By Dave Noelke
(West Salem, WI) Another chapter is closed and sent to archives for NASCAR Whelen All-American Series weekly racing at LaCrosse Fairgrounds Speedway. The drivers and teams of the Speedway last season were honored Friday evening at the 24th annual Awards Ceremony.
Over 100 awards were handed out at the sold-out event, held at Onalaska’s Stoney Creek Inn Conference Center on a frigid January night.
Featured at the banquet was the crowning of the 2010 track champions: Shawn Pfaff in the Kwik Trip NASCAR Late Models, Rick Schermerhorn in the North Country Contractors Sportsmen, United Auto Supply Thunderstox Champion Adam Moore, Window World Hornet Champion Jack Litsheim, and RAYS champion John Olson. This was Pfaff’s second Late Model title, seventeen years after his first in 1993. The rest of the champions took to the stage as first time divisional winners.
The evening began by recognizing the tenth through fourth place drivers in the Thunderstox, Sportsmen and Late Model divisions. A brief 2010 season review video produced by KQEG TV-23 was shown to the guests. Co-emcee and track announcer Dan Deicher announced he will be hosting a weekly television racing show this season starting in March on KQEG TV.
Late Model Drivers participating in 50% or more features last season in attendance were eligible to win a $500 certificate towards any purchase at Five Star Race Car Bodies. In a random draw, drivers were eliminated from the award as their spouse or girlfriend lined up and picked a beverage can at random, with a driver’s car number at the bottom. Last man standing was Kyle Peters, and he was awarded the certificate.
Dinner was served by C&C Catering of Sparta, a supporter of many race teams at the Speedway. The awards ceremony began immediately after dinner, and honored the top three in each division, many of the annual voted-on awards, and several new awards as well.
Memorable comments included newcomer Bill Martin in Sportsmen, when he won the Sportsmen “Surprise of the Year” award. Martin commented that he’d “put a car over the wall, won a dash, won a feature, finished last, and destroyed someone else’s race car,” concluding that he’d pretty much “done it all” in one year. In another surprise, he then announced his retirement from racing.
The humor continued when Late Model driver Jes Tenner took to the podium in winning the Good Luck Award for next season. Tenner noted that “ordering Tenner Racing Boxer Shorts” was probably not the best idea to try and win the Best Appearing Race Team award.
The evening’s festivities concluded with the annual Sportsman of the Year Award. Area Church Pastor Andy Buhrow, the Speedway’s official Pastor was awarded the top honor of the evening. His dedication to auto racing, the speedway, and its race teams exhibited the spirit hands down that this prestigious award is designated for.
The 2011 NASCAR Whelen All-American Season is scheduled to begin on Saturday, April 23rd, featuring the Kwik Trip NASCAR Late Models, North Country Contractors Sportsmen, and United Auto Supply Thunderstox. The season will conclude with the 42nd Annual Oktoberfest Race Weekend, October 6th-9th. For more information about the LaCrosse Fairgrounds Speedway, please call the speedway office at 608-786-1525, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.lacrossespeedway.com.
2010 LaCrosse Fairgrounds Speedway Award Recipients:
Kwik Trip NASCAR Late Model Champion: Shawn Pfaff, North Country Contractors Sportsmen Champion: Rick Schermerhorn, United Auto Supply Thunderstox Champion: Adam Moore, Window World Hornet Champion: Jack Litsheim, RAYS Champion: John Olson, Budweiser Dash Champions: Todd Korish (Late Model), Greg Scheck (Sportsmen), Jason Bolster (Thunderstox); Novelty Event Champion: Brad Warthan
Rookie of the Year: Thunderstox – Dustin Bagstad, Sportsmen – Brian Hesselberg, Late Model – Troy Rave;
Best Appearing Car Award (Fan Balloting): Hornet – Nate Towner, Thunderstox – Brad Warthan, Sportsmen – Jamie Dummer, Late Model – Jerimy Wagner;
Best Appearing Car Award (Race Team Balloting): RAYS – John Olson, Hornet – Ron Amann, Thunderstox -Dustin Bagstad, Sportsmen – Jason Dummer, Late Model – Matt Henderson;
Tough Man Award: Thunderstox-Adam Moore, Sportsmen-Rick Schermerhorn, Late Model – Brent Kirchner;
Best Victory Lane Celebration: Thunderstox -Adam Moore, Sportsmen-Jamie Dumer, Late Model-Mike Koeneke;
NASCAR Craftsman Mechanic of the Year – Ed Gunther;
Outstanding Performance Award: Thunderstox – Dustin Bagstad, Sportsmen – Jerrod Loging, Late Model – J. Herbst;
Extra Lap Award: Thunderstox – Brad Warthan, Sportsmen – Jerrod Loging, Late Model – Bill Niles;
Showmanship Award: Thunderstox -Jason Bolster, Sportsmen – Nick Clements, Late Model- Troy Rave;
Biggest Surprise of the Season – Thunderstox – Jesse Vian, Sportsmen – Bill Martin, Late Model – Bill Niles
Outback Steakhouse Halfway Champion – Steve Carlson;
Fan Club Award – Thunderstox – Moore Racing, Sportsmen – Dummer Racing, Late Model – Durango Racing (Shawn Pfaff);
Competition Achievement awards: Steve Owen, Rick Babcock, Harley Jankowski, Jeff Baker;
Most Improved Driver: Thunderstox – Nathan White, Sportsmen – Jonathan Eckelberg, Late Model – Shawn Pfaff;
Best Appearing Race Team: Thunderstox – Nathan White, Sportsmen – Nick Clements, Late Model – Blackjack Racing (Troy Rave);
Special Recognition Award: Toby Nuttleman;
Hard Charger Award: Thunderstox – Josh Inglett, Sportsmen – Greg Scheck, Late Model – Todd Korish;
Good Luck Award: Thunderstox – Danielle Neary, Sportsmen – Steve Owen, Late Model – Jes Tenner;
Most Popular Driver Award (Fan Balloting): Hornet – Kim Strom, Thunderstox – Danielle Neary, Sportsmen – Branden Berg, Late Model – Bill Niles;
Sharing Award: Thunderstox – Josh Inglett, Sportsmen – Nick Clements, Late Model -Todd Korish;
2010 Sportsman of the Year: Pastor Andy Buhrow