By Ryan Clark
VINTON, Iowa (July 13) – The last time J.D. Auringer won the Hogan Memorial, he led every lap except one.
He did himself one better Sunday night at Benton County Speedway.
Auringer, who first won the IMCA Xtreme Motor Sports Modified special in 2007, led all 40 laps Sunday night to earn his second victory in the event’s 20-year history.
Auringer earned $1,250 for winning the race, plus $2,250 in lap money and the halfway leader bonus and additional bonus money to bring his total share of the purse to $3,850. He also receives a free wrap from Tenacity Graphics, plus a new Hoosier tire from IMCA.
The win also put him on the ballot for the upcoming Fast Shafts All-Star Invitational. Forty-five Modified drivers from six states signed in to compete Sunday at Vinton.
From his outside front row starting spot, Auringer pulled away from pole-sitter Jeremy Mills when the green flag waved.
Running the high groove, Auringer built a straightaway lead and encountered lapped traffic while Hunter Marriott and Dan Chapman made their way into second and third.
Auringer maintained his advantage when a mandatory caution slowed action on lap 20. During the stoppage, drivers were given five minutes to make any adjustments to their cars on the front straightaway before the second 20-lap installment.
When racing resumed, Auringer returned to the high groove and regained his straightaway lead while Marriott and Chapman continued to battle.
Marriott broke free from Chapman in the waning laps and then attempted to chase down the leader. Auringer remained too strong in traffic as he sailed to victory in the event, which was slowed only for the mandatory caution.
Chapman finished third ahead of Mike Jergens, who won one of two “B” features. Jergens advanced 13 positions to earn $500 as the hard-charger.
Auringer joined four-time winner Scott Hogan and two-time winner Timm Jensen as the only repeat winners in event history.
Justin Stander earned his first career win in the IMCA Sunoco Stock Car division. Sam Wieben topped the Karl Chevrolet Northern SportMods and Brian Happel was the IMCA Sunoco Hobby Stock winner.
Next events in IMCA’s Hawkeye State Modified Speedweek are $1,000 to win XSAN Hawkeye Dirt Tour shows on Monday, July 14 at Lee County Speedway in Donnellson and Tuesday, July 15 at Southern Iowa Speedway is Oskaloosa.
Another $1,000 to win show is Wednesday, July 16 during the Mahaska County Fair in Oskaloosa. Speedweek ends with the $2,000 to win Harris Clash, also a Hawkeye Dirt Tour event, on Thursday, July 17 at Knoxville Raceway.
Feature results – 1. J.D. Auringer, Waterloo; 2. Hunter Marriott, Brookfield, Mo.; 3. Dan Chapman, Clarence; 4. Mike Jergens, Plover; 5. Richie Gustin Jr., Gilman; 6. Cayden Carter, Oslakoosa; 7. Kyle Brown, Kellogg; 8. Jeremy Mills, Garner; 9. Troy Cordes, Dunkerton; 10. Joe Docekal, Dysart; 11. Jake Bowman, Maquoketa; 12. Zach Less, Hopkinton; 13. Tim Ward, Gilbert, Ariz.; 14. Ronn Lauritzen, Jesup; 15. Bruce Hanford, Davenport; 16. Scott Hogan, Vinton; 17. Josh Gilman, Earlham; 18. Tony Snyder, Readlyn; 19. Vern Jackson, Waterloo; 20. Joel Rust, Grundy Center; 21. Mitch Morris, Eldridge; 22. Tyler Droste, Waterloo; 23. Ed Thomas, Waterloo; 24. Patrick Flannagan, Cedar Rapids; 25. Jerry Dedrick, Vinton; 26. Racer Hulin, Laurel.
Heat winners were Marriott, Mills, Snyder, Hulin and Gilman. Jergens and Cordes won the “B” features.