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Jensen rolls to USMTS ‘Hunt’ win at Rice Lake
posted: Aug 21, 2012 11:30:11
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RICE LAKE, Wis. -- The United States Modified Touring Series rolled into the Rice Lake Speedway Thursday night for round 6 of the Hunt for the USMTS Casey’s Cup, and Joey Jensen of Forest Lake, Minn., rolled out with his third victory of the season and a $3,000 paycheck.

Johnny Scott took the lead at the drop of the green flag to kick off the 40-lap Swan Energy “A” Main with polesitter Daniel Hilsabeck following close behind. Five laps later, the rookie driver from Waukee, Iowa, wrestled the top spot away from Scott to lead his first lap in a USMTS feature race.

Scott regained the lead with nine laps complete. Meanwhile, Jensen was hounding the leaders with Ryan Ruter, Kelly Shryock, Adam Hensel and Rodney Sanders all within striking distance.

Jensen made his move after the tenth lap and took control as they wrapped up the eleventh orbit around the 3/8-mile clay oval. Scott fought back, but his bid for the lead ended two laps later when mechanical woes sidelined the Las Cruces, N.M., racer.

Although the field remained close behind, Jensen continued to set the pace through lap 35 when caution waved to set up a five-lap dash to the finish with Sanders and 15th-starting Ryan Gustin on his rear bumper.

With Jensen running the middle groove, Sanders used the low line to duck underneath Jensen on several occasions while Gustin looked for a faster line around the high side of the racing surface. With the white flag waving, Sanders edged in front of Jensen as they streaked down the back-stretch but Jensen pulled blasted back ahead in the final turn and beat ‘The Rocket’ to the finish line by half of a car-length.

Gustin settled for third while another rookie USMTS pilot, Adam Hensel, claimed the fourth spot ahead of Hilsabeck at the checkered flag.

Jason Cummins steered the Cheetos machine from 12th to sixth, Jason Miller came from 14th to secure the seventh spot and Shryock held on for an eighth-place finish. Zack VanderBeek was ninth and Dereck Ramirez rounded out the top 10.

Stormy Scott finished 11 after starting 24 and earned the Mesilla Valley Transportation Hard Charger Award. His younger twin brother got the Dominator Race Products Hard Luck Award.