Past the Pit Gate
by Danny Rosencrans

June 11, 2012) - Another solid field of 87 race teams checked in on a warm Sunday evening for mid season championship night at Quincy Raceways. The night got off to a rocky start, as track officials put lots of water on the track to try and counteract the hot sun and strong south breeze blowing towards the grandstand. Unfortunately, it took extra time to roll in the track, and as a result, things started about 30 minutes late. Combined with the new later starting time, things did not get going until around 7:00. And as so often happens on such a night, this was compounded by delays, most caused by a barrage of yellow flags! Officials made a good move by dropping the IMCA sport mods to the last race on the card, as only a dedicated sport mod fan could describe the action as anything less than painful to watch!

  Come feature time, the UMP mods ran first, and again they too had "yellow fever", especially in the early laps. Under green flag conditions, Steven Delonjay and Dave Weitholder dueled for the top spot and not without contact as we witness something of a rivalry in the making. While the two hot shoes battled, Michael Long found a way by, and took his second feature checkers of the weekend. Delonjay held off Weitholder, who was dragging most of his driver’s side car body in the closing laps. Jared Schlipman stayed in the mix for fourth, while Jake Griffin held off Jim Roach for fifth. It looks like the veteran Roach is finding the handle on the Mike Begley # B4. After dropping a valve in his engine a couple of weeks ago at QR, Steven Theivagt of Virginia, Il. was back with his sharp looking red # 36. Steve is celebrating his 40th anniversary of dirt track racing, and has had a tough start. Going through two power plants already, the veteran driver slipped a street stock engine in his ride to get back on the track. Hopefully things turn around for the # 36 team!

  The IMCA stock car class was only seven strong, with top contender Aaron Brocksieck taking the night off. The IMCA classes lined up their features straight up by points, giving Abe Huls the pole position. The Carthage racer led from flag to flag for his fifth main event checkers of 2012, including four flag to flag wins! Darin Weisinger continued his strong showing, recording a season best second place finish, and heat winner Michael Larsen came back from early trouble to outpace Terry Houston, whose early bobble dropped him from second to fifth, Jerry Jansen, and Gabe Harrison. Hobby stock hot shoe Nathan Anders made his season stock car debut in Weisinger's second entry, but dropped out early.

  The 17 car strong UMP late models rolled off third. Heat one and dash winner Dustin Griffin had the pole as he looked for a sweep. Last week's winner Jason Perry started alongside. Jake Griffin made only one lap, having fallen from the front to last in the final lap of his heat with a broken axle. Mark Burgtorf had been smoking in the final laps of his heat, but it turned out to be only a broken oil line on the # 15R. Clint Kirkham missed his heat, but made the feature call. An early caution sent third starting Jerry Lierly to the back of the pack, as Griffin and Perry dueled up front. A mid race restart saw fourth running Justin Reed contact the infield tire, ending his run, and Perry spun on a restart, sending him to the tail. UMP national point leader Jim Moon then moved up to challenge for the top spot, and actually led a couple of laps before Griffin regained the lead with eight circuits left. Dustin survived one more stoppage to garner his third main this season at QR, the only late model driver with more than one win. Moon recorded a season best - at QR - second, ahead of Denny Woodworth, Burgtorf, and a hard charging Lierly. One change in the late models has Terry Wilson taking over the driving duties in the # 155 from dad Gary.

  The hobby stock 20 lapper was a slam bang affair, with only seven of the 15 cars around at the checkers. Brandon Symmonds held the early lead before Brian Hoener moved to the front. Jake Powers were running second when a flat tire started a downward spiral for the # 0. After returning to the speedway, he spun and was hit by Travis Booher, knocking out both cars. Symmonds regained the point on lap 17, but Hoener came back one lap later. A flat tire sent Symmonds pit side with Jeff Delonjay scoring a season best runner up finish. Jamie Bevill took third ahead of Nathan Hayes and Justin Bevill.

  The IMCA sport compact feature also had plenty of action. Andrew Davis paced the race early before trying to take the high line around a lapped car, costing him the lead. A lap nine yellow set up a dash to the finish, and three Iowa drivers took the podium spots. Keokuk pilot Mike Hornung Jr outlasted Ft Madison’s Chuck Fullenkamp and Farmington driver Bill Michel for the win. Kim Abbott and Seith Woodruff followed the top three. Michel raced with a "For Sale" sign on his # 24, and this would be a good car for someone looking to go sport compact racing.

  As mentioned earlier, the IMCA sport mods ran last, with 13 cars on hand. Point leader Tony Dunker prevailed throughout the 20 lap, ten caution flag marathon, picking up win number five in eight nights of racing. Second went to the previous week’s winner, Bobby Anders, who ran second through out. Tanner Klingele, Joe Bliven, and Brad Holtmeyer completed the top five.

  Along night of racing ended around 11:00 PM. the first time in recent memory we have had such a long night.  We will look for better times next Sunday, as racing continues at the Broadway Bullring. Mark your racing calendar for the MOWA 410 sprint cars on Sunday July 1 when the late models will have the night off, and the $7,500 to win UMP late model Summernationals on Friday July 6. This race is an addition to the schedule, so be sure and mark it down! See you Sunday!











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