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Wreckers to Checkers, Gillis and Critchett Rebuild and Win
May 25th 2008 - Morris, IL (5/25/08)  After being involved in a five car crash last weekend, everyone knew it would a week of long nights in many race shops to get everybody back on the track.  The time and effort was put forth and it paid big dividends for two of the teams.

Saturday night marked the first appearance for the Illini Sportsman Midgets at Bureau County Speedway in Princeton, IL.  The track was a perfect fit for the Illini group.  Illini Rookie of the Year candidate Dick Kaiser drove the Dan George #82 to the trophy dash win.  Joe Knippel took advantage of his outside front row starting position to win heat one.  Heat two saw Scott Koerner pick up his first heat race win, although his Chevy Sesco was smoking heavily.  

The feature race was one of the great ones.  Allen Gillisí #39 may have been the most seriously damaged cars at Rockford.  The car looked straight in hot laps, but it lost brakes and had to be worked on further.  Gillis managed to finish 2nd in his heat, but by time the main rolled around, it became apparent the Task Management car wasnít going to finish 2nd to else this night.  A late caution to remove a stalled car bunched up the field, but Gillis held off all challenges to claim his first feature win.

Less than 24 hours later, the group found themselves as part of the big ASA show at Grundy County Speedway.  After finishing last in his heat, and 7th in the feature the night before on the dirt, Lamont Critchett looked strong in hot laps.  In fact, he looked strong winning his heat.  And he still looked good taking to the high side to get around Joe Knippel on his way to his first feature win of the season.

Celebrating in victory lane with his crew and car owner (brother Loran Critchett, Jr.), Lamont revealed the team had to pull an all-nighter to get their cars repaired and changed over to their pavement set-up.  They did, and it paid off.

Four races, four faces in victory lane.  A first time trophy dash winner, a first time heat race winner, a first time feature winner, two new tracks visited, 22 drivers, and a bunch of new cars.  Not bad for just two weeks into the season.

Next Illini Racing Series race is June 7th at Bureau County Speedway.

Illini Racing Series Race #3, May 24, 2008, Bureau County Speedway, Princeton, IL

Heat race #1 (8 laps):1. Joe Knippel #33, Mokena, IL, Knippel/Spencer Quad 4/Buzzard;  2.  Doug Orseske #0, Frankfort, IL, Diana Orseske Quad 4/Buzzard;  3. Loran Critchett, Jr. #17, Alsip, IL, Dave Gass VW/Challenger;  4. Tom Shilkuski #23, Spring Valley, IL, Ray Shilkuski Focus/Stewart;  5.  Mike Krysiak #7, Peru, IL, VW/White;  6.  Eric Nitz #31, Beloit, WI, Knippel/Spencer Quad 4/Ellis;  7.  Charlie Holt #4H, Lemont, IL, Thompson/Engsrtom EcoTech/Stewart;  8.  Lamont Critchett #44, Chicago Heights, IL, Critchett VW/Stapp

Heat race #2 (8 laps):  1.  Scott Koerner #4K, Joliet, IL, Task Management Chevy Sesco/Bishop;  2. Allen Gillis #39, Westmont, IL, Task Management Illini Focus/White;  3.  Dick Kaiser #82, Milwaukee, WI, George Racing Enterprises Scream Focus/Buzzard;  4.  Jason Dull #56, Machesney Park, IL, Fontana/Stealth;  5.  Mike Adams, Jr. #21A, Rockdale, WI, Albert Racing Enterprises Chevy II/Mislich;  6.  Mark Morey #3, Sugar Grove, IL, Knippel/Spencer Illini Focus/White;  7.  Scott Dunning #1, Bolingbrook, IL, Knippel/Spencer Illini Focus/Hawk; 8.  Dan George #81 DNS

Feature race (20 laps):1.  Gillis, 2.  Kaiser, 3.  Knippel, 4.  Orseske, 5.  Adams, Jr., 6.  Dull, 7.  Lamont Critchett, 8.  Loran Critchett, Jr., 9. Nitz, 10.  Morey, 11.  Holt,  12, Koerner, 13.  Shilkuski DNS, 14.  Krysiak DNS, 15.  Dunning DNS, George DNS

Illini Racing Series Race #4, May 25, 2008, Grundy County Speedway, Morris, IL

Heat race #1 (10 laps):  1.  Lamont Critchett #44, Chicago Heights, IL, Critchett VW/Stapp, 2.  Loran Critchett, Jr. #17, Alsip, IL, Dave Gass VW/Challenger;  3.  Joe Knippel #33, Mokena, IL, Knippel/Spencer Quad 4/Buzzard;  4.  Doug Orseske #0, Frankfort, IL, Diana Orseske Quad 4/Buzzard;  5.  Jason Dull #56, Machesney Park, IL, Fontana/Stealth;  6.  Dan George #81, Milwaukee, WI., Scream Focus/Stealth;  7.  Mike Adams, Jr. #21A, Rockdale, WI, Albert Racing Enterprises Chevy II/Stealth;  8.  Eric Nitz #31, Beloit, WI, Knippel/Spencer Quad 4/Ellis;  9.  Scott Koerner #4K, Joliet, IL, Task Management Chevy Sesco/Bishop DNF;  10.  Joline Deheve-Slomka, Addison, IL, Deheve Racing Ford 2300/Genenten DNS;  11. Dick Kaiser #82 DNS

Feature race (20 laps):  1.  Lamont Critchett, 2.  Knippel, 3.  Orseske, 4.  Dull, 5.  Adams, Jr., 6.  Loran Critchett, Jr., 7.  Nitz, 8.  Koerner DNF, 9.  George DNF, Slomka DNS, Kaiser DNS.

Illini Racing Series Sportsman Midget Points after 4 races:
1.  Joe Knippel #33, 1134;  2.  Loran Critchett #17, 1022;  3.  Doug Orseske #0, 1015;  
4.  Lamont Critchett #44, 1006;  5.  Jason Dull #56, 970;  6.  Mike Adams Jr. #21, 721;  7.  Allen Gillis #39, 714;  8.  Dan George #81, 661;  9.  Scott Koerner #4, 609;  10.  Eric Nitz #31, 579;  11.  Scott Dunning # 1, 526;  12.  Freddy Teer #54, 518;  13.  Dick Kaiser #82, 504;  14.  Mark Morey  #3, 399;  15.  Charlie Holt #4, 323;  16.  David Budres #31, 263;  17.  Eddie Sauer #74, 188;  18.  Bob Shreffler #21S,181;  19.  Tom Shilkuski #23, 128;  20.  Mike Krysiak #7, 120;  21.  Ken Dull #82, 5 ;  22.  Joline Slomka #95, 5

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