Story by Kelly Ninas
The racing action was hot and heavy during opening night at Dawson County Raceway in front of a jam packed house of race fans eager to get the 2019 racing campaign underway on Sunday evening during the Platte Valley Auto Mart Night at the Races held in Lexington, Nebraska.
Looking to start the season off on the right foot at Dawson County Raceway were a large contingency of competitors hoping to drive their way to Coca Cola Victory Lane. The foursome of Jordan Grabouski, David Johnson, Braxton Berry and Ramsey Meyer all were beaming with excitement to be victors on Sunday evening in Lexington.
Being among the leaders for much of the feature and finishing strong in the final laps was Jordan Grabouski of Beatrice to win the Holbein Lawn Service/K Lawn IMCA Modified Feature. Grabouski started on the outside of the second row and was among the leaders contending for a podium finish from the onset. Grabouski was able to work his magic on the top groove to get into the lead on the 12th lap and never look back as he sliced and diced through lap traffic to claim the victory. Starting on the pole and setting a blistering pace for the first 11 laps was Veteran Wheelman David Murray Jr of Oberlin, Kansas. Murray was able to work the bottom groove to near perfection for the first half of the feature event and then was able to continue to work through traffic to hold onto a podium position in second place overall. Colton Osborn of Cozad was among the top five for much of the feature event, showcasing great consistency lap after lap to earn a third place finish for his efforts. Murray Jr, Tyler Frye of Belleville, Kansas and the Magic Man from Malcom, Mike Densberger were the heat race winners for the Modified Division.
Riding the cushion and keeping his momentum at a high level throughout the feature was the formula for success for David Johnson of Columbus as he snared the lead on the sixth lap and drove his way to the winners circle in the Platte Valley Auto Mart IMCA Northern Sport Mods Feature event. Johnson started on the outside of the front row and was able to take advantage of a couple of caution flags that bunched up the field to his favor. Once he was able to drive his way into the lead, he never trailed to claim the win. Putting together a late charge towards the front, Justin Svoboda of David City was able to earn his spot on the podium as the runner-up after starting in the fourth row at the onset. Dakota Sproul of Hays, Kansas was able to flex his muscle behind the wheel of his hot rod to be scored in third place as the checkered flags were waved. Jarred Hackler of Hastings, North Platte’s Tony Schultz and Justin Gimpel of Harvard were able to start their nights off right with heat race wins.
In one of the most heated and action packed features of the night, when all the smoke cleared, it was Jordan Grabouski of Beatrice earning the Levanders Body Shop IMCA Stock Car Feature victory. Grabouski was able to grasp the lead on lap 13 and hold off all challenges to garner top honors. Grabouski started the feature event on the outside of the seventh row, so he had to be methodical with his passes through traffic to get to the lead, where he stayed throughout the rest of the feature. Putting the pressure on the leaders in the last half of the spotlighted race was the Norton Nightmare Casey Woken of Norton, Kansas as he was able to get his car to prosper in the bottom groove with good speed throughout the feature. Woken started in the sixth row and was able to work his way into contention near the midway point of the feature, to cross the finish line in second place overall when the checkered flags were waved. The Harlan Hustler Mike Nichols of Harlan, Iowa started the feature in the fifth row and was able to use a few of the restarts from cautions to ‘drive where they’re not’ to pass a great number of competitors to get within the top five. Mike Nichols was riding the cushion for all it was worth during the closing laps in an attempt to catch the top two finishers. Nichols was forced to settle with third place accolades. Winning the heat races in the highly-competitive Stock Car division were Troy Burkhart of Hays, Kansas; Milford’s Shane Stutzman and Kyle Pfiefer of Hills City, Kansas. Pfiefer was the early leader for the first 12 laps of the feature and he recovered from the loss of the lead to finish fourth overall.
Starting up front and staying up front, Braxton Berry of Colby, Kansas was on cruise control in the front of the field to lead every lap on the way to the Coca Cola Victory Lane in the Overton Sand and Gravel IMCA Hobby Stock Feature. Berry started on the outside of the front row and was able to avoid incident and have clean air for his hot rod throughout the feature. Doing his best to keep up with the hotshoe was Tathan Burkhart of Hays, Kansas who started on the outside of the second row and was able to drive his way onto the podium in second place overall. Jeff Ware of Columbus was able to juke and jive his way through the traffic at the front of the field to be among the leaders for much of the feature race to finish third overall after starting in the third row at the drop of the green flag. Earning heat race stickers in the IMCA Hobby Stock division was Ware, Berry and Brady Henderson of Curtis.
Making their return to the Dawson County Raceway for the 2019 season were the Plum Creek Motors IMCA Sport Compacts. Driving his way onto the podium in fine fashion was Ramsey Meyer of Pierce. Meyer won the heat race as well, which in turn gave him a good starting position at the front of the lineup for the feature event. Meyer was able to keep his elbows up and the gas pedal down to cruise his way to the victory. Coming across the finish line in second place overall was Terry Tritt of York. Tritt started the feature event on the inside of the third row when the green flag dropped. Gothenburg’s Quincy Eggleston was able to rock and roll in his hot rod to finish third overall, staying among the leaders throughout the feature as he started on the inside of the second row.
All five of the IMCA divisions return to action at Dawson County Raceway on Sunday, June 2nd. Gates open at 3:30 with hotlaps at 5 p.m. and the drop of the green flag at 6 p.m.
–IMCA Modified Feature: 1. 30-Jordan Grabouski; 2. 97m-David Murray Jr; 3. 50c-Colton Osborn; 4. 7-Clay Money; 5. 17j-Jeremy Frenier; 6. 60iv-Anthony Roth; 7. 55-Tyler Frye; 8. 7x-Justin Gregg; 9. 81-Mike Densberger; 10. 16-Austin Svoboda.
Heat Races: 97m-Murray Jr; 55-Frye; 81-Densberger.
–IMCA Northern Sport Modified Feature: 1. 97-David Johnson; 2. 16j-Justin Svoboda; 3. 08-Dakota Sproul; 4. 00-Jarred Hackler; 5. 13t-Tyler Andreasen; 6. 1t-Robbie Thome; 7. 22-Matt Andrews; 8. 75-James Roebuck; 9. 714-Scott Styskal; 10. 15k-Jamey Kennicutt.
Heat Races: 00-Hackler; 55-Tony Schultz; 67-Justin Gimpel.
–IMCA Stock Car Feature: 1. 30-Jordan Grabouski; 2. 35jw-Casey Woken; 3. 63-Mike Nichols; 4. 54p-Kyle Pfeifer; 5. 11k-Kyle Clough; 6. 37-Jason Rogers; 7. 1-Chris Heim; 8. 93-Doug Adamy; 9. 6c-Cale Osborn; 10. 25x-Troy Burkhart.
Heat Races: 25x-Burkhart; 22s-Shane Stutzman; 54p-Pfiefer.
–IMCA Hobby Stock Feature: 1. 15b-Braxton Berry; 2. 250-Tathan Burkhart; 3. 83-Jeff Ware; 4. 04-Sal Hernandez; 5. 2w-Luke Wassom; 6. 14jr-Tyler Barribo; 7. 98z-Zach Olmstead; 8. 20b-Brady Henderson; 9. +1-Dan Pittman; 10. R89-Nate Refior.
Heat Races: 83-Ware; 20b-Henderson; 15b-Berry.
–IMCA Sport Compact Feature: 1. 21r-Ramsey Meyer; 2. 5x-Terry Tritt; 3. 7e-Quincy Eggleston; 4. 17n-Alyssa Naber; 5. 85-Justin Smallcomb; 6. 40-Jim Rayburn; 7. 74-Robert Clanton; 8. 26-Marcus Florom.
Heat Race: 21r-Meyer.