Lasoski Wins Battle with Brown for NSL Win at Knoxville!

Lasoski Wins Battle with Brown for NSL Win at Knoxville!

Danny Lasoski wrestled a late race lead from Brooke Tatnell, and held off his nephew Brian Brown to claim a $5,000 National Sprint League win Saturday night at the Knoxville Raceway. The win was the Dover, Missouri pilot’s 109th at the famous half-mile in front of a large crowd on Town Crier Night. Clint Garner won the 23rd 360 feature of his career at Knoxville, tying him for second with John Kearney on the all-time winner’s list. Chris Walraven claimed his second 305 feature win of the season.

Craig Dollansky, fresh off of his $10,000 score Friday night at the Folkens Brothers Trucking Spring Nationals in Jackson, Minnesota, led the 25-lap feature in the early going ahead of Brooke Tatnell and Davey Heskin. Danny Lasoski, who was the high point man after setting quick time and winning his heat, was up to fourth by lap two from his eighth starting spot.

By lap six, Brian Brown, who also started in row four advanced into the top five. While Dollansky worked up front, Tatnell was gaining on him, and took the point on lap seven. Behind him, a four-way battle brought fans to the edge of their seat. Positions second through fifth were swapped between Dollansky, Lasoski, Heskin and Brown.

At the halfway juncture, it was Tatnell leading Lasoski, Dollansky, Heskin and Brown. Brown would start to assert himself at that point, cruising on the cushion, and getting by Heskin for fourth on lap 14, and Dollansky for third on the next lap.

Lasoski was true to a thin groove on the low side, and shot by Tatnell with six laps to go. Brown followed him into second on lap 21, and it seemed the winning battle would be decided in lapped traffic. The only caution of the event came out on lap 22, however, when Scott Bogucki spun.

Lasoski was able to take Brown’s high line away and pull away for the win in clean air. Following the lead pair were Tatnell, Dollansky and Ian Madsen. Hard-charger Jeff Swindell made a last lap pass for sixth, and Heskin, Dustin Selvage, Tasker Phillips and RJ Johnson rounded out the top ten. Madsen and Selvage joined Lasoski as heat winners.

“The car was shaking so bad I couldn’t see where I was going,” said Lasoski in Victory Lane. “I guess the wheel was full of mud. I was just trying to keep it between the fences. My hat’s off to (crew chief) Guy Forbrook. The last two weeks we’ve been less than stellar. Tonight, he put this GoMuddy car in Victory Lane. (Brown) does what he has to do. He goes where I’m not. I kept choosing the wrong lines, but once we got through there, I didn’t see him anymore.”

Nate Van Haaften led the 18-lap 360 main event early on over Tony Shilling and Chris Martin. Clint Garner quickly put his hat in the ring however, moving into third on the second lap. With two laps in the books, the caution came out for John Anderson, who came to a stop inside of turn one. The restart saw Van Haaften leading Shilling, Garner, Jon Agan and Martin back to green.

Garner quickly shot into second and battle ensued with he on the high side and Van Haaften down low. The red flag flew with five laps down, when Mike Van Haaften spun and collected Alan Zoutte, who tipped over. He was uninjured.

While the lead duo continued to battle, Calvin Landis was progressing from his starting spot outside row five. The veteran was into the top four by lap nine, and passed Agan for third with eight laps to go.

Garner would make his final move in lapped traffic, sneaking under Van Haaften on lap 13 and cruising to the win. Following the Sioux Falls driver and Van Haaften across the stripe were Landis, Shilling and Agan. Matt Moro, Martin, Seth Bergman, Jamie Ball and Sawyer Phillips rounded out the top ten. Joe Beaver, who set quick time, took a wicked ground pounder at the start of the first heat race. He was o.k., though the car was destroyed. Agan and Nate Van Haaften won the heats.

“I was really happy to see the lapped traffic coming,” said Garner in Victory Lane. “Nate was doing a great job down there on the bottom and I wanted to just drive around him up there in my line. It was a little too far around, and I was probably being a little too hard on the tires. Nate was kind of in the line to be had. We’re happier than heck to get this win. I want to dedicate this win to an employee and good friend of ours Kirby Wiese, who is battling cancer.”

Chris Walraven led the distance of the 15-lap 305 feature. The Knoxville veteran used the low side the entire way to grab his second win of the season. Devin Kline retired early with what was suspected to be an electrical issue on lap four. Christian Bowman used restarts to his advantage, gaining fourth on the caution for Ball with four laps down, and third on a lap eight restart for a 360 spin by Dan Henning.

Last week’s winner, Corey Kautz, battled the leader much of the way utilizing the cushion. He pulled alongside him before one final yellow for a spun Henning with three laps to go. Bowman again used a good restart to capture second, but could not run down Walraven. Behind Walraven and Bowman came Kautz, McKenna Haase and Mike Mayberry. Hard-charger Stacey Alexander, Brad Comegys, Mitchell Alexander, Ben Woods and Matthew Stelzer rounded out the top ten. Bowman set quick time, while Walraven and Haase won the heats. Trevor Smith slammed into the infield fence on the frontstretch at the onset of his heat race and flipped. He was unhurt.

“I could hear them back there, they were coming,” said Walraven. “I was trying not to miss the bottom down here (turn one), because it’s very narrow. It’s a half a left rear wide getting in. If you miss it, you’re in trouble. You’re out in ‘No Man’s Land’. This team came together late, and it’s quite a deal.”

Join us next week as the National Sprint League returns for Brownell’s Salutes the Troops Night! Any active or retired Military personnel will receive FREE admission with their I.D.! Drivers will again be shooting for a $5,000 win! For more information on Knoxville Raceway, visit!

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