Friday, July 31, 2009

Caruth Wins Gambler at Marshalltown

The final night in July found me at the Marshalltown Speedway for a weekly show. However, this night would be spiced up a little bit as the IMCA modifieds were also going to be running a "Gambler" race, a race in which participants and sponsors put money into the pot and the winner takes all.

Before that race could be run, the rest of the program would need to be run first. First to hit the track would be the dwarf cars/mod lites. D.J. Robinson used his outside front row start to grab the lead in the early going, but Tim Hennigar blazed his way to the runner up spot by lap two after starting eleventh. Hennigar would then take the top spot away on the next lap, but lost the handle in turn two and gave up the lead to Joel Huggins. By the time lap six rolled around, Eric Hendrickson had passed twelve cars as he found his way up to fourth after starting sixteenth. Hennigar would regain the lead, but Huggins lost the second spot to Mike Kennedy after a restart. Point leader Mike Morrill also got by Huggins to take over the third slot, but it was all Tim Hennigar as he picked up his first win of the season at Marshalltown. Mike Kenneday was second, Mike Morrill third, Joel Huggins fourth, and Eric Hendrickson rounded out the top five.

1. 57 Tim Hennigar
2. 95 Mike Kennedy
3. 6 Mike Morrill
4. x50 Joel Huggins
5. 66F Eric Hendrickson
6. 64 Randy Bryan
7. 88 James May
(all I was able to get)

Next up would be the IMCA sportmods. A good field of twenty-three cars took the green flag that saw veteran racer Duane VanDeest take the helm. Lap two saw Joel Rust hop wheels with pole sitter Jenae Gustin as a couple more cars would also get collected. Bill Hildreth dove to the bottom of VanDeest on the restart, but couldn't complete the pass. Following a restart, Luke Wanninger duck to the inside of Hildreth to take over the second spot while Joel Bushore powered his machine on the top side to get by Hildreth for third. On yet another restart Bushore dipped to the inside of VanDeest for the lead, but Wanninger somehow found room under both of them to complete the pass for the lead. Scott Davis then found the quick way around to make his way up to second as a three-car battle for third was just behind him. In the end it would be Luke Wanninger back in victory lane as he was followed across the line by Scott Davis, Jake Strayer, Brad Iverson, and Joel Bushore.

1. 20 Luke Wanninger
2. 81D Scott Davis
3. 18J Jake Strayer
4. 8 Brad Iverson
5. 87 Joel Bushore
6. 21V Duane VanDeest
7. 3 Kevin Sather
8. 2z Zach Rawlins
9. 98 Bill Hildreth
(all I was able to get)

The IMCA modifieds would be next out on the track so they would be given enough time to make adjustments for the Gambler race later on in the show. Tim Murty kept the theme going as he used the outside front row to grab the lead early on. Adam Larson's night would come to an end early as his motor expired on lap three. Larson was third in points going into the night, just ten points back. The battle for third was a good one as Brett Ladehoff and Scott Hogan raced wheel to wheel for several laps. A caution came out on lap nine, and by that time Ryan Gustin was making some noise as he was sitting in the sixth spot after starting twelfth. Scott Hogan made his way to second, but my eyes were glued to Gustin's car as he used the cushion to advance his way to third and a lap later to second just before a caution flag came out with just three laps remaining. Gustin again tried to use the momentum off the top side, but he came up just short as Tim Murty took home the win by about half a car length. Ryan Gustin was second in his first-ever IMCA modified race, Scott Hogan was third, Jimmy Gustin fourth, and Troy Cordes rounded out the top five. Ryan Gustin was driving brother Jimmy's backup car.

1. 99M Tim Murty
2. 19R Ryan Gustin
3. 33D Scott Hogan
4. 19 Jimmy Gustin
5. 71 Troy Cordes
6. 7c Nate Caruth
(all I was able to get, concentrated on the top two cars)

Eric Flander led the first lap of the IMCA stock car feature that saw twenty-one cars take the green flag. Flander's lead would not last long, however, as Michael Jaennette would take over the race lead the next lap while point leader Dustin Smith quickly made his way to third. Smith would take the lead away from Jaennette on lap four and put some distance between he and the rest of the field. Damon Murty took his car to the top side and made up some ground as he got by Flander first and later Jaennette to move into the runner up spot. Another driver using the upper groove was Jeff Wollam as he would also get by Jaennette. A caution with six laps to go put Murty on Smith's rear bumper, but Murty was unable to make a move late in the race. Fifth place was up for grabs as about five cars were battling for that spot. But it would once again be Dustin Smith ending up in victory lane followed by Damon Murty, Jeff Wollam, Trent Murphy, and Dave Atcher.

1. 85 Dustin Smith
2. 99D Damon Murty
3. 3w Jeff Wollam
4. 25 Trent Murphy
5. 2 Dave Atcher
6. 59 Tracy Gienger
7. 12 Eric Flander
8. 93 Michael Jaennette
9. 60 Clay Deppe
(all I was able to get)

The IMCA hobby stocks were next up as they were set to go twelve laps. Josh Saunders passed Jennifer Hulin on lap two to take the lead before a quick caution flew. Terry Shaffar used the restart to complete the pass on Saunders for the lead on the bottom side of the speedway. Todd Reitzler was making moves of his own as he moved up to the second spot after passing Saunders on the high side. Following another restart, Devin Smith got under Eric Knutson for the fourth spot with five laps remaining. Smith would use the same move on Saunders the next lap to take over third while Knutson followed Smith to fourth. A two-lap shootout was needed after another caution, but Terry Shaffar was able to keep his car out front as he took home the win. Todd Reitzler was second, Devin Smith third, Eric Knutson fourth, and Michael Murphy rounded out the top five.

1. 35 Terry Shaffar
2. 22R Todd Reitzler
3. 81 Devin Smith
4. 12K Eric Knutson
5. 25M Michael Murphy
6. 52 Josh Saunders
(all I could get, 5th and 6th place was close so may be switched)

The modified Gambler race was the final event of the evening. Ten cars ran twenty laps to determine who was going home with $1,000. Tim Murty drew the pole and led the first couple of laps, but Nate Caruth and Troy Cordes were battling it out for second just behind him. Caruth would get the spot and later work under Murty to take the top spot away. Cordes used the top line to make his pass on Murty for second. A late caution bunched the field back up with four laps to go, but Cordes was unable to make a move as youngster Nate Caruth pocketed the big money on this night. Troy Cordes was second, Ryan Gustin third, Jon Snyder fourth, and Jay Noteboom was fifth.

1. 7c Nate Caruth
2. 71 Troy Cordes
3. 19R Ryan Gustin
4. 69x Jon Snyder
5. 7N Jay Noteboom
6. 2 Joey Schaefer
7. 19J Jay Schmidt
8. 19 Jimmy Gustin
9. 40RC Rod Clement
10. 99M Tim Murty

Overall it was a good night of racing at Marshalltown. The track had two lanes of racing all night and it slicked off pretty well. Hats off to the track crew for doing a wonderful job all week. Next week the speedway will have a stock car king of the hill race along with the normal show.

- Racing may be a hobby, but it's DEFINITELY addictive!!

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