Veteran Late Model racer Pat Doar led from start to finish to win the Structural Buildings WISSOTA Late Model Challenge Series event presented by Swant Graber Motors Saturday night at the Rice Lake Speedway.
Doar, from New Richmond, drew the lucky Frisbee that gave him the inside pole and he took advantage of that preferred starting spot, taking the early lead over Jimmy Mars and Darrell Nelson and the rest of the 24-car starting field. While Doar moved off by several car lengths over the field in the early going, the best battle was for third where Nelson and James Giossi raced hard for that spot, trading the position back and forth as Kevin Eder nipped at their rear tires.
The first yellow waved with nine laps complete when Dave Mass, racing in the top 10, lost a wheel and came to a halt in turn one with Aaron Wilson running into the tire as it bounced around the track. Mass left on the wrecker with Wilson able to continue.
Doar continued to show the way with Mars looking to his inside on occasion hoping for a hole to develop or for Doar to make a mistake. Doar did have to navigate through some lapped traffic and things did get a bit dicey at times, but each time Mars thought he had a chance, Doar held him off and moved out by a few car lengths. Giossi got past Nelson for third and the top five settled in at this point.
Three laps past the halfway point, Wilson spun in turn four, triggering the second and final yellow of the race. On the restart, Doar again reasserted his advantage while Mars continued to dog his every move. Chad Mahder got an excellent restart and he moved past Eder to take over the fifth spot in the running order.
From then on, the top five remained unchanged for the duration of the 40-lap feature, which remained under the green the last 17 laps. Doar again came up upon a slower car during the last 10 laps but he masterfully maneuvered so that he wouldn't have to try to overtake that car while protecting his lead, as Mars had fallen back just a bit and was fighting hard to keep Giossi behind him.
At the checkered, Doar took the win by about eight car lengths over Mars with Giossi close behind. Nelson and Mahder would complete the top five as 19 of the starting field were still on the track at the finish with all still on the lead lap. Doar's win was his second Late Model victory in the last two years, having won the Trackside Collectibles 40 here in 2020.
Heat winners for the 26-car field included Steve Laursen, Mahder and Doar. The Late Models will return to the Rice Lake Speedway one more time in 2021. The Structural Buildings WISSOTA Challenge Series will return to the track July 31 as the third night of a three race swing for the series that will feature the Tanner Byholm Memorial on Thursday night at the ABC Raceway in Ashland, the Twin Ports Twin 25's at the Gondik Law Speedway in Superior on Friday night and wrap up the weekend at Rice Lake for the Swant Graber 40.
Results, May 29
WISSOTA LATE MODEL
Structural Buildings A Feature 1 (40 Laps): 1. 11-Pat Doar; 2. 28M-Jimmy Mars; 3. 11G-James Giossi; 4. 44-Darrell Nelson; 5. 55C-Chad Mahder; 6. 22E-Kevin Eder; 7. 519-Steve Laursen; 8. 27-Jake Redetzke; 9. 85-John Kaanta; 10. 11N-Denver Nickeson; 11. 31-Travis Budisalovich; 12. 6M-Jeffrey Massingill; 13. 22P-Nick Panitzke; 14. 28-Sam Mars; 15. 68-Mike Prochnow; 16. 24M-Cody Martin; 17. 92-Aaron Wilson; 18. 95-Shawn Carlson; 19. 89-Scott Meeds; 20. (DNF) 71JR-Buddy Hanestad; 21. (DNF) 1 2-Bryce Sward; 22. (DNF) 58-AJ Diemel; 23. (DNF) 12-Chad Becker; 24. (DNF) 2-Dave Mass; 25. (DNS) 51-Randy Gullixson; 26. (DNS) 22-Sam Motzer
Joe Provo Racewear Heat 1 (12 Laps): 1. 519-Steve Laursen; 2. 28M-Jimmy Mars; 3. 11N-Denver Nickeson; 4. 71JR-Buddy Hanestad; 5. 85-John Kaanta; 6. 58-AJ Diemel; 7. 28-Sam Mars; 8. 1 2-Bryce Sward; 9. (DNS) 22-Sam Motzer
Dirt Track Supply Heat 2 (12 Laps): 1. 55C-Chad Mahder; 2. 44-Darrell Nelson; 3. 27-Jake Redetzke; 4. 22E-Kevin Eder; 5. 92-Aaron Wilson; 6. 22P-Nick Panitzke; 7. 95-Shawn Carlson; 8. (DNF) 51-Randy Gullixson; 9. (DNF) 89-Scott Meeds
Best Western Hotel Resorts Heat 3 (12 Laps): 1. 11-Pat Doar; 2. 11G-James Giossi; 3. 2-Dave Mass; 4. 12-Chad Becker; 5. 31-Travis Budisalovich; 6. 6M-Jeffrey Massingill; 7. 68-Mike Prochnow; 8. 24M-Cody Martin