Auto Racing: Jurkovic doubles pleasure at Illiana
By Tony Baranek email@example.com August 24, 2013 10:32PM
Mike White (00) chases down Keith Sterkowitz (31) during the first 56-lap late-model feature Saturday night at Illiana Speedway. White made the pass and finished fifth. | Goodaker Photography~For Sun-Timed Media
Fast time: Boris Jurkovic (19.378). 1st 56-lap feature: 1. Jurkovic, 2. Anthony Danta, 3. Jeff Cannon, 4. Eddie Hoffman, 5. Mike White, 6. Keith Sterkowitz. 2nd 56-lap feature: 1. Jurkovic, 2. Hoffman, 3. Danta, 4. Cannon, 5. Wes Griffith, 6. Austin Luedtke.
Fast time: Chris King (17.362). Heat: 1. Ben Fidone, 2. Paul Shafer Sr., 3. Jaret James. 20-lap feature: 1. King, 2. Jacob Melvin, 3. Fidone, 4. Shafer, 5. Stan Zolodz IV, 6. James.
1st heat: 1. William Panshun, 2. Tom Crawford Sr., 3. Trevor Martin. 2nd heat: 1. Mac Hastings, 2. Mark Ross Jr., 3. Melissa Wilson. 3rd heat: 1. Alex Treptow, 2. Matt Baikie, 3. Jim Gross. 12-lap feature: 1. Panshun, 2. Ross, 3. Hastings, 4. Baikie, 5. Treptow, 6. Gross.
Updated: September 26, 2013 6:45AM
SCHERERVILLE, Ind. — High or low, it really didn’t matter.
There was no stopping Boris Jurkovic on Saturday night at Illiana Speedway.
The Manhattan native won both legs of the Twin 56-lap Elmer Musgrave Memorial, using two different paths to victory.
In Race 1, he made an outside move on Anthony Danta on lap 18 to take the lead, and in Race 2 he cruised by Eddie Hoffman via the botttom groove on lap 16.
In both cases, he checked out on the field from there.
“Any time you can come here and win two big races in a row it’s a good night for you,” Jurkovic said. “We’ve won some big races all over the country ... but I’m very proud of the guys here tonight. They did a heck of a job.
“I mean, these guys race here every week. So it’s tough to beat that. They know what they’re doing, they’re not slouches. Tonight, we just hit the setup right on the money.”
The first 56-lapper had plenty of side-by-side action early, and also a lot of mayhem. Three yellow flags claimed a handful of cars, the hardest hit being a backward-into-the-wall crash by Michael Martin Jr.
The first leader was Bobby Gash, who was passed via the high groove by Keith Sterkowitz on lap six. Sterkowitz was victimized on a similar move by Anthony Danta on lap 10. Then Jurkovic, who started 10th on the grid, went to the top to pass Danta in Turn 2 on lap 14.
“It was fast tonight up top,” Jurkovic said. “The car was actually tight on the bottom, but if I rolled through in the middle in 1 and 2, she was real fast.
“Anthony kept us honest. I don’t know if he was cruising or not, but he kept pressure on us. We had a little problem when the 55 car (Don Sabatino) got into us when we were lapping him. That made me a little nervous, but other than that the car was spectacular.”
Danta stayed in second place, about five car-lengths behind Jurkovic. Jeff Cannon ran flawlessly, if unspectacularly, in third. Hoffman was fourth, followed by Mike White, Sterkowitz, Paul Shafer Jr. and John Nutley.
The second feature saw some early drama up front as Hoffman and Sterkowitz waged a side-by-side war for several laps, with Sterkowitz clearing once, only to have Hoffman fight back and take the lead. All the while Jurkovic rode right behind them.
Once the Hoffman-Sterkowitz tussle was settled, Jurkovic went to work. He needed just two laps to take Hoffman and set sail. The field ran pretty well spaced out from there, although Danta was able to work his way up and give Hoffman a challenge for second at the finish. Fourth went to Cannon, ahead of Wes Griffith and Austin Luetdke.
Chris King cruised in the Legends feature over Jacob Melvin and Ben Fidone. William Panshun and Mark Ross ran nose to tail through most of the pure stocks main, with Panshun prevailing by that margin.