2015 Membership Meeting
The 2015 MWTS membership meeting will be held Feb 7 at 1pm at Heroes West Sports Grill. The address is 1530 Commerce Lane Joliet, IL 60431. We hope to see everyone there!
Don't forget to vote for the 2014 MWTS awards! Please send your votes to: firstname.lastname@example.org
1. Driver of the year
2. Most improved Driver
3. Crew chief of the year
4. Tough luck award
5. Family of the year
6. Most Helpful in the pits (Jake Burkhart’s Engine Parts Trophy)
Below is the 2014 Midwest Top Sportsman banquet invite. If you plan on attending, be sure to get this mailed to Michele by Jan 17. We hope to see everyone there!!
MWTS Race #11 Byron Dragway Oct 5, 2014
Wow, can you say COLD; WINDY; MISERABLE WEATHER!!!! The weather race gods haven't been all that accomodating with us this season! We didn't finish 4 races and thoughts Friday, Oct. 3rd at Byron Dragway, were that it would be #5. UGH!! I think there were 26 Top Sportsman cars in the pits by late afternoon Friday. Once in and parked there weren't too many hanging around outside. It was cold and that wind went right through a person! Just the same, it was great to fill up our area and know that we would have a great field of cars for our final race of the season. Saturday we waited all day long for the rain, snow and wind to STOP!
BJ and his track personel never stopped working on the track to try and keep up, in case we caught a
break and would be able to make a pass. Late afternoon that break in the weather came and the track was
ready. I don't have the 1st qualifing sheet, I know not everyone got their car out and made a pass. I think about 12-14 cars tried. The track was very cold.There were a few good passes and some not so good. So
everyone was trailered back up and enjoyed some great beef brisket and chicken, cooked all day in a
smoker, provided by Ed Kurth. Thanks, Ed!!!!! It was nice to all be together and enjoy the great food and
So, Sunday was Race Day!!! Finally!! One gets a little "unsettled" when you wait for 2 days in miserable weather to race!! There were 28 cars. 20 members and 8 who we hope will return to race again with us.
First round is important to all of us, and of course to those who were fighting for top positions in the "Purse Snatchers" points for MWTS. Both 1st and 2nd in points, Dave Howard and Steve Howard lost 1st round,
so the championship was settled. Dave Howard took the Championship and Steve Howard, 2nd place. Now, came the close fight for 3rd to 5th. Rick Sojka Jr. was unable to enter this weekend and fell from his 4th place in points. Tony Grzelinski and Alex Bosak lost in 1st round, making it even more a battle. Steve Jaeger and Don Mateicka, Matt Szymczak, & Chris Redden all won 1st round to keep it tight. Other first round winners were, Kyle Dumke, who was our low qualifier with a stellar 6.67! Great job, Kyle and Larry. The rest of the first round winners were Larry Dalton, Mike Kokenes, Ed Kurth, Dave Green, Eddie Banderowicz, and Bob Romano. Quarterfinals were J. Banke vs bye; Jaeger vs. Kurth; Dipiazza vs Mateicka; Romano vs Ebersole. Semi finals saw Banke vs Jaeger and Mateicka vs Romano. Our last final round of the season was Steve Jaeger vs Bob Romano in a great race that saw Bob Romano get the win!!! Congratulations to Bob and Team Zirk! You guys did a great job all day. Also, congrats to Steve Jaeger and family for your runner-up finish and solid 3rd place finish in the MWTS points race!!
The top Ten finishers in the points chase are: Dave Howard, Steve Howard, Steve Jaeger, Tony Grzelinski, Don Mateicka, Rick Sojka Jr, Matt Szymczak, Alex Bosak, Chris Redden and Erik Carlson.
A note, we sure missed Erik Carlson this weekend. Our sincere sympathy to Erik and Summer on the loss of Summer's dad.
There was no "Perfect Light" winner this weekend. Don Mateicka took the $50 Bounty Hunter on Steve
Howard. Tony Grzelinski won a $250 gift certificate from Auto Meter for being the 16th qualifier.
Truly, congratulations to everyone on another fantastic MWTS season!! We had 10 new members this
season, some returned to MWTS and some brand new ones. I think we have the greatest drivers and crews and families, and also some of the greatest doorslammers in the midwest! Congratulations to our 2014 Champion, Dave Howard. Congratulations to all our guys in the points chase. It was a fight to this last race. How Exciting!! How Competitive!!! Yet, how much we are a family! Help is always just a trailer away!
By the time I get this story up, I am sure some guys will already have their motors and trans out. Some
already tore down, maybe parts ordered. So, I hope everyone just has normal maintenance and no major
problems. Can't wait to see new cars next year!?? Maybe new paint jobs!?? New motors??! Whatever the off season brings, hope it is all good to everyone.
Don't forget about the banquet! We changed from November to January. That gives alittle more time to get things done and ready. The Banquet is January 24th @ Wise Guys Bar and Grill in Princeton, Il. Please, remember also to be thinking of your votes for; Driver of the Year, Crew Chief or Crew of the Year, Most Improved Driver, Family of the Year, Tough Luck Award, and Most Helpful in the Pits. If you can solicit a donation for a raffle item, please do so. You may donate an item from yourself or team if you want to. More info will be coming on the website soon. Can't wait to see everyone there!!
MWTS Race #10 Byron Dragway Sept 21, 2014
Sunday morning everyone was ready to RACE!!!! But first, the puddles had to be vacuumed up in the pits, and a few awnings picked up!! Boy, what a rain storm!! BJ was out on the tractor sweeping the track of lots of water as soon as that storm passed!! Thanks BJ, the track was pretty dry by morning. We appreciate
the endless effort you put in to give us a good track!
We gained 3 more cars for Sunday's race, as we started the day with 19. The racers for Race #10 were, Rick Sojka Jr., Robbie VanderWoude, Larry Dalton, Matt Szymczak, Don Mateicka, Steve Jaeger, Jeff
Southerland, Dave Howard, Alex Bosak, Chris Redden, Chad Pekrul, Steve Howard, Bob Romano, Erik Carlson, Ed Kurth, Tom Vanacora, Kyle Dumke, Davy Dins, and Scotty Haas.
The #1 qualifier was Rick Sojka Jr. with a 6.78 @ 203 mph. Quarter-finals were Larry Dalton vs. Don Mateicka; Dave Howard vs. Bye; Steve Howard vs. Davy Dins. Semi-final round saw Mateicka vs. D. Howard and Steve Howard had the bye to the final. Congrats to Steve Howard and Team Burkhart as they defeated Dave Howard in the final. Congrats to Dave Howard and crew also.
Steve Howard also won the $50 Bounty Hunter for his final round win over the last winner Dave. There was no Perfect Light paid. There is still a $250 gift certificate from Auto Meter to win!!!
Next Race is the final race of the season for MWTS!!! Hope to have a great turnout and put on a fantastic show for all the spectators at the PowerWheel Standing event at Byron Dragway on Oct. 4th & 5th. See everyone there!! Happy Racing!
MWTS Race #9 Byron Dragway Sept 20, 2014
Most everyone rolled in Friday night at Byron Dragway and enjoyed the evening talking and catching up
after a few weeks off. Saturday we started off the day with 18 cars. Unfortunately Tony Grzelinski had some mechanical issues and wasn't able to make the call for first round. We also welcomed John Steldt on Saturday, he also had some issues and was not able to make first round call and did not race on Sunday. We hope that John is able to join us again!!
The low qualifier was Dave Howard with a 6.70 @ 201 mph. First round winners were Dave Howard, Scotty Haas, Steve Howard, John Hochsteddler, Rick Sojka Jr., Chad Pekrul, Don Matiecka, and Steve Jaeger.
The rain came in and the race day was finished!! Disappointing, as that made the 4th race to be shortened
by Mother Nature. There were no perfect lights in first round, and no bounty hunter was paid.
After hiding out in the rigs from the rain, the sun came out and the weather was great! Go Figure? So, being that racers love to race.... a golf cart race was decided on!! There were many golf cart participants. A lot of crew members got to have some fun driving down the track! There was alot of heckeling and hollering and
alot of laughter! And at the end it all came down to a Midwest Top Sportsman against a Midwest Super
Comp. Congrats to our own Kyle Dumke!!! It sounded like he won a national championship the MWTS cheering was so loud!!! It was alot of fun and a great way to spend the rest of our day!!!
Thank-You B.J.!!! Thank-You Byron Dragway for letting a bunch of dedicated racers have a great time,
despite not being able to "race" their cars!!
MWTS Race #8 Rt 66 Aug 17, 2014
Saturday we lost 1 car to mechanical failure, but we gained 3 new cars for Sunday's race. Members Dave Green and Andre Harris rolled in and John Scali Jr. has re-newed his membership. We welcome John
The bracket racers were having their last points race Sunday, so we were told we would only get 1 qualifing run, so that they were sure to finish their season. Our guys were Ready!! Wow!! Great qualifing!!! Low
qualifier was Dave Howard with a run of 6.73 @ 202 mph, followed by Kyle Dumke, Dave Green and Ricky Sojka. Again all day the runs were too close to call!! Great reaction times and passes!!
Quarter finals were: Dave Howard vs Andre Harris,; John Scali vs Brian Brown; and Steve Jaeger vs Steve Howard.
Semis: D. Howard vs J. Scali; S Jaeger had a bye.
Dave and Steve met in the finals and it was Dave Howard taking the win.
Congrats to Dave and Team Tacchia on a great job! Steve Jaeger and family had a great 2 days of racing!! 2
final appearances! Brian Brown took the bounty on Tony Grzelinski. Thanks to Route 66 Raceway for a great track surface and the accomodations for all our members. Thanks also for all the good words via the announcer, as our members ran.
We have 3 races left!! It's anyones races to win! The points race is smokin'! Come and race with the best Top Sportsman cars in the Midwest!! Sept. 20 & 21 @ Byron Dragway, Byron, IL. and Oct. 4 & 5, also
at Byron Dragway. Happy Racing!!
MWTS Race #7 Rt 66 Aug 16, 2014
We all wondered if the weather would hold off the predicted rain for Saturday so as not to spoil our race weekend after a long 4 weeks off. Mother Nature gave us a couple of sprinkles, but the racing gods
prevailed! It was the Route 66 Raceway Classic, and MWTS had 20 cars to put on a great show for all the
people in the stands. And yes, there were alot of people in the stands!
MWTS participants on Saturday were Robbie VanderWoude, Dave Howard, Steve Howard, Tony Grzelinski, Kyle Dumke, Erik Carlson, Mike Kokenes, Sean Brady, Chris Redden, Alex Bosak, Dave Espisito, New Member- Eddie Banderowicz, Tim Kirman, Tom Vanacora, Ricky Sojka, Don Mateicka, Brian Brown, Steve
Jaeger, Matt Szymczak, and Chad Pekrul.
Dave Howard was the low qualifier with a 6.70 @ 203 mph., followed by Tim Kirman and Kyle Dumke.
Quarter finals were: T. Grzelinski had a bye run,; S.Brady vs. C. Redden; T Kirman vs S Jaeger.
Semis were: Grzelinski vs Brady; and Jaeger had a bye to the final.
It was Tony Grzelinski taking the win!
Congrats to Tony and his crew, Al and Bill on a great job! Tony missed the 1st qualifier with a broken rocker arm, but they got it fixed and all that frantic work paid off!! Steve had a great day also, Congrat's to all his
crew!! I don't know the exact times of every race Sat., but I can tell you that every one was very close!
Alot of .001 and .003 reaction times, races too close to call from the line! MWTS EXCITEMENT!!! Our
drivers and crews are the best around and we showed alot of people just that on Saturday! And
Boy!! Did the points race get shook up! It's still anybody's to win!! It was a long day, but we all celebrated the great runs we all had and the fact we were all back at the races-together as MWTS! Happy Racing!!
MWTS RACE #4 Byron Dragway June 21, 2014
Saturday was a warm day with scattered showers late afternoon at Byron Dragway.BJ, track owner worked hard to make sure the track conditions were good. There were 19 cars who qualified and 2 guys broke before 1st round leaving it at 17 car field. Dave Howard was low qualifier with a 6.95.
First round went like this: Dave Howard had 1st round bye: Richard Englbert beat Kyle Dumke; Matt Szymczak beat Brian Brown; Bob Romano beat Tom Vanacora; Dave Green beat Steve Jaeger; Don Mateicka beat Chris Redden: Tony Grzelinksi beat Chad Pekrul: Steve Howard beat Alex Bosak and Erik Carlson beat Scott Haas. Second Roound: Dave Howard beat Matt Szymcak: Don Mateicka beat Dave Green.The rain then came in and Byron Dragway decided to call the racing for the day and the pot of $2,500 was split 3 ways with Semi Final points going to Dave Howard, Steve Howard and Don Mateicka.
Matt Szymcak won the "Perfect Light” purse of $200 and a $250 gift certificate to Auto Meter. Szymcak was hot on the tree all 3 rounds 2 double 0 lights and 1 perfect light. The Bounty Hunter was Steve Howard and will be the guy to take out at race #5 in Condova on Saturday, July 12th.
We also welcomed 3 new members for this year: Chad Pekrul, Tom Harger and Car owner Al Griffey and Driver Scott Haas.
The next Race is at Cordova Dragway. It is a back to back race Saturday, July 12th and Sunday, July 13th.We hope to see everyone in a few weeks! Happy Racing!
Congrats to MWTS member John Hochstedler on the runner up at Lucas Oil Divisional race at Rt 66!!
MWTS RACE #3 Martin, MI May 24, 2014
Saturday was a nice day at US 131 Martin, Mi., unfortunately we had a small field of entries. There were 11 cars, it was disappointing not more showed up, but we "raced" on! John Hochstedler was testing his new car on Friday night, and then got ill on Saturday morning and was unable to race. Hope you feel better John!!
So, on we went with a 10 car field. Dave Howard was low qualifier with a 6.96, despite still chasing one of those electrical gremlins.
First round went like this: Dave Howard beat Robbie VanderWoude: Ricky Sojka beat Erik Carlson; Matt Szymczak beat Kyle Dumke; Chris Redden beat Brian Brown and Steve Howard beat Tony Griz. Dave H. had the bye to the semi's, Ricky over Matt and Steve over Chris. The semi's were Ricky over Dave, and Steve had the bye to the finals. It was a great race, the two choosing to only run 1/8th mile, and Ricky broke
out by .001 and Steve Howard is our newest winner!
Congrats to Steve and the Burkhart Racing Team! Great Job on the win. Congrats to the Sojka Family Racing Team on a great day!!
There was still no "Perfect Light" winner, so that will be up to $200 next race!!
There also was no "Bounty Hunter" paid, as the last race winner was unable to attend this week.
Unfortunately, the car count was low and the track a little too loose and so the decision was made to change the next race to Byron Dragway instead of US 131. The race date will remain the same, June 21st. Hope we see everyone there!
MWTS RACE #2 Rt. 66 May 10, 2014
It was a beautiful sunny day at Route 66 Raceway to have our second Quartermax Series race of the new season! MWTS is proud to welcome three racers from Wisconsin! Don Mateeka and Matt Szymczak are our newest members and we hope that Eddie Banderowicz will be able to join us again this season and become a member when he is done with his internship! We all enjoyed getting to know them and hope that they had a great time!! Also returning to membership is Fred Sommers. Glad you're back!!
So, we started the day with 18 cars. We lost the #2 qualifier from last week, Chris Redden to a transmission failure in his warmup. We also just got Dave Granger back this week and he hurt his motor on the first qualifing pass. Sorry guys hope you are back soon!! We are getting our cars back and ready slowly this season. We still have a few more to go. I know there are a few motors still not finished, and a few other parts not delivered yet and a set of tires or two, but the whole "family" will all be together soon!! We got back Erik and Bruce Carlson and that "cool" stude, and Bill and Lori Rotz and crew. Glad to see all of you!!
Steve Howard was low qualifier of the day with a 6.84 @ 202mph. Nice job Steve and Jake!
Round one winners were: Steve Howard, Bill Rotz, Don Mateeka, Jeff Southerland, Alex Bosak, Tony Grzelinski, Matt Szymczak and Eddie Banderowicz. The new "cheeseheads" were tough! The semi-finals came down to Rotz vs. Mateeka and Bosak vs. Banderowicz. The winners were Mateeka and Bosak. Congratulations to Race #2 Winner, Alex Bosak!!! We know you and Zack worked hard to get things fixed from last week, Great Job!!! Congrats to Don and his crew, also!
We hope to have a great turnout in 2 weeks at the beautiful US131 Raceway in Martin, Mi. It's a great facility and we always have a good time! I am thinking we will see our members, Jim and Kim David, and John and Pam Hochsteddler. Maybe we will have a few Michigan guys to join in the day of racing with MWTS!!! So, let's get working guys!!! Get tuned up and ready to go have a great race day at US131!!
Hope all the ladies had a wonderful Mother's Day!! See you soon and Happy Racing!!!
MWTS RACE #1 Rt. 66 MAY 3rd, 2014
Hooray!!!! It's race day!!!! It was a chilly and very windy start to what turned out to be a beautiful first of the season raceday!! Sorry to be missing so many of our guys & gals that were not ready to make the call on
points day #1. We had 14 cars start the day at Route 66 Raceway, but after qualifing only 11 remained.
Bummer!!! Alex, Jeff and Dave G. we hope you guys will be able to get fixed and join us next weekend!!
We have a new member, longtime racer Jeff Southerland. Welcome to our racing family! Rick Sojka Jr. was low qualifier with a 6.99. I know you guys worked feverishly all week to be able to get to race #1. Great job
today! Chris Redden made a charge at the low spot with a nice 7 flat run. Good job!!
Sojka, Englebert, Brady, Vanacora, S.Howard, and Grzelinski all made it out of the first round. Sojka and Vanacora would meet in the semi's and Grzelinski had the bye to the finals. It was Tony Grzelinski taking the win over Rick Sojka. Congrat's to Tony, Bill and Al on a great job!! Also, great job to the Sojka family on their great day!
Boy, it felt great to be at the track!!! It seemed everyone felt the same way. We all miss the racing "family" of
MWTS!! The pits seemed a little empty as we kept looking for more of our "family" to come in, but we know that the ones who couldn't make it, were missing being there also. Next week should prove better, and
can't wait to get there. Race #2 is back at Route 66 Raceway and then #3 is at US131.
Start getting those cars ready, the first race of the Quarter-Max/MWTS series is quickly approaching!! Don't forget to fill out your membership form for 2014 and we hope to see you at the track!!
2014 Quarter-Max/MWTS Membership Form
2014 Quarter-Max/MWTS Schedule
Race #1 May 3 Route 66 Raceway, Joliet, IL
Race #2 May 10 Route 66 Raceway, Joliet, IL
Race #3 May 24 US 131 Martin, MI
Race #4 June 21 Byron Dragway
Race #5 & #6 July 12 & 13 Cordova Dragway, Cordova, IL
Race #7 & #8 Aug 16 & 17 Route 66 Raceway, Joliet, IL
Race #9 & #10 Sept 20 & 21 Byron Dragway, Byron, IL
Race #11 Oct 4 & 5 Byron Dragway, Byron, IL
Quarter-Max Extends Sponsorship Thru 2014 Season!
Rick Jones & Family announced that they will sponsor MWTS for the 2014 season. This will be the 4th year sponsoring MWTS. We are extremely excited and glad to have them back!
2013 MWTS/QuarterMax points winner - Steve Jaeger
Welcome To The New MWTS Website!
Welcome to the new MWTS website!!! In an effort to help keep the site updated frequently and stay user friendly, we have rebuilt everything from scratch. If you would like any announcements to be posted on the website please email me ( Kristi.Vicary@midwesttopsportsman.com ) and I can get them up right away.