EAST GRAND FORKS, Minn. (September 25, 2023) - With the season coming down to its final weeks, Tucker remains as busy as the summer months, appearing in three more shows last weekend, including his first races in the eastern time zone, culminating in a victory in the Whiskey Row Challenge on Sunday at Thunder City Speedway in Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada, which was worth $1,000. The win was Tucker's 26th of the 2023 campaign, as he also surpassed the 60 mark in top tens, scoring podium finishes in all three races.
Tucker's weekend behind the wheel of the No. 27 Shawn Horn Crary Real Estate / North Dakota Eye Clinic Kurshinsky began Friday night at Granite City Motor Park in Sauk Rapids, MN, where Tucker left with a victory in his most recent visit in July.
Following a third-place finish in his heat race, Tucker started on the outside of the third row in what proved to be the only Street Stock feature run at the three-eighths mile oval that weekend.
Tucker moved into the top five on lap two and closed in on a battle for third between Braden Brauer and Sam Fankhauser. What followed was a series of attrition for the street stock class overall as Fankhauser and Ty Agen both headed to the infield followed by a flip in turn two which brought out a red flag on lap nine.
Tucker capitalized on the restart, making it past Brauer to take the second spot. With ten laps left, Tucker reeled in leader Kaden Woodie, trying every line available to make the pass for the top spot before another red for a fire with three to go.
Tucker fell to third on the final restart of the race but held on for a podium finish despite close racing throughout the top five in the final three circuits.
With the weather in Central Minnesota and adjacent South Dakota deteriorating through mid-afternoon on Saturday, Tucker and crew decided to make the drive back to Ontario to complete the weekend at Thunder City Speedway in Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada where another third-place heat finish set up a start on the outside of row four.
Tucker immediately went three-wide with a pair of competitors on the exit of the second corner to move into the top five on the opening circuit. Moving to fourth the following lap before the first caution on the third lap.
Tucker went three wide for second in turn four on lap five but was forced to pause his charge through the field until another pair of lap ten restarts which saw him finally win the three-car battle for the runner-up spot against Tylar Wilson and Andrew Philo.
The final caution of the race caused the race to be cut due to time restraints, setting up a green-white-checkered finish. And what a finish it was. Tucker pulled even to race long leader AJ Kellar’s outside until the white flag flew, then snuck underneath the leader to take the point down the backstretch. A crossover by Kellar, however, won him the race with Tucker finishing second.
Sunday’s finale saw the race run in the afternoon hours, setting up a far different track than the night prior. Tucker charged from fourth to win his heat, placing him on the outside of the front row in the 30-lap feature.
Moving to the pole after a caution on the initial start, Tucker led the opening lap and continued to hold the top spot at the conclusion of a lap two caution.
The longest caution free period of the race came after another yellow on lap four. Tucker went on to build a straightaway lead just before the midway point as he started working lapped traffic.
In the 16-lap green flag run, Tucker lapped up to 11th place in what started as a 25-car field, but had his straightaway advantage erased with a caution with ten to go.
The final caution with seven to go saw Tucker then pull away by three-and-a-half seconds, winning his 26th feature of the year.
Tucker went three-for-three on the podium last weekend, making for 62 finishes thus far inside the top ten in his 74 nights of racing so far this season. The pursuit of the WISSOTA national title continues this week with a bunch of options from Madison to Mandan, so stay tuned to see where Tucker heads next.
Pederson Racing would like to thank all our sponsors:
Shawn Horn - Crary Real Estate
Amy Dallum Photography
North Dakota Eye Clinic
Olson Underground, inc.
Dahlstrom Motors Inc.
Markit County Grain LLC
Trilogy Ag Group
Bad Boy Mowers
Northern Valley Fertilizer
Don & Darleen Votava
Phil Thompson & Associates
Big Jim's Tire
B & E Meats
Applied Hi-Performance Products
Eagles Dakotah Aerie 350
Energy Release Products
Dynamic Welding and Machine LLC.
Bruce Hart Repair & Fabrication
Roxbury Racing Transmissions
Zeuli Race Engines
Mark Sinn “Sinner”
2023 Stats (Joey):
Top 5’s: 11
Top 10’s: 16
2023 Stats (Kelsi):
Top 5’s: 12
Top 10’s: 18
2023 Stats (Tucker):
Top 5’s: 54
Top 10’s: 62