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NICK SCHWIEN â ¢ Hays Daily News Mike Nichols (63) battles B.J. Wagoner during a stock car heat race Sunday at WaKeeney Speedway.

Nichols wins at WaKeeney, sweeps weekend

By NICK SCHWIEN

nschwien@dailynews.net

WaKEENEY -- Mike Nichols' eyes were a bit red and a little dirty.

Yet deep within them, there was a hint of something -- dollar signs.

And thanks to a weekend sweep of three races at RPM Speedway in Hays and WaKeeney Speedway on Sunday, the stock car driver from Harlan, Iowa, was looking forward to enjoying his Monday.

"For the first time in a long time, I'm looking forward to going to the bank," he said.

His wife smiled at that notion, too.

The two had braved hundreds of miles before starting the long weekend -- and the long drive home. But all those miles were going to be made a bit easier after his win Sunday.

"My memory becomes pretty short with the racing," Nichols said about the stellar start to the 2014 season. "You're usually only as good as your last race. Obviously it's something when on the way down you joke that it would be nice to come all the way down here and win all three of them. Now that it's behind us, wow. I just can't wait to go to the bank (Monday)."

Nichols didn't have an easy time Sunday, no thanks to Selden's Jason Rogers. Rogers started on the pole and led the majority of the race. He even overcame a bump off the track seven laps into the race on a restart.

Rogers was awarded the front spot back when Nick Tubbs was sent to the back for aggressive driving.

"It was hold it on the floor," Rogers said. "The next lap, I held it on the floor all the way to the chip into one and two and was hoping it stuck long enough to get it out."

He held off Nichols until lap 20, when the second slide job in as many laps gave Nichols the lead for good. A night earlier, Rogers finished third at Hays.

"I had nothing for Mike,"  Rogers said about Saturday night. "I don't know what you do. He's just on a rail."

Nichols led the rest of the way for his third win in as many nights in western Kansas.

"Starting in the fifth row at a weekly show or anytime, that's a long way to come," Nichols said. "Then when you have these guys -- Justin Temeyer ... Perry Misner, the Tubbs boys and Rogers -- you add all these guys together in one show and then draw the fifth row, you can't help but be discouraged because you know a lot of things need to go your way to have it all work out."

Rogers held off Jeff Tubbs for second by mere inches, and Angel Munoz finished fourth.

* After coming close to winning Friday and Saturday in Hays, Cody Gearhart finally got a modified feature win at WaKeeney. Gearhart grabbed the lead on lap three and pulled away for the easy win. Dylan Sherfick was second, followed by Jeremy Frenier and Tim Watts.

* Tyler Frye got by Cory Struckhoff for the lead on lap five of the sport mod feature and led the rest of the way in the 20-lap feature. Struckhoff was second, with Blaine Walt in third and Ben Kates in fourth.

* Adam Armstrong, who won Saturday night in Hays, won the hobby stock feature. He was followed by Brock Beeter, Garrett Hager and Brady Bencken.

* Ramsey Meyer went two-for-three during the weekend by taking the sport compact feature. Kiowa Higdon was second, and Art Herzog was third. Michael Smith finished fourth.

* Racing returns to WaKeeney Speedway at 6:30 p.m. Sunday.