BARROWS—Tempers were flaring and cars were on their sides during a thrilling night of feature racing Saturday at North Central Speedway. Last week Hobby Stock driver Corey Hill claimed the checkered flag and is sitting third in the points standings. He had to watch most of Saturday night's feature from the field after running into trouble on Turn Four early in the race, resulting in his car ending up on its side. Hill was able to walk away and his car got back on two wheels with the help of a tow truck, but his night of racing was over.
BARROWS—For the second time this season Modified driver Billy Kendall stood on the winners podium Saturday night after winning the 20-lap feature event. What happened between Kendall's first and second wins makes Saturday's win special. Coming off of his 2016 track championship season, the expectations were high for Kendall, who started the season with a win April 22 and a third-place finish April 29. Kendall didn't make it for the feature the following week. Word spread he was in a wreck in Jamestown, N.D., that week. While he checked out fine, his car was damaged.
BARROWS—An early season battle is taking shape in the Modified class between Shawn Fletcher and Ryan Canon. Fletcher gained the top spot over Canon in the 20-lap feature event Saturday at North Central Speedway. The drivers are separated by just four points in the standings with Canon holding the lead. Aaron Johnson is just 12 points off of the lead and he scored a heat win before falling back in the feature.
BARROWS—It was a night for track champions as Robert Young Jr., Dean Blanchard Jr., and David Siercks, all 2016 points champions, were feature winners on the fourth night of racing Saturday at North Central Speedway. Starting from row five in the 15-lap event, Siercks won his second feature of the year in the Northern Sport Modified class with a run past Jake Hagemann and Adam Bohlman. Hagemann and Siercks also share the top two spots in the points chase with a three-point margin between the two of them. Siercks holds the top spot.
BARROWS—Northern Sport Modified driver Jacob Jordan made his way to victory lane Saturday for the second time in his young career, and the first this season in the 15-lap feature event. Jordan got the start from the front row and held off veteran track champion David Siercks to get the win. Jordan pointed out two keys to the win. "I just stayed up on the tire (tracks), and didn't move off of it because that's where the groove was," Jordan said.
BARROWS—In a battle between the veteran and the two rising stars, it was the veteran that came away with the top spot in a thrilling Modified feature Saturday at North Central Speedway. Running on a slick track that was as black as asphalt, Seth Kramer found a line and held it for the 20-lap feature while overcoming a green-white-checkered restart to hold off Brainerd High School seniors Aaron Johnson and Billy Kendall.
The success of any sport is shown through the youth that participate in the activity and with the age of fans watching it. Under those guidelines, the 2016 racing season at North Central Speedway was a successful one. Four of the six class champions were either barely into their 20s, just out of school or still in school, and raced each Saturdays night in front of a large number of young fans. Billy Kendall, Robert Young Jr., Brendon Yamry, and Dylan Nelson were class champions last year and all have a good chance of repeating in 2017. The 17-race regular season starts Saturday at NCS.
For a team coming off a Region 13B championship and a seventh-place finish in the NJCAA Division III National Tournament, 2017 will be a year of new beginnings for the Central Lakes College Raiders.
Saturday, April 8, is an important date for first-year Central Lakes College Raiders baseball head coach Brian Voigt as he will go up up against his former school, Riverland, and his former head coach, Scott Koenigs. Koenigs has coached teams to six MCAC conference titles, two region championships and two appearances in the NJCAA Division III Worlds Series. And that is where Voigt wants the Raiders to be in the near future. Voigt has played for teams that attained a high level of success.
Party crashing underdogs. That's the role the Central Lakes College Raiders and head coach Jim Russell will take into this weekend's Minnesota College Athletic Conference state tournament. The North No. 2 seeded Raiders (19-7 overall) will open against South No. 3 St. Cloud Technical College (20-5) 6 p.m. Friday at Anoka-Ramsey The Raiders played through early adversity looking for an identity. That included losses to St. Cloud and Anoka-Ramsey, two teams standing in CLC's way this weekend.