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Night 1 of the Minnesota Modified Nationals Kicked Off Thursday Night at the Princeton Speedway, with a Stellar Field of Cars Signing In To Battle.

Night 1 of the Minnesota Modified Nationals Kicked Off Thursday Night at the Princeton Speedway, with a Stellar Field of Cars Signing In To Battle.

By: Tami Jo Kuehn

Princeton, MN (May 23) – For the first time in history, FYE Motorsports’ Minnesota Truck Headquarters Modified Nationals kicked off it’s multi-day race event at the Princeton Speedway. 88 drivers signed in to battle at the ¼ mile bullring, with many drivers making their first ever visit to the small-town racetrack. The night of WISSOTA Dirt Race Action was presented by Wehrs Machine & Superior Fuel, with Johnny Broking, Dean Larson, Dexton Koch, Andy Jones and Bobie Arnes took home the hardware.

Joey Wagamon and Andy Jones took their positions on row one as the first feature of the night began. The WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds took the green, however as they finished lap two, contact occurred, and Erik Gruhlke rolled into the catch fence and landed on the track. Gruhlke was Ok as he climbed from his car, and the race went red for fence repair. The drivers restarted their motors and lined up to resume racing with Andy Jones in the top position. Jones, Jason VandeKamp and Joey Jensen took the top three points and VandeKamp kept close to Jones. Laps passed with VandeKamp glued to Jones’ rear as they encountered slower traffic. With a handful of laps to go, Jones separated from VandeKamp as they worked their way around lapped cars. Andy Jones led the race in it’s entirety and claimed the first win of 2024 Mod Nationals. Jason VandeKamp, Joey Jensen, Blake Adams and Zach Benson rounded out the top five points.

The WISSOTA Super Stocks took the clay, and as the green waved, Dexton Koch and Dylan Nelson battled for the lead. As they crossed the line, Koch claimed first while Joey Jensen slid into third and chased after Nelson. Jensen dove to Nelson’s inside and raced door-to-door as Koch cruised alone out front. A quick caution slowed the drivers and reset the field, with Nelson and Jensen on Koch’s rear. Koch sped away, Nelson took second and surged to Koch’s door. Koch held the lead but felt the heat of Nelson and Jenson at his side and rear. Nelson again charged to Koch’s door and they were nose-to-nose as they raced down the back-chute. All eyes were on Koch and Nelson’s battle for first, when Shane Sabraski took third and slid to Nelson’s side. The top three drivers then spaced out the final lap, and Dexton Koch cruised to the checkers and took the win. Remaining top points went to Dylan Nelson, Shaen Sabraski, Joey Jensen and Dustin Nelson.

A field of 20 of the best WISSOTA Modifieds in the region lined up for the next feature event. Johnny Broking and Eric Lamm brought the drivers to green and Broking claimed the early lead. Lamm and Brandon Copp kept close to Broking but a caution occurred. Broking was alone on the restart, and put a car length between him and the competition. After a few laps, Broking was able to stretch his lead, but another caution slowed the drivers, which put Lamm and Copp back on Broking’s rear. As the race went green, Dave Cain sped to the high side and flew to the doors of Copp and Lamm. The battle for second was three-wide as Cain slid off the track’s edge and Lamm sped ahead in second. Lamm was running the high groove when his car spun in the curve and another yellow was triggered. The race was half over with Broking still in command, but Copp ran the high line and flew to Broking’s door. Copp nosed out the lead, but Broking raced back to Copp’s door and they were side by side around the track. A couple laps passed with the battle between Copp and Broking close, but Broking broke away and secured the lead. Travis Schulte, who started 14th, made his way to third and challenged Copp for second. Schulte made the pass and looked ahead at Broking, but laps came to a close, and Johnny Broking took the win. Travis Schulte settled in second with Brandon Copp, Mike Anderson and JT Johnson wrapping up top points.

Tommy Pogones grabbed the immediate lead as the WISSOTA Mod Fours went green, however Dean Larson kept close. Tommy Bawden grabbed third and raced to the rear of Larson, then slid by him on the low groove. Larson came back to Bawden’s door and they swapped for the second point. The race was half over when the yellow flag appeared and restacked the field. Pogones was alone on the restart with Larson and Bawden to his rear. A series of cautions kept the Mod Fours at a stop and go pace, and after the third restart, Larson edged out the top point. Pogones held second as the final laps went by and the race concluded. Dean Larson took the win with Tommy Pogones, Tommy Bawden, Dustin Holtquist and Tyler Larson as the top finishers.

The WISSOTA Hornets wrapped up the night, and Bobie Arnes took the lead when the green dropped, but Brandon Nyberg kept close in second. Nyberg raced at Arnes’ rear tire, but Arnes continued to hold the lead. Arnes then stretched his lead with the halfway flags displayed. With just three laps to go, Nyberg made his move and raced to Arnes’ side. They were nose to nose down the back-chute with Arnes edging out the lead. The final winner of the night came down to the last lap between the #94A of Arnes and #13 of Nyberg, and Bobie Arnes took the win. Bandon Nyberg, Jenna Hagemann, Josh Backstrom and Scott Erickson wrapped up the top points.

With the final checkers waving, night one of the Minnesota Modified Nationals was in the books. Night’s three and four of the event will bring drivers over to Ogilvie, MN to race at Wagamon’s Ogilvie Raceway and will feature the same drivers, same classes, and the same caliber of talent and side by side race action. Racing will resume at 7:00pm each day.

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