By Jerry Mackey
COLUMBUS JUNCTION, Iowa (June 10, 2022) – The weather cleared Friday afternoon providing a beautiful night for racing at CJ Speedway. Mother Nature provided just the right amount of water on the 4/10 mile dirt track making for a very smooth, fast race track that evening.
The Friesen Performance IMCA Northern SportMods were the final race of the night and a strong field of 24 drivers took the initial green flag. Carter VanDenBerg took the green from the pole position and led the main event for 14 and ¾-lap but the checkers had not waved when a caution flew for the second place driver spinning in front of the field.
The field was reset for a green, white, checkered dash to the finish. VanDenBerg was holding off all challengers until the final lap when recent high school graduate Logan Veloz provided a thrilling finish.
Veloz got to the inside of VanDenBerg as the two came off of turn four heading to the checkers. Veloz scored the win by less than half a car length after leading less than 100 feet. VanDenBerg took second ahead of Shane Paris and Nick Aupperle.
Johnny Spaw made his second visit of the season to CJ Speedway and again proved he knows his way around the oval. Spaw took the green flag in the fourth row of the IMCA Sunoco Stock Car feature and steadily worked to the front, taking the lead near the midway point of the 16-lap feature
Spaw and Kirk Kinsley were having a great race for the lead until Kinsley dropped his right rear tire off the top of the track in turn three, causing a caution. Kinsley recovered with a strong run from the back to a fourth place finish. Spaw took the checkers ahead of Corey Strothman and Rod Staats.
Kurt Kile flexed his muscles, scoring an impressive win in the Friesen Performance IMCA Modified feature.
Kile got to the front early from a fourth row start and held a comfort lead until Jarrett Brown closed late in the race. Brown made it close but ran out of laps finishing less than a car length behind Kile at the checkers. Dakota Simmons scored another top five finish in taking third ahead of Kyle Madden.
Ryan Havel shot into the lead from his front row start in the IMCA Sunoco Hobby Stock feature and went on to record another win. Havel was pressured for the majority of the feature by Randy LaMar with the 4R of LaMar taking second by less than a car length at the finish line. Cody Staley ran up front the entire race in taking third.
Darin Smith made his way to victory lane following the 10-lap Mach-1 IMCA Sport Compact feature. Alex Hayes ran in second the majority of the main event but was not able to get past the smooth Smith. William Michel took third.