By Jerry Mackey
COLUMBUS JUNCTION, Iowa (June 9, 2023) – IMCA Speedway Motors Weekly Racing returned to CJ Speedway on Friday night with near perfect weather conditions and a solid field of race cars were on hand to put on a great night of racing on a perfectly prepared race track in front of a nice crowd.
It is always special to see a regular competitor score the first win of their racing career at the track and that was the case Friday night as Dakota Simmons, The Douds Missile, captured the win in the very tough Friesen Performance IMCA Modified feature.
An early dust-up saw the cars of Troy Philpott and Brian Bushong retire to the pit area before one lap was completed. With the lineup reset, the race was on and the very racy track allowed plenty of action as the front runners came from deep in the field.
Danny Brau led early before Tim Simpson took over the top spot for a couple of laps. The ninth starting Simmons took over the top spot and went on to record his first-ever CJ Speedway win. Simmons took the win as a battle for second was waged between Brandon Banks and Shane Richardson. Banks came from the 16th starting spot to nip Richardson at the finish line.
The Friesen Performance IMCA Northern SportMods saw a strong field of 18 drivers take the initial green flag. Shane Paris emerged from a pack of front runners to take over the top spot with four laps completed.
Paris led until a lap car slowed him as he entered turn three, and that brief pause allowed Dylan VanWyk to shoot to the bottom of turn three and take over the top spot with five laps to go.
VanWyk continued his recent hot streak by taking the win over Paris and defending track champion Trey Rock.
Corey Strothman returned to CJ Speedway after setting out of racing for several weeks due to farming commitments and appeared to be en route to the IMCA Sunoco Stock Car feature win.
While getting ready for a restart, however, Strothman was picking up speed and his fan belt let go, causing overheating which sent him to the pit area. Johnny Spaw took over the point position and went on to score the win ahead of Dustin Griffiths and Jason See.
The IMCA Sunoco Hobby Stock feature win went to Luke Phillips, who has become a regular visitor to the FoCo Victory Lane. Phillips raced to the front from a third row start and went on to record the win ahead of youngster Tucker Richardson. Defending track champion Randy LaMar crossed the finish line in third.
And the Mach-1 IMCA Sport Compacts put on a great feature race with the winner in doubt until the front runners crossed under the checkers. Bob Hayes led a good portion of the main event only to have Shane Barnes get to the inside in turn four coming to the finish line. Barnes was able to get the win by a mere two feet over the veteran Hayes. Tim Schnathorst took the third position.
IMCA Weekly racing will continue at CJ Speedway on Friday, June 16, with hot laps taking to the track at 7 p.m.