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Limited Late Model Grudge Race @ I-37 Speedway by R&M Promotions, 5/15/19

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Limited Late Model Grudge Race @ I-37 Speedway by R&M Promotions, 5/15/19

By JM Hallas


Pleasanton, TX.,(June, 15th, 2019) Saturday night was the first of four class 'Grudge Races' on the ¼ mile, semi-banked, dirt track near San Antonio. The four drivers, selected by fan vote, went at it with the winner going on to the final match up between the class winners. Tonight it was the Limited Late Models showdown between Tommy Grimes, Frank Okruhlik, Howie Marcx and Jason Kelly.


In the coming weeks the other matches will be run to determine the final shootout slate of drivers. June 29th the Sport Modifieds will have their four fan favorites in action to see who moves on to the finals. The Street Stocks and IMCA Modifieds are scheduled for July.


With the Street Stocks and Go-Karts off tonight the race card featured the IMCA Modifieds, Sport Modifieds, Limited Late Models, Pure Stocks and Sport Compacts.


Green for Green

Defending track champ, Rick Green(Liberty Hill) took home the IMCA Modified feature win on a tricky track. The first half of the scheduled 20 lapper saw 7 cautions in six completed laps due to spins and an opening lap crash that saw Marlin Samford get turned from the pole collecting his son, James Samford and Greg Dinsmore


Justin Delgado was able to lead the first lap giving way to Landon Bednarz on lap 2. Patiently working through the melees, Green made his way up to pressure Bednarz for the lead. Green got under Bednarz to take the point on lap 6 with the race now reduced to 15-laps on time.


The final half saw no more issues with Green holding off Dillon Tindall while Bednarz and Jamie Campbell, both recovering from spins, had a spirited battle swapping fourth. Coming to the checkers it was Green in the Green Construction, Nate Mare Wraps, Chris Carroll Construction, crate powered, 2018 BMS Chassis taking the win by a handful of car lengths.



It seemed like I passed the 16 car four times with all those cautions,” exclaimed Green. “I didn't realize all those people were having so much trouble with turns 3-4. They said I was about the only one that didn't spin out. Even when I was coming to the checkers the 151 spun in front of me. I was thinking you've got to be kidding me. I avoided him and it's all good.”


I was just on cruise control once I got the lead. I wasn't feeling any pressure and was pretty sure the line I was running was the one that was the best, for me. I didn't do a lot of changes between the heat and feature for the difference in the track and it looks like no else did either. I did a minor change and just tip-toed through the corners and got going on the straightaways pretty good.”


I was disciplined enough with my experience to not get on the throttle hard. I could hear the other guys spinning the tires when I got beside them. With the crate motor now it's more about keeping your momentum up. That's why you see a lot more cautions, people are just staying in the gas. I've lost a few races this year because I didn't just go for it right away. I've been letting it sort itself out.”


Simpson Race Products IMCA Modifieds

82 Rick Green, 86 Dillon Tindall, 137 Bill Pittaway, 29 Jamie Campbell, 16 Landon Bednarz, 151 Chris Jones, 31 Marlin Samford, 27 Justin Delgado, 6b Ellis Tracy, 2j James Samford, 8g Greg Dinsmore


IMCA Modified heats

Heat 1; 86 Dillon Tindall, 137 Bill Pittaway, 27 Justin Delgado, 6b Ellis Tracy, 8g Greg Dinsmore, 2j James Samford


Heat 2; 29 Jamie Campbell, 82 Rick Green, 16 Landon Bednarz, 31m Marlin Samford, 151 Chris Jones


Torres Snake Charmer in Sport Modifieds

For a guy being deathly afraid of snakes, Johnny Torres(La Vernia) has been finding snakes skins inside the shop and his car. In both cases he's turned that into a weekend win at the track. Tonight J. Torres went flag to flag for the victory in the Sport Modified 20-lap feature.


Frank Okruhlik led into turn 1 at the start, but it was J. Torres off turn 2 getting the top spot. Okruhlik fell in line behind J. Torres with Allen Torres, Trent Beaver and Rusty Head in tow. Beaver and A. Torres then began a side by side battle for third while Marcus Mikulencak worked his way up getting fifth from Talon Minten.


Mikulencak continued his march forward taking fourth from A. Torres. At halfway it was J. Torres, pulling away, Okruhlik, Beaver, Mikulencak and A. Torres in the top five. Mikulencak would pick off third when Beaver did a half spin, but continue.


As the final laps clicked off J. Torres continued to increase his margin over Okruhlik, who had Mikulencak closing. As the white was shown J. Torres had a full straightaway lead in his Scott Ball Racing, Alamo Hot Rod Parts, Sundowner Diesel Performance, Batek & Robinson Attorneys at Law, All in Designs, Carroll Construction, Mission Auto Parts, 8T1 Construction, Swenson Racing Shocks, Fletchers Race Engines, IRP Chassis, easily taking the win.


Running so early in the night I was pretty unsure of what changes to make to the car,” said Torres. So I went kind of in the middle of what I normally do for dry to tacky and the car was great.”


I really want to thank Brandy for putting up with all the time I spend at the shop, then coming out here and getting her hands dirty.”

There's unconfirmed rumors that Brandy is also in charge of snake removal.


Swenson Racing Products Sport Modifieds

66 Johnny Torres, 08 Frank Okruhlik, 03 Marcus Mikulencak, 14 Trent Beaver, 94 Allen Torres, 55 Rusty Head, 7d Derrick Gonzalez, 51 Jeremy Hernandez, 2 Talon Minten, 11t Tom Grothues---dns


Sport Modified heats

Heat 1; 11t Tom Grothues, 08 Frank Okruhlik, 55 Rusty Head, 14 Trent Beaver, 51 Jeremy Hernandez


Heat 2; 66 Johnny Torres, 94 Allen Torres, 2 Talon Minten, 03 Marcus Mikulencak, 7d Derrick Gonzalez


Okruhlik Outlasts Field for Limited Late Model Tally

Rebounding from a spin and loss in the Grudge Race, Frank Okruhlik(San Antonio) held off a hard charging Tommy Grimes for the 20-lap Limited Late Model win. On green, Grimes got the jump into turn 1, but Okruhlik ducked low off torn 4 to get the lead with Grimes on his tail.


Red was shown on lap 1 when Jeremy Hernandez and Howie Marcx made contact sending both over the turn 2 hill. Both were alright, but done for the night. Back to green Okruhlik and Grimes took off leaving Jason Kelly, John Kelly sr. and Jacob Crow battling for third. The top five at halfway were Okruhlik, Grimes, Ja. Kelly, Jo. Kelly and Crow.


While battling for third with Ja. Kelly, Jo. Kelly spun setting up a late caution. Grimes stayed hooked to Okruhliks bumper on green, but Okruhlik would be able to inch away in the finals lap for the win the Henderson Motorsports, Mission Racing, Late Model.


Running two classes gives me some help,” explained Okruhlik. “There's really not much I can use going from a Late Model to a Sport Modified. It just gives me an idea what the track is doing. Usually the Late Models run early in the night, but it tonight it was different.”


Nogalitos Gear Limited Late Models

99 Frank Okruhlik, 22t Tommy Grimes, 57 Jason Kelly, 8 Jacob Crow, 22p Michale Pesek, 18 Shane Moore, 57sr John Kelly sr., 42 Ron Sprayue, 3 Sammy Smith, 6p Jeremy Hernandez, 13 Howie Marcx, 43 Aaron Leddy---dns


Grimes Grabs Grudge Shootout

At the start of the 8-lap shootout Grimes and Okruhlik stayed door to door through turns 1-2 and down the back stretch. Going into turn 3 Okruhlik would loop it for a caution. Back under green Okruhlik worked his way back up but could not catch Grimes in the Tracy Rail Service, Howell Crane & Rigging, All in Designs, Longs Race Engines, Shaw Chassis who would score the victory.


Limited Late Model Grudge Race

22t Tommy Grimes, 99 Frank Okruhlik, 57 Jason Kelly, 13 Howie Marcx


Limited Late Model heats

Heat 1; 22t Tommy Grimes, 99f Frank Okruhlik, 8 Jacob Crow, 13 Howie Marcx, 22p Michale Pesek, 3 Sammy Smith


Heat 2; 57 Jason Kelly, 6p Jeremy Hernandez, 57sr John Kelly sr., 18 Shane Moore, 43 Aaron Leddy, 42 Ron Sprayue---dns


Gaither Gathers First Pure Stock Pay Day

It's been a while since Dillon Gaither(Floresville) has found his way into victory lane from back in the Front Runner days. Tonight he shook the monkey off his back gabbing the long awaited Pure Stock feature win. Gaither worked his way up to get by Tryton Temple, then held off Allen Torres and John Heil to score the win


At the start of the 20-lap feature it was Dustin Hurley getting the lead chased by Riley Heil, Temple, Caitlin Leonard and George Quintanilla. Temple got past R. Heil bringing Leonard along to third before a caution slowed the pace. Once back to green Temple got along side Hurley taking over the point on lap 5.


After a spin by Jerry Miller the restart saw Leonard, Hurley and Gaither three wide for second with Gaither taking the spot. Using the top side, Torres was making moves forward getting around R. Heil and Hurley for fourth. Coming to halfway Gaither found an opening low to get the lead from Temple on lap 9.


At the crossed flags it was Gaither, Temple, Torres, Leonard and Hurley in the top five with John Heil now on the charge. J. Heil got by his daughter, Riley, then Hurley and Leonard for fourth. With five to go Torres took second from Temple as Gaither hit slower traffic. Torres got a good run, but couldn't get by while J. Heil took third from Temple.


A debris caution would set up a four lap shootout to the checkers that saw Gaither and Torres get away on green. J. Heil quickly joined the fight and was battling with Torres. This gave Gaither a little break as he took the checkers in his J&J Stucco & Masonry, No Limits Graphics, Dohogen Claim Services, Howie’s Lawn Service, Race on Texas, D & D Performance, Spreen Racing, Kruger Motorsports, Rachel Plant Picture Taker, Whestone Family, Dynamic Pro Shop, BMF Shocks & Chassis, Greg Hubbell Race Cars.


It feels good to finally be here doing an interview again.” replied Gaither. “It's been since 2010/2011 since I raced the Front Runners. It's good to get the monkey off my back. I watched the Modifieds and thought the top side might be the way to go. Once I got out there I could run the top for a while, but it just wasn't there. I restarted on the bottom and finally got by them and starting driving in my rhythm.”


It was tough to get through lapped traffic. Once I got I by them it was smooth sailing. Those lapped cars were hugging the bottom so I had to try to the top and middle. I didn't work out the way I planned it, but I finally got around them and got back to the bottom and started driving my own race. I didn't how far back Allen(Torres) and John Heil were, but I knew they'd be coming. I just had to keep my cool, run my line.”


At the start the top opened up like it did last race. I hopped up there and it worked for a little while. When it came down to that restart I rolled through the center of (turns) 1-2 real good on the bottom and got by Dustin Hurley. I was able to catch Tryton(Temple) I just tried to stay smooth on the bottom and worked by him. I knew that's where I needed to be. I just found the groove faster.”


All in Design Pure Stocks

5 Dillon Gaither, 41t John Heil, 94 Allen Torres, 99 Tryton Temple, 9c Caitlin Leonard, 30 Riley Heil, 36 George Quintanilla, m13 Jeremy Watson, 29 Katherine Keylich, 4d Dustin Hurley, 98 William Saunders, 63 Joe Dee Johnson, 22r Ronnie Sparks, 37w Austin Wernette, 15 William Cavender, 28 Chad Miller, 19 Daniel Miller, 75 Jerry Miller, 38 Sonny Kinneman, 20r Randall Rdyl---dntg


Pure Stock heats

Heat 1; 4d Dustin Hurley, 99 Tryton Temple , 98 William Saunders, m13 Jeremy Watson, 63 Joe Dee Johnson, 38r Sonny Kinneman, 94 Allen Torres


Heat 2; 30 Riley Heil, 5 Dillon Gaither, 41t John Heil, 75 Jerry Miller, 15 William Cavender, 20r Randall Rydl


Heat 3; 36 George Quintanilla, 9c Caitlin Leonard, 28 Chad Miller, 49k Katherine Keylich, 22r Ronnie Sparks, 19 Daniel Miller


Garner Garners Sport Compact Gold

A huge field of Sport Compacts saw a lot of action during the scheduled 20-lap feature. Eventually it was reduced to 15-laps on time and when the dust settled, literally and figuratively, it was defending track champ Jamie Garner taking the win coming up from his fourth row start.


It was Brandon McCall getting the early lead trailed by Michael Burris sr., Johnny Ervin, Kirk Ball and Justin Sitterle. Scott Lesher, Trevor Bettis and Garner moved up to fight with Sitterle for fifth. Garner kept picking them off getting by Ervin for third while Ball, Lesher and Bettis were three wide for fifth.


Burris sr. got a run on McCall for the lead and had just gotten past when the three wide fight stacked up on the front stretch sending Ball, and others, into the wall and negating the pass. Once back to green it was McCall, Burris sr. and Garner three wide for the lead, but Devin Tracy went over the turn 3 hill for a red.


When green waved again it was Garner and McCall side by side with Garner getting the advantage to lead lap 11. Garner was able to creep away while Burris sr., Colton Borlace and Kasey Krauss went three wide for fifth. At the checkers it was Garner in the Austin VeeDub, Pick-n-Pull, Krystal Ball Communication, Up Top Roofing, VW Sirocco unchallenged for the victory.


Brown Chevrolet Sport Compacts

33 Jamie Garner, 14 Brandon McCall, 44 Johnny Ervin, 18 Michael Burris sr., 93 Colton Borlace, 23 Kasey Krauss, 1 Ronnie Schoenfeldt, 29t George Compton, 01 Adolph Tracy, 5L Scott Lesher, 17 Dalton McDonald, 01g Adam Tracy, 6p John Hernandez, 75 Ethan Jenkins, 57 Trevor Bettis, 81 Michael Burris jr., 8 Devin Tracy, 25 Robert Fox, 38 Kirk Ball, 88 Justin Sitterle, 15 Devon Surritt


Sport Compact heats

Heat 1; 44 Johnny Ervin, 38 Kirk Ball, 15 Devon Surritt, 01g Adam Tracy, 93 Colton Borlace, 8 Devin Tracy, 29t George Compton


Heat 2; 14 Brandon McCall, 5L Scott Lesher, 33 Jamie Garner, 23 Kasey Krauss, 01 Adolph Tracy, 6p John Hernandez---dns


Heat 3; 18 Michael Burris sr., 88 Justin Sitterle, 57 Trevor Bettis, 1 Ronnie Schoenfeldt, 81 Michael Burris jr., 17 Dalton McDonald, 75 Ethan Jenkins



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