It’s hard to believe but there is only one week of racing left at Shawano Speedway. The season will conclude on Saturday, Sept. 4 during the Shawano County Fair.
Whether it’s the economy or just the wear and tear of a long race season, the car counts have fallen over the last couple weeks. For the entire year, race fans have been wondering what can be done to increase the WISSOTA Late Model car count. Well, last week there were more WISSOTA Late Models on hand than FASTRAK Late Models and IMCA Modifieds.
The most alarming issue to me right now is the decline of the IMCA Modified car count. This division used to garner 35-45 cars each week at Shawano Speedway. In 2010, there have been several weeks where there have been less than 20 on hand. I think the economy has taken a toll, but I also believe the introduction of the IMCA Northern SportMod division a few years ago has hurt the IMCA Modified car count.
Now, a driver who wants to race a modified can get their start in the less expensive IMCA Northern SportMod division instead of cutting their teeth in the highly competitive IMCA Modified division. We’ll have to see how things shake out during the offseason.
With the last week of racing on Saturday comes the crowning of the track champions in each division. Unfortunately there is only one division at the Speedway in which the track championship is still up in the air. Seymour’s Jerry Wilinksi currently holds a four point lead over Green Bay’s Eddie Muenster in the IMCA Modified division. Appleton’s Brandon Czarapata is 12 points back, while Jason Czarapata is 25 points out of first.
In the IMCA divisions, points are accumulated only in the features, and there is a one point differential between each finishing position. For Muenster to overtake Wilinski in the standings, he will need to finish five positions ahead of Wilinski in the feature. Anything less than that, then Wilinski wins the championship. Wilinski is looking to win his first track championship at Shawano Speedway.
With Pulaski’s Shawn Wagner winning the IMCA Stock Car feature last week, and Pulaski’s Rod Snellenberger missing the week due to medical reasons, Wagner clinched the track championships, his first at the Speedway.
As long as Green Bay’s Ron Berna shows up and races on Saturday, he will clinch the WISSOTA Late Model track championship. New London’s Justin Ritchie is in second place in the standings, 35 points back. The way the point structure is set up, it is virtually impossible to make up that amount of points in one week.
It’s the same situation in the FASTRAK Late Model division. Neenah’s Dave Fieber holds a 40 point lead over Shawano’s Brett Swedberg. Fieber hasn’t mathematically clinched the title, but Fieber would have to have major problems and Swedberg would have to sweep the evening’s events to win the title. It would be Fieber’s first track championship at the Speedway.
Tilleda’s Clint Forstner has virtually locked up the IMCA Northern SportMod track championship. He has a 31 point lead over Hortonville’s Travis Van Straten. It would be Forstner’s first track title at the Speedway.
See you at the track.