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saturday december 18th

 

tWO YEAR ABSENCE DOESN’T STOP STEWART FROM A RETURN TO VICTORY LANE

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Dec. 18, 2021) – Even after two years, Saturday’s finale to the 23rd Rumble in Fort Wayne presented by Jason Dietsch Trailer Sales was a reminder that some things just never change.

All-time Rumble wins leader Tony Stewart picked up his record-extending 12th national midget feature victory inside the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum with a rout of the field, taking the famed Our Gang Poker No. 2 Munchkin to a half-track victory in a caution-free 50-lap main event.

The midget feature went from green to checkered in a scant six minutes and 53 seconds.

Stewart started third, but moved to the runner-up spot behind polesitter Travis Welpott on the initial start. From there, he laid in wait until Welpott slipped off the bottom of the track at the start of lap four, powering to the inside and never looking back after that.

Stewart then drove away and carved his way effortlessly through slower traffic during the latter stages of the race. His official margin of victory at the checkered flag was 3.947 seconds.

“After how things ended last night, we wanted to come back here and prove what we’re capable of,” Stewart said. “I’d say that run did that. With the way Travis [Welpott] ran in the opener, I was a little nervous about whether we’d be able to get past him or not, but when he started slipping, I knew we had a chance.

“Sam McGhee [crew chief] has basically lived at my shop the last month getting these cars ready; I think I can about claim him as a dependent on my taxes,” the three-time NASCAR Cup Series champion added with a hearty laugh. “He’s put in so much effort with the rest of this team and I’m glad we could reward them tonight.”

Rumble rookie Jack Macenko, who qualified for both features during his maiden showing at the indoor racing classic, held down second place for the majority of the second half after a stellar move to the outside that allowed him to dispatch Welpott.

Though Macenko couldn’t catch Stewart, he was still all smiles after what many considered to be a career-defining weekend for the high school senior and Kenyon Midget Series regular.

“I can’t believe this,” Macenko admitted. “We came in here just wanting to make a feature and to have a car like that … I’m so proud of this team. It’s incredible and it’s a huge boost for us going into next season.”

Friday runner-up Billy Wease completed the Saturday podium ahead of Trey Osborne and Joey Payne, another Rumble rookie who made both midget features during the weekend.

Stewart kicked off the night by setting fast time for the 16th time in his Rumble career, with a lap of 7.508 seconds around the temporary, seventh-mile concrete-and-pop syrup oval.

Macenko, Russ Gamester, Ryan Flores and Wease won their respective heat races. Derek Bischak and Payne split the B-main wins.

Saturday’s 600cc micro features were just as entertaining as their Friday counterparts, with two new winners starring at the end of those 25-lap contests.

Tyler Shullick held off his car owner, Rumble micro kingpin John Ivy, for the win in the winged 600cc micro feature after a wild affair during which late leader Cap Henry was relegated to the tail of the field with three laps to go after contact with a spinning lapped car led to a soft right-front tire.

Shullick inherited the top spot with three laps left and then out-raced Ivy for the win by .748 seconds. Chase Ridenour, Tylar Rankin, Kelsey Ivy and Ryan Ball closed the top six.

Shullick also set the all-time Rumble in Fort Wayne track record during winged 600cc micro qualifying earlier in the day. His lap of 7.255 seconds shattered the previous mark of 7.323 seconds, set by Tony Stewart in a midget during the 2005 edition of the Rumble.

The non-winged 600cc micro feature featured contact for the lead inside of five laps to go, after race-long dominator Justin Harper slowed off turn two and was hit by then runner-up Tyler Gunn.

Harper couldn’t continue once the caution flag waved, while Gunn was able to keep rolling and then led the final four laps for his first career Rumble micro victory.

Dillon Nusbaum finished second in non-winged action, followed by Brian Busz, Michael Busz and Grant Valkner.

Shawn Kluck headlined the list of go-kart feature winners on Saturday by becoming the fourth different winner in four runnings of the $2,000-to-win John Limbacher Memorial Race for the Clone 360 class.

Kluck held off a mid-race challenge from 2018 race winner Dustin Heath and led the final eight laps of the 20-lap feature. Heath ended as the runner-up finisher.

Other go-kart winners Saturday included Missy Bootes (Senior Caged), Parker Moyer (Junior Caged), Travis Fisher (Clone 400), Jakeb Boxell (Clone 330), Carson Mason (Junior 3), Evan Verduin (Wedge Kart), Kaden Sexton (WRA Wedge) and Daulton Soningsen (Kid Kart).

Austin Kryta (Animal, Heavy 160, Heavy 120) picked up three more quarter midget victories Saturday to push his weekend total to five wins in eight races overall between go-karts and quarter midgets.

Kedryn Evenson (Senior Honda, Light 160) won in two quarter midget classes Saturday, while Cam Lindsay completed the weekend sweep in the Junior Honda quarter midget division.

Evenson was selected as the SPEED SPORT One/Pit Row TV Rising Star of the Rumble, collecting a $200 bonus, while brothers Mel and Don Kenyon received the event’s highest honor, the David Lesiecki Award for Dedication to Auto Racing.

Every lap from both days of the 23rd Rumble in Fort Wayne is available for on-demand replay through SPEED SPORT Network affiliate Pit Row TV, which broadcast the event live to a worldwide audience for the first time in its history.

Viewers from more than 40 states and several Canadian provinces tuned in over the course of the two-day spectacle to take in the action.

The 24th renewal of the Rumble in Fort Wayne is slated for Dec. 30-31, 2022.

23rd Rumble in Fort Wayne presented by Jason Dietsch Trailer Sales; Allen County War Memorial Coliseum; Fort Wayne, Ind.; Dec. 18, 2021

National Midget Qualifying (group aggregate): 1. 2-Tony Stewart, 7.508; 2. 8up-Joe Liguori, 7.606; 3. 59-Bryan Nuckles, 7.618; 4. 18-Travis Welpott, 7.619; 5. 24-Shawn Bonar, 7.630; 6. 31-Derek Bischak, 7.660; 7. 97-Mike Fedorcak, 7.692; 8. 2.5-Joey Payne, 7.698; 9. 24m-Jack Macenko, 7.712; 10. 46-Russ Gamester, 7.740; 11. 98-Ryan Flores, 7.746; 12. 99w-Billy Wease, 7.763; 13. 6k-Trey Osborne, 7.811; 14. 19-Austin Nemire, 7.819; 15. 16-Nick Hamilton, 7.823; 16. 49-Tim Creech, 7.868; 17. 9s-Charlie Schultz, 7.871; 18. 4b-Scott Koerner, 7.925; 19. 1x-Ryan Moran, 7.964; 20. 33-Jordan Caskey, 7.987; 21. 61-Jeff Champagne, 7.991; 22. 99-Brandon Knupp, 7.997; 23. 75-Ayrton Houk, 8.020; 24. 72-Cody Gallogly, 8.024; 25. 45-Daryl Campbell, 8.057; 26. 10k-Christian Koehler, 8.122; 27. 53-Justin Harper, 8.129; 28. 14-Keith Ousley, 8.353; 29. 6-Chris Malaterre, 8.712.

National Midget Heat Race #1 (10 laps, top two transfer): 1. Jack Macenko [1], 2. Tony Stewart [3] / 3. Charlie Schultz [5], 4. Trey Osborne [4], 5. Shawn Bonar [2], 6. Daryl Campbell [7], 7. Jeff Champagne [6], 8. Chris Malaterre [8].

National Midget Heat Race #2 (10 laps, top two transfer): 1. Russ Gamester [1], 2. Austin Nemire [4] / 3. Derek Bischak [2], 4. Brandon Knupp [6], 5. Scott Koerner [5], 6. Christian Koehler [7], 7. Joe Liguori [3].

National Midget Heat Race #3 (10 laps, top two transfer): 1. Ryan Flores [1], 2. Bryan Nuckles [3] / 3. Mike Fedorcak [2], 4. Nick Hamilton [4], 5. Ryan Moran [5], 6. Ayrton Houk [6], 7. Justin Harper [7].

National Midget Heat Race #4 (10 laps, top two transfer): 1. Billy Wease [1], 2. Travis Welpott [3] / 3. Joey Payne [2], 4. Tim Creech [4], 5. Cody Gallogly [6], 6. Jordan Caskey [5], 7. Keith Ousley [7].

National Midget Last Chance Showdown #1 (12 laps, top three transfer): 1. Derek Bischak [2], 2. Trey Osborne [3], 3. Joe Liguori [10] / 4. Jeff Champagne [9], 5. Brandon Knupp [4], 6. Christian Koehler [8], 7. Daryl Campbell [7], 8. Charlie Schultz [1], 9. Chris Malaterre [11], 10. Scott Koerner [6], 11. Shawn Bonar [5].

National Midget Last Chance Showdown #2 (10 laps, top three transfer): 1. Joey Payne [2], 2. Mike Fedorcak [1], 3. Nick Hamilton [3] / 4. Ayrton Houk [7], 5. Justin Harper [9], 6. Jordan Caskey [8], 7. Keith Ousley [10], 8. Cody Gallogly [6], 9. Tim Creech [4], 10. Ryan Moran [5].

National Midget A-Feature (50 laps): 1. 2-Tony Stewart [3], 2. 24m-Jack Macenko [4], 3. 99w-Billy Wease [7], 4. 6k-Trey Osborne [11], 5. 2.5-Joey Payne [10], 6. 59-Bryan Nuckles [2], 7. 31-Derek Bischak [9], 8. 16-Nick Hamilton [14], 9. 19-Austin Nemire [8], 10. 98-Ryan Flores [6], 11. 8up-Joe Liguori [13], 12. 97-Mike Fedorcak [12], 13. 46-Russ Gamester [5], 14. 18-Travis Welpott [1].

Lap Leader(s): Welpott 1-3, Stewart 4-50.

Hard Charger: #6k – Trey Osborne (+7)

Winged 600cc Micro Qualifying (group aggregate): 1. 40-Tyler Shullick, 7.255 (all-time track record); 2. 94-John Ivy, 7.398; 3. 17-Cap Henry, 7.420; 4. 44-Blake Adams, 7.743; 5. 87-Nate Franklin, 7.743; 6. 01-Chase Ridenour, 7.787; 7. 21-Clay Sanders, 7.804; 8. 3w-Dylan Woodling, 7.840; 9. 29i-Kelsey Ivy, 7.860; 10. 11b-Drew Dorsett, 7.870; 11. 5-Brian Busz, 7.888; 12. 08-Cory Grenzy, 7.910; 13. 26-Howard McCormick, 7.924; 14. 39-Tylar Rankin, 8.020; 15. 10r-Ryan Ball, 8.036; 16. 84-Bill Dunham, 8.109; 17. 51-Jason Ormsby, 8.112; 18. 18-Cody Tyler, 8.144; 19. 21h-Michael Higdon, 8.209; 20. 12-Chris Malaterre II, 8.307; 21. 69-Blake Lamb, NT; 22. 79-Nick Lucas, NT; 23. 62-Rod Henning, NT.

Winged 600cc Micro Heat Race #1 (8 laps, top four transfer): 1. Clay Sanders [2], 2. Drew Dorsett [1], 3. Tyler Shullick [4], 4. Blake Adams [3] / 5. Howard McCormick [5], 6. Bill Dunham [6], 7. Michael Higdon [7].

Winged 600cc Micro Heat Race #2 (8 laps, top four transfer): 1. Brian Busz [1], 2. John Ivy [4], 3. Nate Franklin [3], 4. Dylan Woodling [2] / 5. Tylar Rankin [5], 6. Chris Malaterre II [6], 7. Jason Ormsby (DNS).

Winged 600cc Micro Heat Race #3 (8 laps, top four transfer): 1. Cap Henry [4], 2. Chase Ridenour [3], 3. Cory Grenzy [1], 4. Kelsey Ivy [2] / 5. Ryan Ball [5], 6. Cody Tyler [6].

Winged 600cc Micro B-Main (10 laps, top four transfer): 1. Howard McCormick [1], 2. Ryan Ball [3], 3. Cody Tyler [6], 4. Tylar Rankin [2] / 5. Chris Malaterre [7], 6. Michael Higdon [5], 7. Bill Dunham [4].

Winged 600cc Micro Feature (30 laps): 1. 40-Tyler Shullick [8], 2. 94-John Ivy [7], 3. 01-Chase Ridenour [3], 4. 39-Tylar Rankin [16], 5. 29i-Kelsey Ivy [9], 6. 10r-Ryan Ball [14], 7. 17-Cap Henry [6], 8. 08-Cory Grenzy [12], 9. 26-Howard McCormick [13], 10. 11b-Drew Dorsett [10], 11. 3w-Dylan Woodling [1], 12. 18-Cody Tyler [15], 13. 5-Brian Busz [11], 14. 87-Nate Franklin [4], 15. 21-Clay Sanders [2], 16. 44-Blake Adams [5].

Lap Leader(s): Woodling 1-5, Shullick 6-15, Henry 16-22, Shullick 23-25.

Hard Charger: #39 – Tylar Rankin (+12)

Non-Winged 600cc Micro Qualifying (group aggregate): 1. 20i-John Ivy, 7.952; 2. 51-Jason Ormsby, 7.986; 3. 68g-Tyler Gunn, 8.009; 4. 2-Dustin Ingle, 8.017; 5. 46-Tyler Lindsay, 8.059; 6. 16-Grant Valkner, 8.072; 7. 12c-Blane Culp, 8.088; 8. 53-Justin Harper, 8.102; 9. 75b-Brian Busz, 8.106; 10. 9m-Jonathan Reid, 8.119; 11. 21s-Larry Joe Sroufe, 8.125; 12. 73b-Brent Busz, 8.149; 13. 17n-Dillon Nusbaum, 8.209; 14. 12k-Sam Kimmel, 8.240; 15. 15-Andy Hall, 8.242; 16. 69-Blake Lamb, 8.337; 17. 57b-Michael Busz, 8.404; 18. 48-Bobby Murany, 8.486; 19. 777-Ben Long, 8.520; 20. 21L-Brenton Lamb, 8.531; 21. 8-Tony Jones, 9.012; 22. Brandon Yeiter, NT.

Non-Winged 600cc Micro Heat Race #1 (8 laps, top four transfer): 1. Dustin Ingle [1], 2. Blane Culp [2], 3. Dillon Nusbaum [3], 4. John Ivy [4] / 5. Blake Lamb [6], 6. Ben Long [5], 7. Jonathan Reid (DNS).

Non-Winged 600cc Micro Heat Race #2 (8 laps, top four transfer): 1. Larry Joe Sroufe [1], 2. Justin Harper [2], 3. Tyler Lindsay [3], 4. Jason Ormsby [4] / 5. Michael Busz [6], 6. Sam Kimmel [5], 7. Brenton Lamb (DNS).

Non-Winged 600cc Micro Heat Race #3 (8 laps, top four transfer): 1. Brent Busz [1], 2. Brian Busz [2], 3. Grant Valkner [3], 4. Tyler Gunn [4] / 5. Andy Hall [5], 6. Bobby Murany [6], 7. Tony Jones (DNS).

Non-Winged 600cc Micro B-Main (10 laps, top four transfer): 1. Blake Lamb [1], 2. Michael Busz [2], 3. Andy Hall [3], 4. Sam Kimmel [5] / 5. Bobby Murany [6], 6. Ben Long [4].

Non-Winged 600cc Micro Feature (25 laps): 1. 68g-Tyler Gunn [8], 2. 17n-Dillon Nusbaum [6], 3. 75b-Brian Busz [9], 4. 57b-Michael Busz [12], 5. 16-Grant Valkner [3], 6. 12k-Sam Kimmel [14], 7. 12-Blane Culp [2], 8. 46-Tyler Lindsay [4], 9. 15-Andy Hall [15], 10. 73b-Brent Busz [11], 11. 21s-Larry Joe Sroufe [10], 12. 51-Jason Ormsby [7], 13. 53-Justin Harper [1], 14. 69-Blake Lamb [13], 15. 20i-John Ivy [16], 16. 2-Dustin Ingle [5].

Lap Leader(s): Harper 1-21, Gunn 22-25.

Hard Charger: #57b – Michael Busz (+8)

Senior Caged Go-Kart Feature (15 laps): 1. Missy Bootes, 2. Dylan Woodling, 3. Ryan Moran, 4. Kevin Wall Jr., 5. Seumus Calderwood, 6. Jeremy Howe, 7. Jim Focht, 8. Brooke Ramey, 9. Jeremy Smith, 10. Bill Warner.

Junior Caged Go-Kart Feature (15 laps): 1. Parker Moyer, 2. Tristan Chamberlain, 3. Oliver Osborn, 4. Aiden Forster, 5. Colton Rychener, 6. Macy Staton, 7. Alex Geren, 8. Kalib Richardson, 9. Annalena Wells, 10. Dylan Trost, 11. Carson Mason (DNS).

Clone 360 John Limbacher Memorial (20 laps): 1. Shawn Kluck [$2,000], 2. Dustin Heath, 3. Doug Stearly, 4. Joey Pendergrass, 5. Alex Smolders, 6. RJ Cornett, 7. Josh McKnight, 8. Kevin Wall Jr., 9. Jakeb Boxell, 10. Larry Kingseed Jr., 11. Grant Kanfield, 12. Damon Woodbury, 13. Jake Dukeshire, 14. Philip Schneider.

Lap Leader(s): McKnight 1, Kluck 2-11, Heath 12, Kluck 13-20

Clone 400 Go-Kart Feature (15 laps): 1. Travis Fisher, 2. Erik Wolleson, 3. Justin Clark, 4. JoJo Warner, 5. Zach Myers, 6. Cory Mills, 7. Charlie Schultz, 8. Chris Frank, 9. Seumus Calderwood, 10. Kyle Watson, 11. Blake Smith, 12. Derek Hammond, 13. Jeff Funk, 14. Andrea Weaver.

Clone 330 Go-Kart Feature (15 laps): 1. Jakeb Boxell, 2. Dustin Heath, 3. Shawn Kluck, 4. Josh McKnight, 5. Damon Woodbury, 6. Joey Pendergrass, 7. Doug Stearly, 8. Kevin Wall Jr., 9. Steven Dombrowski, 10. Jonathan Rangel, 11. Alex Smolders, 12. Philip Schneider, 13. Quentin White, 14. Larry Kingseed Jr.

Junior 3 Go-Kart Feature (15 laps): 1. Carson Mason, 2. Landen Francis, 3. Blayne Keckler, 4. Tristan Chamberlain, 5. Charlie Baur, 6. Andrew Bogusz, 7. Travis Whittal, 8. Kalib Richardson, 9. Jaxon Kilpatrick, 10. Colton Coe (DNS), 11. Austin Kryta (DNS).

Wedge Go-Kart Feature (15 laps): 1. Evan Verduin, 2. Elijah Haughee, 3. Addison Pressler, 4. Mason Lowe, 5. Brycen Schrock, 6. Samantha Banta, 7. Addy Wade, 8. Landyn Neitling, 9. Cruz Everage, 10. AJ White, 11. Tristan Ray Blair, 12. Ella Terry, 13. Colton Gill, 14. Madison Zelmer.

WRA Wedge Go-Kart Feature (15 laps): 1. Kaden Sexton, 2. Maddy Dodd, 3. Kamdin Bryan.

Kid Kart Feature (10 laps): 1. Daulton Sonningsen, 2. Luke Hessel, 3. Reed Hicks, 4. Kear Mills, 5. Trax Wolff, 6. Keilan Calderwood, 7. Colter Ballenbacher, 8. Tigh Shaffer, 9. Cole Staton.

Animal Combined QM Feature (12 laps): 1. Austin Kryta, 2. Kamden Hibbitt, 3. Nolan Mitchell, 4. Kedryn Evenson, 5. Andrew White, 6. David Carter Jr., 7. Taylor Gruss, 8. Matthew Weaver, 9. Johnny Bishop, 10. Austin Geer, 11. Caleb Edington.

Senior Honda QM Feature (12 laps): 1. Kedryn Evenson, 2. Nolan Mitchell, 3. Matthew Dennany, 4. Jaden Tharp, 5. Dylan Regnerus, 6. Lukas Waber, 7. Memarie Ashcraft, 8. Phillip Clement Jr., 9. Isaiah Higdon, 10. Ethan Geer, 11. Cohen Ellet, 12. Connor Hoag.

Junior Honda QM Feature (12 laps): 1. Cam Lindsay, 2. Kadence Hibbitt, 3. Austin Keehn, 4. McDenna Kren, 5. JD Kimmel, 6. Jimmy High III, 7. Jaxson Ridenour, 8. Hunter Collins.

Heavy 160 QM Feature (12 laps): 1. Austin Kryta, 2. Alexis Regnerus, 3. Austin Geer, 4. Matthew Weaver, 5. Andrew White, 6. Taylor Gruss, 7. Mason Damman, 8. Caleb Edington (DNS).

Heavy 120 QM Feature (12 laps): 1. Austin Kryta, 2. Kaleb McCloskey, 3. Caleb Edington (DNS).

Light 160 QM Feature (12 laps): 1. Kedryn Evenson, 2. Kamden Hibbitt, 3. Chase Conrad, 4. JD Kimmel, 5. Lukas Waber, 6. Jaden Tharp, 7. Memarie Ashcraft.

David Lesiecki Award: Mel and Don Kenyon

Quarter Midget Rising Star: Kedryn Evenson 

 

friday december 17th

 

FRIDAY’S RUMBLE OPENING NIGHT DWELLS ON DÉJÀ VU

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – Friday night’s opening act to the 23rd Rumble in Fort Wayne presented by Jason Dietsch Trailer Sales had all the makings of an instant classic.

From top to bottom, the entertainment level was electric inside the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum, headlined by a wild national midget feature which saw Peru, Ind., veteran Russ Gamester reach victory lane for the fifth time in his Rumble career.

Gamester defended his longstanding nickname of “Mr. Friday Night” by winning the 50-lap headliner after a late pass of Travis Welpott, who was seeking his first career Rumble win and appeared to have the race well in hand for much of the event.

The main began with three-time Rumble winner Justin Peck on the pole of the 14-car field, and Peck led the opening lap before a souring engine dropped him quickly out of contention for any shot at the victory. Welpott took control of the race for the first time on lap two and quickly brought both Billy Wease and Gamester along with him into the early podium positions.

A lap-four caution for Charlie Schultz, who had a right-rear tire come off the rim in turn four, bunched the field back up but did nothing to stall Welpott’s roll. The driver of the No. 18 Ernie Gorman Racing Munchkin surged back to the point on the ensuing restart and comfortably held the spot before entering traffic on lap 16.

Though Wease and Gamester closed to Welpott’s back bumper, the threat of traffic was eliminated for a brief period by a lap-21 yellow flag, necessitated when Brandon Knupp spun on his own in turn one.

Wease began applying heavy pressure to Welpott’s rear nerf bar after that, with the lap-22 restart being the first time the leader looked vulnerable all night long. Welpott held serve, however, and Gamester began his charge by moving past Wease into second place on the 24th time around the temporary seventh-mile concrete oval.

As the race moved into its second half, Welpott led Gamester, Wease, Derek Bischak and feature rookie Trey Osborne, with that order holding steady through a caution flag with 19 laps left when Joey Payne looped the Tony Stewart Racing “Deuce and a Half” in turn four.

The next restart saw the night’s only red-flag stoppage of the feature, after Knupp and Joe Liguori crashed off the second corner, leading to a quick repair of the safety barriers.

Welpott scooted away when the race resumed for the final time, but disaster struck seven laps later, when a broken u-joint exiting turn four forced him to limp to the infield and scuttled his hopes at a landmark victory.

“It’s heartbreaking,” Welpott said later. “We had the car to beat; I really believe that. But sometimes in here, it’s about having a little luck and we just didn’t quite have that to the end tonight.”

Gamester took over the race lead at that point and, despite rising temperatures aboard his No. 46 Grant King-built midget over the final 12 laps, held off a determined Wease to notch the victory.

All five of Gamester’s Rumble wins have come during the opening night of the weekend. His fifth win ties him with Wease for second in national midget wins at the Rumble in Fort Wayne, behind Tony Stewart’s event-leading 11 checkered flags.

“I want to thank all the fans that support the Rumble; it takes everyone coming out here so that we can do our thing,” said an emotional Gamester in victory lane. “It’s special to win here again. It really is. This is my grandmother and grandfather’s car. They’ve passed on now … but the tradition goes on.

“It means a lot to me.”

Gamester tipped that Welpott had him beat before the issue that ended his night, noting that he wouldn’t have been able to mount a serious challenge due to the rising engine temperatures aboard his race car down the closing stretch.

“I’ll be honest; Travis had us covered,” said Gamester. “I got into him there when he had his issue, but this thing was running about 240 or 250 (degrees) at the end. It was so hot that I didn’t think it was going to make it. I knew Wease was working on me at the end. I’ve run a lot of these races, though, and I just knew not to get loose at the end and give him a chance.”

Wease finished as the runner-up, marking his eight career podium finish in Rumble action, followed by Bischak, Ligouri and Bryan Nuckles.

Event debutant Jack Macenko, a graduate of the Mel Kenyon Midget Series, was Friday’s rookie of the race after a stellar effort to make the field in his first Rumble appearance. He finished seventh.

Three-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Stewart – who was seeking his 12th Rumble victory – saw his perfect record of making the feature field snapped when he tagged an infield tire in turn one during his B-main Friday night. The contact broke the right-front suspension on Stewart’s black No. 2 Munchkin and relegated him to the role of spectator for the first time in 22 Rumble attempts.

Stewart was the fast qualifier for the night, however, with a lap of 7.616 seconds in group qualifying.

Friday’s 600cc micro features featured plenty of action in their own rights as well, with both the winged and non-winged divisions going down to the wire and ending with surprise victors in the winner’s circle.

Gamester followed his national midget win as a driver with a non-winged 600cc micro win as a car owner, after Justin Harper snuck past Brian Busz coming to the white flag in traffic for his first Rumble micro score.

The 25-lap feature saw four lead changes among four drivers, but Harper’s late move proved to be the winning one. Sixteen-year-old Grant Valkner crossed the finish line second, ahead of Busz, polesitter Tyler Gunn and past winner Blane Culp.

The winged 600cc micro main was even more hotly contested at the finish, as Cap Henry made a last-lap, last-corner pass of his car owner John Ivy for an impressive win that avenged a tough night in the national midget class for the Ohio sprint car ace.

Ivy, who led laps 13 through 24 in the winged event, crossed second and saw his streak of four straight micro wins at the Rumble in Fort Wayne ended. Clay Sanders, Brian Busz and Tylar Rankin closed the top five.

In preliminary action, Phillip Schneider tied Zach Axlen and Brandon Dunn for the title of Rumble go-kart king with two victories – in the Clone 330 and Clone 360 classes – which pushed his career total to 14 Rumble wins in go-kart action. He’ll go for his record-setting 15th kart win at the Rumble on Saturday.

Other go-kart winners on night one included Dylan Trost (Junior Caged), Travis Fisher (Clone 400), Landen Francis (Junior 3), Evan Verdun (Wedge Kart), Missy Bootes (Senior Caged) and Kear Mills (Kid Karts).

Kamden Hibbitt (Light 160, Animal Combined) and Austin Kryta (Heavy 120, Heavy 160) led the way among the quarter midget feature winners with two victories apiece. Cam Lindsay (Junior Honda) and Lucas Waber (Senior Honda) were also victorious Friday night in quarter midget features.

Saturday’s action at the Rumble in Fort Wayne features another complete program for all 17 divisions in attendance, beginning at 11 a.m. ET. Just like the opening night, every lap of racing is available to watch live online for the first time ever through SPEED SPORT Network affiliate Pit Row TV.

23rd Rumble in Fort Wayne presented by Jason Dietsch Trailer Sales; Allen County War Memorial Coliseum; Fort Wayne, Ind.; Dec. 17, 2021

National Midget Qualifying (group aggregate): 1. 2-Tony Stewart, 7.616; 2. 18-Travis Welpott, 7.719; 3. 46-Russ Gamester, 7.732; 4. 44-Cap Henry, 7.738; 5. 5x-Justin Peck, 7.740; 6. 1x-Ryan Moran, 7.751; 7. 8up-Joe Liguori, 7.767; 8. 31-Derek Bischak, 7.794; 9. 99w-Billy Wease, 7.803; 10. 2.5-Joey Payne, 7.805; 11. 59-Bryan Nuckles, 7.812; 12. 97-Mike Fedorcak, 7.822; 13. 24-Shawn Bonar, 7.861; 14. 6-Trey Osborne, 7.878; 15. 99-Brandon Knupp, 7.887; 16. 16-Nick Hamilton, 7.888; 17. 9s-Charlie Schultz, 7.890; 18. 9-Matt Westfall, 7.929; 19. 24m-Jack Macenko, 7.962; 20. 98-Ryan Flores, 7.988; 21. 75-Ayrton Houk, 8.037; 22. 33-Jordan Caskey, 8.037; 23. 19-Austin Nemire, 8.048; 24. 45-Daryl Campbell, 8.054; 25. 72-Cody Gallogly, 8.056; 26. 61-Jeff Champagne, 8.069; 27. 49-Scott Hampton, 8.078; 28. 4b-Scott Koerner, 8.105; 29. 10-Christian Koehler, 8.277; 30. 5-Don Dietsch, 8.313; 31. 53-Justin Harper, 8.343; 32. 20-Matt Janisch, 8.550; 33. 14-Keith Ousley, 8.559; 34. 6m-Chris Malaterre, 8.904.

National Midget Heat Race #1 (10 laps, top two transfer): 1. Billy Wease [1], 2. Justin Peck [2] / 3. Charlie Schultz [3], 4. Cody Gallogly [5], 5. Christian Koehler [8], 6. Jordan Caskey [6], 7. Keith Ousley [7], 8. Shawn Bonar [4], 9. Tony Stewart (DNS).

National Midget Heat Race #2 (10 laps, top two transfer): 1. Joey Payne [1], 2. Travis Welpott [3] / 3. Trey Osborne [4], 4. Matt Westfall [5], 5. Jeff Champagne [7], 6. Ayrton Houk [6], 7. Justin Harper [8], 8. Ryan Moran [2], 9. Chris Malaterre [9].

National Midget Heat Race #3 (10 laps, top two transfer): 1. Bryan Nuckles [1], 2. Russ Gamester [3] / 3. Joe Liguori [2], 4. Jack Macenko [5], 5. Brandon Knupp [4], 6. Austin Nemire [6], 7. Scott Hampton [7], 8. Don Dietsch (DNS).

National Midget Heat Race #4 (10 laps, top two transfer): 1. Derek Bischak [2], 2. Mike Fedorcak [1] / 3. Nick Hamilton [4], 4. Ryan Flores [5], 5. Cap Henry [3], 6. Scott Koerner [7], 7. Daryl Campbell [6], 8. Matt Janisch (DNS).

National Midget Last Chance Showdown #1 (15 laps, top three transfer): 1. Charlie Schultz [1], 2. Trey Osborne [2], 3. Jordan Caskey [7] / 4. Justin Harper [8], 5. Ayrton Houk [6], 6. Jeff Champagne [4], 7. Shawn Bonar [9], 8. Cody Gallogly [3], 9. Keith Ousley [12], 10. Tony Stewart [11], 11. Ryan Moran [10], 12. Christian Koehler [5], 13. Matt Westfall (DNS), 14. Chris Malaterre (DNS).

National Midget Last Chance Showdown #2 (15 laps, top three transfer): 1. Joe Liguori [1], 2. Jack Macenko [3], 3. Brandon Knupp [5] / 4. Daryl Campbell [10], 5. Nick Hamilton [2], 6. Ryan Flores [4], 7. Cap Henry [6], 8. Scott Hampton [9], 9. Austin Nemire [7], 10. Scott Koerner [8], 11. Don Dietsch (DNS), 12. Matt Janisch (DNS).

National Midget A-Feature (50 laps): 1. 46-Russ Gamester [2], 2. 99-Billy Wease [5], 3. 31-Derek Bischak [4], 4. 8up-Joe Liguori [10], 5. 59-Bryan Nuckles [7], 6. 6-Trey Osborne [11], 7. 24m-Jack Macenko [12], 8. 2.5-Joey Payne [6], 9. 97-Mike Fedorcak [8], 10. 18-Travis Welpott [3], 11. 99-Brandon Knupp [14], 12. Jordan Caskey [13], 13. Justin Peck [1], 14. Charlie Schultz [9].

Lap Leader(s): Peck 1, Welpott 2-38, Gamester 39-50

Hard Charger: #8up – Joe Liguori (+6)

Winged 600cc Micro Qualifying (group aggregate): 1. 17-Cap Henry, 7.522 (NTR); 2. 40-Tyler Shullick, 7.602; 3. 94-John Ivy, 7.633; 4. 44-Blake Adams, 7.707; 5. 21-Clay Sanders, 7.880; 6. 29i-Kelsey Ivy, 7.908; 7. 5-Brian Busz, 7.954; 8. 51-Jason Ormsby, 8.006; 9. 11b-Drew Dorsett, 8.019; 10. 3w-Dylan Woodling, 8.051; 11. 18-Cody Tyler, 8.057; 12. 87-Nate Franklin, 8.069; 13. 84-Bill Dunham, 8.082; 14. 08-Cory Grenzy, 8.087; 15. 62-Rod Henning, 8.088; 16. 01-Chase Ridenour, 8.147; 17. 39-Tylar Rankin, 8.169; 18. 10r-Ryan Ball, 8.337; 19. 21-Michael Higdon, 8.450; 20. 26-Howard McCormick, 8.576; 21. 69-Blake Lamb, 8.630; 22. 79-Nick Lucas, 8.715; 23. 12-Chris Malaterre II, NT.

Winged 600cc Micro Heat Race #1 (8 laps, top four transfer): 1. Cap Henry [4], 2. Brian Busz [2], 3. Blake Adams [3], 4. Chase Ridenour [6] / 5. Dylan Woodling [1], 6. Bill Dunham [5], 7. Michael Higdon [7], 8. Nick Lucas [8].

Winged 600cc Micro Heat Race #2 (8 laps, top four transfer): 1. Cody Tyler [1], 2. Clay Sanders [3], 3. Jason Ormsby [2], 4. Tyler Shullick [4] / 5. Cory Grenzy [5], 6. Tylar Rankin [6], 7. Howard McCormick [7], 8. Rod Henning (DNS).

Winged 600cc Micro Heat Race #3 (8 laps, top four transfer): 1. Nate Franklin [1], 2. John Ivy [4], 3. Drew Dorsett [2], 4. Kelsey Ivy [3] / 5. Blake Lamb [5], 6. Ryan Ball [6], 7. Chris Malaterre II [7].

Winged 600cc Micro B-Main (10 laps, top four transfer): 1. Dylan Woodling [1], 2. Bill Dunham [2], 3. Tylar Rankin [5], 4. Ryan Ball [4] / 5. Blake Lamb [3], 6. Michael Higdon [7], 7. Chris Malaterre II [8], 8. Nick Lucas [6], 9. Cory Grenzy (DNS), 10. Howard McCormick (DNS), 11. Rod Henning (DNS).

Winged 600cc Micro Feature (30 laps): 1. 17-Cap Henry [8], 2. 94-John Ivy [6], 3. 21-Clay Sanders [4], 4. 5-Brian Busz [2], 5. 39-Tylar Rankin [15], 6. 84-Bill Dunham [14], 7. 87-Nate Franklin [11], 8. 51-Jason Ormsby [1], 9. 29i-Kelsey Ivy [3], 10. 10r-Ryan Ball [16], 11. 01-Chase Ridenour [12], 12. 3w-Dylan Woodling [13], 13. 11b-Drew Dorsett [9], 14. 18-Cody Tyler [10], 15. 44-Blake Adams [5], 16. 40-Tyler Shullick [7].

Lap Leader(s): Ormsby 1-2, K. Ivy 3, Ormsby 4-12, J. Ivy 13-24, Henry 25.

Hard Charger: #39 – Tylar Rankin (+10)

Non-Winged 600cc Micro Qualifying (group aggregate): 1. 53-Justin Harper, 8.081; 2. 21s-Larry Joe Sroufe, 8.110; 3. 16-Grant Valkner, 8.112; 4. 20i-John Ivy, 8.115; 5. 68g-Tyler Gunn, 8.130; 6. 73b-Brent Busz, 8.148; 7. 46-Tyler Lindsay, 8.163; 8. 51-Jason Ormsby, 8.165; 9. 75b-Brian Busz, 8.177; 10. 9m-Jonathan Reid, 8.185; 11. 12c-Blane Culp, 8.274; 12. 2-Dustin Ingle, 8.304; 13. 48-Bobby Murany, 8.319; 14. 17n-Dillon Nusbaum, 8.321; 15. 15-Andy Hall, 8.326; 16. 12k-Sam Kimmel, 8.347; 17. 21-Brenton Lamb, 8.479; 18. 777-Ben Long, 8.685; 19. 57b-Michael Busz, 8.736; 20. 115-Brandon Yeiter, 9.215; 21. 8-Tony Jones, 9.339; 22. 19-Aiden Williamson, NT.

Non-Winged 600cc Micro Heat Race #1 (8 laps, top four transfer): 1. Jonathan Reid [1], 2. Tyler Lindsay [2], 3. Justin Harper [4], 4. Sam Kimmel [6] / 5. John Ivy [3], 6. Michael Busz [7], 7. Bobby Murany [5].

Non-Winged 600cc Micro Heat Race #2 (8 laps, top four transfer): 1. Blane Culp [1], 2. Jason Ormsby [2], 3. Larry Joe Sroufe [4], 4. Tyler Gunn [3] / 5. Dillon Nusbaum [5], 6. Brenton Lamb [6], 7. Brandon Yeiter (DNS).

Non-Winged 600cc Micro Heat Race #3 (8 laps, top four transfer): 1. Brian Busz [2], 2. Dustin Ingle [1], 3. Andy Hall [5], 4. Grant Valkner [4] / 5. Ben Long [6], 6. Tony Jones [7], 7. Brent Busz [3].

Non-Winged 600cc Micro B-Main (10 laps, top four transfer): 1. Dillon Nusbaum [2], 2. Bobby Murany [5], 3. Ben Long [1], 4. Brent Busz [4] / 5. Brenton Lamb [3], 6. John Ivy (DNS), 7. Michael Busz (DNS), 8. Tony Jones (DNS), 9. Brandon Yeiter (DNS).

Non-Winged 600cc Micro Feature (25 laps): 1. 53-Justin Harper [4], 2. 16-Grant Valkner [2], 3. 75-Brian Busz [7], 4. 68g-Tyler Gunn [1], 5. 12c-Blane Culp [9], 6. 9m-Jonathan Reid [8], 7. 21s-Larry Joe Sroufe [3], 8. 12k-Sam Kimmel [12], 9. 777-Ben Long [15], 10. 48-Bobby Murany [14], 11. 15-Andy Reid [11], 12. 17n-Dillon Nusbaum [13], 13. 46-Tylar Lindsay [5], 14. 73b-Brent Busz [16], 15. 2-Dustin Ingle [10], 16. 51-Jason Ormsby [6].

Lap Leader(s): Gunn 1-3, Sroufe 4-18, Harper 19-20, B. Busz 21-23, Harper 24-25.

Hard Charger: #777 – Ben Long (+10)

Senior Caged Go-Kart Feature (15 laps): 1. Missy Bootes (first female kart winner since Amelia Eisenschenk in 2018), 2. Dylan Woodling, 3. Kevin Wall Jr., 4. Jim Focht, 5. Jeremy Howe, 6. Jeremy Smith, 7. Brooke Ramey, 8. Seumus Calderwood, 9. Ryan Moran, 10. Bill Warner (DNS).

Junior Caged Go-Kart Feature (15 laps): 1. Dylan Trost. Full results forthcoming.

Clone 400 Go-Kart Feature (15 laps): 1. Travis Fisher, 2. Erik Wolleson, 3. JoJo Warner, 4. Justin Clark, 5. Andrea Weaver, 6. Chris Frank, 7. Seumus Calderwood, 8. Jamie Miller, 9. Dalton Lane, 10. Charlie Schultz, 11. Blake Smith, 12. Derek Hammond, 13. Ali Dukeshire, 14. Zach Myers.

Clone 360 Go-Kart Feature (15 laps): 1. Phillip Schneider, 2. Alex Smolders, 3. Josh McKnight, 4. Dustin Heath, 5. Shawn Kluck, 6. RJ Cornett, 7. Joey Pendergrass, 8. Larry Kingseed Jr., 9. Damon Woodbury, 10. Ryan Ruhl, 11. Zeth Sabo, 12. Jake Dukeshire.

Clone 330 Go-Kart Feature (15 laps): 1. Phillip Schneider, 2. Shawn Kluck, 3. Dustin Heath, 4. Josh McKnight, 5. Joey Pendergrass, 6. Kevin Wall Jr., 7. Doug Stearly, 8. Larry Kingseed Jr., 9. Jakeb Boxell, 10. Alex Smolders, 11. Kyler Bowlby, 12. Devin Hammond, 13. Damon Woodbury, 14. Marcus Weaver.

Junior 3 Go-Kart Feature (15 laps): 1. Landen Francis, 2. Tristan Chamberlain, 3. Andrew Bogusz, 4. Travis Whittal, 5. Colton Coe, 6. Blayne Keckler, 7. Carson Mason, 8. Jaxon Kilpatrick, 9. Kalib Richardson, 10. Charlie Baur, 11. Austin Kryta.

Wedge Go-Kart Feature (15 laps): 1. Evan Verduin, 2. Elijah Haughee, 3. Mason Lowe, 4. Colton Gill, 5. Landyn Neitling, 6. Hayden Stremme, 7. Ella Terry, 8. Kaden Sexton, 9. Austin McCallum, 10. Addison Pressler, 11. Samantha Banla, 12. AJ White, 13. Brycen Schrock, 14. Abbey Meyers.

Kid Kart Feature (10 laps): 1. Kear Mills, 2. Daulton Sonnigsen, 3. Greysen Prater, 4. Weston Thunberg, 5. Keilan Calderwood, 6. Colter Ballenbacher, 7. Luke Hessel, 8. Reed Hicks, 9. Trax Wolff, 10. Tigh Shaffer (DNS), 11. Cole Staton (DNS).

Animal Combined QM Feature (12 laps): 1. Kamden Hibbitt, 2. Austin Kryta, 3. Andrew White, 4. Matthew Weaver, 5. Kedryn Evenson, 6. Johnny Bishop, 7. Nolan Mitchell, 8. David Carter Jr., 9. Caleb Edington (DNS), 10. Austin Geer (DNS).

Senior Honda QM Feature (12 laps): 1. Lukas Waber, 2. Dylan Regnerus, 3. Kedryn Evenson, 4. Nolan Mitchell, 5. 16, 6. Phillip Clement Jr., 7. Matthew Dennany, 8. Jaden Tharp, 9. Cohen Ellet, 10. Brady Williams, 11. Ilah Williams, 12. Isaiah Higdon, 13. Connor Hoag.

Junior Honda QM Feature (12 laps): 1. Cam Lindsay, 2. Kadence Hibbitt, 3. JD Kimmel, 4. McDenna Kren, 5. Jaxson Ridenour, 6. Austin Keehn, 7. Hunter Collins, 8. Jimmy High III.

Heavy 160 QM Feature (12 laps): 1. Austin Kryta, 2. Alexis Regnerus, 3. Austin Geer, 4. Caleb Edington, 5. Matthew Weaver, 6. Andrew White, 7. Mason Damman, 8. Taylor Gruss.

Heavy 120 QM Feature (12 laps): 1. Austin Kryta, 2. Caleb Edington, 3. Kaleb McCloskey, 4. Taylor Gruss, 5. Khloe Kee.

Light 160 QM Feature (12 laps): 1. Kamden Hibbitt, 2. Kedryn Evenson, 3. Conrad, 4. JD Kimmel, 5. Lukas Waber, 6. Jaden Tharp, 7. Memarie Ashcraft.

 

thursday december 16th

 

 HAPPY HOMECOMING FEELING FOR MIDGETS COMPETING AT #RUMBLE 23Thursday Night Test Finds Issues for Several Teams

 

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – Thursday night’s open practice for the 23rd Rumble in Fort Wayne presented by Jason Dietsch Trailer Sales had the feeling of a happy homecoming inside the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum.

It marked the first time since 2019 that race cars took to the floor of the Coliseum’s Expo Center, after the COVID-19 pandemic forced the cancellation of the 2020 edition.

“It’s good to be back in here,” noted veteran national midget competitor Travis Welpott. “It’s been a long two years away.”

All 17 classes that will be competing in this year’s Rumble turned two rounds of practice laps on the flat, sixth-mile concrete-and-soda syrup oval, headlined by the national midgets, which have been involved in every Rumble in Fort Wayne dating back to the inaugural event in 1998.

Though no official times were recorded, 33 entries turned at least one lap of practice Thursday night.

That list included 11-time and defending Rumble winner Tony Stewart, who’s familiar Our Gang Poker No. 2 Munchkin midget rolled into the building in time for the second practice session.

Stewart quickly looked as comfortable as ever at the event the three-time NASCAR Cup Series champion has owned since first reaching victory lane there in 2001. He’ll be part of a three-car Tony Stewart Racing assault that includes Munchkin fabricator Mike Fedorcak and supermodified ace Joey Payne.

A handful of issues hampered the national midget field Thursday night, most during the first round of hot laps. Scott Koerner and Rumble rookie Christian Koehler both spun in turn three, while Don Dietsch made contact with the outside wall in turn four that broke the front axle on his white No. 5.

Final practice for the midgets ran uninterrupted and the checkered flag waved at 9:38 p.m. The evening was capped off by the Rumble Kickoff Party at the Holiday Inn Purdue Fort Wayne, put on by event sponsor Jason Dietsch Trailer Sales.

While most drivers had smooth sailing through their installation runs Thursday night, three-time Rumble winner and perennial favorite Justin Peck battled engine issues with his Steve Clay-owned No. 5x.

Peck tipped that he “felt like it might have been down a cylinder,” but that he and his crew hadn’t fully isolated the problem. If needed, Peck said that his team could perform an engine change Friday morning prior to the racing program.

“It’s frustrating,” Peck said. “You come in here after two years away, and you want to run well … but we’re not off to the start we want to be. This is the only event of its kind and we’re eager for another trophy here, but we’ve got some work to do before we can think about that.”

Fan favorite Ken Schrader made two practice runs in Randy Burrow’s patriotic No. 49 car, but was hampered by mechanical and setup issues, as well as overheating during the final session.

Tickets for Friday’s and Saturday’s race programs are available through any Ticketmaster outlet or at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum box office, and on race-day. For those unable to make the trek to Fort Wayne, this year’s program will be live streamed in its entirety via Pit Row TV and SPEED SPORT TV.

Complete event information may be found at 
www.rumbleinfortwayne.com

MEL AND DON KENYON RECEIVE RUMBLE’S DAVID LESIECKI AWARD Duo Honored Sharing Passion and Dedication to Racing

 

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – Mel and Don Kenyon, considered two of the founding fathers of midget racing, were presented with the Rumble in Fort Wayne’s highest honor during opening ceremonies on Saturday night.

The Kenyon brothers were named as the co-recipients of the seventh David Lesiecki Award for Untiring Dedication and Devotion to Motorsports, recognizing their longtime commitment to both the Rumble itself and short-track auto racing as a whole.

The award was created in 2014 to honor the late Lesiecki, who passed away prior to that year’s Rumble and was instrumental in the operation and success of the quarter midget class at the event for many years.

Lesiecki‘s widow Diana and sons A.J. and Jonathan, who both raced 600cc micro sprints at the Rumble for many years, have remained an active part of the Rumble community and the event’s operational success.

Diana has maintained the quarter midget program behind the scenes since David’s passing with help from 2018 Lesiecki Award recipient Larry Ebert, while A.J. and Jonathan transitioned over to lead the technical inspection side of the micro sprint program this year instead of racing in their own rights.

The Lesiecki family wanted to honor someone this year that had been intertwined with the history of racing in Fort Wayne, Ind., since the beginning, and the Kenyons fit that bill perfectly.

“Looking at who races here year after year, there’s no one else who has shown more dedication to this event than Mel and Don Kenyon,” said Diana Lesiecki. “Attending the first-ever indoor races in Fort Wayne in the old building in 1955 make them, perhaps, the longest tenured racers in this city. They brought three cars to this weekend’s event, and they traditionally keep their drivers in contention year after year when it comes time to go Rumble racing.”

“It is our honor to place Mel and Don alongside the previous recipients of the David Lesiecki Award and we thank them for being tremendous ambassadors for the sport that we all love so much.”

The Kenyon family’s 3K Racing operation has won one career Rumble in Fort Wayne midget feature, coming on Dec. 31, 2016, when Kyle Hamilton took the flagship yellow No. 6 to victory lane.

Mel Kenyon, however, has only missed one year’s worth of indoor racing in history when it comes to the city of Fort Wayne. He has appeared either as a driver or car owner in every major Fort Wayne event dating back to 1955, with the exception of 1965, the year he was severely burned during an Indy car crash at Langhorne (Pa.) Speedway.

Past recipients of the David Lesiecki Award include John Ivy (2014), Doc Hathaway (2015), Larry Cleveland (2016), Joe Liguori (2017), Ebert (2018) and Charlie Schultz (2019).

 

 

$2,000 TO WIN LIMBACHER MEMORIAL RACE TO HIGHLIGHT RUMBLE KARTS Legacy of Popular Engine Builder Carried on by Family

 

FORT WAYNE, IND (December 14, 2021) – This year’s go-kart portion of the 23rd Rumble in Fort Wayne presented by Jason Dietsch Trailer Sales will again be highlighted by the John Limbacher Memorial race on Saturday, December 18. Competing for the $2,000 paycheck will be the Bob Buescher Homes 360 Clone division on the 1/6 mile concrete oval built inside of the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum.

 

“As I was growing up, the Rumble was an annual tradition for me and my dad,” commented Jon Ryan Limbacher, John’s son. “It always made for great memories as we competed with the go-kart; me as the driver and dad as the engine builder. When he passed away in 2017, my family wanted to do something to give back to the racing community that my dad loved so much.”

 

Jake Shelley (Okeana, OH) captured the first Limbacher Memorial in 2017, while Dustin Heath (Morris, IL) etched his name into the history books with his 2018 victory. Philip Schneider (Wapakoneta, OH) made some exciting last lap moves to become the most recent winner in 2019. The Rumble was unable to be staged last year due to pandemic restrictions.

 

“Dad’s business, Limbacher Extreme Power, was highly respected in the go-kart circle and he loved the on-track competition level of the karts. With $2,000 to win, that is certainly going to up the ante on competition and I’m sure dad is proud of what we are doing to carry on his legacy,” continued Jon.

 

Two full days of racing, December 17 and 18, will make up this year’s Rumble in Fort Wayne. Joining the Bob Buescher Homes 360 Clones in karting action will be the Economy Auto Parts 330 Clone, Jeremy Howe Racing Senior Champ, Coe Heating & Air Junior 3, everageauto.com Wedge, Kid Kart, Junior Sportsman and 400 Clone divisions. Also on the card will be Midgets, LiUNA Non-Winged 600 Midgets, North Baltimore Custom Cuts Winged 600 Midgets and 6 classes of Baker Racing Engines Quarter Midgets.

Advance tickets are available through any Ticketmaster outlet or at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum box office, and on race-day. For those unable to make the trek to Fort Wayne, this year’s program will be live streamed in its entirety via Pit Row TV and SPEED SPORT TV.

 

RUMBLE 23 ADDS "RISING STAR AWARD" FOR QUARTER MIDGET DIVISION



FORT WAYNE, IN (Dec 13, 2021) – Pit Row TV, the broadcast partner for The Rumble in Fort Wayne presented by Jason Dietsch Trailer Sales, will acknowledge the "Rising Star of the Rumble" with a plaque presented through SPEED SPORT 1 and a check for $200 to the quarter midget racer chosen by committee to receive it.

"The Rumble in Fort Wayne has been a launchpad for the careers of many national level stars," said event promoter Larry Boos. "Today, I see Chase Briscoe and Erik Jones racing at the highest levels and I remember when they were much younger and racing their quarter midgets with us at the Rumble. I expect to see many more ascend to the national ranks after their time with us, too."

Covering the careers of young racers since the early days has been SPEED SPORT, who just launched a new content network, SPEED SPORT 1. The Rumble in Fort Wayne is one of the crown jewel events in their portfolio; Pit Row TV is an affiliate of SPEED SPORT TV.
 
"The excitement of having the likes of Tony Stewart, Ken Schrader, and Justin Peck may receive the biggest headlines, but we want to look deeper and attempt to shine a light on a quarter midget racer on the rise with this award." said Pit Row TV's Chief Steward, Tony Stevens.

Competitors can register for the Baker Racing Engines Quarter Midgets on-site at the Rumble through the start of each day's racing events. Additionally, registration will be open through the start of each day's racing events for all other divisions including the North Baltimore Custom Cuts winged 600cc Midgets, LiUNA non-winged 600’s, and the headlining midget cars. The go-kart division will also be represented with 8 classes including the Jeremy Howe Racing Sr. Champs, Coe Heating & Air Conditioning Junior 3’s, Economy Auto Parts 330 Clones, Bob Buescher Homes 360 Clones, everageauto.com Wedge Karts, Junior Sportsman, 400 Clones and Kid Karts. Each of the divisions and classes will compete in full programs each day.

Advance tickets are available through any Ticketmaster outlet or at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum box office, and on race-day. For those unable to make the trek to Fort Wayne, this year’s program will be live streamed in its entirety via Pit Row TV and SPEED SPORT TV.

Complete event information may be found at
www.rumbleinfortwayne.com

 

 

FASTEST LiUNA NON-WINGED 600cc MIDGET AT RUMBLE TO BE REWARDED Bumper to Bumper/Auto Value Super Sprint Series Sponsor Offers $250 Nightly

 

FORT WAYNE, IND (December 13, 2021) – Following each night’s (Dec. 17/18) timed practice sessions for the LiUNA Non-Winged 600cc Midgets competing in the Rumble in Fort Wayne presented by Jason Dietsch Trailer Sales, the quickest timer will receive $250. The bonus is being put up for grabs courtesy of Tom Hartsell, proprietor of Cass Auto in Cassopolis, MI and owner of the Auto Value Bumper to Bumper Sprint Series (AVBBSS).

 

“We look forward to the Rumble and understand that many drivers, including some of those that compete in our series, use the Rumble to sharpen their reflexes in anticipation of the outdoor racing season ahead of them,” stated Hartsell.  “And we know that speed is the name of the game, so our store is excited to offer this extra incentive to the driver that gets around the 1/6 mile concrete oval inside of the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum the quickest.”

 

Recently the AVBBSS group joined forces with the management team at Anderson (IN) Speedway to create the 500 Sprint Series and will be introducing the new look and goals for pavement Sprint Car racing.

 

“Showcasing speed fits right into the image we will be projecting for our new series, and what better way than to join forces with the speedsters of the Rumble,” concluded Hartsell.

 

The LiUNA Non-Winged 600cc Midgets that will be in the hunt for the nightly $250 bonus will be joined each night by their counterpart North Baltimore Custom Cuts Winged 600cc Midgets as well as a full field of Midgets. Rounding out the busy agenda will be six classes of Baker Racing Engines Quarter Midgets and eight classes of Go-Karts, including the Economy Auto Parts 330 Clone, Bob Buescher Homes 360 Clone, 400 Clone, Jeremy Howe Racing Senior Champs, Coe Heating & Air Junior 3, Junior Sportsman, everageauto.com Wedge Karts and Kid Karts. Entries for all the classes will be accepted right up through each race day.

Advance tickets are available through any Ticketmaster outlet or at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum box office, and on race-day. For those unable to make the trek to Fort Wayne, this year’s program will be live streamed in its entirety via Pit Row TV and SPEED SPORT TV.

Complete event information may be found at 
www.rumbleinfortwayne.com

 

#RUMBLE23 ADDS ‘RISING STAR AWARD’ FOR QUARTER MIDGET DIVISION Upwards of 85 races, 4 Pit Areas and 17 Classes Add to Complexity

 

 

FORT WAYNE, IND (December 13, 2021) Pit Row TV, the broadcast partner for the Rumble in Fort Wayne presented by Jason Dietsch Trailer Sales, will acknowledge the "Rising Star of the Rumble" with a plaque presented through SPEED SPORT 1 and a check for $200 to the quarter midget racer chosen by committee to receive it.


"The Rumble in Fort Wayne has been a launchpad for the careers of many national level stars," said event promoter Larry Boos. "Today, I see Chase Briscoe and Erik Jones racing at the highest levels and I remember when they were much younger and racing their quarter midgets with us at the Rumble. I expect to see many more ascend to the national ranks after their time with us, too."

Covering the careers of young racers since the early days has been SPEED SPORT, who just launched a new content network, SPEED SPORT 1. The Rumble in Fort Wayne is one of the crown jewel events in their portfolio; Pit Row TV is an affiliate of SPEED SPORT TV. 

 "The excitement of having the likes of Tony Stewart, Ken Schrader, Thomas Meseraull, and Justin Peck may receive the biggest headlines, but we want to look deeper and attempt to shine a light on a quarter midget racer on the rise with this award." said Pit Row TV's Chief Steward, Tony Stevens. 

Competitors can register for the Baker Racing Engines Quarter Midgets on-site at the Rumble through the start of each day's racing events. Additionally, registration will be open through the start of each day's racing events for all other divisions including the North Baltimore Custom Cuts winged 600cc Midgets, LiUNA non-winged 600’s, and the headlining midget cars. The go-kart division will also be represented with 8 classes including the Jeremy Howe Racing Sr. Champs, Coe Heating & Air Conditioning Junior 3’s, Economy Auto Parts 330 Clones, Bob Buescher Homes 360 Clones, everageauto.com Wedge Karts, Junior Sportsman, 400 Clones and Kid Karts. Each of the divisions and classes will compete in full programs each day.

Advance tickets are available through any Ticketmaster outlet or at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum box office, and on race-day. For those unable to make the trek to Fort Wayne, this year’s program will be live streamed in its entirety via Pit Row TV and SPEED SPORT TV.

Complete event information may be found at 
www.rumbleinfortwayne.com

PIECES OF THE RUMBLE PUZZLE HAVE BEEN PUT TOGETHER AND AGENDA RELEASED Upwards of 85 races, 4 Pit Areas and 17 Classes Add to Complexity

 

 

FORT WAYNE, IND (December 12, 2021) – With upwards of 85 racing events, excluding practice sessions, on tap each

night of the 23rd Rumble in Fort Wayne presented by Jason Dietsch Trailer Sales, putting together a fluid agenda can often be difficult. Factoring in 17 classes of racing among 5 divisions, with pits located in 4 different areas of the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum adds complexity to the planning. To aid with an orderly flow of events, Rumble officials have released timetables for the December 17/18 event.

 

“We are fortunate to have pretty much the same crew of officials year after year,” commented promoter Larry Boos. “They know their roles and perform them flawlessly and collectively as a team, with fantastic cooperation from the race teams.  Sure, there are some hiccups along the way, and unexpected things happen, but the neat thing is, that is mostly behind the scenes and the fans don’t notice anything other than a non-stop show.”

 

Racing on the 1/6 mile concrete oval inside of the massive building will be Midgets, LiUNA non-winged 600cc Midgets, North Baltimore Custom Cuts winged 600cc Midgets and multiple classes of Baker Racing Engines Quarter Midgets (Junior Honda, Senior Honda, Light 160, Heavy 160, Animal Combined and Heavy 120). Go-Kart classes include Economy Auto Parts 330 Clone, Bob Buescher Homes 360 Clone, Coe Heating & Air Junior 3, Jeremy Howe Racing Senior Champ, everageauto.com Wedge, Kid Kart and 400 Clone. An impressive entry list has already been compiled and will continue to grow through the race weekend as entries are also accepted day of the show.

 

The busy Rumble in Fort Wayne presented by Jason Dietsch Trailer Sales weekend kicks off Thursday with a move-in of race cars and an optional practice session that evening, while Friday and Saturday will see complete racing programs each day. Spectator gates will open at 11 a.m. The afternoon segment is reserved primarily for the Go-Kart and Quarter Midget preliminaries and main events, while the evening segment focuses most upon the Midgets and 600cc Midget classes. A complete agenda of daily activities will be posted on rumbleinfortwayne.com.

 

Advance tickets are available through any Ticketmaster outlet or at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum box office, and on race-day. For those unable to make the trek to Fort Wayne, this year’s program will be live streamed in its entirety via Pit Row TV and SPEED SPORT TV.

 

 

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