5.5.18 Upper Midwest Traditional Sprints Results - Dirt Racing Report

5.5.18 Upper Midwest Traditional Sprints Results

With the weather not allowing any sprint car racing to take place in the month of April in this area, the 2018 POWRi UMSS Lucas Oil Traditional Sprint Car Series season got underway on Saturday night May 5 at the Cedar Lake Speedway. A strong field of 21 POWRi Lucas Oil Traditional sprints signed into the pits on a pleasant spring evening. Despite battling through a couple of light rain showers later on, the program was completed and Cam Schafer once again claimed a victory on opening night. Schafer, the 2014 TSCS Champion, won the 2017 opener at CLS and did likewise this year in what turned out to be a competitive 25 lap feature event. Schafer celebrated his opening night win in Rock Auto Victory Lane and commented afterwards during his winner’s interview on the race up front for the lead. For Schafer, it was his thirteenth career win in the Traditional sprint car division. Schafer was driving the Kamrath #14 sprinter.
Three heat races were run with Bryan Roach, Anna Hippe and 2017 TSCS Rookie of the Year Brad Peterson claiming the top spots. Jeff Pellersels actually led all the way in the first ten lap heat, but he failed to cross the scales after the race which resulted in a DQ. Immediately after taking the checkers in the second heat, Anna Hippe’s car exploded an engine entering turn one which ended her night. All three heats ran caution-free. Passing and finishing points in the three heat races saw Roach, Peterson, Joseph Kouba, 2017 TSCS Champion Mike Mueller, Jon Lewerer and Schafer earn the right to redraw for the feature. In past seasons, only the top four cars redrew. In 2018, the top six cars in points will redraw. Anna Hippe actually earned the second most points, but her blown engine allowed Cam Schafer to move up into the top six cars.
Following the redraw, Joseph Kouba and Lewerer brought the 20 car starting field to the green. Lewerer, looking for his first TSCS feature win in his fifth season behind the wheel of a non-winged sprint car, jumped out to an early lead. On lap three, Mike Mueller drove under Lewerer for the lead. Mueller held the top spot for eight laps until Schafer blasted around him up top on the cushion on lap 11. With 14 laps scored, the lone caution flew when Brad Peterson slid sideways in turn one. Lewerer bounced off a couple of cars trying to avoid Peterson and collected rookie Ryan Buck. The two cars shot up the track with Buck’s car contacting the concrete wall. It looked like Buck’s car might tip over but remained upright. Lewerer surprisingly kept going and retained his position in the running order with some damage on the side right side nerf bar. It was Schafer all the way during the eleven lap green flag dash to the checkers after that. Lewerer’s car seemed to race better after the incident and he drove around Mueller to finish second. Mueller, 13th starter Neal Matuska and Roach completed the top five. Rounding out the top ten finishers were Denny Stordahl, Jeremy Kerzman, Johnny Parsons III, Peterson and Scott Brandt. Only two cars failed to finish with fifteen cars on the lead lap at the conclusion of the 25 lap main event. Five new (rookie) drivers were on hand to kick off the season.
Neal Matuska earned the $100 GRP Motorsports Hard Charger Award with a gain of nine positions in the feature. Cam Schafer earned a special $100 gift card from Fiesta Cancun Mexican Bar & Grill, one of Brad Peterson’s sponsors, for his feature event victory. The POWRi Lucas Oil Traditional sprints have a weekend off before returning to action with a doubleheader weekend at the Princeton Speedway on Friday night May 18 and the Cedar Lake Speedway on Saturday night May 19. The May 19 event at CLS will be the first race in the CLS Shootout Series. The POWRi UMSS Lucas Oil Winged Sprints will race with the Traditional sprints at both events. Keep tabs on all of the POWRi UMSS Lucas Oil Traditional sprint car action by visiting our website at www.umsprints.com or by following the series on Facebook and My Race Pass.
Race #1 – Cedar Lake Speedway 5-5-18 Results:
Lucas Oil POWRi A Feature 1 (25 Laps): 1. 14-Cam Schafer, [6]; 2. 69S-Jon Lewerer, [5]; 3. 87-Mike Mueller, [4]; 4. 48-Neal Matuska, [13]; 5. 99-Bryan Roach, [1]; 6. 34-Denny Stordahl, [10]; 7. 3K-Jeremy Kerzman, [9]; 8. 12-Johnny Parsons III, [7]; 9. 93-Brad Peterson, [2]; 10. 7-Scott Brandt, [12]; 11. 55-Joseph Kouba, [3]; 12. 12X-Blake Anderson, [14]; 13. 33C-Cody Emmans, [11]; 14. 38S-Allen Stettner, [18]; 15. 19-Gary Mueller, [17]; 16. 19B-Jack Berger, [16]; 17. 95-Kevin Bradwell, [8]; 18. 2J-John Lowe, [19]; 19. (DNF) 00-Ryan Buck, [20]; 20. (DNF) 22-Jeff Pellersels, [15]; (DNS) 16-Anna Hippe,
Cautions: (1) yellow for crash with 14 laps scored resulting in rookie driver Ryan Buck riding the hook to the pits and Brad Peterson tagging the tail on the restart. Lap Leaders: Lewerer 1-2, Mike Mueller 3-10, Schafer 11-25.
GRP Motorsports Heat 1 (10 Laps): 1. 99-Bryan Roach, [3]; 2. 55-Joseph Kouba, [4]; 3. 95-Kevin Bradwell, [2]; 4. 19B-Jack Berger, [7]; 5. 33C-Cody Emmans, [5]; 6. 38S-Allen Stettner, [6]; (DQ) 22-Jeff Pellersels, [1]
No cautions. Pellersels led all the way but failed to cross the scales after the race resulting in a DQ. Roach was then awarded the win.
Track Rat Photos Heat 2 (10 Laps): 1. 16-Anna Hippe, [2]; 2. 12-Johnny Parsons III, [1]; 3. 69S-Jon Lewerer, [6]; 4. 3K-Jeremy Kerzman, [5]; 5. 7-Scott Brandt, [3]; 6. 12X-Blake Anderson, [4]; 7. 2J-John Lowe, [7]
No cautions. Lap Leader: Hippe 1-10. Immediately following the checkers, Anna Hippe’s car blew an engine entering turn one ending her night.
Fiesta Cancun Mexican Bar & Grill Heat 3 (10 Laps): 1. 93-Brad Peterson, [2]; 2. 87-Mike Mueller, [4]; 3. 14-Cam Schafer, [5]; 4. 34-Denny Stordahl, [1]; 5. 48-Neal Matuska, [3]; 6. 19-Gary Mueller, [7]; 7. 00-Ryan Buck, [6]
No cautions. Lap Leader: Peterson 1-10.