Ledford Dominates, Hammond Wins FALS Finale
By Rocky Ragusa
Fairbury,Ill. (10/7/23) Fourth starting Michael Ledford moved to the lead on lap two and desecrated his competition on his way to winning the season ending, MARS Racing Series Modified feature.For Ledford not only was it his 16th win of the season, but it was the biggest win of his career.
“ This is like the perfect ending to our season,” said the Fairbury and Farmer City track champion. “ This car has been unbelievable since we got it. Thanks to my brother, Jeffrey for his work on the shocks and Mark Bush Race Cars. If I had seen this track one or two years ago, I would have been 20th.”
Josh Harris got past Austin Friedman in the late stages of the race to take second. Frank Marshall held off Trent Young for fourth. Mike McKinney finished in sixth. 14th starter, Zeke McKenzie was seventh, followed by Mike Chasteen Jr., MARS Modified champion Michael Long, and Caden McWhorter.
40 Modified drivers made qualifying attempts. Friedman led group A with a time of 13.646. Group B was paced by Ledford with a time of 13.585. Friedman, Adam Pockrus, Ledford, and Marshall won their respective heat races. Austin Rettig took the B-main win.
Kankakee County Speedway track champion Matt Hammond took the lead at the start of the 20 lap, $1000 to win Pro Late Model race and led flag to flag for his fourth triumph of the year.
Hammond was able to withstand a brief challenge from Blaise Baker, but Hammond was able to pull away for the win.
“ We had a pretty good car all night,” Hammond spoke. “ Blaise was good on those restarts. I was just hoping for a green flag race.”
Baker took second, followed by Chris Dick, Ben Kirchner, Jacob Kolwyck, Logan Nesselrodt, Dan Kuhn, 14th starter Sam Moore, Mike Martin, and Brandon Sweitzer.
Hammond not only won the feature, but set fast time at 13.671, and won his heat race. Chase Wilson won his heat race.