Wausau, WI – Next up at State Park Speedway is the Ropa’s Pizza Flip Merwin Memorial on Thursday, June 20th. This also begins race one of the Auto Select Triple X Challenge, in which State Park Speedway will shell out $15,000 to any driver that can win the Ropa’s Pizza Flip Merwin Memorial, the Newsline Nine Detjens Memorial 125 and the Lodi Memorial. “We really wanted to do something big,” says State Park Speedway Owner Ron Wimmer, “Our three memorial races are typically our biggest events of the year, outside of the ARCA Midwest Tour, and we thought it would be neat to put up a big prize and a challenge to all the drivers out there to see if someone can come and win all three. If someone can pull it off they will be walking away with almost $20,000 in total winnings, including the $15,000 bonus, the $1,000 elimination bonus and the winnings from each of the three individual races.”
This marks the first time State Park Speedway has put together an event of this magnitude and it will draw some of the biggest names in Wisconsin short track racing. ARCA Midwest Tour regulars Nathan Haseleu and Chris Wimmer are just a couple outside drivers who have committed to trying their hand at the Auto Select Triple X Challenge. “I run the Detjens events every year,” says Nathan Haseleu, “So when I heard about this, it was like why not give it a shot. We are going to race the first two and then see where we are at. It’s a cool deal that they’ve put together and should generate a lot of excitement, especially if someone can win those first two events.”
Over the past four years no driver has won all three memorial events, but in 2010 Chris Weinkauf took the checkered flag in both the Flip Merwin Memorial and the Detjens Memorial. “There is definitely the possibility that someone might be able to do this,” says Scott Wimmer, “Aside from guys like Haseleu or Wimmer who will come race, a guy like Mark Mackesy, Neil Knoblock or Weinkauf, who have been racing at State Park Speedway for years could make a run of it. It will be exciting to see who wins the Ropa’s Pizza Flip Merwin Memorial and that driver will definitely have all eyes on him going into the Detjens Memorial a few weeks later.”
In additional to a possible $15,000 pay day for one driver, three drivers will each take home extra cash in an elimination style challenge. Each of these three events will start 24 cars. The top 12 finishers in the first of the three events, the Ropa’s Pizza Flip Merwin Memorial, will be eligible to continue the challenge and receive bonus money. Following the second event, the Newsline Nine Detjens Memorial 125, the top six finishers of those 12 will continue to be eligible going into the final event, the Lodi Memorial Race. At the conclusion of the Lodi Memorial race the top three finishers of those six will receive bonus money of $1,000, $750 and $500 respectively. “We really wanted to do something different and make it so there were a number of drivers eligible for the bonus going into that final race,” says Scott Wimmer, “The chance to win the $15,000 will make it interesting, but this will give a bunch of drivers a chance at the bonus and it will be fun for fans to follow along as drivers get eliminated.”
The Ropa’s Pizza Flip Merwin Memorial will consist of a 10-lap C-Tech Super Late Model feature with a competition caution at lap 75. The Budweiser/Fabiano Brothers Limited Late Modes, Marathon Parts City Pure Stocks, Snap-On Mini-Mods, Motors Service and Supply Mini-Stocks and Kreager Insurance Bandoloers will all also compete. Pit gates open at 2:30pm, fan gates at 4:30pm, Fred Mueller Qualifying takes place at 6:30pm and racing begins at 7:30pm. A full schedule will be available soon on stateparkspeedway.com.
All drivers who make the 24 car field for the Ropa’s Pizza Flip Merwin Memorial will be eligible to compete in the Triple X Challenge and the winner of that event will have a shot at a possible $16,000 pay day. For questions regarding the Auto Select Triple X Challenge please email firstname.lastname@example.org.