Tuesday, August 2, 2022

1988 – Miller Takes WIR Checkers

Butch Miller graces victory lane after winning the NASCAR/ARTGO Dixieland 250. 

Kaukauna, Wis. (August 2, 1988) – Butch Miller isn’t sure how it happened, but he’ll take the win just the same.

Miller, of Coopersville, Mich., relinquished his lead on lap 129, but bounced back to take a three-second victory in the NASCAR/ARTGO Dixieland 250-lap late model stock car event at Wisconsin International Raceway on Tuesday night.

Miller completed the 125-mile race on the half-mile track in 1 hour, 40 minutes and 44 seconds in a 1988 Camaro.

Rich Bickle of Edgerton finished second followed by John Ziegler of Madison, Dave Mader III of Maylene, Ala., and Steve Holzhausen of Bangor.

Miller earned $8,425 of the state record purse of $78,200 for his victory in the first race of the NASCAR/ARTGO Challenge Series.

Miller grabbed the lead from Bickle on lap 51, slipping inside of Bickle on the backstretch.

Miller led until lap 129, when he took a pit stop, relinquishing the top spot to Dave Mader, who had been running second.

Mader, however, still hadn’t pitted. When he finally came in on lap 163, Miller was there to reclaim the lead, which he held for the final 87 circuits all the way to the checkered.

“I don’t understand why he pitted when he did,” Miller said of Mader, who had built a 4.5-second lead and was the high finisher among southern drivers.

Still, Miller was pleased with the victory, calling the WIR track similar to one he raced back home in Michigan.

“This track is very difficult,” he explained. “It’s hard to put back-to-back laps together. I learned how to race this track by racing a track back home in Hartford, Mich., their pretty much the same.”

Two of the more notable Winston Cup drivers participated Tuesday night but neither could manage to crack the top-20 finishers.

Rusty Wallace was involved in a minor collision and dropped out to finish 22nd. Dale Earnhardt, who had cylinder problems, also dropped out and finished 24th.

Results –

1. Butch Miller, Coopersville, Mich.
2. Rich Bickle, Edgerton
3. John Ziegler, Madison
4. Dave Mader III, Maylene, Ala.
5. Steve Holzhausen, Bangor
6. Dick Trickle, Wisconsin Rapids
7. Jim Weber, Roseville, Minn.
8. Stanley Smith, Birmingham, Ala.
9. Tom Carlson, La Crosse
10.Gene Coleman, Menominee, Mich.
11.Pete Berken, Appleton
12.Robbie Reiser, Allenton
13.Lee Faulk, Crossville, Tenn.
14.John Olson, Stoughton
15.Steve Carlson, La Crosse
16.Scott Hansen, Green Bay
17.Mark Green, Owensboro, Ky.
18.Kevin Cywinski, Mosinee
19.Terry Baldry, Omro
20.Bob Iversen, Escanaba, Mich.

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