Beach Wins First Ever Late Model Sportsman Feature
After gloomy skies gave way to sunshine, fans converged on the Owosso Speedway for Michigan Auto Racing Fan Club Night. The air was filled with eager excitement as fans were treated to another night of thrills, spills, camaraderie, rivalry, and pure motorsports competition at the historic oval.
The Durotech Automotive Street Stocks were first up for their 25-lap feature event. Previous weeks winner Lonnie Saumier started on the pole. The competition was fierce in the opening laps, but a moment of oversteer in turn four bunched the field up and left a small opening on the inside, which Owosso’s Ron Hart took advantage of, snatching the lead away. Hart would have the car to beat the rest of the distance as he went on to claim his first victory of the season. Chris Begg would come home second with Jeff Owens in hot pursuit. Bo Smith and Saumier completed the top five. Heat races were claimed by Saumier and Hart. Jeff Owens established a new track record in qualifying for the second time in as many weeks with a 16.353.
The next race would be the M&K Truck Center Pure Stocks for a 20-lap main event. Lonnie Saumier, fresh off of a top five run in the previous race, hopped into the Pure Stock and made it count, driving from eighth on the grid to take the win. It would be Saumier’s second win this season with one the prior week behind the wheel of his Street Stock. Jason Spencer and Hunter Doutre would complete the podium in the hotly contested race. Mike Mosier and Bob Elliott were able to complete the top five. Jordan Gustin, Doutre, and Saumier conquered heat race action, and Saumier dropped the track record with a 18.133 in qualifying.
The debut of the Gross Construction Late Model Sportsman, a new division in 2023 to the Owosso Speedway. Drivers from all over the midwest came together to compete for the $1800 grand prize. The battle between Auburn, Indiana’s Tanner Jack and Muskegon, Michigan’s Jon Beach would be the highlight of the race. Beach ran down Tanner but would spend several laps trying to work over Tanner for the lead. Eventually Beach would wrestle the lead away, as he sprinted off into the sunset to take the first ever victory for the division. Former Kalamazoo Speedway Champion Kenny Head would be runner up over his teammate Dylan Stovall. Lane Head would be fourth with 2021 ASA/CRA Super Series Champion Hunter Jack completing the top five. Chris Munson and Tanner Jack claimed heat race victories, and Dylan Stovall established the track record with a 15.511.
The MacAllister Rentals Sport Compacts would be set for three big feature events. Matthew Elsey picked up right where left off, claiming a second straight victory in the A Division. Matthew would finish ahead of a hard charging John Eastman, Pat Dent, Blake Gokee, and Dylan Spencer.The B Division would see father imitate son as Matt Elsey went on to claim B Division glory. Jeff Asmus was second with Corbin Kelley, Dan Hassard, and Dominick Salander in the top five. The C Feature made a strong claim at being best race of the night as Oliver Kucher won a hard fought battle over Abby Kolb. Damian Watters, Chad Baker, and Bill McBride were the rest of the top five. Heats were won by: Blake Gokee, Matthew Elsey, Dan Hassard, Matt Elsey, and Damian Watters. Matthew Elsey set fast time with a 17.127.
Earlier in the afternoon the Showcase Auto Sales Mini-Wedges had their first event of the season on the makeshift track on the front stretch. Ethan Reamer won a hotly contested Junior Division feature over Talen Diehl. Brentley Evans won the Senior Division feature over Blake Childers Jr., Cohen Childers, Danica Mason, and Kash Tremble.
Article Credit: Chris Fobbe
Submitted By: Chris Fobbe