Lonnie Wheatley, DODGE CITY, Kan.
(September 14, 2017) – Each year, more than 200 drivers take
part in at least some portion of Dodge City Raceway Park
championship chase action with upwards of 100 or so possible on
any given race night.
With Saturday’s Fifth Annual Jerry
Soderberg Memorial Championship event set to bring the curtains
down on the 2017 DCRP title chases, this year is no exception
with 208 drivers having already competed in at least one round
of racing action.
Getting a racecar to the race track isn’t
always an easy task. Any number of factors
can force any racer to miss a night at the track. From
the time of maintenance and the cost to do so, to work
commitments and family commitments, and to any other number of
things that just go hand in hand with the overall life
But, there are some that always find a
way. When the gates open at the track, some
of the same familiar truck and trailer combos soon pull though
those gates regardless of how hot or cold it may be and with a
blind eye to potentially threatening skies.
The following eight drivers could easily
be considered “The Ironmen of DCRP” with the rare race missed
over the past five full seasons of competition atop the 3/8-mile
The Ironmen in terms of active
races-competed-in streaks are as follows…
Tom Reed (Kalvesta, KS), IMCA Hobby Stock
#7 – 61+ Races
The ol’ red No. 7 Hobby Stock has been a
fixture at DCRP in recent years. In fact, the
streak of races-competed-in stands at the very minimum of 61
races with the Kalvesta racer on hand for every event since the
beginning of the 2012 season. Ranked seventh
in points going into Saturday’s finale, Reed has finished among
the top ten over each of the past five years with a three-year
stretch of fifth-place finishes in 2013, 2014 and 2015 his best.
Jesse Smith (Dodge City, KS), IMCA
Modified #01 – 61 Races
Smith is about to finish off his fifth
full season of not missing a race at DCRP with his last absence
62 races back in July of 2012. Going into
Saturday’s finale ninth in points, Smith tries to finish off a
fourth top-ten finish over the past five seasons with a
runner-up finish in 2013 his best season yet.
Jeff Kaup (Woodward, OK), IMCA Sport
Modified #92 – 56 Races
Kaup likely has the 115 mile path from
Woodward to DCRP pretty well memorized, making the journey for
each event since the 2012 season finale. Kaup
has made the most of it by racking up 15 wins among 45 top-fives
and three championships (2013, 2014 and 2015) over those 56
races. He will make it a fourth title in five
years provided he extends the streak to 57 races on Saturday
Kale Beavers (Pierceville, KS), IMCA
Modified #25 – 55 Races
Making the hour-and-a-half round trip for
each event since the onset of the 2013 season, Beavers broke
into victory lane on race number 53 of the streak on July 15.
Going into Saturday’s finale ranked sixth in points,
Beavers needs to gain just 15 points on his closest rival to
rank among the top five for a third-consecutive year after
finishes of seventh in both 2013 and 2014.
Nick Link (Rolla, KS), IMCA Modified #1n –
Making the 200 mile round trip from Rolla,
the reigning track champ has pulled the colorful No. 1n Modified
through the gates for every race since the second event in April
of the 2013 season. After three top-ten
points finishes from 2013 to 2015, Link made the jump from sixth
in 2015 to capture the title on the final night last year.
Just 15 points ahead of third-ranked Kevin Gray, Link
will try to hold on to the second spot in Saturday’s finale.
Marlin Hogie (Ulysses, KS), IMCA Stock Car
#33 – 52 Races
Hogie carries the longest streak in the
Stock Car ranks, having hit the track in the yellow No. 33 for
every race since the beginning of the 2013 season.
With a pair of wins along the way, Hogie will finish off
a fourth season among the top three in points with a runner-up
finish in 2013 his best.
Brian May (Spearville, KS), IMCA Sport
Modified #8 – 50 Races
At the half-century mark after last
missing a race in mid-June of 2013, May looks to finish off his
best season yet after finishing up seventh in both 2013 and 2014
and then fourth in 2015 and 2016. May goes
into Saturday’s finale second in points, though his cushion is
just 3 and 16 points over the Wiens duo of Kyle and then Alex.
Tracy Link (Rolla, MO), IMCA Modified #2L
– 43 Races
The elder of the father-son Link duo from
Rolla, Tracy has hit the track at DCRP with his son each time
since the kickoff of the 2014 season. Picking
up a win on June 17, Link enters Saturday’s finale one spot
outside the top ten but just 23 points or fewer behind three
different drivers as he vies for a fourth consecutive finish
among the top ten in points.
The top five active races-competed-in
streaks going into Saturday’s finale:
Precise Racing Products DCRP Sprint Cars
(DCRP track division since 2015): 1. (tie) Jordan Knight, Tyler
Knight and Kris Moore 28, 4. Taylor Velasquez 23, 5. Brandy
IMCA Modifieds: 1. Jesse Smith 61, 2. Kale
Beavers 55, 3. Nick Link 53, 4. Tracy Link 43, 5. Tom Beavers
IMCA Sport Modifieds: 1. Jeff Kaup 56, 2.
Brian May 50, 3. Kyle Wiens 24, 4. Alex Wiens 20, 5. Joey Maupin
IMCA Stock Cars (Top 3):
1. Marlin Hogie 52, 2. Ondre Rexford 9, 3. Angel Munoz 7.
IMCA Hobby Stocks: 1.
Tom Reed 61+, 2. Matt O’Hair 25, 3. Tyler Walker 20, 4. Duane
Wahrman 16, 5. Reagan Sellard 15.
Saturday’s Fifth Annual Jerry Soderberg
Memorial Championship event features a full slate of Precise
Racing Products DCRP Sprint Cars vs. URSS Sprint Cars, IMCA
Modifieds, IMCA Sport Modifieds, IMCA Stock Cars and IMCA Hobby
Stocks. Racing action goes green at 7:00 p.m.
General admission for Saturday night’s
Fifth Annual Jerry Soderberg Memorial Championship event are
just $20 with children 11 and under admitted free when
accompanied by an adult.
Comfort Suites located at 2700 West Wyatt
Earp Boulevard in Dodge City, KS, is the official lodging
partner of Dodge City Raceway Park. The
Comfort Suites official internet site is located at
Those staying at the Comfort Suites will want to request
the special DCRP rate for their visit.
The 2017 season at Dodge City Raceway Park
consists of 14 scheduled nights of racing action with the
regular season coming to a conclusion with the Saturday night,
September 16, Jerry Soderberg Memorial Championship event.
The complete 2017 schedule of events at
Dodge City Raceway Park is available at
Dodge City Raceway Park is located on the
south edge of Dodge City, KS, on US 283, then 0.9 miles west on
US 56, then 0.1 miles south. For more
information, contact the track at 620-225-3277 or check