HERBERS RETURNS TO VICTORY LANE AT THUNDER HILL
By Troy Harrison
Jeff Herbers has been a regular top contender in the Xtreme Motor Sports Clash on the Hill, but has had some difficulty getting back to the Pit Stop Liquor Victory Lane this year. That changed Saturday night, as Herbers won a hard-fought BSB IMCA Modified feature. Joining him in Victory Lane were Jim Powell Jr. (Heinen Repair Service IMCA Stock Cars), Eddie Schwope Jr. (Kansas National Guard IMCA Northern SportMods), Dominic Thyfault (BuyRaceParts.com IMCA Hobby Stocks), and Wade Heller (IMCA Sport Compacts).
Herbers, the 2010 Track Champion, started the BSB Manufacturing IMCA Modified feature in sixth starting spot. Early in the feature, it appeared that he might be headed for a strong top-five finish as Allen Halderman raced out to a straightaway lead. A midrace caution flag allowed the field to close up to Halderman’s back bumper, however, and on the restart Halderman pushed high in turn three. This allowed Jesse Richter and Herbers past. Herbers then challenged Richter for several laps before moving past and on to the win. Richter finished second, with Derrick Brown having a strong run to third. Mike Petersilie did an impression of a pogo stick, moving forward in the pack, then backward, then forward again, before finishing fourth. Rounding out the top five was Mat Stallbaumer, who dropped Halderman to sixth late in the race.
At the last race, Mike Nichols claimed a large New Winner’s Bonus in the Kansas National Guard IMCA Stock Car feature. The bonus then reset, and Jim Powell Jr. didn’t wait for it to build up before collecting it. He did it in impressive fashion, too, by moving up to spend much of the feature racing hard with Kyle Vanover before powering past Vanover on the high side. Vanover would pull into the pits a couple of laps later. Powell’s race wasn’t done, as he had to hold off a hard charging Greg Deters for the win. Deters’ last ditch challenge came up less than a car length short, giving a very happy Powell the checkered flag. Deters finished second, with Mike Taylor third, Matt Haid forth, and Brian Labonte fifth.
For the first half of the Kansas National Guard IMCA Northern SportMod show, it looked as if Gary Holthaus might score his first feature win at Thunder Hill Speedway. The Topeka driver held a lead of as much as a half straightaway before Luke Stallbaumer made it up to challenge. Eventually, Eddie Schwope Jr. pulled past both drivers and established a lead, as Kyle Olberding passed Stallbaumer for second. The anticipated Olberding run on Schwope didn’t happen, and the veteran Schwope took the checkered, followed by Olberding, Stallbumer, Kurtis Pihl, and Tony Manley. The win tied Schwope with Olberding for the season point lead.
DominicThyfault has been a strong force in BuyRaceParts.com IMCA Hobby Stock action in the second half of the season after spending much of the first half as a perennial second place finisher. On Saturday night, he had to work his way past a tough three-car battle between Josh Haid, Kelly Pihl, and Waylon Banks. After overhauling this fast trio, Thyfault set sail for the checkered flag and never looked back. Behind him, Pihl emerged in second, with Banks third and Haid fourth. Completing the top five was Jacob Crowell.
Only three IMCA Sport Compacts were in action, and Wade Heller took the win over Kaylee Diekman and Ronda Mewes.
Thunder Hill Speedway will be idle next week, September 8, to allow racers to compete in the IMCA SuperNationals at Boone, Iowa. The Xtreme Motor Sports Clash on the Hill continues Saturday Night, September 15, with Breast Cancer Awareness Night. Gates open at 5:00 PM, driver’s meeting at 6:30, hotlaps and races to follow. Adult General Admission is $10.00, kids 12 and under are free. Coolers are allowed (Canned beer only – no glass bottles) for a $10 charge. Pit passes are $25.00.
Thunder Hill Speedway is located at 11995 NW 142nd Road (2 miles West of US-75 on NW 142nd Road), in Mayetta, KS. For more information, please visit www.racethunderhillspeedway.com.