Stock Car Racing: Viehauser wins on good night for Fletcher Racing
BARROWS--AJ Viehauser drove his way to his first feature win of the season, and moved into third place in the early season standings behind teammate Shawn Fletcher on a dry, slick track Saturday at North Central Speedway.
BARROWS-AJ Viehauser drove his way to his first feature win of the season, and moved into third place in the early season standings behind teammate Shawn Fletcher on a dry, slick track Saturday at North Central Speedway.
Viehauser started from the second row and stayed up in the front of the pack for the duration of the race. Fletcher started from two rows back in row four and he was able to move his way up for a second-place finish.
After the final lap, the two cars drivers pulled up side-by-side to congratulate each other on a a good night for Fletcher Racing.
Another driver making a big move was Billy Kendall III who started from the fifth row alongside Aaron Johnson. Kendall III was able to nail down a third-place finish in the 20-lap feature.
Johnson moved up into fifth place and saw his two-race winning streak come to an end.
It has been a good start to the year for Johnson, who is starting his fourth year in his Modified 442 car. He has two first-place finishes this season and is also leading the class in points as of Saturday's race.
"I did all right in the heat and got third place," Johnson said of his night. "I started in the back in the feature and had some problems at the beginning but was able to work my way back up for a top five finish."
Track conditions were great for passing. Fletcher, Kendall III, and Johnson all proved that in moving up from starts in the back of the pack.
"I like when the track is slick when the best drivers come out and it is the best for passing," Johnson said. "When the track is heavy and fast, it is hard to pass people."
Given the nickname, "The Phenom" early in his career, Johnson had great success during his school years in a series of cars, before making the move to the Modified car three years ago.
Johnson could already be considered a veteran driver at the track, but he is a recent graduate of Brainerd High School, in the same class with Kendall III.
"I started in a sport compact and raced that for a year. I made the move to Pure Stock and raced there for a couple of years and won two track championships and went to a Street Stock and had some moderate success," Johnson said of his career path. "I moved up to the Modified class and have been there for the last three years."
The Modified racing car is the most powerful of the cars that race at the Speedway and the learning curve can be steep for some. Breaking through onto the winners podium can be a tough mountain to climb in the Modified class but Johnson achieved that in his first season.
Now that he has more time with his car, Johnson is getting more comfortable, which is a great thing for the competitive Modified class.
"You get more of a feel for the race car with seat time and through time in the shop that brings success," Johnson said of his Modified racing career.
More NCS results
Sport Compact points leader Curt Derichs collected another first-place trophy, while Tyler Pospisil made his first trip to the winners podium in the Hobby Stock class.
Jess Geesey is no stranger to hoisting the checkered flag and he did so again in the Mod 4 feature. He is also the points leader in the class.
Chris Van Mil won the Northern Sport Modified class, and Jake Goetze grabbed the top spot for the Super Stock feature race.
IMCA Sport Compacts:
Feature: 1-Curt Derichs, 2-Dustin Virkus, 3-Derek Stanoch
Heat 1: 1-Derek Stanoch, 2-Travis Roush, 3-Trista Pankratz
Heat 2: 1-Dustin Virkus, 2-Kaleb Ruikka, 3-Destiny Holmin
IMCA Hobby Stocks:
Feature: 1-Tyler Pospisil, 2-Tim Siercks, 3-Tim Gonska
Heat 1: 1-Tim Gonska, 2-Tyler Pospisil, 3-Chris Seidel
Heat 2: 1-Tim Siercks, 2-Joe Gonska, 3-Shayne Pankratz
NCS Mod 4s:
Feature: 1-Jess Geesey, 2-Drue Fletcher, 3-Gerry Nohner
Heat 1: 1-Jess Geesey, 2-Gerry Nohner, 3-Drue Fletcher
IMCA Northern Sport Modifieds:
Feature: 1-Chris VanMil, 2-David Siercks, 3-Brendon Yamry
Heat 1: 1-Troy Jordan, 2-Pete Hines, 3-Jake Hagemann
Heat 2: 1-Chris VanMil, 2-David Siercks, 3-Jacob Kierstad
NCS Super Stock:
Feature: 1-Jake Goetze, 2-Dylan Nelson, 3-Jordan Henkemeyer
Heat 1: 1-Dylan Nelson, 2-Jake Goetze, 3-Austin Niemeyer
Feature: 1-AJ Viehauser, 2-Shawn Fletcher, 3-Billy Kendall III
Heat 1: 1-Ryan Canon, 2-AJ Viehauser, 3-Aaron Johnson
Heat 2: 1-Luke Hines, 2-Billy Kendall III, 3-Erick Thiesse