Wolla, Bowers score IMCA Modified wins at RPM’s Hughes Memorial Sunflower Classic 

Defending national champion Jason Wolla collected his first IMCA Modified feature win of the sea­son Friday at RPM Speedway’s Mike Hughes Memorial Sunflower Classic. (Photo by Carl Larson)

HAYS, Kan. (March 30-31) – Defending national champion Jason Wolla and defending regional champion Steven Bowers Jr. were IMCA Modified winners at RPM Speedway’s season-opening Mike Hughes Memorial Sunflower Classic.

Wolla started eighth and worked his way to the lead with 10 laps left in the Friday feature. Bowers bounced back from an opening night misadventure in his heat and checked out on everybody in the Saturday main.

Both features paid $1,000 to win and both drivers were already on the Fast Shafts All-Star Invita­tional ballot. Two hundred-plus race teams from seven states made the trip to Hayes for the sixth annual special.

Wolla found himself biding his time once up to third behind Tanner Black and Tyler Frye. He passed both on a restart and pulled away to get his first win of the season and first Kansas check­ers.

“It could take a month or more to get your first win of the year. You never know,” Wolla said. “It means a lot to us to be able to win here.”

Black, Tripp Gaylord, Frye and Dylan Sherfick completed the top five. Hard charger Jordy Nelson started 22nd and finished sixth.

Banged up in his heat race, Bowers was forced to make some quick repairs and was the final qualifier from his opening night ‘B’ feature. He motored from last on the starting grid to a credible 10th, then focused on getting his car race-ready for Saturday.

After a challenging opening night, Steven Bowers Jr. scored the Saturday IMCA Modified victory at RPM Speedway. (Photo by Carl Larson)

His Sunflower Classic sweep a year ago helped pave the way to the Jet Racing Central Region crown. Bowers showed Saturday that he could be a contender to repeat, starting sixth, passing veteran Marlyn Seidler for the lead and rocketing to the checkers.

“We knew we had the hot rod to get to the front,” said Bowers, after getting draw help from young crew member Alexa Gaither. “This (home built) car has been updated from last year. We’ve got 100 shows on it so we’re very comfortable with it.”

“Having the defending national champion here forced us all to step up our game,” he continued. “Hayes is one of the toughest tracks around to race at. It’s always fun racing with the Western Kansas guys.”

Seidler, Jesse Richter Frye and Josh Vogt ran second through fifth, respectively. Wolla was sixth.

Other Friday winners were Colin Heim in the IMCA Sunoco Stock Cars, Zach Olmstead in the IMCA Sunoco Hobby Stocks, Dustin Daniels in the Karl Chevrolet Northern SportMods and Mitch Bolton in the Mach-1 Sport Compacts.

Saturday checkers also flew for Nichols in the Stocks, Luke Wassom in the Hobbies, Blaine Walt in the SportMods and Zach Bohlmeyer in the Sport Compacts.

Nichols and Casey Woken chased Heim across the stripe. Angel Munoz was second and 19th starting Kyle Vanover third in Saturday’s Stock Car main.

Cody Williams and Garrett Hager rounded out Friday’s Hobby Stock top three. Olmstead and An­drew Burg were closest when the 18th starting Wassom took the Saturday win.

“We moved forward early. Mid-race the car started coming in and we got the middle line to work,” said Wassom, another driver in a home-built car and who turned more than a few heads with his lap times. “Driving from 18th to first is pretty rare.”

Daniels won Friday’s SportMod main from 12th starting while Cody Thompson made his way from 24th to second and Tyler Watts was third. Walt, Olmstead and Thompson ran 1-2-3 on Saturday.

Bolton’s opening night Sport Compact victory came ahead of Zach Bohlmeyer and John Martinez.

Drake Bohlmeyer and Trenton Fugett completed Saturday’s top three.

March 30

Modifieds – 1. Jason Wolla; 2. Tanner Black; 3. Tripp Gaylord; 4. Tyler Frye; 5. Dylan Sherfick; 6. Jordy Nelson; 7. Jeremy Frenier; 8. Clay Money; 9. Josh Vogt; 10. Steven Bowers Jr.; 11. Cody Gearhart; 12. Marlyn Seidler; 13. Eddie Belec; 14. Shane Hiatt; 15. David Murray Jr.; 16. Corey Cox; 17. Greg Gustus; 18. Brian Cross; 19. Bill Brack; 20. Ryan Gaylord; 21. Brandon Span­jer; 22. Danny Morrison; 23. Jeremy Zorn; 24. Mike Petersilie.

Stock Cars – 1. Colin Heim; 2. Mike Nichols; 3. Casey Woken; 4. Jeff Tubbs; 5. B.J. Wagoner; 6. Chris Heim; 7. Dan Nelson; 8. Nolan Remus; 9. Tyler Tipton; 10. Kyle Pfeifer; 11. Nick Tubbs; 12. Ja­son Rogers; 13. Justin Bussell; 14. Travis Demitt; 15. Shannon Maughlin; 16. Shaylon Hol­loway; 17. Jeff Whiting; 18. Joe Bellm; 19. Beau Deschamp; 20. Troy Burkhart; 21. Kevin Wag­oner; 22. Angel Munoz; 223. Mark Zorn; 24. Jason Schoenberger.

Hobby Stocks – 1. Zach Olmstead; 2. Cody Williams; 3. Garrett Hager; 4. Andrew Burg; 5. Shay Simoneau; 6. Tathan Burkhart; 7. Duane Wahrman; 8. Luke Wassom; 9. Lyle Russell; 10. Wade Wagenblast; 11. Dillon Richards; 12. Brady Bencken; 13. Roger Garrison; 14. Eric Cross; 15. Chuck Ledbetter; 16. Colton Pfeifer; 17. Shawn Weigel; 18. Joel Dix; 19. Spencer Hilbrink; 20. Nicole Woods; 21. Braxton Berry; 22. Brian Stich; 23. Travis Coop; 24. Shane Grippin.

Northern SportMods – 1. Dustin Daniels; 2. Cody Thompson; 3. Tyler Watts; 4. Erik Laudenschlager; 5. Blaine Walt; 6. Dakota Sproul; 7. Tracy Holloway; 8. Rodger Peck; 9. Ronnie Hults; 10. Brian Barber; 11. Adam Weber; 12. Tony Dugan; 13. Ethan Braaksma; 14. Brian Mur­phy; 15. Jacob Fehler; 16. Zach Nitsch; 17. Eric Folstad; 18. Brenden Damon; 19. Nick Hankins; 20. Jacob Olmstead; 21. Brett Berry; 22. Brandon Wise; 23. Shane Meeks; 24. C.J. Pfannenstiel.

Sport Compacts – 1. Mitch Bolton; 2. Zach Bohlmeyer; 3. John Martinez; 4. Drake Bohlmeyer; 5. Jakob Schwein; 6. Toby Schwein; 7. Lanny Bolton; 8. David Norquest; 9. Josh Black; 10. Joshua Young; 11. Billy Turner; 12. Art Herzog; 13. Otto Schutte; 14. Andrew Soderlund; 15. Monte Ho­nas; 16. Madison Reed; 17. Noah Boller; 18. Richard Crow; 19. Trenton Fugett.

March 31

Modifieds – 1. Bowers; 2. Seidler; 3. Jesse Richter; 4. Frye; 5. Vogt; 6. Wolla; 7. Black; 8. Money; 9. Nelson; 10. Ryan Gaylord; 11. John Hansen; 12. Tyler Sutton; 13. Garrett Sporhase; 14. Curtis Barnes; 15. Frenier; 16. Kevin Gray; 17. Hiatt; 18. Ryan Heger; 19. Sherfick; 20. Jacob Hobscheidt; 21. Kaid Calhoon; 22. Petersilie; 23. Belec; 24. Tim Watts.

Stock Cars – 1. Nichols; 2. Munoz; 3. Kyle Vanover; 4. Tipton; 5. Bellm; 6. Rogers; 7. Holloway; 8. Schoenberger; 9. Pfeifer; 10. Tanner Portenier; 11. Whiting; 12. Josh Schweitzer; 13. B.J. Wag­oner; 14. Colin Heim; 15. Deschamp; 16. Nick Tubbs; 17. Jeff Tubbs; 18. Dusty Palmore; 19. Kyle Clough; 20. Kevin Wagoner; 21. Jason Davis; 22. Zach Schweitzer; 23. Woken; 24. Burkhart.

Hobby Stocks – 1. Wassom; 2. Olmstead; 3. Burg; 4. Cross; 5. Russell; 6. Burkhart; 7. Wagenblast; 8. Caleb Hetrick; 9. Eric Chab; 10. Stich; 11. Pfeifer; 12. Dix; 13. Wahrman; 14. Brett Henke; 15. Woods; 16. Weigel; 17. Hager; 18. Brooke Russell; 19. Richards; 20. Hilbrink; 21. Wil­liams; 22. Simoneau; 23. Bencken; 24. Grippin.

Northern SportMods – 1. Walt; 2. Olmstead; 3. Thompson; 4. Sproul; 5. Laudenschlager; 6. Mitch Boesel; 7. Daniels; 8. Braaksma; 9. Holloway; 10. Meeks; 11. Fehler; 12. Berry; 13. Watts; 14. Folstad; 15. Murphy; 16. Dusty Masolini; 17. Hankins; 18. Pfannenstiel; 19. Ricky Saunders; 20. David Pitt; 21. Nitsch; 22. Hults; 23. Dugan; 24. Weber.

Sport Compacts – 1. Zach Bohlmeyer; 2. Drake Bohlmeyer; 3. Fugett; 4. Lanny Bolton; 5. Crow; 6. Toby Schwein; 7. Martinez; 8. Mitch Bolton; 9. Soderlund; 10. Black; 11. Young; 12. Jakob Schwein; 13. Turner; 14. David Norquest; 15. Herzog; 16. Schutte; 17. Zachary Cardwell; 18. Boller; 19. Reed.