Auto racing: Hughes back on track, back on top at WMDTC

SPRING VALLEY — Jason Hughes wasn't pleased with his finish in Thursday night's opening round of the fifth annual World Modified Dirt Track Championship.

SPRING VALLEY — Jason Hughes wasn't pleased with his finish in Thursday night's opening round of the fifth annual World Modified Dirt Track Championship.

So the veteran Modified driver from Watts, Okla., decided to go back into the "Deer Creek Speedway" section of his notebook.

"Things went a lot better for us (Friday)," Hughes said. "(Thursday) night we weren't quite fast enough, so we went back to the stuff we run well here."

Hughes, who won the WMDTC at Deer Creek in 2013 and has won multiple Featherlite Fall Jamboree titles at the track, started Friday's 30-lap A Main on the pole. He led all but five laps and skillfully weaved his way through lapped traffic to beat defending WMDTC champion Rodney Sanders to the checkered flag by nearly a half-straightaway.

"I could see Rodney down there, so I knew it'd be tough," Hughes said of the waning laps of the race. "I knew it'd be tough, but I knew he'd race us clean, so I knew it'd be a fun race. I'm ready to get things rolling (today)."


Drivers accumulated points over the first two days of the WMDTC event through time trials, heat races, B Mains and A Mains. The top 12 drivers in total points through the first two days will be locked into tonight's A Main. The remaining 50-plus drivers will attempt to race their way in through a series of Mains today, beginning at 6 p.m.

Tonight's A Main will be split into two segments. The first segment will go 25 laps with the winner earning $5,000. The lineup for the second segment, set for 40 laps, will be determined by the finish of the first segment. The winner of the second segment earns $15,000 and the WMDTC championship.

"I liked it the old way, running 100 laps," Hughes said of the format used for the first four WMDTC A Mains. "We've run our cars to death this weekend. I'd rather just get out there and go 100."

Sanders, who won the WMDTC last year and is the two-time defending United States Modified Touring Series champion, has also earned an automatic bid to tonight's A Main. He finished third in Thursday's A Main and was the runner-up to Hughes on Friday.

"Jason went through those lapped cars really good," Sanders said. "I thought maybe I could get by a few of them a little better, but ... we should have a pretty good car and starting spot (tonight)."

Mitch Hovden won the USRA Stock Cars race and Deer Creek track points leader Dustin Scott captured the Wissota Midwest Modifieds feature.

"We like the track when it gets slick like this," Scott said. "We tend to shine when the track is like this. Hopefully we can win another one (today)."




Time Trials

Group 1— 1. Rodney Sanders (Happy, Texas) 15.830; 2. Landon Atkinson (Little Falls) 16.034; 3. Josh Angst (Winona)16.381; 4. Jason Cummins (New Richland) 16.483; 5. Matt Dotson (Hallsville, Mo.) 16.634; 6. Les Duellman (Winona)16.641; 7. Brad Dierks (Clarence, Iowa) 16.511; 8. Craig Shaw (Dexter)16.699; 9. Travis Saurer (Elizabeth, Minn.) 17.101.

Group 2— 1. Jason Hughes (Watts, Okla.) 15.948; 2. Keith Foss (Winona) 16.146; 3. Zack VanderBeek (New Sharon, Iowa) 16.183; 4. Craig Thatcher (Knapp, Wis.) 16.257; 5. Cory Crapser (Chippewa Falls, Wis.) 16.294; 6. Kenny Gaddis (Hallsville, Texas) 16.336; 7. Kelly Shryock (Fertile, Iowa) 16.464; 8. Bill Byholm (Glidden, Wis.) 16.707; 9. Cody Bauman (Eureka, Ill.) 16.868.

Group 3— 1. Brandon Davis (Medford) 16.056; 2. Casey Arneson (Fargo, N.D.)16.139; 3. Derek Ramirez (Woodward, Okla.) 16.193; 4. Bob Gierke (Westport) 16.484; 5. Stormy Scott (Las Cruces, N.M.) 16.677; 6. Tommy Myer (Blooming Prairie) 16.685; 7. Dwaine Hanson (Lakefield) 16.807; 8. Dagan Heim (Rosemount) 16.970; 9. Tim Thomas (West Fargo, N.D.)17.038.

Group 4— 1. Lucas Schott (Chatfield) 16.176; 2. Dan Ebert (Lake Shore) 16.231; 3. Jesse Sobbing (Malvern, Iowa) 16.313; 4. Bobby Malchus (Red Oak, Texas) 16.413; 5. Brock Bauman (Eureka, Ill.) 16.529; 6. Austin Arneson (Fargo, N.D.) 16.598; 7. Joel Alberts (Mantorville) 16.733; 8. Steve Miller (Rosanky, Texas) 16.741; 9. Darwyn Karau (Kasson) 17.081.

Group 5— 1. Steve Whiteaker Jr. (Corpus Christi, Texas) 16.234; 2. Tommy Weder Jr. (Woodward, Okla.) 16.393; 3. Brandon Hare (Elma, Iowa) 16.677; 4. Ben Kates (Tonganoxie, Kan.) 16.695; 5. Corey Dripps (Waterloo, Iowa) 16.728; 6. Todd Stinehart (Waseca) 16.822; 7. David Schuster (Waterville) 16.884; 8. Brian Albrecht (Winona) 17.094; 9. Troy Girolamo (Williston, N.D.) 17.145.

Group 6— 1. Brent Larson (Lake Elmo) 16.092; 2. Steve Wetzstein (West Concord) 16.224; 3. Nick Stroupe (Iron Station, N.C.) 16.337; 4. Eric Pember (Pittsville, Wis.) 16.345; 5. Johnny Scott (Las Cruces, N.M.) 16.434; 6. Joey Jensen (Harris) 16.615; 7. Greg Jensen (Albert Lea) 17.176; 8. Ted Marrs (Bethel) 17.500.


Group 7— 1. Jacob Bleess (Chatfield) 16.093; 2. Terry Phillips (Springfield, Mo.) 16.176; 3. Jason Miller (Osceola, Wis.) 16.497; 4. Joe Horgdal (Kasson) 16.677; 5. Pat Graham (Ames, Iowa) 16.758; 6. Josh Beckham (Choudrant, La.) 16.791; 7. Bill Clemens (Chatfield) 17.005; 8. Bob Sammann (Winona) 17.202.

Heat winners— Dierks, Hughes, Davis, Ebert, Kates, J. Scott, Phillips.

B Main 1 (top 5 transfer to 'A')— Foss, VanderBeek, Wetzstein, Atkinson, Duellman. B Main 2 (top 5 transfer to 'A')— Cummins, Weder, Myer, Ramirez, Stroupe. B Main 3 (top 5 transfer to 'A')— Sobbing, Shryock, Malchus, Angst, Pember.

A Main— 1. Hughes, 2. Sanders, 3. Davis, 4. Dierks, 5. Ebert, 6. Phillips, 7. Bleess, 8. J. Scott, 9. Larson, 10. Schott, 11. S. Scott, 12. Thatcher, 13. VanderBeek, 14. Foss, 15. J. Jensen, 16. Shryock, 17. Ramirez, 18. Weder, 19. Wetzstein, 20. Stroupe, 21. Myer, 22. Kates, 23. Atkinson, 24. Angst, 25. Duellman, 26. Stinehart, 27. Arneson, 28. Whiteaker, 29. Cummins.


A Main — 1. Mitch Hovden, 2. Shawn Peter, 3. Tom Schmitt, 4. Kyle Falck, 5. Kevin Donlan, 6. Dillon Anderson, 7. Lynn Panos, 8. Todd Staley, 9. Phillip Wernert, 10. Casey Sebastian, 11. Danny Sacquitne, 12. Larry Blickenderfer.

Heat winners— Peter, Hovden.



A Main — 1. Dustin Scott, 2. Mike Truscott, 3. Cory Crapser, 4. Jason Born, 5. Bill Byholm, 6. Travis Saurer, 7. David Baxter, 8. Ryan Goergen, 9. Jeremy Misgen, 10. Garrit Wytaske, 11. Josh Crary, 12. Billy Steinberg, 13. Jimmy Patzner, 14. Jake Stark, 15. Jeff McDonald, 16. Josh Ihlenfeld, 17. Brad Sievers, 18. Don Shaffer, 19. Tammy Soma Clark, 20. Tyron Friese, 21. Jared Boumeester, 22. Eric Gadach, 23. Jason Haugerud, 24. Ryan Wetzstein.

Heat winners— Saurer, Scott, Born.

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