by Tommy Goudge (September 27, 2008) – Wayne Johnson had never turned a lap at Ohsweken Speedway before Friday night, but that inexperience didn’t slow down the Oklahoma native one bit on Saturday night. Driving a Styres Racing sprinter, Johnson passed race-long leader Dustin Daggett for the lead with 6 laps to go in the 30 lap Feature and held on through a late race caution period to claim the $8,000 victory.

Friday night twin feature winners Dustin Daggett and Jason Barney started on the front row in the Canadian Sprint Car Nationals 30 lap A-Feature, which saw Daggett take the lead and start to pull away when the green flag dropped. Behind them, Wayne Johnson quickly moved up from his 6th starting spot to 3rd by the time the first lap was completed. Daggett was on a mission early on, and ran the fastest lap of the entire evening on lap 2 at 13.497 seconds, more than 1 tenth faster than Chuck Hebing’s fastest lap in time trials. As the 3rd lap was completed, Daggett was already approaching lapped traffic and began to slice his way through the field with Barney, Johnson, Gregg Dalman, and Brad Malloy in tow.

Deeper in the pack, 25th starter Dale Blaney was carving a path to the front, and had advanced to 15th when the first caution flag flew for Barney on lap 8. Barney spun in turn 3 while running 2nd, causing Brad Malloy to spin to a stop to avoid hitting Barney’s #87. Barney, who came into the event riding a streak of 2 consecutive runner-up finishes in the Nationals, was forced to restart at the back of the pack along with Malloy. Malloy, a first-time feature winner earlier in the season at Ohsweken, had made a spectacular charge through the field in his heat race to earn a top-6 starting spot in the feature, and was battling in the top 7 at the time of the incident.

With the green flag back out, Daggett now had the veteran Johnson on his tail, but the young driver from Michigan was still very fast and again quickly began to negotiate through the lapped traffic, while Johnson survived some close calls with lapped cars to keep Daggett’s Mott Motorsports #2m in his sights. An extended green flag period ensued, with Daggett and Johnson continuing out front while Bryan Howland had moved up to 3rd after starting 7th, Dalman continued to hold down 4th, and defending Nationals champion Steve Poirier was into the top 5. Poirier’s bid to win 3 Nationals titles in a row stalled in 5th however, and the Quebec driver began to feel the pressure of fast qualifier Chuck Hebing, and Dale Blaney who was now in the top 7 and looking for more. Hebing and Blaney continued their charge into the top 5, passing both Poirier and then Dalman just after the race had reached the 2/3’s mark.

Back up front, Daggett began to have trouble with lapped traffic, allowing Johnson to move in behind the Daggett machine and start putting the pressure on. During the 25th circuit, Johnson made his move for the lead and took charge for good coming out of turn 4 after a brief battle with Daggett. Johnson quickly began to open a gap as Daggett’s car was not handling as it had earlier in the race, while behind them Howland was trying valiantly to make up ground, and Blaney got around Hebing and into 4th during the 27th lap.

Johnson appeared to have the race in the bag when disaster nearly struck for the 2008 Knoxville 360 Nationals winner as Jason Barney spun again in turn 3 after Johnson had taken the white flag. Quick thinking by Johnson allowed him to narrowly avoid contact with the Barney machine and hold the lead, but the gap he had opened up was gone, and 1 more lap was still to be completed. With the green and white flags waving together, Johnson took off and drove a flawless final lap, finishing 8 tenths of a second ahead of Daggett, while Howland, Blaney, and Hebing rounded out the top 5. Dalman held on for a fine 6th place effort, followed by Poirier, Kevin Job, Mike Stelter, and Doug Emery in 10th. Daggett’s 2nd place was his 3rd top-5 finish out of the 4 Canadian Nationals, while Howland and Job recorded top-10 finishes for the 2nd year in a row, along with Mike Stelter who took home 9th place for the 2nd consecutive year.

61 cars in total signed in for competition on Saturday night, as 8 drivers were on hand who did not compete on Friday night. Only 2 cars did not return as Brett Mann’s #79 SOD Championship machine suffered engine problems on Friday, and Jared Fink’s weekend was cut short on Friday after a hard flip damaged his car beyond repair. A number of favourites expected to be in contention come feature time on Saturday suffered setbacks early in the evening, including Daggett and Poirier, who were able to overcome their issues to have strong runs. Daggett backed his machine into the wall in turn 4, damaging the rear end assembly and suspension components, but quick work by the former SOD champ and his crew got the #2m out at the end of time trials for 1 lap on the clocks. Poirier, meanwhile, had to quickly shut down his #28fm at the end of his 2 time trial laps after a problem with his rear end gears, but his crew too was able to work quickly and get him out for his heat race. Justin Barger, Jared Zimbardi, and Scott Kreutter, among others, were not so lucky with various ailments and did not make the feature.

Chuck Hebing bested the 61-car field in time trials with a lap of 13.613 seconds to take home the Kear’s Speed Shop Top Qualifier Award, while Glenn Styres was 2nd in time trials with a lap of 13.704 seconds and claimed the Bicknell Racing Products Fastest Canadian Qualifier Award. 6 qualifying heat races were run, with the winners inverted into the top 6 starting spots in the feature using their qualifying times. Dustin Daggett, Jason Barney, Wayne Johnson, Gregg Dalman, Brad Malloy, and Dain Naida took the heat race victories, with Johnson and Naida the only drivers able to come from the 6th starting spot in their heat races to win and take an inversion spot. 3 B-Mains were run, with Bobby Breen, Bubba Broderick, and Alain Bergeron claiming those victories. Rick Wilson took home the win in the inaugural Riverside Bar and Grill Non-Qualifiers Second Chance “Little Feature”, earning him the 28th and final starting position in the A-Main. Wilson was driving a car he had purchased on Friday evening after destroying his primary car in a crash with Jared Fink on Friday night, and the Wilson team worked hard to get Rick back out on the track on Saturday night. None of the affiliate sanctions required provisional starting spots on Saturday night, which paved the way for the 3 fastest qualifiers in time trials to take starting positions 25-27 in the A-Feature. This allowed Dale Blaney, Blake Breen, and Mikey Kruchka to start in those positions in the 28 car starting field, the largest in the 4 year history of the Nationals.

Jason Barney’s #87 claimed Corr/Pak Merchandising Best Appearing Car honours, and Dale Blaney was the KSE Racing Products A-Feature Hard Charger by virtue of his drive from 25th on the grid to finish 4th. Drivers from 3 Canadian provinces and 5 U.S. States took part in the event, including Gord Kynoch of Spruce Grove, Alberta, who represented that province in the Nationals for the first time, while Wayne Johnson was the first ever entrant in the Nationals from Oklahoma.

The red flag was needed 3 times on Saturday night, as Chris Muhleisen flipped very hard in turn 1 during the 2nd B-Main, while at the same time John Burbridge, Jr. got upside down in turn 3, but both drivers fortunately emerged unscathed from their badly mangled machines. Tom Huppunen also flipped in Heat Race #4 and Rob Pietz did a rollover in the Little Feature.

Plans are already in the works for the 5th anniversary edition of the Canadian Sprint Car Nationals in 2009, and those dates will be released shortly. Event coordinator Ken Pelkie announced in the drivers meeting on Saturday night that the 2009 Nationals will once again feature a purse increase, as next year’s feature is slated to pay $9,000 to the winner and $650 to start the feature

SEPTEMBER 27, 2008


TIME TRIALS (top 36 inverted for Heat Race starting positions)
Position. # Name (Hometown) Best Lap
1. 45 Chuck Hebing (Ontario, NY) 13.613
2. 0 Glenn Styres (Ohsweken) 13.704
3. 94j Wayne Johnson (Mustang, OK) 13.711
4. 28fm Steve Poirier (Saint-Mathieu-de-Beloeil, QC) 13.823
5. 8b Alain Bergeron (Saint-Pie, QC) 13.845
6. 6n Dain Naida (Belleville, MI) 13.987
7. 51h Bryan Howland (Auburn, NY) 14.049
8. 25p Michael Parent (Granby, QC) 14.049
9. 6b Dale Blaney (Hartford, OH) 14.065
10. 27h Tom Huppunen (Fenwick) 14.065
11. 5m Brad Malloy (Niagara Falls) 14.073
12. 9b Bobby Breen (Savannah, NY) 14.075
13. 8 Blake Breen (Savannah, NY) 14.113
14. 1z Jessica Zemken (Sprakers, NY) 14.129
15. 51 Lee Ladouceur (Alexandria) 14.154
16. 49t Gregg Dalman (Grand Ledge, MI) 14.158
17. 01 Mikey Kruchka (Hamilton) 14.164
18. 151kb Brian McDonald (Cornwall) 14.186
19. 47x Louie Carufel (Port Huron, MI) 14.194
20. 87 Jason Barney (Constantia, NY) 14.199
21. 42w Rick Wilson (Joyceville) 14.205
22. 33 Doug Emery (Nedrow, NY) 14.239
23. 23 Ben Rutan (Jerome, MI) 14.256
24. 5 Keith Dempster (Alton) 14.256
25. 2m Dustin Daggett (Portland, MI) 14.281
26. 21x Kevin Job (Campbellville) 14.294
27. 36 Mike Stelter (Ontario, NY) 14.306
28. 01w Kyle Wilson (Joyceville) 14.320
29. 1a John Riegling (Chatham) 14.331
30. 77x Ryan Hunsinger (Brantford) 14.341
31. 52 Scott Kreutter (Alden, NY) 14.350
32. 35 Jared Zimbardi (Salamanca, NY) 14.400
33. 00 Ryan Grubaugh (St. Johns, MI) 14.425
34. 31 John Burbridge, Jr. (Simcoe) 14.428
35. 7x Kyle Moffit (South Dayton, NY) 14.431
36. 7m Justin Martin (St. Thomas) 14.437
37. 32 Justin Barger (Montrose, NY) 14.463
38. 7 Jim Price (Wainfleet) 14.474
39. 10m Chris Muhleisen (Arkport, NY) 14.488
40. 94 Stan Zanchin (Fort Erie) 14.491
41. 69 Rob Pietz (Port Colborne) 14.593
42. 10 Bob Crawford (Sutton) 14.604
43. 25 Warren Mahoney (Lefroy) 14.647
44. 4 Bubby Kerrick (Stanley, NY) 14.659
45. 50 Normand Beaudreault (Saint-Ours, QC) 14.677
46. 5b Bubba Broderick (Brookfield, CT) 14.714
47. 38 Brad Knab (Delevan, NY) 14.752
48. 90 James Evans (Beamsville) 14.836
49. 5d Dave Dykstra (Port Colborne) 14.852
50. f37 Jamie Collard (Princeton) 14.852
51. 30 Adam West (Ridgetown) 14.925
52. 81 Derek Jonathan (Lewiston, NY) 14.990
53. 19jr Rob Ledingham (Port Colborne) 14.998
54. 71 Craig Downie (Burlington) 15.001
55. 22 Jim Porter (Grand Island, NY) 15.104
56. 83w James Whittaker (Lynden) 15.148
57. 79 Dick Mahoney (Newmarket) 15.313
58. 9jr Tim Zack (Dain City) 15.435
59. 15aw April Wilson (Joyceville) 15.436
60. 15k Gord Kynoch (Spruce Grove, ALTA) 15.544
61. 31t Andy Teunessen (Hastings, MI) 17.840

(Top 3 Transfer to Feature, Winners enter inversion for first 6 feature starting spots)

1. 2m Dustin Daggett, 2. 51h Bryan Howland, 3. 45 Chuck Hebing, 4. 8 Bobby Breen, 5. 47x Louie Carufel, 6. 52 Scott Kreutter, 7. 5d Dave Dykstra, 8. 32 Justin Barger, 9. 25 Warren Mahoney, 10. 22 Jim Porter, 11. 31t Andy Teunessen

BS&B RADIATOR Heat Race #2
1. 87 Jason Barney, 2. 21x Kevin Job, 3. 0 Glenn Styres, 4. 25p Michael Parent, 5. 1z Jessica Zemken, 6. 7 Jim Price, 7. f37 Jamie Collard, 8. 4 Bubby Kerrick, 9. 83w James Whittaker, 10. 35 Jared Zimbardi

1. 94j Wayne Johnson, 2. 36 Mike Stelter, 3. 00 Ryan Grubaugh, 4. 51 Lee Ladouceur, 5. 42w Rick Wilson, 6. 6b Dale Blaney, 7. 10m Chris Muhlheisen, 8. 50 Normand Beaudreault, 9. 30 Adam West, 10. 79 Dick Mahoney

1. 49t Gregg Dalman, 2. 28fm Steve Poirier, 3. 33 Doug Emery, 4. 5b Bubba Broderick, 5. 94 Stan Zanchin, 6. 31 John Burbridge, Jr. 7. 81 Derek Jonathan, 8. 9jr Tim Zack, 9. 01w Kyle Wilson, 10. 27h Tom Huppunen

1. 5m Brad Malloy, 2. 23 Ben Rutan, 3. 1a John Riegling, 4. 69 Rob Pietz, 5. 8b Alain Bergeron, 6. 7x Kyle Moffit, 7. 01 Mikey Kruchka, 8. 38 Brad Knab, 9. 19jr Rob Ledingham, 10. 15aw April Wilson

1. 6n Dain Naida, 2. 77x Ryan Hunsinger, 3. 7m Justin Martin, 4. 151kb Brian McDonald, 5. 10 Bob Crawford, 6. 5 Keith Dempster, 7. 9b Bobby Breen, 8. 90 James Evans, 9. 15k Gord Kynoch, 10. 71 Craig Downie

B-MAINS (top 2 transfer to Feature)

1. 8 Bobby Breen, 2. 25p Michael Parent, 3. 5d Dave Dykstra, 4. 47x Louie Carufel, 5. 25 Warren Mahoney, 6. 7 Jim Price, 7. 4 Bubby Kerrick, 8. 52 Scott Kreutter, DNS: 1z Jessica Zemken, f37 Jamie Collard, 32 Justin Barger, 83w James Whittaker, 22 Jim Porter, 35 Jared Zimbardi, 31t Andy Teunessen

1. 5b Bubba Broderick, 2. 51 Lee Ladouceur, 3. 42w Rick Wilson, 4. 6b Dale Blaney, 5. 81 Derek Jonathan, 6. 30 Adam West, 7. 9jr Tim Zack, 8. 50 Normand Beaudreault, 9. 79 Dick Mahoney, 10. 94 Stan Zanchin, 11. 10m Chris Muhleisen, 12. 31 John Burbridge, Jr., DNS: 01w Kyle Wilson, 27h Tom Huppunen

1. 8b Alain Bergeron, 2. 151kb Brian McDonald, 3. 69 Rob Pietz, 4. 9b Bobby Breen, 5. 5 Keith Dempster, 6. 01 Mikey Kruchka, 7. 90 James Evans, 8. 15k Gord Kynoch, 9. 38 Brad Knab, 10. 42w Rick Wilson, 11. 10 Bob Crawford, 12. 7x Kyle Moffit, 13. 19jr Rob Ledingham
DNS: 71 Craig Downie

(Non-Qualified Drivers who completed a B-Main – Winner transfers to 28th starting spot in A-Feature)
1. 42w Rick Wilson, 2. 5 Keith Dempster, 3. 25 Warren Mahoney, 4. 4 Bubby Kerrick, 5. 7 Jim Price, 6. 47x Louie Carufel, 7. 50 Normand Beaudreault, 8. 15k Gord Kynoch, 9. 30 Adam West, 10. 90 James Evans, 11. 81 Derek Jonathan, 12. 15aw April Wilson, 13. 38 Brad Knab, 14. 69 Rob Pietz, 15. 5d Dave Dykstra, 16. 9jr Tim Zack

Position. # Name (Starting Position)
1. 94j Wayne Johnson (6)
2. 2m Dustin Daggett (1)
3. 51h Bryan Howland (7)
4. 6b Dale Blaney (25)
5. 45 Chuck Hebing (13)
6. 49t Gregg Dalman (3)
7. 28fm Steve Poirier (10)
8. 21x Kevin Job (8)
9. 36 Mike Stelter (9)
10. 33 Doug Emery (16)
11. 77x Ryan Hunsinger (12)
12. 6n Dain Naida (5)
13. 23 Ben Rutan (11)
14. 7m Justin Martin (18)
15. 42w Rick Wilson (28)
16. 151kb Brian McDonald (24)
17. 5m Brad Malloy (4)
18. 51 Lee Ladouceur (23)
19. 8 Blake Breen (26)
20. 5b Bubba Broderick (20)
21. 87 Jason Barney (2)
22. 00 Ryan Grubaugh (15)
23. 8b Alain Bergeron (21)
24. 0 Glenn Styres (14)
25. 25p Michael Parent (22)
26. 01 Mikey Kruchka (27)
27. 1a John Riegling (17)
28. 9b Bobby Breen

Lap Leaders: Daggett (1-24), Johnson (25-30)
Caution Flags: 2 (lap 8, lap 30)

Corr/Pak Merchandising Best Appearing Car Award – #87 Jason Barney
KSE Racing Products A-Main Hard Charger Award – #6b Dale Blaney (passed 21 cars)
Kear’s Speed Shop Top Qualifier Award ($500) – #45 Chuck Hebing (13.613 seconds – 99.039 MPH, 159.387 KPH)
Bicknell Racing Products Fastest Canadian Qualifier Award ($500) – #0 Glenn Styres (13.704 seconds – 98.511 MPH, 158.538 KPH)

A-Main Contingency Sponsors:
Simpson Racing, Comp Cams, Grisdale Racing Products, Winters Racing Products, Seals-It, Hoosier Tire, Manton Pushrods, HRP Wings, Motorstate Distributing, Kinser Air Filters, Diversified Machine, Rocket Headers, Saldana Racing Products, Quaker State, Keizer Aluminum Wheels, ICS Racer’s Tape, Corr/Pak Merchandising