Wausau, WI – Mark Mackesy joined an elite group Saturday night at State Park Speedway as be became the third driver to win three Larry Detjens Memorial Races. The other two to do it: Dick Trickle and Chris Weinkaful. “This is a special race,” says Mackesy, “And to win it not just once, but three times is something I’m not sure I ever thought I would do. Any time your name is mentioned in the same sentence at Drick Trickle means you’ve done something special and to win this race is truly an awesome feeling.”
While it was Mackesy who got all the attention n River Valley Bank Victory Lane, all eyes were on Chris Wimmer for most of the 150 laps of the 32nd annual Newline Nine Detjens Memorial 150.
It too Wimmer, who started from the fourth position, just 11 laps to work his way to the lead, and once he did, he didn’t look back for a long time. As Wimmer stretched his lead during the first 100 laps all the action was behind him.
The first caution flew 35 laps in and Colin Reffner found himself in the second spot, Jordan Thiel, third, Mark Mackesy fourth, and Mark Eswein fifth.
Th2 52 machine of Wimmer surged to the front again on the restart and behind him the battle heated up. Mackesy, who had been battling Thiel for the third spot, finally made the pass two laps after the green flag dropped again.
Knoblock worked his way from 6th to fourth after the restart, but with 49laps to go got heat from Eswein. Eswein looked inside and grabbed the spot.
Nathan Haseleu was also on the move and with 20laps until the 10minute break at lap 100 Eswein, Knoblock, Haseleu, and fast qualifier Brandon Selle all rode nose to tail for sports 4-7.
Meanwhile up front Mackey chased down the #44 of Colin Reffner and Mackesy wouldn’t have to wait long to take the spot. The caution flew with 17 laps to go until the break and Reffner found himself losing that second spot and going to the back for getting in to Jason Weinkauf and causing him to go around on the backstretch.
Wimmer and Mackesy lined up side by side for the restart and the 52 prevailed this time. As Wimmer grabbed the lead Mackesy had a mirror full of Eswein, who made a charge to take that second spot. As Eswein maneuvered past Mackesy the caution flew again and on the restart Mackesy reclaimed his second position.
Laps before the break at lap 100 Selle challenged Haseleu, who was now in the 4th spot, but the 87 held off the 98 until the caution flew, signaling 100 laps.
Drivers and crews were given ten minutes to make adjustments to their cars and as they did it was Wimmer in the lead, followed by Mackesy, Eswein, Haseleu, and Selle.
When the ten minutes were up cars were back on the ground and ready to go racing. As the field took the green flag Selle went around in turn one. It was a single car incident, but the fast qualifier was forced to give up his fourth position and go to the back.
The green dropped again and Wimmer jumped to the lead. Mackesy and Eswein battled for the second spot for the first 15 laps, until Mackesy took it and they lined up single file.
That’s when Mackesy began to chase down the #52 of Wimmer and with just under 15 laps to go he caught him. The two battled back and forth, high and low for nearly four laps.
Lap traffic stalled Mackey’s move and then with just under ten laps to go Mackey dove under Wimmer in turn four, contact was made that sent Wimmer up the track and Mackesy was able to clear for the spot.
Wimmer didn’t let Mackesy get too far away, but he was never able to make a run back at the #12 machine. Mackesy took the checkered flag and became the third three time winner of the Detjens Memorial Race.
“I really wanted to win that race,” says Wimmer, “The car was awesome all night. After the break it got a little tight. I knew when Mackesy got to me it would be tough to hold him off, but I was hoping I would be able to. I’m glad it was Mark who won and it’s great to see him in victory lane, but I really wanted this one.”
“I knew at the break I had a good car, but I knew Chris did too,” says Mackesy, “We raced eachother hard there and that’s what it’s about. It was a fun race and it’s just such a great feeling to win, especially this one, a race that is so special to me and my family.”
Mark Eswein came home third, Haseleu fourth, and Kyle Genett fifth.