By Jason D Searcy

July 22, 2017- Elko, MN

Elko Speedway partnered with the Mary Moon Foundation and Hairball to present a NASCAR Whelen All-American race night along with music to benefit charity.  Not only was the entire admission price donated, but also dozens of drivers from all divisions racing at ELKO donated their prize money to the Mary Moon Foundation benefiting Crescent Cove Hospice and the University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital all in memory of young Mary Jacqueline O’Keefe who passed away in 2009. 

Fifteen year old Owin Giles #6 from New Market (MN) won his first career Hiway Federal Credit Union Late Model feature event on Saturday night.  Giles started the race along side of four time winner #75 Joe Neisius, “I was thinking for sure he would pass me and I was thinking how would I hold second but GOD came in and helped me out, I prayed hard,” said Giles.  Giles grabbed the lead on the first lap and never gave it up, he led all thirty laps and won by 1.089 seconds.  Giles was the 2015 Bandolero Champion at ELKO, he made the big jump up to Late Models last year and now he is a winner at the Premiere level of racing at Elko Speedway.

Michael Beamish #40 finished second followed by sixteen year old #14 Grant Brown, #75 Joe Neisius dropped to fourth and #18 Michael Ostdiek rounded out the Top 5.

In the second 30 lap Late Model feature #3 Chris Marek from Lakeville (MN) was the best of the 22 cars competing, it was his first trophy of 2017.  Marek had to beat the current point leader #72 Jacob Goede at the start of the race, he did so and then extended his margin of victory to 1.137 seconds over #18 Michael Ostdiek at the checkers.  Goede finished third, just ahead of #42 Ryan Kamish and #40 Michael Beamish.

With the two consistent finishes Jacob Goede extended his point lead to 64 points over #14 Grant Brown in the race for the Championship.

It was a thrilling race in the first feature of the Genz-Ryan Thunder Car division.  Michael Homan #28 led the 18 car field early in the 20 lap race.  Michael Hanson #19 took over the lead on lap six but then he was challenged by #99 Brent Kane from Lonsdale (MN).  Kane and Hanson fought side by side for the top spot until Kane finally grabbed the lead with five laps remaining, he won the race to the finish line by .874 seconds for his fourth win of the year.  Michael Hanson drove a great race for second place, #8 Ted Reuvers was third, #32 Jeremy Wolff started tenth and moved up to fourth and #07 Dillon Sellner finished fifth.

Conrad Jorgenson #3 from Lakeville (MN) had misfortune in the first feature, he had a tire go down just before the feature and ended up finishing 9th out of the 18 cars.  He had better luck in the second 20 lap feature, he started on the front row, took the lead and never looked back, Jorgenson won by an impressive 4.360 seconds for his fourth win of 2017.  Dillon Sellner #07 drove up from sixth to finish second, #8 Ted Reuvers had a strong run for third, #23 Steve Schultz was fourth and #99 Brent Kane finished in the fifth position.

Defending Champion #32 Jeremy Wolff holds the point lead in the Thunder Cars, Conrad Jorgenson is 32 points behind in second place.

The Eternity Homes Great North Legends main event was one to remember.  Dirk Henry #3 from Sauk Centre (MN) won his first feature event of the year, he took advantage of hard side-by-side racing up front, slid past both #71 Derek Lemke and #75 Baiden Heskett who were fighting for the lead the entire race.  Henry won after starting seventh in the strong 20 car field at ELKO.  The Top 5 were separated by inches and swapping positions throughout.  Henry was the winner by just .053 seconds over defending Champion Derek Lemke, Baiden Heskett finished third with #70 Tim Brockhouse fourth and #22 Shon Jacobsen fifth.  The Top 5 racers all finished less than one second behind Henry at the finish.  In a great show of sportsmanship Henry then donated his winning trophy to a young fan in victory lane and every one of the Top 5 finishers donated their winnings to the Mary Moon Foundation.

Derek Lemke now has a 66 point lead in the standings over his father #17 Jon Lemke who is in second place.

Taylor Goldman #8 from Minnetonka (MN) got her first win of 2017 in the Pepsi Power Stock division.  Joe Prusak #66 took the early lead, he fought back #27 Darin Patnode and then #56 Paul Hamilton until Goldman grabbed the top spot by passing in the outside lane at the half-way mark of the race.  Goldman then extended her lead and won by 3.788 seconds.  Paul Hamilton finished second, #10 Dusty Mann was third, Joe Prusak finished fourth and #62 Tom Doten was fifth.  Two-time winner Tim Hollen #54 was involved in a big wreck and had his entire drivers side rear quarter panel crushed in and doing major damage to the car, he did not race the rest of the night.

The second 20 lap Power Stock main event went to #88 Nick Oxborough, he was the victor in an epic battle with #27 Darin Patnode.  Those two drivers raced side by side at the front of the 17 car field for fourteen consecutive laps until Oxborough finally established the lead but Patnode did not give up, he fought back and nearly won, finishing just .881 seconds behind the winner.  This was the first win of the season for Oxborough, Patnode was second, defending Champion Tom Doten #62  third, #66 Joe Prusak fourth and #10 Dusty Mann came across the finish line fifth.

Dusty Mann is the current point leader in the Pepsi Power Stocks with Nick Oxborough and Tom Doten both tied for second place only 32 points behind.

Ridge Oien #7 from Bloomington (MN) ran away with the first Hornets feature event at ELKO.  Oien took the lead early and just kept on extending his advantage, after the fifteen laps were completed he had a massive 4.340 second lead.  Brandon Olson #36b won a great battle for second place, then #41 Ashley Bell was third, #14 Justin Schelitzche fourth and #55 Brandon Plekkenpol was fifth of the 12 cars racing.  Oien passed technical inspection post-race and was awarded his first official win of 2017.

Shawn Grabinger #22 had the early lead in the second 15 lap Hornets feature event, he surrendered the top spot to #55 Brandon Plekkenpol from Shakopee (MN) on lap seven and Plekkenpol drove to his first win of the year by 2.820 seconds.  Michael Wachs Jr #3 was very strong in the bottom groove, he drove up to finish second, #36b Brandon Olson came home third, #41 Ashley Bell was forth and #22 Grabinger rounded out the Top 5.

Justin Schelitzche #14 is the defending Champion and current point leader but now by just 4 points over Brandon Plekkenpol in the race for the title.

Collin Stocker #8 from Farmington (MN) won the Brock’s Flooring Bandolero main event, #99 Max Mabee was second followed by #01 Zachary Konop and #88 Christopher Konop.  Collin Stocker now leads Christopher Konop by 3 points in the standings.

Official Results and Point Standings will be posted mid-week on

Up Next at ELKO is an Eve of Destruction sponsored by the MN Professional Towing Association on July 29th.  In addition to NASCAR racing, Galaxy Girl will return with her aerial act, J J Romans Motorcycle stunts, Figure 8 School Bus races, the Drifters, a Petting Zoo and much more including music by Crankshaft.
Spectator Gates open at 5pm with action at 6pm.  

Elko Speedway is a 3/8th mile asphalt oval NASCAR sanctioned track with stadium seating located 30 minutes South of downtown Minneapolis or St Paul just off of I-35 and county road 2 in Elko (MN).  For more information go to, follow Elko Speedway on social media, download our free app by searching Elko Racing or call (952) 461-7223.