By Bryan Gapinski
Wilmot, Wis., August 11—Former Series Champion Mike Hess scored a wire-to-wire victory winning the 30-lap Stark Automotive Group/Mid-State Equipment Badger Midget Series feature, Saturday Night at Wilmot Raceway. The victory moved Hess into second place in series points, with five races remaining.
Separate incidents on the opening lap resulted in three complete restarts, the most serious of which saw Vance Lein flip, escaping injury. Once underway Hess jumped into the lead followed by the tight pack of Billy Balog, Bubba Altig, Brandon Waelti and Caleb Armstrong. Two cautions for stalled car on laps eight and ten kept the field close behind Hess. The next seven laps saw Hess hold off Altig for the lead, before the caution was displayed for a spun car.
On the Hess continued to run the lower portion on the multi-groove track leading Altig and Armstrong. Altig narrowed Hess’ advantage in the final two laps but was never able to challenge for the victory. Hess driving the Jerry Hardy owned Buzzard/Hawk Chevrolet No. 1 finished two-car lengths ahead of Altig, Armstrong, Waelti, and Balog. “The car was great on the bottom of the track tonight, its a fresh motor it ran perfect” commented Hess on his second career series feature win at the track.
Dalton Armstrong topped the field in qualifying with a lap of 14.477 seconds besting Brad Loyet’s three-year old record of 14.755 seconds. Jason Treault took the lead on the second lap winning the 15-lap Badger 600 Micro Series feature, finishing ahead of points leader Chad Bogar, fast qualifier Jake Reif, Matt Padtra, and Andrew Funk.
30-lap Feature: 1. Mike Hess; 2. Bubba Altig; 3. Caleb Armstrong; 4. Brandon Waelti; 5. Billy Balog; 6. Scott Hatton; 7. Dalton Armstrong; 8. Kurt Mayhew; 9. Eric Johnson; 10. Ray Seech; 11. Jeremy Bredeson; 12. Jason Therkelsen; 13. David Budres; 14. Bob Shreffler; 15. Cody Wisensel; 16. Andrew Felker; 17. Travis Berryhill; 18. Vance Lein.
10-lap Heat Race Winners: Felker, Hess, Hatton.
Fast Time: Dalton Armstrong, 14.477 seconds (NTR).
Cars Present: 19 Feature Lap Leaders: Hess 1-30.
**Lein flipped on opening lap of feature escaping injury.
Current Badger Midget Series points:
1. Bubba Altig 731; 2. Mike Hess 551; 3. Brandon Waelti 520; 4. Daniel Robinson 495; 5. Scott Hatton 487; 6. Danny Stratton 474; 7. Davey Ray 329; 8. Brad Kuhn 315; 9. David Budres 312; 10. Travis Berryhill 243.
15-lap Feature: 1. Jason Treault; 2. Chad Bogar; 3. Jake Reif; 4. Matt Padtra; 5. Andrew Funk; 6. Jerry Reif; 7. Scott Crawford; 8. D.J. Stefan; 9. Pat Jones; 10. Ray Seech.
8-lap Heat Race Winners: Bogar, Treault.
Fast Time: Jake Reif, 15.081 seconds.