Schwartz pulls within 1 of 100 feature wins; Ewing and Kerst Double Down; Osterhoff and Dunlap breaks track records!---

Schwartz pulls within 1 of 100 feature wins; Ewing and Kerst Double Down; Osterhoff and Dunlap breaks track records!---


What a perfect night to be at The Charleston Speedway!! As always, a HUGE shout out to the fans, the drivers the car owners, the teams and our great volunteer track staff! YOU all are the ones that make EVERY race night, a SUCCESS!! Mother Nature decided to play nice, so not only were we able to complete our regularly scheduled races, we were able to race 2 more of the “make-up” feature events from May 4, 2024. Be sure & check out our schedule as we have 2 remaining “make-up” feature races. DIRTcar Modified B-Feature and A-Feature, as well as the DIRTcar Pro Modified A-Feature from May 4th are yet to be completed.

DIRTcar Modified division saw 14 entries.
Qualifying results:
1.#50 Tyler Weiss 14.118
2.#I70 Danny Schwartz 14.212
3.#95 Ed Roley 14.690
4.#92 Kenny Carmichael 14.724
5.#42 Roger Mills 14.802

The 2 heat races were won by #50 Tyler Weiss and #I70 Danny Schwartz. Those finishes meant these 2 would start side by side on the front row of the feature. Danny Schwartz in his #I70 jumped out to an early lead, but #50 Tyler Weiss was breathing down his neck lap after lap until a flat tire on lap 12 would sideline Weiss. #92 Kenny Carmichael inherited 2nd place and despite his best efforts to take over the top spot, Danny Schwartz refused to be denied feature win number 99!! Kenny Carmichael #92 would settle for 2nd, while Austin Phelps #81P turned his 5th place stating position into a 3rd place podium finish. #79 Jeff King won the hard charger award with his 13th place starting position and 8th place finish! When will Danny Schwartz join the 100 club by picking up feature win #100?? Who will be the first to get his autograph after his big win? Don’t miss a minute of the action, because no one wants to miss the night he wins his 100th feature!

DIRTcar Pro Modified saw 15 entries.
Qualifying results:
1.#79 Scott Dunlap 14.716 New Track Record
2.#40J Johnny Nethery 15.020
3.#44 Gabe Menser 15.080
4.#54C Mason Lynch 15.171
5.#27 Drake Vondohlen 15.172

While the 2 heat races were won by #44 Gabe Menser and #54C Mason Lynch, the night’s pace was set by #79 Scott Dunlap as he BARELY nudged former track record holder, Brayden Boyle, out of that Track Record Holder position by a mere 0.002 seconds. Doyle’s track record time was 14.718 set back in 2022. Scott Dunlap laid it all on the line and set a NEW DIRTcar Pro Modified track record with a time of 14.716! Congratulations Scott.
With qualifying and heat races in the books, it was time for the 15 lap feature. Menser and Lynch would occupy the front row and lap 1 would go to Gabe Menser. The track had widened out considerably with 2 distinct grooves. Menser is lethal on the bottom and this night was no different. Lynch gave it everything he had, once making a mistake and slipping to 3rd, he rallied back and haunted Menser lap after lap; but when the checkered flag flew, #44 Gabe Menser was the first to cross the line. #54C Mason Lynch would settle for 2nd and Johnny Nethery in the #40J rounded out the podium with his 3rd place finish.

DIRTcar Pro Late Models saw 15 entries.
Qualifying results:

  1. #130 Chase Osterhoff 14.007 New Track Record
  2. #11E Curtis Eller 14.283
  3. #25 Dakota Ewing 14.325
  4. #10C Colby Eller 14.439
  5. #14D Dalton Mannin 14.468

Chase Osterhoff placed himself into the record books by unseating Gary Schalmo as Charleston Speedway Track Record holder in the DIRTcar Pro Late Model division. Schalmo has held the title since 2023 when he posted a time of 14.183. Osterhoff decisively raised the bar with his fastest lap time of 14.007, almost 2 tenths faster than the previous record! With a new track record in his pocket, Osterhoff started P1 in heat 1 and led every lap. Heat 2 was won by 2nd quick time qualifier, Curtis Eller. The front row of the feature would be Osterhoff and Eller. Eller experienced trouble on lap 1 causing the caution, so he would have to try and fight back through the whole field. Brother to Curtis, the #10C of Colby Eller would be gifted the front row outside starting position. The green flag fell and from his 3rd starting position, #25 Dakota Ewing worked his way past the front row to lead lap 1. Osterhoff settled in behind him and would stalk him for the next 14.5 laps, entering turn 3, Osterhoff committed to a “hail mary slider” on Ewing, as they exited, the 2 touched, out of respect, Osterhoff lifted so as to not destroy both cars. Ewing was able to get clear and pick up the feature win! Osterhoff held onto 2nd and Rocket Bennett quietly snuck up through the field from his 8th starting position to finish 3rd!
Unfortunately for Osterhoff this was the second time tonight that he followed the #25 of Ewing across the finished line. In the “make-up” feature for the DIRTcar Pro Late Models, #10C Colby Eller qualified for the pole, with #25 Dakota Ewing starting front row outside. In this event, #130 Chase Osterhoff started P4, and by lap 2 had made his way to the top spot. Osterhoff led all of the laps except the one that counted. Ewing managed to make his way to 2nd on lap 7, and on the last lap did what he had to do, laid it all on the line and ripped the checkered flag from Osterhoff’s grasp at the last minute! Osterhoff had to settle for 2nd to Ewing’s domination once again. Colby Eller was able to salvage a good finish crossing the line in 3rd. The DIRTcar Pro Late Models put on some excellent racing this Saturday, this is definitely a division you don’t want to miss!

DIRTcar Stock Car division had a low car count, seeing only 5 entries.
Ryan Taylor in the #5 was able to navigate through traffic from his 4th starting position to win the heat race. #5D Jordan Smith had handling issues and was no match for the speed of Taylor. Taylor started the feature P1, and Smith P2. When the green flag fell, it became abundantly clear that Smith had made significant changes to his machine and jumped out to lead lap 1 all the way to number 15. Taylor stayed in the hunt as much as he could, but Smith laid it all on the line, lap after lap, finishing 1.982 seconds ahead of 2nd. Devin Hoskins in the #10 rounded out the podium in 3rd.

DIRTcar Factory Stock saw 13 entries.
Qualifying results:
1.#65 Wally Kerst 16.445
2. #11S John Strawser 16.820
3. #42 Jesse Simmons 14.951
4. #27 Mike Reitz 16.952
5. #16 Alex Troxtell 17.018

Jesse Simmons would win heat 1 while Mike Reitz picked up the heat win in heat 2. Simmons and Reitz would occupy the front row. On lap 1 of the feature, the #42 of Simmons experienced mechanical issues and drew the caution flag. That handed the pole starting position to #65 Wally Kerst. Kerst took advantage of the new blessing and made the best out of it. Despite Jesse Simmons working his way through the field to finish 2nd, noone had anything to challenge Kerst as he led every lap. #11S John Strawser turned his 4th starting position into a 3rd place podium finish.
Before intermission, we ran the “make-up” feature from May 4, 2024 for the DIRTcar Factory Stocks as well. #65 Wally Kerst qualified to start P1 along side #27 Mike Reitz. Kerst jumped out early to lead lap 1 and 2, but Reitz, with his car dialed in, said “not so fast” as he passed Kerst to lead laps 3 and 4. Learning where Reitz was stronger than himself, Kerst made a driving adjustment and retook the lead from Reitz on lap 5 and never looked back. Reitz would have to settle for 2nd, while Jesse Simmons drove the wheels off of his #42 machine to finish 3rd from his 13th starting position, no doubt giving him the Hard Charger award! Extensive post race tech of the #65 car of Wally Kerst, including significant engine tech, revealed the Kerst hot rod is within specs, none of what was inspected was found to be outside the parameters of the rules, so Kerst stands all alone as the only driver to win a feature in 2024 in DIRTcar Factory Stock. Who will be the one that breaks his 3 win streak? Be there to see it live!!

DIRTcar Hornets saw 11 entries.
Heat races were won by #19 Dee Friar and #0X Brandon Babb. There seemed to be a bit of confusion that Babb had only won a few features, when in fact that was feature win #13 for Babb. This division has been dominated this season by #26J Danny White Jr, but Friar was starting P1 to White’s P5 so Friar knew he had to get away from the pack quick and do everything he could because it was likely that White was coming. Friar did just what he had to do by jumping to the lead early and controlling the tempo of the race. White managed to get to P2 by lap 3, but Friar had a 1/2 a second lead on him by then. White slowly started chipping away at Friar’s lead, getting within a tenth of a second from him, but Dee Friar refused to be denied and picked up his first feature win of 2024 as he pumped his fist with excited out the window crossing the finish line. White would have to settle for 2nd while #44DD Airn McRill held onto his 3rd starting position to finish 3rd.

The racing has been awesome, lap after lap, week after week. Brad Agney and his crew have absolutely been flawless with track prep, smooth, wide and racey every time cars hit the track. Fan attendance has been phenomenal as well as our car counts. If you have not made it out to the Speedway yet this season, you are missing out!!

REMINDER: this coming weekend, May 25, 2024 there will be NO STOCK CAR RACING AT ALL. The Flat Track Motorcycles of the National Flat Track Racing Series will take on the Charleston Speedway for 2 days for their Illinois State Championship. This is a 2 day show, both Friday and Saturday, if you like flat track motorcycles, the Charleston Speedway will be the place to be this weekend!

As always, be sure to check out, and purchase a few of the MANY photos that were taken at the Speedway right here:
ALL Photo credits to York Photography.


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