WANDAHSEGA CLINCHES WSORR INAUGURAL SUPER TRUCKS TITLE...
Going into the final two rounds of the WSORR season this past weekend at Lucas Oil Speedway in Wheatland, MO Ben Wandahsega and Team Wandashega had one thing on their minds. Beat Dave Waldvogel whom had closed in on Wandahsega's point lead in the Super Trucks division. Going into the weekend Ben only had a one-point advantage. So it had became crunch time for Wandahsega to clinch his second championship. With the battles on the track and the temperatures in the nineties it would be a hot weekend for the WSORR Showdown in the Show-Me State.
In Saturday's Round XI action Ben lined up in the worst starting position like normal, far outside and furthest from the first corner. Crew chief Mark Wirhanowicz had made some changes to the rear shocks hoping to get the truck to transfer weight better and give it more forward bite. When the flag dropped the truck pulled hard and launched off the starting line.
Coming into the first corner, mostly because of his starting position Ben got pushed out and was toward the back of the pack even with getting a great start. In the next turn the guy that Wandahsega needed to beat, Dave Waldvogel spun out right in front of him. As Waldvogel tried to back up to get going again and Wandahsega tried to get by him, contact was made between the two trucks. In the next corner Ben in his Forest County Potowatomi/Toyo Tires Chevy was able to pull away from Waldvogel.
Ben then had a good battle with Don Williams for a while then overtook the third position. As spotter RJ Flanagan informed Ben that Waldvogel was now in fourth right behind him, Ben stayed just fast enough to stay ahead of him and not push it too hard to make mistakes. At the checkers is was Dan Baudoux taking the win with Keith Steele and Wandahsega rounding out the podium with Dave Waldvogel, Don Williams and Ken Hallgren.
In post race interviews Ben was interviewed by "Crash" from the SPEED Channel show Speed Freaks. With Ben finishing third and Waldvogel finishing fourth, Ben gained two more points on Waldvogel going into the Sunday's final round where the championship would be decided. Ben would have to finish ahead of him or right behind him to clinch the title on Sunday.
At the start of Sunday's Round XII WSORR Super Trucks race the truck once again launched hard. Wandahsega had to lift before going into the corner to avoid hitting the truck in front of him. Going over the next jump after the first corner contact was made with Ken Hallgren as Ben thought he had enough room to get by him. Hallgren landed sideways while Ben landed straight which allowed Ben to take over third and pull away from Hallgren.
After that Ben just rode around in cruise mode for the entire race maintaining his third place position with Waldvogel in tow once again. Meanwhile Baudoux and Steele battled intensely for the lead in the final laps, which resulted in a blown motor for Baudoux allowing Wandahsega and Waldvogel to move up to second and third at race end. Dan Baudoux, Don Williams and Ken Hallgren finished fourth through sixth.
Finishing ahead of Waldvogel meant that Wandahsega won the inaugural WSORR Super Trucks title with a final point margin of five points over Waldvogel. Ben and Team Wandahsega rebounded after a 2006 year that was not up to their standards. Just like the championship they won in 2005, Wandahsega and his team were the most consistent team in the Super Trucks division this year. Nine podiums, which consisted of three wins, five runner-up finishes and one lone third place finish. Of the remaining three rounds on which they missed the podium there was only one poor performance of a fifth place run during Round VII at Bark River. An engine failure earned them another fifth place while running second in round IX at Crandon. It was the first engine failure in over seven years for Wandahsega. Then of course there was the rollover during Round V at Bark River.
FInal WSORR Super Trucks Points: 1. Ben Wandahsega-245, 2. Dave Waldvogel-240, 3. Dan Baudoux-212, 4. Don Williams-212, 5. Keith Steele-194, 6. Ken Hallgren-168, 7. James Wrobleski-98, 8. Jace Schubert-86, 9. Gary Gottchalk-57, 10. Rick Hinman-41, 11. Zane Roberts-28, 12. Jeremy Flannery-14
Ben would like to thank his crew, especially Mark for the countless hours he puts in on preparing the truck. Mark is very thorough and wants everything to be perfect when it hits the track. Jesse the team transporter driver not only gets the hauler and equipment to the track on time and safe but also does a great job at the track. To Ozzy whom has to juggle his racing and work into the mix missed the Wheatland event but we really appreciate his efforts all season at the track. RJ our team spotter brings so many years of experience to the team and his advice is always an asset to the team. Most of all, my most special thanks goes out to my wife Angela for all your love and support.