It's been 10 years since the Wissota A-Modifieds roared around Bemidji Speedway's ¼-mile oval but they returned to the track Sunday for the "Open Wheeled Sizzler Special."
Making the Sizzler Special an even bigger event was NASCAR legend Kenny Schrader who joined the racing field in his own A-Modified.
Schrader's racing team is based in Missouri but is in the middle of a tour of Midwest race tracks. Prior to his stop in Bemidji Schrader raced in Fergus Falls and Hibbing. On Mondy he headed to Canada for another race.
"My daddy raced," Schrader said about his introduction to racing.
A steady flow of drivers and crew members visited Schrader Sunday and during the intermission he greeted the largest crowd of the season, signing autographs and offering hugs and handshakes.
With the skies threatening to put a dampener on a great night of racing the racing schedule was adjusted moving the A-Modified feature to the beginning of the schedule. Great track conditions had fans anticipating a fun and exciting race.
The 25-lap feature began with 17 cars in the field and Ken Schrader in row two outside. Jeff Hart took the initial lead and Schrader eventually powered into second. After four cautions and restarts Hart hung on for the win and received a thumbs-up from Schrader who placed second.
A small field of Streets was led on track by Dustin Puffe and Scotty Messner but after a restart Doug VanMill gained the top spot. VanMill maintained that postion the rest of the way while Messner finished second.
A great field of 21 Midwest Modifieds filled the track led by Brandon Bahr and Adam Grejesky. With the rain continuing to fall Dan Ebert took over first place from his third-row start.
A multi-car crash in turn two slowed the massive field for a restart sending numerous cars to the pits for repairs. The restart was led by Ebert with Grejesky in second. A short time later the rain and worsening track conditions forced another caution.
Ebert maintained his front position through the restarts and crossed the finish line with a one-third lap lead over Bahr.
The races were halted due to very wet track conditions and the Mod Four feature will be made up next Sunday night.