2017-18 Round 14
The Shrine Cup - Shrine Desert Road Course - Wauwatosa, WI
March 15, 2018
Round 14 of 16
Lack Shines At Shrine
(Wauwatosa, WI) -- Mike Lack brought the Shrine Cup to the Shrine Desert Road Course as the defending race winner and he left with said cup after dominating the reborn road course Thursday night. The defending and soon to be five-time Husarsbilt Cup champion never had a serious challenger as the original track of the IndySlotCar Series returned to the schedule after a one year layoff for a complete rebuild.
The track was completely transformed from a right hand turn dominate course to a left hand turn track with all the popular features of the 10-turn desert course still there, including the elevation changes, the carousel and "Hugh Downs". But even with the change in the track, Mike Lack went right to the sharp end of the grid grabbing the Chick-fil-A P1 Award as well as cruising to a heat win on his way to the 20-minute final where he was never challenged.
The night began with star power on display as Today's TMJ Four Sports reporter Lance Allan was on hand to cover the series during it's 25th season, and major sponsor Chick-fil-A, 124th & Capitol's Jon Kurazawa along with the Chick-fil-A cow were also there for the festivities, including a celebrity race between Allan and Kurazawa, it appeared the reporter got the better of the two, but it was closer racing than would be seen during the feature event.
Dean Strom would return to the circuit after missing several races while traveling the country to cover major motorsports action elsewhere, it was a triumphant return as he easily won the opening heat race and ran a stout second place on the night to Lack's dominance. A resurgent Ev Kamikawa shot to the lead of the second heat race and never looked back, eventually holding on to the third step of the podium for the Ferrari team. John Wiedemann challenged Strom early in the first heat race but eventually had to sit and watch the next two heats to see if anyone could top his "transfer spot" lap total, no one did and he would avoid his seventh, 5th place finish, moving up one spot to fourth.
Bill Black had a solid run to fifth place ahead of Tom Spehert, who, just edged Pete Dorn, missing his first final after a two race run in the feature. Wellbox driver Mike Fitzlaff struggled with handling in the yellow lane and wound up eighth ahead of Dan Margetta, home town hero Mike Kristof was off pace all night and Matt Hayek had mechanical problems that sent him to the back of the field.
The Shrine Cup Fast Facts
Race date: Thursday, Mar 15
Track: Shrine Desert Road Course, 4-mile road course in Wauwatosa, WI
Race distance: 20 minutes
IndySlotCar Website: indyslotcar.com
2016 race winner: Mike Lack (No. 1 JAM Racing Dallara-Honda)
2016 Chick-fil-A Brookfield P1 Award winner: Mike Lack (No. 1 JAM Racing Dallara-Honda) 4.677 seconds
Single lap qualifying record: new configuration
Race record: new configuration
YouTube Broadcast: IndySlotCar Channel
At-track schedule (all times local):
6:30 – Driver introductions
7:00 – IndySlotCar Series Practice
7:20 – Qualifying for the Chick-fil-A Brookfield P1 Award (group qualifying/ fastest single lap)
7:45 – Heat races
8:30 – The Shrine Cup
· Mike Lack is coming off his fifth win of the season at the Stardust 500 and essentially locked down the championship.
· Lack moved into fifth all-time in pole positions with his 27th pole at the Stardust 500.
· Pete Dorn had his best finish of his career finishing second at the Stardust 500.
· Dorn’s second place finish catapults him to fifth place in the standings.
Shrine Cup PRE-EVENT QUOTES:
Chris Spehert No. 6 Spehert Autosport: I love this series, these guys are the best!
Dan Margetta No. 3 Penske HO Racing: Dorn? Pete Dorn? Two finals in a row? Can’t be
Bill Black No. 7 Black-Atom Racing: Isn’t the world a sunnier better place after a Mike Lack victory, whatever I can do to help the champ, I will do it.
THE SHRINE CUP HISTORY (8 events, 1993 – 1996; 2013 – 2016)
Date Race Winner Track
8/26/1993 Pat Jarvis The Shrine Track
9/8/1994 Phil Cianciola The Shrine Track
9/7/1995 Dave Austin The Shrine Track
9/5/1996 Jim Kaehny The Shrine Track
2/28/2013 Mark Walczak Shrine Desert Road Course
3/13/2014 Mike Lack Shrine Desert Road Course
3/5/2015 Matt Hayek Shrine Desert Road Course
3/17/2016 Mike Lack Shrine Desert Road Course
Most wins: Mike Lack - 2