(RACE RECAP) July 17th, 2021 Eve Of Destruction

By Jason D Searcy

July 17th, 2021 – Elko, MN

The race season is now in full swing with an Eve of Destruction event in front of another full crowd on Saturday night July 17th at Elko Speedway.

The first 25 lap NASCAR Late Model division feature sponsored by the Car Lot of New Prague had #32 Jeremy Wolff take the early lead until #17 Jon Lemke from Savage (MN) caught Wolff and motored past on the high side on lap six. Former two-time ELKO Late Model Champion Jon Lemke was then never challenged again in this cautionless race, he increased his lead to 2.206 seconds at the finish line, it was the first win of the season for Lemke. Fast qualifier #72 Jacob Goede started the race 11th and worked his way up through the large 23 car field and finished second place, Jeremy Wolff was third, #81 Bryan Syer-Keske fourth and #13 Bryan Wrolstad fifth. None of the 23 cars entered into the race was lapped.

The second Late Model feature had #8 Billy Mohn from Lakeville (MN) take the lead from the start and he never gave it up, Mohn ran away from the big field of cars and won by 1.928 seconds at the finish line. It was the second win of the season for Mohn at Elko Speedway. Defending 7-time Champion Jacob Goede started 9th and worked his way up to second after a furious battle with #52 Chad Walen who finished third after starting 11th. Ryan Varner #31 was fourth and #13 Bryan Wrolstad rounded out the top five. There were no caution flags in the 50 total laps raced in the Late Model division at ELKO.

Jacob Goede is now the Late Model point leader, he has a 22 point advantage over Chad Walen in the standings.

The Pepsi Power Stock division had two 20 lap feature events on Saturday night at Elko Speedway. Jason Michaud #25 took the early lead in the first feature, Paul Hamilton #56 grabbed the top spot on lap three, he then was challenged by #62 Tom Doten just before the half-way mark and then passed on the high side on lap 11. Shortly there after Doten spun into the infield after some contact in turn #2 and the officials ruled a two position set-back for Hamilton. The race remained cautionless, Hamilton crossed the finish line first so the penalty was assessed after the race. Brandon Plekkenpol from Shakopee (MN) #55 was then awarded the win, he finished just 0.166 seconds ahead of #13 Matt Frye at the finish line. Hamilton was awarded third, fast qualifier #88 Nick Oxborough started 9th and finished fourth and #83 Julie Jorgenson was fifth of the 15 cars entered in the race, Tom Doten did not finish. It was the second win of the season for Plekkenpol who promptly retired and sold his car after the race night.

In the second Power Stock feature #25 Jason Michaud took the lead again, but this time it was #83 Julie Jorgenson who passed Michaud on the high side for the top spot with #88 Nick Oxborough from Lakeville (MN) following just behind her. A caution period happened on lap 13 which put Jorgenson and Oxborough next to each other on the restart. Three-time Champion Nick Oxborough took the lead with a high-side pass with five laps to go, he weaved through some lapped traffic and held on to win by 1.14 seconds, it was the second win of the season for Oxborough. Jorgenson finished second, #19 Mark Berg finished third, #56 Paul Hamilton fourth and #66 Joe Prusak finished fifth of the 15 cars entered in the race.

Nick Oxborough now has a 41 point lead over Matt Frye in the Power stock season standings.

The Great North Legends had 17 cars competing in the two 20 lap features during Eve of Destruction at Elko Speedway. In the first feature #07 Ridge Oien took the early lead and #100 Tristan Swanson passed him for the lead on lap 2. A yellow flag flew on lap three but Swanson held on until veteran driver #71 Jon Lemke caught him on lap 8, after some intense driving Lemke took the lead on lap 14. Another caution period happened on lap 18 causing a green-white-checkered shootout finish. The top 4 cars had an epic battle with Jon Lemke trying to protect the lead and Tristan Swanson putting on a lot of pressure, fast-qualifier #87 Robby Carter from Lakeville (MN) then took advantage on the last lap and snuck past both of them on the inside and won a drag race to the finish line. It was the closest margin of victory in the history of Elko Speedway, 0.001 seconds. Jon Lemke was second, Tristan Swanson third, #47 Austin Jahr fourth and #2 Rob Thurston fifth. It was the first win of the season for Carter.

The second Great North Legends 20 lap feature had #88 Christopher Konop lead the first couple laps until #100 Tristan Swanson from Elko (MN) took over the top spot on lap three, after a couple yellow flags Swanson still had the lead but was being challenged by
#8 Colin Stocker. A big wreck happened in corner #2 and that tightened up the field with five laps to go and a few drivers went to the back of the pack including Stocker. The top three drivers then raced furiously to the finish with Swanson, #87 Robby Carter and #71 Jon Lemke just inches apart at times. It looked as though Carter was faster but just could not get around Swanson even after bumping him a couple times mid-corner. Swanson held on and won by just 0.107 seconds to win for the first time this season at Elko Speedway, Carter finished second, Lemke was third followed by #33 Ryan Rose who is returning to racing after a decade long absence and #07 Ridge Oien fifth of the 17 cars entered.

Robby Carter now leads the ELKO Great North Legends point standings, he has a 4 point advantage over Tristan Swanson.

The WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds held an 8 lap exhibition race and #81 Bryan Syer-Keske won followed by #25 Eric Campbell, #5 Scott Marschall and #100 Weston Marthaler.

*All results and point standings are unofficial

The Ghostbusters movie played after the races at Elko Drive-in, numerous kids participated in the scavenger hunt and on-track costume contest, people also got their photos taken with Ghostbusters characters.

Two Monster Trucks crunched cars in front of the packed Elko Speedway crowd including Josh Bumgartner from Litchfield (MN) in Mechanical Mischief and Kevin King from Waycross (GA) who starred in the Zombieland 2 major motion picture with his Monster truck named Straight Jacket.

On the concourse three motorcycle riders performed a death defying exhibition of bravery for the fans by racing around and upside down in the 16 foot in diameter Motoglobe.

Chad Johnson and the Minnesota Transplants played country rock in the Champions Lounge area.

The Spectator Drags and Figure 8 School busses never fail to entertain during Eve of Destruction events at ELKO.

Up next at Elko Speedway is a race event with all divisions participating on Saturday July 24th, gates open at 5pm, action begins at 6pm. Get more information at ElkoSpeedway.com or download the free ELKO racing app. The next Eve of Destruction will be on August 7th.

Elko Speedway is a high banked NASCAR sanctioned 3/8th mile asphalt oval race track with stadium seating located 30 minutes South of the Twin Cities in Elko-New Market MN.

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