WAUSAU, Wis. (June 13) – It was a night of firsts at State Park Speedway, with new feature winners coming from near and far on Aqua Finance Night.

Four classes saw drivers post their first-ever feature wins at the track, including Shawn Grabinger of Lakeville, Minn., taking the 30-lap Midwest Dash Series traveling tour feature. Zach Budleski of Wausau also won the Rockstar Mini Stocks feature, Iowa’s Michael Weber claimed the legends cars feature and Bentley Thompson of West Salem won the Bandoleros feature.

Grabinger won in just his second visit to State Park, leading all 30 laps from the pole to also win a Midwest Dash main for the first time. He held off Anna Malouf Price of Rhinelander, another driver looking for her first feature win at the track and first Dash Series feature.

Grabinger cleared Malouf Price on the second lap and had pulled out to a five car-length lead when he started hitting lapped traffic on lap 14. The two checked out far ahead of the rest of the field, with drivers including defending State Park mini mods champion and last year’s SPS Dash race champion Tim Anderson of Pittsville, past Dash Series champion George Sparkman of Loves Park, Ill., and fast qualifier Mark Dewey of Janesville caught deep in traffic early.

Grabinger maintained his margin until Malouf Price started to close in slightly in the later laps. The lead vanished with five laps left, though, when Grabinger came up on a pair of lapped cars racing side-by-side. With no opening to get by, Grabinger was nearly caught on a pick while Malouf Price pulled to the outside.

Grabinger finally found an opening and cleared the lapped cars with three laps left, almost the exact same time as a caution coming out, with one of the lapped cars receiving the black flag for not observing the blue flag to move over for the leader. That bunched up the field for a final restart, giving a final chance for Malouf Price, third-place Travis Hill of Marshfield and Anderson, who had moved up to fourth. The restart was single-file, though, and Grabinger was unchallenged by Malouf Price over the final laps.

Grabinger joined a list of past Midwest Dash Series winners at State Park that includes Anderson and the late George Seliger. Malouf Price finished a Dash Series career-best second, with Hill third, Anderson fourth and Dewey finishing fifth after getting by Tyler Muller of Sun Prairie in the final laps.

Budleski won the first feature of his five-year racing career, getting to the front early and working through lapped traffic to win the 25-lap mini stocks feature.

Budleski drove inside Mike Meharg of Auburndale on lap 3 when Meharg drifted high, took the lead a lap later and held the point the rest of the way. He towed Meharg by 5-6 car lengths most of the race, until that margin closed up late as the leaders drove through lapped traffic. Meharg was back within two car lengths over the final laps, but Budleski stayed clean going outside lapped cars on the inside.

With the win Budleski returned a familiar name and number to feature winning, joining his uncle and former late model competitor Mike Budleski in winning features at State Park. He also raced and won in memory of his great-great uncle Stanley Budleski, who passed away last week.

Ashley Schoone of Gleason finished second, getting by Meharg in the final turn after Meharg got loose after clipping a lapped car in Turn 3 of the final lap. Schoone also held off regular mini stocks frontrunners Eric Breitenfeldt and Garret Strachota in a 10-lap battle late, holding her inside line while running third as both tried to find a way around. Breitenfeldt was award third at the end with Strachota fourth and Clayton Phillips of Marathon fifth, after Meharg’s third-place finish was nullified after failing post-race inspection.

Amanda Rowe of Mosinee won the semi-feature, with Shawn Carpenter of Marshfield coming in second and joining her in transferring to the feature. Female drivers also swept all three mini stocks heat races with Kendra Baumann of Wausau, Rowe and Schoone winning heat races.

The legends feature saw a late decision pay off for Weber, who won the feature in his first visit to State Park Speedway. Weber took the 25-lap feature, holding off Elliott Weiler of Marshfield in the closing laps.

A native of Marion, Iowa, just outside of Cedar Rapids, Weber made the decision midweek to come to State Park, and he took the lead on the third lap of the feature, getting by Devin Dieringer of Marshfield for first.

Weber led the field but did not get far away with Rose Borntreger of Elroy and Weiler following not far behind, and Weiler got by Borntreger for second on lap 17 after a 10-lap battle for the spot. Weiler then closed in on the leader, getting near his bumper going into the first and third turns, but Weber was able to get a strong pull on the straightaways to stay ahead. Weiler then got caught briefly behind a lapped car on lap 24 and had to back off, allowing Weber to cruise on the final lap to the win.

Weiler finished second with Borntreger third, Hayden Dieringer of Marshfield fourth and Cael Slater of Kendall fifth. Weber and Ernie Duerr of Hewitt also won heat races, while Karl Genett of Rangeline set fast time but was caught up in an accident early in the feature and had to retire early.

Thompson rounded out a night of new winners with his first feature win at State Park. He slipped inside Carter Stein of Germantown for the lead on the third lap and led the rest of the way in the 12-lap Bandoleros feature.

Thompson received a challenge in the final laps from another driver looking for his first Bandos feature at State Park. Fast qualifier Oliver Weinkauf of Merrill moved into second on lap 8 and was closing in when he slipped up coming out of Turn 2 on the white flag lap. Weinkauf rallied again on the final lap, getting to Thompson’s back bumper coming into Turn 3 on the final lap before Thompson held on to win by two car lengths.

Racing returns at State Park Speedway in two weeks with the Imperial Industries Flip Merwin Memorial coming June 27. Super late models, pure stocks, mini mods, mini stocks, legends and Bandoleros all will race, and the night will conclude with a fireworks display. Menke Auto Group Qualifying begins at 6 p.m. with racing to follow at 7 p.m.

Midwest Dash Series
Fast Qualifier: Mark Dewey, Janesville, 15.811 sec.
First Heat: 1. Travis Hill, Marshfield; 2. Shawn Grabinger, Lakeville, Minn.; 3. Phil Malouf, Manitowish Waters; 4. John Lietz, Mosinee; 5. Anna Malouf, Rhinelander; 6. Dale Louze, Mosinee; 7. Pat Dickman, Marshfield; 8. Ashley Bell, Lakeville, Minn.
Second Heat: 1. Gary Garand, Weston; 2. Tyler Muller, Sun Prairie; 3. George Sparkman, Loves Park, Ill.; 4. Tim Anderson, Pittsville; 5. Dewey; 6. Jim Lietz, Mosinee; 7. Keagen Benz, Wausau; 8. Justin Pearson, Belvidere, Ill.
Feature: 1. Grabinger; 2. A. Malouf; 3. Hill; 4. Anderson; 5. Dewey; 6. Muller; 7. Pearson; 8. Jim Lietz; 9. Sparkman; 10. John Lietz; 11. P. Malouf; 12. Marquardt; 13. K. Benz; 14. Dickman; 15. Louze; 16. Bell; 17. Garand

Rockstar Energy Drink Mini Stocks
Fast Qualifier: Nick Kurth, Wausau, 16.669 sec.
First Heat: 1. Kendra Baumann, Wausau; 2. Shawn Carpenter, Marshfield; 3. Austin Bohman, Wausau; 4. Dylan Henry, Gleason; 5. Xander Wayda, Wausau; 6. Joe Schoener, Wausau
Second Heat: 1. Amanda Rowe, Mosinee; 2. Mike Meharg, Auburndale; 3. Abby Kohn, Wausau; 4. Jenny Wegner, Wausau; 5. Zach Budleski, Wausau; 6. Tom Lecher, Wausau; 7. Jacob Hintze, Wausau
Third Heat: 1. Ashley Schoone, Gleason; 2. Eric Breitenfeldt, Wausau; 3. Clayton Phillips, Marathon; 4. Kurth; 5. Garret Strachota, Wausau; 6. Kooper Guralski, Wausau; 7. Luke Mikula, Wausau
Semi-Feature: 1. Rowe; 2. Carpenter; 3. Henry; 4. Bohman; 5. Kohn; 6. Wayda; 7. Baumann
Feature: 1. Budleski; 2. Schoone; 3. E. Breitenfeldt; 4. Strachota; 5. Phillips; 6. Kurth; 7. Mikula; 8. K. Guralski; 9. Lecher; 10. Wegner; 11. Hintze; 12. Rowe; 13. Carpenter; DQ: Meharg

Fast Qualifier: Karl Genett, Rangeline, 15.527 sec.
First Heat: 1. Ernie Duerr, Hewitt; 2. Devon Lee, New Lisbon; 3. Devin Dieringer, Marshfield; 4. Anthony Lashua, Mosinee; 5. Dalton Lee, New Lisbon; 6. Andy Karl, Mosinee
Second Heat: 1. Michael Weber, Marion, Iowa; 2. Rose Borntreger, Elroy; 3. Genett; 4. Eliott Weiler, Marshfield; 5. Russ Weiler, Marshfield; 6. Cael Slater, Kendall; 7. Hayden Dieringer, Marshfield
Feature: 1. Weber; 2. E. Weiler; 3. Borntreger; 4. H. Dieringer; 5. Slater; 6. Karl; 7. Devon Lee; 8. Lashua; 9. Dalton Lee; 10. Duerr; 11. D. Dieringer; 12. R. Weiler; 13. Genett

Fast Qualifier: Oliver Weinkauf, Merrill, 16.294 sec.
Heat: 1. Paxton Benz, Wausau; 2. O. Weinkauf; 3. Gage Kubicz, Whitewater; 4. Carter Stein, Germantown; 6. Bentley Thompson, West Salem
Feature: 1. Thompson; 2. O. Weinkauf; 3. P. Benz; 4. Stein; 5. Kubicz; 6. Michael