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I-80 Speedway (NE)
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Subject: Highlights from season opener 4/26/19
Posted byMessage

I-80 Speedway Rep
Posted on 4/27/2019 1:22:35 AM

Leonard, Dennis, Stapleton, Thompson, Bruck, Bridge, and Berghahn take Season Opener Honors
By Anthony Ainslie

Friday officially marked the beginning of the 2019 regular season at I-80 Speedway as all seven weekly racing classes were all in action for the first time.
A massive field of 153 cars across I-80’s seven NASCAR Whelen All-American Series racing divisions made the trip out to Greenwood to kick off the regular points season. The cooling temperatures and gusty winds made for a dry slick racing surface making it a challenge for some of the higher powered racers.
Friday’s first super late model feature was led flag to flag by Josh Leonard. The Gibbon, Nebraska driver is in his first full year of super late model racing, and he held off Jason O’Brien to pick up opening night honors.
O’Brien settled for second while Corey Zeitner, defending track champion Bill Leighton Jr., and Andrew Kosiski rounded out the top five.
In the modified division, Prescott, Iowa’s Jesse Dennis was top of the class. Dennis had an early challenge from Mark Leiting and then by Jordy Nelson, but Dennis held them off and eventually pulled away to a convincing feature win.
Nelson and Leiting took second and third while Justin Zeitner and Todd Boulware rounded out the top five.
Friday’s stock car main event had most of the closest racing of the night. Shane Stutzman led the opening five laps before Eric Rempel took the lead on lap six. Rempel took the lead right before the first of two cautions came out.
A hard wreck between two cars set up a five-lap dash to the finish. Rempel led coming to the restart, but by the next time around, Corey Stapleton took command. The Denison, Iowa driver held off an onslaught of tough drivers to take home the feature win. Rempel took second while Dusty Blake, Matt Boucher and Dr. Nick Steir rounded out the top five.
The sport mod feature was dominated by Sioux City, Iowa’s Cody Thompson. While he led the way, Shawn Harker, Kevin Zeitner and Arie Schouten had an excellent battle for the second postiton. The trio traded the runner-up the position all throughout the race.
Thompson took the win, and when it was all said and done, Harker took second while Zeitner took third. Matt Andrews and Tyler Nerud finished out the top five.
Friday’s Bragging Lights late model feature came right to the wire. A.J. Jorgensen led the opening five circuits before two-time and defending track champion Jacob Brown took over.
Brown led the race until a caution came out on the final lap setting up a green-whit-checkered finish. On the restart, Brown slipped coming off turn two allowing Jake Bridge to blow past for the lead.
Bridge went on to take the win while Brown had to settle for second. Andrew Tilley, Kale Kosiski and Brett Hopp rounded out the top five.
The hobby stock feature had three cars slug it out for the win. In the closing laps, defending track champion Luke Ramsey and Zach Olmstead went side by side for the lead while Kevin Bruck followed close behind.
Olmstead and Ramsey got into each other multiple times, and with three laps remaining, Bruck made the winning pass on both drivers. The Dunlap, Iowa native went on to capture his first win at I-80 Speedway of his career.
Ramsey and Olmstead finished second and third while Brent Ricker and Mike Hanson rounded out the top five.
The sport compact feature was a nail biter between former track champion Denny Berghahn Jr. and Nathan Wahlstrom.
In the closing laps. Berghahn led while Wahlstrom through some big-time slide jobs through the corners hoping one would stick.
When the dust settled, it was Berghahn coming home with another feature win at I-80. Wahlstrom took second, his personal best at I-80, while Evan Hrabik, Shawn Hein and Dustin Grout made up the top five.


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