Stroebel Memorial Streak Snapped Sundayadmin
With the track still warm from Saturday night’s racing the Intermountain Outlaw Modifieds, CT400 Winged Sprintcars, and Tates Rent’s Hornets rolled onto Meridian Speedway for the Allen Stroebel Memorial and Oldies Cruise Night.
The CT400 Winged Sprintcars flew through a 20 lap main event. Chris Ratterree hit the gas in his Banner Promotions, YMC Inc. sprinter and outmuscled new class record holder Casey Tillman on lap one and shot to the lead. Tillman wrestled his Westside Body Works, RATT Graphics, sprinter to keep pace with Ratterree. Tillman’s sprinter finally came around with eight laps left and the young Kuna, Idaho driver closed to within feet of the leader’s tail tank. With his right rear tire smoking Tillman pushed to keep pace, but instead fell into the clutches of Colton Nelson. Nelson ran out of time to pilot his Blimpie of Meridian, LFC Cleaning sprinter around Tillman and had to settle for third behind Tillman and winner Ratterree.
“I just have to thank my guys,” Ratterree said as he collected his Jacksonbuilt Racing trophy.
The Intermountain Outlaw Modifieds roared onto the quarter-mile with 21 fast competitors set to settle the 65 lap Allen Stroebel Memorial race. When the green flag fell Josh Jackson muscled Tony Pulley up the track to take the lead on lap one. Jackson had only three laps to enjoy the lead before quick Rick Fowble moved his Stanley Associates, Inc., Rosenau Funeral Homes machine to the high groove and raced to the lead. Back in the pack Dennis Wurtz II and Shelby Stroebel ran afoul of traffic in their quest to move forward.
With so many modifieds on the track Fowble was in traffic as soon as he took the lead. As Fowble picked off the back markers Wes Miller pulled to his back bumper. Miller threatened until a caution slowed the field and allowed Miller to restart in his preferred high groove. This opportunity wasn’t wasted as Miller motored to the lead on lap nineteen.
After 25 laps Shelby Stroebel sat fourth in his Loan Mart, Trinity Construction machine as he looked to extend his steak of Allen Stroebel Memorial race victories. Five laps later he flung his racer to the outside of Kyle Latham and took third. Next on Stroebel’s list was second place Fowble. On lap 38 Stroebel relieved Fowble of second and started his march toward the top spot on the Pepsi-Cola scoreboard.
As Stroebel grew larger in his mirror leader Miller furiously picked his way through a pack of eight lapped cars. Once Miller broke out of traffic he showed what his modified was capable of, which was a string of laps two-tenths of a second faster than anyone else on the speedway. This speed was both a blessing and a curse as Miller again caught a gaggle of lapped cars.
With fifteen laps left two cars stood between Stroebel and Miller. With time running out Stroebel tried to force his way beneath Abe Carter to make up time. The two racers came together and spun into the turn one wall. With nowhere to go the pack jumped on the brakes and when the smoke cleared third place runner Dennis Wurtz II and four others found themselves in the pile up.
Carter accepted responsibility for the incident and allowed Stroebel to keep his runner up spot for the restart with sixteen laps to go. The damage to Stroebel’s racer was evident immediately as the driver’s side door and part of Stroebel’s roof peeled away when he took the green flag. As sheet metal rained down on the track the yellow came back out and Stroebel went to the pits for repairs. Stroebel restarted last in his new convertible with fourteen cars to pass and six laps to make it happen.
Stroebel wheeled his racer hard around the quarter-mile, but could only make his way to fifth behind daughter Caitlin Stroebel, Latham, Fowble, and winner Miller. With his win Miller joins Shelby Stroebel as the only racers to collect the Allen Stroebel Memorial trophy since the event’s inception in 2011.
“It’s too bad to see that happen to Shelby,” Miller said in Arctic Circle of Meridian Victory Lane. “If it wasn’t for him and his guys we wouldn’t be here today.”
The Tates Rents Hornets closed Meridian Speedway’s Labor Day festivities with a 35 lap shootout. As the green flag waved Adam Deane jumped to the lead while Ron Compton knifed his way from fourth to Dean’s outside on lap one. By lap three Compton held the top spot in his PBT Auto Sales car, but surrendered the point to Cody Garrett one lap later.
On the move early was DJ Everett, who turned the wick up on his Dot’s Bingo Snacks, Discount Tire machine and charged from the back of the pack third place after just eight laps. After eleven circuits Everett held second and closed on Garrett as the pair worked into lapped traffic.
With eighteen laps to go Everett made his move on the low side, but was boxed in by lapped traffic. Once Everett cleared the back markers he had fifteen laps to make up a two-second deficit and pass the aggressive Garrett.
With just nine laps left Everett caught Garrett and looked to make his way to the lead in the low line. A surprise dive in turn three caught Garrett off guard and allowed Everett to take the top spot. Try as Garrett might the young driver couldn’t track down Everett who collected the Jacksonbuilt Racing trophy.
“That was a pretty brutal race there,” Everett said. “Every time I got to his bumper lapped traffic played a role.”
Next Saturday Meridian Speedway celebrates Tates Rents Fan Night presented by Birds of Prey Motorsports. The Pepsi Sprintcars and Idaho Sprintcar Racing League, Claimer Stocks, Kendal Ford of Meridian Mini Stocks, College of Western Idaho High School Tuners, and Westcoast Vintage Racers are set to battle for the Hunziker 98 Racing trophies. General Admission for Saturday’s racing action is just $10.25 for adults, $6.25 for kids 7 to 11. Be sure to check meridianspeedway.com for more information and text ‘meridianspeed’ to 84483 for exclusive updates. We’ll see you Saturday under the big yellow water tower at Meridian Speedway.