Thursday, August 28, 2014

1994 -Senneker cooks in Badgerland 150

West Allis Wis. (August 28, 1994) - It's only appropriate that the driver whose car is sponsored by Johnsonville Sausage won the Badgerland 150.

As Charlie Murphy used to cook the bratwurst for his entire block in his sponsors' old commercials, the Ford Thunderbird of pole sitter Bob Senneker cooked the Badgerland field over the final 27 laps at the Milwaukee Mile to pick up his first American Speed Association victory of the season and the 75th win of his career.

It was the first victory for Senneker at the Mile since July 14, 1991, and the eighth time a pole-sitter has won in 27 ASA races at the Mile.

"It was rigged," joked Senneker. "So was qualifying. I didn't go that fast yesterday, they just put that time on the clock."

The last thing Senneker, the winningest driver in the 26-year history of the circuit, needs is help from sponsors to win a race. But he did get help from a late caution flag and a new set of tires to beat National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing driver Ken Schrader by 2.36 seconds.

"I didn't have as good a set of tires after the first pit stop as I did at the beginning of the race," Senneker said. "We had an awesome pit stop late in the race and changed the stagger a little bit."

Before a competition yellow caution flag came out on lap 115, ASA point’s leader Butch Miller and Schrader were pulling away from the field and preparing for a shootout over the final laps.

The yellow flag brought Miller and Schrader back to the field. The competition yellow, an ASA rule which puts the race under caution after a certain amount of laps are run (at Milwaukee it's 50, at smaller tracks it's different) to give the race a better chance to be won on the track and not in the pits.

Senneker, who was fourth on the restart, then overpowered the field the rest of the way. Mike Eddy followed Schrader home in third, Bangor's Steve Holzhausen was fourth, Harold Fair was fifth and Miller was sixth.

"I don't run enough (ASA) races to say if it's a good rule," Schrader said. "But a rule is a rule. It happened with 35 laps remaining, when if something could happen, it probably would happen anyway."

Miller, of Vermillion, Ohio, holds a 2,032-1,974 lead in points over Eddy, a seven-time season champion. Holzhausen, who won two of the last three races before coming here, is third with 1,886. Senneker, who won his only season title in 1990, is fourth with 1,782.

Schrader, a regular on the Winston Cup circuit, completed a six-day run of racing that would make frequent-flyer junkies salivate.

After a day off following the Goodwrench 400 in Brooklyn, Mich., last Sunday, the Concord, N.C., resident began a trek which took him to Sheboygan County Fair in Plymouth on Tuesday, Missouri on Wednesday before moving on to Tennessee where he raced Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

He moved to the half-mile banked oval in Bristol for Friday's Busch Grand National race, stayed there, and finished 19th in the Winston Cup Goody's 500, his worst finish of the week.

Sunday, he arrived in Milwaukee at 11 a.m. for the 2:30 p.m. race. On the seventh day, Schrader rests.

"It was a fun weekend," the weary one said. "I finished the worst in the race where I get paid the most."

Senneker, the first ASA driver to top the $1 million mark in earnings, was happy to end a rare victory drought that lasted more than 14 months.

"We have been fast all year long but we would have some minor mechanical problems or get caught up with another car on the track," he said. "We've been knocking at the door; I knew the win had to come."

Results -

1. Bob Senneker
2. Ken Schrader
3. Mike Eddy
4. Steve Holzhausen
5. Harold Fair
6. Butch Miller
7. Scott Hansen
8. Gary St. Amant
9. Brad Loney
10. Matt Kenseth
11. Kent Stauffer
12. Jay Sauter
13. Tony Roper
14. Tom Jones
15. Kevin Cywinski
16. Bret Bell
17. Bryan Reffner
18. Glenn Allen Jr.
19. Larry Zenk
20. Dennis Lampman
21. Tracy Schuler
22. Alec Pinsonneautt
23. Bill Baird
24. A.J. Cooper
25. Tom Harrington
26. John Freeman
27. Ted Smokstad
28. Dave Sensiba
29. Russ Gamester
30. Jeff Neal
31. Mike Miller
32. Joe Nott
33. Chris Miles
34. Randy Larson
35. Bobby Dotter
36. Todd Forbes
37. Dave Anspaugh
38. Ken Lund
39. Steve Carlson
40. Leighton Reese

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