Be sure to tune in to WGEL every Monday morning for a recap of the action from the Highland Speedway, sponsored by Hy-Tech Transmission & Auto Repair!
For the 22nd year in a row, the Aggressive UMP Summer Nationals rolled into town Saturday night with the biggest show of the year for three exciting classes of racing. The stakes were huge with the Late Models paying $10,250 to win, Modifieds $2,000 to win and ProModifieds $800 to win. 87 cars filled the pits including many well-known national drivers and dedicated local contenders. In a special tribute, Brett’s First Responders Night was celebrated in memory of the late driver Brett Korves.
The Late Model feature saw local driver #10 Daryn Klein (Fairview Heights) jump out to an early big lead, but lapped traffic ended his night with an accident on turns 3 and 4. The “Smooth Operator” #32 Bobby Pierce (Oakwood, IL), the “Squirrel” #3S Brian Shirley (Chatham, IL) and the “Moweaqua Missile” #18 Shannon Babb battled hard for the lead during a long green flag stretch. But multiple time Summer Nationals feature winner the “Highside Hustler” #25 Jason Feger (Bloomington) gave up his usual game and started digging on the low side from all the way back in the 16th position. One by one Feger picked off the race leaders and ran away with the $10,250 victory check and his 20th Series victory. Pierce was second and Babb third in the 40-lap thriller. #52 Matt Bailey (Highland) was the top local finisher in 10th place.
6-Time Champ Mike Harrison (Highland) and his #24H maintained his dominance in Summer Nationals races and ran away with his 51st series win. Harrison started on the front row and sliced his way through lapped traffic for the runaway victory in the 25-lap race. He dedicated his win to his friend Brett Korves, driver of the #25 ProModified who passed away tragically in 2019. #77 Ray Bollinger (Kewanee) and #128 Zach Schantz (Highland) battled it out for the two remaining podium spots and finished second and third. 2019 Highland Speedway Track Champion Tyler Deibert finished 4th.
There was no shortage of tears in Victory Lane for the $800 to win ProModified feature race as Denny Tribout (Millstadt) in the Korves #25 ProModified rode a front row starting position to the emotional win. #5 Owen Steinkoenig (Highland) fought hard for several laps in the 20-lap race but could not overtake Tribout during green flag racing. #58R Ryan Hamilton (Fairview Heights) rounded out the top three. In his Victory Lane speech, Tribout said “when we lost Brett, I got back into racing for one thing, to put this car into victory lane for my dad, Alex, Brock, everybody standing here in front of us.”
Racing resumes at Highland Speedway this Saturday, July 25th with Race #4 of the 2020 racing season. Grandstands open at 5:30pm with races starting at 6:30pm for four classes of racing. More information can be found on the Highland Speedway Facebook page or by going to www.highlandspeedway.com.