The races scheduled for tonight have been cancelled due to rain. A rescheduled date for the DIRTcar Spring Nationals Street Stock Special will be announced soon. Join us next Saturday for the #FALS Frenzy paying $10,000 to win the MARS/ALMS Late Model feature. The Modifieds will race for $1,000 to win, while the Sportsman and Street Stock features will pay $400 to win.
Reserved seats for the four major events of the season in the new northside bleachers are on sale now. You can reserve your seat for only $5.00 per event. You will buy the general admission portion of your ticket at the gate the day of the event. The four major events are: May 7th FALS Frenzy, June 25th UMP Summer Nationals, July 29th & 30th Prairie Dirt Classic (your seat will be good for both nights), and the September 3rd Casey's Modified Nationals. -- Fairbury Speedway Tickets
by Darlene Miller
Three 2015 championship drivers began the defense of their titles by winning the first race of the season at Fairbury American Legion Speedway on Saturday night. Many caution flags and restarts were needed during the night as drivers tried to get the kinks out of their cars and other drivers took to the ¼-mile track for the first time.
Late Model veteran driver Kevin Weaver of Gibson City took off where he ended by bringing home the victory by six car lengths. Weaver led the group to the green flag and despite lap traffic weaved his way around and only faced a slight challenge from Scott Schmitt with four laps to go. But Schmitt’s challenge was to no avail, as Weaver held the low side tight for the win. “The car started out good and then got really great,” said Weaver as he hauled in his 63rd win at FALS. Finishing in the top 10 were Schmitt, Mike Spatola, Derek Chandler, McKay Wenger, Joe Harlan, Jay Morris, Kyle Hammer, Scott Bull, and Charlie Olson. Heat winners were Weaver and Schmitt. Weaver had fast time of 12.772 seconds.
In the Modified division, Jay Ledford of Pontiac had a tougher title defense race. Ledford and his son Jeffrey (on the pole) started the race at the front of the field. It took Lance Dehm five laps to catch and pass the duo for the lead. Lap traffic came in to play with 10 circuits to go. Dehm was fine at first, but with five to go, a couple of cars got together in turn four and Dehm was caught up in the mess with nowhere to go and his strong night was over. Jay Ledford took the lead and then held off a hard charging Vince Cooper for the win. “It’s a hard way to win (talking about Dehm’s wreck). I dedicate this race to a friend of mine, Ron Bohm who passed away recently. This is for Ronnie,” said an emotional Ledford.
As the season approaches, mild weather and above average temperatures have allowed fair board members and crews the ability to continue construction on a number of large capital improvements throughout the facility. The new all aluminum bleachers are going up fast (as pictured) with installation due to be finished by late March. Bathrooms are coming along nicely, as plans changed from the original release in January with a complete new building housing the top-of-the-line restroom facility which will be located on the backside of the backstretch bleachers. Along with construction efforts around the grounds, track crews have had a number of days working the track dirt in preparation for the season to start. Additional projects in the works are the addition of approximately 350 grandstand seats in the pit area. Crews have reworked the pit stand around corners three and four to allow for additional seating in the pit area. Efforts should allow drivers, crews, and fans a chance to see better from the pit area.
Along with the excitement for the upcoming season, here are some updated news and notes from the winter:
- FALS has scheduled an additional practice day set for Saturday, April 9th from 12-3. Pit passes will be $15.00 with grandstand admission free.
- Lap sponsors are available for the DIRTcar Spring Nationals Street Stock Special in Memory of Earl J. Hubert. Drivers will be awarded lap money for leading each lap of the 43-lap feature. All the information on sponsoring laps for this event can be found at www.hubertmemorialrace.webs.com.
- All the payouts for the upcoming season have been updated and posted in the “driver info/payouts” section of the website.
- The driver registration form has been updated and posted on the website under the “driver info/forms” section. We are asking any driver planning on running FALS this year to print and fill out this form and bring it with you to save time in the registration line. There is no charge for registering your car for the season at FALS.
- Transponders and raceceivers will again be required for all on track participation in 2016. FALS runs the red AMB transponders with the MyLaps program. Drivers, crews, and fans will have the opportunity to monitor all the lap times and scoring on Race Monitor each night. Transponder rental is $5.00 per night.
- All classes will qualify on regular nights in 2016 pending any weather or time restraints. Late Models and Modifieds will qualify two laps with two cars per session. Sportsman and Street Stocks will qualify two laps with 3-4 cars per session. FALS weekly format will be the same as last year to start the season.
- Jim Cornelison will be coming back to the Prairie Dirt Classic again this year to sing the national anthem. Interested parties wishing to donate for Jim’s return and the opportunity for the private meet and greet can contact Chris Matich at 815-830-9731. All extra proceeds will once again go to a great veteran’s charity.
Late Model Tire Rules
- May 7th FALS Frenzy MARS/ALMS: Hoosier LM 20 or Hoosier LM 40 ONLY on any corner!!
- June 25th UMP Summer Nationals: Hoosier LM 20-30-40 allowed on any corner
- July 29th & 30th World of Outlaws Prairie Dirt Classic: Hoosier LM 20-30-40 allowed on any corner
- ALL other nights will be FALS tire rule: Hoosier LM 30 or Hoosier LM 40 on Right Rear ONLY!! Hoosier LM 20-30-40 allowed on other 3 corners.
Modified Tire Rules
- Hoosier A40, A40s, H40 allowed until June 30th on any corner
- Starting July 1st: Hoosier A40s only with a RR Hoosier H40 option
- No grooving allowed on any tire!
Street Stock Tire Rule
- Hoosier A40, A40s, H40 allowed on any corner in 2016
- No grooving allowed on any tire!
Updated rules for all classes have been updated on the website under the "driver info/rules" section. UMP will be updating the Late Model and Street Stock rules as soon as possible. No major changes have been announced in those divisions.
Street Stock Bodies
- With a diverse crop of Street Stocks throughout the Midwest, FALS will be implementing a grace period for aluminum bodies and cockpits on Street Stocks. Drivers running at the speedway will be allowed to run aluminum bodies for a period of time which must be approved by the Race Director. Following the tech inspected grace period, drivers must conform to the UMP & FALS body and cockpits rules or lose the opportunity to, but not limited to, earn track points throughout the year.
Once you walk into the Fairbury Fairgrounds, it doesn’t take long to see the strong history and tradition of the facility. From the legends and stars that have raced around the track since 1922, to the Nashville country stars that filled the grandstands at the annual fair, a piece of history flies over the fairgrounds every time you enter the gates. This year the Fairbury American Legion Speedway will entertain dirt track racing for its 71st season of racing along with the 140th edition of the annual Fairbury Fair, which is one of Illinois’ longest standing fairs in the state.
On behalf of the entire Fair Board, American Legion Post 54, and everyone involved with the Fairbury Speedway and Fairbury Fair, we are excited to announce major renovation plans throughout the facility beginning late winter and finishing up before the May 7th FALS Frenzy $10,000 to win Late Model Special. Renovation costs will exceed well over a quarter of a million dollars, which will include a new state-of-the-art restroom facility on the front stretch, a new constructed addition and complete remodel of the south side restroom facility, and a complete new set of aluminum stadium bleachers constructed just to the east side of the main covered grandstands. In addition to the new restrooms and bleachers, speedway and fair officials will continue upgrading minor projects throughout the facility.
Construction will start soon on the new north side restroom facility where the existing bathrooms were located before. This new facility will house twenty-four new stalls for men and women, four new showers, and complete infant changing stations. The entire facility will have all new vanity and toilet equipment, along with full handicap accessibility. In addition to the entire new building on the front stretch, a newly built addition and remodel will also take place on the south side backstretch restrooms. Twelve additional stalls, new infant changing stations, along with all new vanity and toilet equipment will complete the makeover for the speedway’s restrooms.
In a way for the speedway officials to accommodate the increasing demand for seating during major special events throughout the race season, along with all new safety fall proof features, a new all-aluminum stadium set of bleachers will be built to the east side of the front stretch grandstands. Design and installation of these bleachers will allow fans to watch from a premium seat which will start three foot higher than the bottom seat before and run five rows higher which will accommodate an additional 350-400 premium seats. Along with the additional seating, all the seats which used to be tough to see at the bottom of the set will become a viewable line of sight for the entire track. The new bleachers will have twelve handicap accessible spots along with two entrances and a full handicap ramp for convenience. The new bleachers will allow speedway officials to have the option for additional reserved seating for our major events. More information on all the reserved seating can be found by clicking the “tickets” link on the website.
With anticipation and excitement to get started on the new renovations, Fairbury Speedway and fair officials would like to thank the Bank of Pontiac for their continuing support for allowing these capital improvements to become a reality. We are also very excited to have their continued support as the title sponsorship for the 27th Annual Prairie Dirt Classic. This year’s World of Outlaws Prairie Dirt Classic, presented by the Bank of Pontiac, will pay a record $27,000 to win on the weekend of July 29th & 30th. The crown jewel that has received national honors for “race of the year” the past three seasons will have an added excitement for the newly renovated projects.
We hope all our fans, drivers, and customers see the commitment we are continuing to pursue and look forward to an incredible season. All the speedway information including the 2016 race schedule can be found on our website. Also, don’t forget to check out the Fairbury Fair website at www.fairburyfair.com for all the events leading up to the 140th edition on the week of August 17th-21st.