13-year-old Hailee Marcx gets first win in Front Runner class
PLEASANTON -- Thirteen-year-old Hailee Marcx got her first win in the Front Runner class April 16 by holding off defending champion Nick Hencey at I-37 Raceway at Newsome Motor Park. And, as the saying goes, “the crowd went wild.”
Hailee has been getting better each race, and last weekend was easily her best run: smooth, fast, and not letting anyone intimidate her. She’ll be a factor in the points chase.
Meanwhile, Janel Hilla was involved in another history-making event at I-37, as she and husband Dennis, both won their heat races -- Dennis in Street Stock, and Janel in Pure Stock -- a “first” for the track.
Greg Dinsmore may still be dominating the IMCA Modified class, but it seems to be getting tougher. Last week he battled early with Jamie Campbell, and then took several laps to run down Bill Pittaway for the lead and eventual win -- his fourth of the season.
The IMCA Southern Sports Mods saw defending champion Johnny Torres get another win, as he held off Ray Doyon, Moe VanKirk, and veterans Larry Jernigan and Randy Yount.
In the Limited Late Model class, Andrew Hesler was the man, as he held off the veterans to get his first win. Hesler finished ahead of Trey Votion, defending champ Richard Bartosh, and Craig Crawley.
The Street Stocks are growing, and this week the two A.J.s -- Dancer and Wernette -- bracketed defending champ Wade Jones of Jourdanton. Wernette actually led for the first half of the race until Dancer got by in his El Camino to take the lead. They would finish in that order, with Dennis Hilla fourth and Tommy Casey fifth.
The usual herd of Pure Stocks, 19 strong, showed up, and Patricia Lucas joined in to make a total of three women in the class. Frank Okruhlik got the win. Janel Hilla took a wild ride through the infield early, but came back strong to finish third behind Justin Henley.
Four women started the Front Runner race, which is at about a dozen cars and growing. Hailee Marcx raced with Nick Hencey for most of the time, and held him off during several late-race cautions.
The Dwarf Car Racing Series of Texas brought 15 cars and put on their usual wild show. Billy Groff got the early lead, but it was Rusty Young who got the win. Young held off Arden Vikre, who won titles in 2007, 2008, and 2010.
The cars took a break this past weekend, as the motorcycles of the Vintage Dirt Track Racing Association took over. Things will return to normal this Saturday, April 30, though, with spectator gates opening at 5 p.m.