The off season may be in full swing around our neck of the woods, but that isn't stopping some drivers that we are familiar with to make the long trip to the USA Raceway in Tucson, Arizona for the 10th annual Wild West Shootout. Around fifty drivers from 19 states and 2 Canadian provinces are expected to compete during the series, which includes six races in nine nights, starting this Saturday, January the 9th. Some of the sports biggest names are expected to make the long tow to Arizona including Brandon Sheppard, Don O'Neal, Jimmy Owens, Billy Moyer, and WoO Champion Shane Clanton, just to name a few. The following is a roster of area drivers that are also expected to make the trek to the southwest.
The late model season has officially come to an end, with and a few NLRA series regulars racing their final races of the 2015 season over the last two weekends. Dustin Strand, driver of the No. 71 Q&Z Plumbing & Heating Moyer Longhorn, and Cole Schill, driver of the No. 44 Rivinius Ranch MasterSbuilt by JMR, ran at the Fall Classic at the Viking Speedway in Alexandria, MN on October 9th and 10th. Strand finished seventh in the main event, with Cole Schill finishing eleventh. The race was won by two-time series winner this season Don Shaw.
Even though the NLRA season has come to a close, most of its' series regulars continued their racing seasons over the past two weekends. 2015 NLRA series champion Dustin Strand, driver of the No. 71 Q&Z Plumbing & Heating Moyer Longhorn, won the 44th annual Jamestown Stampede after starting third, and surviving a four car pileup that included the top three and a lapped car, continuing on to victory over Cody Skytland and Matt Aukland. NLRA series runner-up this season, Brad Seng, driver of the No. 12S S&S Transport MB Custom, finished seventh at stampede after starting 14th.
Thursday: Diemel Wins The Race; Strand Wins Second Series Title
Defending Seitz Memorial champion AJ Diemel of Elk Mound, WI kicked off his title defense in style with a win Thursday night at the 'Prelude to the Johnny' at the River Cities Speedway in Grand Forks, ND.
Diemel and Joey Pederson, driver of the No. 7P Dahlstrom Motors MB Custom, shared the front row at the start, in a rematch of last years' finale at the Seitz Memorial, as the pair was separated by just .114 seconds last September.
Defending Seitz Memorial champion AJ Diemel of Elk Mound, WI kicked off his title defense in style with a win Thursday night at the 'Prelude to the Johnny' at the River Cities Speedway in Grand Forks, ND. Diemel and Joey Pederson shared the front row at the start, in a rematch of last years' finale at the Seitz Memorial, as the pair was separated by just .114 seconds last September. Diemel lead all 25 laps, and became the fourth different Wisconsin native to win the event in five races. The top five included four previous Seitz Memorial champions, as Diemel was followed home by 2009 champ Pat Doar, who finished second, 2010 champ Cody Skytland, who finished third, and two-time winner Brad Seng, who finished fourth. Dustin Strand rounded out the top five, and in doing so, secured his second NLRA series title in three years. Strand won by 32 points of last seasons' champion Brad Seng. An incredible 47 cars entered the show Thursday night, with drivers like Zach Johnson and Curt Gelling among some of the drivers rumored to show up for the rest of the weekend. Final Point standing and full Results can by found by clicking the highlighted words. Photos of Diemel (58) and Strand (71) are courtesy of Mike Spieker, and Traci Palya respectively.
Don Shaw and Brad Seng picked up victories on Sunday during the series annual Labor Day Double Header events at the Viking Speedway in Alexandria, MN on Sunday. Shaw's win was his second of the season, and third overall, while Seng kept his title hopes alive with his fifth series win of the season, and second at Viking. This marks the first time in series history that racers other than Jeff Wildung or Zach Johnson won races on Labor Day weekend in Alexandria, as the pair had won all but two labor day events at the big half mile since 2007.
For the sixth consecutive season, and eighth overall, the NLRA is scheduled to run its' annual Labor Day double header this Saturday night, September the 5th, and Sunday night, September the 6th, at the Viking Speedway in Alexandria, MN. The races are scheduled to be the second and third appearances by the series during this, the 50th year of racing at the big half-mile oval on the Douglas County Fairgrounds. A pair of rain-outs claimed two previous series events on Sunday May 24th, and during the heat races on Saturday June 27th. The races are scheduled to be the 36th and 37th appearances by the series at the Viking Speedway, the most of any track on the NLRA calendar.
2013 NLRA series champion Dustin Strand, driver of the No. 71 Q&Z Plumbing & Heating Moyer Longhorn, won his second NLRA series feature of the season in dramatic fashion Saturday night at the Devils Lake Speedway near Doyon, ND. The win is also Strand's fifth NLRA series triumph, tying him with a pair of all-time greats, Joel Cryderman and Tom Corcoran. Strand's win also tightened up an already super close battle at the top of the NLRA series season long point standings, as Strand now sits just 14 markers back of Mike Balcaen, driver of the No. 10 Northstar Canada Black Diamond, with three races remaining in the season.
This Saturday night, August the 29th, the NLRA makes its' second and final appearance this season, and 17th overall, at the Devils Lake Speedway near Doyon, ND. This race was postponed due to rain last Saturday, but the series schedule included this Saturday as a rain date when the schedule was made in the off season. During the series previous visit to Devils Lake on July 18, Brad Seng, driver of the No. 12S S&S Transport MB Custom, lead the first ten laps before relinquishing the lead to Mike Balcaen, driver of the No. 10 Northstar Canada Black Diamond, in lapped traffic on lap eleven.
A pair of canadian drivers were winners of the two NLRA series races contested last week, as Mike Balcaen of Winnipeg, MB won at the Red River Co-Op Speedway on Thursday night, and Bill Mooney of Selkirk, MB won at the River Cities Speedway on Friday night.
Mike Balcaen, the NLRA series point leader and driver of the No. 10 Northstar Canada Black Diamond, lead flag-to-flag for his first NLRA series victory of the season, and 22nd of his NLRA career, third best on the series' all-time wins list.