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The chances to race during this soggy spring season have been limited. But Casey Mack has made the most of his opportunities. The East Grand Forks driver has five top-10 finishes -- including a win -- in six nights of racing. He's hoping for win No. 2 tonight at River Cities Speedway, where rain has claimed five of six nights of scheduled racing. Mack won the lone RCS feature of the season back on May 6. After his RCS win, Mack finished second two days later at Huset's Speedway near Sioux Falls, S.D.
Thursday was one of the few near picture-perfect weather days in Grand Forks this year. Today's forecast, however, looks to be another in a long string of disappointing forecasts for the city, River Cities Speedway, drivers and race fans. Tonight's scheduled racing at RCS is in jeopardy as the forecast calls for a 70 percent chance of rain today. The track has only had one night of racing so far this season. It already has lost four nights to poor weather. It's one of the toughest starts to the season RCS has had in years. Tom Corcoran is in his 42nd season of racing in the area.
Nolan Olmstead has been around racing for a long time as a driver and promoter. Olmstead is still involved in racing but he'll do more than just promote and drive season. He'll mix racing with weekend camping at the Devils Lake Speedway. After a two-year break, racing again will return to the Devils Lake area this season. Olmstead has reopened the Devils Lake Speedway. However, there will be some new twists to the season. Racing will resume this weekend with two nights of races.
Neither Grand Forks Red River nor Grand Forks Central will compete in next week's North Dakota soccer meet in Minot. But that didn't matter for a few hours Tuesday night at South Middle School, where Red River swamped Grand Forks Central 9-0 -- a win that improved the Riders to 4-6-3 on the season. The top four teams from the East Region and West Region advance to the state. But the Riders and Knights are out of the race for a trip to state. Central dropped to 1-12.
Mark Dobmeier and Brad Seng have won their share of races at River Cities Speedway over the years. Most nights, they're favored to win and they usually run up front. Tonight, both will buckle up behind the wheel of a school bus and hit the track. And both don't know what to expect. And for a change, they won't carry the favorite's tag into the race. River Cities Speedway will sponsor school bus racing tonight at the quarter-mile track.
David Spies had his best stuff of the season. And his best couldn't have come at a better time for UND. The pitching of Spies carried UND to a 6-3 win against the New Jersey Institute of Technology in the second game of Saturday's Great West Conference doubleheader at Kraft Field. The win snapped UND's seven-game losing streak. NJIT won the opener 11-5, which marked the seventh straight game in which the Sioux allowed 10 or more runs. The split left UND 5-14 in the Great West and 7-30 overall.
UND hasn't had trouble scoring runs lately. And two Sioux players -- Kris Kwak and Josh Ray -- were batting better than .500 in their last 10 games entering Friday's game against New Jersey Institute of Technology. Preventing runs, however, has been another story for the Sioux, who again were bit hard by the big inning in their 12-7 Great West Conference loss against NJIT at Kraft Field, where cool, wet conditions certainly weren't favorable for baseball. NJIT's six-run ninth inning was the difference in UND's sixth straight loss. UND dropped to 4-13 in the Great West and 6-29 overall.
Late April and early May have not been kind to River Cities Speedway the past few years. More miserable spring weather forced RCS officials to cancel tonight's races at the quarter-mile track -- the third time in four weeks the track has called off a night of racing. But this year is no exception. For the past few years, RCS has been plagued with poor weather at the start of the season. Last year, two of the first four shows were lost to the weather. In 2009, the first four scheduled nights of racing were lost.
By state law, UND will be known as the Fighting Sioux on Aug. 1. The NCAA, however, says UND will be penalized if it keeps its Fighting Sioux nickname and logo to start the 2011-12 athletic year. So, what does the school's athletic department do when it's caught in a crossfire between the North Dakota Legislature and the NCAA regarding the controversial Fighting Sioux nickname and logo? The department goes into a management mode.
UND football coaches are in the midst of their spring recruiting, a time when they search for future Sioux standouts. While no imminent end to the Fighting Sioux nickname and logo controversy appears to be in sight, that doesn't mean UND coaches are ignoring it on the recruiting trail. "We explain where we are on the issue and the history behind the name and logo," UND coach Chris Mussman said.