Schettler and Varda Steal the Show at Norway Speedway
Friday’s racing at the Norway Speedway will go down in history as a night full of great racing and even greater stories. From two first time winners, including one who finished on her roof, to an emotional win in the Auto Value Super Stock division, the night had it all. Absent from this week’s event were the Wisconsin Sport Trucks who take the week off from the track.
141 Auto Sales Stock Cars
Sometimes a finish to a race relegates everything else that happened in the race meaningless. Such is the case with this week’s 141 Auto Sales Stock Car feature, the Ed Hedlund Memorial.
After controlling the field the whole race, things would come to a bombastic close for the father daughter duo of Jeff and Kaitlyn Schettler. Kaitlyn ran the bottom line while Jeff helped hold back challengers on the high side. With the two running side by side, essentially herding the field behind them, a Schettler victory seemed to be a lock.
As the field rumbled out of turn four, Jeff Schettler was tagged in the left rear, sending him spinning into his daughter. Kaitlyn’s car hooked right and flipped onto its roof as the field crossed the finish line in a heap of wrecked race cars.
Still in the lead crossing the finish line? Kaitlyn Schettler, upside down, with father Jeff behind her in second. Third place would belong to Gary Thom, who was also collected in the melee.
The thing on everyone’s mind, though, was whether Kaitlyn was ok. Her father, Jeff, said post-race it was the only thing he could think about while his car spun to a stop. Kaitlyn was thinking about something entirely different.
“I was just wondering if I’d won the race!” She said with an ear to ear smile. Needless to say, she was ok.
Up until the final lap of this race, no cautions had flown in the Stock Car division for the entire 2019 season.
Auto Value Super Stocks
Note: Following last week’s controversial finish, Ryan Wender was named the winner of the feature race of Auto Value round one. You can read about that race in last week’s Rose Racing Report from Norway Speedway.
A clean race for the Auto Value Super Stocks was in store next, as they ran the full race under green flag conditions. The only incident of the race would, like the 141 Auto Sales Stock Cars, would come on the last lap as Andy Gerwig would spin to the infield while trying to grab the third spot.
Adam Faull led the opening stages of the feature while Brett Bray gave him chase. With laps winding down, Bray would make the pass to claim the point and, eventually, the race win. For Brett, it was an emotional win as it is his first following the passing of his father Gene.
Holding on for second was Adam Faull while Parker Cain would hang on to third after withstanding a challenge from Andy Gerwig who spun in turn two on the final lap.
Bink’s Coca-Cola Late Models
When the Bink’s Coca-Cola Late Model feature was over it was veteran driver, Dean Varda, who led lap to lap in a barnburner of a race to find his way to victory lane for the first time ever.
Varda started the race on the front row and grabbed the lead, not relinquishing it the rest of the night. But it wasn’t all smooth sailing to the finish for Varda. He would have to fight his way through lapped traffic and withstand two late race restarts to reign victorious.
With less than ten laps to go, two drivers who are both familiar with the Norway Speedway Victory Lane pressured Varda. Last week’s winner, Robby Iverson, and four time defending track champion, Dillon Kralovetz, rode side by side in second and third each putting up their own fight to get around Varda.
As each lap went by, however, Varda held on to the lead and when the checkered flag flew the crowd erupted for the journeyman driver. Kralovetz and Iverson would finish in second and third, respectively.
As Dean Varda pulled into Victory Lane, the crowd gave him an ovation befitting for the driver who has raced at the track for years, but has never been able to seal the deal. For Dean and all of the fans at the Norway Speedway, it truly was “Varda Time.”
MC Signs & Graphics Four Cylinders
The night was capped off by a dominant performance from Isaac Bray in the MC Signs & Graphics Four Cylinder Feature. Before Bray could set sail, however, there was a multi car crash in turn four that collected weekly contender Elliot Reid. Reid was pushed back to the pits, where he would end his night.
Following the restart, Isaac Bray left the field in his dust. It seemed there was no stopping him, either. That is, until the caution flag waved with two laps to go. That restart, though, followed the same storyline as the other with Bray jumping back to the lead.
Isaac Bray crossed the line in first, where he had spent the majority of the feature. Zack Gazda came home in second with Wyatt Bray finishing in third.
Next week brings us to the 36th Annual Stateline Challenge at the Norway Speedway. The Rose Racing Report will be at the track all day to bring you the usual report, as well as updates throughout the course of the day. Green flag time is set for 6:45 p.m. CST. If need be, a rain date is set for the next day, July 6.
By Todd Rose