From Bill W, Mike Campbell Photo
Nine nights of racing in a row will take it out on most. Brandon Wimmer was happy with the results during Ohio Speedweek with the All Star Circuit of Champions. He teamed with car owner Rick Ferkel and his #0 for a pair of podium finishes during a week that saw him charging forward each night.
Things didn’t start so well at Attica Raceway Park on Friday, June 18, as the night ended in a DNF. “We were caught in a deal at Attica, where someone was just trying to win it on the first lap,” says Brandon. “We had our front-end torn out in that deal and we were done for the night.”
The following evening, things went well down in Chillicothe at the K-C Raceway, where Brandon has a history of good runs. “We qualified well (10th) at K-C, and I always seem to go good there,” he says of the high-banked bullring. “I don’t know if it’s the banking or what. We were running really well in the feature in second, and we probably should have finished there. (Dale) Blaney was able to get by us late there, so we settled for third.”
It was on to Millstream Speedway in Findlay on Sunday, June 20. Brandon would advance from 15th to 11th in the feature. “The track was dry from the start,” he says. “We missed the setup a bit in the feature. It was as slick as it gets, and I tried to run the top and bottom both. It started to take a little rubber at the end, and we were able to move forward a bit.”
Another eleventh place finish came on Monday at Wayne County Speedway near Orrville. “It was so slick, everyone was around the bottom all night,” says Brandon. “We were able to get by a couple guys in the feature, but otherwise, it was around the bottom.”
Wimmer and Ferkel clearly had one of the fastest cars on Tuesday at the Hilltop Speedway near Millersburg. Unfortunately, a qualifying effort of 19th put them a ways back in the feature. Brandon would charge from 19th to 6th. “Hilltop was a place I really wish we would have qualified better, and that is true for the rest of the week too,” he says. “It would have put us in a better position to win. We were able to move up thirteen spots in the feature. I was trying to pass Dean Jacobs for fifth the last few laps. The car was really driving well. We were passing people right and left. Rick does a great job setting the car up on these dry Ohio tracks.”
After moving from row seven into the top ten at Waynesfield Speedway on Wednesday, discretion became the better part of valor in the heat of the action. “At Waynesfield, there is no wall on the backstretch,” says Brandon. “It has a decent banking that drops off right. You either go left around three and four at the start of the fence, or you go right into the pits. I was behind Stevie Smith, and it was dusty coming off two. I went off the edge and couldn’t get the car back over. I was headed for the wall, and just took it right into the pits. I think we had worked up to ninth or tenth by then.”
The best finish came at Sharon Speedway near Hartford, Ohio on Thursday. After qualifying sixth, Brandon started third and finished second. “We were able to qualify well at Sharon,” he says. “It was just a good night, and Rick did a great job of setting the car up. It was easy for me to drive it. We ran third most of the time. I was able to get by Tyler Walker later on, and I was actually gaining on (Tim) Shaffer late in the race. I just kind of ran out of laps at the end. We were happy with the night.”
At Lima on Friday, the only mechanical breakdown of the week resulted after Brandon had advanced into the top ten from row eight. “We were good in the heat, and we were going really good in the feature up in the top ten,” he says. “In three and four, something broke. We thing a heim broke on the rear arm. That sent me into the wall and I rode it down the frontstretch. That ended the night.”
Fremont Speedway’s finale saw the only DNQ for Brandon of the week. Others were noticing the great job the team did during the long week though. “We were moving forward every night, and we were pretty happy with the week,” says Brandon. “I never thought we’d race nine straight nights without Mother Nature interrupting us! Mr. Zemaitis from the Zemco team came over to us at Fremont and told us how impressed he was with how we did during the week. It was pretty neat to have a competitor come over and give us a compliment like that.”
This Saturday, the team is weighing the options of racing two features at Fremont, or with the All Stars at K-C.
Brandon has realized that a driver not only needs good equipment on the racetrack, but needs to also be in the best physical shape to be a success. That’s why Brandon has added a wellness program to his daily routine, which includes adding a line of scientifically validated nutritional products from Mannatech. Mannatech, Incorporation is a leading developer and provider of proprietary nutritional supplements, weight management products and skin care solutions. Athletes around the world rely on Mannatech products because they are formulated from high quality, natural plant sources and are formulated without any substances banned by major worldwide anti-doping agencies.
Brandon has been invited to serve on an elite team of athletes called Team Mannatech because of the results he has had with the products and will be working to share his experience with drivers, crews and fans. With more than 200 athletes representing countries around the globe, Team Mannatech members have been drawn from the exclusive ranks of sports legends, the everyday athlete and young enthusiasts destined to become superstars. They inspire action and attract passionate wellness champions and are all role models for their sport, committed to helping people of all ages lead a healthy, active lifestyle.