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IRA Sprints

RECENT BUMPER TO BUMPER IRA MEMBERSHIPS TO BOOST ALREADY STRONG FIELD OF 410 SPRINTS

Anticipation builds for season opener at Beaver Dam Raceway This Saturday!

April 23, 2014; Beaver Dam, WI. – Memberships continued to be filed for participation in this season’s Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint Series tour. The 2014 campaign will feature 30 events at 15 different tracks and showcase some of the finest winged 410 Sprint racing in the Midwest. The season opening show will be held at Beaver Dam Raceway this Saturday night April 26th. Teams filing memberships generally participate in 75% of the shows allowing them to be eligible for post season awards. With the addition of recent memberships the main core will consist of over two dozen drivers vying for their share of awards and prizes at the end of season banquet.

One of the most recent drivers to file a membership is former World of Outlaw standout Bill Rose of Plainfield, Indiana. For three straight years Rose ran the entire World of Outlaws schedule completing each season in the top 15 in points. Rose will be competing closer to home this season and is expected to make a fair number of IRA events. The veteran racer is anticipating making his first start of the season in the IRA opener at Beaver Dam.

Two-time IRA champion Travis Whitney is also expected to make some additional shows this year. Whitney of Coon Rapids, MN recorded a pair of second place performances last season in IRA competition including the season ending event at Beaver Dam where he finished runner-up to Bill Balog. Whitney is looking to add to his IRA series win total where he has scored 31 career A-main victories.

Jordan Goldesberry of Springfield, IL ended the 2013 season with the Bumper to Bumper IRA Sprints earning back to back top five finishes in his last two appearances with the series. Goldesberry finished second at Oshkosh Speedzone on Friday Night September 13th and came back the next day to record a fourth place performance at the Plymouth Dirt Track. Goldesberry is primed for success in the IRA Sprints and additional appearances could lead to that elusive A-main event victory.

A new team to hit the series this year will be Hartnell Motorsports. The team recently announced that Rob Hartnell will pilot the #47h sprint car this year. Hartnell has raced a 410 sprint cars during the 1998 and 1999 seasons and participated again in 2006. The 47H Hartnell Motorsports Custom Diecast house car will be competing at the Wilmot Raceway, Plymouth, Beaver Dam, and 141 Speedway this season. Car owner Chris Hartnell will be the crew chief.

Other IRA teams have been preparing for the season opening show at Beaver Dam by participating in other Midwest racing programs. This past week two-time series champion Scotty Neitzel ventured to Illinois and Missouri running a pair of contests to fine tune his ride recording two top 10 A-main performances.

Teammates Russel Borland and Blake Nimee turned laps at Oshkosh Speedzone which held a recent practice. Rookie of the year competitor Ben Schmidt was also in attendance at Oshkosh haunted my mechanical gremlins which should now be worked out for opening day.

Fellow rookie Scott Thiel also went trackside to prepare for the season opening show turning laps at Beaver Dam Raceway and he was joined by long time series front runner Mike Reinke as both drivers tested Beaver Dam Raceway’s new surface.

The banked, third-mile, clay oval will be hosting an all-sprint car show featuring the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw 410 Sprints. The MSA 360 Sprints series will also be presenting a full program. Between the two groups nearly 70 sprint cars are expected for the show.

The April 26th race program will see the pit gates opening at 3:30pm and the grandstand will open at 4:30pm. Racing action is set to get underway at 6:30 pm.

General admission is $20 for adults, with a youth ticket being sold for $10 to fans ages 6 through 11. Children ages 5 and under are admitted FREE with a paid adult.

Event information can be found on the Beaver Dam Raceway website at www.wismotorsports.net or by calling the track at (920) 887-1600. Beaver Dam Raceway is located on Racetrack Road just east of the intersection of Hwy 151 and 33 in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin.

IRA proudly moves into 2014 backed by its long time supporting series partners led by title sponsor Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts & Service Centers, and associate series partners Osborn & Son Trucking, TW Metals, Hoosier Tire, Cummins Onan, and Carriage Auto Body.

The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints are a featured member of Racetext.net a website dedicated to bringing fans the best possible coverage of local short track racing.

For more information on the IRA Outlaw Sprints check out the tour website at www.irasprints.com or by logging onto the series Facebook page at www.facebook.com/irasprints the series is also on twitter at #IRA_sprints.

 

 

BUMPER TO BUMPER IRA OUTLAW SPRINT OPENER TO TAKE PLACE AT BEAVER DAM RACEWAY

Wipperfurth Memorial to kick of 2014 racing season!

April 20, 2014; Beaver Dam, WI. – It’s a change of plans! Weather related issues postponed the planned season opening event which was to have been held at Oshkosh Speedzone this past Saturday afternoon.

Now for the second year in a row it will be Beaver Dam Raceway which will host the opening race of the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint series with the running of the Jim Wipperfurth Memorial race on Saturday night April 26th.

Considered the northern home track for the series, Beaver Dam Raceway shares the honor with Wilmot Raceway in hosting five events during the season, the most of any facility during the 2014 campaign.

The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints will make appearances at Beaver Dam Raceway on four additional Saturday Nights; appearing on May 17th, June 7th, August 2nd and September 20th.

The banked, third-mile, clay oval is notable for its outstanding events last season, two of which went into the record books. The first race at Beaver Dam Raceway in 2013 earned the distinction for one of the closest finishes in series history. Six-time series champion, Bill Balog, managed to edge out Mike Kertscher in a drag race to the finish line by a mere .009 seconds. That margin was calculated at less than six inches and the pass was made during the final 50 feet of the event with both drivers on the edge of control heading for the finish line.

Kertscher would follow up that runner-up performance on opening day with a victory of his own two weeks later at Beaver Dam Raceway.

The track also provided the other bookend to the season as the final race of the 2013 was held at the facility and that show was a remarkable event for two reasons.

First, when Balog crossed the line after fending off two-time series champion, Travis Whitney, for the first place, it elevated Balog’s A-main win total to 62 putting him atop the all-time modern era win list breaking a tie with nine-time series titlist, Joe Roe, who had amassed 61 victories.

Secondly, the contest was run green to checkered with all 30 laps going in the books in a mere 6 minutes and 47 seconds making it one of the fastest completed A-mains the series has ever ran thanks to a well groomed racing surface.

The April 26th race program will see the pit gates opening at 3:30pm and the grandstand will open at 4:30pm. Racing action is set to get underway at 6:30 pm.

The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints should have over 30 of the best 410 sprint drivers in the Midwest on hand. They will be joined by the MSA 360 Sprints for a complete evening of open-wheeled racing action featuring a field of over 60 total sprint cars between the two classes.

General admission is $20 for adults, with a youth ticket being sold for $10 to fans ages 6 through 11. Children ages 5 and under are admitted FREE with a paid adult.

Event information can be found on the Beaver Dam Raceway website at www.wismotorsports.net or by calling the track at (920) 887-1600. Beaver Dam Raceway is located on Racetrack Road just east of the intersection of Hwy 151 and 33 in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin.

IRA proudly moves into 2014 backed by its long time supporting series partners led by title sponsor Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts & Service Centers, and associate series partners Osborn & Son Trucking, TW Metals, Hoosier Tire, Cummins Onan, and Carriage Auto Body.

The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints are a featured member of Racetext.net a website dedicated to bringing fans the best possible coverage of local short track racing.

For more information on the IRA Outlaw Sprints check out the tour website at www.irasprints.com or by logging onto the series Facebook page at www.facebook.com/irasprints the series is also on twitter at #IRA_sprints.

 

 

FROM ROOKIE OF THE YEAR TO SENSATIONAL SOPHOMORE – JEREMY SCHULTZ LOOKS AHEAD TO 2014 SEASON

King of the Sherm Nation Back in Action With the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints!

April 16, 2014; Appleton, WI. – Looking back over the past several seasons, the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint Series had has an insurgence of new talent into the series. The 2013 Rookie of the Year chase saw Jeremy Schultz emerge from a talented rookie pool into one of the series front runners and title contender in the course of a single season.

While this success seemed to happen overnight it was a path which began a good number of years ago.

A second generation racer, Jeremy, grew up around the sport watching his father Jerry compete in Eastern Wisconsin Supermodifieds at Plymouth and later in the Bandit 360 sprints at Beaver Dam. With the itch to get more involved in the sport growing with each passing season Jeremy soon found himself working on the pit crew of fellow Beaver Dam native Scotty Neitzel.

“Neitzel’s had been a friend of my family for years, probably before I was even born. My dad worked with those guys for a long time”, noted Schultz. “Growing up saw the race cars my dad and Scotty had and I knew one day I wanted to do it for myself. I finally got my hands dirty helping Scotty when I was 16”, claimed Schultz.

Working on Neitzel’s crew would garner the experience needed to prepare a sprint car and the knowledge gained would be an invaluable asset when he later started his own racing career.

“I learned pretty much everything I know about sprint cars from working with him (Scotty Neitzel), Rick Lemanski, and Harry working out at R&H Enterprises. Scotty taught me to be meticulous in the building of the race cars and that good equipment is key to being successful in this sport”, noted Schultz who was quick to point out that it was the time helping Neitzel that laid the groundwork for his success. “I've said it before and I'll say it again, I wouldn't be where I am today without him. In the years I helped him we put together two championship seasons and a ton of great racing memories traveling with the IRA”, exclaimed Schultz.

Jeremy would make the transition from crew member to driver in 2007 running a limited schedule behind the wheel of a 360 sprint at area tracks before diving headlong into the fray in 2008, running a 40 race schedule. Schultz would narrowly miss the MSA 360 rookie of the year honor but he would earn the rookie title at the Plymouth Dirt Track.

The groundwork had been laid for an even more successful 2009 campaign where he captured “Most Improved Driver Honors” with MSA earning a fifth place point finish. During that time Schultz’s dedicated crew began to take form.

“I'm so grateful to have a team that stands behind me like my guys do. From Jay Zamzow, who has been with me in my racing career from day one to my brother, Jason Schultz, and my father Jerry Schultz, to Dan Nesper and Eric Fhlug, who I met 360 racing and he decided to join my team a couple years ago. Then there's Reggie Hummelmeier and Kyle Peters that come and help at the track as well. I'm pretty lucky to have such a dedicated group of guys working to make us fast.”, declared Schultz. “My parents I cannot thank enough for all the support they have given me through the past six years encouraging me to do the best I can!”

With a solid crew in place Schultz would climb to the top of area 360 sprint racing. In 2011, he would earn five A-main victories enroute to a third place point finish in MSA before ascending to the top of the ladder in 2012 collecting the championship in MSA and at Plymouth as well.

It was during the 2012 season Schultz began to toy with the idea of running with the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw 410 Sprints. “Having the opportunity to race with guys like Mike Reinke, Bill Balog, Tommy Sexton, BK, Lance Fassbender, Mike Kertscher, Steve Meyer, Scotty Neitzel, and every other great driver in the IRA is a privilege and a dream come true for a kid who all he wanted to do is race a sprint car.”, exclaimed Schultz.

His initial foray into the 410 sprints proved successful as he notched three top five runs in his six appearances he made during the 2012 season including an impressive podium finish in his debut race held at the tight quarter-mile bullring, the 141 speedway.

This set the stage for what many consider one of the most impressive rookie seasons in IRA history. Schultz came into 2013 having to compete for rookie honors against his friend and former 360 champion, Lance Fassbender, as well as midget standout, Bryon Walters.

“Last year was pretty amazing for me and my team. Going into the season my only thoughts were to try and be competitive and I really wanted to be the rookie of the year. I knew Lance and Bryon Walters were gonna be running for it also. Knowing Lance for a very long time and racing with him previously in the 360 cars I was excited to be able to race with him at the 410 level”, noted Schultz.

Walters would be plagued with mechanical troubles dropping him from the rookie chase while Fassbender kept the pressure on until well past mid-season. It was then that Fassbender suffered a mechanical failure at Beaver Dam Raceway which resulted in a season ending injury.

“Lance is one hell of a competitor and it sucked to see him get hurt last year mid-season and not be able to finish what he started. I would have been disappointed to finish behind him last season had it turned out that way, but I would have been happy for him if he would have got it because of the respect and friendship we have”, said Schultz.

It was during the final two months of the 2013 racing season that Schultz would earn his first taste of victory in the Bumper to Bumper IRA Sprints. On August 16th at Wilmot Raceway during the running of the Kenosha County Fair he would outrun six-time series champion Bill Balog taking an emotional victory.

Bowing down on one knee with his trophy Schultz acknowledged a frenzied crowd after the win.

“If you told me that I would have had the success we did, I don't think I would have believed you. It's amazing looking back that we were able to win one, much less two features last year along with the Wilmot track championship. I'm very blessed to have a great group of people who stand behind me.”, concluded Schultz.

Along the way, Schultz, who goes by the nickname Sherm, has gathered a very vocal and supportive fan base. One any given night his fans, known as the “Sherm nation”, are among the loudest of the cheering sections.

“My nickname ‘Sherm’ I have had forever. Harry made sure it was always on my car and it just grew from there. ‘Sherm nation’ took off in my Plymouth and Manitowoc days”, stated Schultz. Track announcers began to notice his large cheering section. “IRA Series announcer Ray Underwood, really pushed it last year and came up with “The King of the Sherm Nation” thing and it seems more popular now than ever,” Schultz said.

Schultz is dedicated to competing in the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints again in 2014 as he tries to go from Rookie of the Year to Sophomore Sensation.

“I'm looking forward to the start of a new season. Looking forward to trying some new tracks and competition. To giving the IRA tour another shot. I think it will be great to have other 360 guys coming up and racing with them again. It's tough, I'm not gonna lie. The competition in this group is stiff and you have to be on your “A” game every night. My goals for the year are to have fun and try and win some more races, the points will fall in place if we can accomplish those goals”, concluded Schultz.

However, the 2014 season turns out with the support and dedication of a loyal crew and fans base the future looks bright in sprint car racing for the King of the Sherm Nation.

Schultz’s racing efforts are supported by generous sponsorship from Crawford Oil and Propane, Jerry's Automotive, R&H Enterprises, LeRoy Meats and Catering, Weld Specialty, Schaeffer Oil, Maxim Chassis, Braun Maguire Jewlers, Port Yamaha, Veloicty Wings, Eilbes Trucking, Schultz Auto Body, AFCO, Schultz Auto Body, RC Custom Design, Competition Specialists, and Sander Engineering.

Schultz has a new website for the 2014 season at /www.jeremyschultzmotorsports.com and is also on Facebook and Twitter which can be reached through his website.

The 2014 Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint Series season will consist of 30 shows to be held this at 15 different area tracks.

The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints are a featured member of Racetext.net a website dedicated to bringing fans the best possible coverage of local racing.

IRA proudly backed by its long time supporting series partners led by title sponsor Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts & Service Centers, and associate series partners Osborn & Son Trucking, TW Metals, Hoosier Tire, Cummins Onan, and Carriage Auto Body.

For more information on the IRA Outlaw Sprints check out the tour website at www.irasprints.com or logging onto the series Facebook page at www.facebook.com/irasprints and on twitter at #IRA_sprints.

 

 

Old Man Winter Takes IRA Speedzone Opener, Event Rescheduled for May 4th

Recent Snow and Late Arriving Thaw Delay Start of 2014 Racing Season!

April 16, 2014; Oshkosh, WI. – The recent record setting winter had already put the pressure on local race tracks as they tried to whip their facilities into shape. This past weekend torrential rains and a hefty dose of snow would prove to be an exceptional due to several reason beyond the tracks control track officials in conjunction with the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint Series have opted to postpone the first 410 sprint race of the season at the third-mile, clay oval.

The 2014 schedule for the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints will still remain at 30 races as an agreement has been reached to reschedule the event for late afternoon on Sunday May 4th.

The season opening show for the series will now be the Joe Wipperfurth Memorial race to be held at Beaver Dam Raceway on Saturday night April 26. The event is an all open-wheeled show as the IRA Sprint headline the program supported by the MSA 360 sprint series.

The high powered machines of the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints will then return to Oshkosh Speedzone for the rescheduled contest on Sunday Afternoon May 4th.

Pit gates will open for the IRA show at noon, grandstands at 2:00pm, hot laps and qualifying at 4:00pm with racing expected to start at 5:00pm. Pit passes will be $30.00 for this event and purses for the supporting divisions will race for an increased purse. These divisions will be Outlaw Chassis Grand Nationals, Gold Star Racing Supply Street Stocks and Ellington Mutual Dirt Devils.

Admission for this special event is just $20 for adults while students ages 11 through 15 are admitted for $10.00. Children ages 10 and under are admitted free.

Fans and drivers can find additional details on the contest by visiting the track website at www.oshkoshspeedzone.net . Oshkosh Speedzone can also be found on Facebook at www.facebook.com/thespeedzone

Oshkosh Speedzone Raceway is a 1/3 mile semi-banked clay oval located at the Sunnyview Expo Center which resides near the intersection of Highways 76 and County Trunk Y in Oshkosh.

The 2014 Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint Series season will consist of 30 shows to be held this at 15 different area tracks.

The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints are a featured member of Racetext.net a website dedicated to bringing fans the best possible coverage of local racing.

IRA proudly backed by its long time supporting series partners led by title sponsor Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts & Service Centers, and associate series partners Osborn & Son Trucking, TW Metals, Hoosier Tire, Cummins Onan, and Carriage Auto Body.

For more information on the IRA Outlaw Sprints check out the tour website at www.irasprints.com or logging onto the series Facebook page at www.facebook.com/irasprints and on twitter at #IRA_sprints.

 

 

Oshkosh Speedzone Hosts 2014 Season Opener for the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints!

April 14, 2014; Appleton, WI. – It will have been 6 months and 29 days since racing fans last heard the sweet sound of the fuel injected, methanol powered 410 cubic inch engines of the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints series.

From the time the last 900 horsepower powerplant fell silent at Beaver Dam Raceway last September 23rd, until the first engine fires off for hot laps at 3:00pm on Saturday afternoon April 19th at Oshkosh, some 210 days of silence will have been in place in the series.

The Winged Warriors of one of the nation’s finest Outlaw 410 Winged Sprint series will test Oshkosh Speedzone’s semi-banked, wide sweeping turns and thrill fans with speeds exceeding 120 mph on the third-mile, clay oval.

Bill Balog ended the 2013 season in victory lane at Beaver Dam Raceway, a win which knocked off nine-time series champion, Joe Roe, from the top all-time win list. Balog, with his 62 victories now sits atop that pedestal. Last season, Balog wrapped up his sixth consecutive series title, and his two wins at Oshkosh Speedzone surely helped in that effort.

Balog will be seeking his fifth straight Speedzone victory. The last time he was shut out of the winners circle was August of 2011 when Mike Kertscher relegated Balog to a second place finish.

For Balog the first major goal will be getting to the track as he has a sponsor appearance before the IRA opening show leaving precious little time to arrive at the track and prepare for action.

Balog’s on track rivals are also primed for action.

Jeremy Schultz, last year’s point runner-up, has gone from rookie of the year titlist to hoping to become the series sophomore sensation. In his rookie year behind the wheel of a 410 sprint, Schultz, collected a pair of victories and the 2013 Wilmot Speedway track title. It’s no easy task in a highly competitive Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint series field and Schultz is now up for the challenge of proving his rookie season was no fluke.

Schultz has already fired up is 2014 ride, shaking the car down running an event at I-34 Speedway in Iowa last week. He now hopes to get a handle on Oshkosh Speedzone, a track which has thus far proved quite a challenge to the Beaver Dam native having kept him locked out of a top five finish.

Two-time champion, and last season’s third place point runner, Scotty Neitzel, has already tasted action in 2014, as he also ventured to Iowa for a pre-season shakedown. At that event Neitzel found the speed to make the A-main and will be tweaking his ride in preparation for the Oshkosh event hoping to find even more velocity.

Neitzel garnered a pair of top five performances last year at Oshkosh including a third place run in the series’ most recent appearance as he chased both Balog and young charger, Jordan Goldesberry, to the finish line.

Last year’s fourth place point runner, Phillip Mock, collected a pair of runner-up performances during the campaign and will be back for that elusive final step, a trip to victory lane. Starting the year out with a victory at Oshkosh is the perfect way to do it.

Rounding out the top five finishers from last season was Russel Borland who is chomping at the bit to get the season started as part of a two car team effort. Borland and hard charging Illinois native, Blake Nimee, will be tackling the entire 2014 Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint series schedule. Borland hopes a little extra work under the hood and a newly built car will propel him to some podium finishes this year and a victory is the best way to be seen in a post-race podium photograph.

Other long time IRA competitors expected include cousins Scott and Dave Uttech, “Wild Bill” Wirth, Wayne “Mojo” Modjeski, the father and son team of Kris and Dennis Spitz and many more. In fact, the vast majority of drivers competing on the tour last season are expected to be back in action this year.

Add to that list a rejuvenated Mike Reinke a perennial title contender, who expects to swing back into action at Oshkosh Speedzone and tough veteran driver, Steve Meyer, who is always around the front of the pack when he makes an appearance.

Toss in an expected epic rookie battle with former 360 standout pilots Ben Schmidt and Scotty Thiel who are challenging not only each other for the Rookie of the Year honors, but are expected to battle for A-main wins and the possibility of the season crown.

Lance Fassbender who had last year’s rookie effort cut short by an injury is also expected to return. Many involved with the series are looking forward to the return of the popular driver.

Pit gates will open promptly at noon for the late afternoon event at Oshkosh Speedzone this coming Saturday, April 19th. The grandstand will be opened up at 2:00pm with hot laps set to begin at 3:00pm. Qualifying will follow the hot lap sessions with the first race expected to hit the track around 4:00pm.

The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints will be joined by three fendered classes including Grand Nationals, Street Stocks and the 4 cylinder Dirt Devils.

Admission for this special event is just $20 for adults while students ages 11 through 15 are admitted for $10.00. Children ages 10 and under are admitted free.

Fans and drivers can find additional details on the contest by visiting the track website at www.oshkoshspeedzone.net . Oshkosh Speedzone can also be found on Facebook at www.facebook.com/thespeedzone

Oshkosh Speedzone Raceway is a 1/3 mile semi-banked clay oval located at the Sunnyview Expo Center which resides near the intersection of Highways 76 and County Trunk Y in Oshkosh.

The 2014 Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint Series season will consist 30 shows to be held this at 15 different area tracks.

The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints are a featured member of Racetext.net a website dedicated to bringing fans the best possible coverage of local racing.

IRA proudly backed by its long time supporting series partners led by title sponsor Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts & Service Centers, and associate series partners Osborn & Son Trucking, TW Metals, Hoosier Tire, Cummins Onan, and Carriage Auto Body.

For more information on the IRA Outlaw Sprints check out the tour website at www.irasprints.com or logging onto the series Facebook page at www.facebook.com/irasprints and on twitter at #IRA_sprints.

 

 

EPIC ROOKIE OF THE YEAR BATTLE LIES AHEAD IN BUMPER TO BUMPER IRA OUTLAW SPRINT SERIES

360 Sprint Graduates Ben Schmidt and Scott Thiel to Duel for Checkered Flags In Rookie Chase!

April 7, 2014; Appleton, WI. – New incoming talent is the key to the longevity of any racing series and over the past several seasons the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints has seen an influx of highly competitive rookie drivers set to thrill the next generation of fans.

The source of this talent the past several years have been graduates of area 360 sprint car racing. These drivers have competed weekly at the Plymouth Dirt Track and Manitowoc County Expo and their migration to 410 sprints have added to an already deep talent pool in the IRA series.

Last season rookies, Jeremy Schultz and Lance Fassbender, were both inside the top ten in points when Fassbender had an unfortunate injury which left Schultz to blaze a trail to the Rookie of the Year title. Along the way Schultz captured two wins and finished second to six time champion, Bill Balog, in the season point chase. It was perhaps the best ever performance by a rookie in series history. Before Schultz the best anyone had done during their rookie season in the past dozen years was Mike Kertscher who finished fifth in points during the 2003 campaign.

360 graduates also took rookie of the year honors in 2012 when Robbie Pribnow earned that honor with an eighth place point finish and in 2011 it was another 360 sprint standout T.J. Luedtke taking the rookie title. The common thread, each of these racers jumped from the 360 sprints to the more powerful 410 cubic inch power plants of the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints and enjoyed immediate success.

One has to go back to the 2002 season to find two rookies finishing in the top ten when Todd King edged out Scott Uttech for the honor finishing 7th and 8th respectively in the standings.

Enter the 2014 season and we have candidates Ben Schmidt of Howards Grove and Scott Thiel of Sheboygan. On par with last season’s rookie clash both drivers will not only be racing each other for supremacy but both are a legitimate threat to win races and have a shot at the series title as well.

Rhine Auto Motorsports was the first of the two teams to announce their plans for the 2014 season. Schmidt, who has been driving for the team since the 2010 season, has had a great deal of success in the 360 ranks. Schmidt actually began his racing career in a fendered car,

driving street stocks at Plymouth. Schmidt got his first taste of open wheeled racing running an event with the World of Outlaws in 2006. “After running my first sprint car race against the Outlaws at Princeton in 2006 in Alex Bleisner’s car, we knew it was time to get rid of the fenders. So we got a MSA 360 for the following year, but ran on a very limited budget”, noted Schmidt.

Schmidt caught the eye of car owner Mike Urner, who had fielded cars for decades at the Sheboygan County Fairpark in Plymouth and gave Schmidt an opportunity to drive for the Rhine Auto Motorsports team. Since joining forces the team has collected 21 A-main victories and 4 championship trophies.

“Success wouldn't have been possible without the help of my car owner Mike Urner. The next natural step is to move up into the 410 ranks. I believe my crew is up for the challenge of putting a competitive car out there every week”, said Schmidt. Craig Urner will serve as crew chief keeping the Maxim chassis based machine in tune.

Schmidt understands the challenges ahead. “Running for the IRA will be tough. Bill Balog, Scotty Neitzel, Steve Meyer, and Mike Reinke are all hard to beat. And now with Scotty Thiel committed to run against us for Rookie of the Year, it will make for an interesting season. We got our feet wet toward the end of last season, had a couple of good runs, and hope to continue that in 2014”, Schmidt stated.

Schmidt, has in fact, already had a podium finish having claimed runner-up honors at his home track in Plymouth during the fair last year. A couple days later he was in the lead running for the win at 141 Speedway when he encountered engine difficulties.

He summed up his thoughts on the season ahead in an excited manner, “I can’t be any more excited to get this 2014 season started!”, exclaimed Schmidt.

Schmidt’s machine will be supported by Rhine Auto Inc., Schetter Electric, Adell Auto Center, Hopf Farms, Odyssey Fun Center, Hepfner Racing Products, K&N Performance and Roy's Tree Lot.

Fans can follow Schmidt’s efforts on the team webpage at www.facebook.com/rhineautomotorsports35 or on twitter @RhineAuto35

While much of Schmidt’s success has come close to home, Scott Thiel is a true barnstormer having run for victories far more than attempting to win championships. His advantage is the sheer number of different tracks he’s competed on.

Thiel began his racing career at the age of six starting out in snowmobiles. Over time he developed his skill on the ice and collected several titles along the way including the USSA Semi-Pro Sprint 600 Championship. During the summers he would turn his talents to kart racing winning three track championships in Shawano at the USA International Raceway.

Putting snowmobiles and karts behind him, Thiel made the jump to 360 sprint car racing in 2008 capturing Rookie of the Year honors at Plymouth Dirt Track. In the past six seasons that the

team has been racing sprint cars, they have had great success. The team has collected 16 A-main wins and topped the $5,000 to win Open Wheel Nationals in 2013.

Thiel had also tested the waters with IRA last season with three finishes in the top ten while running an ASCS based 360 engine. His best run was a solid 5th place showing at the 141 Speedway on Memorial Day weekend.

A jump to the 410 sprints of the Bumper to Bumper IRA outlaw Sprint series was the next obvious challenge for the young charger.

“I’m very exciting to join the IRA tour in 2014 as we plan on running 100% of the races this season. Our team ran a handful of events last year with the IRA and did very well considering we were using our ASCS 360 engine. Qualifying was our struggle but we made every main and ran inside the top 10 each time, minus a crash at Oshkosh. We feel it is time as a team to move forward with our racing program and the IRA presented us this opportunity to race with a great series”, exclaimed Thiel.

For both Schmidt and Thiel confidence is running high based upon the success of last year’s Rookie of the Year, Jeremy Schultz, who had a similar path to the IRA through the 360 sprints.

“Our goals for the 2014 season is to contend for the Rookie of the Year honors and a championship. The 5j ( Jeremy Schultz ) showed last year that it is possible to do both as he just came up just short”, noted Thiel.

Thiel noted his sponsors were key to making the IRA effort possible. “Our marketing partners have backed us 110% on the decision to move up with our race program and, without them, this entire plan would not be possible”, concluded Thiel.

His efforts are supported by Professional Plating, Scott Thiel Builders, Complete Water, M-B Companies, D&H Sales & Service, Brad Dahmer Motorsprots, Ti22 Performance, Kaemmer Foods, Triple X Chassis, Velocity Wings, Super Shox, CSI Suspension, and Velocita Race Suits. Fans can follow his efforts by checking www.scottythiel.com or on the teams social media pages: Twitter: @scottythiel64 | Facebook: Scotty Thiel #64 Fan Page – www.scottythiel.com.

Whatever the outcome fans are in for as treat as both talented rookies will be pushing each other hard for the rookie of the year title and A-main victories.

IRA proudly moves into 2014 backed by its long time supporting series partners led by title sponsor Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts & Service Centers, and associate series partners Osborn & Son Trucking, TW Metals, Hoosier Tire, Cummins Onan, and Carriage Auto Body.

The 2014 season is currently scheduled to get underway on Saturday, April 19th. The late afternoon show at the Oshkosh Speedzone Raceway will mark the first of 30 shows to be held this season at 15 different area tracks. Action on the semi-banked third mile oval will begin with hot laps and qualifying at 3:00pm with racing to follow.

The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints are a featured member of Racetext.net a website dedicated to bringing fans the best possible coverage of local racing.

For more information on the IRA Outlaw Sprints check out the tour website at www.irasprints.com or logging onto the series Facebook page at www.facebook.com/irasprints

 

 

HELPING HAND LEADS TO TEAM EFFORT

Russel Borland and Blake Nimee Team Up for 2014 Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Series Assault!

April 5, 2014; Appleton, WI. – Racing is a competitive sport. Gaining an advantage on your fellow competitor is one of the keys to victory lane. Why then would one competitor help another to be faster? Perhaps it’s about elevating the competition, but sometimes it’s about helping a fellow racer that’s struggling a bit, to get better.

Russell Borland had done just that, and in return he was able to gain a teammate for the 2014 racing season. Two drivers sharing setups and information which will elevate both their race programs, hopefully propelling them to victory lane.

How did it happen? Lets look back a bit. Blake Nimee a resident of Oswego, Illinois, started his racing career with the assistance of his grandfather, Robert Kammerer. Kammerer was a standout competitor in regional sprint and midget racer who had won the UARA Midget Championship at Joliet Memorial Stadium in 1979. After retiring from the sport Kammerer returned to racing to help his grandson Blake Nimee learn the ropes.

For the next 13 years Nimee and his grandfather worked up the ranks to sprint car racing, unfortunately Kammerer lost his battle with cancer. Undaunted, Blake and his father purchased a car and continued his racing career which Robert Kammerer had set in motion. While the team has some success there were times when Nimee struggled for speed and surely could use an additional helping hand or two in the pits.

Enter Russel Borland, a driver who jumped behind the wheel of a 410 sprint to start his racing career in 2007. During his first season Borland would wind up runner-up for Rookie of the Year honors and slowly improved with each passing season. By 2012 Borland had become a top five competitor on the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint circuit. He was now a threat to win races, looking for a way to reach the podium by the time Nimee first appeared on the IRA circuit.

By now Borland had become known as one of the more consistent drivers on the circuit as well ask for his sharp looking equipment and his dedication to the tour, often completing seasons with 100% participation in events.

The pair did battle on several occasions heading into the 2013 season. It was at LaSalle where Borland had noticed Nimee and his father were struggling a bit and extended an offer to assist the young charger.

Nimee explained his situation, “The challenges you overcome speak volumes about your accomplishments throughout the year. In my case, getting a car to the track was a sonic boom. We had motor issues, overheating, driveline issues...and not enough time. After we were plagued with problems at LaSalle Speedway In Illinois”, noted the young charger. Borland approached Nimee with an offer of assistance. “Russel approached me and basically said ‘Bring the car up to my house, I'll get it going right and we will hit up a few races together and see how it goes’." and the team effort began.

Borland knew of Nimee’s background, “After the passing of his grandpa with a long fight against cancer. Blake's dad decided to continue what his grandpa started. So they bought a car and I noticed they were struggling with setups so I started helping them out”, noted Borland.

“Things started going good for both of us. Starting near the end of last season he's been running out of my shop. We both built brand new identical cars to help with setups and R&D. Blake's 2014 car is a tribute car to his grandpa”, explained Borland.

Heading into 2014 both drivers have their game plan. For Borland the goal is to continue to edge toward the top of the standings and capture his first career A-main victory. He will be supported by his sponsors Pro Renovations, Wiese Trucking, The Other Bar in Waupun, WI, Dynamic Pet Palace, Roger and Dan’s Auto service, Litegard, AEC engines, TNT enterprises, Reeds Chrysler and TD graphics.

Nimee, meanwhile, will honor his grandfather’s legacy with a tribute car. Nimee noted his place for the season. “This season is really about honoring his legacy. I am doing a replica of one of his cars from the 70's this year and I'm told, when he started to come into his own, people recognized him by the car I am paying tribute to, with a few added inspirations of my own.”, stated Nimee.

“As for my intentions for 2014 the plan is to continue to learn about the car, have strong and consistent finishes and keeping it in one piece. I honestly feel like everything has come together for my strongest season yet. I can't wait to being the 2014 offensive!”, exclaimed Nimee.

Pro Renovations, TD Graphics, Roger and Dan's Auto Shop, and Advanced Engine Concepts grace the side of the car as Nimee’s sponsors.

The pair are looking to compete in every Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint series event and Borland noted his intentions to compete in a couple local World of Outlaws events.

With a two team effort in place, 2014 looks to be a very successful season for both drivers. Borland had reached out to lend a helping and gained a teammate in the process. Expect both drivers to be racing each other and the rest of the field for the checkered flag.

IRA proudly moves into 2014 backed by its' long time supporting series partners, led by title sponsor Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts & Service Centers, and associate series partners Osborn & Son Trucking, TW Metals, Hoosier Tire, Cummins Onan, and Carriage Auto Body.

The 2014 season is currently scheduled to get underway on Saturday Night, April 19th at the Oshkosh Speedzone Raceway marking the first of 30 shows to be held this season at 15 different area tracks.

The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints are a featured member of Racetext.net a website dedicated to bringing fans the best possible coverage of local racing.

For more information on the IRA Outlaw Sprints check out the tour website at www.irasprints.com or logging onto the series Facebook page at www.facebook.com/irasprints

 

 

Midnight Oil Burns as Teams Prepare for 2014 Bumper to Bumper IRA Sprint Tour.

By Jeffrey Sachse

April 5, 2014; Appleton, WI - Slowly uncovered by a spring thaw, Wisconsin’s short tracks emerge from the frozen tundra. Soon some 15 different race facilities will be visited by the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints as teams prepare for the upcoming season. While some teams have been able to whip together their new creations, others are burning the midnight oil, building, tweaking and tuning, in preparation for the year ahead.

So far all but a pair of drivers, who had run 75% or more of the shows last season, have applied for memberships this year. In fact, it is expected that over two dozen teams will be attempting to qualify for end of season awards. Memberships are in hand for Bryon Walters, Brandon Thone, Steve Meyer, Jereme Schroeder, Scott Uttech, Jeremy Schultz, Dave Uttech, Bill Wirth, Blake Nimee as well as rookies Jason Tostenson, Ben Schmidt and Scott Thiel. They have joined veterans Mike Reinke, Kris Spitz, Dennis Spitz, Allen Hafford, Michael Decker, Darrell Dodd, Wayne Modjeski, Andy Hunt, Phillip Mock, Scotty Neitzel, and Russell Borland in filing paperwork for the upcoming year along with sophomore competitor Lance Fassbender.

One of the more recent memberships has been filed by dedicated veteran Darrell Dodd who will again attempt to run a majority of the 30 race schedule after mechanical ills cut his season short last year. Likewise sophomore driver Bryon Walters, whose rookie season was curtailed by engine woes, expects to be back for a full season of action. Lance Fassbender will be rebounding from a late season injury last year during his rookie season. Fassbender was running well within the top ten in points and had been nearing his first podium finish when a mechanical failure at Beaver Dam Raceway caused an injury which resulted in his abbreviated season.

One driver looking to ramp up his efforts for 2014 will be Jereme Schroeder who will be running over 75% of the shows to partake in post season awards. Schroeder’s uniquely colored machine has undergone some tweaks in the paint department and will stand out even more on the track this season. Allen Hafford is also back on board with the Bumper to Bumper IRA Sprints. The former drag racer is looking to run as many shows as possible in his Precisions Paving & Construction, Dave American Muffler, Silt Fencing Midwest and Bubba’s Excavating sponsored machine. Brandon Thone was among the first drivers to complete his 2014 ride and he has been patiently waiting for the season to start. Thone, who is sponsored by Mikes Utilities Construction, Hepfner Racing Products and RC Custom Designs has already taken to the track having competed in both All-Star Circuit of Champions and World of Outlaw sanctioned events in Florida in February.

Thone has indicated he’s looking for 100% participation with IRA this season as well as trying his hand in some additional World of Outlaw events when they travel to the area.

While Thone may be relaxing up until opening day, Dave Uttech will be hard at work putting in some late nights as he attempts to whip his ride together in time for the season opening show in Mid-April. Uttech will be fielding a new Maxim chassis based ride with Wesmar power. Uttech is dedicated to running all the IRA events in addition to three extra 410 sprint shows at the Wilmot Raceway. If that weren’t enough his Uttech Auto Repair, Lucas Oil, X-WrapsRace Graphics, Chutes and Ladders Pub, Greenville Auto sponsored car will also be seen at a pair of local World of Outlaw events.

Kurt Davis has spent the past several seasons collecting feature wins in Eastern Wisconsin with his 360ci powered ride. While Davis doesn’t know if he’ll have a 410 available for his IRA efforts he does intend to run a half dozen events looking at races held at Plymouth, 141, Oshkosh and perhaps Sun Prairie. While at a horsepower disadvantage, Davis has shown, under the right conditions he can still run up front. His Culver’s, Benkowski Properties, Stone Mountain Access and Kristine Hartmann Reality sponsored ride managed an impressive 4th place finish at the Sheboygan County Fair race while wielding a 360ci engine.

A couple new names testing the waters this season in IRA competition include Jason Tostenson and Steve Muth. Muth, who ran a limited number of shows the past couple seasons should be hitting the IRA circuit in early May hoping to run as many shows as possible, dedicating his season to his father who is currently battling stage 4 cancer. Muth, a former runner-up in MSA rookie points in 2006 has also raced vintage modifieds. His IRA ride is sponsored by Muth Custom Welding and Fabrication, Premier Auto Body and CarQuest Auto Parts.

Tostenson has been racing 360 and occasional 410 sprint cars in his home state of Minnesota and Iowa and will drive for Rhys Layton. Tostenson will likely appear at the Northern IRA shows and is planning to attend the Sun Prairie event in June.

Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint action can be seen at 15 different tracks this year. Beaver Dam and Wilmot Raceway's will play a major role as each will host 5 dates including the Jim Wipperfurth Memorial at Beaver Dam Raceway, and the Kenosha Co Fair doubleheader at Wilmot.

Sheboygan County Fair Park's Plymouth Dirt Track will host 3 shows, all of which, including the Sheboygan County Fair date, will be shared with the PDTR/MSA 360 Sprints.

Angell Park, Cedar Lake, Dodge Co, Oshkosh, and 141 will each have 2 events, while single visits will be contested at ABC, Amsoil Speedway (Superior), Eagle Valley, Langlade, LaSalle, Rice Lake, and Seymour.

IRA proudly moves into 2014 backed by its long time supporting series partners, led by title sponsor Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts & Service Centers, and associate series partners Osborn & Son Trucking, TW Metals, Hoosier Tire, Cummins Onan, and Carriage Auto Body.

2014 action goes green on April 19th at Oshkosh Speedzone and the final checkered waves September 27th at Dodge County Fairgrounds. For more information on the IRA Outlaw Sprints check out the tour website at www.irasprints.com or logging onto the series Facebook page at www.facebook.com/irasprints

The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints are also a featured member of Racetext.net which presents local short track news and highlights over a four state area. The site can be found at www.racetext.net

 

 

 

THE RETURN OF THE ROAR

Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints Set to Revisit Angell Park and Seymour Speedways!

March 15, 2014; Appleton, WI. – It’s that sound. A sound felt as much as heard. It happens when a full field of 22 drivers step on the “go pedal” as a green flag drops during a 410 sprint main event. It’s audio bliss, and, sadly it’s a sound that can’t be heard at every racetrack.

For two raceways joining the 2014 Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint schedule their fans will have a chance to discover first hand the roar of the Winged 410 Sprints doing battle at their home track as drivers turn loose the 900 horsepower engines.

After an absence of nearly three decades, 29 years to be exact, the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints will return to Angell Park Speedway located in Sun Prairie, WI. The third mile clay oval is hallowed ground to open-wheeled fans as the track had long been the home to the longest running weekly midget program in the history of the sport.

During the 1985 season the 410 Sprints appeared on three occasions, running a total of four feature events, as the final race held on August 7, 1985 would showcase a twin feature format. Four drivers that season had opportunity to visit victory lane with wins claimed by Dave Hanna, Rick Lemanski, Darrell Dodd and Joe Fote.

In addition to his A-main win in the first feature on that final race day, Dodd collected two of the three fast qualifying efforts, establishing the all-time track record of 13.742 seconds.

When looking at the drivers who competed during that 1985 season, Dodd is among three drivers who could be on hand for this year’s revival event as the three-time IRA champion still actively competes in the series. Likewise, Dennis Spitz, who took fifth in the last feature held is likely to be on hand for this seasons contests. Lemanski, was the July race winner in 1985, has since retired from driving but is crew chief for two-time series titlist Scotty Neitzel, who should be a threat to score a win almost 30 seasons after his car owner.

There will be two trips to Angell Park Speedway in 2014, both on Sunday evenings. The first visit will occur on June 1st with a return engagement on July 20th.

For fans of racing at the Seymour Speedway the wait for the roar of 410 sprints hasn’t been quite so long. The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints have twice visited the track since its reshaping to an oval in 2005. The last series event held at the track was during the 2008 racing season. Australian National champion, Brooke Tatnell, was victorious in the contest six seasons ago on August 31st, as he held off former IRA champion, Donny Goeden. Goeden was the evening’s fastest qualifier with a lap of 13.023 seconds.

As fast as that lap was on the banked third-mile oval, the current all-time track record belongs to two-time IRA champ Travis Whitney when he blistered the track in 12.672 seconds on September 2, 2007.

That contest was captured by Mike Reinke. The event ran green to checkered with the 30 laps clicking off in just a tick under eight minutes. Track record holder, Whitney, was second in that contest. Those two races mark the only two appearances for sprint cars at the Seymour Speedway since the track reconfiguration from a tri-oval.

Seymour fans will again “feel the roar” as the series revisits the banked third-mile clay oval on Sunday Night August 17th.

IRA proudly moves into 2014 backed by its long time supporting series partners led by title sponsor Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts & Service Centers and associate series partners Osborn & Son Trucking, TW Metals, Hoosier Tire, Cummins Onan, and Carriage Auto Body.

The 2014 season is currently scheduled to get underway on Saturday Night, April 19th at the Oshkosh Speedzone Raceway marking the first of 30 shows to be held this season at 15 different area tracks.

For more information on the IRA Outlaw Sprints check out the tour website at www.irasprints.com or logging onto the series Facebook page at www.facebook.com/irasprints

 

 

 

UNPRECIDENTED COMPETITION IN IRA ACTION THIS SEASON!

Teams lay ground work for season ahead with the Bumper to Bumper IRA Sprints!

February 27, 2014; Appleton, WI. – Locked dormant beneath layers of snow, Wisconsin’s wind whipped speedway’s are soon to be uncovered by the spring thaw, and with the thaw fans will begin to anticipate the forthcoming racing season.

Teams participating in the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint Series are already crafting their machinery and preparing for the highly competitive season ahead.

Some drivers have already jumped behind the wheel to shake off the dust and get an early start on the competition, while others are proudly displaying their 2014 season colors showcasing the rides they hope to place in victory lane.

Brandon Thone got the jump on the competition becoming the first IRA based team to log laps in the 2014 season. To do so Thone packed up and headed south to Volusia Speedway Park in Barberville, Florida where he participated in the DIRTcar Nationals turning laps with the World of Outlaws for their season opening contest, and testing the waters with the All-Stars. His #94 ride was sporting an impressive new paint scheme which will be witnessed this upcoming season when the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprints roar into action.

Likewise potential IRA “Rookie of the Year” candidate Scott Thiel sought out the sunshine state, heading to Florida’s East Bay Speedway where he participated in a multi-day event for 360 sprints. Thiel runs limited events with the IRA each season driving a car typically powered by an ASCS 360 power plant. With a 410 under the hood Thiel could become a real threat to victory lane in 2014.

While some teams have already taken to the clay, others have been showing their 2014 colors in climate-controlled environments closer to home. 2013 Bumper to Bumper IRA “Rookie of the Year”, Jeremy “Sherm” Schultz displayed his ride at the 7th Annual Race and Performance Expo in St. Charles, IL this past weekend. With a bold new look, plans are to contend for the 2014 title and dethrone 6-time IRA title holder Bill Balog.

Other teams have been announcing their 2014 racing intentions and giving fans a glimpse of the season ahead by posting on various social media. Russell Borland and Blake Nimee have joined forces presenting what is essentially a two car team. Both drivers are looking to be tough competition during the entire 2014 IRA schedule, which will consist of 30 events.

Some new and returning faces will include Brian Kristan who hopes to run the entire IRA schedule for the first time in several seasons. Kristan always a threat at a podium finish has seen limited action the past couple years. He drove in a couple races in 2013 driving a car for Chris Dodd.

Steve Muth is another driver looking to participate in 2014 tossing his hat in the ring competing for “Rookie of the Year” honors after doing some vintage Modified racing. Likewise Ben Schmidt will join the IRA full-time this coming year. Schmidt will be competing with the Rhine Auto Motorsports team which has had a great deal of success claiming multiple 360 sprint championships at Plymouth and Manitowoc. The past several rookie of the year title winners including Robbie Pribnow and Jeremy Schultz have graduated to 410 sprints from area 360 competition with a great deal of success.

Pribnow led the recent 360 insurgence into the IRA which has also included past 360 champion Lance Fassbender. Fassbender had a very solid season going in his rookie campaign last year before a season ending injury. We are extremely pleased to hear the second generation racer will be back again for the 2014 season.

Other teams announcing their intentions for the upcoming season include long time IRA supporters Kris and Dennis Spitz who plan to hit the trail with the IRA tour hoping to run 100% of the shows. Jeremy Schroeder looks to participate more in 2014 hoping to run at least 75% of the contests. Schroeder and his team have already completed much of the work on their 2014 ride.

Chad Tessman proved the spirit of competition is alive and well even with teams on a limited budget. After running nearly a full season last year he plans to be back, though running a bit more limited schedule in 2014.

Most of the familiar faces from last season are expected back, and with the announcements thus far the 2014 season looks like it will be an ultra competitive season for the IRA.

As snows begin to melt away more and more teams will begin to announce their plans and we hope to give you an insight of a very impressive field you will be seeing during Bumper to Bumper IRA Competition in 2014.

IRA proudly moves into 2014 backed by its' long time supporting series partners, led by title sponsor Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts & Service Centers, and associate series partners Osborn & Son Trucking, TW Metals, Hoosier Tire, Cummins Onan, and Carriage Auto Body.

The 2014 season is currently scheduled to get underway on Saturday Night, April 19th at the Oshkosh Speedzone Raceway marking the first of 30 shows to be held this season at 15 different area tracks.

For more information on the IRA Outlaw Sprints check out the tour website at www.irasprints.com or logging onto the series Facebook page at www.facebook.com/irasprints

 

 

30 RACES AT FIFTEEN TRACKS FOR IRA SPRINTS IN 2014
The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint Series proudly announce a 30 race slate for the winged 410's, which will be contested at 15 venues in 2014. 29 of the 30 dates will be held in Wisconsin, with Illinois hosting 1. "We're really fortunate to have so much interest from the tracks which are relatively close for most of our core teams", stated series President Steve Sinclair. "We definitely hit all the Wisconsin markets, and racing at 15 tracks certainly still gives us the travel feel." 13 of the 15 tracks appearing on the 2014 schedule hosted events in 2013. Seymour Speedway is back on after a few year absence, and the most highly publicized addition will be Angell Park Speedway in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin. IRA hasn't competed at Angell Park since 1985, but planned changes to the configuration should make the historic Midget venue more big car friendly. IRA and the Badger Midgets will share the event card on both Angell Park appearances.

Of course the Beaver Dam and Wilmot Raceway's will play a major role as each will host 5 dates including the Jim Wipperfurth Memorial at BDR, and the Kenosha Co Fair doubleheader at Wilmot. Sheboygan County Fair Park's Plymouth Dirt Track will host 3 shows, all of which, including the Sheboygan County Fair date, will be shared with the PDTR/MSA 360 Sprints. Angell Park, Cedar Lake, Dodge Co, Oshkosh, and 141 will each have 2 events, while single visits will be contested at ABC, Amsoil, Eagle Valley, Langlade, LaSalle, Rice Lake, and Seymour.

"This schedule is even a little more friendly than last year's. A few off weekends plus less work days, though we still have some double and triple header weekends. We even made the banquet location better and less expensive", said Sinclair who added, "We're blessed to have the support of so many good tracks, plus a tremendously loyal staff and core group of racers. 2014 should be another banner year for IRA".

The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint Series will again play host to the UNOH All-Star Circuit of Champions (Wilmot), and the MOWA presented by Casey's General Store Series (LaSalle) in co-sanctioned events. As per tradition, the IRA stays dark when the World of Outlaws are at IRA host tracks, allowing teams the opportunity to compete if they wish. These dates include Wilmot May 9th, Beaver Dam June 28th, and Cedar Lake June 29th.

IRA proudly moves into 2014 backed by its' long time supporting series partners, led by title sponsor Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts & Service Centers, and associate series partners Osborn & Son Trucking, TW Metals, Hoosier Tire, Cummins Onan, and Carriage Auto Body.

Action goes green on April 19th at Oshkosh, and the final checkered waves September 27th at Dodge Co.

2014 Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint Series Schedeule

April
19 Sat Oshkosh SpeedZone - Oshkosh, WI
26 Sat Beaver Dam Raceway - Beaver Dam, WI
May
17 Sat Beaver Dam Raceway
24 Sat Wilmot Raceway - Wilmot, WI
25 Sun 141 Speedway - Francis Creek, WI
31 Sat Cedar Lake Speedway - New Richmond, WI
June
1 Sun Angell Park Speedway - Sun Prairie, WI
7 Sat Beaver Dam Raceway
14 Sat Sheboygan Co Fair Park - Plymouth, WI
20 Fri Oshkosh SpeedZone
21 Sat Wilmot Raceway
July
11 Fri Dodge Co Fairgrounds - Beaver Dam, WI
12 Sat Rice Lake Speedway - Rice Lake, WI
19 Sat Wilmot Raceway (w/All Stars)
20 Sun Angell Park Speedway
25 Fri Langlade County Speedway - Antigo, WI (Fair)
26 Sat ABC Raceway - Ashland, WI
27 Sun Eagle Valley Speedway - Jim Falls, WI
August
2 Sat Beaver Dam Raceway
15 Fri Wilmot Raceway (Fair)
16 Sat Wilmot Raceway (Fair)
17 Sun Seymour Speedway - Seymour, WI
23 Sat LaSalle Speedway - LaSalle, IL (w/MOWA)
29 Fri Sheboygan Co Fair Park (Fair)
31 Sun 141 Speedway
September
5 Fri Amsoil Speedway - Superior, WI
6 Sat Cedar Lake Speedway
13 Sat Sheboygan Co Fair Park
20 Sat Beaver Dam Raceway
27 Sat Dodge Co Fairgrounds

November
22 Sat Brookfield Inn & Suites - Brookfield, WI (Banquet)

 

 

Wisconsin Dells, WI 11/30 The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint Series celebrated their 2013 season with their annual gala Saturday night at the Crystal Room at Buffalo Phil's, part of the Great Wolf Lodge complex in the popular Wisconsin Dells. A crowd in excess of two hundred attended to honor champion Bill Balog and seventeen of his fellow IRA teams. Over $63,000 in cash awards were distributed, which "additionally" was followed by IRA's popular prize package drawing in which all eighteen teams are winners as a variety of "actual" product, such as chassis, cylinder heads, wings, wheels, safety gear, shocks, etc, etc are presented. Host Ray Underwood and IRA President Steve Sinclair shared the microphone with all eighteen participation eligible teams present.
Following cocktails and dinner, the comedic Underwood welcomed the enthusiastic gathering and then introduced Jeff Fischer of Grandstand Video who provided a truly spectacular twenty-two minute music video highlighting the 2013 season. Sinclair then addressed the group, thanking them for their support and reminding them how special and unique of a series they have, and pointed out the dedication and loyalty of many are what help make IRA the long time success story they are, specifically emphasizing the dedication of secretary/treasurer Kim Tennyson, and that of long time title sponsor Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts & Service Centers. Sinclair then proceeded to hand out IRA Appreciation Awards to Bill Modjeski (Car Owner), Chad Tessman (Driver), Randy Westphal (Team(s) Sponsor), Lee Smith (Safety Team), Kevin Spease and Gered Tennyson (IRA Staff), and TW Metals, Carriage Auto Body, and Osborn & Son Trucking (Sponsors) who exemplify the characteristics that make IRA what it is.
Renae Schmidt, daughter-in-law of the late Rick Schmidt, then presented the prestigeous Rick Schmidt Memorial IRA Member of the Year Award to Rick Lemanski. Lemanski has spent over two decades supporting IRA as a driver, co-owner, sponsor, and for the past twenty years most notably as the crew chief of perennial IRA front runner Scotty Neitzel.
Next up was the Maxim Chassis / Gleason Equipment Top 10 Giv-A-Way which is a drawing among teams which either finished in the top 10 in points, or had 100% participation and do so utilizing a Maxim car. Phillip Mock was the lucky recipient a new 2014 Maxim chassis of the nine teams drawing, specifically thanking IRA's Maxim & Hoosier Tire dealer Howie Gleason for his tremendous support of both him, and the IRA series as a whole. Additionally, J&J Auto Racing in a nice gesture recognized their top IRA team, Russel Borland (5th), with a set of their new bird cages.
Underwood with the help of trophy presenter Jennifer Schmidt then handed out the checks and hardware to the eighteen eligible teams.
Some special awards handed out in conjunction with the point fund presentation, including the Behling Racing Equipment B-main Award (Most B-Main wins in 2013 - 3) to Bill Wirth.
Jeremy Schultz was honored as the R&H Enterprises Rookie of the Year, in addition to his finishing a solid 2nd in overall points and picking up a pair of feature wins. Schultz was awarded a $1250 bonus for being Rookie of the Year plus received a complete front-end assembly (from R&H), and a jacket courtesy of Hoosier. Schultz thanked his many supporters in attendance including his father, crew, and engine builder, plus the team of Neitzel whom he mentored with for years prior to starting his driving career. When all said and done, Schultz took home just shy of $6000 in cash awards, plus the front-end, a MSD ignition box, and several other smaller contingencies.
Bill Balog was honored with an unprecedented 6th consecutive Frank Filskov Memorial IRA Championship. Balog took the $10,000 IRA championship check, plus also received the $500 Fast Timer Award courtesy of TW Metals and Osborn & Son Trucking for garnering the most qualifying points throughout the season. Balog led every statistical category enroute to a spectacular seventeen IRA feature win season. The Alaskan transplant thanked his crew, sponsor & friend Ryan Buesser, and of course his family for their support as his wife, young son, and sister (who traveled in from Alaska) were all in attendance. Prior to Bill being seated, Sinclair stepped up and awarded the Mechanix Wear Mechanic of the Year Award to Balog's crew member & engine tuner, Dave Ramthun.
Prior to the popular product drawing, a few additional awards were presented including the Mother's Wax & Polishes Best Appearing Car Award which went to the #7f of Lance Fassbender. Triana's Trophy Case also provided a Best appearing Car Award and that one went to the #12 of Mike Decker. Nick Alden received Most Improved Driver honors.
The Product Prize Drawing concluded the awards portion of the evening with each of the eighteen teams having the opportunity to select a prize package of their choice from the eighteen package options, draw order being determined by the luck of the draw. Wayne Modjeski (8th in points) was selected first to choose, and his package selection included a 2014 Maxim chassis. Twenty-six companies provided actual items for the drawing, and another twenty provided discount certificates to enhance some of the various packages. Special thanks to (in alphabetical order) for participating as a primary provider in the drawing.... ACCU-STOP, AFCO, ALL-PRO, ALL-STAR, AUTO METER, BEHLING, BELL, CRASH PAD, DESIGN 500, DMI, FK, HRP, IMPACT, KARAVAN, MAXIM, MOTHER'S, MSD, M&W, OUTERWEARS, QUARTER MASTER, RACING OPTICS, R&H, SCHOENFELD, ULTRASHIELD, VELOCITY, VIKING, WELD, and WILWOOD. Plus cert providers Buege, Brodix, Competition Specialists, Hilborn, Rhey, Saldana, Simpson, Super Shox, Winters, and others.
High Energy Entertainment provided the music.
Also special thanks to Bon Ton Bakery (Jefferson, WI), Triana's Trophy Case (Watertown, WI). Photographers...Brett Moist (BMT), and Rob Eisentraut (RC). And Jeff Sachse for all his efforts behind the scenes.
The 2014 Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint Series schedule will be released just after the new year.
IRA's eighteen honored teams, listed in driver point standing order were;
1. Bill Balog 2.Jeremy Schultz 3. Scotty Neitzel 4. Phillip Mock 5. Russel Borland 6. Scott Uttech 7. Bill Wirth 8. Wayne Modjeski 9. Kris Spitz
10. Dave Uttech 11. Tommy Sexton 12. Nick Alden 13. Mike Decker 14. Alan Hafford 15. Dennis Spitz 16. Chad Tessman 17. Brandon Thone 18. Lance Fassbender




 

IT’S AWARDS TIME FOR THE BUMPER TO BUMPER IRA OUTLAW SPRINTS

Banquet to put the wraps on a successful 2013 racing season!

McHenry, IL; November 18, 2013 –The Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint Series

Awards Banquet is set for Saturday night November 30th at the Crystal Room in Buffalo Phil's, directly across the parking lot of the Great Wolf Lodge in the popular Wisconsin Dells.

The Great Wolf Lodge is the host hotel and Monday Nov. 18th is the last day to reserve your room at the discounted IRA rate. Call 1-800-559-WOLF and use code 1311IRASPR_001. The deadline to order banquet tickets is Nov 20th, directions are on the IRA website, see http://www.irasprints.com/ for details.

The event is open to fans and we encourage our loyal contingent and all area competitors to join us as we recognize our eighteen eligible teams and distribute the biggest point fund in the upper-midwest. Tickets however must be ordered in advance as there will be not be any available at the door. Cocktails begin at 5pm.

Also, IRA will have their Fall membership meeting this Wednesday night, September 20th, at the traditional Bowlero location, banquet tickets can be purchased at that time. The exciting 2014 schedule is its' final stages and will be released soon.

For more information on the IRA Outlaw Sprints check out the tour website at www.irasprints.com or logging onto the series Facebook page at www.facebook.com/irasprints

The IRA Outlaw Sprint Series is proudly supported by Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts & Service Centers, Hoosier Tire, Osborn & Son Trucking, TW Metals, Onan, Carriage Auto Body, Polaris DEFENSE, and Mother's Polishes and Waxes. The office of the IRA Sprints can be reached at 815-759-9269 or by e-mail at steve@irasprints.com

 

 

Season Finale Follow-up / Refund Information

Beaver Dam, WI; September 29, 2013 - Thanks to all that braved the weather in an attempt to either participate or witness the season finale at the Dodge County Fairgrounds Saturday night September 28th.

We all gave it a valiant shot, but Mother Nature was uncooperative. With 24 IRA cars signed, 15 MSA 360's, 16 Mods, and about a dozen gorgeous Vintage Mods on the grounds we got as far as IRA qualifying, on a well prepared track, before the forecasted rain hit. It was tremendous to the see the support of both teams and fans who came out despite the horrendous forecast. After discussion with the fairgrounds track prep crew, series officials, several fans, and the race teams it was decided that it was simply best to just call it a season versus having everyone scramble for hotel rooms or drive up to 3 hours back and forth for a raindate.

The championships had been decided. We gave out refunds to most everyone last night following the rainout however some tickets or wristbands remain uncollected.

For those who did not get refunded at either the ticket booth or pit gate following the cancellation, you can get refunded yet by following these directions. Please send your ticket stubs and/or wristbands AND a self addressed stamped envelope to.... IRA 706 N. Green St McHenry, IL 60050 by October 15th to receive a full refund. Again we sincerely appreciate the support and are all ready looking forward to next year. On behalf of the Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint Series, the Dodge County Fairgrounds, and the MSA we want to say THANK YOU, and we're all ready looking forward to next year.

 

 

 


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