Sorensen goes the distance for USMTS win at Mississippi Thunder Speedway
By: Jeff Nun
FOUNTAIN CITY, Wis. (May 22)--What seemed like a lifetime was a long and quiet 76 days since the Summit USMTS National Championship fueled by Casey's last circled one of America's racetracks, but racers and fans alike celebrated freedom Friday night at the Mississippi Thunder Speedway.
For many, it was an escape from the pandemic-induced bondage of their home state as competitors from nine other commonwealths ventured to the high-banked 1/3-mile clay oval in Fountain City, Wisconsin, to compete against the Best of the Best in dirt modified racing.
In the end, it was today's youth movement capturing the top five spots with 19-year-old Dustin Sorensen leading the charge en route to his fourth career USMTS triumph.
The second-generation racer from Rochester, Minnesota, drew the Sybesma Graphics Pole Award but his road to a $3,000 payday was anything but a walk in the park.
Sorensen quickly reached the tail of the field, lapping his first victim just nine laps into the 40-lap contest. Heavy traffic was the norm until the race's first and only yellow flag waved on lap 28.
Jacob Bleess rolled off from the outside of the front row and chased Sorensen for the first half of the race but 14th-starting Jake Timm blasted past his fellow Gopher State gasser to take second five laps before the caution.
Both Sorensen and Timm, who was fresh off a late model win about 30 minutes earlier, rode the dangerous high line around the speedway as they maneuvered through back-markers. Timm was able to show his nose on several occasions but Sorensen always had an answer.
With the checkered flag in the air, Sorensen crossed the finish line about three car lengths ahead of Timm, 23, and another 23-year-old pursuer, Bleess.
Meanwhile, Grant Junghans Rookie of the Year contender Calvin Iverson charged to a fourth-place finish after sitting 17th on the starting grid-enough for the 22-year-old to claim the FK Rod Ends Hard Charger Award on a night when six of the top ten finishers started 11th or farther back.
Making just his third USMTS start, and first outside of two events at his home track in Byram, Mississippi, another impressive run was executed by Brooks Strength as he held off USMTS points leader Rodney Sanders for the final spot in the top five.
Lucas Schott, Dereck Ramirez, Alex Williamson and Jason Cummins, who started 21st, rounded out the top ten.
Friday's win left Sorensen just one behind the five USMTS wins recorded by his father, Mike Sorensen. It was the third time in those four wins that he led wire-to-wire in a 40-lapper.
Scheduled for Saturday, restrictions imposed by the State of Minnesota forced the cancellation of the 18th Annual Southern Minnesota Spring Challenge at the Deer Creek Speedway. Instead, the Mississippi Thunder Speedway stepped up and expanded their event into a two-day show on Friday and Saturday.
Action returns Saturday for round 2 of the 11th Annual USMTS Spring Shootout presented by Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Winona with another $3,000-to-win main event on tap.
Saturday's show will add the USRA Stock Cars as they double with the USRA B-Mods for the second Christie Door Company Iron Man Challenge event of the season. Dirt Kings Late Models and USRA Hobby Stocks will also compete with the first green flag at 6:30 p.m.
The Mississippi Thunder Speedway is located 3.0 miles north of Fountain City on SR 35. For more information, call (608) 687-3282 or visit mississippithunder.com.
The Summit USMTS National Championship fueled by Casey's returns to the Park Jefferson Speedway near Jefferson, S.D., on Monday for a $2,500-to-win Memorial Day main event at the 9th Annual USMTS River City Rumble.
Currently, the 2020 schedule for the Summit USMTS National Championship fueled by Casey's is highlighted by 43 nights of racing at 28 unique dirt ovals for the 22nd season of competition for the world's Best of the Best in dirt modified racing.
To connect with the USMTS check out USMTS.com, like us on Facebook, follow on Twitter, check us out on Instagram and subscribe to our YouTube channel. Keep up to speed by joining our email list
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United States Modified Touring Series
Summit USMTS National Championship fueled by Casey's
Mississippi Thunder Speedway, Fountain City, Wis.
11th Annual USMTS Spring Shootout presented by Coca-Cola Bottling of Winona - Night 1 of 2
Friday, May 22, 2020
Showing finishing position, starting position in parentheses, car number, driver, hometown, chassis/engine builder, laps completed and money won. The top 12 in heat race passing points advance to the Casey's "A" Main.
SIMPSON PERFORMANCE PRODUCTS HEAT RACE #1 (8 laps):
1. (5) 94JR John Doelle, Arcadia, Wis.
2. (1) 99 Steve Lavasseur (R), River Falls, Wis.
3. (7) 51 Chris Oertel, Marshfield, Wis.
4. (3) 51 Blake Arndt (R), Brownsdale, Minn.
5. (6) 23 Adam Kates, Tonganoxie, Kan.
6. (8) 65 Jake Miller (R), Somerset, Wis.
7. (2) 96J Jaxon Saathoff (R), Beatrice, Neb.
8. (9) 6 Casey Skyberg (R), Rapid City, S.D.
9. (4) 55 Nathan Hagar (R), Adair, Okla.
10. (10) 55M Nathan McHale (R), Webster, Minn.
FAST SHAFTS HEAT RACE #2 (8 laps):
1. (1) 21 Jacob Bleess, Chatfield, Minn.
2. (2) 62 Hunter Marriott, Brookfield, Mo.
3. (5) 33Z Zack VanderBeek, New Sharon, Iowa
4. (6) 49JR Jake Timm, Winona, Minn.
5. (3) 4R Dereck Ramirez, Woodward, Okla.
6. (8) 23K Erik Kanz (R), Winona, Minn.
7. (9) 71 Jason Cummins, New Richland, Minn.
8. (4) 7J Corey Jones (R), Zimmerman, Minn.
9. (7) 5K Tyler Kaeter (R), St. Cloud, Minn.
10. (10) 65 Tyler Davis (R), Haysville, Kan.
EDELBROCK HEAT RACE #3 (8 laps):
1. (2) 19 Dustin Sorensen, Rochester, Minn.
2. (1) 99 Josh Angst, Winona, Minn.
3. (4) 27X Calvin Iverson (R), Eleva, Wis.
4. (9) 20 Rodney Sanders, Happy, Texas
5. (3) 4A Joel Alberts, Mantorville, Minn.
6. (7) 15W Alex Williamson (R), Rushford, Minn.
7. (6) 6T7 Brian Albrecht, Winona, Minn.
8. (5) 99F Josh Flury (R), Cochrane, Wis.
9. (8) 50III Brandon Davis, Hayfield, Minn.
MSD PERFORMANCE HEAT RACE #4 (8 laps):
1. (1) 69 Lucas Schott, Chatfield, Minn.
2. (3) 12 Jason Hughes, Watts, Okla.
3. (6) 444 Brooks Strength (R), Byram, Miss.
4. (2) 30 Matt Leer, Bruce, Wis.
5. (7) 35 David Baxter (R), Eau Claire, Wis.
6. (8) 14M Brian Mahlstedt (R), Ionia, Iowa
7. (4) 8S Tony Schill, Oakdale, Minn.
8. (5) 23 Darwyn Karau, Kasson, Minn.
9. (9) 9X Randy Jonsgaard (R), Winona, Minn.
REAL RACING WHEELS "B" MAIN #1 (12 laps, top 5 advance):
1. (4) 4R Dereck Ramirez, Woodward, Okla.
2. (3) 35 David Baxter (R), Eau Claire, Wis.
3. (1) 27X Calvin Iverson (R), Eleva, Wis.
4. (2) 51 Blake Arndt (R), Brownsdale, Minn.
5. (7) 71 Jason Cummins, New Richland, Minn.
6. (5) 65 Jake Miller (R), Somerset, Wis.
7. (8) 6T7 Brian Albrecht, Winona, Minn., MBCustoms/Adams.
8. (11) 55 Nathan Hagar (R), Adair, Okla.
9. (13) 55M Nathan McHale (R), Webster, Minn., Hughes/McHale.
10. (9) 6 Casey Skyberg (R), Rapid City, S.D.
11. (6) 14M Brian Mahlstedt (R), Ionia, Iowa, Hughes/LM.
12. (12) 50III Brandon Davis, Hayfield, Minn., Tri-Built/KSE.
13. (10) 99F Josh Flury (R), Cochrane, Wis., Hughes/Crousey.
REAL RACING WHEELS "B" MAIN #2 (12 laps, top 5 advance):
1. (1) 49JR Jake Timm, Winona, Minn.
2. (6) 15W Alex Williamson (R), Rushford, Minn.
3. (2) 30 Matt Leer, Bruce, Wis.
4. (8) 8S Tony Schill, Oakdale, Minn.
5. (3) 23 Adam Kates, Tonganoxie, Kan.
6. (11) 5K Tyler Kaeter (R), St. Cloud, Minn., SSR/Chubb's.
7. (5) 23K Erik Kanz (R), Winona, Minn., MBCustoms/OFI.
8. (4) 4A Joel Alberts, Mantorville, Minn., VanderBuilt/Action.
9. (9) 7J Corey Jones (R), Zimmerman, Minn., VanderBuilt/Tim's.
10. (13) 65 Tyler Davis (R), Haysville, Kan.
11. (7) 96J Jaxon Saathoff (R), Beatrice, Neb., Jet/ChevPerf.
12. (10) 23 Darwyn Karau, Kasson, Minn., Killer/Flyin'J.
13. (12) 9X Randy Jonsgaard (R), Winona, Minn.,/.
CASEY'S "A" MAIN (40 laps):
1. (1) 19 Dustin Sorensen, Rochester, Minn., MBCustoms/Action, 40.
2. (14) 49JR Jake Timm, Winona, Minn., MBCustoms/OFI, 40.
3. (2) 21 Jacob Bleess, Chatfield, Minn., VanderBuilt/KSE, 40.
4. (17) 27X Calvin Iverson (R), Eleva, Wis., MBCustoms/Tim's, 40.
5. (7) 444 Brooks Strength (R), Byram, Miss., MBCustoms/Stoen, 40.
6. (11) 20 Rodney Sanders, Happy, Texas, MBCustoms/Hatfield, 40.
7. (6) 69 Lucas Schott, Chatfield, Minn., MBCustoms/Stoen, 40.
8. (13) 4R Dereck Ramirez, Woodward, Okla., Hughes/Cornett, 40.
9. (16) 15W Alex Williamson (R), Rushford, Minn., SSR/KSE, 40.
10. (21) 71 Jason Cummins, New Richland, Minn., Rocket/Baier's, 40.
11. (9) 62 Hunter Marriott, Brookfield, Mo., Rage/KSE, 40.
12. (12) 33Z Zack VanderBeek, New Sharon, Iowa, VanderBuilt/Stoen, 40.
13. (10) 99 Josh Angst, Winona, Minn., MBCustoms/Stoen, 40.
14. (5) 51 Chris Oertel, Marshfield, Wis., MBCustoms/KSE, 40.
15. (3) 99 Steve Lavasseur (R), River Falls, Wis., SSR/Northside, 40.
16. (18) 30 Matt Leer, Bruce, Wis., MBCustoms/Stoen, 40.
17. (25) 6 Casey Skyberg (R), Rapid City, S.D., Lethal/Mullins, 40.
18. (4) 12 Jason Hughes, Watts, Okla., Hughes/Mullins, 40.
19. (15) 35 David Baxter (R), Eau Claire, Wis., Rocket/Baxter, 40.
20. (19) 51 Blake Arndt (R), Brownsdale, Minn., Shaw/KSE, 40.
21. (23) 65 Tyler Davis (R), Haysville, Kan., Hughes/Mullins, 40.
22. (8) 94JR John Doelle, Arcadia, Wis., Rocket/Stoen, 19.
23. (20) 8S Tony Schill, Oakdale, Minn., SSR/KSE, 16.
24. (22) 23 Adam Kates, Tonganoxie, Kan., Jet/Speedway, 15.
25. (24) 65 Jake Miller (R), Somerset, Wis., SSR/Millar, 12.
26. (26) 55 Nathan Hagar (R), Adair, Okla., GRT/ChevPerf, 10.
(R) = Grant Junghans USMTS Rookie of the Year contender
Lap Leader: Sorensen 1-40.
Total Laps Led: Sorensen 40.
Margin of Victory: 0.434 second.
Time of Race: 14 minutes, 23.580 seconds (1 caution).
Provisional Starters: T. Davis, Miller, Skyberg, Hagar.
Eibach Spring Forward Award: Cummins (advanced 15 positions).
FK Rod Ends Hard Charger: Iverson (started 17th, finished 4th).
Next Race: Saturday, May 23, Mississippi Thunder Speedway, Fountain City, Wis.
Summit USMTS National Championship fueled by Casey's Points: Sanders 524, Ramirez 510, Hughes 495, Marriott 485, Davis 451, Iverson 451, VanderBeek 395, Skyberg 391, Houston 380, Bleess 338.
Grant Junghans USMTS Rookie of the Year Points: Davis 451, Iverson 451, Skyberg 391, Hagar 331, Bailey 255.
Jobbers Warehouse Supply USMTS Manufacturers Championship Points: MBCustoms 55, Hughes 52, Rage 47, Lethal 30, VanderBuilt 30.
Compstar/JE Pistons USMTS Engine Builder of the Year Points: Mullins 42, Hatfield 40, KSE 39, Cornett 38, Stoen 35.
American Racer - Schill.
Beyea Custom Headers - Iverson.
BigDeal Car Care - Strength, Sorensen.
Bryke Racing - Lavasseur.
BSB Manufacturing - T. Davis.
Champ Pans - Strength.
Deatherage Opticians - VanderBeek.
Edelbrock - Sorensen.
Eibach - Cummins.
Fast Shafts - Bleess.
FK Rod Ends - Iverson.
Forty9 Designs - Oertel, Baxter.
Hooker Harness - VanderBeek.
Integra Racing Shocks & Springs - Hughes.
Jerovetz Motorsports Racing Parts - Skyberg.
K1 RaceGear by Ryan Bowers Motorsports - Kaeter.
Keyser Manufacturing - Cummins.
KSE Racing Products - Williamson.
Maxima Racing Oils - Bleess.
Mesilla Valley Transportation - Sanders.
Penske Racing Shocks - Angst.
PEM Racing Gears & Drivetrain - Hagar.
QA1 - Schott.
RacerWebsite.com - T. Davis.
Simpson Performance Products - Doelle.
Spyder High Performance Filters - Sanders.
Summit Racing Equipment - Bleess, Hagar, Kates.
Super Clean - Sorensen.
Swift Springs - Sorensen, Williamson.
Sybesma Graphics - Sorensen.
Tire Demon - Flury.
VP Racing Fuels - Sorensen.
Wehrs Machine & Racing Products - Karau.
Wilwood Disc Brakes - Schott.
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USMTS OFFICIAL SPONSORS: American Racer Racing Tires, Casey's, Chevrolet Performance, Compstar Performance Engine Components by Callies, CP-Carrillo, Dirt Draft, Eibach, Fast Shafts, FK Rod Ends, Intercomp, Jerovetz Motorsports Racing Parts, K1 RaceGear by Ryan Bowers Motorsports, KS Engineering, KSE Racing Products, Malvern Bank, Mesilla Valley Transportation, MSD Performance, MTN DEW Zero Sugar, MyRacePass, Nitroquest Media, PEM Racing Gears & Drivetrain, RacinDirt.com, Snickers, Summit Racing Equipment, Super Clean, VP Racing Fuels, Wrisco Industries.
USMTS PARTICIPATING SPONSORS: Boubin Tire & Automotive, Brodix Cylinder Heads, Duvall Electric, Eagle Moon Farm, JE Pistons, Miller Welders, PBM Performance Products, Rancho Milagro Racing, Rivers Edge Scrap Management, Tony Moro Powder Coat, Top of the World Ranch, YouDirt.com.
USMTS CONTINGENCY SPONSORS: AFCO Racing Products, Allstar Performance, Beyea Headers, BigDeal Car Care, Brown & Miller Racing Solutions, Bryke Racing, BSB Manufacturing, Champ Pans, Deatherage Opticians, Edelbrock, Forty9 Designs, Genesis Racing Shocks, Hooker Harness, Integra Racing Shocks and Springs, Keyser Manufacturing, Maxima Racing Oils, Penske Racing Shocks, QA1, RacerWebsite.com, Real Racing Wheels, Simpson Performance Products, Swift Springs, Sybesma Graphics, Tire Demon, Wehrs Machine & Race Products, Wilwood Racing.