Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Dells Rains Out, Alex Leads Early at Slinger, Wins Fast Dash!

By Dan Margetta

Race Video Highlights: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yyyyzExyz0s

Slinger, Wis.--July 24--Steve Apel drove to his first feature win of the season Sunday night in the 60-lap super late model main event at the Slinger Super Speedway.

John DeAngelis Jr. And Brad Mueller led the field to the green flag with Mueller charging out to the early lead. Alex Prunty dogged Mueller from second until he was able to make the pass for the lead on lap 11 in turn two. Behind the top two DeAngelis held third with Chris Blawat and Brad Keith close behind. Mike Egan's spun car in turn 2 on lap 21 produced the caution flag with Alex Prunty leading over Mueller, Blawat, DeAngelis, and Steve Apel who moved into the top five. Mueller was on the button from the inside on the restart and he retook the top spot as racing resumed with Prunty falling to fourth behind Blawat and Apel. By the halfway mark, Apel worked his way into the lead, bringing Blawat with him into second. Mueller held down third whole Dennis Prunty joined the leaders in fourth just ahead of Alex Prunty in fifth. The caution flag flew on lap 37 for Brad Keith's loose car and Apel maintained the lead on the restart while Dennis Prunty charged by Blawat for second. Ryan DeStefano clipped the grass near turn three on lap 46 and the caution waved again. Apel maintained the lead as the green flag appeared and Dennis Prunty tried to challenge but his car got out of shape and he saved it entering turn one on lap 48 as Blawat moved to second. Blawat pressured Apel for the lead but couldn't make a pass as Apel drove to his first feature victory of the season. Chris Blawat finished second and Dennis Prunty was third. Alex Prunty finished fourth and Mitch McGrath had his best finish in fifth.

Tim Lampman, Dave McCardle, and Alex Prunty each won super late model heat races and Chris Blawat was the fastest qualifier at 11.397 seconds.

Thursday, July 14, 2016


-KDDP Board Notes Importance of Competition Level, Social Media Skills & Community Involvement-
CONCORD, N.C. (July 8, 2016) – In somewhat of a surprise, the early leader in the 2016 Kulwicki Driver Development Program’s “Kulwicki Cup” point standings has yet to win a race this season.  In the organization’s initial evaluation, which considered the seven drivers’ on and off-track performances from April 1 through June 30, Wisconsin’s Alex Prunty holds a slim 12 point lead over Maine’s Dave Farrington Jr.  California driver Jeremy Doss is in third and closing the gap.
            The early standings look like this:
1) – Alex Prunty – 463
2) – Dave Farrington Jr. – 451
3) – Jeremy Doss – 411
4) – Quin Houff – 319
5) – Michael Ostdiek – 280
6) – Cody Haskins – 269
7) – Brandon Setzer – 148
These seven drivers are competing this season for the 2016 “Kulwicki Cup” award that will pay one driver a $54,439 bonus and a special one-of a kind trophy at the organization’s banquet that will be held in Charlotte in December.
“I think the current points certainly reflect the importance of all the factors that go into winning our prestigious award,” said KDDP executive director Tom Roberts.  “I applaud our advisory board for how much value they placed on community involvement, social media activities and other off-track functions.
            “Alex Prunty leading in the early standings this season also indicates to me that the board is placing significance on how stiff the competition is where the drivers are competing,” said Roberts.  “I don’t have a vote, but I have to say that the tremendous job that Alex has done with his karting project, his social media activities and his overall communication skills have been impressive.  He’s still looking for his first win in super late models, but he’s finished runner-up numerous times and in the top-five in five of his 10 races so far.  Slinger Speedway might just be the toughest track to win on in America these days.
            “Dave Farrington made everyone associated with the KDDP smile when he picked up his first-ever feature win at Beech Ridge Motor Speedway a few weeks back,” Roberts said.  “Dave is a super representative for our organization on and off the track.  Dave’s not only battling for the Beech Ridge and Maine State NASCAR championships, he is also out there competing in the highly-competitive PASS North Series and on the American Canadian Tour.
            “Jeremy Doss is really turning heads out West,” said Roberts.  “He’s also learning how important his off-track representation of the KDDP is.  Quin Houff has already won on the tough CARS Tour circuit and I personally applaud him for the tremendous work he is doing with the Duke Cancer Institute.  Michael Ostdiek is also involved in a karting project and we can’t wait to see his Alan Kulwicki retro 1990 color scheme.  Cody Haskins goes out of his way to take part in worthwhile local activities around his North Georgia home and now he is giving the KDDP some additional exposure as he has started racing over at Myrtle Beach.  Brandon Setzer competed in only eight races during our first judging period.  He appears to be getting his early-season slump behind him and I’m thinking he may really surprise folks during the next two months.”
            The KDDP points system is based on a combination of judging input from members of the advisory board and the drivers’ on-track performance.  Board members are asked to rank the drivers from first to seventh in their job of representing the organization and points are awarded for those rankings.  Each voter is given 10 discretionary “bonus” points to award the drivers for “exceptional contributions” to the program.  Community engagement, program representation and social media activities account for as much as 60 percent of the points total.  The remaining 40 percent of the points come from actual racing statistics. Race wins award 10 points, with 2nd-5th-place finishes getting 6 points, 6th-10th 4 points, 11th-15th 2 points and 15th-plus 1 point.
“Since the competition part of our points system is based on a driver’s 15 best finishes this season, it is way too early to count any of our drivers out as far as the Kulwicki Cup goes,” said Roberts.  “Some of the competitors are really just now getting their seasons going full throttle.  It will be very interesting to see what these drivers can accomplish on and off the track in the next couple of months.
            “The KDDP would like to extend its condolences to the family of board member Dennis Czarnyszka, who passed away unexpectedly on June 25,” said Roberts.  “We would also like to say a special thanks to Ty Majeski, our inaugural Kulwicki Cup champion last year, for honoring Dennis by voting for him in our first points update of the season.”initial points report.”
For all the latest news in short track racing, we invite you to visit Speed51.com, the official media partner of the Kulwicki Driver Development Program.  Follow them on Twitter at @speed51dotcom and visit their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/speed51.
# # #
For additional information on the Kulwicki Driver Development Program, please visit the official website at www.kulwickiddp.com. Catch us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pages/KDDP/435099609983775?ref=hl and follow us on Twitter at @KulwickiDDP.
About the KDDP:
The Kulwicki Driver Development Program (KDDP) was established in 2014 by the family of late NASCAR Champion Alan Kulwicki for the purpose of helping worthy drivers toward reaching their dreams while at the same time keeping Alan’s memory and legacy alive.  The Program provides drivers with financial assistance along with support in publicity, marketing, sponsorship development, industry networking and relationship building.  Based in Concord, N.C., the KDDP is a non-profit organization with the mission of playing a significant role in developing the next era of America’s short-track racers while educating new generations about the life, passion and values of the 1992 NASCAR Champion.
Tom Roberts – trpr@ix.netcom.com(256)508-2595
Mark Horn – markhorn@mvalaw.com – (704) 331-3540

12th to 4th in Final Event Before Slinger Nationals!

By Dan Margetta
Slinger, Wis., July 10--—Rob Braun outdueled Dennis Prunty following a restart with 20 laps to go and drove to his second super late model feature victory of the season Sunday night at the Slinger Super Speedway in the 60-lap main event.

“There’s so much horsepower in the pits here tonight with Mark Feiler, Toby Nuttleman, and Jon Reynolds Sr,” Braun told the crowd from victory lane as he touched on the star studded crew chiefs who were on hand to help their drivers as they prepared for the upcoming Slinger Nationals, “I was chatting it up with them and picking their brains earlier and the next thing you know, I found a little speed…it was awesome!”

Brad Keith and Brad Mueller paced the field to the green flag with Mueller charging to the early lead from the outside groove and Rob Braun also using a strong outside run to nail down second place. Keith and Chris Blawat ran nose to tail on the inside in third and fourth respectively while Ty Majeski and Dennis Prunty raced for fifth place in their tire tracks. On lap four Keith’s car swung wide off turn four directly in front of Blawat and he caught it but as they entered turn one, his car kicked loose again and went into a long slide through the corner after very slight contact from Blawat before ending up in the infield off the backstretch to draw the first caution flag. Mueller chose the outside groove and Braun went to the low lane while Dennis Prunty and Majeski each chose the high side which opened up the inside line for Jamie Wallace and Gary LaMonte as the field formed for the restart. Mueller and Braun intensely raced for the lead as racing resumed with Mueller holding tough on the outside and Braun gritting it out from the low lane. Mueller eventually began to fade up top and Braun took command as Prunty quickly filled the gap to take second. Wallace and LaMonte also got around Mueller who continued to lose ground in the outside lane while Alex Prunty and Majeski began to challenge for the top five. On lap 13, Mueller had power steering issues and he dropped from competition as the resulting fluid on the racetrack produced the caution flag with Braun leading over Dennis Prunty, Wallace, LaMonte, Alex Prunty, and Majeski. Braun and Prunty leaned on each other for the lead as racing resumed while LaMonte and Majeski remained in their tracks as Alex Prunty, Jamie Wallace, and John DeAngelis Jr. all battled for the fifth spot. Dennis Prunty eventually worked outside lane hard enough to take the lead from Braun on lap 18 and the field settled into single file formation during the middle stages of the race. Dennis Prunty maintained the lead out front over Braun while LaMonte held third solidly and Alex Prunty and Wallace advanced forward when Majeski left the speedway on lap 38 and retired from the event. Tim Lampman’s car looped around in turn one on lap 40 while racing in front of Randy Schuler and the caution flag appeared for a third time. Dennis Prunty chose the outside lane with Braun taking to the low side and as racing resumed, they both renewed their side by side battle for the top spot with LaMonte, Alex Prunty, DeAngelis, and Wallace all racing hard behind them. After several laps of door to door racing, Braun prevailed on the inside and Dennis Prunty slid in behind him in an attempt to make another late charge at the lead. Braun would not be denied over the closing laps and he captured his second super late model feature victory of the season over Dennis Prunty and Gary LaMonte. Alex Prunty finished fourth and John DeAngelis Jr. was fifth. Mitch McGrath turned in one of his strongest performances of the season to finish sixth ahead of Jamie Wallace and Steve Apel, who drove Travis Dassow’s machine to an eighth place finish after experiencing engine issues with his own car after the heat races. Brad Keith and Chris Blawat rounded out the top ten finishers.

Sunday night was our last Super Late Model Show before the prestigious $10,000 to win Slinger Nationals, by far our biggest race of the year! We have off this Sunday, so we will spend this week going through and rebuilding everything on the car preparing for the Nationals. Anything and everything will be looked over, including new valve springs and rocker arm inspections, to rear end inspection and rebuild, and everything in-between! Want to make sure the car is 100% ready to go!!

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Alex Earns 1st Career SLM Slinger Fastest Qualifier Award!

By Dan Margetta
Slinger, Wis., July 3--—In a traditional Slinger Speedway battle, Dennis Prunty held off Steve Apel to nail down his fourth super late model feature victory of the season Sunday night in the Interstate Sawing Independence Day 75

Alex Prunty set fast time for the first time in his super late model career by turning in a lap at 11.299 seconds.

John DeAngelis Jr. raced to the early lead at the drop of the green flag as the field quickly fell under the caution flag on lap two when the second and third place cars of Fred Winn and Rob Braun tangled entering turn one triggering an incident that also collected Rich Loch. DeAngelis returned to the lead on the restart over Nick Wagner and Brad Keith while the outside line began to move forward and Brad Mueller, Dennis Prunty, Gary LaMonte, and Steve Apel all took advantage of the high side to grab third through sixth respectively. As they sorted out, Dennis Prunty wasted little time in first moving around Mueller for third and then Nick Wagner for second as DeAngelis continued to set the pace. As Prunty began to track down DeAngelis for the lead, LaMonte pressured Mueller for fourth as right behind them Apel and Casey Johnson gained spots after prevailing in an intense battle with Brad Keith and Alex Prunty. Dennis Prunty closed in on DeAngelis for the lead and took some serious looks to the inside of the leader just before the caution waved on lap 23 when Rob Braun’s car spun while racing with Mitch McGrath off turn two. DeAngelis chose the inside lane for the restart and Dennis Prunty used the outside lane to stay even with the leader as racing resumed. Prunty eventually ducked back in line as LaMonte and Apel advanced to third and fourth respectively. Prunty eventually worked his way alongside DeAngelis on the inside lane and took the lead after several laps of door to door racing as LaMonte closed in on the leaders from third. LaMonte then maneuvered his way past DeAngelis for second as Apel, Mueller, and Casey Johnson took over the fourth through sixth spots when Nick Wagner’s car washed high off turn four. The caution flag waved for the third time on lap 46 when Grant Griesbach’s car looped around in turn four with Prunty leading over LaMonte, DeAngelis, Apel, Mueller, and Johnson. Prunty chose the outside for the restart and he remained the leader as LaMonte couldn’t formulate a challenge with his car pinned down on the inside. Apel used the outer groove to advance his way around DeAngelis for third while Casey Johnson moved into fourth, dispatching Mueller into a battle for fifth with Chris Blawat and Jeff Holtz. While racing side by side, Blawat and Holtz ran up on Mueller exiting turn four and side contact between them sent Blawat’s car spinning into the infield as the caution flag waved on lap 55. Once again Prunty charged to the lead from the outside as racing resumed while both Apel and Johnson took advantage of LaMonte not being able to keep his car glued to the inside lane to race into second and third respectively. Prunty scooted away to a comfortable lead while Johnson pressured Apel for second. A tandem spin between Grant Griesbach and Bradley Kossow in turn four on lap 70 drew the caution flag and set up a five lap shootout between Prunty, Apel, and Johnson for the victory. Apel gave a valiant effort in the closing laps but Prunty was too strong from the outside and he drove to his fourth feature victory of the season. John DeAngelis prevailed in an intense battle for third with Casey Johnson while Chris Blawat finished fifth. Brad Mueller finished sixth followed by Alex Prunty and Gary LaMonte while Nick Wagner and Mitch McGrath rounded out the top ten.

James Swan won the 30-lap super late model semi-feature over Ryan DeStefano and Mike Egan as they along with fourth place finisher Dalton Zehr transferred to the main event. Jerry Eckhardt finished fifth. Super late model heat race victories went to Ryan Farrell, Jon Reynolds Jr., and Brad Keith and Alex Prunty set fast time for the first time in his super late model career by turning in a lap at 11.299 seconds.