Mike Balcaen with crew member Paul Manske in victory lane Saturday night in Jamestown. Speedway Shots photo.
Mike Balcaen won his first NLRA series feature of the season Saturday night at the Jamestown Speedway in Jamestown, ND. The win is his third at the high-banked, quarter-mile, Stutzman County speedplant, and also his 26th with the series, tying the late great John Seitz for second on the all-time wins list.
Donny Schatz won both the NLRA and World of Outlaw features at River Cities last Friday. Mike Spieker photo.
For the third time in his career, Donny Schatz, driver of the No. 15 Fargo Petro Rocket, won the NLRA feature, and followed that up with winning the World of Outlaws Sprint Car main event at the River Cities Speedway. The win in the Late Model is his second of the season, and his seventh with the series overall. That puts him in a tie with current series regular Troy Schill, driver of the No. 11 Mid Ag Dispatch MasterSbilt, and former series champion Troy Olson.
Bill Mooney, driver of the No. 2 Lithia Toyota MasterSbilt by JMR, won the season opener at the River Cities Speedway in Grand Forks last Friday night. Defending Wissota national champion Dustin Strand finished second in the No. 71 RHR Swag Millenium, with Zach Naastad, driver of the No. Z17 Q&Z Plumbing Millenium third, Brad Seng, driver of the No. 12 S&S Transport MB Custom fourth, and Joey Pederson, driver of the No. 7P Dalhstrom Motors MB Custom rounding out the top five.
Dustin Strand, driver of the No. 71 Q&Z Plumbing & Heating Millenium, became the second driver this season to win two NLRA features in six days, winning Saturday night at the Devils Lake Speedway near Crary, ND. Strand's first win in the six day time period came at the Red River Valley Speedway on July 17th. Strand matched Cole Schill's mark, as Schill won on June 18th in Greenbush and June 24th in West Fargo.
Strand's win is also his seventh career NLRA series triumph, tying him two-time series champion Troy Schill, and 2006 series co-champion Troy Olson for ninth on the series all time wins list.
Dustin Strand became the second driver this season to win NLRA feature six days apart, as he passed Shane Edginton on lap twelve to win at the Devils Lake Speedway on Saturday night. Cole Schill won races six days apart earlier this season on June 18th in Greenbush and June 24th in Fargo. Strand's win is also his seventh career NLRA series triumph, tying him two-time series champion Troy Schill, and 2006 series co-champion Troy Olson for ninth on the series all time wins list. As Strand was near victory, the trio of Manitoba racers battle three-wide for fourth in lapped traffic, with ninth starting Bill Mooney securing second at the line for his second consecutive hard charger award, over third finishing Shane Edginton, who nursed his damaged number four car home third, and Mike Balcaen who finished fourth. Brad Seng rounded out the top five after starting twelfth. The races were delayed by one hour after it rained most of the day, but the feature was arguably the best of the season thus far in NLRA competition. Brad Seng will carry a 30 point advantage over Shane Edginton when the series returns to the Greenbush Race Park this Saturday July the 30th, as the series will one again co-headline an event with the Northern Outlaw Sprint Association Sprint Cars.
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.