Weekly Reports from the 2017 Season
6/26/17 - Norway Speedway Race Results: WEEK 5
Week 5 at Norway Speedway sponsored by Grow Maxx and Baker Sign would feature fender to fender excitement and emotion as racers continue to fight for the top spot in the points championship. Adding to this excitement was the 2nd annual Sportsman Super Bowl which was created to showcase one of Norway’s support division and give a class that usually only races for points a chance to receive a generous payout as well.
This weeks’ Coca Cola Late Model dash would be won by Dan Lindsley. He would be followed by a hard charging Jordan Ives and Dillon Kralovetz. In the Auto Value Super stocks, it would be Kevin Peterson from Marinette WI, that would lead start to finish holding off Dave Fraser and John Mattia Jr who finished second and third respectively.
Doubling down on the night would be Lindsley as he would maneuver his way through contact and gain an early lead. The former Track Champion would never look back and take the checkered flag followed by Tom Lindquist, Jordan Ives, Joey Pontbriand, and Dillon Kralovetz.
Mark Jenshak, Tim Schultz Jr., John Mattia Jr., and Mike Bubloni would all come from the back of the field and battle for the lead, but at the end of the night it would be Mark Jenshak coming home with his second feature win of the season, followed closely by Schultz, Mattia, and Bubloni. Tyler Wusterbarth would pick up a 5th place finish.
In the 141 Auto Sportsman Division, current points leader Preston Weddel would take an early lead and create a sizeable gap, but Joe Ostermann would strategically work his way through the pack to challenge Weddel. It was a close one right up to the last turn but it would be Weddel that would be crowned this year’s “Superbowl” winner. Escanaba regular Paul Wagner would put his car on the asphalt and finish an impressive third.
Zach Gazda would win his first feature at Norway in the Jon Laster Stock 4 Division. The victory also moved Gazda into a close second in the points standings behind Cody Skog. Jake Dulford would finish second with Elliott Reid right on his tale in third.
In the Sport Trucks, Drew Habeck, would make the pass for the lead on lap 7 and never look back picking up the feature win. Jordan fisher and Brent Barglind would round out the top three respectively.
The fast qualifier award sponsored by Stateline Automotive would be taken by Jordan Ives with a respectable time of 14.862. In the Super Stock Division Mark Jenshak would be the quickest for the third time this year running a 15.915. Other number one qualifiers would be Anthony Schiefelbein in the Sportsman Division, Jordan Fischer in the Sport Truck’s, and Zach Gazda in the Stock 4’s.
6/22/17 - ATTENTION: IRON MOUNTAIN DAILY NEWS, NORWAY CURRENT PRESS RELEASE NORWAY SPEEDWAY RACING COLUMN JOHN OSTERMANN: Racing: A family Tradition at the Speedway
Last week at Norway Speedway we had four “Feel Good” feature winners; some of the biggest names in the Dickinson County Racing Association history. In the Auto Value Super Stock division John Mattia Jr. of Vulcan, MI won both the dash and the feature event in a convincing fashion. The Mattia name is not new to the speedway as John’s dad raced successfully back in the early ‘70’s. John’s sister Lisa, was also a successful driver in the Slammer Division years ago. John Jr. has been racing at the Speedway for over twenty years, has a beautiful racecar and is one of those driver that shows up every week, races hard, never complains and just supports the race track. Congratulation to the Mattia family, pit crew and sponsors.
In the Coca Cola Late Model Division another racing family that has been around the speedway for thirty or more years won the Feature event. Jason Wells, was our feature winner. Although Jason is considered to be one of the young guns at the Speedway, his dad has been around since the ‘70’s. Jason’s dad is no stranger to success as his helped former driver Mark Miller to several Track Championships. Jason and his dad have put together a very successful race team the last couple of years and after a sluggish start to the season, they seem to be up and running at full tilt.
In the 141 Auto Sportsman Division, Todd Schmidt of Spread Eagle, WI has a story that is somewhat legendary. He pulled his car out of the woods that he raced back in the late ‘80’s and put it in victory lane two times last week; winning the heat race and feature event. Todd is also a second-generation driver, whose family has been a part of the Speedway for over thirty years. Todd’s car has a very nostalgic, throwback look to it, as it has been through many Speedway battles. A great accomplishment to a great driver and a great racing family. Congratulations to the Schmidt family and his team (wife).
In the Jon Lasater State Farm Insurance Stock Fours, youngster Reid Devoe of Faithorn, MI won his first feature of his career. Another young driver that is very personable, polite and skilled when it comes to building and driving racecars. I am sure he will win many more.
This week at the Speedway is the Second Annual Baker Sign/Grow Maxx Sportsman Super Bowl. They will be racing for almost $2000 in cash and prizes. This event attracted some of the top drivers from Upper Michigan and Northeastern WI last year. Already entered is “Eddie the Eagle” Anschutz of Two Rivers, WI who has won several IMCA stock car championships in the state of Wisconsin and finished second last year in the Sportsman Super Bowl. Paul Wagner of Escanaba, a former Upper Peninsula International Raceway Track Champion has also pre-entered.
The Coca Late Model Division could have some surprise entries with the rain and the races canceled at WIR. Tonight’s races are being brought to you by Baker Sign and Grow Maxx. It should be an awesome show. For more information go to www.norwayspeedway.com or visit us on facebook. See you at the Track!
6-19-17 - Fan Appreciation/R&R Tire/Thirsty Whale: Race Results Press Release: By: Tyler Wusterbarth
Once again threatening skies put a damper on the evenings events, but the Speedway perservered and put on a great show for he fans. Racers from around the area took a chance and brought their cars to the speedway as week four of racing began at Norway Speedway. With the 15th annual fan appreciation night taking place, the fast dash races would consist of the top six racers in each division based on points. In the Coca-Cola Late Model Division current points leader Dillon Kralovetz would over take Jordan Ives on lap seven to win the dash, Joey Pontbriand would round off the top 3. Next up would be the Auto Value Super Stocks, John Mattia Jr., would lead from start to finish ,holding off Andy Gerwig and Tim Schultz Jr. who would both push Mattia hard all ten laps.
In the Coca Cola Late Model Division, Jason Wells and Robbie Iverson would both work their way to the front and put on a show for the fans as they battled for the lead during the last ten laps. It would be Jason Wells that would claim the victory followed by Iverson, Jordan Ives, Joey Pontbriand, and Dillon Kralovetz.
In the Super Stock Division John Mattia Jr. would solidify his best career performance as he also claimed the feature win keeping the 2.75 of Andy Gerwig at bay for the second time of the night. They would be followed by Dave Fraser, Kevin Peterson, and Mark Jenshak.
In the 141 Auto Sportsman Division it would be Todd Schmidt of Spread Eagle, WI that would break Preston Weddel's three feature event win streak. Schmidt lead the race start to finish and holding off a hard charging Weddel and Michelle Janczewski. Janczewski would battle for the top three finish with Savanna Novara for the majority of the race.
The Stock 4 Division would see a change in finish results. Reid Devoe would race hard from start to finish putting a significant gap between him and Adam Faull as he weaved his way through traffic. They would be trailed by Jake Dulford, who rounded out the top three.
6/15/17 - AUTO VALUE CHALLENGE SERIES LIVES UP TO THE HYPE - John Ostermann
They say in the entertainment business that competition, drama and controversy sell the tickets. If that is the case, Norway Speedway is going to have 10,000 people at the raceway tonight. Last week’s Coca Cola Late Model feature saw Norway Speedster Joey Pontbriand jump out to an early lead in the 50-lap race. Joey looked to be on his way to his 2nd feature win of the season and the race was rolling along just as it should until lap 49. It was at that point when Joey became heavily challenged by both #2 Dillon Kralovetz was trying to get underneath Pontbriand and #119 Dalton Zehr was trying to get around Joey in the outside groove. What happened next was anybody’s guess but track officials, fans, and drivers all had different opinions which is once again great for the entertainment value of the event. Either way, it was three great racecar drivers putting on an exciting show for a hyped-up crowd. The final finishing order was Dalton Zehr, Reagan May, Dillon Kralovetz. Dalton Zehr of Daytona, Florida came from the rear of the field and went on to win the $1000 prize.
In the Auto Value Super Stock feature, rookie Tyler Wusterbarth Oconto, Wisconsin started on the pole and took off to an early lead and held off a strong challenge from Norway Speedway favorite, Ryan Wender who made his first appearance of the season. It looked as though Wusterbarth was going to keep the lead until former track champion, Mark Jenshak came through a stout field with precision and got up on Wusterbarth’s back bumper with five laps to go. The two had then went door to door for the remainder of the race with Jenshak getting up on his outside door, but not able to complete the pass. Wusterbarth went on to win his first Auto Value Challenge race and was the first rookie to do so. Congratulations to Tyler, his family, his team and his sponsors.
In the 141 Auto Sportsman Division, it was another feature race decided by a car length or less. When Wausaukee’s Preston Weddel completed the first Sportsman Stock Car hat trick by winning his third straight feature event. The division’s fast qualifier Michelle Janczewski came from the rear of the field and made contact with Preston as they crossed the finish line side by side. It is very early in the season, but it looks like Preston could be on his way to his first ever championship after being the bridesmaid for the last two years. Congratulations to Preston, his family, his team and his sponsors.
The Wisconsin Sport Truck series is a traveling series that travels to several speedways out of the course of the summer and stops at Norway Speedway to put on four races. Although it is a traveling series, a few of our local guys have built trucks and got involved with the division. This series has been around a long time and has some of the best racing fabricators and engine people there is in the business. For Kingsford’s Brent Barglind to pull off a feature victory last week, is a huge accomplishment. Congratulations to Brent, his family, his team and sponsors.
In the Fabulous 4 Cylinder Division, Cody Skog remains undefeated as he cruised to his 3rd feature win of the season. However, Jake and Jessie Dolfurd, Adam Faull and Zach Gazda have all shown signs that they can break the streak on any given night. There is a lot of racing left and I think the competition and level of drama is going to get interesting, not just in the Fab 4 Division but in all divisions. This week marks the fifteenth anniversary of our Fan Appreciation Night. For fan appreciation night, there is no qualifying and the fans get to go out on the track and meet all the Speedway’s drivers and receive autographs and other treats. We have the best fans in the world and this is our way of saying thank you. Another added attraction this week will be the super popular Norway Speedway Spectator Eliminators. This is a fun event where the average fan gets to take his licensed and registered daily driver out on the track and race. It is always fun! The race tonight is being brought to you by the Thirsty Whale and R & R Tire. For more information go to norwayspeedway.com or visit us on facebook. See you at the track!
6/13/17 - AUTO VALUE ROUND ONE RACE RESULTS; By Tyler WUSTERBARTH
A good crowd and a great field of racecars showed up last Friday night and were treated to great short track stockcar racing at Norway Speedway. One of the premiere events took place at the Speedway as the first round of Auto Value Challenge Series took place. Local and traveling drivers competed to win $1000 in the Late Model Division and $500 in the Auto Value Super Stock Division. The Coca Cola Lare Models would begin the night with the fast dash. Dillon Kralovetz would take the checkered flag followed by Reagan May and Dalton Zehr. Current Championship point leader Mark Jenshak would win the Auto Value Super Stock dash, followed by Ryan Rea and John Mattia Jr.
Dalton Zehr behind the wheel of the 119 Coca Cola Late Model would take home the win and the big check as he would come all the way from the back. He was followed by Reagan May of Green Bay, WI. Dillon Kralovetz, Tom Lindquist and Mike Reichenberger rounded out the top five.
In the Auto Value Super Stock Division rookie driver, Tyler Wusterbarth of Oconto, WI would pick up the win, leading all 35 laps and held off Ryan welding early on and charging Mark Jenshak in the end. Kevin Peterson and John Mattia Jr. would finish in fourth and fifth.
Preston Weddel would remain perfect on the year winning his third straight win and extending the gap in season points. He would battle with Michelle Janczewski who would finish a close second. Todd Schmidt finished a strong third.
The Wilson Auto Collision Sport Trucks returned to the Speedway and when everything settled it would be Brett Barglind who would claim the victory and move his way into first in the points for the season. Blaine Habeck and Tom Krueger would finish second and third respectively.
Seasoned driver in the John Lasater State Farm Insurance Stock 4’s, Cody Skog would continue his dominance after reeling in early leader Jake Dulford and claim his third feature win on the season. Jake Dulford finished a close second, followed by Jesse Dulford.
Fast Qualifier Award presented by Stateline Automotive was taken by Dalton Zehr with a time of 14.572. Fast qualifier in the Auto Value Super Stock division was Mark Jenshak with a time of 15.997. Michelle Janczewski took fast time in the 141 Auto Sportsman division with a time of 18.2. Blain habeck had a fast time of 16.2 in the Wisconsin Sport Trucks and Cody Skog would set the fast time for the 4 cylinders. For more information go to www.norwayspeedway.com or visit us on facebook.
6/8/2017 - PRESS RELEASE NORWAY SPEEDWAY RACING COLUMN JOHN OSTERMANN AUTO VALUE ROUND ONE
After two solid weeks of stockcar racing at Norway Speedway, we are getting into the teeth of the schedule. Tonight, marks Round One of the Auto Value Challenge series that pits Wisconsin’s best Late Model and Super Stock drivers against Upper Michigan’s best racers. The series which originally started in the late ‘80s was the idea of Norway Speedway Hall of Famers, Don Oliver, Denny Hanson and Kent Pearson. It started out as “The Aurora Liquors 500” and went on for many years. Then in 1992, Auto Value took over the series and has been the title sponsor of the event ever since. Though it is corporately backed, Breeze Auto Value in Niagara, WI has also become an enthusiastic co-sponsor. The Coca Cola Late Model feature winner tonight will win $1000 and the Auto Value Super Stock feature winner will win $500 in cash. The cash has always been the incentive for the most talented new drivers to make the trek to the speedway. This year will be no different as one of the travelers happens to be one of the top young female drivers in the Midwest. Rachel Kallas from Winneconne, WI will be wheeling a Coca Cola Late Model at Norway Speedway tonight. Rachel Kallas was the 2014 Golden Sands Super Stock Rookie of the Year, the 2016 Dells Raceway Park Late Model Rookie of the year and a 2016 Dells Raceway Park TUNDRA Sportsman feature winner. Ad this young lady to our already talented field of female drivers and it adds a whole new dimension to the competition.
In a preseason report, I predicted that Bark River’s Tom Lindquist purchased a new racecar and could be in the hunt for his first ever Track Championship here at Norway Speedway. Guess what?! Tom Lindquist is currently second in the Coca Cola Late Model Championship points for the season. I watched Tom win the dash last week and he looked extremely poised and fast. Congratulation to his family, team and sponsors and I hope his good fortune continues. Dillon Kralovetz of Bonduel, WI has won back to back Track Championships but has not won a feature event since 2014. Dillon Kralovetz, who is known for being a great qualifier and a very consistent/conservative racer who is always around at the end of the race, found himself in victory lane last Friday night. Congratulation to Dillon Kralovetz, his team, family and sponsors. It was good to see 15-year-old Cameron Clifford of Norway MI, jump out and take the lead in the Late Model Feature with Kingford’s Scott Stanchina following closely behind. The two checked out from the rest of the field and looked like they were headed for a one, two finish until contact was made between the two cars and they both ended up in the rear of the field. I am sure they do not feel this way but it was fun to watch. I am also positive that both drivers will be in victory lane sooner than later.
The Auto Value Super Stock division, saw Mark Jenshak come back from a bad crash on opening night to win his first Auto Value Super Stock feature win of the season. I have always said the true test of a racing team is when they can return to the track after a crash and not miss a beat. Wausaukee’s Preston Weddel has now won back to back 141 Auto Sportsman Feature events. And, like I said at the beginning of the season, he is due to win his first Championship. Congratulations to Jenshak and Weddell racing teams, families and sponsors.
In the Fab Four division, even though Cody Skog has won both features, Reid Devoe and Zack Gazda have both been the fast qualifies. There seems to be a good balance of competition as we have had two different fast qualifies and several other drivers that seemed to have stepped up. This is going to make for a very entertaining summer.
All the top drivers from Upper Michigan and Northeastern WI are going to be at Norway Speedway tonight and I hope you are there too. For more information visit www.norwayspeedway.com or visit us on facebook. See you at the track!
6/1/2017 - PRESS RELEASE NORWAY SPEEDWAY RACING COLUMN JOHN OSTERMANN
Another Star Studded Line Up:
Ives, Iverson, Lindsley, Kralovetz and Zehr will all be in the house tonight at Norway Speedway. There is no such thing as a regular night. This past winter during a general membership meeing, the speedway started working on getting a NASCAR driver to participate in an event one night this summer and the membership started yelling out,” We don’t need a NASCAR driver, we have Dalton Zehr.” I thought this was pretty impressive. While Dalton Zehr does not qualify as a NASCAR star, I would consider him a professional on and off the race track. Being supported by your peers speaks volumes. No offense to Dalton Zehr but we are still working on getting a NASCAR driver here this summer and I will keep you posted.
Last week our season opener had a huge crowd, even though there were two local graduations and the weather was shaky. If this is any indication of what we are in store for this summer, things are definitely looking up at the Speedway. I was extremely impressed on how the track officials and drivers worked to get through the rain delay and get the complete show in. The Fab Four division ran in a light rain and the Sportsman’s ran on a wet track successfully.
Last week was Norway Speedways rendition of an All-Star race, but an unheralded driver from Norway MI stole the show in the Coca Cola Late Model Feature. Joey Pontbriand ran away from the field and took home his first Late Model Feature win of his career. I spoke to Joey a few times last summer and he seemed a little down about his racing career but I knew the potential was there. He was just wearing two hats as he was the president of the Dickinson County Racing Association for the last six years and he was trying to drive a racecar at the same time. Speaking from experience this is extremely difficult or nearly impossible to do. Joey is no stranger to athletic success. He was one of the best athletes to graduate from Norway High School and is also one of the winningest Athletic directors in Upper Michigan history as he was a part of North Central High School’s dominance for the last four years. Congratulation to Joey, his family, his racing team and his sponsors.
In the Auto Value Super Stock division, Tim Schultz Jr. of Norway MI immerged victorious in the feature event over rookie Tyler Wusterbarth of Oconto, WI. The field of cars had its challenges because defending Track Champion Brett Bray broke his distributor in qualifying and an early ran accident took out fast qualifier Mark Jenshak. Tim Schutlz very calmly ran down Wusterbarth, who had about six car lengths on him and claimed the victory. Wusterbarth finished an impressive second in his first Auto Value Super Stock feature event.
In the 141 Auto Sportsman division, Joe Ostermann was passing for the lead with five laps to go and contact with another car sent both cars to the rear of the field. This opened the door for Wausaukee’s Preston Weddell to claim his first victory of the season. Rookie of the year candidate Anthony Schiefelbein of Pembine finished second in his first Sportsman feature event and was also the fast qualifier. He looks like he is going to be a contender in his first year in the Sportsman division. Other rookie drivers in the division that looked impressive were Jordan Massicotte who placed fifth, Jade Novara, Justin Belongia and David Loomis.
In the Fab Four division, it looks like the championship could be up for grabs with Cody Skog winning the feature and committing to running the full season. Zach Gazda was the fast qualifier and looked extremely impressive his first time out this season. Faithorn’s Reid Devoe looked every bit as fast as both of them. Defending champion Elliott Reid had a mechanical failure, while Jake and Jesse Dulford both looked strong as well. We have seven or eight drivers in that division that could legitimately challenge for the championship.
The Wisconsin Sports Trucks put on a great show as always. Blaine Habeck won the feature event. Local drivers Brent Barglind and Rhianna Carne finished fifth and sixth respectively. Gary Thom finished eighth.
This week we are going to have the best weather possible and most of the schools are out for the summer including mine! This week’s race is brought to you by Pacino’s Food and Spirits and Waupaca Foundry. This week is also Veterans night! All active and retired veteran’s admission is $5. It’s going to be a great night. For more information go to www.norwayspeedway.com or visit us on facebook. See you at the track!
5/16/2017: NORWAY SPEEDWAY RACING COLUMN JOHN OSTERMANNRACE RESULTS FROM THE SAFELITE AUTO GLASS, CJ GRAPHICS SEASON OPENER
Threatening skies and light rain did not discourage the great crowd that attended the Norway Speedway Safelite Auto Glass, CJ Graphics season opener. A huge field of cars put on a great show even though there was a short rain delay. Track officials and drivers worked feverishly to get the show in. The night started off with the Coca Cola Late Model Dash which was won by Green Bay’s Chad Butz in a car that will be driven for the remainder of the summer by Alyssa Larson. Reagan May of Depere, WI was second followed by Scott Stanchina of Kingsford, MI.
The Auto Value Super Stock Dash was won by Tim Schultz Jr. of Norway, MI, followed by Andy Gerwig of Norway and Mark Jenshak of Escanaba, MI.
The Coca Cola late model feature event was won by Joey Pontbriand of Norway MI. Pontbriand who recently competed at Bristol International Raceway in Bristol Tennessee started about mid pack, and calmly held off the pressure of defending champion Dillion Kralovetz to gain his first feature win of his career. Antigo’s Troy Nelson was third in his first appearance at the Speedway in seven years. Tom Lindquist of Bark River, MI and Mike Reichenberger of Appleton, Wi rounded out the top five respectively.
The Coca Cola Late Model B Feature was won by veteran Brett Widdis of Manistique, MI. Widdis held off Jason Wells of Kingsford MI and Tyler Radavich of Oshkosh, WI. Cameron Clifford of Norway, MI and Christopher Bouplon of Marinette, WI rounded out the top five respectively.
In the Auto Value Super Stock Feature, rookie Tyler Wusterbarth of Oconto, WI held off a field of seasoned veterans until lap 20 when Tim Schultz Jr. got by the young speedster coming out of turn two. Wusterbarth went on to finish second, followed by Dave Fraser of Iron Mountain, MI. Andy Gerwig and Karl Lamoreaux rounded out the top five.
In the John Lasatar Stock 4 Division, Cody Skog made a triumphant return by winning the feature event.
In the 141 Auto Sportsman Division, Preston Weddell of Wausaukee, WI won his first feature of the season. Rookie Anthony Schiefelbein of Pembine, WI finished second followed by Michelle Janczewski. Defending champion Joe Ostermann and Jordan Massicotte finished fourth and fifth respectively.
In the Wilson Auto Collision Sport Trucks, Blaine Habeck of Green Bay, WI won his first feature of his career followed by Drew Habeck. Justin Fickel of Green Bay, WI, Tanner Fickel of Green Bay WI and Brent Barglind of Iron Mountain, MI rounded out the top five respectively. Local truck drivers Rhianna Carne finished sixth and Gary Thom finished eighth.
The Stateline Automotive Fast Qualifier Award went to Late Model driver Dalton Zehr with a time of 14.681. Other fast qualifiers for the night included Phil Lehl from Kaukauna, WI in the Auto Value Super Stock division with a time of 15.848. Rookie 141 Auto Sportsman driver Anthony Schiefelbein had a time of 18.503. Wilson Auto Collision sport truck driver Tanner Fickel of Green Bay, WI with a time of 17.268. John Lasater StateFarm Stock 4 Fast Qualifier and Heat winner was Zach Gazda. Racing will resume next Friday night. For more information go to www.norwayspeedway.com or visit us on facebook.
5/16/2017 - Press Release: NORWAY SPEEDWAY RACING COLUMN JOHN OSTERMANN
Norway Speedway Support Divisions Going Strong:
The Norway Speedway Fabulous Four-Cylinder division; AKA the Fab Fours, have withstood the test of time. The division began in 2001 and we were one of the first speedways to race front wheel drive cars in the Upper Midwest. The class was designed to be an inexpensive way for high school kids to get their start in racing and it went above and beyond its expectations. We had over one hundred cars the first year we started the division and it opened the door for high school students and anyone else that wanted to see what it was like to race competitively at Norway Speedway for a reasonable amount of money. The division has launched the careers of some of our best racecar drivers at the Speedway including Scott Stanchina, Tim Schultz Jr., Jason Wells, Karl Lamoreaux, Brett Bray, Robbie Iverson and Joey Pontbriand. However, like everything else it isn’t what it once was due to the economy, availability of cars and possibly a new generation of kids that may not be interested in motorsports. We still have a solid group of four cylinder racers that like to get out there on Friday nights and mix it up. Elliott Reid of Faithorn MI, is our 2016 Champion and takes his front wheel drive racing very seriously, traveling throughout the state of Wisconsin to race against some of the best that are out there. He is also a versatile driver that has done very well on dirt at Upper Peninsula International Raceway. His best friend Reid Devoe of Faithorn MI, had a break out season last year and finished second in the points. Brad Harter of Hermansville MI is another young and upcoming racer that has a tremendous enthusiasm for the sport and could challenge for the Championship this coming season. Tommy Hulce and Adam Faull both showed promise toward the end of last year. Adam Faull just purchased one of the top cars out of the state of Wisconsin. He could be a serious contender once he gets the feel of his new car. A story on Fab Four racing at Norway Speedway wouldn’t be complete if it didn’t mention fifteen year racing veteran Bobby Nordell who looked good in recent practices.
The last few years we had a division called the Modified Four Cylinders, where you could take any front wheel drive four cylinder and make any modification you wanted to it producing tremendous speeds and beautiful cars. For three years, the division was dominated by Pembine’s Anthony Schiefelbein and his father Bob Schiefelbein. They both finished first and second every year and were basically unbeatable. Their two strongest competitors were David Loomis of Norway MI and Rickey Holmstrom of Kingsford MI. Due to a lack of participants the division was ended. However, one door closes and another one opens. Anthony and his dad both have beautiful sportsman cars and should create an immediate impact on that division. David Loomis shocked everyone at practice last week when he showed up with a ‘79 ford thunderbird decked out and ready to go racing in the sportsman division. Rickey Holmstrom on the other hand skipped a step and went right to the Coca Cola Late Model Division and will be running for rookie of the year against Alyssa Larson of Green Bay. These four racers and their development are going to be a great story at the Speedway this summer.
Another new division brought to the Speedway in recent years is a traveling series from the state of Wisconsin called the Wisconsin Sport Trucks. These are not full-size trucks, they are smaller scaled pickup trucks powered by big horse power snowmobile and motorcycle engines. They look beautiful and go extremely fast as the horse power to weight ratio is off the charts. Brent Barglind finished fifth in the points last year and won a couple of heat races. He started to make a statement finishing second in the feature event twice. He could be a serious contender for the Norway Speedway Track Championship and he is one of our locals. Rhianna Carne of Kingsford MI is no stranger at the speedway as she was a stand out in the Fab Four Division and has now made the transition to the Wisconsin Sport truck series. She was rookie of the year in 2016. Gary Thom finished twelve in championship points in his beautiful #3. He also had a top five in a feature event and it is only his second year in the division. Kelly Burcar of Norway MI, is another teenage female that is trying to make her way into the male dominated sport of stockcar racing. We have eight female drivers at the speedway this summer, which will be another great story to follow. For more information please go to norwayspeedway.com or visit us on facebook.
5/8/2017 - Press Release: John Ostermann - Auto Value Super Stock Competition To Be Strong At Norway Speedway In 2017
For years, the Auto Value Superstock Division has been a plethora of racing skill, talent, excitement, controversy, drama and good old fashion entertainment. Since the early nineties, I have always said that our superstocks could travel anywhere and put on a show and be competitive regardless of the speedway environment and competition. The division doesn’t have the car count that it once had but the racers that remain are some of the best the Midwest has to offer. This year not only will we have our solid group of veterans, there will also be an influx of younger guys that could fortify the division car count and it could be the divisions first step to getting it back to what it once was.
Norway’s Speedway Champion, Brett Bray is returning to defend his fourth overall points championship. Brett did something a few years back that no one thought was possible. Brothers, Mark and Ron Jenshak, two of the best in the history of the division, had a lock on the divisions crown for six years. Then Brett Bray brought it to an abrupt halt with his aggressive but consistent driving style. Recently, Brett has decided the challenge at Norway Speedway wasn’t enough and has branched out to a traveling series that races around different tracks in the state of Wisconsin. The series that Brett is apart of in Wisconsin has proved to be a challenge, but after getting one win last year I am looking for him to make a statement this coming summer.
Tim Schultz Jr. from Vulcan, Michigan finished runner up last year in championship points to Brett Bray in a race that went right down to the wire. Schultz is a second-generation driver that has also won the Fab Four Division Championship and has won several Auto Value Series Events. Like Brett, Timmy has also jumped on the traveling circuit and shocked the state of Wisconsin’s racing world. A few weeks back, when he won the heat race at Golden Sand Speedway in Plover, Wisconsin. Timmy also led 29 of the 30 laps in the feature event and made contact with another car on the last lap and fell back to ninth. He battled one of the top drivers in the state of Wisconsin and the race was show cased in Circle Track magazine a national publication. Schultz will be looking for his first Superstock track title this summer but it won’t be easy.
The Auto Value Superstock Division has many qualities, but what makes it a fan favorite isn’t just the racing but the personality of its drivers. Ryan Wender a speedway track champion a few years back seems to be on top of the game when it comes to chassis set up and making horse power.Its nothing to see Ryan walk through the pits with a T-bone steak in one hand and a hand full of tools in the other. The Wender Nation could be in for another epic championship celebration if Ryan has any luck this summer.
I wore a sport coat and tie to most of the Norway Speedway banquets over the years. One year I wore a Dale Earnhardt collared polo shirt. Two years ago, Andy Gerwig, one of the most colorful and popular drivers at the speedway took it a step further and threw out the dress code by wearing his Ricky Bobby driving suit to the banquet. He always has a smile on his face at the track and almost anywhere you will see him, but don’t let his smile fool you, he can rub fenders with the best of them. Last year he won his first feature race. Andy is another driver that with any luck could be battling for his first track championship in September.
Ryan Rea was our Superstock Rookie of the Year for 2016 and has recently built a new car. He is another driver that has steadily improved since getting behind the wheel just a short time ago.
Kevin Peterson of Menominee, Michigan showed up with a beautiful car last year and improved every week, and led a ton of laps. It wouldn’t surprise me one bit If he jumped in to the top tier of the division.
Dark Horse candidates that could make a big difference in the dynamic of the division sportsman rookie of the year driver, Tyler Wusterbarth of Oconto, Wisconsin. Tyler won a feature event last year and raced on three different speedways in his rookie season. His racecar was of the bare minimum but he always seemed to get it within the top five by the end of the night. This year he purchased one of the top cars from Wisconsin International raceway.
Ryan Longtine from Marquette, Michigan will be running against Tyler Wusterbarth in the Auto Value Superstock Divison for the Rookie of the year award. Ryan was a Wisconsin Sport Truck star the last few years. Him and his dad have built a superstock this winter and have made the jump to the next level. Ryan is a solid driver that takes pride in his racecar and should raise some eyebrows before the end of the summer.
Karl Lamoreaux plans on running full-time possibly teaming up with former speedway standout Tanner Kelly. These two guys have a ton of experience and will have a solid racecar.
Duane Franklin is no stranger to the Speedway but left for a short period of time to pursue a career on the dirt tracks of Wisconsin. I’m going to predict Duane will break into the top five in a very short period of time.
There are several other drivers that are making plans to return to the speedway including John Mattia Jr. and this could be the best summer in this division for many years. Go to norwayspeedway.com for additional racing information or check us out on facebook.
4/29/2017 - Press Release - John Ostermann~~Norway Sportsman Stockcar Division Turns Back the Clock
The most difficult thing in motorsports across the country is getting racecars to the speedway. Two of the main reasons for this are obviously cost of the racecar and its maintenance, and differentiating track rules and enforcment. A couple years ago Norway Speedway took a step in combating the problem of a dwindling car count in the Superstock division. Some of the best Superstock racing at Norway Speedway was in the late '80s and early '90s. We averaged around 30-35 cars a night during this time period. The racing was affordable, competitive, and exciting with a lot of three wide passing. The track qualifying record was 18.0 seconds. These cars are what is commonly known as a Streetstock, Superstock, or Sportsman. This is an american made, 108-112 inch wheel base car with about a 300 horse power V8 engine and a factory built frame. All of these cars were home built by conventional means in someone's garage. These cars were used as the family grocery getter and were also raced at the NASCAR level for many years. With all the changes and enhancements over the years the chasis and racecar has become somewhat obsolete and has been replaced by a professionaly fabricated model. Norway Speedway has turned back the hands of time by starting the new Sportsman division. This has given new life to the older outdated cars that were no longer competitive but yet in an abundance. You can run just about any car, tire or engine combination that you want. The rule book is only a few sentences long rather then the normal twenty five pages. The only rule is: "No car can turn a lap faster then the breakout time of 18.0 seconds." There are restrictions on every racecar from NASCAR to Norway Speedway; such as engines, tires, carburetors, etc. The Sportsman Division at Norway Speedway only has one restriction and that is the bracket time. The bracket time is very easy to enforce as it is done electronically. The racecar only needs to pass the safety inspection and a technical inspector is not really needed which is a luxury for the speedway.
After a sluggish first season, where the car count only averaged 4-6 cars, last year was a breakout year. The division averaged 10-12 cars with a season high 18 at the Sportsman Super Bowl event in August. Showcasing the divisions versatility, one of the top dirt drivers in the state of Wisconsin, Eddie "The Eagle" Anschutz showed up with his dirt car and battled defending champion Joe Ostermann for several laps only to lose by inches. The Sportsman Super Bowl had Wisconsin stand out drivers Bill Ebben of Lakewood Wi, BJ Schoenek of Marion Wi, Karl Lamoreaux of Niagara Wi, Matt Haupt of Pembine Wi and Preston Weddell of Wausaukee Wi. When teams don't have to spend a lot of money on tires and performance enhancements, they have room in the budget to travel.
Another interesting story that was spawned by the division are Scott Dahlgren and Todd Schmidt of Spread Eagle, Wi. Both of them brought out racecars that had been sitting for almost fifteen years and were competitive. The Norway Sportsman division has also launched the career of Late Model driver Cameron Clifford of Norway Mi, who was the Coca Cola Late Model Rookie of the year in 2016. Tyler Wusterbarth of Oconto Wi, who was a feature winner in the sportsman division his rookie season, has just purchased a beautiful Superstock and will be running in the Auto Value Superstock division for Rookie of the year. Another outstanding rookie was 13 year old Savanna Novara of Kingsford, MI. She is the youngest female driver to ever win a stockcar race at the speedway. She also has just purchased a new car and could be a strong contender for this years track championship. Her sister Jade Novara, will be driving Savanna's old car. The division is not gender bias as Armstrong Creek's Michelle Janczewski, a two time feature winner, finishing third in championship points will also be in the hunt for her first championship. Two time champion Joe Ostermann has earned both titles by passing cars in the third groove, a fan favorite, will once again be pushed by Preston Weddell of Wausaukee Wi. Weddell has finished second in championship points, the last two season and has won several features including the Kim Parsons Memorial Event during the Dickinson County Fair.
We already have six rookies signed up for the Sportsman Division this year and the car count is looking stronger then ever. Go to norwayspeedway.com for more information or check us out on Facebook
4/21/17 - Norway Speedway Press Release - John Ostermann
Top Talent Returns to Norway Speedway for 2017
With the Norway Speedway racing season a little over a month away, things are starting to take shape as far as what the quality of racing and entertainment value is going to look like this Summer. The Dickinson County Racing Association has been incorporated since 1971 and there was racing at the Dickinson County Fairgrounds long before that. There is one reason we have been able to sustain for all these years, the people, which includes: our leadership, our members, our drivers, our sponsors, our track workers and most of all our loyal fans. We have been able to put on an exciting and entertaining stock car racing show. With this being said, I am happy to announce that our core group of Coca-Cola Late Model drivers will be returning for the 2017 racing season.
Dillon Kralovetz of Bonduel, Wisconsin has been a regular at the speedway since 2011. Dillon is also been our Coca-Cola Late Model Track Champion for the last two seasons. Dillon comes from one of Wisconsin's most touted racing families and it shows. There have been very few track champions in our speedways history to win a championship without a major feature event victory. However, Dillon's smooth and consistant driving style, along with his ability to perform in high pressure situations, always has him finishing near the top of every race. Knocking Dillon and his team off the top of the heap will be no easy task.
Another racing family that needs no introduction, are the Iversons out of Hyde, Michigan. Hall of Fame members, Bob and the late, Earl Iverson were pioneers of the speedway. The torch has been past to Bob's son, Jamie who can also be mentioned in a conversation of the speedway's greatest of all time. Jamie's career was still on the rise when he decided to step aside and put his son, Robby in the driver's seat. In the last two years, Robby has steadily improved winning a feature and being one of the best qualifiers. He could definietely be in line for another Iverson Racing track championship.
Jason Wells of Kingsford, Michigan had a break out season last year finishing a solid fourth in track championship points. Jason and his dad have spent a lot of time in the shop and always come out with top notch race cars and this year will be no different. Though he is a dark horse, it wouldn't surprise me one bit if he was in contention for the championship on Labor Day weekend.
Marquette, Michigan driver, Mike D'Angelo has courageously rebounded from a tough crash a couple years ago to regain the form that made the 26 year old one of the best young drivers out at the speedway. Last year the D'Angelos and Mike Butz Racing teamed up and there was a noticeable improvement. Mike finished his personal best, sixth in the championship points standings. There is a good possibility he could move up even higher this summer.
Tommy Lindquist and his crew are one of the speedways most popular teams. Not because he is always in the winner's circle, but mainly because they are good racers and competitors that have always demonstrated the utmost in sportsmanship. That could all change this year as I am looking for Tommy and his crew to compete for their first ever Norway Speedway Track Championship. Tommy has always been known to do more with less, but this year with a new car and a new engine their could be a quick rise to the top.
This core group combined with cameo appearences by standouts: Kris Kelly, Dalton Zehr, Reagan May, Dan Lindsley, Scott Stanchina and a few others could bring the level of competition and talent to its highest point in speedway history. For more information on Norway Speedway go to Norwayspeed.com or check us out on facebook.
John Ostermann, Racing Columnist Iron Mountain Daily News
4/11/17 - Norway Speedway Press Release - John Ostermann - The Future Looks Bright at Norway Speedway in 2017
Norway Speedway will be kicking off its 76th year of racing. The biggest story of this summer seems to be the teenage take over of the Coca-Cola Late Model Division. There are seven drivers ranging from ages 15 to 19 that have all proven that they can drive a racecar. These are all 2nd and 3rd generation drivers that are well funded and have solid technical support. This is unprecedented in the late model division in the Upper Midwest.
Leading the teen take over is 19 year old, Jordan Ives of Bark River, Michigan. Ives is the son of Speedway standout Steve Ives and the nephew of Greg Ives who is the crew chief of NASCAR'S Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jordan was the prize winner of the Champion Sparkplug's "Search for a Champion" Grand Prize winner of $50,000. Jordan has also won an unbelievable eight feature events at Norway Speedway, including the 2016 Labor Day 100. Jordan finished 2nd in championship points for the 2016 season and is a top contender for the 2017 track championship.
Cory Cootware is a Senior at Kingsford High School. He is also a 2nd generation driver that has experienced a lot of success at a very young age. Cory's big moment last summer came when he won the Kinross Invitational at Kinross Speedway Park. This summer there will be a Northern Michigan Championship involving the three tracks: Norway Speedway, Kinross Speedway Park and Sands Speedway in Marquette, Michigan. Cory is not only as strong contender for the Norway Speedway Track Championship but he could also win the first ever Northern Michigan Triple Crown Series as well.
Norway Speedway's Cameron Clifford has been a racing phenom, racing go-carts all over the Midwest with great success. Two years ago, he set his sights on Norway Speedway in the new sportsman division. At 14 years old, he is the youngest driver to win a feature race in a full-size rear wheel drive racecar at Norway Speedway. He quickly graduated from that division to the Coca-Cola Late Model Division last summer and had a couple of wins at an amazingly young age. Cameron comes from a family with a long successful history at Norway Speedway and could have a break out year.
Another teenage racing star in the making is Green Bay's Chad Butz. This will be Chad's 3rd year of late model racing and he is only 17 years old. Chad has two feature wins under his belt and has been our fast qualifier as well. His success is no surprise to many in the racing circle. Chad's dad, Mike has been building top racecars for over 25 years and was very instrumental in getting Matt Kenseth his start in NASCAR. Chad's crew chief is his older brother, Matthew and a solid team for years to come.
Tyler Radavich is 17 years old and will be in his 2nd year of Coca-Cola racing with a brand new car. Tyler's grandpa is Norway Speedway legend "Floorboard Freddy Gignac." Tyler came on strong at the end of last year. He is very smooth and consistent behind the wheel of a racecar.
Alyssa Larson is a Senior at Ashwaubanon High School. She is another former go-cart star who had a great year last year in the Wisconsin Sport Truck Division. She won two heat races at Wisconsin International Raceway. Alyssa finished eleven in championship points at Norway Speedway. She is a 3rd generation driver that will be a solid contender for the Rookie of the Year award in the Coca-Cola Late Model Division.
Another newcomer is 15 year old Ricky Holmstrom of Kingsford, Michigan. He finished in the top five of the championship point standing the last two years in the Mod Four Division. Ricky is a 3rd generation driver and will be another strong candidate for Rookie of the Year in the Coca-Cola Late Model Division.
Norway Speedway racing news and updates can be found at norwayspeedway.com.
Cory Cootware at Kinross Speed Park
2016 Banquet Press Release: Norway Speedway- Iron Mountain Daily News, The Norway Current, The Escanaba Daily Press, The Eagle Herald, Negaunee Mining Journal
Norway Speedway recently concluded a successful 2016 season with its 47th annual awards banquet held at the Island Resort and Casino in Harris, Michigan. The annual event which was attended by almost 200 guests recognized the Speedway drivers and sponsors.
The Bink's Coca-Cola Late Model Speedway Champion was Dillon Kralovetz from Bonduel, Wisconsin. This was Kralovetz's second consecutive title. Along with his championship plaque Kralovetz also received the commemorative hand made guitar built by Neville Guitars of Hermansville. Jordan Ives of Bark River finished runner up in a car owned by Robert Bourdeau. Third Place went to Robbie Iverson of Hyde, MI. The Coca-Cola Late Model Rookie of the Year was 15 year old racing prodigy Cameron Clifford of Norway.
In the Auto Value Super Stock Division, Brett Bray of Norway was crowned the Champion by edging out Tim Schultz, Jr of Norway. Trevor Cronick was 3rd. Ryan Rea driving a car owned by Sean Carollo was the Rookie of the Year.
In the Sorny's Sportsman Stockcar division Joe Ostermann won his 2nd Championship in a row edging out Wausaukee's Preston Weddel. Armstrong Creek Wisconsin's Michelle Janczewski finished 3rd in the exciting new division. Tyler Wusterbarth of Oconto, WI was the Rookie of the Year.
The Jon Lasater State Farm Insurance Stock 4 Champion was Faithhorn Michigan's Elliot Reid. He edged out his teammate Reid DeVoe and Brad Harter. The Modified Champion was Anthony Schiefelbein of Pembine, WI for the 3rd straight year. Anthony edged out his father Robert from Pembine and David Loomis of Norway. The Rookie of the Year was David Loomis.
The Wilson Auto Collision Sport Truck Championship was won by Keith Habeck of Green Bay, WI. Kyle Quella was runner up, followed by Drew Habeck. The Rookie of the Year was Rhianna Carne.
Special awards were handed out to Joe Testolin and Tim Schultz Jr. Testolin was awarded the Roy Allard Memorial Trophy for his 45 years of service to the Speedway as a scorer and track official. Tim Schultz Jr was awarded the Ron Mantel for his sportsmanship, dedication and enthusiastic support of the Speedway and the sport.Five Star/Florence Car Quest gift certificates were won by Tom Lindquist and Trever Cronick.
Norway Speedway Elects Officials for Up Coming Season:
Norway Speedway- Dickinson County Racing Association recently held its election of officers for the 2017 racing season. The Association membership elected future Norway Speedway Hall of Famer Bruce White of Kingsford, MI as the club president. Bruce has already served the DCRA as club president for four years and his experience should be a valuable asset to track operation. Bruce has been a member of Norway Speedway for over 35 years and still competes in the Late Model division.
John Novara was elected to the member at large position for the up coming season as well. John is a successful local businessman from the Iron Mountain area. John has also competed at the speedway in the Coca-Cola Late Model division. He has two daughters, Savanna and Jade Novara, competing in the Sportsman Stockcar division for the 2017 season.
John Ostermann of Norway, MI will hold down the position as the speedway secretary. Ostermann has also servered as the speedway president for six years and as vice president on the Upper Peninsula International Raceway Board as well.
The new officers will join the current board members Bob Bordeau of Escanaba, MI and Julie Iverson of Hyde, MI who are in their second terms as vice president and treasurer.
The next general membership meeting will be held on Wednesday, January 18th at the Big 10 Sports Bar in Quinnesec @ 7pm CST.