Breaking News: Play Day is Scheduled for Sunday April 9th and Saturday April 15th. Opening Night is Scheduled for April 22nd.
The Tuff 50 Features for Modifieds and Pro Late Models took center stage at Spoon River Speedway Saturday night, and 90 degree temps with high humidity at race time just added to the toughness.
With the race track ultra smooth and drivers able to drive successfully in a number of grooves, the lead in both 50 lappers changed several times throughout the night, making it a great and unpredictable show for the good sized crowd on hand at the high-banked oval.
And as with all longer-than-normal races, patience and equipment care paid off for both winners, Nick Bauman in the Monical’s Pro Late Model Division and Allen “A-Dog” Weisser in the Perkins Seed House Modified feature.
August in the Midwest is a month where everyone realizes the dirt track racing season is winding down, but the lateness of the season has still been a month of firsts at Spoon River Speedway.
Two weeks ago it was Jose Parga in the Monical’s Pizza Pro Late Model Division picking up his first-ever feature win on the smooth, fast, high-banked 3/8-mile oval, and this past Saturday is what another young gun, Mike Chasteen, Jr., earning his first feature win in the Perkins Seed House Modified Division on the speedway at which he started his driving career. For good measure on Chasteen’s big night, Parga went ahead and added another feature win to his resume. And even though Glasford’s Richie Biswell has visited Victory Lane at Spoon many times, his win in the Farmington Locker Pro Modified Feature was his first of the season in that division, and first time in over a month he’d been able to smile for the photos reserved for the winner.
After a week filled with cloudy skies and rain showers, and with the threat of more rain on Saturday, no one knew what kind of show, if any, would happen at Spoon River Speedway Saturday night.
“I was a little worried about the track being rough,” said Promoter and Track Prep ace Brad Denney during the intermission of the program, “I didn’t get to spend nearly as much time on it this week as I usually do…but it looks like it turned out okay.” That was an understatement, to be sure, on a night when two, three and even four-wide racing happened throughout the night on a smooth, multi-groove racing surface.
Springfield area UMP Modified drivers Matt Goulden and Kelly Kovski are good friends off the track, and race each other hard but clean on the track. Saturday night at Spoon River Speedway, the two buddies put on a show at the front of the field on the high-banked 3/8-mile oval, on a night when the track was the fastest it’s been all season. Almost too fast, if you ask Goulden.
“I love this track, it’s always so smooth and fast,” he said in Husqvarna Victory Lane after holding off Kovski in the thrilling 20-lap feature. “But tonight, it was almost too fast,” he added with a chuckle. “I had to just focus on not making mistakes, because I could see both of them [Allen Weisser, who finished third and challenged for the lead mid-race, and Kovski] and I knew the only way they would be able to pass me was if I made a mistake.”
Both Kovski and Weisser pressured Goulden in hopes of that mistake that never came, and even though Kovski was able to nose in front in turns 1 and 2 a couple of times in the late stages of the race, Goulden was able to hold him at bay and officially lead every lap to claim the first of the four Poker Chip Lottery races.
Allen Weisser was happy with his win in the Perkins Seed House UMP Modified Feature Saturday night at Spoon River Speedway, but he might have been happier with second place. The young star figured to finish second as he watched his dad Butch Weisser pull away to a big lead late in the 20-lap main event, and he would have been cool with that.
“I’d really have rather seen him win it, his car was so good, and I would have been happy with second” said Allen in the Husqvarna Victory Lane after he inherited the lead with only one lap to go when Butch Weisser’s car suddenly slowed on the back stretch of the 3/8 mile high banked oval and then disappeared over the top of turn 3 to avoid causing a pileup behind him, as mechanical failure in the rear of the machine cost the veteran a victory that was almost certainly his.
Under a bright full moon at Spoon River Speedway, Springfield UMP Modified driver Kelly Kovski got what he’s wanted for a long time, something that Todd Bates has already done a bunch of times, and something Bates did again in the UMP Pro Modified division Saturday night.
Kovski won his first ever main event at the high-banked, 3/8 mile clay oval, blasting around early leaders Allen Weisser and Brian Lynn with a high-side dash and then driving a mistake-free race on that top side, winning the Perkins Seed House Modified Feature in dominating fashion.
“I’ve wanted to win one here for a long time, and I’ve had my chances before, so this feels good!” said an exuberant Kovski in the Husqvarna Victory Lane. “I just want to thank the Denney’s for this track, I love this place, it’s a great place to race.”
Old-school racing made it’s annual visit to Spoon River Speedway Saturday night, in the form of the Quick Draw Specials, a night featuring three segments of racing in each division with inverted starts sending the higher-finishing car in the previous segment to the back of the field for the next segment.
The format is a throwback to the days when the fields were inverted, passing was at a premium, and the fans cheered as drivers charged through the pack. No one did more charging and got more cheering Saturday than Allen “A-Dog” Weisser, the second-generation racer from Peoria, in his #25W UMP Modified.
This Saturday Night June 28th the Quick Draw Races will return at the Spoon. If you like passing this is the race you don't want to miss. There will be no qualifying. Everyone will draw for your starting spot in the first segment. All classes will run three segments with the second and third segments being inverted. The finishing order is determined by how many points you collect in all three segments.
It was the night for the Farmington Locker UMP Pro Modified Division to show off their stuff at Spoon River Speedway Saturday night, and boy, did they, putting on a thrilling show for 30-laps in the Annual Bill Anderson Memorial Race at the 3/8-mile high-banked oval.
The yearly special for the Pro Modified Division, named for the late Bill Anderson, a longtime figure at the Speedway, and father of several racing brothers, including still-active son Mark Anderson, is the biggest race for that division at the Speedway, with increased purse money and a big trophy to the winner.