Waelti Takes BMARA Checkers Just in Time at Angell Park Speedway


Badger Midget Auto Racing Association

Waelti Takes BMARA Checkers Just in Time at Angell Park Speedway

Brandon Waelti became the first repeat winner in Advanced Fastening Supply Badger Midget Auto Racing Association action on the 2024 season, as the series was back home at Sun Prairie, Wisconsin's, Angell Park Speedway. The race was billed as "The Norm Nelson Classic." it could have been dubbed, "Sun Prairie Night," as hometown drivers faired well throughout the evening and swept the podium for the A-Main.


Employing the group qualifying method, Badger sent out several flights of cars at once for qualifying/hot laps. Of the 26 cars signed in, 25 took a time with Sun Prairie's, Todd Kluever earning FIVEone Motorsports Fast Time honors running a 16.540. This was .08 seconds faster than runner-up, Parker Jones.


Sun Prairie driver, Nick Kilian took the lead at the drop of the green for Auto Meter Heat 1. By the time they arrived at the start/finish line, Kyle Stark passed Kilian for the lead and at the middle of the backstretch, Cody Weisensel blew by Stark. Weisensel, a Sun Prairie native, easily won followed by Stark, Kilian and another hometown driver, Eric Blumer. Nathan Crane, a regular with the Wisconsin wingLESS Sprint Car Series, took the last transfer spot to the feature, in his first full night in a midget.

Simpson Race Products Heat 2 saw Jake Goeglein jump to the point only to have Derek Doerr and Kevin Douglas go high and low around him on the far straightaway. Doerr sailed to victory from there. Behind him, Douglas ran a solid race protecting the preferred bottom groove. Matt Rechek was on his tail for most of the race and if Douglas slipped up, Recheck ducked under only to have Douglas slam the door. With a couple to go, it appeared Recheck and Jones decided to file in as they had transfer spots locked up. LaMont Critchett rounded out the top-five.

At the drop of the green for Behling Racing Equipment Heat 3, Daniel Robinson beat Trey Weishoff into turn-two, with Robinson taking a commanding lead. Waelti took a while to break from the pack, but caught Robinson at the end. Waelti was strong in the corners, but Robinson commanded the straight and nipped Waelti in the end.

For the High Performance Lubricants B-Main, Dave Collins Jr. shot from the pole position and never looked back to take the win. MIles Doherty came from the seventh spot to finish third and secure a start in the feature. Rookie, Tim Patton, had never raced a car before the night started and earned his way into the A-Main with a seventh place finish.


Racing lost a great friend when Badger's sister organization, the Midget Auto Racing Association learned that MARA official Bill Shipman passed away in a car crash on his way to work Friday's MARA show. To start the Badger Feature, the field remembered him with their traditional four-wide salute, minus the pole sitting car.

When the race started Waelti took off from the outside of the second row and had the point in short order. Parker Jones, from his fifth starting spot was soon on his tail. It only took seven circuits for Waelti to catch the first lapped car. Unaware that the leader was there, Patton swerved a bit, just racing himself and the track. Catching Waelti by surprise, the two touched sending Patton flipping. He landed on his side at the track entrance. Patton popped out and was alright. In a bit of foreshadowing, announcer Eric Huenefeld wondered if Waelti's car might have been affected by the contact.

The restart had the cars in this order: Waelti, Jones, Crane, Weisensel and Kluever. It looked like it could be another freight train-type race with all but a couple of midgets running tight to the bottom at this point. But when racing resumed it opened up a bit, with cars using both the bottom and a weak cushion about a lane and a half higher.

At the half-way marker of the 25 lap event, it was still Waelti over Jones. With ten to go, Jones got by Waelti at the line and appeared to be sailing to his third win in three midget races. After another circuit, lapped traffic was encountered. This proved to be no deterrent for Jones as with five to go he led by half a straightaway.

The next lap the Jones car had a catastrophic failure heard by the entire park. With a "boom" his engine detonated in a cloud of white smoke. Coming to a rest on the backstretch, Jones could be seen looking under the car for telltale oil, but no fluid was found to be leaking. The car was towed into the pits and his night was done.

Waelti was in first once again. Crane was now in the runner up spot followed by Kluever and the top BMARA point man of the bunch, Weisensel. On the green, Crain's car faltered, bunching everyone behind him briefly. He was able to stay out of harm's way and pulled into the pits without causing a caution.

This proved beneficial to Waelti, who went on substantially unchallenged for the win. But as he passed the dual checkers, his throttle cable snapped and the butterflies on his carbs stuck open. The veteran knew what to do and hit the kill switch, thus slowing the car down in turn-one. Had there been another yellow, Waelti may not have finished the race.

Kluever finished second and Weisensel was third. Weisensel unofficially takes over the BMARA point lead from Kyle Stark.

In Bank of Sun Prairie Victory Lane it was noted that this was Waelti's 20th Lyco Manufacturing Inc. A-Main win and that he has the most wins of any active BMARA driver. Responding to Huenefeld's suggestion that it doesn't get any easier, Waelti replied, "The older I get the harder it is."


The Madison Extinguisher Service Last Chance Qualifier and the VMS Rod Ends Heat 4 were not run at this event.

RJ Corson was awarded the Last Place Bonus in Loving memory of Addison Dahlke and Hammers Auto Service Shop and Midwest Engine Service Hard Luck Award. A feature winner at Sycamore earlier in the year, he chased electrical gremlins all night.

Luke Wackerlin took home the Spankins Motorsports Rookie of the Race.

Kluever took home the Schoenfeld Headers Invert Draw Award.


When told fans could hear his engine pop from the stands, Jones said with a grin, "If you thought it was loud, you should have been in the car. It felt it under my seat." He went on to say there was no liquid coming from it and they had not diagnosed the issue, yet.

It was all smiles in the Fanaktive pit despite the car of rookie Patton having a bent frame after his flip. He was fine and owner Trey Weishoff was overheard saying, "I'm just glad you are alright and had fun." Patton has been on the crew for four years, according to a Facebook post and this was his first run in a midget. As for the boss, Weishoff, of Sun Prairie, had his career best finish at sixth and earned the Advanced Racing Suspensions ASM Performance, Bob Tattersall Hard Charger Award, as he gained nine positions on the night.

Adam Taylor was missing as he was racing with USAC. We know off hand he scored a semi-feature win during the week.

Of the 26 midgets on hand six drivers signed in from Sun Prairie.


Badger has next weekend off and will resume racing on Saturday, June 22, at the Plymouth Dirt Track where they highlight a card that includes three local classes. The following night, the AFS Badger Midget Series is back home at Angell Park Speedway for Kevins' Klassic where they will share the card with the USAC Sprint Cars.


Advanced Fastening Supply A - Feature (25 Laps): 1. 3W-Brandon Waelti[3]; 2. 55-Todd Kluever[6]; 3. 20-Cody Weisensel[4]; 4. 38-Matt Rechek[7]; 5. 57A-Daniel Robinson[9]; 6. 45-Trey Weishoff[15]; 7. 44-Lamont Critchett[2]; 8. 20D-Derek Doerr[10]; 9. 17-Nick Kilian[13]; 10. 8-Jake Goeglein[19]; 11. 5K-Kevin Douglas[12]; 12. 59-Kyle Koch[20]; 13. 40JR-Dave Collins Jr[16]; 14. (DNF) 31-Nathan Crane[1]; 15. (DNF) 41-Parker Jones[5]; 16. (DNF) 53M-Miles Doherty[18]; 17. (DNF) 73W-Luke Wackerlin[17]; 18. (DNF) 98-Jordan Nelson[14]; 19. (DNF) 68-Eric Blumer[11]; 20. (DNF) 75P-Tim Patten[22]; 21. (DNF) 2-Kyle Stark[8]; 22. (DNF) 15C-RJ Corson[21]

High Performance Lubricants B - Feature (10 Laps): 1. 40JR-Dave Collins Jr[1]; 2. 73W-Luke Wackerlin[3]; 3. 53M-Miles Doherty[7]; 4. 8-Jake Goeglein[2]; 5. 59-Kyle Koch[6]; 6. 15C-RJ Corson[5]; 7. 75P-Tim Patten[10]; 8. 90-Joel Willman[9]; 9. (DNF) 7F-Aaron Fiscus[4]; 10. (DNS) 29-Harrison Kleven; 11. (DNS) 51C-Brok Clifcorn

Auto Meter Heat 1 (8 Laps): 1. 20-Cody Weisensel[7]; 2. 2-Kyle Stark[5]; 3. 17-Nick Kilian[2]; 4. 68-Eric Blumer[4]; 5. 31-Nathan Crane[6]; 6. 90-Joel Willman[8]; 7. (DNF) 15C-RJ Corson[1]; 8. (DNS) 59-Kyle Koch

Madison Extinguisher Service Heat 2 (8 Laps): 1. 20D-Derek Doerr[4]; 2. 5K-Kevin Douglas[3]; 3. 38-Matt Rechek[5]; 4. 41-Parker Jones[7]; 5. 44-Lamont Critchett[6]; 6. 8-Jake Goeglein[1]; 7. 75P-Tim Patten[9]; 8. 51C-Brok Clifcorn[8]; 9. (DNF) 29-Harrison Kleven[2]

Behlings Race Products Heat 3 (8 Laps): 1. 57A-Daniel Robinson[5]; 2. 3W-Brandon Waelti[7]; 3. 55-Todd Kluever[8]; 4. 98-Jordan Nelson[2]; 5. 45-Trey Weishoff[1]; 6. 40JR-Dave Collins Jr[3]; 7. 73W-Luke Wackerlin[6]; 8. 7F-Aaron Fiscus[4]; 9. 53M-Miles Doherty[9]; 10. 59-Kyle Koch

FiveOne Motorsports Fast Time Schoenfeld Qualifying (50 Laps): 1. 55-Todd Kluever, 00:16.540[9]; 2. 41-Parker Jones, 00:16.628[11]; 3. 20-Cody Weisensel, 00:16.788[4]; 4. 3W-Brandon Waelti, 00:16.872[5]; 5. 44-Lamont Critchett, 00:16.963[7]; 6. 31-Nathan Crane, 00:16.978[10]; 7. 73W-Luke Wackerlin, 00:16.994[17]; 8. 38-Matt Rechek, 00:17.007[18]; 9. 2-Kyle Stark, 00:17.022[22]; 10. 57A-Daniel Robinson, 00:17.035[12]; 11. 20D-Derek Doerr, 00:17.273[19]; 12. 68-Eric Blumer, 00:17.294[8]; 13. 7F-Aaron Fiscus, 00:17.310[2]; 14. 5K-Kevin Douglas, 00:17.347[1]; 15. 59-Kyle Koch, 00:17.449[25]; 16. 40JR-Dave Collins Jr, 00:17.478[14]; 17. 29-Harrison Kleven, 00:17.502[24]; 18. 17-Nick Kilian, 00:17.557[26]; 19. 98-Jordan Nelson, 00:17.565[23]; 20. 51C-Brok Clifcorn, 00:17.600[15]; 21. 15C-RJ Corson, 00:17.746[20]; 22. 45-Trey Weishoff, 00:17.770[21]; 23. 8-Jake Goeglein, 00:18.172[3]; 24. 90-Joel Willman, 00:18.249[6]; 25. 75P-Tim Patten, 00:18.376[13]; 26. (DNF) 53M-Miles Doherty, 00:18.376[16]

Photo credits: Roy Ophime and Bill Blumer Jr.
Article credit: Bill Blumer Jr. (Badger Media Representative)

Submitted By: William Blumer

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