Monday, May 21, 2018

ALEX PRUNTY GETS WIN FOR MOM IN THE ALAN KULWICKI MEMORIAL!


By Dan Margetta
 Slinger, Wis., May 20—Just prior to the start of the Slinger Speedway racing season, Alex Prunty’s mother suffered a brain aneurysm and Sunday night was the first time she was at the track since being released from the hospital. It made for an emotional night as Prunty won his first super late model feature of the year and added his name to the prestigious list of winners of the Alan Kulwicki Memorial.

“It’s unbelievable and it’s the first race my mom was able to make after a brain aneurysm and she has been in the hospital for a long time and we’re just happy to have her back,” Prunty told the crowd from victory lane, “The Alan Kulwicki Memorial is awesome as obviously there are a lot of big names who have won and with the Kulwicki Driver Development Program and everything those guys have done for me, there are just a lot of emotions going through my head right now.”

Prunty took the lead from defending Kulwicki Memorial winner Conrad Morgan just after a restart on lap 27 and then had to hold off numerous challenges from Dennis Prunty who had won the first two super late model features and was undefeated at the track in 2018.

“It wasn’t bad but I started back farther and had a long ways to go and burned up my tires,” Dennis Prunty stated after his second place finish, “And I knew if I touched him he would spin out so I figured I would stay off him and do the best I could.”

“We’re getting there,“ third place finisher Steve Apel said after the race, “I just kind of fell back and was trying to ride and didn’t want to really get involved with the top two, but all in all the car is in one piece and the nose is clean.”

Pole-sitter Tim Lampman paced the first two laps before Conrad Morgan took command from the outside on lap three, bringing Alex Prunty along with him into second. Chris Blawat and Gary LaMonte also made their way by Lampman to move into third and fourth and a few laps later, Dennis Prunty and Steve Apel joined them as Morgan continued to lead over Alex Prunty. The running order behind the top two shuffled as first Apel nudged Lamonte for position in turn four and a lap later, Dennis Prunty used a similar move to get by Blawat and when everything sorted out, Prunty had third ahead of Apel, LaMonte, and Blawat. The first and only caution flag of the event occurred on lap 26 for a tangle between Rich Loch and Tim Lampman in turn four which allowed the rest of the field to close in on Morgan and Alex Prunty.

Morgan chose the inside lane for the restart, leaving Alex Prunty the outer groove which proved beneficial as Prunty charged from the top side as racing resumed, completing the pass for the lead the next lap around. The outside lane became the preferred place to be as Dennis Prunty, Apel, LaMonte, and Brad Mueller all used it to advance forward. In the final laps, Dennis Prunty ran down Alex Prunty and made several attempts to pass on the inside but each time was denied as Alex Prunty was able to power off the turns to maintain the lead. With eight laps to go, Dennis Prunty tried an inside move once again but his car washed loose in turn two and as he regained control, Alex Prunty scooted away with the lead. Alex Prunty could not be caught from there and he drove to his first super late model feature victory of the season, leaving Dennis Prunty to settle for second while Steve Apel took the checkered flag in third. Gary LaMonte finished fourth and Brad Mueller was fifth. Conrad Morgan crossed the line in sixth followed by Chris Blawat and Ryan DeStefano in seventh and eighth respectively while Grant Griesbach and Brad Keith rounded out the top ten.

Super late model heat races were won by Rich Loch and Alex Prunty while Gary LaMonte was the fastest qualifier after touring the speedway in 11.243 seconds.

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

2nd Place in Week 2


By Dan Margetta

 Slinger, Wis., May 6—Dennis Prunty outdueled his nephew Alex Prunty on a late race restart and drove to his second consecutive super late model feature victory at the Slinger Super Speedway in the 60-lap main event Sunday afternoon. 

Nick Wagner and David McCardle brought the field to the green flag with Wagner launching into the early lead as Alex Prunty settled into second and Gary LaMonte into third as both McCardle and Brad Keith became caught in the outside groove. Chris Blawat and Dennis Prunty also slipped by on the inside to take over fourth and fifth respectively as Wagner began to feel pressure for the lead from Alex Prunty. Alex Prunty worked his way to Wagner’s inside to complete the pass for the lead while LaMonte followed in is tire tracks and into second place. Blawat and Dennis Prunty raced alongside each other over fourth directly behind Wagner with Blawat’s car twitching loose off turn two causing him to lose ground as Dennis Prunty worked his way past Wagner and into third.
Gary LaMonte tracked down Alex Prunty for the top spot and began to make numerous stabs at the lead by edging the nose of his car to the inside of Prunty’s left rear fender. Each time however, Alex Prunty was able to fend off the challenges with a strong run off the turns as the side by side racing up front allowed Dennis Prunty to catch the top two. As the leaders approached lapped traffic at the halfway point, LaMonte tried to squeeze in behind Alex Prunty and just ahead of Dennis Prunty and in doing so made slight contact with Alex Prunty’s rear fender, sending him into a spin off turn two to draw the caution flag. LaMonte “tapped out” at the start/finish line, taking the blame for the incident and allowing Alex Prunty to maintain the lead.
Alex Prunty chose the outside lane for the restart and as racing resumed he was able to fend off the challenges Dennis Prunty gave him from the inside lane while Chris Blawat and Conrad Morgan raced over third place behind them. Morgan developed a severe tire rub and had to exit the speedway, leaving Brad Keith to move into fourth place just ahead of the battle for fifth between Wagner and Ryan DeStefano. While the racing stabilized up front, Gary Lamonte was making a charge from the back of the field and he was able to advance all the way to fourth place with ten laps to go when the caution flag waved again for a tangle between David McCardle and Nick Wagner in turn one.

Once again Alex Prunty chose the outside for the restart, leaving the inside lane for Dennis Prunty and after an aborted attempt at going back to green, the pair raced side by side into turn one as racing resumed. This time around Dennis Prunty held tough on the inside and he was able to muscle into the lead after several laps of side by side battling. Alex Prunty was able to maintain second place by sliding in directly behind Dennis Prunty with LaMonte right on his tail in third. The top three remained unchanged all the way to the checkered flag with Dennis Prunty scoring the victory over Alex Prunty and Gary LaMonte. Chris Blawat finished fourth while Brad Keith crossed the finish line in fifth. Ryan DeStefano finished sixth followed by Mike Held and Nick Wagner in seventh and eighth place respectively while Jerry Eckhardt and David McCardle rounded out the top ten.
Super late model heat race victories were captured by Alex Prunty and Brad Keith while Dennis Prunty was the fastest qualifier with a lap of 11.265 seconds.





 

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Large Piece of Debris Takes Alex Out of the Slinger Opener

With all the work we did in the off season and early testing, we decided to go to the track with the new setup we have been developing. Overall, I was very happy with it, and it was definitely an improvement from what I had last year. With a new setup comes new ways to adjust the car, and different handling responses to different track conditions. With there being many more cars on the track this weekend, and the track starting to rubber in, we just got extremely tight in the center of the corner (Did not want to rotate), and would end up qualifying 7th of 25 cars.

After making an adjustment for the heat race, and going from 9th to 4th in 10 laps, I was confident I had a good car to battle with week 1. We started 7th in the feature, and quickly worked our way up to the 3rd/4th position. There was a lot of cautions, that I personally think were caused by the wet track. Like I talked about last week, the track has been bleeding water, and all that water is puddled in the bottom apron area in turns 3&4. Anytime you looked under another car, it would splash all the water up on to the racing surface, and bad things happened from there.

We had a great run going battling for 3rd, and the car I was outside of washed up the track and knocked us back 2 positions. A caution would come out about 2 laps later, as a car near the rear of the field with damage lost his full exhaust pipe, and was laying in the middle of the track. Unfortunately before we could get slowed down for the caution, I was the unlucky car that caught the exhaust pipe right in the middle of my radiator. With the cars in front of me swerving at the last second, I never seen it. That video is attached below, you can see it fly off the red 17 car a lap before the caution. The leader actually hits it first, and it was just flying around from there.

The hole in the radiator would end our day, as we were leaking water badly. 15th position