KAUKAUNA, Wis. — Casey Johnson was declared the winner of Tuesday night’s Forest County Potawatomi Dixieland 250 at Wisconsin Int’l Raceway for the ARCA Midwest Tour.
Johnson of Edgerton, Wis., inherited the victory after apparent winner Kyle Busch was disqualified when his late model failed to make post-race weight minimums.
Johnson’s $10,000 victory came in a 250-lap race that was delayed by rain after 34 laps. With a number of laps run under the yellow flag to give the track one final drying, green flag racing resumed with 181 laps to go.
Chris Weinkauf and Jeff Van Oudenhoven, who was leading when the rain began to fall, were early race leaders with Busch taking over the top spot at about the 95-lap mark. A yellow flag flew at lap 129 with most of the leaders pitting as Johnson stayed out on the track and took over first place.
The event’s fastest qualifier, Busch eventually raced by Johnson for the lead with Johnson making his pit stop for fresh tires during a caution period with 62 laps to go. Johnson was just inside the top 10 when racing resumed with Johnson charging up to second place as the laps remaining wound down.
A six-lap-to-go yellow flag set up a dash to the checkered flag with Austin Nason, who ran a strong race the entire way, and Dan Fredrickson tangling between turns one and two on the last lap, which knocked both out of a top five finish.
Series point leader Ty Majeski finished second with Paul Shafer Jr., Van Oudenhoven and Dennis Prunty, last year’s race winner, rounding out the top five.
“I’m still speechless,” Johnson said. “I am definitely surprised to jump in a car that I have never seen before, I raced against it a couple of times, but its great equipment and a heck of an opportunity to drive and we were able to come away with one.”
Johnson said that the deal for him to drive the car, normally driven by Rich Schuman, Jr., was finalized around 4 p.m. on Monday.
“Definitely have mixed emotions,” Johnson said. “This would have been the second time I finished second in this race (he finished second to Nick Murgic in 2015), and in the Midwest, this is one of the premiere events and to fall short, you have an entire year to think about it and try it again.
“I saw him (Busch) roll over the scale three times and just wondered if anyone was going to come over and talk to me,” Johnson said . “We were parked next to Busch’s car and we had our car on jack stands and tear some things apart, and they just couldn’t get him off the scales after Ty (Majeski) and I have already been through them. Then the officials came over with the big check in hand and said congratulations. That was pretty neat.”
Busch didn’t speak with the media after post-race inspection but did stay and sign autographs for fans.
Illinois speedster Michael Bilderback won the accompanying Big 8 Series late model 35 lapper, posting his third series win of the season.
Casey Johnson, Ty Majeski, Paul Shafer Jr., Jeff Van Oudenhoven, Dennis Prunty, Chris Weinkauf, Cardell Potter, Dalton Zehr, Bobby Kendall, Jason Weinkauf, Travis Sauter, Matt Kocourek, Austin Nason, Dan Fredrickson, Travis Braden, Jacob Goede, Corey Kemkes, John DeAngelis Jr., Brandon Reichenberger, Jonathan Eilen, Travis Dassow, Braison Bennett, Ricky Baker, Nick Murgic, Michael Ostdiek, Kyle Calmes, Andrew Morrissey, Derek Kraus, Justin Mondeik, Kyle Busch.