Chateau Raceway holds season-ending awards banquet

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November 19, 2017  |  by Matthew Grage

The final wrap was put on the 60th season of racing action at Chateau Raceway in Lansing this past Friday Night as the 2017 Awards Banquet was held. Trophy’s were awarded to the top three drivers in the tracks seven classes. A rundown of the 2017 season showed just 11 shows were run with 10 other scheduled events being lost to weather related issues. 226 drivers were entered at the pits over the course of the season with 79 of those drivers picking up at least one victory on the season in either a Heat Race, B Feature or A Feature event. That figures out to better than a third of the drivers got to see the checkers falls for them at least once during the year in the combined 205 events that were run. Of the seven Track Champions three were first time Champions. The 21 drivers awarded trophy’s on the night had a combined 24 previous Track Championships at the track and with the seven awarded Saturday night bringing that total to 31 Titles for the group.

The Track Championship for the Outlaw Mini Mod class, which ran for the first time this season, was awarded to Matt Narveson of Hayfield. Matt had one feature win on the year to go along with a pair of heat wins over the course of there every other week schedule at the track which amounted to six shows out of the eleven run. It was the first Track Title at Lansing for Narveson. The second place trophy went to Bobby Gullickson of Kasson who had one feature win to his credit this year, and the third place trophy went to Adam Ackerman of Mason City Iowa. Ackerman tied for the in the class with four wins, three heats and one feature.

Chateau’s USRA A Mod Champion was also the USRA National Modified Champion for 2017. Jason Cummins of New Richland ran away with the title as he claimed eight of the tracks feature wins during the season and backed that up with six heat wins. It was Jason’s fourth Track Championship at Lansing having also topped the field in 2010, 2011, and 2016 as well. The final National Points standings showed Jason with 44 shows run on USRA Sanctioned tracks with 20 feature wins and 34 top five finishes. Finishing second in points was Greg Pfeifer Junior of Austin who had one feature win on the year. It was Pfeifer’s best finish in the class after moving up from WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds a few years ago. Pfeifer was a three time Track Champion in that class, winning those titles in 2005, 2011, and 2012. Former Track Champion from 2015 in the class, Darwyn Karau of Kasson took home the third place hardware for the season. Darwyn has finished top 5 in points in each of the last 5 years including finishing runner up in 2014, the year before his Championship.

Final Point Standings for the USRA B Modifies showed Kadden Kath of Owatonna on the top of the list for the second time in his career at Lansing. Kadden, who also took the title for the class in 2013, lead the B Mods with 5 feature wins on the season to go along with 3 heat wins. Finishing second in points was Jayden Larson of Mankato who is in his third year of racing in the class at Chateau. It’s the best finish so far for Jayden who had finished 8th and 9th in points the last two years. Matthew Brooks of Austin who moved up from the Pure Stock Class this year after taking Track Championships in that division in 2013 and 2015, had a solid season to round out the top three.

In the Pure Stock class for 2017 Jesse Stahl of Austin claimed his second career Track Championship. Jesse, who also won the title in 2007, lead the class with 5 feature wins and 8 heat wins. Most impressive about his season was he finished top three in every heat and feature during the season consistently running toward the front. Chris Hotovec of Dodge Center who had a pair of feature wins to his credit this year took home second place in the final point standings. Rounding out the top three was Troy Maas of Faribault who had three feature win in 2017 at the track. It was just Troy’ second season running at Lansing, he finished 8th in points a year ago.

Kory Adams of Stacyville Iowa took home his second career Track Championship at Chateau adding the 2017 Title to the one he won in 2015. Kory, in five years in the class has been top two every year, finishing second in 2013, 2014, and 2016. Mike Blowers of Waseca, a 5 time Track Champion at Lansing finished runnerup for the year. Mike who has Championship trophy’s in his case for the class from 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2016 as well as the Senior Hornet Division in 2009, lead the class with five feature wins. Jason Newkirk of Austin who moved up from the Pure Stock class where he had a lot of success winning Track Championships in 2010, 2014 and 2016, ended up third in his first season in the class.

Another of the first time Champions was WISSOTA Midwest Modified Driver Garitt Wytaske of Austin. Garitt finished just one point back last year in the title chase and managed to hold on to a 7 point lead on the final night to win his first Championship. Garitt had a pair of heat wins on the year. Despite not taking home a feature win on the year he took home podium (top 3) finishes on 6 of the 11 nights including 4 runnerup runs. Dan Wheeler of Savage, who finished 4th in the National Points race lead the way at the track in feature wins with 5 in the class as he took second place hardware for the season. Nationally Dan was shown with running a whopping 56 shows this last season with 18 feature wins. Ryan Goergen of Stacyville Iowa, who was the defending Track Champion in the class from 2016 ended up third in points for the year. Ryan, a 4 time Champion at Lanisng, having also won IMCA Stock Car Titles when the Track Ran the class in 2011, 2012, and 2013 to go along with his title last year, had two feature wins on the season.

The top honor for the 2017 season in the Hornet class went to Pat Wells of Faribault who claimed his first Track Championship. Pat had finished 2nd and 3rd in 2014 and 2015 respectively and after running a limited schedule in 2016 where he finished just 20th, ran a consistent season running near the front of the field. He posted one heat and one feature win on the year on his way to the title. Caylie Blowers of Waseca in her second year or racing improved on her fourth place finish from the year before to take home the runnerup trophy for the season after posting one feature win on the year. Third place honors for the class went to Cody Hyatt of Waseca. Cody who moved up from 5th and 6th place finishes in the final point standings the last two year had one feature win on the year.

The track announced that the 2018 schedule will be out before the end of the year. Fans can look for the schedule to be posted on there webpage and also on Facebook in the coming weeks. But with no real changes expected fans can likely look forward to a Test and Tune event in early April with a full slate of Friday Night racing to take them through the summer and up through Labor Day. If action from this past season, with constant 2 and 3 wide racing and sometimes 4 wide racing at the track fans can look forward to the 62nd Anniversary Season of its debut in 1956, and 61st season of action (track did not run 1984) being action that they want to be in the stands for every Friday NIght.