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American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Stock Car Racing Topics:  Ron Vandermeier Jr.


Eric Huenefeld
Mid American Stock Car Series
June 22, 2013

Ron Vandermeier Jr led a very small amount of Friday night’s ‘Digital Fuel Solutions 40’ for the Mid American Stock Car Series at Grundy County Speedway. In fact, Vandermeir never led the race after halfway. But at the end of the night, Vandermeir was declared the winner.

Elwood, Illinois driver Kevin Gentile took the checkered flag first in the marathon 40 lap feature event, completing what was a night to remember for the 2012 Grundy track champion. Earlier in the evening, Gentile had posted the fastest lap in qualifying, topping a season-high 24 cars in time trials.

However, after the feature and in post-race technical inspection, an engine infraction was found on Gentile’s machine. The infraction (illegal heads), was enough to force Mid American officials to strip Gentile of his win and award it to runner-up Vandermeir.

Vandermeir made his climb to the front after starting the event in sixth place and while taking part in several rugged battles for position. Vandermeir would wrestle with Gentile, 2012 Mid American champion Jeremy Spoonmore and Grundy regular Chuck Yuris during this stretch. The battling near the front would be escalated by five restarts in the first nine laps of the event, forcing the field into double file formation numerous times.

However, after the fifth yellow flag, Mid American officials would make the switch to single file formation on the restarts, which strung out the field and moved the race quickly towards its conclusion.

Gentile hit the line first, 3.2 seconds ahead of Vandermeir. But following post-race inspection, the rundown would show Vandermeir in first, ahead of Spoonmore. Current Grundy County Speedway points leader Tommy Knippenberg finished in third, with local favorites Matt Clemens and Frank Slabenak Jr rounding out the top five.

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