The Battle Royal rages on. Two North Dakotans. A pair of Hemis. Mustang versus Studebaker. The result has been elapsed times that are creeping ever so close to 5 seconds and some killer drag racing for fans.
Ray Fuchs and Rick Schmidt have been waging a war on Brainerd International Raceway’s drag strip this season during the three-race Muscle Car Series, and it’s a blast to watch. Fuchs, the defending Outlaw Pro Mod champ, won the class last weekend, beating Schmidt in the finals to avenge his loss in the finals to Schmidt during the Street Car Showdown earlier this summer.
The two will settle things Labor Day weekend during the series finale – the GSTA Muscle Car Shootout – when the class champ will be crowned. And unless something crazy happens, it’ll most likely be one of these two heavyweights.
Driving a 2011 Mustang, Schmidt was the No. 1 qualifier last weekend during the PleasureLand RV Show & Go. He was gunning for a 5-second run and almost nailed it, posting a time of 6.126 seconds and 227.38 mph in qualifying and then running 6.124 seconds in the first round of eliminations, which could be a series record. But in the finals against Fuchs, the Mustang swerved and nearly crossed the centerline, causing Schmidt to let up off the gas and concede the win to Fuchs, whose time was 6.487 seconds and 215.96 mph.
The 31st Annual PleasureLand RV Show & Go drew a big crowd again this year, with three days of drag racing and road racing, culminating with a pair of Trans Am Series presented by Pirelli road races on Sunday. Both will be televised later this month.
While Outlaw Pro Mod cars were flirting with breaking the 5-second mark, the Outlaw cars weren’t far behind. Bubba Romanyshyn was the No. 1 qualifier with a time of 6.750 seconds and 211.93 mph. But the weekend belonged to Jake Delmonico and his 1968 Camaro, which was flying down the track at over 200 mph and 7 seconds.
Romanyshyn lost in the second round, opening the door for Delmonico to earn his way to the finals against Shannon O’Leary and her 2017 Camaro. Delmonico beat her off the starting line and made the rest look easy, with a winning time of 8.062 seconds at 152.68 mph. O’Leary ran 9.426 seconds and 145.72 mph.
In True Street, Zach Novak is making a run at a clean sweep, winning the Street Car Showdown and again last weekend. Driving a Mustang GT, he beat Wayne Bellanger in the finals when Bellanger fouled at the starting line. Novak was the top qualifier with a time of 8.133 seconds and 167.51 mph.
Also of note last weekend, Kevin Sand’s 26-round win streak came to an end when he lost in the first round of Strip Eliminator 1 (SE1). He hadn’t lost since last year’s Show & Go, winning the SE1, the 10.00 Index and the Index Class Championship during last year’s Muscle Car Shootout and last fall’s Street Car Showdown. He rallied to win the 10.00 Index Class Sunday but couldn’t pull off the win in the Index Class Championship, which went to Gary Olson.
Outlaw Pro Mod
Finals: Ray Fuchs of Bowman, N.D. def. Rick Schmidt of Dickinson, N.D.
Finals: Jake Delmonico of St. Paul Park def. Shannon O’Leary of Ramsey
Finals: Jason Geiger of Hanska def. Chris Orr of Superior, Wis.
Real Street Unlimited
Finals: Duane Godbout of Cloquet def. Jason Nelson of Champlin
Real Street Natural
Finals: Bob Wallin of Superior, Wis. def. Bill Meyer of Andover
Finals: Zack Novak of Sauk Rapids def. Wayne Bellanger of St. Louis Park
Finals: Brian Carpenter of Forest Lake def. Dan Boyko of Winnipeg, Manitoba
Strip Eliminator 1
Finals: Bob Lacey of Dayton def. Troy Bednarz of Nowthen
Strip Eliminator 2
Finals: Nick Bredemus of St. Paul def. Jim Carlson of Minneapolis
Strip Eliminator 3
Finals: Zach Schloesser of Albertville def. Kirk Leith of Jordan
Finals: Jerry Jablonski of Duluth def. Brent Karpinske of Elk River
Finals: Jeremy Reitmeier of Crookston def. Cameron Dorlon of Nisswa
Index Class Champion
Finals: Gary Olson of Sartell def. Kevin Hemenway of Park Rapids
Finals: Gerald Cook of Mora def. Pat Huebner of Bloomington
Finals: Kevin Sand of Cambridge def. Bryan Hansen of Minneapolis
Finals: Mike Hammerstrom of Bemidji def. Andrew Dancer of Royalton
Finals: David Brostrom of Mora def. Dan Boyce of Minnetonka
Finals: Nathaniel Rutz of Randall def. Zach Stengel of Blaine
Finals: Kevin Hemenway of Park Rapids def. Eric Blumke of Pillager
Finals: Karl Conner of Isle def. Dan Reisinger of Albany
Finals: Ryan Hansen of Esko def. Cole Scofield of Little Falls
Finals: Todd Anderson of Brainerd def. Kris Leonard of Dayton