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Ogilvie Raceway Kicks Off 2023 Season with a Full Night of Race Action Featuring the Structural Buildings WISSOTA Late Model Challenge Series


Ogilvie Raceway

Ogilvie Raceway Kicks Off 2023 Season with a Full Night of Race Action Featuring the Structural Buildings WISSOTA Late Model Challenge Series

By: Tami Jo Kuehn

Ogilvie, MN (May 20) – After 7 weeks of cancellations due to snow or rain, Wagamon’s Ogilvie Raceway was finally able to kick off their 2023 race season under sunny skies and temps in the mid 70’s. In addition to WISSOTA Modifieds, Super Stocks, Midwest Modifieds, Street Stocks and Hornets, the Structural Buildings WISSOTA Late Model Challenge Series made their first visit to the Big O on Saturday and put on a full night of great racing. David Swearingen, Braden Brauer, Brady Uotinen, Joe Wilber and Cole Chernosky took feature wins with Pat Doar grabbing the WISSOTA Late Model win.

The WISSOTA Street Stocks were the first feature event of the season with Braden Brauer and Justin Pogones on row one. As the green waved, Brauer claimed the early lead, but Pogones and Andrew Hanson kept close. Hanson worked the inside of Pogones while Brauer stretched his lead. After a caution, Brauer continued to set the pace while Jeff Ekdahl joined the battle for second. Pogones, Hanson and Ekdahl fought for second until Hanson secured the point. Hanson quickly tracked down Brauer while just five laps remained. Hanson kept pressure on the #34JR, however Braden Brauer led the remaining laps and took the win. Andrew Hanson, Justin Pogones, Jeff Ekdahl and Kyle Howland grabbed top points.

As the WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds took the green, David Swearingen grabbed the immediate lead. Cole Boston held second while Corey Mehrwerth slid into third. Mehrwerth dropped to the inside of Boston for second, but Boston held the point. Drivers in positions two through six raced side by side while Swearingen continued to sail around the Big O. As top drivers began to find themselves in lapped traffic, the yellow waved and the field was reset eliminating Swearingen’s seven second lead. Swearingen, Mehrwerth and Boston were nearly three-wide in the curve as the race resumed, but Swearingen regained the lead. Mehrwerth dropped low on the track and challenged Swearingen as laps passed. Corey Mehrwerth kept after Swearingen’s #5 the remainder of the event, but David Swearingen kept him back for the win. Corey Mehrwerth settled for second with Cole Chernosky, Zach Benson and Travis Schulte rounded out the top five.

27 of the best Late Model drivers in the region took the clay for the Structural Buildings WISSOTA Late Model Challenge Series 40 lap feature event. Andy Jones jumped out to the early lead with Josh Zimpel and Darrell Nelson in tow. With 10 laps in the books, drivers settled into positions and Jones began to put drivers a lap down. Zimpel and Nelson closed the gap with Jones as they found themselves in lapped traffic. Nelson snuck into second and Dave Mass slid into third. Zimpel came back to Mass’ side and they battled with slower drivers mixed in. A quick caution slowed and reset the field, but as they retook the green, Zimpel worked the higher groove and shot by Jones. Zimpel led the drivers back to the line following another caution with Jones and Pat Doar on his bumper. Zimpel, Jones and Doar raced three-wide down the back chute as the race resumed, and Zimpel again emerged with the lead. Doar secured the second point and with just a couple laps to go, he closed the gap with Zimpel. The top two drivers were door to door as they rounded the curve in one and two, and as they entered the backstretch, Pat Doar broke away to take the checkers and the win. Josh Zimpel grabbed second while Darrell Nelson, Andy Jones and Jake Redetzke claimed top points.

The WISSOTA Modifieds took the clay for the next feature with a pair of rookies on row one. Brady Uotinen and Brandon Mehrwerth sped off when the green waved and Uotinen was the leader at the end of one. Uotinen stretched out his lead to two seconds while Don Eischens slid into second. Clayton Wagamon and Shane Sabraski latched onto Esichens’ rear and the three of them fought or second. Wagamon used the high groove to snag second and as they encountered lapped traffic, Wagamon chipped away at Uotinen’s lead. Wagamon and Uotinen were close for the lead, and with 3 laps to go, Sabraski joined the battle. Uotinen continued to lead but felt the heat of Sabraski and Wagamon. They raced three-wide down the back chute the final lap, and as they came to the checkers, Brady Uotinen crossed first and took his first career WISSOTA Modified feature win. Shane Sabraski, Clayton Wagamon, Don Eischens and Jody Bellefeuille snagged points two through five.

Cole Chernosky took the early lead in the WISSOTA Super Stock feature, but Jordan Hinkemeyer and Dexton Koch were on his bumper. Hinkemeyer snagged the second point, but drivers remained close, and he found Koch and Shane Sabraski at his sides. Koch made the pass on the high side for second and began to chase Chernosky. With the race half over, Koch slowly reeled in Chernosky while Sabraski secured third. Chernosky caught a slower driver and Koch took advantage as they came out of turn four three-wide. Koch drove down the front chute first but Chernosky shot back to his door. As they came around the final curve, Koch and Chernosky were nose to nose. The margin of difference was just 0.117 seconds, and Cole Chernosky grabbed the win. Dexton Koch settled for second while Shane Sabraski, Jordan Hinkemeyer and Denis Czech earned top points.

The WISSOTA Hornets took the clay for the final race of the night with Tony Jenson and Brandon Anderson on the front row. Jenson sped into the top point when the green waved, but Joe Wilber quickly took second and then the lead. Drivers began to settle into positions and space out as they rounded the track surface. Joe Wilber had his cruise set once he took the lead and didn’t look back as he won the final race of opening night. Other top points went to Brady Albertson, Brandon Nyberg, Tony Jenson and Brandon Anderson.

Next weekend, the 18th Annual Wehrs Machine & Racing Products Minnesota Modified Nationals presented by FYE Motorsports will be at Wagamon’s Ogilvie Raceway. The event will take place on both Saturday and Sunday nights with full programs featuring WISSOTA Modifieds, Midwest Modifieds, Mod Fours, Super Stocks and Hornets. Both nights will begin at 7pm and feature the best Modifieds in the region.

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