Wildung, Johnson share NLRA victories at Viking
By Ray BesteViking Speedway
ALEXANDRIA, Minn. (Sept. 4-5) — Jeff Wildung and Zach Johnson opened the Northern LateModel Racing Association season with weekend victories at Viking Speedway, and fittingly, the standout Minnesota drivers ended the NLRA season the same way.
Wildung, of Nassau, Minn., captured the weekend-opening 25-lapper over Johnson while the Kensington, Minn., driver reversed the finishing order in Sunday's 25-lap finale.
Another weekend winner was Mike Balcaen. The driver from Winnipeg, Manitoba, wrapped up his fourth career NLRA touring title. Balcaen, whose better weekend finish was fifth on Saturday, also won NLRA championships in 2000, '02 and '08.
In Saturday's feature, Wildung and Don Shaw started on the front row with Wildung taking command early. Johnson took second from Shaw on the eighth lap and worked the low groove while chasing the high-running Wildung. Wildung won the side-by-side duel followed by Johnson, Shaw and 15th-starting Mike Prochnow.
In Sunday's feature, Johnson led all the way while Wildung advanced from his fourth-row starting spot to finish second. Shawn Kirwin was third followed by 11th-starting Joel Cryderman and Ricky Weiss.
Wildung's solid weekend wrapped up another Viking Speedway weekly title.
NLRA @ Viking (Sept. 4): (1) Jeff Wildung, (2) Zach Johnson, (3) Don Shaw, (4) Mike Prochnow, (5) Mike Balcaen, (6) Ricky Weiss, (7) Shaun Peterson, (9) Corey Seckerson, (10) Jeremy Keller, (11) Jeff Hinkemeyer, (12) Troy Schill, (13) Kyle Jumbeck, (14) Cody Skytland, (15) Shawn Kirwin, (16) Brad Seng, (17) Scott Greer, (18) Rick Nelson, (19) Joey Ogston, (20) Cole Schill, (21) Mike Johnson, (22) Bill Mooney, (23) Matt Weisman, (24) Mark Halverson, (25) Mike Bruns, (26) Kerry Hanson, (27) Brock Gronwold, (28) Seth Brede, (29) Joel Cryderman. Heat race winners (among 29 cars): Shaw, Wildung, Seckerson.
NLRA @ Viking (Sept. 5): (1) Zach Johnson, (2) Jeff Wildung, (3) Shawn Kirwin, (4) Joel Cryderman, (5) Ricky Weiss, (6) Mike Prochnow, (7) Brad Seng, (8) Scott Greer, (9) Cody Skytland, (10) Mike Johnson, (11) Jeremy Keller, (12) Don Shaw, (13) Kyle Jumbeck, (14) Corey Seckerson, (15) Mike Balcaen, (16) Brock Gronwold, (17) Shaun Peterson, (18) Kerry Hanson, (19) Joey Ogston, (20) Jeff Hinkemeyer, (21) Seth Brede, (22) Cole Schill, (23) Scott Atkinson, (24) Mike Bruns, (25) Mark Halverson, (26) Bill Mooney. Heat race winners (among 29 cars): Seng, Z. Johnson, Greer. Consolation winner: Brede.