5th Anniversary Season concludes
with Golden Sands awards banquet!

By Amy Kolo

October 23, 1999; Wisconsin Rapids, WI: - Welcome to the Super 5th Anniversary Golden Sands Speedway Driver’s Banquet. The top fifteen in the Super Late Model, Super Stock, and Pure Stocks will all receive trophies for their recognition in an excellent 1999 racing season. These are the last season champions for the 1900’s. Who will be crowned season champion in the new millennium?

The 2000 racing season brings many anxious fans and drivers waiting to see who will prevail. The champions of the 2000 racing season will have an extra bonus, by having an additional title as the first champions of the new millennium. But the champions from this 1999 racing season also hold an extra title as the last champions of this millennium.

9399f.jpg (20131 bytes) Mark Eswein (#71) has a fantastic season scoring his first career championship by topping the Super Late Model division here at Golden Sands Speedway.

This season started off with a bang as Golden Sands Speedway started its own Super Late Model point fund. A big thank you goes out to all those who helped make the point fund possible. Thanks to Rainbow Casino and Bingo, Carquest, ARP Racing Bodies, Coleman Chassis, Rander Car Chassis, Diamond Race Wheels, Goodyear Tires, B&B Racing Engines, Wagner Automotive, Five Star Bodies, Bassett Racing Wheels, Koch Petroleum, Aero Racing Wheels, and Snap On Tools. The point fund amounted over $30,0000.00 in cash and contingencies.

As the 1999 racing season commenced it looked like a number of different late model drivers were able to take the top position. Jeremy Lepak was the first late model ever to win the Hot N’ Now Ultimate Challenge. The Ultimate Challenge consists of the late model fast timer opting to start at the back of the pack. If the fast timer then proceeds to win the race, they get to take whatever is in the Challenge Pot home. Hot N’ Now put a $100.00 every week into the pot.

Jeremy ran away with fast time, on many different occasions. The very first race of the season saw the track record broke seven different times. Greg Weinfurter walked away on the first race with a 12.066. But that was only something to shoot at for the rest of the drivers. By the end of the racing season, Jeremy Lepak became the new track record holder with an 11.679.

Congratulations to all fast timers throughout the year: Jeremy Lepak, Greg Weinfurter, Burton Brown, Mark Eswein, Terry Schoppenhorst, Chris Wimmer, and Monte Gress. Only ten different drivers took home feature trophies throughout the year. Congratulations to Mark Eswein, Doug Drost, Greg Weinfurter, Kirby Kurth, Burton Brown, Todd Stapleman, Monte Gress, Jeremy Lepak, Jeff Weinfurter, and Chris Wimmer.

At the end of it all only one driver can walk away the ultimate victor and that was Wisconsin Rapids’ very own Mark Eswein. Mark had an awesome year. He won six different feature titles and was able to pull fast time on several different occasions. His finishes were almost always in the top ten as he held on consistently. Mark would like to thank all his fans, pit crew, sponsors, and his wife Missy, for making all of this possible. Mark enjoys racing immensely. He even has been on the pit crew for NASCAR Super Truck driver, Bryan Reffner. Mark has had tons of experience in racing and has proven it this year. Mark looks forward to the 2000-racing season and looks to take another season championship home.

The Super Stocks provided some of the most exciting racing action during this 1999 racing season. This season started out pretty much the same as the 1998 racing season, with the race between the Jason’s’. Jason Szymkowiak and Jason Kirsling battled it out last season with Kirsling being the victor.

Jason Szymkowiak (#17) who narrowly missed the Super Stock title here at Golden Sands in 1998 when he finished second, improved upon that mark this season and won his first championship title on the high-banked third mile paved oval. 9399c.jpg (15771 bytes)

This year Szymkowiak was ready to give Kirsling a run for his money, but Kirsling started a new job and found himself traveling all over the country. Kirsling tried to make it back every Friday night that he could. But missed quite a few races. Kirsling still pulled off an amazing eighth place season finish. Great job for missing so many races. With Kirsling out of the main contention. Cale Laessig and Shawn Stelzer kept Jason Szymkowiak on his toes.

Jason Szymkowiak not only reigned as the 1999 season champion, but he also was the only Super Stock to take the Letter-Perfect Challenge home. The Letter Perfect Challenge mirrors the Super Late Model’s Ultimate Challenge. Congratulations to all fast timers throughout the year: Jason Kirsling, Jason Szymkowiak, Chad Brundidge, Randy Storlie, Shawn Stelzer, Keith Bohmsach, and Mike Doughty. Just like in the late model division, only ten different super stock drivers took home feature trophies. Congratulations to Cale Laessig, Randy Storlie, Jason Szymkowiak, Gary Wosick, Judd Brandl, Shawn Stelzer, David Pagels, Jason Kirsling, Jim Cormack, and Kevin Peterson.

Winning the season championship means a lot to Jason Szymkowiak. It was his last big goal to accomplish in his super stock career. For the new millennium, Jason is moving up to the Super Late Model division. Jason would also like to thank his fans, sponsors, crew and family for making all his racing possible. Without all their help and support he would not have been able to do it.

Golden Sands Speedway’s beginning racing division is the pure stocks. The pure stocks see many new drivers year after year. Drivers mostly always start out in the pure stock division and work their way up into the higher divisions. Drivers sometimes just stay in the pure stock division because of the low cost.

Each year the track champion in the pure stock division must move up to the super stock division or higher division. The race for the championship was very tight all year long. Mike Brooks and Marv Flick were always just a few points apart from each other. You never knew week to week who was going to come out the victor. Mike wanted the championship bad, he had plans to move up into the super stock division, whether he claimed the title or not.

But it was his last and final goal to reach, just like Jason Szymkowiak. And Mike was able to pull it off. Marv gave Mike the run for his money all year long, and made Mike work hard for his new title. Good luck to all the new drivers learning the sport and congratulations to some of the new drivers that held off some of the veteran drivers for heat and dash wins. The pure stock fast timers for the year were: Jeff Gruber, Mike Brooks, Marv Flick, Roland Kuhn, Brad Scholze, and John Matthews. Congratulations to all the feature winners throughout the year: Mike Brooks, Jeff Gruber, Marv Flick, Brad Scholze, Roland Kuhn, and John Matthews.

9399e.jpg (15898 bytes) Mike Brooks (#22) fought hard all season long with rival Marv Flick for the Pure Stock title.  In the end Brooks would wind up with his first craeer championship.  Brooks will now move up to the Super Stock division for the 2000 season.

As the new 1999 Pure Stock Champion, Mike would like to thank his fans, sponsors, pit crew, and family for helping him out and giving him the ambition to keep striving to be his best.

Congratulations to all of Golden Sands Speedway’s rookies: Frank Nitzke in the Super Late Models, Shawn Stelzer in the Super Stocks, and Most Improved Driver in the Pure Stocks - Mike Somers. Also a big congrats to Scott Beyer for receiving Golden Sands Speedway’s Congeniality Award.