Friday night was the Inaugural “Showdown at MoTown” with 109 cars filling the pits for the after season special event. They came from all parts of Iowa as well as Illinois, Missouri, Nebraska, Kansas, Arizona, Oregon, Texas, California and Canada. By night’s end however, it was area racers that claimed the wins in all five divisions on the High Banks.
It was Austin Luellen taking home the win in the 20-lap IMCA Northern SportMod feature event. Luellen started eighth and had to run down front runners Shawn Cooney, Jared VanDeest and Curtis Van Der Wal. He passed leader Shawn Cooney with just two laps remaining to take command of the race, holding it to the flying checkers and the win. Cooney claimed the runner up spot, Van Der Wal was third, fourth went to tenth place starter, Clint Luellen, and Pella, Iowa driver Matt Van Gelder was fifth. Austin Luellen also won the final race of the regular season at Marshalltown Speedway.
Eric Stanton continued his dominating year in the IMCA Hobby Stock class, grabbing another win in the 18-lap A feature. By luck of the redraw, Stanton started on the pole, and led all laps on his way to victory. The win marked the twelfth time this year he had stepped into Victory Lane at the Speedway. Jamie Schirm, Dexter, Iowa racer, had a fine showing as he raced from eighth starting spot, to finish second. Third was Tyson Overton, Damon Richards from David City, Nebraska was fourth and Mason City’s Weston Koop completed the top five.
The 20-lap IMCA Stock Car feature went to Trent Murphy, another driver who raced at the Marshalltown Speedway during the season. Murphy led all 20-laps on his way to the winner’s circle. A hard charging Damon Murty started eleventh and pressured Murphy in the final handful of laps, but had to be content with a second place finish. Third went to Todd Reitzler, Steve Meyer was fourth and Kyle Everts rounded out the top five. Murphy also visited Victory Lane twice during the regular season.
Seven IMCA Late Models took to the track for their 15-lap feature. Todd Cooney got the upper hand immediately, leading at lap one from his fifth starting position. Sean Johnson started seventh and by lap eight, made the move under Cooney to gain the lead. Cooney, who was running hard in an attempt to gain back the lead, slid off of turn two two laps later, bringing out the caution, and putting him to the tail for the restart. Johnson pulled away on the restart of the race and took the comfortable win. Cooney made up ground after his incident, and finished in second. Third was Darrin Ackerman who just held off fourth place finisher, Ryan Griffith, and Doug McCollough was fifth.
The night’s finale was the 25-lap IMCA Modified feature. With 35 cars in attendance, it took two B-mains to complete the 24-car starting field. Jimmy Gustin was the lucky recipient of the pole for the start of the race and he immediately flew to the lead. Tim Ward tucked in behind him to run second and Jenae Gustin tagged into third. The three cars remained in that order when Corning, Iowa’s Jesse Dennis took a tumble off of corner one, halting the racing action. Dennis was okay but his night was done. When the action picked back up, Gustin kept hold of the lead with Ward pestering him, but it was to no avail as Gustin took the double checkers and the win. Ward had to settle for the runner up spot. Third place went to Medford, Oregon’s Tom Berry. Berry started twenty-fourth, set his car on the topside, and ran out of laps to garner more than third. Fourth place was Jenae Gustin and Scott Simatovich was fifth. Ironically, this was Jimmy Gustin’s first win at Marshalltown in 2016.
The next racing action at the Marshalltown Speedway will be September 15-17 for the 10th Annual World Nationals. Check www.marshalltownspeedway.com for details.