STIMS @ I-37 Speedway by All in Designs, 6/15/24

STIMS @ I-37 Speedway by All in Designs, 6/15/24
STIMS @ I-37 Speedway by All in Designs, 6/15/24
STIMS @ I-37 Speedway by All in Designs, 6/15/24
STIMS @ I-37 Speedway by All in Designs, 6/15/24
STIMS @ I-37 Speedway by All in Designs, 6/15/24
STIMS @ I-37 Speedway by All in Designs, 6/15/24

STIMS winner Cody Leonard
Limited Modified winner Johnny Torres
Factory Stock winner Kyle Kirkland
Fireball winner Howie Marcx
Sport Compact winner Josh Jones

By JM Hallas
Pleasanton, TX.,(June 15th, 2024) Happy Fathers Day

The South Texas IMCA Modifieds Series(STIMS) returned to I-37 Speedway Saturday to do battle on the ¼ mile, semi-banked, dirt oval. This marked the series' fourth trip to the track this year with another full field of the alcohol burning IMCA Modifieds.

The first two shows saw Chris Morris take home the wins both at the expense of Ryan Doyon. One, after Doyon ran out of fuel under a caution and the other by a late race pass. The last STIMS show had second generation racer, Logan Dinsmore pretty much dominate until a late caution put Morris and Jared Maupin on his tail. Dinsmore was able to inch away the finals laps for the victory, his second in a row.

To say the STIMS points are tight would be an understatement. Currently Rick Green and Ryan Doyon are tied on top. Trailing them are Chris Carroll(-4), Jacob Hortsch(-12) and Shawn Sandergren(-18) in the top five. Despite having three series win, Dinsmore sits ninth in points after missing two events.

Also taking the track would be the regular classes on Limited Modifieds, Factory Stocks, Fireballs and Sport Compacts.

Leonard Lands Knockout Punch in STIMS Scrap
As the 20-lap STIMS main event roared to life co-points leader, Chris Morris grabbed the point pursued by Cody Leonard, Chris Carroll, Brian Harbison and Logan Dinsmore. Leonard began looking low on Morris getting along side on lap 2, taking over the top spot on lap 3.

Carroll slipped high allowing Harbison to take a look low. Harbison was unable to get by Carroll and lost a spot to Dinsmore in the process. Gilbert Amezquita spun off turn 2 for a lap 6 caution. Leonard jumped out on the restart with Dinsmore looking inside Carroll for third. A spin by Joey Whitehead would slow the pace again on lap 8. The ensuing restart got ugly fast as the pack stacked up on the front stretch collecting a handful of cars. Several were unable to continue, and there were no injuries.

Back to green, Leonard and Morris got away with Dinsmore and Ryan Doyon side by side for third. Dinsmore held the spot and tracked down Morris coming to the crossed flags showing Leonard, Morris, Dinsmore, Doyon and Carroll in the top five. Dinsmore then began a scrap with Morris for second. As they battled, Leonard checked out.

Doyon joined the second place battle between Dinsmore and Morris with Dinsmore finally getting the spot, but Leonard was gone. The only thing to slow Leonard was traffic the final couple laps while Doyon and Morris raced for third. Leonard(Sinton) in the Ace Transmission, Swenson Racing Shocks & Components, Speed Secrets, CCT, Lincoln Heritage, Pittaway Ranch, crate powered 2018 Shaw Chassis easily took the checkers.

“I'll be honest,” said Leonard. “I did not feel good in the heat race. I really didn't feel too good at the start of the feature even though we went forward. This place was kind of low and slow which fits my driving style. We went back to some stuff we were doing in 2020 when we were really good, really quick. It's sort of a hybrid now that we got the car redone. Going back to some old things helped us pick the speed back up.”

“The entire field is all good drivers in good equipment. You know in the back of your head you picture someone behind you and have to stay on your toes. Chris Morris jumped out front early and he was pretty good in his heat race. When I got past him I was just holding my line and running my race. On the restarts you can hear on the raceciever who's behind you. I kept hearing Chris was there. You just try to hit your line, hit your marks, do what you can. You never know how many car lengths you have behind you. Any of these guys can win, any day of the week.”

“This car is my baby. We had redone a couple years ago and we've been trying to get the feeling back in it we had to where I like it. I think we're finally headed back in that direction. Me, personally, I love a black, slick race track. It just fits my driving style. I think it brings a little more patience, a little more driver into it.”

“I do actually remember my first win. It was here, in 2015 I think, in Bill Pittaway's Sport Modified. I think it was my fifth race in the car. It was kind of a flashback. They say the first one is hardest and after that they get a little easier.” added Leonard after seeing two other drivers take their first ever wins over the night.

STIMS by Hortch Speed Shop
12 Cody Leonard, 8jr Logan Dinsmore, 5r Ryan Doyon, 94 Chris Morris, 15 Chris Carroll, 11x Brian Harbison, 26 Cody Duke, 77 Robert Liese jr., 73d Jacob Hortch, m17 Joey Whitehead, 82 Rick Green, 27s Charles Strong, 141 Rob Sanderson, 56 Gilbert Amezquita, 49 Ryan Slott, 18s Shawn Sandegren, 366 David Gibson, 22z Darrell Boyd, 5b Brenda Kirby, 8g Greg Dinsmore---dns

STIMS heats
Heat 1; 94 Chris Morris, 5r Ryan Doyon, 12 Cody Leonard, 11x Brian Harbison, 82 Rick Green, m17 Joey Whitehead, 366 David Gibson

Heat 2; 15 Chris Carroll, 8jr Logan Dinsmore, 5b Brenda Kirby, 77 Robert Liese jr., 26 Cody Duke, 56 Gilbert Amezquita---dns

Heat 3; 49 Ryan Slott, 27s Charles Strong, 18s Shawn Sandegren, 8g Greg Dinsmore, 73d Jacob Hortch,141 Rob Sanderson, 22z Darrell Boyd---dns

Torres Takes Another
Logan Dinsmore grabbed the early lead of the 20-lap Limited Modified feature but Clint Everage spun and collected Steven Whiteaker III, Greg Atwood, Allen Torres and Mike Terry. On the restart Johnny Torres got past Robert Wiggins and Whiteaker for second, but Charles Flanagan would loop it for another quick yellow.

Back under green, J. Torres was pressuring Dinsmore for the lead taking to position on lap 4. Dinsmore tried a crossover move but J. Torres held him off. Trent Beaver got by Wiggins for fourth with Jared Maupin following to fifth. By halfway J. Torres had built a big lead over Dinsmore, Whiteaker, Beaver and Maupin.

The last half of the race flashed by quickly and cautionless as J. Torres continued to increase his margin to a full straightaway. This left J. Torres(San Antonio) to go unchallenged to win in the 8T1 Construction, One-Eight Transportation, All in Designs, Best Race Engines, IRP Chassis. Not bad for a guy that was supposed to race in Louisiana over the weekend.

“This is the same car that Brian(Harbison) had, just a different number,” explained Torres who was planning to run a show at Boothill Speedway. “We bought it from him because he wanted to go Modified racing. So now I'm Sport Modified racing and Factory Stock when it's convenient. This car was tuned up for Boothill. Between work and finding help, I decided to wait and go out of town next weekend.”

“Here and Boothill are pretty much the same set up wise. All I was going to do is change tires because they run American Racers. I didn't do anything but the tires. So it was pretty much ready for here tonight. The car felt good. That's my style of track. Slick, slow around the bottom. It was pretty nice.”

Limited Modifieds by Iron Horse RV Specialists
66 Johnny Torres, 30k Logan Dinsmore, 88 Steven Whiteaker III, 14 Trent beaver, 91 Jared Maupin, 26w Robert Wiggins, 58 Charles Flanagan, 10d Clint Everage, 15t Mike Terry, 23 Greg Atwood, 11t/51 Allen Torres, 51/11t Tom Grothues---dns

Limited Modified heats
Heat 1; 91 Jared Maupin, 30k Logan Dinsmore, 10d Clint Everage, 58 Charles Flanagan, 15t Mike Terry, 23 Greg Atwood

Heat 2; 66 Johnny Torres, 11t Tom Grothues, 26w Robert Wiggins, 51 Allen Torres, 166 Sherrill Lewis, 14 Trent Beaver

Kirkland Klaims First Checkers
As the 20-lap Factory Stock feature took the green it was Kyle Kirkland leading into turn 1, but Jared Maupin got a run off turn 4 to lead lap 1. Albert Medellin lost some fluid on the track bringing out an early caution. Maupin got away as green waved again with Cameron Dinsmore getting by Robert Keylich for fifth followed by Dustin Hurley to sixth.

Jarrett Payton moved in to challenge Kirkland for second as Maupin motored away. Kirkland would slip on lap 6 giving up spots to Payton and Mike Lyon. Hunter Peterson saw his new car catch fire under the hood bringing out an immediate red flag. Safety crews got the fire out quickly as Peterson exited the car. Dinsmore was unable to refire giving up fourth.

Maupin got a big jump on green leaving Payton, Kirkland and Lyon three wide for second. Kirkland got position bringing Hurley along to third while Lyon and Michael Keylich were door to door for fifth. M. Keylich would shed some cars parts on the track for a lap 9 caution.

Maupin again got away back under green coming to halfway ahead of Kirkland, Hurley, Payton and M. Keylich. Maupin's chance to win went up in smoke on lap 11 ending his night and he got stuck in the exit chute. This put Kirkland back on point for the restart that saw the race get cut by officials on time limit to a green, white, checker finish.

Back to green Kirkland had Hurley get to his bumper in turn 3 and a sniff at the lead off turn 4 when Kirkland got a little loose. The two made slight contact, but Kirkland held the spot as the white waved. Hurley made a last charge on the final lap, but it was Kirkland(Ingram) in the Kirkland Construction, Sundowner Performance Diesel, Davids Racing Products, Good Ol Days Garage, Williams Remodeling, Monroe Plumbing, Xpress Painting, Rileys Automotive, Swenson Racing Shocks, Lowrey Plumbing, Marks Toy Shop, Eveready Electric, WCR Powered, Punisher Chassis holding on for his first ever Factory Stock win in four years.

**** Kudos to Hurley who, in a show of sportsmanship, could have roughed up Kirkland for the lead, but didn't, as they came to the white flag. We need more drivers to show the same respect.---JMO

“Seems to be the night for first time winners,” said Kirkland. “On Fathers Day night too. I saw Jared blow up, and I saw smoke and thought, 'just don't hit him.' I went low as he tried to get off the track.”

“Once you're out in the lead you just have to have confidence in yourself and the car. Just remember everything you've learned throughout your racing. Stay on the bottom!”

“I was worried on the last restart. I thought I had a little faster car if I could just keep my nose in front of him. When I heard, green, white, checker, it was on. I was glad it was only two laps, not eight. I think I knocked the toe out on an infield tire. There's no telling what might have happened with eight laps.”

Factory Stocks by All in Designs
18 Kyle Kirkland, 4d Dustin Hurley, 44x Brandon Welker, 44k Michael Keylich, 41 Kurtis Opiela, 20 Mike Lyon, 92r Robert Keylich, 91 Jared Maupin, 18s Jarrett Payton, 8c Cameron Dinsmore, 34h Hunter Peterson, 538 Albert Medellin

Factory Stock heats
Heat 1; 18s Jarrett Payton, 4d Dustin Hurley, 538 Albert Meddellin, 44k Michael Keylich, 92r Robert Keylich, 34h Hunter Peterson

Heat 2; 91 Jared Maupin, 8c Cameron Dinsmore, 18 Kyle Kirkland, 20 Mike Lyon, 44x Brandon Welker, 41 Kurtis Opiela

Marcx on the Mark Again
Evahdent Ivy and Ryker Hernandez stayed door to door at the start of the 15-lap Fireball feature with Ivy getting the spot on lap 1 trailed by Hernandez, Howie Marcx, Treyler Caulfield and Trevor Smith. Hernandez would loop it in turn 4 for a lap 1 caution. Ivy got a jump on green but Marcx reeled her in and took the lead on lap 4.

After a Scott Walker spin, Marcx got away from Ivy and Caulfield side by side for second with Sammy Smith and Hernandez battling for fourth. At halfway it was Marcx, Ivy, Caulfield, Hernandez and S. Smith in the top five. Marcx(Somerset) continued to ease away to a full straightaway margin taking his third win of the season in his RST, Double K Landscaping, Rockin B Villa Ranch, Supreme Foundations, Somerset Animal Clinic, JGR, Constantinos Pizza, Nogalitos Gear, Donna Kay & Sonny Kinnaman, Paradise Paint, Howies Lawn Service, Sheppards Machine Shop powered 20 year old home built Camaro.

“So far we've got this dialed in with three feature wins,” commented Marcx. “It takes the car, the driver and the track working together, and a lot of work. We've rebuilt the front a couple times, so I re-inforced the front bumper this time. She's all in one piece tonight to go and win again.”

“The track was pretty slick tonight from the middle, up. I kind of had a plan going out for the feature. Once I got into the lead I just held the bottom and hugged the tires. If anyone was going to try to go around, they'd have to be up in the slick. It was just kind of driving miss daisy home.”

“I'm ok with a bottom dominant track. It's not what I prefer to run. I think the higher groove can be faster if its got got some grip up there. I wasn't too worried about anyone trying up and didn't hear anyone. I'd glance over in the corners and my guys said I had a full turn lead.

Fireballs by Winners Circle Transmissions
13 Howie Marcx, 4 Treyler Caulfield, 55 Ryker Hernandez, 86 Sammy Smith, 15 Trevor Smith, 05 Evahdent Ivy---dq(weight), 17 Scott Walker---dq(tech), 6m Blaine Markgraf---dns

Fireball heat
Heat 1; 13 Howie Marcx, 05 Evahdent Ivy, 55 Ryker Hernandez, 6m Blaine Markgraf, 86 Sammy Smith, 17 Scott Walker, 15 Trevor Smith, 4 Treyler Caulfield

Jones Joins First Timers Club
Fons Ponsioen got away quickly at the start of the Sport Compact feature chased by Justin Sitterle, Rod Tait, Joshua Garcia and James Baum. Tait got second early while Josh Jones cracked the top five. Chris Tippery had tire issues on lap 2 to bring out a caution. The restart saw Sitterle take second back with Jones making a run to third.

Jones wasted little time going by Sitterle and got along side Ponsioen for the lead taking the top spot. Behind them Baum and Tait were battling for fourth until Tait made contact with Baum in turn 1 sending him around in turn 1 for a lap 6 yellow. Jones got away on green from Sitterle, Ponsioen, Baum and Eric Wilson on the restart with Wilson picking off Baum for fourth.

Coming to halfway Sitterle and Ponsioen made contact sending Ponsioen hard into the front stretch wall for a red flag. Ponsioen was checked out by the safety crew. Back to racing, the top four pulled away until Baum and Tait tangled again, this time sending Baum to the tail. On the restart Wilson took a look high on Jones in turns 1-2, with Tait looking on the low side.

Jones held them both both off and by lap 15 had pulled out to about a seven car length advantage. Jones(San Antonio) was able to hold that margin and carry it to his first ever checkered flag in his M&M Auto, Johnson Transport, Triple D Ranch, Keeping Up Racing Team, D.A.M.M. Good Track Service, Talberts Shop, TLC Graphics, SBR Performance, KP Honda, Sweet Texas Creations, 2.2L Chevy Cavalier

“Finally!” exclaimed Jones. “It's been a long time coming. We've been busting our butts doing little tweaks to the car. We finally got it right. It's an awesome feeling finally after five years. I started off in a Toyota Corolla but it wasn't fast enough. Then found a Cavalier with an automatic, but I wanted to go faster. Jeremy Hernandez and his boys had a push rod motor, but they like the Eco-Techs.”

“Being out front plays a lot of tricks on your mind. Our cars aren't real loud so you can't really hear them. It's hard to tell where someone is at. I started peeking over, looking at the shadows just to see if someone was close to me. I heard Eric Wilson come up on me and Rod(Tait) is another fast car. I just grabbed the bottom line, protected it and prayed to the racing gods.”

“I prefer a heavier track. But hey, I think I might be liking this dry slick a bit more now. We know the set up for it now, so we'll put this in our notes. Keep on pushing and hopefully get some more wins.”

“Those cautions freak you out. You never know if they'll try to get under you,,go around the top. You're out there a sitting duck. All you can do is try to get a good start and break away from them. I changed up my start point and I think that helped me get enough gap to win.”

Can't thank my wife and kids enough. They're out there sweating, helping me and cleaning the car. Jerry and Tammie Jones, Zack Taylor, Kenny Page for all their help.”

Sport Compacts by Johnson Supply
11j Josh Jones, 18 Eric Wilson, 70 Rod Tait, 32 Joshua Garcia, 33k Kayla Pouncey, 007 James Baum, 88 Justin Sitterle, 22 Fons Ponsioen, 76y Donald Lewis, 38 Sonny Kinnaman, 5 Chris Tippery, 825 Justin Van Winkle---dns

Sport Compact heats
Heat 1; 11j Josh Jones, 22 Fons Ponsieon, 007 James Baum, 76y Donald Lewis, 32 Joshua Garcia, 825 Justin Van Winkle

Heat 2; 70 Rod Tait, 88 Justin Sitterle, 18 Eric Wilson, 5 Chris Tippery, 33k Kayla Pouncey, 38 Sonny Kinnaman

Latest Results

I-37 Speedway6/15/2024Fireballs by Winners Circle Racing Transmissions
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