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Published September 01 2011

Skytland hangs on for A-Mods points title at Red River Valley Speedway

WEST FARGO – Hey Katie. You might want to hide the remote.

Hiding the remote has nothing to do with watching the Ronnie-Situation fight on “Jersey Shore” or another boring Yankees-Red Sox game.

It might be a good idea for Katie Aasen to hide the remote from her boyfriend, Cody Skytland, because he didn’t have the greatest race on Wednesday night. Even if it meant he walked away as the A-Mod series champ at the Red River Valley Speedway.

“You know, we have something special going on,” Skytland said prior to the race. “This car has run fast and it has run good everywhere we’ve been.”

Wednesday was not one of those nights. Skytland, who finished 14th, had a tough heat race, and his feature race arguably was tougher. A collision a few laps into the feature resulted in Skytland having to return to pit lane, and his crew worked feverishly on his car.

They did just enough for Skytland to nurse his way around the track and pick up his second career points championship.

His first title came last season when he won the speedway’s late-model championship. He’ll have a chance to defend that title at a special race later in the month.

The speedway’s 2011 regular season is over. But it will likely be relived on Cody and Katie’s TV.

Aasen said Skytland is the type that watches races – especially his own races – on TV frequently. He reviews his races to see where he could have improved, she said.

“I’ve given up. I know when he has the remote it’s going to be on racing,” she said before the race. “Or it is going to be on the History Channel. He likes watching ‘Ice Road Truckers.’”

Skytland entered the race with nine wins at multiple tracks. At Red River Valley Speedway, his worst finish in the A-Mods was third place.

Even if it was a bad race, it wasn’t like all was lost. Skytland got to walk away with another trophy.

That’s become commonplace, as Aasen said that Skytland has so many trophies at home, they’ve ran out of room.

Skytland’s 11-year career has amassed so many trophies that he has awards just sitting on the floor, Aasen said.

Though Skytland won, it wasn’t like Aasen was there to watch it.

“I’m a bad girlfriend,” she said before the race. “I have class (on Wednesday night.) I am in school to get a degree in photography.”

That’s fine. Chances are they will likely watch the race when she gets home.

Can you really blame the guy for liking cars? His father was a racer for many years, and then got his son into it.

Racing is something Skytland takes so seriously that last winter he raced down in Arizona.

“I’m a race car driver,” Skytland said. “When I go to the track, I go to win.”

That competitive nature is why Performance Auto team owner Jake Bitker said he wanted Skytland to race for him.

Skytland has raced for Bitker for two seasons now, and so far it has been a great relationship on and off the track.

Bitker described Skytland as a “smart driver” who is always making the right move.

“He anticipates what the person is going to do in front of him,” said Bitker, who along with his wife owns the Norman County Speedway in Ada, Minn. “He’s aggressive when he needs to be, and when he gets to the front, he’s very smooth with how he drives.”

Other drivers that picked up championships where:

E West Fargo’s James Tandeski picked up the Wissota Stock title.

E Valley City’s Greg Friestad won the B-Mods title.

E Fargo’s Corey Tammen won the Super Stocks title.

Wissota Stock

Heat 1 – 1. Todd Heinrich, Walcott, N.D. 2. Rick Schultz, Horace, N.D. 3. Royce Jawaski, Adrian, N.D.

Heat 2 – 1. James Tandeski, West Fargo 2. Jordan Zillmer, Gackle, N.D. 3. Kevin Oeder, Enderlin, N.D.

Feature – 1. Jawaski 2. Tandeski 3. David Goulet, West Fargo, N.D.

B-Mods

Heat 1 – 1. Erik Pratschner, Fargo. 2. Casey Arneson, Fargo. 3. Gannon Miller, Cummings, N.D.

Heat 2 – 1. Cory Wheeler, Casselton, N.D. 2. Scott Bintz, Jamestown, N.D. 3. Cole Haugland, Lakota, N.D.

Heat 3 – 1. Rich Pavlicek, Casselton, N.D. 2. Rusty Kollman, Carrington, N.D. 3. Jarrett Carter, Lisbon, N.D.

Feature – 1. Arneson 2. Kollman 3. Rick Hamel, Lakota, N.D.

Super Stock

Heat 1 – 1. Jamie Schultz, Harwood, N.D. 2. Kevin Robertson, Enderlin, N.D. 3. Todd Carter, Lisbon, N.D.

Heat 2 – 1. Brian Bernotas, Colfax, N.D. 2. Scott Jacobson, Fargo. 3. Cory Tammen, Fargo.

Feature – 1. Dave Shipley, Fargo, N.D. 2. Jacobson 3. Bernotas

A-Mods

Heat 1 – 1. Rich Pavlicek, Casselton, N.D. 2. Chris Prussman, Brookings, S.D. 3. Len Kneip, Gardner, N.D.

Heat 2 – 1. Blake Jegtvig, Hawley 2. Jason Thoennes, Garfield, Minn. 3. Cody Erickson, Minn.

Heat 3 – 1. Alex Engelstad, Beltrami, Minn. 2. Corky Thomas, Fargo. 3. Randy Tarno, Jamestown, N.D.

Feature – 1. Jegtvig 2. Thoennes. 3. Clayton Wagamon, Blaine, Minn.


Readers can reach Forum reporter Ryan S. Clark at (701) 241-5548.

Clark’s Force blog can be found at slightlychilled.areavoices.com