Breaking News: Opening Night Scheduled for Saturday April 28th. All Classes running. Modifieds $1000 to Win in Honor of Bud Welker and E-Mods $500 to Win in Honor of Kevin Bills. Check our FaceBook page for more info.
Big weekend set for Memorial day weekend at the Spoon!!
First up on Saturday Night the UMP Pro Late Models will have the night off. It will be Austism Awareness Night, $1.00 Hot Dog Night, while they last and we will be giving away 6 bicycles for the kids. 3 girl and 3 boys bikes, two for ages 5 and under, 2 for ages 6-8 and 2 for ages 9-12. On hand will be the Zane's Automotive Service UMP Modifieds running for $1000 to win, the Monical's Pizza USAC/IMRA Speed 2 Midgets, t...he Fulton Farm Service E-Mods, the Farmington Locker UMP Hornets and the Spoon 6-Shooters.
Pits open at 3, Grandstands at 4
End of Draw 4:45, Hot Laps 5:15
Racing to begin around 6
General Admission $13
Kids 10 and Under are FREE
Driver's Pit Pass $35
Crew Pit Pass $30
Kids 10 and Under Pit Pass $20
“It’s always tough to beat the boys from Illinois, so yeah, this one feels good,” said Greg Satterlee of Indiana, Pennsylvania Sunday evening at Spoon River Speedway. Satterlee spoke from Perkins Seed House Victory Lane after he hauled in a $5,000 check and a big trophy to go with it for winning the 40-lap Mother’s Day ALMS/MARS Super Late Model Special at the 3/8-mile high banked track outside of Canton.
The “boys from Illinois” he was referring to were some of the best Super Late Model drivers in the nation, like Bobby Pierce, Shannon Babb, Ryan Unzicker, and Jason Feger, all Illinois based and all former winners of big shows at the legendary oval.
Satterlee jumped out front from the opening lap of the Main Event and led until getting caught up in traffic on lap 13, when Pierce ducked inside Satterlee’s #22 and grabbed the lead.
“I knew Bobby was right there and I kinda got hung up trying to pick my way through there,” Satterlee said, “but I knew we had a good car and hoped I’d get a shot at getting back by him.”
After a caution bunched up the group on lap 14, the old saying “cautions breed cautions” came into play, as it started a 10—lap stretch filled with short green flag runs and cautions for action in the middle or rear of the field. When the cars finally got loose on a green flag run, Satterlee went to the outside of Pierce to regain the lead and never looked back.
He was asked about running different lines and searching for the quickest way around. “Yeah, the track was good and we had choices, so I was able to up and outside to get around him. It started to rubber up right where I was running towards the end, so I moved a little and it worked good enough,” he said.
Pierce stayed glued to the bottom and finished a solid second, followed by Billy Moyer, Jr., Moweaqua’s Shannon Babb, and Billy Moyer to round out the top five. Satterlee and Pierce started on the front row together and ran either first or second all night, while the Batesville, Arkansas-based Moyers battled each other for most of the event for third, joined by Babb for a thrilling three-car battle in the late stages of the race. Several times Babb shot in the middle of the two Moyer machines, but wasn’t able to clear them both. He finally got around the elder Moyer on a late restart to finish fourth after starting ninth.
The rest of the top 10 were: Ryan Unzicker of El Paso; Arkansas racer Timothy Culp seventh – he set a new track record for Super Lates in qualifying with a blazing 13.59 second lap; Rich Bell of Sheffield, near Kewanee; Bloomington’s Feger and Caleb Ashby from Cunningham, Tennessee. The field of 28 featured drivers from 10 states.
There were three heats in the division, won by Pierce, the elder Moyer, and Satterlee.
Also on the card were the UMP Modifieds, and 23 machines were on hand to go after the $1,000 first place check.
After several weeks of bad luck in the “redraw” to determine starting order for the feature races, Kewanee’s Ray Bollinger finally pulled a #1 out of the jar, on a night when he was in line for a $500 bonus offered by promoter Brad Denney if any driver could pull a double on the weekend and win both the Saturday and Sunday mains. After winning Saturday night, Bollinger was the guy with a shot at the extra $500, and was not looking forward to the redraw.
“I actually get more nervous before the redraw than I do before the racing now,” he laughed in Victory Lane. “Finally pulled a #1 tonight, though, and that’s just what we wanted.” He backed up that draw with a green-to-checkered run out front, and pocketed the $1,500 with bonus.
“This track, so smooth, so perfect, man, that’s why we love it here so much,” he said, effusively praising the track prep of the Denney’s, Brad and his father Morey. “It was smooth and after those late models nice and slick, just how we like it.”
The smooth slick track, noted as a “driver’s track”, is thought by many as the great equalizer in power and equipment, putting the emphasis on the driving, and the Mods put on their usual display of outstanding driving and racing throughout the field.
Nothing came easy for Bollinger, even from the pole, as Indiana’s Josh Harris and Peoria’s Allen Weisser kept pressure on throughout the 25-lap event. They settled for 2nd and 3rd, ahead of Quincy’s Michael Long and Canton’s Todd Bates, who made impressive back-to-back top five runs over the weekend as he returns this year to Open Mods after several years running the “E-mods” at the track.
“We’ve raced Josh (Harris) a lot, we know how good he is, and of course Allen (Weisser) and Michael (Long) are as good as it gets, so to win against a field like this is also special,” said Bollinger. The deep field also included Mike Chasteen, Jr. – a feature winner already this year at Spoon - who won his heat early in the evening and ran sixth, along with Mason City’s Flyin’ Brian Lynn (7th), NASCAR driver/TV commentator/dirt track barnstormer Kenny Wallace, who finished 8th. Jason Frankel and Brandon Roberts rounded out the top 10.
Along with Chasteen, Jr., heat race wins went to Frankel and Bollinger.
The UMP Hornets were also on hand Sunday, with Normal’s David Lauritson getting around heat race winner Shane Kelley in the feature to take the win, his first of the season. Rick DeFord finished third followed by Jimmy Dutlinger and Tyler Carlyle.
Back to Ray Bollinger to wrap up the night’s events:
“One more thing,” he said over the public address in Victory Lane before heading back to the pits, ”I want to say Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms in the stands and in the pits, and I want to thank each and every one of them for their support and for allowing all of us drivers to come out here and play in the dirt every weekend. Thank you to all Moms, this is your day!”
Some of the biggest name driver's in dirt track racing are set to appear at the high banks of Spoon River Speedway this Sunday Night May 14th competing for $5000 to Win the 40 lap main event. National Champion Bobby Pierce, Jason Feger, Dennis Erb Jr, Ryan Unzicker, Kevin Weaver, both Gardners (Bob and John), Billy Moyer Jr, Tanner English, Gordy Gundaker, Jose Parga and many more are expected. Sunday will cap off a three track weekend that starts at Farmer City on Thursday and ends at Spoon on Sunday with Fairbury inbetween. Also on hand will be the UMP Modifieds running for $1000 to win both Saturday and Sunday nights at Spoon. If a driver can win both nights at Spoon they will collect a bonus check of $500. The UMP Hornets will fill out the card on Sunday Night. Check Spoon's face book page for updates.
Creve Coeur driver Mike Chasteen, Jr. grabbed the lead away from Zac Oedewaldt early in Saturday night’s Zane’s Auto Service UMP Modified Feature at Spoon River Speedway and then held off a hard-charging deep, talented field to take the win on the track’s second night of racing in 2017.
And it was a victory he did not take lightly.
“It is always a huge deal to come here and win at this great track and be able to beat who we did, lots of great cars” the younger Chasteen said in Perkins Seed House Victory Lane as his father, a guy who certainly knows his way around the legendary high-banked oval, proudly celebrated with him. Chasteen, Jr. used a low and middle line for most of the race, instead of his familiar location right around the top of the track, and made it work on a night where the track developed some extremely rare ruts in it’s normal silky smooth surface. Chasteen had no complaints.
Spoon River Speedway is set to open it’s doors for the 34th year this Saturday Night April 22nd. Twenty eight events are scheduled this year featuring the Zane’s Automotive UMP Modifieds, the Perkins Seed House UMP Pro Late Models, the Monical’s Pizza USAC/IMRA Speed 2 Midgets (14 events), the Farmington Locker UMP Hornets, the Fulton Farm Service E-Mods and the Spoon 6-Shooters. Special events will include the MARS/ALMS Super Late Models on Sunday May 14th, the 4th running of the Gary Cook Jr Memorial on Sunday May 28th, the UMP Hell Tour Summer Nationals on Thursday June 22nd, The MSSC Street Stocks return on Sunday July 16th, the Lucas Oil POWRI WAR NON-Wing Sprint Cars on Saturday July 22nd, the 27th running of the UMP Modified
We are proud to once again have Monical's Pizza on board for the 2017 season. This year Monical's will be the Sponsor of the USAC/IMRA Speed 2 Midgets at Spoon. We also welcome back Zane's Automotive Service sponsoring the UMP Modifieds, Perkin's Seed House as sponsor of the UMP Pro Late Models, The Farmington Locker sponsoring the UMP Hornets, The Fulton County Farm Service sponsoring the E-Mods. We still have the 6-Shooter division open for sponsorship. There will be a point fund in all divisions paying out to the top 10 that race in 75% of their scheduled races at Spoon. The UMP Modifieds, UMP Pro L/M and USAC/IMRA Midgets will be guaranteed a $700, $500, $300 payout to the top 3. E-Mods will be $500, $300, $200 and UMP Hornets will be $300, $200, $150. Each Driver's pit pass will be $35 (Specials maybe different and will be announced) and $5 will go into that divisions point fund. On top of what is guaranteed 1st gets 14%, 2nd 10%, 3rd 7% then 4th gets 15%, 5th 13%, 6th 11%, 7th 9%, 8th 8%, 9th 7% and 10th 6%. This should end up with a nice point fund at the end of the year. The more cars you can bring on race night in your division the bigger your point fund will be at the end of the year.
Stay tuned for more announcements
I have had a lot of calls this week on the tire rules at Spoon for 2017 so here they are:
UMP Modifieds Only approved tire will be the M-30S, A-40S, M-60 and H-40. The M-60 and H-40 may be used as a RR tire option.... NO GROOVING Allowed on any tire. No Siping or Grooving M-30S Siping permitted on M-60 when used on RR. The A-40S and H-40 will NO longer be made after March 1st, 2017. Siping is permitted on the A-40S and H-40 until out of circulation during 2017.
E-Mods May use A-40S, A-40, H-40, M-30S. NO Grooving Allowed on any tire NO Grooving or Siping Allowed on M-30S M-60 may be used in future but not allowed at this time.
UMP Pro L/M M40 tire ONLY After May 30th NO Grooving or Siping Allowed on Rear tires. In 2018 there will be No Grooving or Siping of any tire.
UMP Super L/M Tire rules will be the same as Fairbury unless stated otherwise.
Spoon 6-Shooters May use USED A-40, A-40S or H-40 tires. NO new race tires allowed