Schultz Outruns Balog for Prestigious Kenosha County Fair Victory at Wilmot!
Wilmot, WI, August 16, 2013 – The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint series has been fortunate to have had a solid rookie class this season. Showing the way in the Rookie of the Year chase has been Jeremy Schultz, a former champion in area 360 sprints, who had shown the speed to run with the front of the pack.
Series officials knew it was not if, but when, the standout rookie pilot would capture his first IRA victory. Schultz answered that question on Friday night during the running of the Kenosha County Fair events at Wilmot Raceway as he was able to fend off a late race charge by 5-time and defending champion, Bill Balog, to earn the victory.
The victory came on a fast and tacky, third-mile, clay oval with Schultz having to negotiate lapped traffic in the closing laps all while Balog applied the same pressure which had netted him so many victories over the years. Schultz proved he had the speed and the talent to turn back the challenges of one of IRA’s finest and perhaps begin to build a legacy of his own.
While Balog did not reach victory lane, the efforts of Balog and his B2 Motorsports team might consider second place a victory. Uncomfortable with the way the engine in his car was responding Balog ‘s crew swapped motors after qualifying. Unable to make the heat race, Balog started the B-main where he finished second to transfer to the the main event. Balog then charged through the pack from his 12th place starting spot to reach second by the time the checkered flag fell in the 30 lap main event.
The evening started with 31 drivers checking in for qualifying and the excitement began to build early with Brett Triplett eclipsing Balog’s track record at the third-mile clay oval blistering the track with a lap of just over 12.5 seconds.
Drama continued in the heat races with Mike Kertscher and Todd King making contact resulting in both King and Kertscher flipping their rides. Kertscher, who already had won an event at Wilmot this season on the IRA tour, was able to return for the B-main thanks to quick work by his crew. Kertscher then would outrun Balog to earn the B-main victory and place himself in the main event.
A big invert would place Schultz on the pole of the contest, with Wayne Johnson, a regular at Knoxville Raceway and a former multi-time winner in the IRA sprints starting to his outside.
The pair would square off at the drop of the green flag with Schultz getting the jump on Johnson for the opening lead. Third place became a contest of wills between Todd Daun and Scott Uttech.
On lap four Nick Alden who had stellar performance during his last appearance at Wilmot Raceway, lost the handle on his ride looping in turn four forcing the first caution flag.
By this point Balog had already been charging through the pack. Action resumed with Schultz again setting the pace with Johnson and Daun falling into second and third. By lap seven Balog had reached the top five and on the next lap he moved into the fourth spot and began to challenge Daun.
Out front Schultz was setting a pace which allowed him to pull away from Johnson opening up a ten car length lead.
Things became more challenging for Schultz as on lap 12 Raymond Hensley flew off the turn two embankment and the caution flag flew bunching the field.
Schultz once again got a good restart pulling away from his rivals. The third and final caution flew on lap 16 when Phillip Mock did a 360 spin bringing out the yellow per IRA series rules.
The balance of the race would go without interruption. As he had done before, Schultz nailed the restart creating a gap on Johnson who seemed unable to find a way to close on the high flying Schultz. Balog meanwhile slipped past Daun for third and began to reel in Johnson.
With five laps to go Schultz began to encounter lapped traffic and started carefully negotiating his way through back markers. This allowed both Johnson and Balog to begin to close in on Schultz.
Balog, an expert in lapped traffic, found a way to work past Johnson for the runner-up spot working into the position coming off turn two with three laps to go.
Balog then methodically closed the gap on Schultz closing within a car length. Schultz made a brilliant move on the final lap to place a lapped car between himself and Balog, and in doing so was able to create the cushion he needed to score his for first career series victory by two car lengths. Balog would settle for second followed by Johnson making his first showing of 2013 payoff with a third place performance.
Daun earned a solid fourth place showing followed by Scott Uttech who earned the final top five position.
Kertscher rallied from his early evening problems to finish sixth taking the spot from Scott Neitzel on the final lap. Neitzel, Jordan Goldesberry, Tripplett and Matt Vandervere comprised the top ten finishers
The series continues with it’s second straight night of racing at Wilmot Raceway presenting the Roger Iles Tribute race. Ken Iles of Carriage Auto Body presents the event in honor of his father and has put up a bonus for the top 3 in points accumulated over the 2-day race weekend and Saturday nights main event will pay $3600 to the winner of the 36 lap contest.
Over 30 of the areas best 410 sprint car pilots are expected to do battle for top honors.
Joining the Bumper to Bumper IRA Sprints will be the R.A. Adams / Advance Auto Parts Street Stocks, Fec’s Place / Outlaw Race Parts Mini Sprints, and Vintage Mods in support roles.
The grandstand gates open at 5:00pm with the racing action set to get underway at 6:45pm.
The Kenosha County Fairgrounds where the track resides is located just north of the intersection of county roads C and W in Wilmot, WI. Wilmot is located just 8 miles west of
I-94 taking county highway C which is exit 345. For those seeking additional information please check out the track website at www.wilmotraceway.com or call the track on race day at 262-862-2090.
The IRA Outlaw Sprint Series is proudly supported by Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts & Service Centers, Hoosier Tire, Osborn & Son Trucking, TW Metals, Onan, Carriage Auto Body, Polaris DEFENSE, and Mother’s Polishes and Waxes. The office of the IRA Sprints can be reached at 815-759-9269 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
Event: #16 – Wilmot Raceway – Wilmot, WI – August 16, 2013
Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint Cars
A Feature (30 Laps): 1. Jeremy Schultz; 2. Bill Balog; 3. Wayne Johnson; 4. Todd Daun; 5. Scott Uttech; 6. Mike Kertscher; 7. Scott Neitzel; 8. Jordan Goldesberry; 9. Brett Tripplett; 10. Matt Vandervere; 11. Russel Borland; 12. Tommy Sexton; 13. Bill Wirth; 14. Dave Uttech; 15. Phillip Mock; 16. Kris Spitz; 17. Nick Alden; 18.Dennis Spitz; 19. Jereme Schroeder; 20. Brandon Thone; 21. Ryan Irwin; 22. Raymond Hansley
B Feature (15 Laps): (Top 7- Transfer Cars) 1 . Mike Kertscher; 2. Bill Balog; 3. Bill Wirth; 4. Ryan Irwin; 5. Jordan Goldesberry; 6. Jeremy Schroeder; 7. Raymond Hansley;
Heat 1 (10 Laps): 1. Todd Daun; 2. Scott Neitzel; 3. Wayne Johnson; 4. Matt Vandervere; 5. Brett Tripplett; 6. Raymond Hansley; 7. Jereme Schroeder; 8. Wayne Modjeski; 9. Chris Dodd; 10. Andrew Kiedrowski; 11. Chad Tessman
Heat 2 (10 Laps): 1. Dave Uttech; 2. Kris Spitz; 3. Scott Uttech; 4. Jeremy Schultz; 5. Phillip Mock; 6. Bill Wirth; 7. Jordan Goldesberry; 8. Michael Decker; 9. Allen Hafford; 10. Bill Balog – dns
Heat 3 (10 Laps): 1. Tommy Sexton; 2. Nick Alden; 3. Dennis Spitz; 4. Russel Borland; 5. Brandon Thone; 6. Dave Maynard; 7. Patrick Hayes; 8. Ryan Irwin; 9. Mike Kertscher; 10. Todd King