2, Cory Rodin; 3, Kyle Anderson; 4, Ryan Ost; 5, Devin Christ; 6, Bill Bachmeier; 7, Josh Anderson; 8, Leann Christensen; 9, Brad Rodin; 10, Matthew Kropp; 11, Byron Whetsel; 12, Cody Ketterling; 13, Lane Stoppleworth; 14, Curt Michaelsohn; 15, Bo Gregor; 16, Jon Perkins (DNF); 17, Billy Carow (DNF).
Heat 1: 1, C. Rodin; 2, Perkins; 3, K. Anderson; 4, Whetsel; 5, Kropp; 6, Christensen; 7, J. Anderson; 8, Ketterling; 9, B. Rodin.
Heat 2: 1, Ost; 2, Michaelsohn; 3, Schempp; 4, Christ; 5, Gregor; 6, Carow; 7, Bachmeier; 8, Stoppleworth.
Sun sports writer Michael Savaloja can be reached at 701-952-8461 or by email at email@example.com