Ramirez takes top prize in USMTS North Iowa Nationals at Mason City
After a few near misses during the first half of the 2023 United States Modified Touring Series (USMTS) season, Dereck Ramirez busted into the win column with the series with a triumphant performance on Saturday evening at Mason City Motor Speedway aboard his S&S Fishing & Rentals No. 4R Koda Services / Boom-Test Well Service/ Raw Truck Wash / Hughes Racing Chassis / Cornett Racing Engine Modified.
He claimed his fourth win overall of the 2023 season from the fourth starting spot.
“It’s been a trying year. This deal is tough now, everybody’s so close together and it’s just hard to make anything work. My two guys, Steve and Marco, they work their tails off. They never give up on me and I can’t thank them enough for what they do,” Ramirez shared. “I tried to give her away there with three or four to go. I was getting free going into (turn) one there and I knew I needed to move up and come back down the racetrack. I got in there a little hot and pushed and I thought ‘Well I’m just going to give it to whoever is behind me.’ Thankfully nobody got past me and we got the win.
“We’re going to take this week off before getting back to action next week with USMTS.”
Dereck Ramirez bested a field of 38 Summit United States Modified Touring Series (USMTS) entries at Mason City Motor Speedway (Mason City, Iowa) on Saturday to score a $10,000 payday in the North Iowa Nationals finale.
Ramirez started the evening with a second-place effort in his group qualifying session and finished fourth in his heat race on the 1/3-mile oval. He began the 50-lap A-Main from the fourth position, taking the lead on the 18th lap.
He led all but one of the remaining circuits to claim the win by 0.848 seconds over runner-up Tanner Mullens. Jason Hughes came home third, with Carlos Ahumada Jr. fourth and Jake Timm rounding out the top five.
The victory was the first for Ramirez in USMTS competition this season and his fourth of 2023 overall.
Saturday’s win capped a stellar weekend for Ramirez, which saw the 2021 USMTS champion take three Top-10 finishes in the 10th annual North Iowa Nationals event.
The three-day program kicked off on Thursday with 37 USMTS Modifieds in the pit area. Ramirez set the second-quickest time of his group during qualifying, then came home third in his heat. He started the night’s 35-lap feature from the second spot and stayed up front the whole race, finishing as runner-up, 2.061 seconds behind winner Jim Chisholm in the $3,000-to-win showdown. Third place went to Jason Hughes, with Alex Williamson fourth and Tim Ward fifth.
On Friday, 42 USMTS entries were on hand seeking the night’s $5,000 first-place payout. Ramirez turned in the quickest time in his qualifying group, but finished fifth in his heat, putting him in a B-Main. After taking the checkered flag in the “B,” Ramirez rolled off 15th for the 40-lap main event. He picked up five spots to secure a top-10 result.
With the successful weekend, Ramirez jumped from seventh to fifth in the USMTS National point standings.
Full results can be found at www.usmts.com.
Ramirez will be idle this week before continuing his 2023 campaign on Thursday – Saturday, August 3 – 5 with a USMTS triple header. The tour will visit I-70 Motorsports Park on Thursday before invading Lakeside Speedway (Kansas City, Kan.) on Friday. The three-race swing draws to a close on Saturday at Lucas Oil Speedway (Wheatland, Mo.)
Article Credit: Buck Monson image