WAUSAU, Wis. (July 23) – Getting better almost every single week in his rookie season, Stratford’s Hunter Landwehr made a breakthrough at State Park Speedway Friday night.
Landwehr edged ahead of Gleason’s Ashley Schoone in the final laps and won the 25-lap Rockstar Energy Drink Mini Stocks feature Friday. Landwehr earned his first-ever feature win at State Park on the first of two nights of the 41st annual Larry Detjens Memorial.
Landwehr chased Schoone most of the final 10 laps and was side-by-side with her for the final five laps, heading a fierce pack of cars that included four-time 2021 feature winner Eric Breitenfeldt, Garret Strachota and Kyle Check.
Landwehr drove to the outside of Schoone on lap 21 and slowly gained ground while Schoone had to fight off Breitenfeldt taking a look to the inside of the leader. Landwehr held a slim lead at the start-finish line on laps 23 and 24, and on the final lap cleared Schoone and went on to win just over a week after recording his first top-five feature finish at State Park.
“Me and Ashley battled for quite a while. The high side never worked for me here (before),” said Landwehr, who also credited former mini stocks champion and current mini mods driver Kole Ferge with helping him improve at the track.
Strachota also benefitted from the final lap shuffling, and he was able to grab second from Schoone coming to the final checkers. Breitenfeldt finished fourth and Check was fifth
Wausau’s George Seliger kept going an impressive string of excellence in the Snap-on Mini Mods, winning his fifth straight feature in the class. Seliger took advantage of a big break early in the race and then held off Greg Blount of Marathon in the closing laps to join Breitenfeldt as the first drivers with five feature wins at SPS this season.
Seliger started 12th in a full field of 14 cars but moved up to third just one lap later, after an incident on the frontstretch after one lap when polesitter Brian Marquardt got loose and the chain reaction resulted in Chad Ferge bouncing off of Joe Kuehn and briefly getting airborne. Leader Evan Call and four of the top five cars all surprisingly chose the outside lane, allowing Kole Ferge the inside of the front row and Seliger to move up to the inside of the second row.
Seliger quickly moved to second on the Lap 2 restart when Call slipped up high, and he needed just three more laps to drive to the outside of Kole Ferge to take the lead. From there he took off, though he received a challenge late from lapped traffic and from Blount, the two-time defending class champion making his first appearance of the season. Blount got as close as two car lengths with four laps left while Seliger navigated lapped cars, but got no closer.
Alex Hartwig of Portage also continued to dominate the E.H. Wolf & Sons Bandolero class, winning the 15-lap feature for his seventh straight feature win at State Park dating back to the beginning of last season.
Hartwig patiently worked through the field and took the lead when Cohen Henze of Juda slipped high out of turn four on Lap 12. He would drive away in the final laps to win with Henze second and Anna Malouf of Rhinelander third after leading seven laps early.
In addition to the feature races, Clayton Phillips of Marathon also was a double-winner in the mini stocks, coming from the back to take the first heat and the 15-lap semi-feature. Phillips missed out on qualifying but came through the field in both races, including overtaking Luke Mikula of Wausau for the lead on lap 8 on the way to winning the semi. He also came back to finish ninth of 14 cars in the mini stocks feature.
The Larry Detjens Memorial continues Saturday with the second day of racing, highlighted by the ARCA Midwest Tour super late models contesting a 125-lap feature. Pure stocks, mini mods, mini stocks and Bandoleros also all make up a full program that will begin with Fred Mueller Qualifying at 4:30 p.m. and racing to follow at 6 p.m.
Snap-on Mini Mods
Fast Qualifier: Chad Ferge, Weston, 15.689 sec.
First Heat: 1. Evan Call, Elderon; 2. John Lietz, Mosinee; 3. Mike Heidmann, Edgar; 4. Jim Lietz, Mosinee; 5. Kevin Tessmer, Wausau; 6. Keagen Benz, Wausau; 7. Brian Marquardt, Weston
Second Heat: 1. Phil Malouf, Manitowish Waters; 2. George Seliger, Wausau; 3. Shawn Kemnetz, Hancock; 4. C. Ferge; 5. Joe Kuehn, Wausau; 6. Kole Ferge, Edgar; 7. Greg Blount, Marathon
Feature: 1. Seliger; 2. Blount; 3. P. Malouf; 4. Kuehn; 5. K. Ferge; 6. Call; 7. Jim Lietz; 8. John Lietz; 9. C. Ferge; 10. Tessmer; 11. K. Benz; 12. Marquardt; 13. S. Kemnetz; 14. Heidmann
Rockstar Mini Stocks
Fast Qualifier: Garret Strachota, Wausau, 16.591 sec.
First Heat: 1. Clayton Phillips, Marathon; 2. Travis Lang, Wausau; 3. Kendra Baumann, Wausau; 4. Steve Koepke, Edgar; 5. Wayne Gauger, Kronenwetter; 6. Joey Blaschka, Wausau; 7. Josh Dublin, Weston
Second Heat: 1. Branden Sischo, Stratford; 2. Luke Mikula, Wausau; 3. Brad Lecher, Wausau; 4. Ashley Schoone, Gleason; 5. Amanda Rowe, Mosinee; 6. Gunner Colbert, Mosinee; 7. Max Manowski, Wausau
Third Heat: 1. Hunter Landwehr, Stratford; 2. Eric Breitenfeldt, Wausau; 3. Strachota; 4. Kyle Check, Shantytown; 5. Chris Boykins, Wausau; 6 Zach Budleski, Wausau; 7. Brad Abt, Schofield; 8. Tom Lecher, Wausau
Semi-Feature: 1. Phillips; 2. Mikula; 3. Rowe; 4. Blaschka; 5. Manowski; 6. Koepke; 7. Baumann; 8. Gauger; 9. Dublin; 10. Lang
Feature: 1. Landwehr; 2. Strachota; 3. Schoone; 4. Breitenfeldt; 5. Check; 6. Boykins; 7. Budleski; 8. Abt; 9. Phillips; 10. Tom Lecher; 11. Sischo; 12. Brad Lecher; 13. Mikula; 14. Colbert
E.H. Wolf & Sons Bandoleros
Fast Qualifier: Alex Hartwig, Portage, 16.142 sec.
First Heat: 1. Laci Stargardt, Neillsville; 2. Brennen Lensing, Rockton, Ill.; 3. Mason Obermeyer, Union Grove; 4. Harley Johnson, Oconomowoc; 5. Mason Oleson, Mosinee; 6. Markus Obermeyer, Union Grove
Second Heat: 1. Anna Malouf, Rhinelander; 2. Bentley Thompson, West Salem; 3. Axel Oldenhoff, Lake Mills; 4. Ayden Brockhouse, Shakopee, Minn.; 5. Oliver Weinkauf, Merrill; 6. Jayden Johnson, Oconomowoc
Third Heat: 1. Cohen Henze, Juda; 2. Paxton Benz, Wausau; 3. Hartwig; 4. Ayrton Brockhouse, Shakopee, Minn.; 5. Avery Linnerud, Milton; 6. Penn Sauter, DeForest; 7. Collin Murphy, Janesville
Semi-Feature: 1. Thompson; 2. Lensing; 3. Stargardt; 4. Mason Oldenhoff; 5. H. Johnson; 6. Oleson; 7. Markus Oldenhoff
Feature: 1. Hartwig; 2. Henze; 3. A. Malouf; 4. Murphy; 5. Linnerud; 6. Ayden Brockhouse; 7. Thompson; 8. Lensing; 9. Weinkauf; 10. J. Johnson; 11. Sauter; 12. P. Benz; 13. Oldenhoff; 14. Ayrton Brockhouse