GRAND FORKS, N.D. (May 21, 2021) – There may be a new King of the Bullring at River Cities Speedway. Grand Forks’ Austin Pierce won eight races at the three-tenths mile oval in 2020. The two-time Buffalo Wild Wings NOSA series champion returned to victory lane in convincing fashion on Friday night.
Pierce quickly went after Croaker and took the point with a slider off turn four on lap three.
The driver of the Opp Construction / Lithia Ford No. 2A checked out from the rest of the field while Croaker, Estenson, Jade Hastings, Nick Omdahl and Wade Nygaard all battled for second.
With eight to go, Hastings found a way around Croaker to take the second spot. Pierce had well over a full straightaway advantage over Hastings, but Hastings went to work on reeling in Pierce.
With five to go, Pierce was mired in heavy traffic which made his lead evaporate. Hastings had a run on Pierce with two laps to go, but a caution slowed the field.
On the green-white-checkered restart, Pierce set sail and opened up a comfortable lead. Nygaard came up to challenge Hastings for second, but it was well behind Pierce, who collected his 36th career NOSA win.
Hastings held on to the runner-up spot as Nygaard rounded out the podium.
“I can’t thank my crew enough. They set this car up and it’s been spot on almost every night. It was an awesome race track. There was a nice top groove that reminded me of the old River Cities. I ran the bottom there right away and that helped me to get around Croaker for the lead. Overall it was a good night,” said Pierce in victory lane.
A Feature (25 Laps): 1. 2A-Austin Pierce; 2. 8H-Jade Hastings; 3. 9N-Wade Nygaard; 4. 8BALL-Jack Croaker; 5. 0-Nick Omdahl; 6. 11M-Brendan Mullen; 7. 26-Blake Egeland; 8. 14T-Tim Estenson; 9. 99-Jordan Graham; 10. 31-Shane Roemeling; 11. 10TRB-Bob Martin; 12. 55-Nick Ranten; 13. 20A-Jordan Adams; 14. 17-Zach Omdahl; 15. 14-Tom Egeland; 16. 41-Travis Strandell; 17. 4-Colton Young; 18. (DNF) 10S-Josh Swangler
Heat 1 (8 Laps): 1. 2A-Austin Pierce; 2. 14T-Tim Estenson; 3. 55-Nick Ranten; 4. 9N-Wade Nygaard; 5. 8BALL-Jack Croaker; 6. 20A-Jordan Adams; 7. 99-Jordan Graham; 8. 26-Blake Egeland; 9. 41-Travis Strandell
Heat 2 (8 Laps): 1. 8H-Jade Hastings; 2. 11M-Brendan Mullen; 3. 0-Nick Omdahl; 4. 31-Shane Roemeling; 5. 14-Tom Egeland; 6. 10TRB-Bob Martin; 7. 10S-Josh Swangler; 8.