WEST SALEM, Wis. (June 30, 2017) – Cole Anderson didn’t waste any time finding Victory Lane in his return to racing in the Midwest. After a season of strong runs in the south, the former Dean’s Satellite and Security co-Rookie of the Year picked up his first TUNDRA Super Late Model Series win in Round Two Powered by Wisconsin Potatoes at LaCrosse Speedway Friday night.
The trio of Anderson, Dalton Zehr, and Fast Qualifier Ty Majeski surged to the front early in the Johnny’s Hobbies 50 and looked to settle the score with threatening skies looming just to the west of the five-eighths mile. Anderson was able to jump away on several restarts – once from Majeski and then twice from Zehr. From there he did not look back.
“Our car early on in the race was really rolling on the top side,” Anderson said. “I felt like that was our best bet for the first couple of laps and we really had good restarts there.”
Joel Theisen took the lead from the outside pole at the drop of the green and brought Colin Reffner along into Second. Behind them Darek Gress settled into Third. By laps three Zehr, Anderson, and Majeski took advantage of the momentum of the outside line to settle into Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth. One lap later that trio moved past Gress and started to close the gap on the lead battle.
As Reffner looked for an inside lane on Theisen, Anderson pulled even with Zehr and just edged past him at the line on lap five. This proved to be important as Reffner and Theisen tangled exiting turn four, bringing out the first yellow. Anderson inherited the lead with Zehr in Second and Majeski in Third.
On the restart Anderson elected to take the high line and Zehr selected the bottom. Anderson was able to clear Zehr off turn two and Majeski came to challenge for the runner-up spot. On lap seven Majeski found the inside line and completed the pass for Second. Because of the battle, Anderson was able to put some space between himself and the field.
Majeski got an opportunity when another caution fell on lap 14 when John Beale and Jordan DeVoy came together. Anderson once again flexed his muscle from the outside line, launching away from Majeski. One lap later Majeski dropped off the pace and pulled into the pit area. A faulty plug wire was the culprit, ending the Fast Qualifier’s feature.
Another spin on lap 15 set up a second showdown between Zehr and Anderson. This time Zehr was able to hold closer to Anderson on the inside line. However, Anderson dashed away from Zehr off turn four on the way to the line for lap 16.
A melee involving DeVoy, Gregg Pawelski, and Kyle Hansen setup the final restart on lap 29. This time Anderson selected the bottom lane, leaving the outside line for Zehr. Some sprinkles from the looming clouds were a factor in Anderson’s choice.
“I picked the bottom on the last one. I didn’t know if it was going to be wet on top, so just to be sure I went down there,” Anderson commented.
Over the second half of the race Anderson enjoyed a comfortable advantage over the rest of the pack. The most threatening moment came when two lapped cars were racing in front of Anderson and took some time to sort out so he could move past. Other than that, it was smooth sailing for the young Minnesotan.
Zehr built a healthy advantage in Second, but soon experienced issues. With less than ten laps remaining, sparks started to flow from under Zehr’s machine. Clearly his lapped times were slowing, but his advantage over the battle for Third between Michael Sauter and Mike Litchtfeld was too large.
“The sway bar broke with eight laps to go,” Zehr said. “At that point I was just in reserve mode. I don’t think we had anything for the 97 from the get go. The fastest car won the race.”
Sauter also experienced issues late in the race as his rear end began to leak during the last couple of circuits. He held on for Third over Lichtfeld and Donny Reuvers who rounded out the Top Five in his first series appearance since 2014. Leading rookie Colin Reffner finished Sixth – completing a comeback after being sent to the tail for the early skirmish with Theisen.
The next event for the TUNDRA Super Late Model Series is July 22 at Jefferson Speedway located on Higway 18 between Jefferson and Cambridge, WI. TUNDRA will once again be joined by the Midwest Truck series and local divisions to be named soon.
For more information visit http://www.jeffersonspeedway.com