SUPERIOR, Wis. — It’s been said, paraphrasing here, “If you build it, they’ll come,” and it certainly seemed to be the case at Gondik Law Speedway on Friday, July 22, when the Superior track looked like the Field of Dreams.

Fans and riders came from all over for the annual Twin Ports Twin 25, part of the Wissota Challenge Series and XR Northern Storm Series.

Speedway promoter Joe Stariha estimated the crowd at 2,500 to witness an incredible field of 51 Late Models. Some said it was the biggest field in the Wissota Challenge Series since 2006. Longtime track announcer Mark Fleischer couldn’t recall a number of local late-model cars like that for about 20 years. The later models represented five states (Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, South Dakota, and Montana) and two Canadian provinces.

Additionally, Midwest Modified rider Chad Switzenberg hails from Sheridan, Wyoming.

Although features were not completed in time for this edition, John Kaanta of Elk Mound, Wis., Dan Ebert of Lake Shore, Minn., Travis Budisalovich of Minneapolis, and Jimmy Mars of Menomonie, Wis., won their Late Model series.

There was a blind coin toss to determine the starting order for the first of two late model 25-lap features, and Mars, who always seems to have a lot of luck at this track, let alone a lot of seeds, obtained the pole position. The top of the starting order for the second feature was to be determined by a reverse order.

There was no filler in this one. In addition to the Wissota Late Models, 14 USRA Late Models made a special appearance to accompany 35 Modifieds and 35 Midwest Modifieds, or 135 cars in all, in just four classes, no less.

The race was fast and furious from the start, with plenty of racing action at two and even three-wide.

The Late Models set the tone from the start, with a small fight on the straight in qualifying leading to Kyle Peterlin going over the wall at Turn 3, bringing out a 15-minute red flag. First responders were on the scene and when it was announced that “the driver is fine” the crown burst into applause.

And even though it was just the first round of Friday’s Late Model, it felt more like the last feature, as this one was shaping up to be a night to remember.

Twin Ports Twn 25s

At Gondok Law Speedway, Superior

Friday’s results

Recent models

Heat 1

1. John Kaanta, Elk Mound, Wis.; 2. Jon Tollakson, Montevideo, Minnesota; 3. Ryan Mikkelson, Alexandria, Minnesota; 4. Cole Searing, Huron, SD; 5. Hank Berry, Sidney, Montana; 6. Rick Niemi Rick Niemi, Evelet; 7. Rick Hanestad, Boyceville, Wis.; 8. Mike Prochnow, Menomonie, Wis.; 9. Marcus Simonson, Milltown, Wis. DNF: Larry Fitzsimmons, East Bethel, Minnesota; Kyle Peterlin, Hibbing.

Heat 2

1. Dan Ebert, Lake Shore, Minnesota; 2. Pat Doar, New Richmond, Wis.; 3. Sam Mars, Menomonie, Wis.; 4. Skeeter Estey, Kelly Lake; 5. Deven VanHouse, Silver Bay; 6. Shane Edginton, East St. Paul, Manitoba; 7. Kevin Carlson, Hermantown; 8. Bryce Sward, Nelson, Minnesota; 9. Michael Bruggeman, Gem Lake, Minn. DNF: Jared Zimpel, Braham, Minn.

Heat 3

1. Travis Budisalovich, Minneapolis; 2. Mike Bellefeuille, Duluth; 3. Dave Mass, East Bethel, Minnesota; 4. Jake Redetzke, Menomonie, Wis.; 5. Danny Vang, Deerwood, Minnesota; 6. Derek Vesel, Hibbing; 7. Gunner Frank, Montrose, Iowa; 8. Tim McMann, Duluth; 9. Trevor Wilson, superior. DNS: Ronnie Malecki, Duluth.

Heat 4

1. Jimmy Mars, Menomonie, Wis.; 2. Kevin Eder, Ashland; 3. Jeff Massingill, Keewatin; 4. Jody Bellefeuille, Duluth; 5.Josh Zimpel, Braham; 6. Jeff Provinzino, Hibbing; 7. TJ Adams, Springbrook, Wis.; 8. Trent Follmer, Brainerd, Minn.; DNF: Buddy Hanestad, Boyceville; Darrell Nelson Hermantown.

Heat 5

1. James Giossi, Hudson, Wis.; 2. Jayme Lautigar, Gilbert; 3. Kevin Burdick, Supervisor; 4. Aaron Lillo, overseer; 5. Jordan Tollakson, Montevideo, Minnesota; 6. Dave Flynn, superior; 7. Terry Lillo, Duluth; 8. Harry Hanson, Eveleth. DNF: Robbie Cooper, South Range, Wis.; Max Nelson, Milaca, Minn.

USRA Late Models

Heat 1

1. Matt LaDuke, Cochrane, Wis.; 2. Dylan Kromschroeder, Cambridge, Minnesota; 3. Lance Hofer, Cochrane, Wis.; 4. Lucas Peterson, Grand Meadow, Minn.; 5. Chad Dawson, Isanti, Minnesota; 6. Steven O’Brien Jr., Red Wing, Minn.; 7. Travis Friske, Tomahawk, Wis.

Heat 2

1. Brett Shafer, Menomonie, Wis.; 2. Michael Hucovski, Corcoran, Minnesota; 3. Jason Zdroik, Eagle River, Wis.; 4. Chad Prissel, Mondovi, Wis.; 5. Patrick Kelley, Forest Lake, Minnesota; 6. Zach Friske, Tomahawk, Wis.; 7. Mitchell Fenske, New Richmond, Wis.

Modified

Heat 1

1. Darrell Nelson, Hermantown; 2. Al Uotinen, Superior; 3. Mark Kangas, Evelet; 4. Jody Bellefeuille, Duluth; 5. Brandon Copp, Burnt; 6. Dan Ebert, Lake Shore, Minnesota; 7. Tanner Williamson, Fort Frances, Ontario; 8. Rene Poluyko, Tyndall, Manitoba; 9. Michael Procopio, Grand Rapids.

Heat 2

1. Steve Lavasseur, River Falls, Wis.; 2. Ryan Gierke, Villard, Minnesota; 3. Shane Sabraski, Rice, Minnesota; 4. Daniel Bargender, Menomonie, Wis.; 5. Donnie Lofdahl, Duluth; 6. Eric Lamm, Milaca, Minnesota; 7. Kelly Checkalski, Poplar; 8. Hunter Anderson, Phillips, Wis.; 9. Tyler Jonson, international falls.

Heat 3

1.Andy Jones, Princeton, Minnesota; 2. Jack Rivord, Superior; 3. Dave Cain, Corcoran, Minnesota; 4. JT Johnson, Milaca, Minnesota; 5.Kelly Estey, Kelly Lake; 6. Tyler Luger, Oxford, Wis.; 7. Dan Kingsley, Superior; 8. Parker Anderson, Phillips, Wis.; 9. Todd Gehl, Solon Springs.

Heat 4

1. Clayton Wagamon, Blaine, Minnesota; 2. Tyler Kaeter, St. Cloud, Minn.; 3. Rick Rivord, Superior; 4. Dale Ames, Huron, SD; 5. Colin Chaschuk, Neebing, Ontario; 6. Jeff Davis, Devlin, Ont.; 7. Jon Frolik, Ramsey, Minnesota; 8. Mike Klippenstein, Supervisor.

Midwestern modifications

Heat 1

1. Cody Carlson, Cody Carlson, senior; 2. Justin Bassa, Cotton; 3. Brennan Gave, Princeton, Minnesota; 4. Cole Boston, Lindstrom, Minnesota; 5.Austin Blom, Saginaw; 6. Carey LePage, Culver; 7. Antoine Gallian, Superior. DNF: Tanner Gehl, Solon Springs; Adam Shinn, Duluth.

Heat 2

1.Kennedy Swan, Chippewa Falls, Wis.; 2. Cole Chernosky, Thunder Bay, Ont.; 3. Shane Howell, Buffalo, Minnesota; 4. Jimmy Latvala, Solon Springs; 5. Taylor Madrinich, Duluth; 6. David Simpson, Thunder Bay, Ont.; 7. Darrin Lawler, Grand Rapids; 8. Paul Ripley Duluth. DNF: Matt Tollers, senior.

Heat 3

1. Justin Jones, Bemidji, Minnesota; 2. Ryan Savoy, senior; 3. Jason VandeKamp, Scandia, Minnesota; 4. William Moelter, Elk Mound, Wis.; 5. Zach Benson, Princeton, Minnesota; 6. Garrett Paull, Fort Frances, Ontario; 7. Austin Zdroik, Eagle River, Wis.; 8. Kalan Wagner, International Falls; 9. Scott Thompson, International Falls.

Heat 4

1. Wyatt Boyum, Falls International; 2. Brady Uotinen, senior; 3. Mitch Weiss, Scandia, Minnesota; 4. Chad Switzenberg, Sheridan, Wyo.; 5. James Vendela, South Range; 6. Jesse Polson, superior; 7. John Carpenter, Hibbing; 8. Bob Hammond, Fort Frances, Ont.

Race track security crews recover the latest model driven by Hibbing’s Kyle Peterlin after being pushed over a barrier during the heat races to qualify for the Twin 25 star races at Gondok Law Speedway on Friday July 22 2022, at Superior.

Clint Austin / Duluth News Tribune

Colorful car races on a dirt road
John Kaanta (85) of Elk Mound, Wis. leads the field in the heat races to qualify for the Twin 25 star races at Gondok Law Speedway on Friday, July 22, 2022, in Superior. Kaanta maintained the lead to win the race.

Clint Austin / Duluth News Tribune

Colorful car races on a dirt road
Jimmy Mars (28) of Menomonie, Wis. and Josh Zimpel (5) of Graham, Minn compete in heat races to qualify for the Twin 25 cross country races at Gondik Law Speedway on Friday, July 22, 2022, in Superior. Mars has won the heat.

Clint Austin / Duluth News Tribune

Colorful car races on a dirt road
Minneapolis’ Travis Budisalovich (31) drives his car during the heat races to qualify for the Cross Country Twin 25 races at Gondok Law Speedway Friday, July 22, 2022, in Superior. Budisalovich won his round.

Clint Austin / Duluth News Tribune

Colorful car races on a dirt road
Dan Ebert (66) of Lake Shore, Minnesota leads a heat race during qualifying for the Cross Country Twin 25 races at Gondok Law Speedway Friday, July 22, 2022, in Superior. Ebert won the round.

Clint Austin / Duluth News Tribune

Colorful car races on a dirt road
Pat Doar of New Richmond, Wis. races to qualify for the Twin 25 star races at Gondok Law Speedway on Friday, July 22, 2022, in Superior. Doar finished second in her heat.

Clint Austin / Duluth News Tribune

Colorful car races on a dirt road
Josh Zimpel (5) of Graham, Minn sits on the scales after a heat race for the Twin 25 cross country races at Gondik Law Speedway Friday, July 22, 2022, in Superior.

Clint Austin / Duluth News Tribune