by Tana Robinson
Marketing & PR Director
Some 91 cars were on hand last Friday, May 11, to entertain another stellar crowd. It was a perfect day and night for racing as clear skies greeted fans, drivers, and crew.
Defending champion Chad Brachmann of Sanborn captured the win aboard the 30-lap Mighty Taco Modified main. Piloting his Mighty Taco/FindItQuick.com-sponsored No. 3, Brachmann took the lead away from Boyd MacTavish on lap nine and quickly established himself as the man to beat.
MacTavish had led to that point. Brachmann would hold onto the lead position with Pete Bicknell giving chase. A late race caution made things interesting as Bicknell looked to the inside. It was all for naught as Brachmann took the win followed by "Mr. Smallblock," Danny Johnson, Jon Miller and Ricky Richner.
A total of 31 cars signed in pit side with 25 taking the green aboard the main event. MacTavish set the early pace prior to losing the top spot to Brachmann.
A scary moment occurred for all on lap 13 as a scramble in turn four collected the cars of Tim Currier, Todd Burley, Tom Flannigan, Scott Kerwin and Phil Vigneri. Almost at the same time, contact up front sent Chuck Hossfeld flipping into the front stretch moat. Hossfeld emerged unharmed but the same could not be said for his racer. The remainder of the event ran clean and green with Brachmann taking the win.
Sandy Pembleton captured the win aboard the 25-lap Original Pizza Logs Sportsman main. Pembleton took command at the drop of the green from his pole position starting spot and never looked back. While Kevin Wills gave chase early on, Pembleton was not to be denied as he collected his first checkered of the year. A great race ensued in the closing laps as defending champion Don Spatorico made a charge to the front. Allan Wills took the second position followed by Spatorico, Jesse Cotriss and Greg Martin.
Jake Stefanski notched his first win of the season aboard the 20-lap Ki-Po Chevrolet Streetstock feature main. Stefanski took the lead away from defending champion Derrick Borkenhagen on lap 13 and never looked back. Borkenhagen bobbled in turn four opening up the inside lane. That was all Stefanski needed as he filled the slot and took the lead. Stefanski took the win over Borkenhagen, Jaren Israel, Alex Morris and Mike Greenawalt.
Dick Wilkinson of Lewiston took top honors aboard the Bobcat of Buffalo Fireball feature main. Wilkinson will go down as one of the oldest - if not the oldest - feature winners at the Big R. The 73 year old took the lead away from Gary Watier Jr. on lap six and maintained the top spot through the final half of the race. Watier held on for second followed by Marika Morris, Chris Leone and Gerry Gipp. Wilkinson represents the Lewiston No. 1 fire hall.
Johnston's Restaurant summary
•Mighty Taco Modified Feature Finish - Chad Brachmann, Pete Bicknell, Danny Johnson, Jon Miller, Ricky Richner, Robbie Krull, Brian Sage, Mat Williamson, Rich Vinson, Tommy Flannagan, Ryan Susice, Scott Just, Scott Kerwin, Todd Burley, Tim Jones, Jeff McGinnis, Erick Rudolph, Sam Crogan, Tim Currier, Boyd MacTavish, Mike Bowman, Chuck Hossfeld, Phil Vigneri, Justin Wright and John Smith. Heat Winners - Brian Sage, Tim Currier, and Jon Miller. Mighty Taco Modified B Main - Anthony Rizzardo.
•Original Pizza Logs Sportsman Feature Finish - Sandy Pembleton, Allan Wills, Don Spatorico, Jesse Cotriss, Greg Martin, Justin Sharp, Scott Krull, Mike Williams, James Henry, Brett Martin, Don Barnes, Andy Smith, Matt Farnham, Chris Burek, Gordon Hermanson, Jipp Ortiz, Steve Miller, Nate Reynolds and Kevin Wills. Heat Winners (sponsored by FindItQuick.com) - Nate Reynolds and Allan Wills.
•Ki-Po Chevrolet Streetstock Feature Finish - Jake Stefanski, Derrick Borkenhagen, Jaren Israel, Alex Morris, Mike Greenawalt, Jason Meyer, Pat Dell, Jesse Johnston, Cliff Gregg III, Webb Nashwinter, Tim Hall, Neil Pfak, Darrell Borkenhagen, Jamie Woods, Andrew Neiderhoffer, Colton Gilbert, Charles Harvey, Cliff Brucker, Randy Zimmerman, Mike Short, Ryan Stephenson, Kyle Wendt and Chad Livermore. Heat Winners - Pat Dell and Kyle Wendt.
•Bobcat Of Buffalo Fireball Feature Finish - Dick Wilkinson, Gary Watier Jr., Marika Morris, Chris Leone, Gerry Gipp, Zach Sam, Jim Stone, Steve Matson, Jon Stoelting, Chris Lederhouse, Anthony Hermanson, Dave Dussault, Don Spillman and Ashley Harbison. Heat Winners - Gary Watier Jr. and Steve Matson.
Pit notes: Upcoming at the Big R: Battle at the Border - July 3 - $5,000 to win Mod 75, and 28th Alex Friesen Summer Nationals. - Aug. 17, $10,000 to win Mod 100. For more, visit www.ransomvillespeedway.com.