Titles in tow: Bintz, Mikkelson capture season championships at Jamestown SpeedwayThe 2012 racing season was a comeback of sorts for Jamestown’s Ryan Mikkelson and his Flying No. 15 WISSOTA Modified.
By: Michael Savaloja, The Jamestown Sun
The 2012 racing season was a comeback of sorts for Jamestown’s Ryan Mikkelson and his Flying No. 15 WISSOTA Modified.
A year removed from not winning a feature race for the first time in his career, the second-year A-Mod driver re-established himself as a one of the area’s best, en route to three Jamestown Speedway feature victories and his first A-Mod track championship.
By keeping Jamestown’s Jason Grimes behind him, Mikkelson essentially did what he had to do during the season track championships in Jamestown on Saturday night. Mikkelson finished the 20-lap feature in seventh, one spot ahead of Grimes, to lock up the points title by nine points.
“I’m definitely happy about it,” Mikkelson said of winning the title. “I don’t know if we actually deserve this, but we proved we can run with these guys.”
Mikkelson held a slim, eight-point advantage over Grimes heading into the final night of points racing. Both drivers went on to win their respective heat races, which set up the final shootout in the 26-car feature.
The dramatic finish was largely due to Jamestown’s John Corell. The 35-plus year racing veteran had a nine-point lead over Mikkelson in the modified standings at the track two weeks ago, but Corell missed last weekend’s racing and conceded the points lead to Mikkelson.
Corell, the defending modified champion in Jamestown, wound up fifth in points, 47 points off the pace.
“It does feel pretty good, because I get to race against guys that I grew up watching,” Mikkelson said. “Johnny C. Jason Grimes. I’m just grateful to run against them.”
The WISSOTA Modified field on Saturday night was pretty well stacked, with other notables including Minnesota’s Blake Jegtvig and South Dakota’s Mike Stearns. But it was Edgeley native Eric Edwards who piloted to victory.
Edwards started second, alongside Stearns on the front row, and overtook the lead on the second lap and didn’t look back. Edwards car liked the high side of the track, and he pulled fourth-place starter Randy Tarno, of Jamestown, up to second with him.
Edwards held off Tarno over three restarts down the stretch to win his second career A-Mod victory. Edwards has been driving both an A-Mod and B-Mod in Jamestown for the past five years, and he won a B-Mod feature in Jamestown earlier in the season.
“We got the first win with the Midwest Mod early on, and I figured that was probably going to be it,” Edwards said. “We got close in about the middle of the season with the A-Mod, and I thought if I could get one win with the A-Mod we’d be good.
“Then it kind of fell apart toward the end of the season, but I guess we sort of finished strong here at the end.”
Stearns finished third behind Tarno, with Mandan’s Shawn Strand taking fourth and Corell coming home in fifth.
“It’s not easy winning a mod race, or any race. The Midwest Mods are competitive too,” Edwards said. “I guess I’m glad I got it.”
In other action on Saturday night, Marion’s Cory Rodin won his fourth Bomber A-Main of the season to lock up the points title by 12 points over Carrington’s Chris Gussiaas.
Carrington’s Preston Carr won for the second straight week in Jamestown in the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds, as Jamestown’s Scott Bintz was crowned track champ by 13 points over Carrington’s Rusty Kollman.
Horace’s Royce Jawaski motored to victory in the 20-lap WISSOTA Street Stock feature. Lisbon’s Duffy Froemke won the points title by 24 points over Jamestown’s Billie Christ in the Streets. Froemke won two races in Jamestown and finished outside the top five just once all season.
Carrington’s Dylan Wiesz took the season championship in the Hornets by a whopping 56 points over Jamestown’s Alex Kelstrom. Wiesz recorded his fifth feature win of the season in Jamestown on Saturday night.
Jamestown Speedway still has two more weekends of racing left on the schedule, starting with its annual Midwest Modified and Street Stock specials on Sept. 1-2.
The season concludes with the 41st annual Stock Car Stampede on Sept. 21-22.
WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds
Last season’s WISSOTA Midwest Modified points title at Jamestown Speedway came down to a pair a familiar faces, and on Saturday it was those same two faces duking it out for all the marbles.
Jamestown’s Scott Bintz entered the night with a 19-point edge over the defending title holder, Carrington’s Rusty Kollman. All Bintz needed was another solid night to lock things up, and he didn’t disappoint.
Bintz started the 20-lap feature from inside the seventh row and motored up seven positions throughout the race to finish sixth. Kollman started fifth and wound up third, but he was only able to shave six points off Bintz’s points advantage as Bintz won the track title by 13 markers over Kollman.
“It was really cool. I wasn’t sure if we were going to get it or not,” Bintz said. “One of the goals that we had for the year was to win the track championship, so with a little luck we were able to pull it off.”
Bintz finished second to Kollman in the season standings last year. Kollman won five feature races in Jamestown in 2011.
But 2012 was Bintz’s year. He racked up three feature wins in Jamestown, in what proved to be the most competitive class at the track all season.
Prior to Saturday, Bintz was the only multiple B-Mod winner at the track this summer. But Carrington’s Preston Carr broke through with his second win in as many weeks on Saturday night, as he bested the 24-car field after starting from the inside of the second row.
“It was good. No one likes it when someone wins all the time, except the winner,” Bintz said. “It was nice that it was racy enough that it was an any-given-Sunday kind of racing.”
Carr led every circuit on Saturday after passing the polesitter, Pettibone’s Jim Morlock, low out of turn No. 4 on the opening lap. Carr then went to the high side of the track, while Kollman worked his way up to second on the bottom.
“We got the car figured out,” Carr said. “We got her tuned in good. It feels great.”
But Carr nearly lost the lead to Kollman on a restart with 11 to go. Carr left the bottom open for Kollman, who would have completed the pass if it wasn’t for another caution flag that was displayed for a wreck in turn No. 1 before the lap was completed.
“Yeah, (Kollman) got me,” Carr said. “But after the second (caution) I went low to kind of keep him closed down a little bit.”
Carr blocked Kollman’s low line on the second restart, and held the lead from there. Kollman’s bottom groove then went away a bit, as Morlock was able re-pass Kollman and finish second.
Lisbon’s Jarrett Carter and Jamestown’s Josh Eberhardt rounded out the top five, respectively.
Feature: 1, Eric Edwards: 2, Randy Tarno; 3, Mike Stearns; 4, Shawn Strand; 5, John Corell; 6, Blake Jegtvig; 7, Ryan Mikkelson; 8, Jason Grimes; 9, Jerry Lamb; 10, Jamie Trautner; 11, Bryce Borgen; 12, Josh Eberhardt; 13, Brian Swenson; 14, Bob Banish Jr.; 15, Bob Sagen; 16, Corky Thomas; 17, Scott Bintz; 18, Ben Mickelson; 19, John Nord; 20, Randy Klein; 21, Rusty Kollman; 22, Tim Thomas; 23, Delray Dykstra; 24, Dwight Wegner; 25, Allen Kent; 26, Mark Trautner (DNF).
Heat 1: 1, Grimes; 2, Edwards; 3, Strand; 4, J. Trautner; 5, Sagen; 6, Klein; 7, Nord; 8, Dykstra; 9, Bintz.
Heat 2: 1, Mikkelson; 2, Tarno; 3, Lamb; 4, Swenson; 5, Kent; 6, Eberhardt; 7, Banish Jr.; 8, Mickelson; 9, Wegner.
Heat 3: 1, Jegtvig; 2, Corell; 3, Stearns; 4, Borgen; 5, T. Thomas; 6, M. Trautner; 7, Kollman; 8, C. Thomas.
WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds
Feature: 1, Preston Carr; 2, Jim Morlock; 3, Rusty Kollman; 4, Jarrett Carter; 5, Josh Eberhardt; 6, Scott Bintz; 7, Eric Edwards; 8, Darren Pfau; 9, Jason Lamb; 10, Greg Friestad; 11, Scott Jacobson; 12, Tyler Schrenk; 13, Brandon Gussiaas; 14, Jess Brekke; 15, Tyler Peterson; 16, Terry Sahr; 17, Ryan Lehr; 18, Steve Ost; 19, Lucas Rodin; 20, Jason Thoms; 21, Brice Kuska; 22, Nate Jenrich; 23, Dustin Bluhm (DNF); 24, Troy Nelson (DNF).
Consi: 1, Sahr; 2, Ost; 3, Nelson; 4, Thoms; 5, Jeremy Forester; 6, John Clemens; 7, Dave Peterson; 8, Shannon Schlenker; 9, Chuck Christ; 10, Jay Sahr; 11, Andy Kapp (DNF); 12, Brennon Weight (DNF).
Heat 1: 1, Friestad; 2, T. Peterson; 3, Eberhardt; 4, Bintz; 5, Kuska; 6, Weight; 7, Schlenker; 8, J. Sahr.
Heat 2: 1, Morlock; 2, Carter; 3, Bluhm; 4, Jenrich; 5, Edwards; 6, Christ; 7, Kapp; 8, Clemens.
Heat 3: 1, Kollman; 2, Lamb; 3, Pfau; 4, Rodin; 5, Gussiaas; 6, Ost; 7, D. Peterson; 8, Nelson (DNF).
Heat 4: 1, Carr; 2, Jacobson; 3, Lehr; 4, Schrenk; 5, Brekke; 6, T. Sahr; 7, Forester; 8, Thoms (DNF).
Sun sports writer Michael Savaloja can be reached at (701) 952-8461 or by email at email@example.com