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In The Zone - Successful 2011 Season So Far!

By Jeffrey Sachse
Wednesday, June 15th, 2011 - Oshkosh, WI. - Mother Nature chalked up her first victory of 2011, forcing postponement of the Driver's Sponsor Appreciation Night until June 24th, but that blemish aside the 2011 season is shaping up to be a very successful season. Decent crowds have appeared each night to witness over 100 cars take to the racetrack, and the shows have been highly competitive as no single driver has won more than two features thus far. The events have also been run in a timely fashion with only one race night finishing after the 10:00pm mark making a fast paced program the norm here at Oshkosh Speedzone Raceway.

In the Automotive Supply Company Modifieds only Mitch McGrath has managed to earn more than a single victory, having won the main event on opening night and again on May 27th. Other wins have been captured by Brian Drexler, Jeremy Christians and Mike Klenz. Drexler sits atop the standings my three markers over Tim Lemirande who is seeking his first win of 2011 thus far. Travis Spaulding who has placed as high as second place in feature action has also had some bad luck and sits third in the point standings 11 points out of first place. Eddie Muenster and his father Jerry who has driven race cars in five different decades comprise the top five in current points.

The Miller Lite Grand National division is a prime example of how competitive the racing has been so far this year on the third-mile clay oval as there have been no repeat feature winners so far. Larry Richards and his son Kenny have each collected a victory, as has sophomore Grand National pilot Jim Rhode who won the season opening event. Checked flags have also been captured by Tim Simon and current point leader T.J. Smith. Smith in his fourth year of Grand National racing is seeking his first Speedzone track title and is currently sitting just three points ahead of Tim Warner. Warner who has been denied a victory so far in 2011 has finished in the top five on four of the five nights so far and is due for a win. Defending champion Larry Richards sits third in the stands 13 markers back. Terry Van Roy and last year's point runner-up Brian Henry hold down the top five positions.

The Total Power Sales Street Stock division has had only one repeat winner so far as Jon Schultz was seen victory lane on two occasions in the past three weeks. Single victories have been turned in by Jerry Winkler, Mike Nehmer and Jeff Jungwirth. Using extremely consistent performances, Jungwirth holds a five point advantage over Schultz so far this year. Winker lies third in the standings seven markers back. Randy Rahn and Frank Knaus hold down the fourth and fifth spots in the current standings.

Zeke Bishofberger sits stop the Leon's Frozen Custard Sport Modified division by nine points over Kevin Bethke. Ron Besaw, Adam Pugh and Chad Guyette hold down the top five point slots. The 2011 season marks the first year for the class which has seen explosive growth in its first few weeks along with some exciting racing as the class has brought many new drivers to the track. Bishofberger has won two main events so far, while Bethke has captured one. Tracy Wassenberg who makes limited appearances at the raceway has chalked up a single victory. Guyette added his name to the winners list having captured the most recent feature event.

The Lynn's Service Center Dirt Devil's may be the entry level class but they have has several caution free feature races so far in 2011. Jason Fairbank became the first repeat feature winner this past week now having two wins on the season. Fairbank also sits atop the standings by ten points over Dan Juszczyk who also has won a feature this year. Adam Broehm and Steve Lemay have also won main events.

Friday Night racing continues until early September when the Stock Car season ends with the WAPL Speedzone Fall Classic, a two day show held on Friday Night September 9th and Saturday Night September 10th. Fans should consult the track schedule at www.oshkoshspeedzone.net to find special events and to see which nights are off for community events such as Lifefest and Deerfest as well as the Winnebago County Fair.

Weekly racing events see the pit gates open at 4:00pm, with the grandstands opening at 5:00pm. The racing program will begin at 6:30pm.

Arrive early to be sure to get your favorite seat!

Oshkosh Speedzone Raceway is a 1/3 mile semi-banked clay oval located at the Sunnyview Expo Center which resides near the intersection of Highways 76 and County Trunk Y in Oshkosh. Weekly racing Friday Night racing continues until September.