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Results | Event Guide | Story & Pictures by Rocky Ragusa

The Fairbury Speedway and MARS Racing Series saw 123 Modified drivers sign in for night one of the inaugural “Illinois Dirt Shootout". Popejoy Inc. and HOTROD Septic Treatment presented the Memorial Day special with participants from 12 states and Canada.

Qualifying, heat races, last chance showdowns, and feature races used a point system emphasizing “every-lap-matters.” The format rewarded points based on a driver's finishing position in each category. Quick Car Racing Products and MultiFire High Performance Spark Plug Wires fast time honors went to Mike McKinney (Group A - 13.664 seconds), Nick Allen (Group B - 13.885 seconds), Landen Miller (Group C - 13.925 seconds), and Austin Friedman (Group D - 13.823 seconds).

There were twelve 10-lap heat races with the top two finishers in each race advancing to one of the night’s two features. McKinney, Michael Long, Brian Skaggs, Michael Ledford, Frank Marshall, Brad DeYoung, Miller, Kyle Hammer, Mike Chasteen Jr., Friedman, Tyler Nicely, and Josh Harris won their respective heat races. Eight 12-lap Last Chance Showdowns saw Charlie Mefford, Austen Becerra, Curt Spalding, Allen Weisser, Ed Roley, Kyle Strickler, Levi Kissinger, and Mike Harrison lead the way with the top three finishers in each race moving into the feature.

In the first 25-lap, $1,500-to-win feature, Long took the lead at the start as sixth starter Ledford moved into second by lap two. Long began to distance himself from his competitors before the yellow flag came out on the 13th lap. McKinney, in third position at the caution, got by Ledford with 11 laps to go. McKinney cut into Long’s lead as the white flag was displayed. McKinney dove under Long in turn three, but the Fowler native prevailed for his seventh win of the year and second at FALS. “The car was good, and the track was great,” Long said. “Getting this win on the first night helps the rest of the weekend.” McKinney settled for second as Ledford took third. Becerra, who started 14th, finished in fourth and Marshall was fifth. Cole Falloway, DeYoung, Mefford, Dean Hoffman, and Spalding completed the top ten.

Starting on the outside front row of the second race, Nicely led as sixth starter Friedman quickly moved into second by lap two. Harrison, who started in the 16th position, threaded his way through the field and was in ninth place by lap 10. With ten laps to go, the caution came out with the top five at that point being Nicely, Friedman, Harrison, Hammer, and Zeke McKenzie. As Harrison entered turn one, he dove under Friedman and took second with eight laps to go. Harrison rapidly cut into Nicely’s lead, and with seven laps remaining, performed a slide job entering turn three to take the top position. Caution fell on the track with four laps to go and Harrison pulled away for his first win of the year. “The crew and I have been tuning on the car and finally got it to my liking,” said Harrison. “They got me comfortable in it, and here we got the end results.” Nicely settled for second, and McKenzie overtook Friedman on the final lap for third. Josh Harris was fifth followed by Chasteen and Mason Duncan. 19th starter Derek Losh was eighth, with Miller and Lyndon Whitfill rounding out the top ten.



Deece Schwartz

Deece Schwartz

Michael Ledford

Michael Ledford

Jose Parga

Jose Parga

Braiden Keller

Braiden Keller

Tommy Duncan

Tommy Duncan

Results | Points | Story & Pictures by Rocky Ragusa

The B-Modified class made its first-ever appearance at the Fairbury Speedway on Saturday night. A-Modifieds, Pro Late Models, Stock Cars, and Sportsman were also on the card. Crossing the line first were Deece Schwartz (B-Modified), Michael Ledford (A-Modified), Jose Parga (Pro Late Model), Braiden Keller (Stock Car), and Tommy Duncan (Sportsman).

schwartz bmdMatthew Edler and Deece Schwartz raced for the lead early in the 25-lap B-Modified feature before Schwartz took command. Brandon Bollinger moved into second on the eighth lap and cut into Schwartz’s lead. Bollinger tried the top and bottom to move past Schwartz, but the fourth-generation driver and two-time Pro Modified National Champion was able to stand his ground for the win and take the $1,000. “Mark Busch builds a heck of a race car,” said Schwartz. “It’s been unbelievably fast all year long. I have always wanted to be able to come here and race. Glad we were able to get the win.” Bollinger settled for second, followed by Brayden Doyle, Edler, Dan Wheeler, AJ Cline, Jerremy Sebens, Ryan Kohler, Chris Osborne Jr., and Blake Monroe. 38 cars went under the clock. Schwartz's time of 14.585 seconds led the first group of qualifiers. The second group was paced by Edler’s time of 14.608 seconds. Schwartz, Doyle, Edler, and Osborne won their respective heat races. Lucas Boulton and Curtis Caldwell captured the two B-mains.

ledford mdMichigan invader Curt Spalding got the jump on pole-sitter Bradley Jameson at the start of the 25-lap A-Modified race. Jameson and Mike Chasteen Jr. had a race for second until the caution fell on lap eight. On the restart, Chasteen slowed and fell back in the field as defending track champion Michael Ledford began to make his presence felt. Running his patented high side, Ledford overtook Jameson and went to work on Spalding. With eight laps left in the race, Ledford got past Spalding, and that was all she wrote. The winner of the previous night at the Lincoln Speedway commented in victory lane, “What a track. Bottom, middle, and top, the track was really good tonight.” Austin Friedman overtook Spalding in the closing laps to take second, and Jameson finished in fourth, followed by Mason Duncan and Caden McWhorter. Landen Miller started in the 20th spot and took seventh. Clint Young, Deece Schwartz, and Jeff Curl completed the top ten. With 38 cars in attendance, qualifying was broken into two groups. Duncan’s time of 14.066 seconds led the first group, and a time of 13.835 seconds by Friedman led the second group. Jameson, Curl, Spalding, and Chasteen took heat race wins. Alan Stipp and Mike Brooks were the B-main winners.

parga plm

Starting on the pole position, four-time DIRTcar National Champion Jose Parga took the lead at the start of the 20-lap Pro Late Model feature and checked out on the field earning the $1,000 payday. “Every time we come to Fairbury, they give us a good race track,” said Parga. “I wish we were here more. It’s great to come back home, race in front of the hometown people, and get us a win.” Ryan Miller took second, and Blaise Baker finished third. Chris Dick, Brandon Sweitzer, Matt Hammond, Ben Kirchner, Amber Crouch, Mike Lofgren, and Logan Nesselrodt rounded out the top ten. Baker led the 13 cars in time trials with a lap of 13.732 seconds. Parga and Miller won their respective heat races.

keller scBraiden Keller led all 15 laps in a dominating performance by the young chauffeur in the Stock Car feature. For Keller, it was his second FALS win of the young season. “It has been a really good year so far,” Keller said. “I can’t wait to keep the momentum going.” Joe Brown, Cody Clubb, Kyle Anderson, Nick Seplak, Dave Dulceak, Brandon Tracy, Justin Crowell, Brice Slavens, and Nathan Lynch followed. Anderson led the 12 cars on hand in qualifying with a time of 15.301 seconds. Brown and Keller won their respective heat races.

duncan spIt was a repeat of Friday’s “Richard Craven Memorial” at Kankakee County Speedway for the Sportsman class. Tommy Duncan took off like a rocket and led flag-to-flag to take the 15-lap race, his second of the season. “It looked like it was pretty slick on the bottom,” Duncan said. “I really needed something to lean on tonight. I just wanted to get a good start and set my own pace.” After an early race for second, Steve Mattingly cut into Duncan’s lead but ran out of time and settled for second. Tyler Roth, Josh Hetherington, Aaron Reid, Doug Carls, and Makinzi Semmens completed the rundown. A time of 14.619 seconds gave Duncan quick time honors, and he completed the sweep by winning the lone heat race.


Devin Moran

Devin Moran

Michael Long

Michael Long

Long Scores $2,000 Modified Win

Results | Points | Story & Pictures by Rocky Ragusa

The second race of the season at Fairbury Speedway featured the "Spring Shootout" presented by Titan Industries. The Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series made its return alongside the DIRTcar Modifieds. In qualifying for the 60-lap, $30,000-to-win Lucas Oil Late Model race, 47 drivers made qualifying attempts on the ¼-mile dirt oval. Mike Marlar led the first group with a time of 13.403 seconds, while Devin Moran led the second group with a lap of 13.609 seconds. Marlar, Jonathan Davenport, Moran, and Brandon Sheppard won their respective heat races. Two B-mains saw Gordy Gundaker and Kyle Bronson take the wins.

moran thorntonFrom the outside of the front row, Moran took the lead at the start with Marlar in second. Starting in the sixth spot, Jason Feger was on the move, running his patented top side. Caution fell on lap 14 as Brian Shirley slowed on the track. When the field went back to green, Feger got past Sheppard for third. A multi-car pileup on the frontstretch brought out the yellow on lap 15. Feger moved into second on the restart and overtook Moran for the lead on lap 19. Feger opened a ten-car-length lead over Moran, Marlar, and Sheppard. After a battle for fifth with Davenport, Ricky Thornton Jr. began to flex his muscle. Moran began to cut into Feger’s lead and, running the bottom, reclaimed the top spot on lap 45. Thornton followed suit and overtook Feger. Thornton stayed glued to Moran and made a final attempt for the lead on the last lap but came up 0.760 seconds behind Moran. The 2018 Prairie Dirt Classic winner spoke after the race. “I was trying to be patient and save my tires because Feger was running at the top. When I saw there were 25 laps to go, I knew it was time to go. Feger didn’t move down and thank goodness, because it worked out for us.” Thornton finished second, followed by Sheppard, Feger, Davenport, Marlar, and Nick Hoffman. 24th starter Tim McCreadie took eighth, with Mike Harrison and Cody Overton completing the top ten.

longHometown driver Lyndon Whitfill led the first group of Modified qualifiers, while Mike McKinney led the second group, as 45 drivers went under the clock for the $2,000-to-win Modified race. Whitfill, Michael Long, McKinney, and Blake Brown took heat race wins. Trevor Ringle and Jeff Curl won the two B-mains. Whitfill led the field to the green with Long, McKinney, Steven Brooks, and Josh Harris racing single file. The first caution came out on lap 15 as Levi Kissinger slowed on the track. With the track cleared, Whitfill led as Long went to the top of the speedway. As the pair entered turn three, Long threw a slide job on Whitfill and took the lead at the start/finish line. Long started to pull away as Whitfill held on to second over McKinney. The caution came out with three laps to go for Zeke McKenzie. Another caution fell on the restart for Marshall Call. Debris brought another caution. The restart had Long leading, as Whitfill and McKinney exchanged slide jobs. The defending MARS Series champion picked up his fourth win of the young season. “The year is starting off good,” spoke Long. “I was waiting for the top to blow off. The caution came out and we were able to get rolling. The top was packed enough for me to get rolling.” McKinney got by Whitfill for second on the last lap, with Harris, Brown, Mike Chasteen Jr., Brooks, Mike Harrison, Ray Bollinger, and Cole Falloway rounding out the top ten.

Moran Returns to Lucas Oil Victory Lane with $30,000 Win at Fairbury

Story by LOLMDS

Devin Moran regained the lead from Jason Feger on lap 45 and went on to win the FALS Spring Shootout - Presented by Titan Industries on Saturday night at Fairbury Speedway. Moran collected $30,000 for his second Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series win of the season.

Moran, who won the track’s signature event, the Prairie Dirt Classic, in 2018, held off Ricky Thornton Jr., the defending PDC champion, for the win. Brandon Sheppard took third followed by Feger and Jonathan Davenport.

Moran started on the outside of the front row and took the lead at the start of the 60-lap race. Mike Marlar grabbed second behind Moran at the start as he trailed last year’s runner-up in the championship points for the first 16 circuits until Feger, who started sixth, took over second from Marlar on lap 17.

Feger was not done yet, and after reaching second, took just two more laps to get the lead, passing Moran on lap 19. Feger, who entered the race with three career Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series victories, used the outside line to try to extend his lead over Moran and Sheppard, who had climbed to third.

The trio of Feger, Moran, and Sheppard ran that way until Moran was able to regain the point from Feger on lap 45. Thornton then started to get going after running outside the top five for several laps. The current championship point leader, who was looking for his fourth series win in a row, moved into the second spot as Feger fell to fourth behind Sheppard.

Moran stayed glued to the bottom of the track as the race went on with a long stretch of green flag racing to the end. Thornton made a last-ditch effort on the final circuit but came up 0.760 seconds short of Moran at the finish.

In Lucas Oil Victory Lane, for the tenth time in his career, Moran, who currently sits third in the championship standings, was relieved to get back to Victory Lane at Fairbury for the first time in six years.

“I was trying to be patient and save my tires a little because he was running the top,” said Moran after seeing Feger pass him for the lead. “I saw there was 25 to go, and I knew it was time to go; I knew I needed to get by him. Feger didn’t move down, and thank goodness, because it worked out for us. It’s hard to lead here when you see the 20RT behind you on the scoreboard, but fortunately for me, I was able to stay on the bottom; I wasn’t going to move from there.”

Thornton, who has six Big River Steel Podium finishes in 2024, all wins, had his first second-place finish of the season. “If I could have won my heat race, I might have had a better shot at the win. I didn’t fire off as good as I needed to, and it kind of took me a while to get going. We just slowly and methodically worked our way forward. There for a while I thought Feger was going to win the thing; he took off like a rocket there. Congrats to Devin; his stuff has been really good.”

Sheppard, who rounded out the Big River Steel Podium in third, tried valiantly in the last 10 laps to get by Moran and Thornton using the top line but couldn’t get close enough. “They were all single file around the bottom, and I figured I could give it a whirl once at least. I think I could have been more aggressive at the beginning of the race. I had a pretty good balanced car all night long.”


Garrett Alberson

Garrett Alberson

Austin Friedman

Austin Friedman

Braiden Keller

Braiden Keller

Tommy Duncan

Tommy Duncan

Jerremy Sebens

Jerremy Sebens

Results | Points | Story & Pictures by Rocky Ragusa

The Fairbury Speedway opened its 2024 racing season on Saturday with a FALS Cup weekly program presented by Varsitee Screenprinting and Aftershock Decals and Design. Action on the ¼ mile semi-banked dirt track saw Garrett Alberson (Late Model), Austin Friedman (Modified), Braiden Keller (Stock Car), Tommy Duncan (Sportsman), and Jerremy Sebens (Hobby Mod) claim feature wins.

alberson fegerWith rain canceling the weekend’s Lucas Oil Late Model Series events, Garrett Alberson made the trek to Illinois to tune up for next weekend’s Lucas Oil Late Model doubleheader at Farmer City and Fairbury. Starting in the sixth position, Alberson took the lead on the 10th lap. Race leader Jason Feger had built a ½ straightaway lead with Alberson, Jake Little, Myles Moos, and McKay Wenger trailing. As Feger approached slower traffic, Alberson dove under Feger exiting turn two. Alberson took the lead and opened a straightaway lead before the caution light came on with seven laps to go. On the restart, Moos turned up the wick and got past Little. Moos overtook Feger for second on the white flag, but the laps ran out as Alberson, winner at Farmer City the previous night, took the win. “I have been wanting to win at Fairbury for a long time,” said the Las Cruces, New Mexico racer. “We went to a harder tire on the right rear. It took off on the start and I knew we would be alright.” Moos took second, Feger settled for third, followed by Little, Wenger, Daniel Adam, Donny Walden, 15th starter Tommy Sheppard Jr., Rich Bell, and Kye Blight.

friedmanAustin Friedman took the lead at the start of the 20-lap Modified race and went on to take the win. Taking the lead from Mike McKinney, Friedman turned back a bid for the lead from McKinney in the closing laps, but the young second-generation driver proved to be too stout in taking the checkers. “I have never swept a weekend before,” an excited Friedman explained. “I knew the car would be fast. I got lucky to get out front and not look back.” McKinney finished in second, with Ray Bollinger, Michael Ledford, and Zeke McKenzie completing the first five. The rest of the top ten saw Caden McWhorter, 17th starter Lyndon Whitfill, Austin Self, Bradley Jameson, and Steven Brooks.

brown kellerBraiden Keller, running the Fairbury cushion, got by Joe Brown with three laps remaining and took the win in the 15-lap Stock Car feature. “I want to thank the track staff for getting the track ready after that rain,” Keller said. “I love racing here. This is our third win in a row.” Brown, Kyle Anderson, Cody Clubb, Brandon Tracy, Derrick Weiand, Brice Slavens, 13th starter Dave Dulceak, Jace Gall, and Jeff Czemske completed the top ten.

mattingly duncanIn the 15-lap Sportsman race, Tyler Roth paced the field for the first two laps before Steven Mattingly moved to the lead on the third lap. Tommy Duncan, who started at the rear of the field, made his presence felt after a caution on lap 11. Racing on the topside of the track, Duncan moved past Roth and closed in on Mattingly. With the checkered flag in sight, Duncan dove under Mattingly entering turn three and edged Mattingly at the stripe to win the race by a car length. Roth finished in third, with Josh Hetherington, Robert Saltzman, Doug Carls, and Makinzi Semmens following.

sebensRacing ended with a 12-lap Hobby-Modified feature. Jerremy Sebens fended off the challenge from Brain Deavers to pick up his first win at Fairbury in the Hobby-Modified class. Deavers settled for second followed by Lucas Boulton, Reid Gall, Jason Brandt, 14th starter Erin Boesdorfer, Jake Bachtold, Joel Funk, Scott Brown, and Colton Grace.


dodGET TICKETS HERE

The Fairbury Speedway is excited to announce the lineup for the 3rd Annual Dancin’ on the Dirt event, which will be held Saturday, August 10, 2024, at the Speedway in Fairbury, Illinois.

This year's headlining artist is Grammy-nominated multi-platinum rising superstar country music artist Cole Swindell. In the last several years, he has raked in over 1 billion streams, had over 10 number 1s, and won multiple awards. Avery Anna will be opening the show. She is an artist whom Amazon Music, Apple Music, Pandora, Spotify, and YouTube named an Artist to Watch. Avery’s debut EP Mood Swings, a seven-song introduction contributing to her nearly 350 million global streams, features the viral hit “Narcissist.”

The concert, premium parking, and camping tickets are on sale now. Concert tickets range from $48 - $63 with two sections available.


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