Mississippi Thunder Speedway
Isenberg tops Mars for first Corn Belt Clash win
FOUNTAIN CITY, Wis. (June 1) — Tim Isenberg’s bridesmaid status on the Corn Belt Clash Late Model Series is finally over.
Isenberg of Marshfield, Wis., who had nine runner-up finishes last season, led the majority of Friday night’s Corn Belt Clash event at Mississippi Thunder Speedway and held off a hard-charging Jimmy Mars of Menomonie, Wis., on his way to earning $3,000 for his first victory on the Iowa-based regional tour.
The polesitting Isenberg battled with fellow front-row starter Nick Herrick of Kenyon, Minn., during the opening laps of the event before powering ahead on the high side and pulling to a comfortable lead.
The race’s only caution flag flew on lap 21 for a slowing Justin Hirt, erasing Isenberg’s large advantage.
Isenberg led Chris Simpson of Oxford, Iowa, second while Mars was on the move in third. Isenberg shot back out front on the restart with Mars working his way past Simpson to the second position.
Mars set his sights on Isenberg’s No. 9t machine, and the two leaders battled hard over the closing laps of the event. Lapped traffic allowed the low-running Mars to pull even with Isenberg a number of times, but Isenberg stayed strong on the high side and pulled ahead to score the victory.
In victory lane, a very humble Isenberg recounted battling his car builder for the win.
“I love racing with the series and to get my first series win over my car builder made it even sweeter,” said Isenberg, whose MB Customs Race Car is powered by a Roush Yates Engine with sponsorship from Don Nikolai Construction, McMillan Electric and Chase Graphics. “The series has some great competition and strong talent and this was a great win on a great track.”
Mars settled for the runner-up finish in the 35-lap feature while Simpson topped his older brother and reigning series champion Chad Simpson of Mount Vernon, Iowa, for the third position. Mars’ teammate A.J. Diemel of Bonduel, Wis., finished fifth.
The tour moves to Peoria (Ill.) Speedway on Sunday for a $4,000-to-win event.
Clash @ Mississippi Thunder: (1) Tim Isenberg, (2) Jimmy Mars, (3) Chris Simpson, (4) Chad Simpson, (5) A.J. Diemel, (6) Jason Rauen, (7) Andrew McKay, (8) Kyle Jumbeck, (9) Nick Herrick, (10) Charlie McKenna, (11) Terry Casey, (12) Jake Meier, (13) Mike Fryer, (14) Rick Wendling, (15) Doug Herrick, (16) Joe Ludemann, (17) Rob Moss, (18) Jim Rychtik, (19) Jon Rogers, (20) Justin Hirt, (21) Jeff Larson. Heat race winners: Diemel, Chris Simpson, Isenberg.