Lake Odessa, MI – It was a pleasant sunny afternoon for the Great Lakes Super Sprints start of the 2019 season. The pits were still drying out from the 3 ½ inches of rain that cancelled last weeks scheduled opener, but the track was looking great and everyone was itching to get the show started!
At the drivers meeting we had 37 drivers representing Ohio, Indiana, Florida, Canada and Michigan! The nights events were explained and we would be single car qualifying, running 4 heats, 2 B-Mains and starting 24 cars in the A Main Feature.
I-96 Speedway track prep was awesome as the 2018 Series Champion, Dustin Daggett (Portland, MI) hit the track first for his qualifying run, after pulling the #1 spot. At the end of qualifying, visiting 3 time NASCAR Cup Series champion, Tony Stewart (Columbus, IN) was fast qualifier turning a 14.098 second lap around the big 4/10ths of a mile track. Ryan Ruhl (Coldwater, MI) was 2nd quick turning a 14.208 second lap with Phil Gressman (Helena, OH) being 3rd quick with a 14.232 second lap. Zane DeVault (Plymouth, IN) and Dylan Westbrook (Ontario, CA) rounded out the top 5 with laps of 14.277 and 14.305 respectively.
In the Kistler Engines and Racing Parts Heat 1, Gregg Dalman (Bellevue, MI), the pole setter, brings the group of 10 cars around to kick off the first race of the season! Daggett quickly jumps out front and in a very short 112 seconds, green flag to checker the race is over and Daggett wins. Westbrook, DeVault and Ayrton Olson (Indianapolis, IN) rounded out the top 4, transferring to the A-Main.
Dan McCarron (Britton, MI) brings out the Campbell Performance Heat 2. With the first start called back, the second start is clean and everyone quickly finds their groove. Then suddenly the track is under a red flag as visiting Dan Nanticoke (Ohsweken, CN) comes to rest on his side in the middle of turns 3 and 4, after connecting with an infield tire and flipping twice. With driver safe and car removed, the race continued. Robbie Price (Cobble Hill, BC) runs away with the win, with Stewart, Jared Lamberson (Parma, MI) and McCarron rounding out the top 4 transfer spots.
The Needmethanol.com Heat 3 is led out by our 2018 Rookie of the year, Conner Morrell (Brandenton, FL). With Jay Steinbach (Hudsonville, MI) leading, in lap 6, Eli Lakin (Buchanan, MI) got low and with some glare from the setting sun, made contact with an infield tire and ended up on his side. As the race resumes, Steinbach wins with Max Stambaugh (Elida, OH), Ricky Peterson (Rawson, OH) and rookie Garrett Suanders (Lakeville, IN) take the top 4 transfer spots.
Chase Ridenour (Perry, MI), the GLSS 2016 Champion, leads the Perfit/Engine Pro Heat 4 onto the track. As the green flag flies and the cars charge into turn 1, Gressman, Ridenour and 2017 Champion Jared Horstman(Cloverdale, OH) are 3 wide. Gressman tries to squeeze down the bottom under both, when he clips the infield tire and snaps his front axle. Joel Hummel (Nashville, MI) came to rest at the exit of turn 2 after losing his front left wheel. With Gressman and Hummel out, Ridenour jumps out front on the restart and is battling Horstman the whole way. Getting a little gap as he takes the white flag, Ridenour is cruising the cushion in turns 1 and 2 when he loses all power and goes off the track. On the restart, Horstman leads the field across the finish line with Ruhl, Brad Lamberson (Parma, MI) and Andy Chehowski (Coldwater, MI) transferring into the A-Main.
In the Beacon & Bridge B Main, the battle was on quick as the final 10 cars were competing for the 4 transfer spots. Dalman punched his ticket winning the B&B B Main, with RJ Reynolds (Dover, OH), Danny Sams III (Northport, FL) and his teammate, Morrell moving on to the main event.
The Addvance Heating and Cooling B-Main rolled out with Gressman’s car repaired and Ridenour’s fuel line issue fixed. Gressman and Ridenour pulled out and punched their tickets into the A-main the hard way and Jason Blonde (Litchfield, MI) and Trevor Berry (Clio, MI) securing the final two spots into the 24 field main event.
The air was crisp by the time the 4-wide parade lap was taken by the cars in the A-Main. With the initial start called back, we got a clean start and wow, what a race! Steinbach gets by Westbrook and leads the field roaring behind him! In the 4th lap, Westbrook gets by Steinbach for the lead. By the 12th lap Stewart had moved up from 6th and finally shot past Westbrook for the lead.
In the 17th lap, with 8 laps to go, the first caution came out. With some technical difficulties in the tower, the line up was finally set. With the long caution, conditions and the cars changed and the field struggled to get going again. In the next 2 laps we had 2 red flags and a yellow. We lost Dalman, who came to rest in the middle of the front stretch, we lost Morrell and Reynolds after they got together in the bottom of 1 and 2 and we lost Daggett; as the leading cars came out of turn 4 in a single file restart, one of the front cars got loose forcing the chasing cars to check up in the front stretch and Daggett ended up in the air after making contact with Ridenour’s right rear tire and banging down the front wall coming to rest on his side.
With only 6 laps to go, we get a good start and Stewart holds off a charging Horstman for the victory. Westbrook remained in the hunt all night and took 3rd for his efforts. Stambaugh and Peterson rounded out the top 5 cars. Sams was our Engler Hard Charger for the night, starting 21st and finishing 10th. It was a great night of racing and the drivers appreciate the fans sticking out the cold evening air for us to get the race in! You can see highlights on our Facebook page or go to Speedshift tv for highlights and the full race.
Next weekend, May 17th and May 18th we will be back for a double header weekend at I-96 Speedway as the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series rolls into town for a co-sanctioned weekend of racing. Friday night the American Ethanol Modified Series will be racing with the winged sprints and Saturday will be an All Sprint night with the Michigan Traditional Sprints on hand for a non-wing and winged night of racing!
We at Great Lakes Super Sprints thank the drivers and teams that work hard every week to keep their cars working and running to help us put on a show. We also would like to thank all the tracks that we race at and work with for your support as well as all their fans for coming out and cheering us on when we visit!
We’d like to ask you to also support our sponsors that help us make this possible. Be sure to go to our website for all our current standings www.greatlakessupersprints.com and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Environmental Waste & Recovery, Inc – www.needavactruck.com
Specialty Fuels & Recovery – www.needmethanol.com
Beacon & Bridge Markets – www.beaconandbridge.com
Addvance Heating and Cooling – 989-205-0369
Hoosier Mid-West – www.racetires.com
Engler Machine and Tool – www.englermachine.com
Kistler Engines & Kistler Racing Parts – www.kistlerracing.com
Campbell Performance – 419-302-0507
Perfit/Engine Pro – www.engineproparts.com
RESULTS FROM FRIDAY, MAY 10, 2019
Qualifying: 1. 14 – Tony Stewart, 14.098; 2. 16 – Ryan Ruhl, 14.208, 3. 7C – Phil Gressman, 14.232; 4. 16C – Zane DeVault, 14.277; 5. 47X – Dylan Westbrook, 14.305; 6. 85 – Dustin Daggett, 14.351; 7. 22P – Robbie Price, 14.434; 8. 49T – Gregg Dalman, 14.487; 9. 17 – Jared Horstman, 14.546; 10. 71 – Ayrton Olson, 14.624; 11. 17M – Max Stambaugh, 14.627; 12. 27X – Jared Lamberson, 14.630; 13. 22M – Dan McCarron, 14.675; 14. 24 – Kobe Allison, 14.702; 15. 24D – Danny Sams, 14.740; 16. 16B – Ricky Peterson, 14.747; 17. 77 – Andrew Scheid, 14.811; 18. 10 – Jason Blonde, 14.833; 19. 11R – Chase Ridenour, 14.850; 20. 15 – Dan Nanticoke, 14.883; 21. 10S – Jay Steinebach, 14.891; 22. 84 – Kyle Poortenga, 14.899; 23. 19J – Linden Jones, 14.938; 24. 28M – Conner Morrell, 14.992; 25. 18J – R.J. Jacobs, 15.025; 26. 20A – Andy Chehowski, 15.239; 27. 70 – Eli Lakin, 15.323; 28. 16W – Garrett Saunders, 15.325; 29. 91L – Tyler Fitzpatrick, 15.342; 30. 18 – Josh Shantz, 15.583; 31. 18S – Michael Summers, 15.812; 32. 8 – Justin Ward, 15.825; 33. 54 – Joel Hummel, 17.241. 34. 7B – Trevor Berry, NT; 35: 2T – Ralph Brakenberry, NT, 36. 23 – Joe Geibe, NT, 37. 27 – Brad Lamberson, NT.
Kistler Engines & Racing Parts #1 (8 Laps): 1. 85 – Dustin Daggett, 2. 47X – Dylan Westbrook, 3. 16C – Zane DeVault, 4. 71 – Ayrton Olson, 5. 49T – Gregg Dalman, 6. 24D – Danny Sams, 7. 24 – Kobe Allison, 8. 77 – Andrew Scheid, 9. 19J – Linden Jones, 10. 18 – Josh Shantz.
Campbell Performance #2 (8 Laps): 1. 21P – Robbie Price, 2. 14 – Tony Stewart, 3. 27X – Jared Lamberson, 4. 22M – Dan McCarron, 5. 84 – Kyle Poortenga, 6. 10 – Jason Blonde, 7. 91L – Tyler Fitzpatrick, 8. 7B – Trevor Berry, 9. 15 – Dan Nanticoke.
Needmethanol.com #3 (8 Laps): 1. 10S – Jay Steinebach, 2. 17M – Max Stambaugh, 3. 16B – Ricky Perterson, 4. 16W – Garrett Saunders, 5. 18J – R.J. Jacobs, 6. 28M – Connor Morrell, 7. 70 – Eli Lakin, 8. 8 – Justin Ward.
Perfit/Engine Pro #4 (8 Laps): 1. 17 – Jared Horstman, 2. 16 – Ryan Ruhl, 3. 27 – Brad Lamberson, 4. 20A – Andy Chehowski, 5. 18S – Michael Summers, 6. 11R – Chase Ridenour, 7. 54 – Joel Hummel, 8. 7C – Phil Gressman,
Beacon & Bridge Market B-Main #1 (12 Laps): 1. 49T – Gregg Dalman, 2. 19J – R.J. Jacobs, 3. 24D -Danny Dams, 4. 28M – Conner Morrell, 5. 24 – Kobe Allison, 6. 18 – Josh Schantz, 7. 19J – Linden Jones, 8. 8 – Justin Ward, 9. 77 – Andrew Scheid.
Addvanced Heating & Cooling B-Main #2 (12 Laps): 1. 7C – Phil Gresssman, 2. 11R – Chase Ridenour, 3. 10 – Jason Blonde, 4. 7B – Trevor Berry, 5. 84 – Kyle Poortenga, 6. 18S – Michael Summers, 7. 91L – Tyler Fitzpatrick.
A-Main (25 Laps): 1. 14 – Tony Stweart, 2. 17 – Jared Horstman, 3. 47X – Dylan Westbrook, 4. 17M – Max Stambaugh, 5. 16B – Ricky Peterson, 6. 16C – Zane DeVault, 7. 21 – Robbie Price, 8. 16 – Ryan Ruhl, 9. 7C – Phil Gressman, 10. 4D – Danny Sams, 11. 11R – Chase Ridenour, 12. 22M – Dan McCarron, 13. 71 – Ayrton Olson, 14. 10S – Jay Steinebach, 15. 7B – Trevor Berry, 16. 16W – Garrett Saunders, 17. 27X – Jared Lamberson, 18. 49T – Gregg Dalman, 19. 85 – Dustin Dagget, 20. 27 – Brad Lamberson, 21. 28M – Connor Morrell, 22. 18J – R.J. Jacobs, 23. 10 – Jason Blonde, 24. 20A – Andy Chehowski.