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Rich Bickle Jr. poses in victory late after winning the season-opening super late model stock car feature race at Illinois’ Grundy County Speedway Friday night. (Stan Kalwasinski Photo)

Rich Bickle Is Still Fast At Grundy County

MORRIS, Ill. — Picking a race here and there to compete in, Rich Bickle Jr., the semi-retired speedster from Edgerton, Wis., came home the winner of the season-opening 40-lap super late model stock car feature race at Grundy County Speedway Friday night as the speedway hosted Chicago White Sox Night.

Missing the power from one or two cylinders, Bickle hung on and wheeled his Tony D’Ambrose-wrenched Chevrolet No. 45 to the win at the third-mile paved oval.  Bickle, the evening’s fastest qualifier, finished 0.457 seconds ahead of former track champion D.J. Weltmeyer.  Eight-time late model titlist Eddie Hoffman finished third followed by Blake Brown and a recovering Ricky Baker, who came back from a tangle with Clay Curts with 10 laps to go.

Matt Clemens was the winner of the 25-lap sportsman headliner, besting Ron Vandermeir Jr. and Cameron Priesler.  Dan Schmeissing won the 15-lap pure stock (four-cylinder) main event ahead of Zach Legner and Landon Hocking.  David Einhaus claimed top honors in the 15-lap feature for Crown Vic competitors. 

Jimmy Anderson captured the 20-lap headliner for the Midwest Mayhem Midgets.  Anderson, out of the winner’s circle for six years or so, drove the David Ward-owned No. 1 to the win ahead of early race leaders Tom Schnabel and Doug Orseske.  C.J. Macaluso escaped injury in an end over flip after getting tangled up with two spun cars.