By Dan Margetta
Slinger, Wis., Aug 27— Gary LaMonte emerged from a barnburner battle with Alex Prunty and Steve Apel, his two main championship rivals, to win the 60-lap super late model feature Sunday night at the Slinger Super Speedway and tighten the championship battle even further.
Heading into the final super late model points night next Sunday, Steve Apel leads Alex Prunty but a mere five points with LaMonte now just eighteen markers behind in third.
“When you’re racing against guys the caliber of Steve (Apel) and Alex (Prunty), it’s fun but it’s a lot of work and I’m glad we came out on top,” LaMonte stated from victory lane, “We’ve had too many DNF’s, nothing that my crew could control, but we’re still here and we’ve got a shot at it with one week to go.”
“I’ve got nobody to blame but myself for that one, “Prunty said, after bobbling in turn four coming to the checkered flag and coming home second, “But I had a good point night and beat Steve (Apel) and got the most laps led there. Next week we are all going to be tight and everybody is going to want to come out for that one.”
“We’ll keep rolling and keep digging as we’ve been in this position before, “Apel said after finishing third and looking ahead to the close championship battle heading into the final points night next Sunday, “I’ve had a target on my back the last couple of years and we just have to come back next week a little bit stronger.”
Brad Mueller finished fourth and Chris Blawat took the checkered flag in fifth. Grant Griesbach finished sixth followed by Mike Egan and Al Stippich while Mike Held and Conrad Morgan rounded out the top ten.
Super late model heat races were won by R.J. Braun, Chris Blawat, and Alex Prunty while Brad Mueller was the fastest qualifier at 11.320 seconds.
Kyle Chwala won the 40-lap late model feature after taking the lead on lap 30. Andy Evraets led many laps and finished second followed by Braison Bennett in third while Ryan Gutknecht and Dennis Prunty, driving Chris Ratajczyk’s car, rounded out the top five. Brian Holtz and Kyle Chwala each won a late model heat race and Jordan DeVoy was the fastest qualifier at 12.096 seconds.
Jeff Holtz took the lead on lap nine and managed to hold off a charging Ryan Gutknecht to win the 20-lap Midwest Sportsman feature. Bobby Gutknecht finished third while Scott Dunning and Randy Ruth rounded out the top five. Bobby Gutknecht won the Midwest Sportsman heat race and Ryan Gutknecht was the fastest qualifier with a lap of 12.662 seconds.
Nick Schmidt won the Super Beez feature over Tom Berens and Jayden Buckley. Brandon Tackes and Al Strobel finished fourth and fifth respectively. Steve Zoromski won the Super Beez heat race and Tom Berens set fast time at 13.759 seconds.
Brady Held won the Slinger Bees feature over Tom Elsinger Jr. and Marty Tackes. Matt Urban finished fourth and Ricky Gebhard was fifth. Slinger Bees heat races were won by Zach Greer and Brady Held while Ricky Gebhard was the fastest qualifier with a lap of 15.247 seconds.