August 27th racing
Wallace #Parked it at FALS
By Rocky Ragusa
Fairbury, Ill. (8/27/16) The track champions for the 2016 were
introduced to the crowd, along with the top ten in each of the
four divisions. Kevin Weaver (Late Model, third title), Richie
Rich (second straight in the Sportsman), A.J. Meiferdt (Street
Stock), and Mike McKinney (Modified) both claiming their first
title. After the ceremony, racing was held in five divisions at
the Fairbury American Legion Speedway.
Racing began in the Sportsman class, with 13 drivers on hand.
Bryant Frechette and Scott Williams took heat race wins. Lake
Nichoalds took the lead from Scott Williams on the eighth lap
and looked to be on his way to another win in the 15 lap race.
On the restart of a lap 13 caution, Nichoalds car stalled at the
exit of turn two, bringing out a caution, and ending his night.
Brian Albus from Big Rock, in his swan song, inherited the lead
and took his second win of the season. ''Lake was going to be
hard to beat,'' said Albus, who was also the races hard charger
winner. ''I didn't think I could catch him and I was fine with
finishing second. It's too bad his night ended like that.''
Frechette, Amber Crouch, Brandon Pralle, Eric Saltzman, Anthony
Craven, Tyler Roth, Nichoalds, Blake Reid, and Williams
completed the top ten.
Starting the season as he began it, Barry Sauder of Creve Coeur,
was the class of the field in the 15 lap, Street Stock race.
Taking the lead from A.J. Meiferdt on the third lap, Sauder sped
away for his second win of the year. Meiferdt was the main
competition for Sauder, dropped out with two laps to go, due to
mechanical problems. ''Thanks to my dad and Mike Chasteen Jr.
for their help tonight,'' spoke Sauder. ''I have taken a few
weeks off to help Mike with his car. It feels good to get back
behind the wheel. That was an exciting race.'' Trailing Sauder
to the line were, Rick Thomas, Pete Odell, Don Hilleary, Joel
Funk (hard charger, in his first appearance this year), Matt
Hahn, Josh Hetherington, Kaleb Wood, Andy Thompson, and Robert
Cottom. Hahn, Meiferdt, and Sauder won heat races for the 23
Street Stock drivers.
The Hobby-Modified class had a season high 13 entrants. Josh
McKenrick and Mason Duncan scored wins in their heat races.
McKenrick of Bellevue, took the lead from Jason Brandt with two
laps to go, and won his first ever race at Fairbury. ''After
Peoria rained out tonight, we decided to come here. This is my
first time racing here. What an awesome night,'' said an excited
Former NASCAR star, Kenny Wallace has been on a streak this past
week. Wallace took the $1000 to win race at Lincoln, beating
Mike Harrison in a photo finish on Thursday, dethroning
perennial Kankakee favorite, Mike McKinney for another grand on
Friday, and tuned up for next week's $10,000 to win show at
Fairbury, by winning his first ever feature at Fairbury, in the
20 lap, Modified race. Wallace moved to the lead on lap 12 after
McKinney's car lost a driveshaft. Wallace had to hold off a
determined bid by Lance Dehm in the final laps, until Dehm
jumped the cushion with two laps to go. Wallace, always an
exuberant person, spoke after the win, ''This whole weekend has
been inspired by the late Bryon Clausen. I know his family
pretty well. When we left his celebration of life in Kokomo,
Indiana, Quality Aviation one of my sponsors told me, ''Herman,
go park it. That's a lot of pressure. To park it three straight
nights in a row, is the first time this has ever happened to me.
Thanks to my crew and all the fans for showing up. I will be
back next week for the $10,000 to win race.'' Ray Bollinger,
Dehm, Mike Learman (hard charger), Jeff Curl, Vince Cooper,
Tommy Duncan, Travis Kohler, Nick Clubb, and Nick Lueth rounded
out the top ten. McKinney has the fast qualifier of the 34
drivers on hand at a 14.047. Steven Brooks, Curl, McKinney, and
Wallace won heat races. Dave Dulceak and Kevin Weaver won the
Manhattan's Mike Spatola got by Kevin Weaver with three laps to
go, and took his fourth win in the 30 lap, Late Model feature.
Rusty Schlenk also snuck by Weaver, but ran out of time to make
a bid for the lead, settled for second. Weaver, Jay Morris, Joe
Harlan, Mike Mullvain, Steve Thorsten, Jason Wagner, Snooky Dehm
(hard charger), and Jon Small finished in the top ten, as
attrition took its toll on the 19 car field. Spatola set quick
time at a 13.165. Harlan and Weaver won the heat races.
This Saturday night will be the last race of the year for
Fairbury. The American Modified Series will host the Casey's
General Store Modified Nationals, paying $10,000 to the winner.
Drivers not making the 50 lap feature, will have a 20 lap, $500
to win race, sponsored by Mullin's Race Engines. Late Models
will also be racing in a 40 lap, $3000 to win contest.