By Joyce Eisele
BOONE, Iowa (May 15) – Two drivers returned to victory lane after several years’ absence, one driver made his first-ever appearance on the winner’s stage at the track and two drivers took repeat wins Saturday at Boone Speedway.
Chase Rudolf and Josh Gilman led the IMCA Modified field to green, with Gilman gaining the upper hand and taking command. Gilman was challenged several times by Andy Tiernan but it was to no avail as Gilman went on to take the checkers in the caution-free contest.
This was Gilman’s first weekly win since 2011 at Boone. Tiernan had to be content with second place, Rudolf finished third, Clint Wendel was fourth, and Jimmy Gustin raced from 10th starting to take fifth.
The Class Too Tough To Tame, the IMCA Sunoco Stock Cars ran their usual entertaining 20-lap race. There was lots of close racing action up front with David Smith taking the early race lead. Mike VanGenderen was knocking on the door and Rod Richards, Donavon Smith, and Tyler Pickett were in hot pursuit as well.
A flat tire knocked Richards out of the game before the halfway mark of the race and Michael Jaennette threw his hat in the ring running in third spot behind Donavon Smith, as they both eyed David Smith.
Jaennette reeled them both in and took over the top spot on lap 13. He went on to hold that lead the remainder of the way to the checkers and the win, his first trip back to victory lane at Boone since 2014. David Smith finished second, brother Donavon took third, Scott Davis started 15th and finished fourth, and VanGenderen snagged a top five finish.
The IMCA Sunoco Hobby Stocks found a first-time local winner taking a trip to the podium. Matt McDonald wrestled away the lead from Jack Phillips with just three laps remaining in the 15-lap feature to take home the win. Wayne Gifford took second, just getting by Eric Stanton in the closing moments. Fourth went to Mike Smith and Jack Phillips rounded out the top five.
Cody Yaw led all 15 laps of the IMCA STARS Mod Lite feature event. Austin Gray hung close through the first few laps but Yaw then pulled away to secure an easy victory, his second of the year. Gray took the runner-up spot while Colby Reid, rookie to the class and in just his first handful of races, took third. Fourth went to Josh May and Mike Kennedy was fifth.
Nic Runyan led the first five laps of the Karl Kustoms Northern SportMod feature only to be off power and out of the race and Danny Fye taking over the top spot. In the meantime, Johnathon Logue moved from 11th starting up to run second and began challenging.
By lap eight, Logue had the lead and then pulled away and secured another win. Cam Reimers recovered nicely from an early race bobble and finished as the runner-up. Third was visiting Chowchilla, Calif., racer Kaylin Lopez, Jenae Gustin took fourth, and Izac Mallicoat completed the top five.