DELLS, WI (April 10) -- It was something new and something old at
Dells Motor Speedway Saturday as the Wisconsin Challenge Series (WCS)
held its first race of the season. The "new" was everyone riding atop
Hoosier tires for the first time since the series' inception in 2001.
The "old" was last year's series champion Erik Darnell
(photo) in the winner's circle yet again. The season-opening event attracted a series record number of competitors with
55 late models in attendance.
When WCS promoters Jeff Sacshe and
Craig Bassuener selected Hoosier as the exclusive tire for the series
earlier in the year,
Hoosier Late Model Asphalt Product Manager Terry Newton commented,
"With tracks like Wisconsin Dells Motor Speedway and Lake Geneva
Raceway already running Hoosiers in their weekly Late Model classes,
it can only attract more participants to the Wisconsin Challenge
Series." Newton's projections were prophetic as the pits were
jammed with a record 55 participants.
Jeremy Lepak was the fastest qualifier around
the 1/3-mile paved oval at 13.578 seconds in a Dodge followed by
Andrew Morrissey in a Chevrolet. Erik Darnell was third also in a
The 100-lap main event had just two cautions and saw
Erik Darnell take the win followed by Frank Kreyer and fast qualifier
Jeremy Lepak. Tony Strupp and Don Turner rounded out the top five as
22 of the 24 race starters finished the race with 14 on the lead lap.
The win was Darnell's fifth victory in the series.
The series races on Hoosier's 27.0/10.0-15 tires. The left side tire
is stamped 3035
and the right side tire is stamped 3045 which are the same used
in the weekly Late Model classes at six other area race tracks.
The WCS is scheduled to compete next at Columbus 151
Speedway on April 25th.
For more information about the Wisconsin Challenge
Series visit their website at www.wisconsinchallenge.com