Worthington, Ohio---We are at midseason, and that means we are closer to the Enderle Memorial Pull-Off, the National Tractor Pullers Association's all-star invitational season finale, than we are to the beginning of the 2018 season. Tickets for the Saturday, September 15 event at the Champaign County Fairgrounds in Urbana, Ohio will go on sale at the NTPA Webmall (ShopNTPA.com) on Wednesday, August 1. For event details, check out AllStarPull.com.
We'll discuss the state of the 13 premier-level races in our separate Grand National Road to the Enderle Traffic Report. Below, let's have a look at the Regional National battles---some of which have concluded, some of which are just heating up---that will determine 41 qualifiers across 11 divisions. (Report for week of July 10-16. Berths clinched: 9. Current Enderle RN point standings.)
RN LIGHT SUPER STOCK
- Berth A (Region II Champion): With South Bend behind them and three hooks left on the schedule, Jason Irvin's "Drunkin' Punkin'" has a place-point lead over Jerry Yantes' "Spirit of Oliver." Next up: Springfield, July 21.
- Berth B (Region III/V Total): The race for this berth includes three hooks, starting with Decorah on July 12.
- Berth C (Hopkinsville): Two hooks in Hopkinsville settled this berth in favor of Robert Galloway's "Hulk Alcohol Edition." Andy Cox drove it to a tiebreak victory over Daniel Northcutt's "On the Edge."
RN HEAVY SUPER STOCK
- Berth A (Region II Champion): Over Charlotte's two hooks, John Pfeiffer's "Pfeiffermax" and Ed Johnson's "Big Johnson" (-23) each earned 59 points. Barry Eliker's "Buckeye Bandit" (-7) tallied 54, and that stretched Pfeiffer's lead with only Fremont and Wauseon remaining..
- Berth B (Region III/V Total): Ken Witt's "Mr. Yuk" won a three-Deere battle in Decorah over Bob Gansemer's "Ruttin' Deere" (-1) in the first of five hooks for this slot. Monticello is next.
- Berth C (Raleigh 2017): On the strength of a third and a fifth in Raleigh last October, Ronnie Strickland's "Another Outlaw" will make another appearance at the Enderle. He knocked off the Beasleys' "Farmers Pride" by two.
- Berth D (Hopkinsville): Brandon Hunt found his quarry with two no-doubt wins at near-hometown Hopkinsville. His "Liv'n a Dream" is in the show.
RN SUPER FARM
- Berth A (Allegan 2017 + 2018 Region II Through Tipton): A 54-point week across LaPorte and Charlotte has the Caseys' "Whoopie Maker" up 17.5 points in the chase for this berth.
- Berth B (Allegan 2017 + 2018 Region II Through Tipton Runner-Up): But second place has changed hands, as the Capozzos' "Cruel Intentions" (+3.5) continued its brutal assault on Region II. It has won each of four hooks this year for 119.5 points and overcame its deficit to the Caseys' "Totally Exposed" from missing Allegan. In the same situation and hoping to catch up, too, are also Jorge Zenz's "Minor Setback" (-7) and Lee Butts' "Press On" (-7.5).
- Berth C (Region III Champion): Mitch Fehn's "Red Storm Reloaded" is up by one point in the early going, having placed fourth and second in Ellsworth and Tomah. The Rohdes' past-champion "Somethin' Fierce" (-1), and the Hardys' Dairyland-winning "Gold Digger" and Dan Schulte's "Binder Express" (both -2) are in closest contention.
- Berth D (Raleigh 2017): Burnace Vandergriff picked a good weekend to vacation in North Carolina. The Deere driver from the Volunteer state qualified his "Green Fever" on the strength of Saturday afternoon's hook at the State Fair, and it stood when Pinetops was washed out.
- Berth E (Region V Champion): It was supposed to be three hooks over the opening weekend, but Mother Nature made other plans Friday in New Hampton. Taking both of the classes that did happen were Rod Deck and "Dream On," as they look to add another championship to their resume. Three-time regional titlist Phil Kelley ("Red-Blooded Binder," -3) is trying do the same, while Dan Schulte's "Binder Express" (-6) and Ryan Jensen's "Ryno" (-8) are on the periphery with two to go.
- Berth F (Hopkinsville): Michael Fanning has arrived. With a third and a win in western Kentucky, "Bad Habit Is Back" is your Mid-South qualifier. Finishing a heartbreaking second was Cranford Jennings; his "Bare Bones Binder" barely lost on a tiebreaker.
RN PRO STOCK
- Berth A (Allegan 2017 + 2018 Region II): With a second on Friday night in London, the Campbells' "Soup Line Express" pulled into a tie for the division with the Whitney/Aller Team's "Ground Force" (+29). But Allegan accounts for the gap in the Enderle standings.
- Berth B (Allegan 2017 + 2018 Region II Runner-Up): "Soup Line Express" (+16) has its relatively comfortable lead over two-time champ Ryan Walters' "Chasin' Tail" because it's been out all three times this year, while Walters made his first hook of this season in Madison County.
- Berth C (Hopkinsville): "El Nino" stormed to a first and a second in Hopkinsville, stamping Philip Parish's pass to Urbana.
RN LIGHT PRO STOCK
- Berth A (Region II East Through Canton): Scott Webb's "Ragin' Red" followed a secondin London with a first in Wilmington to vault into first. Kendall Houk's fourth and fifth with "Nothing Special" kept him within five points, while Terry Shafer's "Bad Company" (-7) slid from first to third. The Eastern Light Pros' busiest week is this one, with action in five of the next seven nights ending in Owensville.
- Berth B (Region II West Champion): Greentown (second) was good to the "Bare Necessities" of Mark and J.D. Wiederhold, while LaPorte (ninth) and Charlotte (seventh) weren't so hot. But why build a lead if you don't use it, and theirs is still nine over the Hollands' "Black Tornado" and 10 over Mike Palmer's "Red Avenger Classic." The West just had its "Killer Weeks" and gets a breather until Hamilton.
- Berth C (Region III Champion): With two down and two to go, the Birkholzes' unnamed 1456 leads Alan Cook's "Black Thunder" by four and Kurt Afdahl's "Weekend Mistress" by eight. Houston (Minnesota), they'll be comin' to see you on July 28.
- Berth D (Raleigh 2017): Mark Garrett's "Southern Smoke" sealed its envelope last October at the Showdown. A Friday night win was all it took once the Pinetops 300 was zeroed out for 2018.
RN LIMITED PRO STOCK
- Berth A (Region II Champion): With two hooks in northwestern Indiana, Travis Wisel's "Irrational Behavior" has methodically built a three-point lead over reigning champ Brad Boldry's "Smoke Fever." Fort Recovery at the end of the month will account for half of the four remaining hooks.
- Berth B (Region III Champion): Most fortunes reversed between Ellsworth and Tomah, but the Ploetzes' "Big One" stayed level in posting two fourths. They hold a one-point lead over Craig Braun's "Hampton Hooker," which got 30 points after a third in Tomah, and a three-pointer over Bryan Deck's "One Bad Apple," new to the division this year after several seasons in Super Farm. It's off to Anoka for a couple of hooks July 26-27.
- Berth C (Region V Champion): The Figanbaum/ Vsetecka Team's "Instigator" scored a second and a first around New Hampton's Session One storms and is now up six over the Ploetzes' "Big One". Lindstrom/Sather team tractors "Adrenaline Rush" (-8) and "Hyper Harvester" (-10) still have a shot, but time's running short: Monticello and Waverly are all that's left.
RN TWO WHEEL DRIVE
- Berth A (2018 Region II East Through Findlay): Brown City, Michigan is still partying. (Trust us.) Jacob Shephard scored national wins one and two in London and Wilmington and now owns the division and Enderle lead with "Alcohol Addiction Retapped." Bill Widenmeyer's "Twin T" (-1) has three top-fives, and the Secrests' "Nuthin' EZ 'Bout It" (-2) is keeping it close. Six hooks remain, and three of them come this week: Lebanon, Mount Vernon, and Owensville.
- Berth B (Region II West Champion): Randy Petro's winning streak with one or the other of his "Kathy's Komplaint"s finally ended in Charlotte, but "Vintage"'s lead stands at five over "Nuthin' EZ." From there, it's 26 back to third-place "2 Timin'." A return to Michigan---Hartford, to be precise---comes on Tuesday.
- Berth C (Region III Champion): Wayne Timmerman's "Showtime" owned Ellsworth and thus leads by place points over the Austin/Stampfli "Twisted Tight," the Johnson/Thompson "A Bit of Magic III," and Dustin Amundson's "Bottoms Up." They're off until Anoka.
- Berth D (Pinetops): With Pinetops' cancellation, no hooks remained on which to base an invitation. Hence, this berth will remain vacant.
- Berth E (Region V Champion): Decorah and New Hampton pushed this race to near conclusion. With only Monticello to go, "Twisted Tight" holds a one-point advantage over "Showtime," which would hold the tiebreaker if needed.
- Berth F (Hopkinsville): Wesley Foster's "Barbwire" jumped to first and second in Hoptown to win this berth by a point over Evan Anderson's "Playin' Hooky."
RN FOUR WHEEL DRIVE
- Berth A (Region II Champion): Steve Elchinger's win in Charlotte pulled "Jus' Passin' Thru" into a flat-footed tie with Ron Newell's "Temporary Insanity." Eaton County's second- and fourth-place finishers, Dave Moore's "King Kutter" (-3) and Pat Pixley's "Detonator" (-4), are next in line heading for Hamilton.
- Berth B (Region III Champion): Before the July 21 trek to Mandan, it's Curdtown champ Cory Lemirande's "Breakin' Da Law" sitting atop the standings. Lawrence Line's "Totally Hooked," Seth Davis' "Back Feed," Carol Suchy's "Totally Geared," and Dan Klosinski's "Extreme Whiplash" are second through fifth.
- Berth C (Pinetops): With Pinetops' cancellation, no hooks remained on which to base an invitation. Hence, this berth will remain vacant.
- Berth D (Region V Champion): Like Region II, the race for this berth features a two-way tie: Brian Loosbrock's "American Iron" and Matthew Davis' "Outrage" each have 97 points. Unlike Region II, however, we're just one hook away from the finish line. It'll be in Monticello, where New Hampton winner Jamie Busch ("Thunder Struck," -3) and runner-up Lemirande (-3) will try to make one more big move.
RN STAINLESSDIESEL.COM PRO STOCK DIESEL 4x4 3.0
- Berth A (2018 Region II East Through Canton): A pair of seconds has defending regional champ Rob Wright and "All Attitude" up by one in the East. Jeff Hossler has a win and a third with "Flirtin' with Disaster" to hold second, while Nickolas Stamm's "Frank" picked up its first Eastern victory in Wilmington to get within three. They're due at Court House Tuesday night.
- Berth B (2018 Region II West Through Tipton): It was a week of highs and lows for Stamm. A broken axle on the test hook at London's Eastern event followed "Frank"'s first win at Charlotte, which drew him within five of point leader Adam Hallien's "Wrecker." Hossler (-9) won at LaPorte on Tuesday to move into the top three. The West is done until Cassopolis on the last day of July.
- Berth C (2018 Region II Combined Through Tipton): "Frank" and "Flirtin'" (-2) are tops here; Hallien (-46) and Jordan Jackson's "Billet Steel & Sex Appeal" (-54) need one or both to falter.
RN MODIFIED MINI
- Berth A (Allegan 2017 + 2018 Region II North Through Hudsonville): The battle for the Northern berth moved into 2018 in Charlotte, where David Lacey's "Triple Play: Double or Nothing" rode a late hook to victory. Lacey's lead is six over his other tractor, "Triple Play Unchained," and the Bultmans' "Stress Relief." Hartford is the next of a half dozen remaining stops along this path.
- Berth B (2018 Region II South Through Canton) Ken Bultemeier's lead with "WAE Flip Side" shrank to two points in Wilmington over both Art Mendez' "Scratchin' 4 Traction" and Lacey's "Double," the night's runner-up. The Clinton County winner, "Unchained" (-7), is now fourth, while Phil Curtis' "Runnin' on Empty," which qualified for the Wilmington pull-off, is 12 back. It's on to Springfield on Saturday.
- Berth C (Region III): We're halfway home as of Ellsworth, and Minnesotan Bret Berg's unmonikered MINI is up by one over Ontarian Lacey's "Double," by two over Californian Donnie Reeve Jr.'s "Mini Fever," and by three over Wisconsinite Nathan Hoffman's "Shakin' Shamrock." Ridgeland is the finale September 2.
- Berth A (Region II Northwest): Ryan Writsel posted his second win of the season in Charlotte; his "Lucky Stryke" is now up six on Alan Judy's "Raptor" for the Northwesten lead. Mason on August 3 is next.
- Berth B (Region II Southeast through Zanesville): Despite two hooks in the Southeast still being on the calendar, Old Washington and West Salem come too late for this year's qualifying. .Writsel won again in Wilmington to take a two-point lead over Todd Feiss' "S'no Farmer" going to Fayette County on Tuesday. Todd's wife Tarry, who won Marion but was forced to bump in Wilmington, is within seven on "Feissty Farmer."
- Berth C (Anoka): It's a two-hook Gopher State shootout to punch someone's ticket.
- Berth D (Raleigh 2017): After his triumphant return to competition, Randy Davis will have had nearly a year to celebrate his invitation. After his first and third in Raleigh to break a tie with Sharon Everman's "Wild Hare," his "Running Bear" clinched the berth when Pinetops was cancelled.
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The NTPA is the sport’s oldest and most respected truck and tractor pulling sanctioning organization. Governed by a board of directors, the NTPA is managed by World Pulling International (WPI), an independently owned entity. Headquartered in Worthington, Ohio, the NTPA provides rules and regulations and the infrastructures required for organizations throughout the country to arrange truck and tractor pulls. The 2018 NTPA Championship Pulling Circuit is sponsored in part by Case IH, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Alliance Tire, Enderle Fuel Injection, MAC Trailer, Ag Protect 1, Shell Rotella, STOP-FYRE®, Cen-Pe-Co Lubricants, Columbus Diesel Supply, Heritage Iron, Stainless Diesel, Midwest Wheel Inc., the National Tractor Pulling Championships in Bowling Green, Ohio, PowerBore Cylinder Sleeves, Profab Machine Inc., the Budweiser Dairyland Super Nationals in Tomah, Wisconsin, and Riverside Engine Inc.
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