2020-21 Round 7
Duane Sweeney Memorial Grand Prix - Road Course at Badger Raceway - Muskego, WI
December 3, 2020
Round 7 of 15
Strom Right At Home With Duane Sweeney Memorial Victory
Muskego, WI – Hometown cooking at the Road Course at Badger Raceway sure is working for Dean Strom in the 2020/2021 IndySlotCar season. A
brilliant drive in the Duane Sweeney Memorial Grand Prix at his home track by Strom lead to his second victory of the season, a sweep of both
events at his track and allowed him to put some distance between himself and his chasers as he continues to lead the point standings after seven
Strom started out fast as the track opened for the series competitors. He didn’t display much in practice, running only a few laps since the
Squirrel Shagged Enterprises team had a secret closed practice session earlier in the day. When it was time for qualifying, Strom blistered
the field with a new track record of 3.853 seconds, almost a tenth quicker than second place qualifier Mike Lack. SSE teammate Steve Rist
set the third quickest time followed by Bill Black.
Two heat races were set in “First-to-Last” configuration and the quick guys went to battle in the opening heat. While Strom led the first half
of the heat by three laps over Lack, the second half was a different story. Lack made up the three laps to get on the lead lap, but time ran
out with Lack just about a nine inch straightaway behind. Black finished third with Rist in fourth.
The second heat was led from the start to finish by Dan Margetta. John Wiedemann and Pete Dorn were within four laps at the halfway point, but
they didn’t have the cars to keep up with the leader. At the checkers, Margetta took the win by four laps over Wiedemann, who was able to best
Black’s laps to transfer to the final. Dorn had handling issues late in the race while battling for second place and ended up a lap short. Mike
Kristof struggled throughout the race and decided to park the car early in the second half.
The final quickly turned into a showdown between Strom and Lack. An early off had Lack chasing Strom for most of the first half of the race.
Margetta lost control of his ride and rolled it off the track, ending his night after 53 laps. Wiedemann took over third but clearly did not
have the speed to contend with the leaders. At the start of the second half, Wiedemann was only two laps in when he flew off the track and on
to the floor to end his night in third place.
With only the top two drivers left in the race all eyes turned to the battle for the win and were treated to a classic finish. Strom
completed his pitstop quickly and returned to the lead. Lack did not have the same luck. A slow pit stop and then a 5 second stop-and-go
penalty dropped him five laps off of Strom’s lead. But luck would not stay with the leader as Strom began to struggle with the tight infield
180 degree turn and had multiple off track excursions which allowed Lack to close in and return to the lead lap of the race. From that point on
the two drivers displayed the most intense racing seen in the league for quite some time. Running with about a half lap distance between them,
Lack would look to gain ground and then Strom would look to pull away. Then, with time running out, Lack pushed the edge of handling too far
and came off the track. Strom was able to gain the distance he needed and capture the victory, his second of the season. The 268 laps that
Strom completed set a new track record.
Strom’s win ended Lack’s streak of five open-class victories in a row and also extended the series streak to three of drivers winning at their
With the top three drivers in the points finishing in the same positions in the race, Strom was able to add distance to his points lead to 15
points over Lack. Lack extended his lead over Wiedemann to 10 points.
Up next on the schedule is the 26th annual Christmas Classic at Bermuda Raceway. Joe Heitz is the defending champion of the race and rumor
around the paddock is that he will make his return to the series at this event. No one knows exactly why he hasn’t raced in the series this
season with stories about him racing in other series to a secret probation for a marshaling issue during the HO Indy 500. Stay tuned to
see if Heitz is able to get a shot at his second career victory.
Duane Sweeney Memorial Grand Prix Fast Facts
Race date: Thursday, Dec 5
Track: Road Course at Badger Raceway 3.25 mile natural terrain road course in Muskego, WI
Race distance: 20 minutes
IndySlotCar Website: indyslotcar.com
2019 race winner: Mike Lack (No. 1 Angry Squirrel Speedsport)
2918 Firestone P1 Award winner: Mike Lack (No. 1 Angry Squirrel Speedsport)
One-lap qualifying record: Mike Lack, 3.869 seconds, 2017
Race record: Mike Lack, 254 laps, 2019
YouTube Broadcast: IndySlotCar Channel
At-track schedule (all times local):
6:00 – Gates open
6:30 – Driver introductions
7:00 – Drivers meeting
7:05 – IndySlotCar Series Practice
7:30 – Technical inspection
7:35 – Qualifying for the Firestone P1 Award (group qualifying/ fastest single lap)
8:00 – Heat races
8:40 – Duane Sweeney Memorial Grand Prix (20 minutes)
· Mike Lack has won the last five open class races.
· Dan Margetta is coming off his second win of the season, the pole and win at the Turkey Trot was his 50th pole position, extending the series all-time record, as does his 47th career victory.
· Hometown hero Dean Strom takes a three point championship lead over Mike Lack into the seventh round of the season.
· Bill Black has passed John Baas in both Heat Wins and Final Four appearances on the all-time list, moving into 20th in both stats, with 14 and 18 respectively.
DUANE SWEENEY MEMORIAL GRAND PRIX HISTORY (17 events, 2004 - Present)
Date Race Winner Event Name
1/22/2004 Larry Rotter Duane Sweeney Memorial 500 - Edgewood Superspeedway (oval)
12/2/2004 Jim Iverson Duane Sweeney Memorial 500 - Bayside International
12/1/2005 Jim Iverson Duane Sweeney Memorial Grand Prix
11/30/2006 Jim Iverson Duane Sweeney Memorial Grand Prix
11/29/2007 Mark Walczak Duane Sweeney Memorial Grand Prix
12/4/2008 Ev Kamikawa Sweeney Stomp - Road Course at Badger Raceway*
12/3/2009 Mark Walczak Duane Sweeney Memorial Grand Prix
12/2/2010 Mark Walczak Duane Sweeney Memorial Grand Prix
12/1/2011 Mike Lack Duane Sweeney Memorial Grand Prix
11/29/2012 Mark Walczak Duane Sweeney Memorial Grand Prix
12/5/2013 Dean Strom Duane Sweeney Memorial Grand Prix
10/30/2014 Ev Kamikawa Duane Sweeney Memorial Grand Prix
12/3/2015 John Wiedemann Duane Sweeney Memorial Grand Prix
12/15/2016 Dan Margetta Duane Sweeney Memorial Grand Prix
11/30/2017 Dan Margetta Duane Sweeney Memorial Grand Prix
11/29/2018 Mike Lack Duane Sweeney Memorial Grand Prix
12/5/2019 Mike Lack Duane Sweeney Memorial Grand Prix
* - Track was built as Bayside International and moved to become The Road Course at Badger Raceway before December 2008.
Most Wins – Mark Walczak-4; Mike Lack, Jim Iverson-3; Dan Margetta, Ev Kamikawa-2