Fans and Drivers both Winners at Eagle River Speedway Kids' Night
Writer’s Note: Because I was filling in announcing Tuesday night at Eagle River, there are no pictures from the racing in this report, as announcing took precedence over photography.
Tuesday night marked the 2019 edition of Kids’ Night at the Eagle River Speedway. For the festivities, a number of prizes were raffled off throughout the event with the grand prize of Packer tickets to be drawn at intermission after fans met the drivers of Eagle River Speedway on the track’s frontstretch.
Junior Micro Sprints
Prior to intermission, the Junior Micro Sprint division took to the track for their feature race, which would run green flag the whole way.
Blake Hartman controlled the race flag to flag, jumping to the lead while the rest of the field raced behind him in the opening laps.
As the field began to spread out, Josh Nevoraski, who came into the night leading the points, ran into issues in the feature. Earlier in the night, Nevoraski also experienced issues in the heat, exiting the race early. In the feature, he would salvage a sixth place finish.
Up front, though, it was Blake Hartman grabbing the win. In second place was Dayton Rein with Aedeyn Schmidt following in third place.
600 Micro Sprints
After the conclusion of intermission, the 600 Micro Sprint drivers battled it out for the win. From the pole position to the lead went Ty Springer at the drop of the green flag. While Springer controlled things up front, another Springer was putting on quite the show further back.
Tommie Springer, who began her race on the outside of row three, made several moves through traffic to work her way to the third position by the end of the race.
Ty Springer held on to win the feature race, in his first feature race of the night. The 16-year-old would race later in the B Modified feature as well. In second place was Dylan Larsen and in third was Tommie Springer.
In the Stock Division feature race there was action throughout the field, with battles for position all over the track.
The most memorable battle, however, came in the final laps as Ryan Valeria and Rod Snellenberger fought for the win. Up until the final handful of laps, Valeria had controlled the race with a sizeable margin over the rest of the field. With every passing lap, though, Rod Snellenberger was closing the gap.
By the time the white flag was ready to fly, Snellenberger was right on Valeria’s bumper, even making a slight bit of contact. A few times it looked like Snellenberger would make a move on the inside, but he just couldn’t get the move to stick.
In the end, time ran out for Rod Snellenberger as Ryan Valeria held him off to win the Stock feature. Snellenberger crossed close behind in second with another double duty driver, Dustin White, rounding out the top three.
A lack of cars in the Four Cylinder division brought about a unique scenario, a duel in the dirt between father and daughter.
It was a “Schoone Showdown” between father Mark and daughter Ashley for the Four Cylinder feature. In the heat race, it was Mark getting the win. The story would be different in the feature, though, as Ashley would hold off her dad to win the race.
In both the heat and feature, the Schoones raced side by side for every lap, putting on a show for the fans regardless of the lack of other competitors.
It would be a great thing to see the Four Cylinder division grow, however. In the weeks where there has been a full field, the racing in the division is always an exciting show.
RACE OF THE YEAR CONTEDNDER! When looking back at all of the races we’ve witnessed here this year at Rose Racing Report, the B Modified Feature from Tuesday night’s action in Eagle River is hands down the best race we’ve seen anywhere.
This race had it all, three and four wide racing, side by side battles for the lead, and a classic finish that delivered every bit of excitement as was seen in the entire race. Words really can’t do the racing justice. It was just that good.
Many times when there are battles throughout the field, the leader is able to check out and cruise to victory. That was far from the case Tuesday night. Evan Call and Jason Zdroik raced side by side for the lead for what seemed like every single lap. Call had started on the front row while Zdroik started in row three. It took a few laps for Zdroik to make his way to the front, but once he was there, the fight was on.
Both Zdroik and Call chose their own line to run, with Zdroik running high and Call hugging the bottom. It didn’t matter which lane a driver was in Tuesday night, they were all fast and the track crew should be commended for the job they did preparing the track.
With every lap, it was impossible to give an advantage to either driver. One lap Zdroik would have the edge, the next it would be Call by inches, the one after that they’d be dead even. This battle raged on until a caution with four laps to go bunched the field back together.
On the restart it was the same story as drivers battled two, three, and almost four wide through the pack. Finally though, Jason Zdroik was able to grab the top spot as the white flag was ready to fly.
Zdroik crossed the line first while every position from there on back was up for grabs. Evan Call snagged the second position while Jesse Aho came from seemingly nowhere to take third.
With this kind of racing, Eagle River Speedway is a must visit for fans and drivers alike.
Pure Stock Class
After a race like the one seen in the B Modified feature, it is almost a certainty that the next race in line will be a disappointment. Not the case here. The Pure Stock feature had almost as much excitement in it as the B Modified feature.
Again, there was racing throughout the field. While Tristan Valeria held the lead up front, a mad pack of cars snarled behind him.
Roger Walker was able to escape this pack to make his way to the top end of the field. As he set his sights on the leaders, the pack made up of Keith Troutman, Dave Dishaw, Brian Mahler, and James Melton continued to beat and bang for position.
Walker eventually worked his way to the back of Tristan Valeria for the top spot. Before too long, it was Valeria looking at the back of Walker. But like the B Mod feature before it, a caution would bunch the field up with four laps to go.
On the restart, Walker got a rocket of a jump, securing him the race win a few circuits later. The hotly contested race for second fell in favor of Tristan Valeria who held off Keith Troutman in third.
Eagle River is racing again next week, with racing slated to start just after 7 p.m. CST.
By Todd Rose