The Norway Speedway season is heating up; major upcoming events | News, Sports, Jobs

Believe it or not, it’s hot August nights at Norway Speedway. The next two weeks are going to be huge events that bring in big money in both divisions and set the tone for championship night at the Dickinson County Fair on Labor Day weekend.

But, first, I want to go over all the great things that happened last Friday night.

Starting with Coca-Cola Late Model division winner Jason Wells of Kingsford and the weird phenomena surrounding his biggest win. The evening was sponsored by Fine Lines Painting & Drywall, which is owned by Wells’ “Uncle Dale” and Incredible Bank. The strange coincidence is that it is the second year in a row that he has won the biggest race of his career on the night his uncle Dale sponsors it.

As a racing driver, there is nothing more rewarding than winning a race at your sponsor’s party and that happens very rarely. It is now the second year in a row that Jason and his team led by his father, Bob Wells, have won it.

Bob Wells got his start in racing helping Hall of Famer Mark Miller win championships over 30 years ago. He is a dedicated member of our association and rarely misses an off-season meeting or track function. I wanted to come down last week and congratulate everyone, especially Bob Wells, because he’s probably only smiled twice in 30 years, and I didn’t want to miss this rare event.

May I also add that once again the Coca-Cola Late Model feature resulted in an incredible battle between Jason Wells and Justin Mondeik of Gleason, Wis., who is our current points leader.

The Coca-Cola Late Model races this summer saw incredible finishes on the last lap. This division absolutely put on a great show and I’m sure it will continue on those hot August nights.

In the Auto Value Super Stock division, I couldn’t help but notice former track champ and speedway’s hottest rider, Ryan Wender, lined up alongside perhaps the second most popular rider, Tony. “Rocket” Wender, his son.

Ryan then won the quick dash and his first feature of the season by holding off point leader Anthony Schiefelbein. The two were literally hitting the gates as they crossed the finish line in another exciting finish.

In the 141 Auto Stock Car division, a large field of 16 cars took to the green in the Ed Hedlund Memorial race.

Hedlund and I spent a lot of time trying to figure out a way to bring back all those old race cars that sat in cornfields and grazed on the highway and the plan seems to be working. Interestingly enough, the first two Ed Hedlund Memorial races were won by Hedlund’s car and this one was won by Brian Massicotte who worked with Hedlund for 17 years.

Current point guard Joe Ostermann came from behind in his three-man fashion and finished second. Travis Hulsizer is getting faster every week and finished third. Graeson Pankratz, who camped at the circuit with his brother so they could attend the Wal-Mart car show on Saturday, took fourth place. Veteran stock car driver Jade Novara came out of retirement to finish an impressive fifth.

In the MC Signs & Graphics Fab 4 division, Elliott Reid picked up his first win of the season, edging out Alex Bellmore. Reid served on the board last year and is essentially an ambassador for the division, which has grown tremendously to more than 30 cars.

It was also great to see Cassandra Freeman of Niagara, Wisconsin back on the circuit after suffering a serious wreck a few weeks ago.

This division has a huge event coming up on August 27 as the Impact Survival Series (ISS) once again returns to Norway Speedway. It is a 300 lap race, with around 75 to 100 cars participating. The event will begin at 6 p.m. this Saturday. There will be no other races in any other division this weekend.

This week it’s Werner Electric, and it’ll be $1,000 to win the Late Model feature and $500 to win the Auto Value Super Stock feature. We race in honor of the late great Menominee super stock rider, Don Anderson, who passed away last January.

Anderson was one of many popular drivers to come out of the Menominee area and was a regular spectator at the races. Anderson’s son Nick, who is named after his father, will drive a replica car with the same paint scheme as his father. Anderson’s granddaughter, Courtney, will also race in the 4-cylinder division.

The scholarship will be increased in these two divisions thanks to Anderson’s family.

I love that we can run in honor of the riders and people responsible for building our sport and making it the most amazing family sport in the world. Anderson was my inspiration for building an M&M ice race car last winter, and I’ve learned a lot about car sales from him over the years, every time I meet him at auto auctions.

There are almost four weeks left. Let’s go out and enjoy the rest of the summer.

See you on the track.

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