2018 CRANDON SPORTSMAN WORLD CHAMPIONS CROWNED

KYLE KLEIMAN CAPTURES BACK-TO-BACK PRO LITE CHAMPIONSHIPS

 

CRANDON, WI. – SEPT 1ST. The 49th Annual Crandon World Championship weekend continued on Saturday, with a full slate of PRO and Sportsman racing on the docket, today marks the day in which the winner of each Sportsman class is crowned the 2018 World Champion for the season and claims their rightful place in the short-course off-road history books.

Ben Passa (Formula 4×4) and Aaron Konitzer (Classix) got Super Saturday started by completing the sweep of their respective classes.  Michael Funk gapped out on the short course kart field to grab the world championship and sweep the weekend. Meanwhile, in the higher-horsepower Midwest Mod Karts, Owen VanEperen made a run for the lead early, but John Holtger ran away in the second half for the win.

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MIKE ROTH PHOTO

 

Tyler Wians continued his late-season dominance, winning his third 1600 light buggy race out of the last four.  555 went for a wild ride in stock truck, rolling over multiple times over the jump in front of the crowd. Dylan Sharkey powered his way to the win in Stock Truck. 1600 Single Buggy thrilled the crowd as fans watching the Jumbotron saw Bruce Fraley inadvertently use a back-section tree as a barrel roll ramp, going over several times on the high-speed loop. Dylan Parsons held off a late charge from Tony Keepers to take the win.  Nick Byng jumped out to the early lead in Super Stock Truck, and was able to stay ahead through the finish despite pressure from Jamie Kleikamp.  Nick Visser moved up through the field and on to the podium, clinching the class championship.

 

MIKE ROTH PHOTO

 

The Sportsman Stock UTV race was a hectic scramble on the short track – Kyle Greaves looked to reclaim the points lead along with the championship and was in good position until he rolled over late in the race. Dexter Karban had the slight edge and captured the ring, while Gabe Johnson stayed out of trouble to finish 5th and capture the championship.

PRO Stock UTV was ruled by West Coast racers Brock Heger and Myles Cheek in a battle of Yamaha and Polaris. Cheek came through the pack but could not pass Heger, who held strong for the win. CJ Greaves rounded out the podium and Ryan Mulder secured the championship.

Kyle Chaney dominated the PRO Mod UTV feature, grabbing the holeshot and never looked back.  Tim Farr held down the second spot, and Tyler Livingston took home third.  After narrowly missing the 2017 championship with an injury, Rodney VanEperen completed his redemption tour and brought home the 2018 title.

 

MIKE ROTH PHOTO

 

Super Buggy saw racing veteran Mark Steinhardt up front early, but young phenom Michael Meister caught him before the halfway caution and surged to the lead. Steinhardt never relinquished second place despite heavy pressure from Mike Kirkham. Kirkham had an issue on the final lap and fell back. West Coast racers Sterling Cling and Broc Dickerson were locked over the finish line and Cling got the losing end of the deal, destroying his ridge rear suspension on the finish line pole and surrendering third to Dickerson.  But it was Meister with the win and his second consecutive Super Buggy championship.

The largest PRO 2 field of the year featured many drivers making their 2018 debut, including Brad Lovell. It was all Chad Hord early, but Keegan Kincaid got faster as the race went on, and eventually made his way to the front with Hord in tow. Andrew Carlson rounded out the podium, but the man of the hour was Mike Vanden Heuvel, who brought the PRO 2 back to the Flying Dutchman Racing camp for the first time in over a decade.

Cory Winner entered the day with a one-point lead over the three-way tie of Kyle Kleiman, Cam Reimers, and Chad Rayford, creating a winner-take-all situation on World Championship Saturday.  A stacked 16-truck PRO Lite field featuring a plethora of West-Coast talent threatened to throw a wrench in the established battle. Kyle Kleiman grabbed the holeshot as chaos endued behind him. Brock Heger and Ryan Beat were all over each other all race long and caught Kyle together in the second half.  Cory Winner made his run for the lead and championship, at one point passing Heger for third, but he couldn’t hang on and ended up spinning back in the pack. Kyle Kleiman kept cool under pressure, adding to his young but storied legacy and becoming the first back-to-back PRO Lite champion since Jeff Kincaid in 2009.

 

MIKE ROTH PHOTO

 

After Johnny Greaves horrendous fire on Friday night, his points lead over son CJ had dropped to a single point, creating another winner-take-all bout to the championship. Johnny took the early lead, but CJ passed him in the Argonne loop and led the rest of the way.  Johnny swung the truck as best he could, and pulled right up alongside CJ in Calamity Corner, but CJ had the ideal position and accelerated through the finish line, grabbing the win and scoring his fourth consecutive PRO 4 championship.  Bradley Morris was rewarded for his long travels with a podium finish.

 

MIKE ROTH PHOTO

 

2018 WORLD SPORTSMAN CHAMPIONS

Dexter Karban –  Sportsman SxS

Tyler Wians –  1600 Lite Buggy

Dylan Parsons – 1600 Buggy

Ben Passa – Formula 4×4

Aaron Konitzer – Classix

Dylan Sharkey –  Stock Truck

Mason Prater –  Mod Kart

Michael Funk –  Short Course Kart

Jason Scherer  – Ultra 4

 

For more information on Crandon International Off-Road Raceway visit www.crandonoffroad.com.