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Stock Car Racing Topics:  Oktoberfest 35, Doug Brown, James Swan


Matt Panure
Mid American Stock Car Series
October 6, 2007

(West Salem , WI), October 6 -- It was 2006 all over again on Saturday night as Doug Brown won the Oktoberfest 35 for the Mid-American Stock Car Series and James Swan wrapped up his second straight championship. The circumstances, however, for Brown’s win were considerably different than last year. When the checkered flag flew on the event, Ryan Rose was the first car to cross the finish line but did not pass post-race technical inspection. Brown, who charged to the front only to be held off by Rose, was declared the winner.

The field was led to Dave Sankey’s green flag by Dave Obermeyer and Rose. Obermeyer took advantage of the poll position to lead the first three laps. Rose, who quickly closed in on Obermeyer, found the inside line going into turn three. As the two raced back to the line out of turn four, Rose nosed ahead and took the lead for good.

An incident involving Scott Null and Johnny Senerchia brought out the first yellow flag of the event on lap four. At that point, Swan had worked his way back into third after the restart, but was unable to move any farther forward in the field.

Photos of this event have now been posted

A caution on lap seven for a Bobby Gutknecht spin in turn four bunched up the field for the restart. On the restart, the tail end of the field piled up going into turn one. Several cars including Senerchia and Gutknecht were involved. Those two drivers, Tim Schmitt, and Kevin Damrow headed to the pit area and ended their nights early.

Once the field returned to green flag conditions, Jeremy Spoonmore moved around second place Obermeyer. Coming out of turn two on lap eight, Obermeyer experience engine troubles and bottled up the field behind him. Obermeyer retired from the race and his slowing sent James Swan back to tenth.

It was at that point that Doug Brown began to move to the front once the field stayed under green. “The car just took off on long runs. The longer we went the more forward bite we found,” said Brown. Brown moved around Lyle Nowak for fourth on lap 17, around Kyle Shear for third three laps later and around Spoonmore on lap 26.

Rose, who was on cruise control, saw Brown getting larger in his rear view mirror. With only seven laps remaining Rose approached lap traffic in the form of Nathan McHale. McHale drifted high allowing Rose the inside line. Rose and McHale made contact on the backstretch sending McHale spinning into the grass. Brown slipped around Rose, but the caution flew reverting the line up to the last completed lap giving the lead back to Rose after officials decided that McHale was the lone cause of the caution.

Brown was able to close in on Rose after the restart but Rose was too strong in the waning laps of the event. However, Rose’s machine was too light at the scales and the win was handed to Brown. “I didn’t think we had a chance to win. My goal was to keep the fenders on the car,” said Brown.

Swan, by virtue of his seventh place finish, sealed his second straight championship and third overall. “I would really like to have finished better,” said Swan. “But that doesn’t matter, we won the championship.”

The Berge racing Chevrolet Impala SS had its up and downs in 2007 but still emerged on top. “This is probably the hardest I’ve ever had to work for a championship. It was pretty cool,” said Swan. He was also quick to credit his team. “We’re all a great group of friends who have been together forever. I’m just proud to be a part of this team,” added Swan.

Kyle Shear was crowned the 2007 Mid-American rookie of the year. Kyle’s main competition was his brother Troy Jr. who finished just outside of the top ten in points. The two drivers had a stranglehold on the rookie battle as they were the only two rookies to attend every event in 2007.

Oktoberfest was the final points event for the Mid-American Stock Car Series but not the final event of 2007. The series will host the first ever “Fight for the Cure Fall Classic” at Road America on Saturday, October 27th in association with the Annual Cancer Run. The series will also invite other classes such as Area Sportsman, Classics and Limited Late Models to Road America for an open session. More information on the event is forthcoming.

Oktoberfest 35
1. Doug Brown, Savage, MN; 2. Jeremy Spoonmore, Somonauk , IL ; 3. Lyle Nowak, Wausau , WI ; 4. Kyle Shear, Roscoe , IL ; 5. Bill Prietzel, Richfield , WI ; 6. Rod Brewe, Menominee, WI; 7. James Swan, Genoa City , WI ; 8. Darren Woelke, Bell Plaine , MN ; 9. Troy Shear Jr., Roscoe , IL ; 10. Scott Null, Lake Mills , WI ; 11. Andrew Kulka, Deerfield , WI ; 12. Randy Coghlan, Toddville , IA ; 13. Mel Schappert, Cedar Rapids , IA ; 14. Maxwell Schultz, Reedsville , WI ; 15. Nathan McHale, Elko , MN ; 16. Jake Finney, Sycamore, IL; 17. Kevin Lee, Cedar Rapids , IA ; 18. Tom McClintock, Onalaska , WI ; 19. Mark Kissinger, West Bend , WI ; 20. Justin Neisius, Eagan , MN ; 21. Dave Obermeyer, Slinger, WI; 22. Bobby Gutknecht, Oak Creek , WI ; 23. Kevin Damrow, Manitowoc , WI ; 24. Tim Schmitt, New Berlin , WI ; 25. Johnny Senerchia, New Lenox , IL ; 26. Ryan Rose, Burnsville , MN – Diqualified

15 Lap Last Chance
1. Schmitt (transfer); 2. McClintock (transfer); 3. Schultz (transfer); 4. McHale (transfer);5. Travis Stanley, Prior Lake , MN ; 6. Andy Williams, Lakeville , MN ; 7. Joe Monti, Irma , WI ; 8. Louie Goss, Green Bay , WI ; 9. Jake Vanoskey, Hartford , WI ; 10. Jimmy Wilson, Appleton , WI ; 11. Kevin Lutz, Lakeville , MN ; 12. Duane Halverson, Rosemount , MN ;

10 Qualifying Heats
Heat 1: Senerchia (transfer); Coghlan (transfer); Lutz; Schultz; Schmitt;
Heat 2: Lee (transfer); Schappert (transfer); McClintock; Williams; Halverson;

10 Lap Fast Heats
Even: K. Shear; Brown; Nowak; Kissinger; Null;
Odd: Rose; Woelke; Brewe; Gutknecht; Kulka;

“Faster than a Speeding Bullet” fast qualfier: Gutknecht – 21.096 seconds

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