Jeffery Struck of Davenport Iowa wins $10,000 at Charlie Poague Memorial

PLYMOUTH—Offering $10,000 to win drew cars from all over the Midwest to compete at Plymouth Speedway in the Charlie Poague Memorial. Poague was a long time racing competitor, finished sixth in points in 2017 at Plymouth Speedway, who passed away recently. With over 5o Super Street cars signing in to compete the Super Street the stands were fun of fans to see who would take home the big check.

Those thousands of fans were not disappointed as the Super Streets battled through six heats, two C features and a B Feature to determine who the 24 starters for the 40 lap A Feature. The top qualifiers and heat winners also ran a Dash for a full night of Street Stock racing.

It became obvious early in the evening that there were a hand full of cars that were fast and it would be among them to keep themselves out of trouble to stand on the top of the podium.

A couple of fast cars had issues in the heats mixing up the starting grid but for the most part the contenders all had themselves starting at the front of the field.

On the pole was Jeffery Struck Jr. of Davenport, Iowa, in the Vondresky powered 4S. After qualifying fourth quickest Struck went on to win everything he lined up for Saturday. He won his heat, the dash and would go on to win the $10,000 for the Feature.

But he was battled tough in the Feature by Gary’s Shaun Wiltjer, 2017 Plymouth Track Champion, in the red and gold 1 car. David Short, 2015 Plymouth Track Champion, of Winamac finished third a couple of car lengths off the pace.

Struck started on the pole along side Jeremy Nichols, of Lovington, Ill., with Wiltjer and Ron Wilkes one row behind.

The start and restarts seemed to be the toughest part of the race for Struck as it took several laps for the 4S to get sorted out often losing a place or two until he could find the line that worked for him. On the start he dropped back and was racing for fourth when he was able to get to the edge of the cushion passing two cars in one corner and finding himself in the lead by the end of the lap.

Struck lead Wiltjer by several car lengths as lapped traffic started to become an issue. A yellow sorted out the field again and Wiltjer was starting on Struck’s tail.

Wiltjer and Struck entertained the crowd trading places several times with Struck working the cushion and Wiltjer on the bottom with plenty of bite to make the short path around the track work.

Struck went on to win with Wiltjer not far behind as lapped traffic again becoming an issue as the laps ran out.

The two drivers traded compliments on the clean door to door racing on the winners podium. David Short wasn’t feeling well days before the race and while happy to be on the podium it was a tough physical battle for a driver not at 100 percent.

The other five regular points classes were also in action providing a full night of racing.

Several regulars of the UMP Modified were absent busy at a regional event but 20 Modified still started the A Feature with Zeke McKenzie from Claypool Ind. collecting the win. McKenzie shared the podium with South Bend’s Bobby Stremme and Dylan Woodling from Warsaw. Bradley Jameson, of Logansport, started fifth and was able to get past D.J. Streeter, of Hobart, late in the event to get fourth. D.J. Streeter returned to the racing action late in the season finished a very competitive fifth place.

The Pro-Sprints A Feature was won by Eli Lakin of Buchanan, Mich., his second of the season. Garrett Saunders, of Lakeville, finishes in second and the hard charger moving from a fifth place start. Eric Saunders, also from Lakeville, rounds out the podium and Osceola’s John Gurley finishes just off the podium in fourth after winning the heat race.

Again this week a very competitive field of 600 Mini-Sprints ran a 10 car B main to fill out the 20 car A Feature.

Garrett Saunders drew the pole position and capitalized on the clear track to take a new car to victory over garage mate Chad Hartzell, of Granger. Ed Cleveland, Plymouth, survived a charge from a tenth starting spot to finish third. The hard charger of the race would go to Austin Hunter of Kokomo with a sixth place finish from his 17th place starting position.

Thunder Stocks provided an exciting feature with 19 cars taking the green flag. An early accident that had Wade Clemmons of Hobart, rolling over once, took out four and another three car accident took out a couple more combined with several flats left the field half its starting size.

Bryan Banta, South Bend, brought the number 7 home with four good tires and the win. Hobart’s Kevin Kerlin finished second and Shane Sanders from South Bend gets a rare podium finish in 2018 working out the bugs in a new ride.

The Great Lakes Super Sprints makes their return to Plymouth Speedway Saturday. This winged sprint car series features drivers from throughout the Midwest, several from local area and never fails to entertain with close exciting racing in these high speed winged cars.

The 600 Mini-Sprints will also run their makeup feature from the July 20 show that got rained out.

Photos Attached: Photos by Greg Hildebrand

Dena Poague, widow of Charlie Poague, presents the winners $10,000 dollar check to Jeffery Struck Jr. of Davenport, Iowa. Struck won the 40 lap feature over a field of 58 Super Street cars that traveled to Plymouth Speedway in Plymouth Indiana.