WEST FARGO—Weekly dirt track racing continued at Red River Valley Speedway at the Red River Valley Fairground Friday night. Eighty-three race teams were checked in for action. The night featured the Fargo Force WISSOTA Super Stock Series for the first of four times in 2018.
In the first feature of the night, the IMCA stock cars put on a show throughout their 15-lap feature. Defending stock car track champion, Rob VanMil, battled all race long with stock car rookie, Brandon Schmidt. VanMil took the lead on lap five from the fifth starting position but relinquished the lead to Schmidt with three laps to go.
The two drivers raced door to door for the remainder of the event, swapping the lead on both ends of the three-eighths-mile clay oval. Schmidt had the advantage on the final lap, but VanMil got a strong run down the banking exiting turn two to pull even with Schmidt.
VanMil completed the pass coming out of the final set of turns coming to the checkered flag to steal the win by 0.176 seconds.
Schmidt and Tim Compson rounded out the podium.
After several attempts to get the first lap of the IMCA Sport Mod feature completed, Kelly Henderson of Minot, N.D., took the point. He was trailed by Matt Talley of Sabin, Minn, who kept within striking distance throughout the midpoint of the race. With two laps to go, Talley moved by Henderson to take the lead.
Henderson battled back on the final circuit and nearly reclaimed the lead. Talley’s car pushed up the track in turns three and four, which opened the door for Talley. It came down to a drag race to the checkers, where Talley hung on by a mere 0.069 seconds, equating to about two feet.
The INEX legends feature was the third feature of the evening and produced another late-race pass for the lead. Tim Estenson led the 16-car field on the final restart with under five laps to go. Estenson pulled away as the race resumed, but second place runner Sean Johnson quickly caught the leader.
With two laps to go, Johnson executed a slide job on Estenson to take the lead. Estenson powered back by on the final circuit to reclaim the point, but Johnson wasn’t done. Johnson drove his machine hard into turns three and four, pulled even with Estenson, but spun out coming to the checkers. Estenson held on to take the win as Tye Wilke and Kaitlyn Skalicky rounded out the top three.
On last week’s opener, Austin Arneson cruised to the IMCA modified win. On Friday, it was his brother Casey who parked it in victory lane.
Arneson led all 20 circuits en route to the win. He was followed to the line by his other brother, Cale Arneson, by a distant three and ½ seconds.
“This one feels great,” said Arneson in victory lane. “It’s been quite a few years since I’ve won here. I don’t have many laps around the track since they laid down the new dirt, but the car felt great out there tonight.”
Cole Searing claimed his first career Red River Valley Speedway win in the Fargo Force Super Stocks. The field was led to the green by Brian Bernotas, but Bernotas was quickly harassed by Searing and Jeff Crouse.
Around the midway point, Searing moved up to the high side and closed in on Bernotas. Searing made the pass for the lead, and ultimately the win with seven laps to go.
Maranda Borg took the lead in the early going of the IMCA hobby stock feature. Tim Shiek reeled in Borg around the halfway point and utilized a restart with five to go to take the lead. From there, Shiek cruised to the win over Borg and Brad Orvedal.
Feature: 1. 2-Casey Arneson, Fargo. 2. 99-Cale Arneson, Fargo. 3. 9-Billy Kendall, Baxter, Minn. 4. 17G-Michael Greseth, Harwood, N.D. 5. Austin Arneson, Fargo, ND
Feature: 1. 5T-Matt Talley, Sabin, Minn. 2. 24-Kelly Henderson, Minot, N.D. 3. 8-Luke Johnson, Moorhead. 4. 40-Chris VanMil, Barnesville, Minn. 5. 51-Kelly Jacobson, Fargo, ND
IMCA Stock Cars
Feature: 1. 40-Rob VanMil, Barnesville, Minn. 2. 219-Brandon Schmidt, Hillsboro, N.D. 3. 49-Tim Compson, Valley City, N.D. 4. 18-Mike Anderson, Walcott, N.D. 5. 4-Rick Schulz, Horace, N.D.
IMCA Hobby Stocks
Feature: 1. 31X-Tim Shiek, Fargo. 2. 73-Maranda Borg, Harwood, N.D. 3. 3XL-Brad Orvedal, Fargo. 4. 14-Alyssa White, West Fargo. 5. 106-Eric Novacek, West Fargo.
Feature: 1. 14T-Tim Estenson, Fargo. 2. 72-Tye Wilke, Detroit Lakes, Minn. 3. 8JR-Kaitlyn Skalicky, Fargo. 4. 20-Alex Braseth, Ulen, Minn. 5. 69-Brian Hanson, Jamestown, N.D.
WISSOTA Super Stocks
Feature: 1. 10-Cole Searing, Huron, S.D. 2. 29*-Jeff Crouse, Alexandria, Minn. 3. 43-Brian Bernotas, Colfax, N.D. 4. 11-William Wadeson, Alice, N.D. 5. 10W-Blake Whitlock, Watertown, SD