Fletcher claims IMCA Super Nationals sprint championship. Russ Fletcher made the long tow up from Texas worthwhile when he chased down leader Clint Garner with a handful of laps left in the race and held off the South Dakotan to take the Super...
Fletcher claims IMCA Super Nationals sprint championship.
Russ Fletcher made the long tow up from Texas worthwhile when he chased down leader Clint Garner with a handful of laps left in the race and held off the South Dakotan to take the Super Nationals title last Tuesday night at the Boone Super Nationals in Boone, Iowa.
Lynn Woods jumped out to an early lead before being passed by IMCA National Point leader Elmer Morgan. Meanwhile, Fletcher, who started outside row number six, was steadily making his way towards the front of the field. However, while Fletcher was being methodical, Garner was being spectacular as he charged from outside the tenth row to take the lead from Morgan following a red flag for the early leader Woods.
Fletcher raced passed Morgan and set his sight on the leader and used the very bottom of the speedway to sneak past Garner. As the checkers were waving, Garner made one final charge to the high side of the speedway but came up two feet short of his first title. Morgan would hold on for third over Terry Reilly and Scott Broty, who would claim the Jackpot Junction Tour title over Bruce Defries.
News and Notes From the Boone Super Nationals
Russ Fletcher was making his first appearance at the Super Nationals in a 1994 J&J Chassis with a homebuilt engine. Fletcher, who won the 2002 Abilene Speedway track championship drove his number 4t6 Sprinter to a heat race win, made some major changes to the car, and then went on to victory. Fletcher's victory was the first for a Texas driver since Jerry Bell did it in 1999. It broke a two-year win streak for the Haney 69H as Terry Reilly drove to a win in 2000 and Donavon Peterson won from the final spot in 2001.
Clint Garner decided late in the night on Monday to head to Boone, Iowa for the event and arrived after the draw. Garner went nowhere in the heat race and the crew changed three bars and the wing angle for the feature and Garner charged from 20th to 1st in 12 laps before it slipped away to Fletcher in the final two laps. Garner had to cut down his IMCA legal wing from the shop ceiling prior to racing.
Scott Broty, a Prior Lake, Minnesota resident who is in his sophomore season in Sprint Cars, held off Bruce Defries to take the Jackpot Junction title. Broty, who is currently leading the Arlington point standings, is a former California go-kart racer turned Minnesotan. Although he has not grabbed a feature win this season, he's poised to win two championships in his second year of racing. Plus, he is rife with trivia as his real name is Scott Brotemarkle, but he shortened it to assist announcers and fans.
Bruce Defries, who has split his time between IMCA and the Wissota Sprints this season with car owner Mike Barnes, suffered from overheating problems and knew going into the finale that he would not have the motor to compete for the win. Defries is not sure what the plans are for the 2003 season, but expect him to continue to compete with the big wings and bigger motors.
Knoxville regular Chris Martinez made his annual trip to the Super Nationals, but had a forgettable night. The Des Moines driver was the victim of the one-spin rule in the heat race and then was caught up in someone else mess in the A-feature and bent the front end. Martinez had planned on calling it a season at Boone, and, unfortunately, the end was far from desirable.
Texas was represented by Rodney Henderson, Matt Porter, rookie Sam Hafertepe Jr., Dennis Smith, Elmer Morgan and of course, Russ Fletcher. Morgan, who is the defending IMCA champion and looks to be heading to another title, builds his own engine and also crafted his own chassis. The car, which is a mid-tube design, hooks up extremely well on a track like Boone. Morgan has at least ten wins at four different tracks in 2002.
Lynn Woods held the lead for the first seven laps before Elmer Morgan got by and then went over the berm in turn four. The car never flipped but Woods slammed into a grater that was parked away from the track. A scary incident and Woods was fortunate to escape with only a bloodied right arm and a demolished racer.
Bryan Haisch from Medina, Minnesota made the trip down but was eliminated in an early scuffle. He was making just his fourth career start in a Sprint Car after a long career in go-karts and had purchased his racer from Rob Caho Jr., who was on hand helping spin the wreches. Caho Jr. has been on the bench after cracking a vertebrae at Red River Valley Speedway in West Fargo a few weeks back. He should return shortly, however.
Boone Super Nationals A-Feature: 1. Russ Fletcher, 2. Clint Garner, 3. Elmer Morgan, 4. Terry Reilly, 5. Scott Broty, 6. Lyle Sylvester, 7. Rodney Henderson, 8. Dave Heskin, 9. Bob Hildreth, 10. Matt Porter, 11. Sid Denzer, 12. Bruce Defries, 13. Al Hargrave, 14. Gary Serbus, 15. Sam Hafertepe Jr., 16. Bruce Allen, 17. Dustin Lindquist, 18. Jim Smith, 19. Chuck Schumacher, 20. Brandon Allen, 21. Jason Tostenson, 22. Lynn Woods, 23. Dennis Smith, 24. Brian Heisch, 25. Dwain Wilmes, 26. Chris Martinez.
Heat 1: 1. Reilly, 2. Morgan, 3. Sam Hafertape Jr. Heat 2: 1. Sylvester, 2. Denzer, 3. Dennis Smith Heat 3: 1. Fletcher, 2. Lynn Woods, 3. Hildreth