Junction Crowns 2014 Champions
By Anthony Ainslie
Five new track champions were crowned at Junction Motor Speedway on Saturday Night.
The Junction crowned its track champions on the final night for points for the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series.
Cory Dumpert sealed up the track title after a wild 25-lap feature in the NASCAR late models. Cory Dumpert charged into the top five early in the race while Steve Kempt was out in front early, but four laps into the race, Alex Humphrey got sized, and that bottled up the field, including Dumpert, who spun out in turn two bringing out the caution flag. Ty Leonard and Jay Norton were also involved. The spin sent Dumpert to the rear of the field on the restart.
As the race continued, Dumpert picked off the drivers one at a time. While Dumpert worked his way back to the front, Alex Humphrey was out in front. With ten laps remaining, Dumpert made it back to the front and passed the 16H of Humphrey for the lead, and from there, Dumpert ran away. The 77 team based out of York, Neb. went to victory lane for the 14th time of the year, the 12th time this season at JMS, and with that, Cory Dumpert became the 2014 NASCAR late model track champion. Dumpert became the third driver in JMS history to win a track championship in two different division. Dumpert won a stock car track title in 2009, and now he has a late model championship.
After 20 action-filled laps, Andy Wilkinson took the checkered flag and the track title in the NASCAR modified division.
A first-lap pileup took out some heavy hitters out of contention for the win, including Kyle Berck who was doing double duty running modifieds and super late models and defending track champion Tyler Iverson.
After the wreck was sorted out, Wilkinson inherited the lead after his teammate Scott Eaton was also taken out in the first-lap crash, and from there, he held off challenges from Jeremy Leiting and Kevin Larkins. Wilkinson sealed the deal on his second career modified track championship at Junction Motor Speedway.
The NASCAR b-mod track championship came down to a battle between Rocky Zimmerman and Steve Swarthout.
In Saturday night’s b-mod feature, Brent Kassik was out in control of the lead. The racing behind Kassik got very interesting when Swarthout and Zimmerman battled in the top five with Jake Neal and Zach Reicks, who started at the rear of the field, powered his way up into the top five.
Just before the halfway mark, Reicks made the pass on Kassik for the lead. The 7R of Reicks from Columbus, Neb. took his first win of the 2014 JMS racing season. Rocky Zimmerman, who was two points ahead of Swarthout in the standings going into Saturday, finished fifth, and with second place finish, Steve Swarthout became the 2014 JMS track champion in the NASCAR b-mods.
Dillon Thompson didn’t have the best of runs, but the Hastings driver did so well throughout the year that he won the NASCAR hobby stock track title just by taking the green flag in the feature. Meanwhile, out front, it was Luke Ramesey.
A scary incident came with nine laps left when Zach Gimpel got sideways down the backstretch. The right side tires dug into the ground, and Gimpel rolled over three times throwing body panels and parts all over the track. Fortunately, Gimpel was uninjured.
Meanwhile, it was all Luck Ramesey. The Bedford, Iowa native took home his fourth feature victory at the Junction.
The 14JR of Tyler Barribo added another feature win to his very successful 2014 season in the NASCAR four-cylinder division at the Junction, and with that victory, the Grand Island driver won his first track championship.
Berck Wins Barn Burner for Seventh SLMR Win
By Anthony Ainslie
SLMR point leader Kyle Berck won his seventh win in a row on a last lap pass at Junction Motor Speedway Saturday Night.
The “Marquette Missile” was behind Tad Pospisil coming down to the white flag in Saturday’s 25-lap feature, but after Pospisil hit a rut between turns one and two, Berck made the winning pass coming out of turn two and held off Pospisil for the win.
A scary incident came on the first lap when Bryce Taylor caught the turn two wall and rolled over one and a half times. Taylor finished the rollover on his lid, and fortunately, the Wood River, Neb. driver was uninjured.
Some late-race controversy came on a couple of occasions. First, Bill Leighton Jr. was sent up into the turn one wall after Berck went up the track to get out of the way of a lapped car. Leighton left on the back end of a tow truck.
Another big incident came when Mike Marushak and J.C. Wyman were battling for fourth. As the two came off of four, Marushak and Wyman made contact, and Wyman was turned and slammed into the frontstretch wall. Wyman wasn’t hurt, but his night was done. So was Marushak’s.
When it was all said and done, Berck took the checkered flag, Pospisil got second, Jason O’Brien came from the 16th spot and finished third, Brian Kosiski took fourth, and Jase Kaser rounded out the top five.
Berck said he admitted that Pospisil had the better car. Fans were on the edges of their seats hoping that Pospisil could break Berck’s winning streak. Berck also said he was happy to have one of his customers doing so well. After having a tough time with his modified the same night, Berck said it was nice to bounce back and keep his winning streak alive. Berck will take his seven-race win streak to Adams County Speedway in Corning, Iowa on Saturday, September 6, and then to Eagle Raceway the following Sunday.
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