by Tom Wagner
(Sturgeon Bay, WI – 7/10/2010) – Longtime veteran Chris Derenne held off a late charge from Jared Siefert to win his first IMCA Modified feature in several years Saturday night at Prestige Yacht Coatings Thunderhill Raceway in Sturgeon Bay.
Derenne shared the spotlight with five other first time 2010 winners; Kyle Wanner in the IMCA Stock Cars, Rod Solem in the IMCA Northern Sport Mods, Todd Everard in the Super Stocks, Travis Hackett in the IMCA Hobby Stocks and 4 Cylinder rookie Joey Scoon.
While Derenne led all 20 laps of the Modified headliner, the feature checker nearly slipped from his grasp in the final dash as a determined Siefert almost stole the win at the line.
The first half of the race gave little indication how close the finish would be as Derenne worked his way to a sizeable advantage on the field. With Tony Wedelstadt and Randy Markwardt, Jr locked in a battle for second, Derenne put nearly a quarter-lap cushion between he and the lead pack.
Wedelstadt would eventually take control of the runner-up spot and began to pull away from Markwardt when the events first incident took Tim Czarneski not only out of the top five but out of the race altogether.
It took a couple tries, but once the green stayed put, Derenne again found his rhythm and began to edge away. Kyle Kudick now joined Wedelstadt in the battle for second. Kudick gained the edge on the low line, but the two locked together, sliding high out of two with eight laps to go. Siefert and Shawn Kilgore took advantage of the open lane and sped past into second and third. The duo set sail for Derenne, steadily chipping away at the lead.
As the white flag flew, Siefert caught the leader. His chance for the win came on the final series of corners as Derenne left just enough room on the low line for Siefert to move in. But Derenne had enough momentum out of the corner to nip Siefert by less than half a car length at the line.
Kilgore was right in their tracks at the stripe for third, with Kudick righting the ship after the contact with Wedelstadt to take fourth. Last weeks feature winner, James Tebon, turned in another strong performance to round out the top five.
In the IMCA Stock Cars, Wanner didnt had a big lead to lose because he was under constant attack from never less than two cars the entire way.
He took the lead from Eric Malfroid on the second lap, and was quickly joined by Jaime Suchocki and Troy Muench in the struggle for the point. The low line was the preferred place to be for most of the night and thats where Wanner set up shop.
Tucked in on his back bumper was Suchocki, followed closely by Dave Bouche, with Muench working the outside line. Wanner and Muench logged lap after lap, side by side, with Wanner always able to hold the edge.
Muench dropped back slightly in the closing laps to give Wanner the slightest breathing room. Suchocki was never able to get inside of the leader, but did nip Muench at the line for second, with Bouche right there in fourth. Greg Gretz got the best of a race-long match-up with Charlie Kroll and Eugene Gregorich to claim the final top five spot.
In the IMCA Northern Sport Mods, Solem took the lead at the drop of the green, and despite two cautions midway through the event wasnt seriously challenged en route to his win.
Jeff Vlies established second and broke from the pack, but couldnt chase down Solem. Tyler Hackett fended off challenges from Chris Benes and Kelsy Hayes early, then Tom Stark and Jesse Kroll late, for a hard-fought third place finish.
In the Super Stocks, Everards second Hill visit of the year paid dividends as he out-dueled Dave Baenen for the win.
Baenen had taken the top spot from Kipp Burlo on the seventh lap, but lost it to Everard two laps later. Baenen refused to surrender, chasing the eventual winner until the end before posting a season best second.
Tony Everard, James Bosman and division point leader Andy Paluch rounded out the top five.
Travis Hackett passed Travis LuMaye on the second lap, taking charge of the IMCA Hobby Stock finale for good on the way to his first career feature win. C.J. Weckler would move into second three laps later, but couldnt get into position to test Hackett.
Two-time Hobby Stock champ Keith Kickbusch stayed in the hunt the entire way placing third, followed by Roger LaViolette in fourth and LuMaye turning in a solid fifth place run.
Like the IMCA Stock Cars, the 4 Cylinder feature turned in a four-car scramble for the victory in the final lap with Scoon holding off Mike Sargent, Matt Torphy, and Jeremy DuBois to get his first career feature win.
This Saturday night, Dave Hatch Racing will host the show, featuring the second annual IMCA Modified King of the Hill competition sponsored by Packerland Whey.
Prestige Yacht Coatings Thunderhill is located at the John Miles Fair Park on Sturgeon Bays east side, with racing in the six divisions beginning every Saturday night through the summer at 6:00 PM. For more information, visit the tracks website at www.racethunderhill.com.
Thunderhill Raceway Results 7/10/10
IMCA Modified 20 Lap Feature – Chris Derenne, Luxemburg: Jared Siefert, Luxemburg: Shawn Kilgore, New Franken: Kyle Kudick, Two Rivers: James Tebon, Algoma: Russ Reinwald, Juneau
Heat 1 – Siefert: Tebon
Heat 2 – Kilgore: Evan Madden, Algoma
Heat 3 – Kudick: Dan Ratajczak, Frog Station
IMCA Stock Car 20 Lap Feature – Kyle Wanner, Suamico: Jaime Suchocki, Forestville: Troy Muench, Namur: Dave Bouche, Algoma: Greg Gretz, Kewaunee: Charlie Kroll, Forestville
Semi-Feature – Casey Groessl, Algoma: Don Aregoni, Sturgeon Bay: Mike Gilson, Greenleaf: Tony Bouche, Algoma
Heat 1 – Suchocki: Bret Koehler, Two Rivers
Heat 2 – Jeremy Wiitala, Green Bay: Muench
Heat 3 – Wanner: Eric Malfroid, Luxemburg
IMCA Northern Sport Mod 18 Lap Feature – Rod Solem, Seymour: Jeff Vlies, Kewaunee: Tyler Hackett, Algoma: Tom Stark, Egg Harbor: Jesse Kroll, Algoma: Bernie Reinhardt, Sturgeon Bay
Heat 1 – J.J. Anderson, Pulaski: Solem
Heat 2 – Hackett: Stark
Heat 3 – Ryan LeMieux, Sturgeon Bay: Eric Arneson, Oconto Falls
NEW Super Stock 15 Lap Feature – Todd Everard, Green Bay: Dave Baenen, New Franken: Tony Everard, Green Bay: James Bosman, Sturgeon Bay: Andy Paluch, Pulaski: Gene Sternard, Luxemburg
Heat 1 – Tony Everard: Nick Grovogel, Forestville
Heat 2 – Kipp Burlo, Sturgeon Bay: Jimmy Anderson, Forestville
IMCA Hobby Stock 15 Lap Feature – Travis Hackett, Algoma: C.J. Weckler, Sturgeon Bay: Keith Kickbusch, Kewaunee: Roger LaViolette, Forestville: Travis LuMaye, Forestville: Brandon Peterson, Sturgeon Bay
Heat 1 – Hackett: Peterson
Heat 2 – Kickbusch: Weckler
4 Cylinder Feature – Joey Scoon, Sturgeon Bay: Mike Sargent, Sturgeon Bay: Matt Torphy, Bonduel: Jeremy DuBois, Sturgeon Bay: Brian Sargent, Sturgeon Bay: Matt Sargent, Sturgeon Bay
Heat – Scoon: Torphy