2021-22 Round 14

March Madness - Black Track - Jackson, WI

March 17, 2022

Round 14 of 16

2022 March Madness

Heitz Triumphs Over The Madness At Black Track

Jackson, WI – March Madness came to The Black Track and took hold IndySlotCar style. Joe Heitz rose above the Madness on the high-banked track and defeated the field to capture his second win of the season.

Qualifying set the seeding of the bracket for a driver vs driver battle to the final. Brad Core, who made his first final appearance at the Black Track earlier this season, scored his first career pole, with the fastest lap and a four-lap time of 5.616 seconds, beating his CBD Racing teammate Bill Black's time of 5.658 seconds. Michael Shank-It Racing teammates Mike Kristof and Joe Heitz filled out the top four qualifiers.

Round One of the brackets went true to form with the favorites beating the underdogs in the one-minute races. The marquee match-up was the two Husarsbilt Cup championship contenders Dean Strom and Mike Lack, who faced off in the eight vs nine seeds, Strom advanced without much of a struggle leaving Lack's #27 Angry Squirrel Speedsport entry ninth for the event. The five-seed of Dan Margetta defeated 12th seed John Wiedemann, defending Madness champion Steve Rist, the six defeated 11 Ev Kamikawa, seventh seed Matt Hayek took down 10th seeded Pete Dorn.

In the Quarter-Finals, polesitter Core knocked off Strom, that left the Squirrel Shagged Enterprises #1 car seventh overall for the night. Fourth seeded Heitz #06 defeated the #48 MisFitz Motorsports of Margetta. Then it was the underdogs turn with Hayek knocking off hometown favorite Black, the two seed, and Rist upsetting third seeded Kristof.

The Semi-Finals were solid battles with Heitz running even with Core in the first half but then hammering the throttle in the second half to win by a seven lap margin. In the other Semi, a strong running Hayek was down by two laps to Rist halfway through but then made those laps up in the second half as the two battled to the finish in the closest race of the evening. As time was running out Rist spun allowing Hayek to grab the lead as both drivers finished on the same lap.

The final would prove to be a walk in the park for Heitz. Hayek’s car had used up all the speed it had coming all the way from the first round and was no match for the pace run by Michael Shank-It AutoNation SiriusXM entry. Neither driver had pit stop issues and Heitz kept it clean in the second half to take the victory by 19 laps. The victory was the third of Heitz’s IndySlotCar career.

With Strom finishing two spots ahead of Lack, he continues to chip away at the point lead. Lack is now down to a 13 points edge with two races left in the season. Kristof finished three positions ahead of Black as they battle for third in the standings. Kristof leads by 15 points. Wiedemann remains in fifth place. Hayek, with top-three finishes in the last three races, has moved into sixth place in the standings.

Up next in two weeks is The Shrine Cup, the penultimate race of the season. Mike Lack is the two time defending champion of this race.


March Madness Fast Facts

Race date: Thursday, Mar 17

Track: The Black Track, 7/8 mile high-banked oval, Jackson, WI

Race distance: 10 minutes

Twitter: @indyslotcar

IndySlotCar Website: indyslotcar.com

2021 race winner: Steve Rist (No. 4 Squirrel Shagged Enterprises)

2021 Firestone P1 Award winner: Steve Rist (No. 4 Squirrel Shagged Enterprises)

Single lap record: Dean Strom 1.295 seconds – 2020, Mike Lack 1.295 seconds, 2021 (Feb)

4-laps qualifying record: Dean Strom 5.226 seconds – 2020, Mike Lack 5.226 seconds, 2021 (Feb)

YouTube Broadcast: IndySlotCar Channel

At-track schedule (all times local):

6:00 – Gates open

6:30 – Driver introductions

7:00 – Drivers meeting/ Chassis distribution

7:05 – IndySlotCar Series Practice

7:25 – Qualifying for the Firestone P1 Award (single car qualifying/ fastest four lap total)

7:55 – First Round of bracket racing

8:55 – Head to head final (8 minutes)

Race Notes:

· Once again the IndySlotCar Series uses the special match-style format for the race that coincides with the opening night of the NCAA Men’s Basketball tournament.

· Steve Rist is the defending March Madness winner, including winning from the pole position.

· Speaking of the Pole-to-Win, the prize fund has now reached 76,000 IndySlotCar bucks!

· With Dean Strom’s win at the Rotter Memorial GP, he now trails Mike Lack by 17 points for the Husarsbilt Cup championship.

· STAT WATCH: There hasn’t been an oval race since the Jackson 500 on this same Black Track in November, Matt Hayek leads the Oval Track championship by one point over Bill Black. Strom’s win at Turtle Creek Park Raceway is the 17th of his career, matching his former teammate and Hall of Famer Jim Iverson’s total, tied for tenth all-time. John Wiedemann moves in to the top five in Heat Wins with 73. Matt Hayek passes Jim Kaehny’s career lap total, moving to ninth all time with 37,384. Steve Rist elevates to 27th on the all-time starts list with 36, ahead of Jim Kaluzny. Mike Lack’s DNF at the Rotter Memorial GP was the 31st of his career moving up to seventh, breaking a three way tie he shared with Larry Rotter and Jim Kaehny. Pete Dorn’s DNF was his 12th, equaling Joe Heitz in 23rd all-time.

Bracket events HISTORY (7 events, 1996 - Present)

Year Race Winner Event Title Track

2/15/1996 Phil Cianciola In Style Valentine's Challenge Shrine Road Course

2/13/1997 Phil Cianciola In-Style Pro Shop Valentine's Challenge Shrine Road Course

2/12/1998 Jim Kaehny Dean Foods Valentine's Challenge Shrine Road Course

2/13/2003 Jim Kaehny Palermo's Valentine's 200 Shrine Road Course

3/19/2015 Mike Lack March Madness Badger Raceway

3/19/2020 John Wiedemann March Madness Bermuda Raceway

3/18/2021 Steve Rist March Madness Rapids Oval