2013-14 Round 4
Slots A Fun 400 - Stardust Speedway, Greendale, WI
Round 4 of 16
October 10, 2013
WHAT: Slots A Fun 400
WHERE: Greendale, WI
WHEN: Thursday, October 10, 2013 7pm
U.S. TELEVISION SCHEDULE: MBC Slotcar Network, YouTube
2012 CHAMPION: Mark Walczak
2012 POLESITTER: Mike Kristof
TRACK LAYOUT: “Bullring” Oval
RACE LENGTH: 400 laps
TRACK RECORDS: Qualifying – Sep 2012 – Mike Kristof – 7.002
Race – Mar 2013 – Dean Strom – 18:02.456
Fast Lap – Feb 2012 – Mark Walczak – 1.763
RACE ROUND: 4 of 16 in the 2013-2014 IndySlotCar Series
Las Vegas, NV - Series history was made Thursday evening in the Slots-O-Fun Grand Prix as Mark Walczak made a second half comeback to take the victory and become the IndySlotCar Series all-time win leader. Walczak wasted no time ascending the series winner list and with his second victory in as many races passed Phil Cianciola with win number 37 to top the list. The always statistically aware driver had the overall wins goal on his mind entering this season and knew history was made when he took the checkered flag. "I feel like I hit the jackpot," exclaimed Walczak in victory lane. "It's nice to get the record and knock Phil [Cianciola] down a spot."
The Slots-O-Fun Grand Prix at the Las Vegas' Stardust Speedway kicked off with a surprise as track owner RJ Foyt's driver Mike Kristof set fast time in qualifying and shocked the field by capturing his seventh career pole. The opening heat race exposed some of the desert tracks issues as problems in turn two affected both John Wiedemann and home town favorite Chris Spehert. Wiedemann was able to rally in the second half of the race to tie Everet Kamikawa at the finish line. Series officials and race marshalls were unable to determine the race winner and and the official results were postponed until the completion of heat racing. It was discovered later that "replacement" marshalls from New Jersey were used as a cost savings measure by the Stardust track.
The second heat race was won by TMWR driver Dean Strom and the third went to his teammate Walczak with Mike Fitzlaff in transfer contention scoring the same amount of laps as heat one competitors Wiedemann and Kamikawa. Polesitter Kristoff crashed out of his heat race, unable to capitalize on his qualifying speed. Officials decided that the three drivers vying for the heat one win and transfer position would race a short twelve lap qualifying session to determine who would race in the final. Kamikawa hit the track first and a quick spin in turn one hindered his time. Wiedemann was next and also spun in turn one but beat Kamikawa's overall time by fourteen hundredths of a second. Fitzlaff saved the best for last and turned in the quickest time sending himself and KV Racing teammate Wiedemann to the finals while a dejected Kamikawa finished fifth overall.
More drama ensued in the start of the feature as the outside lane had issues that warranted repair in the opening laps of the race. While the track issues were never fully repaired, the race went on. Fitzlaff paced the field in the opening half followed closely by Strom and then Walczak, about 10 laps back. Wiedemann fell quickly behind due to the track issues in the outside lane and would never be in contention. Following pitstops in the second half of the race, Walczak made his move. First he passed Fitzlaff, who was struggling in the outside lane, and then he set his sights on teammate Strom. While Walczak's crew seemed to hit the right setup for their driver, Strom struggled just enough to fall victim to Walczak's speed. Walczak took the lead and the checkers by a nine lap margin for his second victory of the season. "The car handled a hell of a lot better in the blue lane," said Walczak. "A big thanks goes to my crew for making the right changes during the pitstop. I'm just happy that my teammate and I could place one and two in this race."
With the Slots-O-Fun Grand Prix victory, Walczak vaults into the points lead as he chases his fifth Husarsbuilt trophy. Fitzlaff drops to second in the standings, fourteen points back, followed by Wiedemann and Strom. Matt Hayek jumped up two spots into the top five in the standings.
MILWAUKEE INTERNATIONAL (NEW)/STARDUST SPEEDWAY HISTORY (4 events, 2010 - Present)
Year Race Winner
2010 Chris Spehert – MILWAUKEE INTERNATIONAL
2012 Dean Strom – February – STARDUST SPEEDWAY
2012 Mark Walczak - September
2013 Dean Strom - March
Mike Lack has opened a 23 point lead after opening the season with two straight wins, followed by his teammate John Weidemann, who is coming off a win at the West Bend Grand Prix. Meanwhile the points battle is tight from positions 3-6 which is covered by 2 points with Dean Strom holding a one point advantage over Ev Kamikawa, who is one point ahead of Dungeons & Dragon Racing teammates Matt Hayek and Mike Kristof.
Dean Strom has won two of the four events run at Stardust Speedway.
John Weidemann scored his first win of the season at the last race.
Mike has won two of the first three races of the season.
John Weidemann broke a tie with Mike Kristof with his pole position at the West Bend GP to move into 11th all-time for wins with 8.
Weidemann’s heat win moved him into 13th all-time with 24.