MERIDIAN, Idaho—A raucous crowd packed the Meridian Speedway grandstands as the quarter-mile asphalt oval hosted Boise State Alumni and TEAM Mazda Free Car night. The Pro Truck Series, PitStopUSA.com NASCAR Modifieds, Rebel Modifieds of Idaho, Pepsi Crate Cars and Idaho Sprintcar and Roadster League Super Sixes, Project Filter Pro-4s, TEAM Mazda Mini Stocks, and High School Tuners fill a non-stop program with thrills in pursuit of the Champion Onion hardware.
First to the race track were the PitStopUSA.com NASCAR Modifieds for their first of two 25 lap tussles. Wyatt King made the outside line the place to be early and piloted his Major Tire and Hitch, Stock Construction modified to the lap one lead. King enjoyed three laps at the point before a host of strong competitors tracked him down. Colton Nelson was first to make a move, and on lap five the Meridian, Idaho racer took his Integrity Pools of Idaho, YMC Heating and Air Conditioning machine to the lead with teammate Bryan Warf in tow.
Eager to open up his championship lead even further Warf worked Nelson’s back bumper. As the laps wound down Warf committed to the inside, but Nelson held fast on the outside and took the night’s first main event trophy.
James Strickwerda and Jett Nelson led the High School Tuner field to their fifteen lap feature. Strickwerda got to the gas pedal first to take the lap one lead, but on the move early was Oasis, Idaho’s DJ Sirani. From his back of the pack starting spot Sirani knifed his way forward, and on lap three slung his Husky Auto Electric racer low to claim the top spot.
Behind the lead duo Riley Rogers found the handle on his H&H Accounting machine and surged forward. At the race’s halfway point the new group qualifying record holder blew past Strickwerda for the second spot and set his sights on Sirani. With just two laps left on Pepsi-Cola scoreboard Rogers took command and sped across the Caleb’s Chop Shop Victory Stripe first.
The Team Mazda Mini Stocks brought eleven competitors to their thirty lap main event. Boise, Idaho’s Nate Little charged around the outside of Andrew Harbeston’s Complete Sprinkler Service, Meridian Fence machine to lead the field through turns one and two, but second row starter Luke Wolverton threw caution to the wind and sped around Little to lead lap one at the stripe. But Wolverton was in fast company as championship contenders Fred Vigil and Jayson Wardle took up residence on his Julie Hart with Premier Mortgage, Ryan’s Repair and Diagnostics machine’s rear bumper.
As Wardle and Vigil looked for a way to the lead, contact between Terrell Daffron and quick-qualifier Ian Michael brought out a lap ten caution flag in turn one. Under caution Michael slammed into Daffron in front of the Big Smoke Tobacco Connection North End Animals to display his displeasure. Daffron responded, and after a brake check of his own shifted to reverse and backed hard into Michael’s SSLP Racing, HYLA North America racer. For their actions Daffron was disqualified and Michael received a position penalty.
Racing resumed with Wardle and Wolverton on the front row. Wardle was quick out of the blocks and piloted his Catapult 3 racer to the top spot. Vigil followed Wardle, and as soon as the pair hit open track the Nampa, Idaho driver closed on Wardle. Wardle held Vigil at bay through the race’s closing stages and looked to cruise to victory before a mechanical issue sent Michael hard in the turn one wall. The ensuing caution brought Vigil abreast with Wardle for the green-white-checkered restart, but Wardle was too strong and he claimed the Champion Onion trophy.
But Wardle’s duties weren’t done as he was tapped to draw the winning ticket for TEAM Mazda Subaru’s free car giveaway. As a result one lucky Meridian Speedway fan cruised home in her new 2010 Ford Fusion.
The Project Filter Pro-4s continued main event action with a thirty lap dash. On the break Scott Shoecraft took his Creek Enterprises, B&W Wrecker racer to the lead while the rest of the eleven car field ran door-to-door in the early going. First to break out was Ben Harris, who worked his Kim’s Kars, Vitality Massage machine around the outside to the lead. This shook the pack loose, and soon Eagle, Idaho’s Alex Duda arrived at Harris’ rear bumper for the lead.
At the race’s halfway point Duda held first in his Boise Boys Transportation, TS Fuel and Oil entry, but faced heavy pressure from championship rivals Brendon Fries and Kenny Chandler. Fries was first around Duda with Chandler hot on his heels. Chandler wheeled his Project Filter, Fairly Reliable Bob’s machine hard, but didn’t quite have enough to catch Fries who took the Boise State University Alumni Night win.
The Rebel Modifieds of Idaho went solo for their 25 lap main event. Donovan Parker used his front row starting spot to take his Pegasus Towing, Curtis Clean Sweep machine to the early lead, but faced heavy pressure from Randy Keckley through the early going.
The early mover was Chris Fenton, who tiptoed his way into the top three on lap ten, then waited for the side-by-side lead battle to settle. With twelve circuits to go Fenton made his move and piloted his Pepsi-Cola, Cristiani Motorsports modified around Keckley for the lead. This proved to be the winning pass as Fenton crossed the Caleb’s Chop Shop Victory Stripe first.
The PitStopUSA.com NASCAR Modifieds rumbled back to life for their second 25 lap main event of Boise State Alumni and TEAM Mazda Free Car Night. Pole sitter Josh Jackson blasted past Jonathan Hull to put his Jackson Built Racing, Sticker Shack racer up front on lap one. But action was intense early, and on lap six contact sent third place Hull around in front of the field. Miraculously the pack picked their way around Hull’s Diversified Carpet Cleaning, All American Towing machine without significant contact and continued.
Two laps later more trouble broke out at the head of the field as top five runners Casey Tillman and Colton Nelson tangled coming out of turn two. Both modifieds spun up the track and caromed off the outside wall before Joe Thuss arrived on the scene and pounded the two stricken machines. The contact forced Tillman and Thuss to retire, though quick work by Nelson’s Integrity Pools of Idaho, Mulder’s Auto and Machine team got his racer patched back together before the race restarted.
With the back stretch cleared Larry Hull stormed around Jackson for the lead. Hull pulled to a comfortable advantage through the race’s middle stages, but soon had to contend with Bryan Warf, who broke free of the field and charged into the lead battle. With eight laps left Warf pitched his Integrity Pools of Idaho, Dave’s Quick Lube modified into turns one and two and came out with the lead. This proved to be the winning pass as Warf claimed the night’s second PitStopUSA.com NASCAR Modified feature.
The Pro Truck Series had 75 laps to find a Boise State Alumni and TEAM Mazda Free Car Night winner. The green flag waved and Samuel Harris dispatched Drew Reitsma to take the early lead. Behind Harris the field traded paint for position, and after twenty hard-fought laps John Wong and John Newhouse worked their way into the top two spots with Jonathon Gomez in third. Newhouse was the first John on the move and took his The Car Store.com, Praxair machine to the lead with fifty laps left.
Gomez was next around Wong, and soon his Century Motorsports and Marine truck filled Newhouse’s mirror. Newhouse, brake rotors glowing, fought hard to stay up front as the leaders wound their way through lapped traffic, but after twenty white-knuckle circuits Gomez snuck inside Newhouse for the lead. But Newhouse wouldn’t give up, and the Twin Falls, Idaho racer dogged Gomez for the top spot. The strain on Newhouse’s machine would prove too much, and with fourteen laps left he spun in turn one to bring out a caution flag.
This brought Jason Quale and his Quale Electronics, Heeling Construction truck into the lead battle. When the green flag waved Gomez and Quale dove into turn one and body slammed one another for the lead. When neither racer completed the pass, the process was repeated, and for three laps the lead duo leaned on each other for the lead. Finally it was Gomez who threw his truck harder into turn one to claim the lead and the Boise State Alumni and TEAM Mazda Free Car Night victory.
Saturday night’s action wrapped up with a thirty lap Pepsi Crate Car and ISRL Super Six grudge match. On the break Frank Keller piloted his Bender Electric, Paramount Pipe and Supply racer to the front while the field jockeyed for position. As sprinters darted high and low in search of space contact in the front of the pack caused a chain reaction that pitched second place points runner Nate Little over the top of Colton Nelson. When the smoke cleared Little climbed from his battered Biz Print, Fishers Technology to survey the damage before he was towed to the pit area for the evening.
After the early scramble ISRL Super Six driver Drew Crenshaw found himself out front with Kate Jackson and championship leader Rob Grice on his tail tank. Jackson fought off Grice’s advances through the race’s middle stages, which allowed Crenshaw to build a healthy lead. But with a dozen laps left Grice motored to second and set his sights on Crenshaw. Grice got close, but ran out of laps to catch Crenshaw, who scored the first win for an ISRL Super Six this year.
Meridian Speedway gets back to its roots this Sunday, September 2, as the Idaho Speedway and Outlaw Karts contest Al Russel’s The Dirty Cup. Don’t miss your chance to catch the fasted racers on dirt lap the twelfth-mile dirt oval in pursuit of The Dirt Track at Meridian Speedway’s most prestigious event. Stay tuned to www.meridianspeedway.com for more information, and join our text club by sending ‘meridianspeed’ to 84483 to receive exclusive updates. We’ll see you this Sunday, September 2, under the big yellow water tower for Al Russel’s The Dirty Cup at The Dirt Track at Meridian Speedway.
Saturday’s Unofficial Results
Boise State University Alumni Night
TEAM Mazda Subaru Free Car Night
Quick Time – John Newhouse, 14.571 seconds
A Heat Winner – #13 Sam Harris
B Heat Winner – #22 Jonathon Gomez
Main Event 1. #22 Jonathan Gomez Twin Falls, ID
2. #26 John Newhouse Twin Falls, ID
3. #12 Jason Quale Twin Falls, ID
4. #3 John Wong Eagle, ID
5. #73 Drew Reitsma Jerome, ID
PitStopUSA.Com NASCAR Modifieds
PitStopUSA.Com NASCAR Modifieds Quick Time – Josh Jackson, 13.934 seconds
A Heat Winner – #07 Colton Nelson
B Heat Winner – #80 Wyatt King
Main Event #1
1. #07 Colton Nelson Meridian, ID
2. #70 Bryan Warf Meridian, ID
3. #92 Casey Tillman Kuna, ID
4. #80 Wyatt King Kuna, ID
5. #51 Larry Hull Boise, ID
Main Event #2
1. #70 Bryan Warf Meridian, ID
2. #00 Josh Jackson Nampa, ID
3. #51 Larry Hull Boise, ID
4. #80 Wyatt King Kuna, ID
5. #82 Tommy Harrod Nampa, ID
Quick Time – Christ Fenton, 13.404seconds**
A Heat Winner – #23 Colton Nelson
Main Event 1. #23 Chris Fenton Meridian, ID
2. #66 Dave Wurtz Jr Nampa, ID
3. #08 Donovan Parker Boise ID
4. #68 Mike Davis Caldwell, ID
5. #8 Jerry Green Kuna, ID
PEPSI Crate Cars/ISRL Super Sixes
Quick Time – Tony Ackerland, 13.396 seconds
A Heat Winner – #0 Drew Crenshaw
B Heat Winner – #25 Kate Jackson
Main Event 1. #0 Drew Crenshaw Nampa, ID
2. #61 Rob Grice Boise, ID
3. #5 Ryan Newman Caldwell, ID
4. #95 Tony Ackerland Star, ID
5. #40 Pat Young Kuna, ID
Project Filter Pro-4’s
Quick Time – Kenny Chandler, 13.505 seconds*
A Heat Winner – #77 Ryan Bailey
B Heat Winner – #62 Sean Young
Main Event 1. #34 Brendon Fries Boise, ID
2. #33 Kenny Chandler Kuna, ID
3. #77 Ryan Bailey Nampa, ID
4. #12 Alex Duda Nampa, ID
5. #39 Brandon McLean Meridian, ID
TEAM Mazda Subaru Mini Stocks
Quick Time – Ian Michael Pederson, 15.280 seconds*
A Heat Winner – #24 Jayson Wardle
B Heat Winner – #4 Luke Wolverton
Main Event 1. #24 Jayson Wardle Nampa, ID
2. #15 Fred Vigil Nampa, ID
3. #37 Donovan Johns Meridian, ID
4. #29 Danny Martin Star, ID
5. #5 Luke Wolverton Boise, ID
High School Tuners
Quick Time – Riley Rogers, 16.361 seconds*
A Heat Winner – #88 Riley Rogers
B Heat Winner – #82 James Strickwerda
Main Event 1. #88 Riley Rogers Meridian, ID
2. #13 DJ Sirani Oasis, ID
3. #82 James Strikwerda Caldwell, ID
4. #51 James Gates Nampa, ID
5. #00 Hailey Rogers Meridian, ID
*Group Qualifying Track Record
**Single Car Qualifying Track Record