Wheatland, Missouri (June 18, 2019) - Fresh off one of the most exciting double header weekends in recently memory, this Thursday and Friday the stars of the Lucas Oil MLRA will get back behind the wheel for another pair of $3,000 to win main events. Series point leader Will Vaught snagged his second win of the season last Friday night at the Beaver Dam Raceway in dominating fashion, while two-time series champ Chad Simpson, celebrated his first win as an owner/driver on Saturday at the Dubuque Fairgrounds Speedway.
Many of the Midwest top open late model teams are expected to be out in full force this Thursday night June 20th, for a special mid-week show at the Cresco Speedway in Cresco, IA. The historical fairgrounds track was originally built as a 1/2 to 5/8-mile horse racing facility, before being re-configured to its current 4/10th mile high banked clay oval layout in 2001.
Thursday's event will mark the sixth new venue on the 2019 schedule for the MLRA Series and the only Late Model event on the schedule this season at the "Mighty Howard County Fairgrounds." Tom Barnes who serves as the Executive Secretary at the facility is excited to be bringing back open Late Model racing for the first time since 2012, when Jason Rauen claimed victory in a Corn Belt Clash sanctioned event."
"There's a lot of late model fans in this area," commented Barnes. "Late Models have been a part of this area for many many years going back to the 50's and 60's. We have typically gotten into the open wheel cars and modified type cars and people get somewhat tired of that class because they can see them everywhere. The open motor type late models is going to be something different that we have not had here for several years, so we are hearing quite a bit of buzz about it."
Friday night June 21st, will see the MLRA getting a second chance at the Rapid Speedway in Rock Rapids, IA. One year ago the inaugural event at the Northwest Iowa facility was literally washed away by mother nature, but track and series officials are determined to get the better end of mother nature this time around.
Located on the grounds of the famed Lyon County Fairgrounds, the 3/8-mile dirt oval is best known for its 80' wide racing surface that typically breeds three wide racing. With multiple late model touring series in the Rock Rapids area, along with the MLRA regular's expected from as far as Wisconsin and Oklahoma, Friday night should produce a good field of super late models.
In The Rear View: Last Saturdays "A" Main at the Dubuque Fairgrounds Speedway is one that both series leader Will Vaught and Decorah Iowa's Tyler Bruening would like to have back. After a second place run in his heat, Vaught appeared poised to stretch out his series point lead (45 pts) for the second night in a row--until contact with Bruening crippled Vaught's Rocket XR1 with just 16 laps to go leaving him with a 15th place finish, and a diminished point lead that now stands at just 29. And just when it looked like Bruening was poised to challenge Chad Simpson for his first MLRA win late in the going, it was a driveshaft failure that robbed the driver of the Capital Chassis of an opportunity to de-throne the defending champ. Expect both to bounce back and contend for the "W" this weekend.
The Look Ahead: To say the next four races for the MLRA have huge Championship implications would be an understatement. After next week's action at the Salina Highbanks is complete, it will leave just five regular points events on the 2019 schedule, along with the two-day Diamond Nationals. With little to no experience at either of this weekend's stops for the series leaders, it won't be surprising to again see a new face in victory lane playing the role of the spoiler. With Chad Simpson not chasing points in 2019 and fresh off his first win of the season, he could be the one to watch again this weekend.
Cresco Speedway: Cresco, IA Race Day Info-- Thursday 6/20/19
Gates: 5:00 PM
Racing: Hot Laps - 6:30 PM, Races to follow
Admission: Adult (16 yrs & up) $20, Kids (10 yrs to 15 yrs) $10, 9 & Under FREE
Support Classes: B-Modifieds, Stock Cars, Hobby Stocks
Rapid Speedway: Rock Rapids, IA Race Day Info-- Friday 6/21/19
Gates: 5:30 PM
Racing: Hot Laps - 7:00 PM, Races to follow.
Admission: Adults $20, Kids Ages 7-14 $5, Kids 6 & Under FREE
Support Classes: Sportsman, USRA Stock Car, USRA Hobby Stock, USRA B-Modified