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  .: August 24, 2019 :.

Kingsley Edges Hanson In Rice Lake Speedway Thriller

By Ed Reichert

Rice Lake WI, Aug. 24 – Season Champions were crowned in all five divisions Saturday night at the Rice Lake Speedway as the speedway wrapped up the regular season racing programs. All that remains is the Labor Day weekend special that will be contested this upcoming Saturday, August 31st which will then wrap up the sixty seventh season of racing at Rice Lake.

After some highly competitive feature events with some late race dramatics in several of them, crowned as Season Champions were Cody Cimfl in the Pure Stocks, Hunter VanGilder in the Street Stocks, Kevin Adams in the Midwest Modifieds, Aaron Wilson in the Super Stocks and Mike Anderson in the Modified class. Included in the dramatics of the night were two last lap passes that decided the Pure Stock and Super Stock winners.

The Pure Stock feature saw Bob Thompson start on the pole and lead through the early going of the race. After a first lap spin, the rest of the race ran off nonstop which helped bunch the leaders and increase the tension as Thompson fought to hold off his challengers. The early main threat was George Richards, who started right behind Thompson and was on his rear bumper for most of the race. Richards made several attempts to get under Thompson for the lead but each time Bob would fight off the Mondovi challenger and hold on to the lead.

Working his way up from the third row was Cody Cimfl and as the laps grew shorter to crown a winner, the race became a three car battle with Richards continuing to pressure Thompson and Cimfl looking for an opening. Cody found some room between the two challengers and suddenly they were three wide for the lead, with Richards getting moved up the track and Thompson now trying to fight off Cimfl. They raced side by side with Thompson pushing as hard as he could to keep Cimfl behind but as they came off the final corner, Cimfl shot to the low groove, got a great run off the corner and edged past Thompson to take the checkered flag as the winner. A frustrated Richards had to settle for third with Jay Folz and Mike Huebner Sr completing the top five.

Cody Cimfl has raced on and off over the past few years, having driven both Midwest Modifieds and Modifieds for family operated teams but had never visited victory lane as a feature race winner until Saturday night as he collected his first ever main event win at Rice Lake. He also became the eighth different winner in the division here this season.

VanGilder led every lap of the Street Stock feature but it was hardly an easy win as he was pressured from start to finish in the race. The early challenger was C.J. Wagner who started beside VanGilder and as the race progressed, ducked right in behind him with challenges made in every corner. Behind them, there was much battling for position with Kolby Kiehl, Cody Kummer, the Anderson brothers and others all locked in combat as they fought for position.

At the halfway mark of the race, Shawn Amundson was turned around to create the only yellow flag of the race and on the restart, as VanGilder retook the lead, it was Kummer who moved into the second spot and began to pressure the leader heavily. Making some great advances from back in the pack was Jay Kesan, who started at the back of the pack after some heat race difficulties relegated him to the tail of the field. He moved to the outside lane and as many of the challengers stacked up on the low side, he was able to advance a number of spots.

With the end of the race nearing, it turned into a two car battle as the front two cars managed to put space on the field. Kummer was glued on VanGilder's rear bumper, looking for an opening and hoping for a single mistake as both were driving to the absolute limit of control.

The last couple of laps saw this pattern continue as Kummer was inches from touching the VanGilder car as they circled the track. However, VanGilder refused to make a mistake and he crossed the line as the winner with Kummer glued to the rear of his car. Wagner started to slow in the last couple of laps and that created a wild scramble for position behind the leaders with Amundson's hard charge through the field providing him with the third spot with Kesan next in line. Rookie driver Zach Beaulieu came through on the final night of racing to earn his first top five finish of the year. VanGilder was one of only two drivers to complete the double honors of earning a point title and a track championship. It was Hunter's third win of the year at Rice Lake.

The other driver to win both the point title in his class and then complete the double by winning the Season Championship was Kevin Adams in the Midwest Modified class. He started on the pole for the feature race and led the entire distance, being chased only by Shane Halopka for the entire race. The top two contenders pulled away from the pack and staged their own battle for the lead while behind them the racing was much closer for third. Denny Cutsforth held the position briefly before he was passed by Travis Anderson who was in turn soon challenged by Joe Chaplin Jr for that spot.

A late race tangle set up a four lap sprint to the finish and on the green, Adams got a good jump and put some distance between himself and Halopka with Chaplin Jr moving into third. The top three stretched their lead over the field and that is the way they finished. The best battle at the end saw Calvin Iverson drive past Anderson on the final tour to take the fourth spot.

It has been a season of utter domination by Adams in the Midwest Modifieds as he won his tenth victory in the class this year, tops among all drivers at the track. No one else in the Midwest Modified class has been able to win more than a single feature here this year.

The Super Stock feature was certainly the wildest main event of the night and it is not often that the third place car with one lap to go wins the race but that is exactly what happened on Saturday. Things started early in the race when pole sitter and early leader Willie Johnsen Jr was spun in turn four on the opening lap, triggering an early yellow and restoring Johnsen Jr to the front of the field.

The first few laps saw Johnsen Jr and Eric Olson battling hard for the lead as Curt Myers moved in and made it a three car battle for the lead. The next dramatic moment occurred when Myers tried to get around Olson down the front stretch, inadvertently catching the rear bumper of Olson's car and sending him spinning, which triggered another yellow and sent Myers to the back while Olson regained second.

The next ten laps saw some high speed battling for position as Johnsen Jr and Olson battled for the lead. Aaron Wilson, who started seventh, moved into third and was close to the leaders as they fought it out, lap after lap.

Meanwhile, Myers was making a huge comeback as he raced his way back through the pack and caught the leaders with several laps left. Wilson made heavy contact with the front stretch wall and slowed slightly with Myers moving into third and catching the lead duo.

Johnsen Jr continued to lead but on each corner Olson and now Myers would challenge him as they would slide up and try to edge past Willie but each time Johnsen Jr would fight them off in a war of nerves at high speed.

As Olson and Myers battled with Johnsen Jr, they were also battling with each other and as they fought down the back chute, contact was made between the two as they fought for real estate with Olson careening to a halt. The yellow waved, Olson was awarded his spot back and Myers went to the pits for triggering his second yellow flag of the event.

That left it to Johnsen Jr and Olson to settle matters, or so it appeared. Those two continued to battle each other very hard with Wilson sitting back behind them several car lengths in arrears. A yellow for debris triggered a two lap sprint to the finish and heightened the drama just as Olson edged past into the lead.

On the green, it was a two lap war between the top two runners with them leaning on each other heavily as they fought for the lead and tried to keep their cars on the track at the same time. They were door to door as they took the white flag and remained that way on the final lap. Down the back chute they continued to lean on each other and it got very heavy in the final corner as they ran each other high up the track toward the wall. Suddenly the seas parted and with a gigantic opening for him, the wounded car of Wilson drove thought the opening and scored one of the most stunning and unexpected upsets of the entire racing season. Olson was able to regain control quicker and he drove across the line for second with Johnsen Jr edging out Adam Soltis for third. Mike Siewert drove a clean race and earned his first top five finish of the season. Wilson's win was his first at the track since the 2017 racing season and made him the fifth different winner in the Super Stocks during the season.

It was all Mike Anderson in the Modified feature as he got the jump on Kevin Adams at the start and drove away for a non stop twenty lap win. Anderson was quick in the low groove and was really stretching his lead when Matt Leer moved to the top side of the track and started to make time, moving in to challenge Adams for second but both were considerably behind Anderson.

Adams then moved up to the wall also and he picked up the pace at that point. Gradually he began to close on the leader and he got as close as a couple car lengths near the midpoint of the feature while Jason Gross was also on the move too.

However, following that point, the lead between the two stabilized and then Anderson gradually began to pull away once again, and by the time the race was completed, he had again built up a comfortable lead. Gross put on an impressive performance as he was able to pass Leer for third and appeared to be the fastest car on the track at the end as he closed on Adams for the second spot. Leer settled for fourth with Mark Hanson completing the top five.

Anderson's win was his fifth at the track this year which made him the leader in feature wins for the Modifieds.

Next Saturday night will be the concluding event of the 2019 racing season at the Rice Lake Speedway. The Labor Day weekend special has been condensed to a one night race this year with all five divisions racing with the first green flag to follow 6:30 pm warm ups.

More information is available on the speedway website at or the face book page for the track.


Rice Lake Speedway

Rice Lake wI

August 24, 2019

WISSOTA Modifieds

20 lap Feature – Mike Anderson(Jim Falls), Kevin Adams(Cameron), Jason Gross(Osceola), Matt Leer(Bruce), Mark Hanson(Chippewa Falls), Danny Vang(Deerwood MN), Sam Fankhauser(Rice Lake), Dan Kingsley(Superior), Kyle Helling(Rice Lake), Paul Harelstad(Bloomer), Dave Mayala, Scott Splittstoesser

8 lap Heat 1 – Adams, Leer, Vang, Fankhauser, Kingsley, Splittstoesser, Mayala
Heat 2 – Anderson, Gross, Hanson, Harelstad, Helling, Wayne Poteet

WISSOTA Super Stocks

20 lap Feature – Aaron Wilson(Eau Claire), Eric Olson(Ladysmith), Willie Johnsen Jr(Superior), Adam Soltis(Ladysmith), Mike Siewert(Cameron), Jim Harris(Menomonie), Austin Workman(Barron), Mickey Anderson(Barron), Jim Cimfl(Turtle Lake), Wayne Harris Jr(Bloomer), Austin Cappo

8 lap Heat 1 – Curt Myers(Cameron), Olson, Johnsen Jr, Wilson, J. Harris, Siewert, Cappo
Heat 2 – Harris Jr, Cimfl, Soltis, Workman, Josh Bach(Barron), Anderson

WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds

15 lap Feature – Kevin Adams(Cameron), Shane Halopka(Greenwood), Joe Chaplin Jr(Cameron), Calvin Iverson(Eleva), Travis Anderson(Colfax), Kyle Johnson(Black River Falls), Kenny Kincaid(Shell Lake), James Kannegiesser(Boyceville), Jimmy Latvala(Solon Springs), Jonny Marsh(Rice Lake), Fran Hanson, Duane Halverson, Gavin Olson, Craig Elliott, Tim Borgeson, Josh Wahlstrom

8 lap Heat 1 – Adams, Iverson, Anderson, Hanson(Almena), Kannegiesser, Halvorson
Heat 2 – Latvala, Kincaid, Denny Cutsforth(Rice Lake), Johnson, Elliott(Hillsdale), Aric Lindberg
Heat 3 – Chaplin Jr, Wahlstrom(Rice Lake), Halopka, Borgeson(New Richmond), Marsh, Olson

WISSOTA Street Stocks

15 lap Feature – Hunter VanGilder(Rice Lake), Cody Kummer(Medford), Shawn Amundson(Rice Lake), Jay Kesan(Weyerhaeuser), Zach Beaulieu(Chetek), Kolby Kiehl(Barron), Hunter Anderson(Phillips), Parker Anderson(Phillips), C.J. Wagner(Rice Lake), Joe Chaplin Jr(Cameron), Will Fisher, Ron Hanestad, Travis Loew, Bob Wahlstrom

8 lap Heat 1 – Amundson, P. Anderson, Kiehl, Wagner, Loew(Barron), Hanestad, Jason Havel, Andrew Hanson
Heat 2 – Kummer, VanGilder, H. Anderson, Wahlstrom(Chetek), Beaulieu, Chaplin Jr, Fisher, Kesan

WISSOTA Pure Stocks

12 lap Feature – Cody Cimfl(Chetek), Bob Thompson(Cameron), George Richards(Mondovi), Jay Folz(Cameron), Mike Huebner Sr(Cumberland), Mike Roth(Deerwood MN), Jeremy Cash(Duluth MN), Ryan Clausen(Barron), Austin Fencl(Bruce), Mike Grover(Chetek), Ryan Lindenfelser, Mike Holmstrom, Terry Kemp, Leonard Osterberg Jr, Charlie Pitcavage

8 lap Heat – Cash, Richards, Cimfl, Grover, Clausen, Fencl, Lindenfelser, Kemp
Heat 2 – Thompson, Roth, Folz, Huebner Sr, Holmstrom(Rice Lake), Pitcavage, Osterberg Jr.