A summer's worth of racing came down to less than a second to determine the International Motor Contest Association Hobby Stocks points championship Sunday at Nodak Speedway.
Minot's Brock Beeter finished 0.083 seconds in front of older brother Brandon to claim his first points title at Nodak Speedway and his second championship in as many nights. Brock Beeter won the championship at Williston Basin Speedway on Saturday.
"I feel great," Brock Beeter said. "I've always wanted to win one at Nodak Speedway, my home track. I've been working hard all year and it was between me and my brother, one point. You can't ask for anything better. The way it finished, door to door, side by side, championship was determined by a foot-and-a-half."
Minot native Brock Beeter (48) rounds turn one ahead of Scott Joern during an IMCA Hobby Stocks heat race Sunday at Nodak Speedway. Beeter finished second in the feature race to clinch the track’s points championship.
Brock Beeter - entering the night with a one-point lead over his brother - started the feature 12th and quickly moved into fourth by the second lap. Brandon Beeter - starting 11th - spun out on turn two of lap three and was charged with causing the race's first caution. Even with Brandon forced to the back of the 20-car field, Brock knew his brother wasn't out of contention.
"He has the same attitude I do," Brock Beeter said. "We're never out of it. We know we're good enough to work our way up from the back. He had 13 laps. That's an eternity when you're out on the race track."
He was right. As Brock Beeter moved into second behind Minot's Dana Brandt, Brandon Beeter was clawing his way back, running fourth by lap seven. He made his way into third by lap nine and inched his way closer to his brother.
IMCA Hobby Stocks
Heat 1: 1. Dana Brandt, Minot; 2. Reid Kinden, Watford City; 3. Jakob Kasprowics, Turtle Lake.
Heat 2: 1. Brandon Beeter, Minot; 2. Ben Zietz, Velva; 3. Keith Mattox, Ray.
Heat 3: 1. Brock Beeter, Minot; 2. Scott Joern, Minot; 3. Beau Deschamp, Bottineau.
A-Main: 1. Brandt; 2. Brock Beeter; 3. Brandon Beeter; 4. Jason Olsen; 5. Mattox.
IMCA Sport Modifieds
Heat 1: 1. Robbie Conway, Westhope; 2. Matt Lang, Turtle Lake; 3. Eric Folstad, Glenburn.
Heat 2: 1. Jeff Hooker, Minot; 2. Myles Tomlinson, Turtle Lake; 3. Nathan Burke, Minot.
Heat 3: 1. Erik Laudenschlager, Surrey; 2. Robby Rosselli, Minot; 3. Matt Lizotte.
B-Main: 1. Varion Hetle; 2. Shannon Cree; 3. Steve Jensen; 4. Darren Medler; 5. Jon Lizotte.
A-Main: 1. Rosselli; 2. Hooker; 3. Kelly Henderson; 4. Burke; 5. Darren Medler.
Heat 1: 1. Drew Papke, Bismarck; 2. Paul Huettl, Bismarck; 3. Shane Williams, Minot.
Heat 2: 1. Steven Kuntz, Bismarck; 2. Donavin Wiest, Wishek; 3. Steve Pankowski, Minot.
A-Main: 1. Wiest; 2. Kuntz; 3. Huettl; 4. Tom Wagner; 5. Pankowski.
IMCA Stock Cars
Heat 1: 1. Joe Flory, Williston; 2. Dalton Flory, Williston; 3. Justin Striefel, Minot.
Heat 2: 1. Chad Strachen, Minot; 2. Brett Woznicki, Minot; 3. Randy Conway, Minot.
A-Main: 1. Woznicki; 2. Conway; 3. Dalton Flory; 4. Kelly Henderson; 5. Strachen.
Heat 1: 1. Mike Hagen, Williston; 2. Travis Hagen, Williston; 3. Troy Kittler, Turtle Lake.
Heat 2: 1. Eric Sinness, Williston; 2. Shawn Anderson, Minot; 3. Robert Hellebust, Kenmare.
A-Main: 1. Drew Christianson, Minot; 2. Hellebust; 3. Ed Turnbull; 4. Steve Pfeifer; 5. Anderson.
"I dug deep into the experience box," Brandon Beeter said, "and calmly moved my way forward. I wanted to shove some people aside, but I held my calm. I didn't know if I was going to get there or not."
With one lap remaining, Brandon Beeter made his final push for the points title. And with one final turn, the two brothers were side by side with the title just a straightaway from reality. The two traded a little paint on the straightaway before Brock edged Brandon by the hood of his car.
Had Brandon Beeter passed Brock at the end, the two would have finished tied in the points standing, but Brandon would have won the championship on the feature-win tiebreaker. Brandon Beeter has two feature wins at Nodak Speedway this year and Brock has one.
Despite finishing second, Brandon Beeter couldn't help but smile when reflecting on the race's final moments.
"What a cool way to end the year," he said. "That's the biggest thing. We raced neck and neck all summer, side by side many times for feature wins. Why not come down to the championship side by side?"
Brandt won the feature and finished eight points behind Brock Beeter and six behind Brandon Beeter.
Minot's Steven Pfeifer made things interesting on his quest to capture the IMCA Modifieds championship. Running third with nine laps remaining, Pfeifer and Minot's Allen Kent - trailing Pfeifer by four points - collided on turn two, all but leaving the championship in the hands of the officials. Kent was charged with the caution and forced to the back, assuring Pfeifer's championship.
"Anything can happen around Minot so I'm sitting here thinking 'How are they going to call this because I know this should be an easy one, but that doesn't mean it's going to go that way,' " Pfeifer said.
Pfeifer finished third and Kent - last year's champion - placed seventh. Minot's Drew Christianson won the race, leading the final 17 laps after leader Mike Hagen went to the pits for repairs.
Minot's Nathan Burke became just the second driver to win two points titles in one season at Nodak Speedway. Jordan Boyce was the first to accomplish the feat in 1996.
Burke started his night by finishing fourth in the IMCA Sport Modifieds feature. Burke had a 19-point lead on Minot's Robby Rosselli entering the race. Rosselli won the race, but had to settle for second place in the point standings.
Burke closed out his night by defending his points championship in the IMCA Stock Car. With a 15-point lead over Minot's Kelly Henderson and Bob Fuegmann, Burke was content to coast in the middle of the pack. He finished sixth. Henderson finished fourth to take sole possession of second in the standings as Fuegmann placed 10th. Minot's Brett Woznicki won the race.
Steven Kuntz was the only driver outside of Minot to claim a points title Sunday. The Bismarck driver finished second in the INEX Legends feature and won the championship by nine points over Bismarck's Paul Huettl. Wishek's Donavin Wiest won the race and finished third in the standings.
Racing returns to Nodak Speedway at 7:30 p.m. Friday with the first of three nights of Motor Magic. Friday features the enduro race.
Mike Kraft covers racing, hockey and high school sports. Follow him on Twitter @MKraft23_MDN.