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Smith, Allen, Sullivan, Duncan, Tippit Take FALS Cup Wins on Fair Night

Eric Smith

Eric Smith

Josh Allen

Josh Allen

Tanner Sullivan

Tanner Sullivan

Tommy Duncan

Tommy Duncan

Chris Tippit

Chris Tippit

Results | Story & Pictures by Rocky Ragusa

A FALS Cup weekly program presented by TKS Concrete and Knapp Kitchens took place on Saturday night as part of the 145th Annual Fairbury Fair. All the hardware and accolades went to Eric Smith (Late Model), Josh Allen (Modified), Tanner Sullivan (Stock Car), Tommy Duncan (Sportsman), and Chris Tippit.

smith lmTonica’s Scott Schmitt in his new Sniper Chassis turned a lap of 12.988 seconds for fast time over 20 other drivers. Jeffrey Ledford, Eric Smith, and Mike Spatola won their respective heat races. Ledford and Smith lined up on the front row for the start of the 30-lap, $2,500 to win race. Smith moved to the lead as the green flag waved, but a yellow flag was displayed as Ledford slowed on the track with mechanical issues. The restart saw Spatola and Derek Chandler throw every move possible to overtake Smith for the lead, but the cagey veteran stood his ground. Kevin Weaver soon made it a four-way battle for first place, but Spatola slowed in turn two for a caution flag, and his race night came to an end. After a caution fell with eight laps to go, Rusty Griffaw was able to overtake Weaver for second. The laps ran out for the “Festus Flash” as Smith, who ended a six-year hiatus, returned to victory lane. “My crew kept working on the car trying to get it better on the cushion,” said Smith, a two-time Fairbury track champion. “I don’t know if they were faster than me, but I was able to hold them off.” Griffaw, an infrequent guest to FALS, turned in an outstanding race to finish second. Weaver, Chandler, and Torin Mettille rounded out the top five. Rich Bell, 15th starter Mike Provenzano, Kyle Hammer, Jeff Curl, and Glen Thompson completed the top ten.

allen md19 Modified drivers looked to take a FALS Cup trophy and the $1,500 first place prize. Points leader Mike McKinney posted a lap of 14.316 seconds for quick time. Michael Ledford and Josh Allen won their respective heat races. Allen, a regular at the Spoon River Speedway, made the decision to head to Fairbury after rain washed out their program. Allen was able to lead all 25 laps of the feature, but it didn’t come easy. Ledford and McKinney took turns as both drivers tried to knock Allen off the front position. McKinney jumped the cushion and fell back several positions in the late stages of the race. Ledford and Nick Seplak were able to capitalize and race each other for second, as Allen had checked out on the competition. “I have never really been good here,” said Allen on his first career Fairbury win. “We were able to get off on the right start. I saw Ledford and McKinney on the cushion and I knew that is what it would take to hold them off. I’m usually not that good on the cushion here, but tonight we did alright.” Ledford, who trails McKinney by three points in the race for the track championship, finished in second. Seplak continues to impress with a solid third place run. The remainder of the top ten went to Trevor Neville, McKinney, Bob Pohlman Jr., Brent Weaver, Austin Friedman, Alan Stipp, and Mike Mosier.

sullivan scTanner Sullivan clocked in at 15.873 seconds in qualifying to grab Stock Car quick time honors. Sullivan and Megan Erwin were victorious in the heat races. Sullivan jumped out to a commanding lead in the 15-lap feature event. Never threatened for the lead, Sullivan was able to cruise to his second straight win. “This was the best the car has run all year,” Sullivan said. “Anywhere I put the car, it would work.” Erwin finished in the runner-up position, followed by Cody Clubb, Terry Reed, Andy Zahnd, Michael Schomas, Pete Odell, Josh Hetherington, Scott Schoener, and Adam Williams.

duncan spA time of 15.153 seconds gave Landen Miller fast time in the CR Towing Sportsman division. With only seven cars, one heat race was held, and Miller came out ahead. Looking to wrap up his third straight track title, Tommy Duncan took the lead on the start of the 15-lap feature. Miller was able to hang tough, but as the race went on, Duncan pulled away to take his sixth win of the season. “We didn’t change anything on the car,” Duncan spoke. “We just stayed with the setup we had and kept our speed up.” Miller, Lyndon Whitfill, Victor Strong, Makinzi Semmens, Dan Flessner, and Anthony Craven completed the finish.

tippit hmComing out of retirement, Scott Williams took fast time honors with a lap of 16.169 seconds in the Hobby Mod class. Chris Tippit and Wes Ricketts were heat race winners. Tippit continued his winning ways by leading from green to checkers in taking his fourth consecutive feature win. Williams finished in second, with Luke Gebhardt, Brian Deavers, Bryce Cunningham, Jordan Walker, Payton Semmens, Jake Green, Steven Kalb, and Jason Vandermeir completing the top ten.


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