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Dakota Continues to Surge

Dakota Continues to Surge

Dakota Hendrickson had one of his best weeks of the year this past week, scoring a 5th, two 6th's, a 9th, and a 12th place finishes in five feature events.

The weekend's events began at I-80 Speedway on Thursday night July 16th with the Nebraska 360's. After starting on the pole and leading most of his heat race Dakota wound up 3rd and was relegated to starting in the 6th row inside for the A Main. Dakota would battle all night to run in the top 10. After dropping to 14th at one point, the Omaha driver fought back to finish 9th.

Friday night saw the Omaha teen competing with the Sprint Invaders at Bloomfield Speedway in Bloomfield, IA. With a tough heat draw Dakota started 8th and finished 5th in his heat. Starting the A Main in the 7th row inside, Hendrickson was able to move steadily forward and was 6th at the Checkers.

Saturday night Dakota was back doing double duty at Knoxville Raceway, driving the Competition Technologies #4 in 410 action and Harley Van Dyke's 5H in 360 competition. It was also Town Crier Twin Features Night for the 410 cars.

Hendrickson timed in 8th quick in Van Dyke Racing's 5H and moved from a 6th starting spot to 4th in the heat race. In the 360 A Main Dakota drew the second starting position in the redraw and followed pole sitter, Billy Alley for the first 6 laps of the 18 lap event. Hendrickson battled current Knoxville 410 point leader, Justin Henderson, defending Knoxville 410 point champion, Ian Madsen and multi-time Knoxville 360 champion, Clint Garner for the remaining circuits. With one lap to go, the caution flew. On the restart Garner finally snuck by for the 4th spot and Hendrickson wound up 5th.

In the Lucas Oil Knoxville Championship Cup (410) Series, Dakota timed in 18th and started on the pole of the 3rd heat. Dakota was in control from the start, leading every lap of the heat and finishing a full straightaway ahead of second place Josh Schneiderman. Schneiderman was followed by Bill Balog, Craig Dollansky, Tim Keading, Logan Forler, Dustin Selvage, Brad Loyet, Jeremy Schultz, and Austin McCarl.

In the first Town Crier Twin Features, Hendrickson started 18th and quickly moved to 16th. Dakota settled into 16th for most of the first A Main, racing hard and remaining on the lead lap. With 2 laps to go Dakota was able to make the bottom side of the race track work really well and he rocketed past several cars to finish 12th.

With the inversion of the lead lap cars for the second Town Crier Twin Features, Hendrickson started in the second row outside. Dakota quickly moved past Lynton Jeffrey and Logan Forler to move into the runner-up spot on lap two, chasing race leader Dustin Selvage. Hendrickson dogged Selvage for several laps and then eventual race winner, Dusty Zomer entered the fray. As the top three battled at the half-way point, Hendrickson looked to take the lead entering turn 3. Dakota later said, "I was getting a great run off turn 2 and saw my opportunity to grab the lead entering 3, but in my excitement I just got the car into 3 a bit too hard." Zomer got an amazing run in the middle of the track and passed both Hendrickson and Selvage to take the lead. Hendrickson nosed Selvage for 2nd but Selvage made a good run on him into turn 1 and Hendrickson settled into 3rd. The back and forth among the leaders used up a lot of Hendrickson's right rear tire and as the last five laps reeled off Davey Heskins, 4-time Knoxville Nationals champion, Danny Lasoski, Craig Dollansky, Tim Keading and Logan Forler worked their way by Dakota. On the final circuit Dakota was able to slip the Competition Technologies #4 past Forler again. With the disqualification of Tim Keading for non-conforming mufflers, Dakota placed 6th in the second A Main.




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