Stock Car Racing: Schilling breaks through for first career win
BARROWS—Lance Schilling has been driving his modified car for just three short years, and he broke through Saturday night, winning his first belt on WWE night in the 20-lap feature race at North Central Speedway.
It was Shilling's first career win and his first night racing at NCS in the 2018 season. All he had to do was hold off defending champion Shawn Fletcher in a two-lap race to the checkered flag after a caution flag.
"Shawn is not an easy guy to beat and we have been racing against him the last few years," Schilling said. "Knowing he is back there can make you a little nervous, but I kept telling myself I can be faster than him and I have been before so I just focused."
Schilling led Fletcher by a small margin after the first lap of the restart, but Fletcher caught him in turn two on the final lap. The two cars came together for a short time. Schilling came out of the contact with a small lead and kept that margin to the checkered flag.
"He was racing me hard and rubbing is racing," Schilling said of the contact in turn two. "He was respectful enough not to wreck me like some people would and we had a good finish and it was a lot of fun."
Fletcher started on row three and fell back early, but battled back to put himself in second place behind Schilling for the final run. With his second-place finish he is three points clear of Aaron Johnson in the season points chase.
"My strategy was to go where he wasn't, but wherever I went he was there," Fletcher said of his battle with Schilling.
Fletcher also competed in the Mod-4 class in a car that he owns, but that his daughter Drue normally drives. He had to "blow the dust off of the car," as it had been out of service for a while.
He finished fifth out of six cars competing in the heat race and started from row two in the 15-lap feature event. He got comfortable with the car and won the feature in front of a talented field of drivers including track champion Jerry Esler, who finished second, and third-place finisher Mitchell Hribar.
"I knew it was a good car, but I am a little rusty in it," Fletcher said. "After a few laps, I caught on to it and it was pretty good."
Jess Geesey finished fifth and holds a 22-point lead over Keith Roush.
Micro Sprints—Austin Letourneau won the 15-lap feature in a field of just three cars at the end of the race. Seven cars started the race, but four had to retire early in the first appearance of the season at NCS for the Micro Sprints.
Sport Compacts—Dustin Virkus picked up his class leading third win of the season over points leader Derek Stanoch and Peewee Kuhnau. Stanoch leads Kuhnau by 17 points in the points race.
Hobby Stocks—Tim Gonska returned to the winners podium for his fourth win of the season in a dominating feature race where he led for all 15 laps. Last week's winner, Tim Siercks, finished second and Joe Gonska notched the third spot. Tim Gonska holds a 21-point lead over Joe Gonska in the points race.
Sportsmods—Chris VanMil drove away from trouble in a hotly contested 15-lap Sportsmod feature for his second win of the season. Troy Jordan and Mark Martini battled behind VanMil coming into the final turn on the final lap. Jordan's car spun out and Martini was charged with the caution, putting Martini at the back of the pack in the final results. Jordan retained his second position behind VanMil.
The second place finish pushed Jordan's points lead to three over David Siercks.
SuperStocks—Dylan Nelson won his second race in as many weeks in the Super Stock feature race. Nelson started from row two in the eight car field.
James Trantina III finished second, and Jake Goetze secured the third spot.
Goetze holds a four-point lead over Nelson in the points race.
IMCA Sport Compacts:
Feature: 1-Dustin Virkus, 2-Derek Stanoch, 3-Peewee Kuhnau
Heat 1: 1-Peewee Kuhnau, 2-Devin Dustin-Flannigan, 3-Trista Pankratz
Heat 2: 1-Dustin Virkus, 2-Derek Stanoch, 3-Jenna Hagemann
IMCA Hobby Stocks:
Feature: 1-Tim Gonska, 2-Tim Siercks, 3-Joe Gonska
Heat 1: 1-Tom Anderson, 2-Chris Seidel, 3-Devin Larson
Heat 2: 1-Joe Gonska, 2-Tim Siercks, 3-Tim Gonska
NCS Mod 4s:
Feature: 1-Shawn Fletcher, 2-Jerry Esler, 3-Mitchell Hribar
Heat 1: 1-Gerry Nohner, 2-Jess Geesey, 3-Francis Hauber
Heat 2: 1-Mitchell Hribar, 2-Jerry Esler, 3-Joey Brown
IMCA Northern Sport Modifieds:
Feature: 1-Chris VanMil, 2-Troy Jordan, 3-Jake Hagemann
Heat 1: 1-Chris VanMil, 2-David Siercks, 3-Jacob Jordan
Heat 2: 1-Mark Martini, 2-Jake Hagemann, 3-Troy Jordan
NCS Super Stock:
Feature: 1-Dylan Nelson, 2-James Trantina III, 3-Jake Goetze
Heat 1: 1-Dylan Nelson, 2-James Trantina III, 3-Jake Goetze
Feature: 1-Lance Schilling, 2-Shawn Fletcher, 3-Justin Jones
Heat 1: 1-Shawn Fletcher, 2-Luke Hines, 3-Justin Jones
Heat 2: 1-Luke Schilling, 2-Aaron Johnson, 3-Seth Kramer
Feature: 1-Austin Letourneau, 2-Lucas Logue, 3-Jeff Watson
Heat 1: 1-Jeff Watson, 2-Jack Berger, 3-Austin Letourneau