Arment comes from worst to firstJamestown Speedway hosted “Back to School” night at the track on Saturday, which made a perfect theme for the driving clinic Aberdeen’s Kent Arment instructed during the 20-lap WISSOTA Modified feature. Arment came from 21st position — the final position in the field — to pass polesitter Mitch Johnson, of Hickson, N.D., for the lead in the closing laps to win his first feature race this season in Jamestown.
By: Michael Savaloja, The Jamestown Sun
Jamestown Speedway hosted “Back to School” night at the track on Saturday, which made a perfect theme for the driving clinic Aberdeen’s Kent Arment instructed during the 20-lap WISSOTA Modified feature.
Arment came from 21st position — the final position in the field — to pass polesitter Mitch Johnson, of Hickson, N.D., for the lead in the closing laps to win his first feature race this season in Jamestown.
“We had some yellows fall really good for us, which bunched us all back up, and the track was good,” Arment said. “We had some engine trouble in the heat race and had to work hard before the feature, but it worked out for us.”
The caution flag flew a total of four times in the race, with the final yellow displayed with six laps to go as Arment was running in the third position. Arment previously passed four cars in the span of two laps to claim third after a caution flag with eight laps remaining for Fargo’s Mike Bruns, Jr., who spun in turn three.
Arment was flying around the track down by the guardrail, which is how he overcame second place runner Corey Seckerson, of Jamestown, 16 laps in. Arment used the low line again to get along side of Johnson in turns one and two, and with two laps left on the counter Arment took over the lead for good.
Until that time, Johnson had led every lap and probably would have cruised to victory if not for the caution flags.
“The bottom was working good,” Arment said. “We were testing some setups and that’s where it wanted to be.”
Arment dodged a bullet earlier in his heat race in the form of Jamestown’s John Corell.
Midway through the heat engine trouble forced Arment to slow, and as the driver attempted to get to the pits on the back straight he was sideswiped by Corell.
Arment’s left-rear quarter panel was completely torn off the car, while Corell also suffered sheet metal damage to the right front of his machine.
“It felt like the motor went south, and as I was pulling (into the pits) Johnny caught me. It was a bad deal,” Arment said. “I felt bad to tear his car up, too.”
Johnson finished the feature in second, while Seckerson took fourth, Jamestown’s Jason Grimes finished fourth and Corell rounded out the top five.
A costly mistake hampered the national points leader’s night. On a restart with nine laps left in the feature, Blake Jegtvig, of Hawley, Minn., found himself too high in turns one and two and dropped from third place to finish the race in sixth. Jegtvig won his heat and started the feature in ninth.
Arment said driving from worst to first is something he’s familiar with, but added that accomplishing the task at Jamestown Speedway is no small feat.
“Jamestown certainly has a top-notch pool of drivers here. They’re really second to none,” Arment said. “To go from the back to the front here, you’ve done something.”
WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds
LaMoure’s Taylor Weight held off a fierce charge to the front by Grand Forks’ Dustin Strand, winning his second career Midwest Modified feature race and his first at Jamestown Speedway.
A slight bobble by Weight low in turns one and two on the white flag lap put Strand side-by-side the leader on the high side down the backstretch. Strand won his heat and started the feature eighth where he worked his way underneath traffic to the front.
Weight was able to keep Strand at bay using momentum off the high side of the corners over the final 10 laps. But with Weight’s hiccup on the final lap, Strand appeared poised to slip past the leader for his eighth victory this season in Jamestown in the final set of turns.
Strand got a great run on Weight off the top of turn four as the pair headed to the checkered flag. Unaware of Strand’s final charge, Weight put his hand out the window to wave to the fans and just barely beat Strand to the finish.
“It was by inches,” Weight said. “Finally, it seems like it took forever. It feels awesome.”
Weight is in his second season behind the wheel of a Midwest Mod, and won his first feature event last season at Buffalo River Speedway in Glyndon, Minn. Weight started the feature in the fourth position, after taking second in his heat race.
“With nine laps left I saw (Strand) coming out of turn two,” Weight said. “I just hoped to God I could hold him off. It was a fun race.
“To win here means the most to me,” Weight said. “The competition is about the best it gets, and you hear that from quite a few racers.”
A trio of Jamestown drivers rounded out the top five. Ryan Mikkelson claimed third, while Scott Bintz finished fourth and Josh Eberhardt took home the fifth spot.
WISSOTA Street Stocks
Carrington’s Kelly Hagel was eighth in the WISSOTA Street Stock national point standings last week, and he’s currently leading the season standings at tracks in Mandan, Lisbon and Wishek.
But Jamestown Speedway hasn’t been quite as kind to the Carrington driver in 2009.
“I’ve had four tough weeks down here, between wrecks, spinouts and motor problems,” Hagel said. “It was getting frustrating because I like this track.”
Hagel shook off the bad luck on Saturday, winning his heat and later claiming his second feature win this season in Jamestown after starting the 20-lap event from the pole position.
Belfield’s Ryan Hugelen jumped out to the early lead from the outside pole, but Hagel was able to storm underneath Hugelen heading to the green flag on a restart with 14 laps remaining.
“I knew I had to get (Hugelen) on the restart. The car was just awesome in one and two,” Hagel said. “It was a little bit rough on the other side. I stayed high, so I could turn in the middle, and I had the momentum to stay out front.”
The field, however, couldn’t complete the lap on the restart, as third-place runner Nate Keena, of Baldwin, N.D., got sideways in turn four causing commotion. Hugelen most likely would have been awarded the lead back, but was forced to head to the pits with a flat tire.
Hagel also got bounced around out of turn four on the wild restart, but was able to maintain the lead. Sykeston’s Trent Grager battled Hagel hard for the top spot over the final 10 laps, but couldn’t break Hagel’s stride up high.
Grager settled for second, as Bismarck’s Randy Meyer took third, Carrington’s Rusty Kollman finished fourth and Keena fought back to a fifth-place finish.
The win was Hagel’s 11th feature win of the season. Hagel has six wins this summer at Mandan’s Dacotah Speedway.
The current WISSOTA Street Stock point leader in Jamestown, Luke Nelson, of Valley City, suffered a rough night on the track. Nelson was turned around in turn four with 10 laps left and was unable to finish the race. Nelson was scored 18th out of the 19-car field, and now has just a five point lead over Kollman with the track championships scheduled to take place this weekend.
Barrett Berg, of Lincoln, N.D., finished the feature in 10th place after violently rolling his car on the front stretch during his heat race. Berg was battling Carrington’s Casey Stangeland for the heat race lead on the opening lap, when Berg got into the right rear of Stangeland as the pair headed towards the flag stand out of turn four.
Both Berg and Stangeland made heavy, head-on contact with the grandstand wall. Berg’s car rolled one-and a-half times, landing on its roof near the entrance of turn one. Both drivers were unharmed.
Jamestown’s Josh Ganser took command on the first lap of the 15-lap bomber feature from the outside pole, and held off Aberdeen’s Justin Kollman over five caution flags down the stretch to win his second feature this season at his home track.
Ganser ran the middle groove for most of the night, while Kollman desperately tried to find room past Ganser on the bottom after starting sixth. On the final restart with three laps left, Kollman again tried to find room on the bottom and almost lost the second-place battle to Jamestown’s Joe Jacobson – last week’s feature winner.
Jacobson started way back in ninth position, and used the high side to get near the front. On the final lap, Jacobson took to the high side once again but came up inches short of Kollman to take third. Jamestown’s Jake Emo finished fourth, while Marion’s Jeff Vogel came home in fifth.
“It was just a nice, tacky track here tonight. I held it to the floor and hoped it stuck, and it did,” Ganser said. “I knew it was going to be a tough battle with Kollman. But I was able to hold him off and pulled out the win. It was fun racing with him.”
Jamestown Speedway will be hosting its final points races of the season this Saturday. The 2009 season championships will get underway at 7 p.m.
August 22 results
Feature: 1, Kent Arment, 2, Mitch Johnson, 3, Corey Seckerson, 4, Jason Grimes, 5, John Corell, 6, Blake Jegtvig, 7, John Nord, 8, Jerry Lamb, 9, Chris Prussman, 10, Jamie Trautner, 11, Bob Sagen, 12, Cory Stangeland, 13, Eric Edwards, 14, Dwight Wegner, 15, Shane Bruns, 16, Tyler Elser, 17, Tim Compson, 18. Leo Burkhardsmeir, 19, Randy Tarno, 20, Randal Hanson, 21, Mark Trautner.
Heat 1: 1, Jegtvig, 2, Seckerson, 3, Burkhardsmeir, 4, Prussman, 5, Corell, 6, Elser, 7, Arment.
Heat 2: 1, Johnson, 2, Hanson, 3, Sagen, 4, Grimes, 5, Nord, 6, J. Trautner, 7, Compson.
Heat 3: 1, Lamb, 2, M. Trautner, 3, Tarno, 4, Stangeland, 5, Edwards, 6, Wegner, 7, Bruns.
WISSOTA Street Stocks
Feature: 1, Kelly Hagel, 2, Trent Grager, 3, Randy Meyer, 4, Rusty Kollman, 5, Nate Keena, 6, Royce Jawaski, 7, Geoff Hellman, 8, Randy Kollman, 9, Josh Olheiser, 10, Barrett Berg, 11, Jim Geringer, 12, Ryan Hugelen, 13, Bryce Kuska, 14, Justin Kollman, 15, Paul Kirkeide, 16, Rory Opp, 17, Cammy Ost, 18, Luke Nelson, 19, Jordan Zillmer, 20, Dylan Barnhardt.
Heat 1: 1, Hagel, 2, Hellman, 3, Hugelen, 4, Meyer, 5, Randy Kollman, 6, Kuska, 7, Opp.
Heat 2: 1, Keena, 2, Rusty Kollman, 3, Nelson, 4, J. Kollman, 5, Geringer, 6, Kirkeide, 7, Zillmer.
Heat 3: 1, Jawaski, 2, Grager, 3, Olheiser, 4, Ost, 5, Barnhardt, 6, Berg, 7, Casey Stangeland.
WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds
Feature: 1, Taylor Weight, 2, Dustin Strand, 3, Ryan Mikkelson, 4, Scott Bintz, 5, Josh Eberhardt, 6, Ryan Carr, 7, Ryan Lehr, 8, Zach Naastad, 9, John Corell, 10, Royce Jawaski, 11, Jeremy Forester, 12, Landon Becker, 13, Jerry Theis, 14, Eric Edwards, 15, Steve Ost, 16, Brent Weight, 17, Tim Compson, 18, Wayne Smith, 19, Jordan Jangula, 20, Joie Pfaff.
Heat 1: 1, Bintz, 2, Mikkelson, 3, Edwards, 4, Becker, 5, Theis, 6, Jangula, 7, Chuck Christ, 8, Ryan Schroeder.
Heat 2: 1, Eberhardt, 2, T. Weight, 3, Lehr, 4, Corell, 5, B. Weight, 6, Ost, 7, Jason Halvorson, 8, Greg Deterding.
Heat 3: 1, Strand, 2, Carr, 3, Compson, 4, Forester, 5, Shawn Nostdahl, 6, Jim Morlock, 7, Dave Peterson, 8, Cole Neset.
Heat 4: 1, Jawaski, 2, Pfaff, 3, Naastad, 4, Wayne Smith, 5, Mike Nims, 6, Corey Wegner, 7, Tyler Schrenk, 8, Brent Perleberg.
B-Main 1: 1, Theis, 2, Jangula, 3, Christ, 4, Morlock, 5, Nostdahl, 6, Schroeder.
B-Main 2: 1, B. Weight, 2, Ost, 3, Wegner, 4, Deterding, 5, Schrenk, 6, Nims, 7, Halvorson.
Feature: 1, Josh Ganser, 2, Justin Kollman, 3, Joe Jacobson, 4, Jake Emo, 5, Jeff Vogel, 6, Tyler Michel, 7, Shawn Becker, 8, Chris Gussiaas, 9, Levi Nenow, 10, Leann Christensen, 11, Ryan Widmer, 12, Clay Houchin, 13, Jason Thoms, 14, Devin Christ, 15, Paul Wanzek, 16, Donnie Martin, 17, Jeff Heinrichs, 18, Leslie Zachrision, 19, Lucas Rodin, 19, Bryan Wolf, 20, Brenton Wiesz, 21, Kyle Sand.
Heat 1: 1, Wiesz, 2, Emo, 3, Wolf, 4, Christensen, 5, Brandon Gussiaas, 6, Nenow, 7, Heinrichs, 8, L. Rodin.
Heat 2: 1, Kollman, 2, Jacobson, 3, Michel, 4, Thoms, 5, Sand, 6, Martin, 7, Wanzek, 8, Zachrision.
Heat 3: 1, Becker, 2, Ganser, 3, C. Gussiaas, 4, Widmer, 5, Vogel, 6, Houchin, 7, Christ.
Road Hogs: 1, Travis Edinger and Nick Rowley, 2, Preston Carr and Kyle Braaten, 3, Glenn Christianson and Randy Gordon, 4, Nick Landscoot and Evan Wiest, 5, Matt Gumke and Kelly Gordon.
Sun sports writer Michael Savaloja can be reached at (701) 952-8461 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org