By Jeremy Fox
INDEPENDENCE, Iowa (June 5) – Brandon Tharp raced to his career first Karl Kustoms Northern SportMod win, Jerry Dedrick’s IMCA Modified victory paid $1,000 and Jarod Weepie topped yet another milestone IMCA Sunoco Stock Car event on mid-season championship night Saturday at Independence Motor Speedway.
Tharp hit his marks and fended off multiple challenges for a win he said was five years in the making. Brady Hilmer finished second ahead of Kenny Wyman Jr., Kyle Olson and Tony Olson.
The Modified feature paid $1,000 to win after last week’s scheduled Fast Shafts All-Star Invitational ballot qualifier got rained out. Dedrick started on the pole and held off several challenges from Jarrett Brown. New All-Star candidate Dedrick led Brown, Mike Burbridge, Ryan Maitland and Jason Morehouse across the line.
Stock Cars were running their 400th feature event in Independence and Kevin Rose led the first four laps of the 20-lapper.
Weepie grabbed the race lead on the second of two ensuing restarts and held on to take the 400th checkers ahead of Philip Holtz, Jay Schmidt, Tom Schmitt and Scooter Dulin.
Weepie also won the 200th feature event held at Indee; the Saturday victory was his career 30th there.
After moving to the front on lap 18, Travis Smock held on following a restart five laps later to take the IMCA Sunoco Late Model feature win ahead of Logan Duffy, Sean Johnson, Ben Seemann and Scott Welsh.
Brett Vanous got by front row starters Austin Mehmen and Chris Pittman on the start and never looked back in winning the IMCA Sunoco Hobby Stock feature. Justin Hanson finished second and Gary Ollendieck moved up eight spots to finish third. Luke Schluetter and Tyler Ollendieck were fourth and fifth, respectively.
Next week, June 12, is Burco Farms Night at the Races. The following week, June 19, is Crawford Farms Hall of Fame Night, where the 2021 class will be inducted. This year’s class includes Paul Fitzpatrick, Bob Hilmer, Karl Sanger, Bill Barthelmes, Don Bedard, Tiny Russell and Gordon Bentley.