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McMullen proves masterful in claiming first 2023 MSA triumph at Plymouth Dirt Track


(Pedal Down Promotions) May 13, 2023 - Four-time Midwest Sprint Car Association 360 Sprint Car champion Brandon McMullen of Oshkosh utilized a start strong and an impressive finish in heavy lapped traffic to claim his first 25-lap Akright Auto Midwest Sprint Car Association and Plymouth Dirt Track Racing 360 Sprint Car A-main victory of the 2023 season Saturday, May 13 at The Plymouth Dirt Track in Plymouth, Wis.


In the 25-lap 360 Sprint Car A main, outside front row starter Brandon McMullen got a huge jump on the drop of the green flag from his outside second row starting spot and powered his way into the lead in turn four on the opening lap as 2011 PDTR 360 Sprint Car champ Ben Schmidt of Plymouth, who started third, took second in turn two on lap two.


One lap later, Chris Clayton of Waldo spun into the infield in turn three to bring out the first of two caution flags. On the restart, Schmidt attempted to slide his way past McMullen entering turn two, but the two-time Plymouth Dirt Track Racing 360 Sprint Car champion fended off the challenge to maintain the lead.


On lap 4, 10th starter Alex Pokorski of West Bend used the high line to pass sixth starter Kevin Karnitz of West Bend to claim fifth in the running order before working around polesitter Tony Wondra of Campbellsport to grab fourth.


Meanwhile, McMullen built up a full straight away lead over Schmidt by lap 7. One lap later, McMullen caught the rear of the field and began to negotiate slower traffic, which allowed Schmidt to cut the gap.


Schmidt worked the high line to reel in McMullen on lap 13 before the second and final caution flag appeared when Chris Larson of Franksville spun into the infield in turn three.


On the restart, 2008 PDTR 360 Sprint Car champ Lance Fassbender of Burnett, who started seventh, ducked under Schmidt to assume second before Pokorski moved past Schmidt on lap 15 to take over third.


Over the final 10 laps, McMullen weaved his way through dense lapped traffic with Fassbender and Pokorski following close behind as the groove moved to the bottom of the track as rubber built up on the racing surface.


McMullen successfully negotiated the slower cars on the way to his division-leading 28th career PDTR 360 Sprint Car and 39th career Midwest Sprint Car Association A-main triumph.


“We normally don’t start the year too well, so it feels good to get one out of the gate,” McMullen said. “I saw Lance [Fassbender] on the restart and knew I had to get going. The crew always gives me a great car and I couldn’t do this without them.”


McMullen dedicated the victory to late PDTR 360 Sprint Car competitor Cole Possi of Rock, Mich., who passed away in March.


“This win is for Cole Possi,” he said. “It’s terrible what happened to him. I wish he were here tonight racing with us tonight.”


Fassbender placed second, Pokorski finished a career-best third, Tyler Brabant of Waupun placed fourth after starting 12th and eighth starter Will Gerrits of Waupun rounded out the top five.


Bill Taylor of Boltonville won the 12-lap PDTR-MSA 360 Sprint Car B main.

Brandon McMullen turned the fastest overall lap in 360 PDTR-MSA Sprint Car group qualifying with a lap of 12.907 seconds.

The second event of the 2023 PDTR campaign, which was sponsored by the city of Sheboygan Falls Fire Department, drew 28 PDTR-MSA 360 Sprint Cars.


The Plymouth Dirt Track will host an all-open wheel event on Saturday, May 20, featuring the Bumper to Bumper Interstate Racing Association 410 Sprint Car Series, Plymouth Dirt Track Racing-Midwest Sprint Car Association 360 Sprint Cars and Badger Midgets.


Pit gates open at 2 p.m., followed by grandstand gates at 4:30 p.m. with hot laps at 5:30 p.m.


The Plymouth Dirt Track at the Sheboygan County Fairgrounds is located at 229 Fairview Drive in Plymouth, Wis. For more information, visit www.plymouthdtr.com or check out Plymouth Dirt Track Racing on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


AKRIGHT AUTO 360 SPRINT CARS

A Main (25 Laps): 1. 98-Brandon McMullen [4]; 2. 7-Lance Fassbender [7]; 3. 4-Alex Pokorski [10]; 4. 99B-Tyler Brabant [12]; 5. 21-Will Gerrits [8]; 6. 11-Tony Wondra [1]; 7. 35-Ben Schmidt [3]; 8. 63K-Kevin Karnitz [6]; 9. 53-Shane Wenninger [5]; 10. 69-Bill Taylor [18]; 11. 3-Justin Erickson [19]; 12. 1-Tommy Colburn [13]; 13. 08-Katelyn Krebsbach [11]; 14. 2-Chris Clayton [2]; 15. 85J-Logan Julien [22]; 16. 53A-Spyder Akright [16]; 17. 69S-TJ Smith [15]; 18. 51-Chris Larson [9]; 19. 30-Doug Wondra [14]; 20. 54G-Scott Grissom [17]; 21. 12P-JJ Pagel [21]; 22. 22B-Brandon Berth [23]; 23. 66T-Tristan Koenings [20]


B Main: 1. 69-Bill Taylor [2]; 2. 3-Justin Erickson [4]; 3. 66T-Tristan Koenings [3]; 4. 12P-JJ Pagel [6]; 5. 85J-Logan Julien [10]; 6. 22B-Brandon Berth [7]; 7. 54G-Scott Grissom [1]; 8. 54-Randy Post [5]; 9. 21H-TJ Haddy [12]; 10. 5-Kevin Seidler [9]; 11. 38-Michael Klein [11]; 12. 39-Michael Decker [8]


Heat 1 (10 Laps): 1. 53-Shane Wenninger [2]; 2. 98-Brandon McMullen [4]; 3. 4-Alex Pokorski [3]; 4. 08-Katelyn Krebsbach [5]; 5. 3-Justin Erickson [1]; 6. 12P-JJ Pagel [6]; 7. 39-Michael Decker [7]


Heat 2 (10 Laps): 1. 21-Will Gerrits [4]; 2. 2-Chris Clayton [3]; 3. 69S-TJ Smith [6]; 4. 53A-Spyder Akright [2]; 5. 54G-Scott Grissom [1]; 6. 66T-Tristan Koenings [7]; 7. 5-Kevin Seidler [5]


Heat 3 (10 Laps): 1. 63K-Kevin Karnitz [3]; 2. 35-Ben Schmidt [4]; 3. 30-Doug Wondra [2]; 4. 51-Chris Larson [5]; 5. 69-Bill Taylor [1]; 6. 85J-Logan Julien [6]; 7. 21H-TJ Haddy [7]


Heat 4 (10 Laps): 1. 7-Lance Fassbender [4]; 2. 11-Tony Wondra [1]; 3. 1-Tommy Colburn [1]; 4. 99B-Tyler Brabant [5]; 5. 22B-Brandon Berth [3]; 6. 54-Randy Post [6]; 7. 38-Michael Klein [7]


Qualifying 1: 1. 98-Brandon McMullen, 12.907; 2. 4-Alex Pokorski, 12.930; 3. 53-Shane Wenninger, 13.284; 4. 3-Justin Erickson, 13.394; 5. 08-Katelyn Krebsbach, 13.529; 6. 12P-JJ Pagel, 13.576; 7. 39-Michael Decker, 13.617


Qualifying 2: 1. 21-Will Gerrits, 13.516; 2. 2-Chris Clayton, 13.566; 3. 53A-Spyder Akright, 13.669; 4. 69S-TJ Smith, 13.704; 5. 54G-Scott Grissom, 14.055; 6. 5-Kevin Seidler, 14.279; 7. 66T-Tristan Koenings, 14.280


Qualifying 3: 1. 35-Ben Schmidt, 13.307; 2. 63K-Kevin Karnitz, 13.438; 3. 85J-Logan Julien, 13.856; 4. 30-Doug Wondra, 14.032; 5. 69-Bill Taylor, 14.251; 6. 51-Chris Larson, 14.291; 7. 21H-TJ Haddy, 14.398


Qualifying 4: 1. 7-Lance Fassbender, 13.401; 2. 22B-Brandon Berth, 13.755; 3. 11-Tony Wondra, 13.806; 4. 1-Tommy Colburn, 13.836; 5. 99B-Tyler Brabant, 14.101; 6. 54-Randy Post, 14.372; 7. 38-Michael Klein, 15.931

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