Ovadal Jr. Captures First Career Midwest Truck Series Win at Home Track
In a night that saw ups and downs for several in the Midwest Truck Series, John Ovadal Jr. finally had some good luck on his side in the 50 lap Wisconsin State Championship at Jefferson Speedway. Kevin Knuese and AJ Kreager brought the 17-truck field to green, however, contact between Chester Ace and AJ Kreager off turn 4 on lap 2 slowed the field right back down. In the pile off turn 4 was the entire outside line that included two of the three points contenders. Bryce Miller and Levon Van Der Geest both sustained heavy frontend damage. Van Der Geest would be able to make it back out before the green flag dropped, however Miller’s damage only allowed him to record 2 more laps before pulling into the infield.
With the choose cone coming out, Knuese and Joe Valento both took the inside opening the door for Ovadal to lean on his experience at Wisconsin’s Action Track to restart on the outside of the front row. When the green dropped Ovadal was able to clear Knuese and set sail. Back farther in the field James Swan began working his way to the front. Swan would battle with Valento for more than half the race swapping a spot on the podium with the young gun before settling into 4th. Needing some momentum Kenny Joosten came to Jefferson on a mission. After recording the 5th overall fastest lap in practice, Joosten had his best qualifying effort of 2020 with a 2nd and then followed that up with his first top 5 of the season. Joey Pontbriand was glad to visit Jefferson for the second time and recorded his best finish of 2020 in 6th with Jeff Holtz in 7th.
With 2 races to go, Levon Van Der Geest may look at this race as a night that saved his season. After being caught up in the lap 2 incident, Van Der Geest’s crew used tape, rivets and anything else they could find to hold the nose of the #23 together and the hood down allowing Levon to rebound to an 8th place finish. Chester Ace and Craig Phillips rounded out the top 10.
The season championship points battle continues to be action packed. James Swan now holds a 19 point lead over Levon Van Der Geest as Bryce Miller drops two spots to 4th , 31 points back. Joe Valento took what he learned last time at Jefferson in August, and with his podium jumps to 3rd only 30 points back.
The next race for the Midwest Truck Series will be Saturday, October 10th as part of the 51st Oktoberfest Race Weekend.