By Jay Hardin
Track Enterprises Staff
DuQuoin, IL-(September 3, 2019)-The 2019 DuQuoin State Fair is now in the history books and the traditional Labor Day auto racing weekend reached some historical milestones. Here is a brief look back at the accomplishments over the weekend on the Magic Mile.
ARCA Federated-Southern Illinois 100
Federated Auto Parts returned as the title sponsor for the 67th running of the Southern Illinois 100, making them the longest running title sponsor in the history of any of the motorsports events on the Magic Mile. This year’s race was the 67th held during the DuQuoin State Fair since stock cars appeared at DuQuoin in 1950.
Christian Eckes goes into the record books as the youngest winner ever of the Southern Illinois 100, at 18 years, 9 months and 21 days besting the record set by 19 year old Parker Kligerman in 2009. Ken Schrader became the oldest pole winner at DuQuoin (and in ARCA) by capturing the front slot at age 64, having celebrated his birthday May 29.
Eckes also smashed the 36 year old ARCA 100-mile race record previously held by Dean Roper. Eckes time of 1:05:08 shaved over a minute off Roper’s 1983 ARCA standard. Eckes was helped by just two short cautions for debris and a fast race track, turning laps in the low 34 second bracket most of the evening.
Wayne Peterson set a record as well, becoming the oldest driver ever to start a race on the DuQuoin mile. At age 81 Wayne is nearly three years older than James Hylton was when Hylton last started the Southern Illinois 100.
Multi car teams have been few and far between on the DuQuoin mile, though there have been efforts by Bill Stroppe, Bill Trainor, Jack Bowsher, Jack Housby and Larry Clement. In looking at past history none have ever finished 1-2-3 in the stock car race and it may be that the Venturini team came closest Saturday night with a 1-2-4 run at DuQuoin. Teammates have finished 1-2 only three times in the history of stock car racing at DuQuoin. Nelson and Paul Goldsmith ran 1-2 in 1963 and the next year Ray Nichels teammates Joe Leonard and Len Sutton ran 1-2, with A.J. Foyt finishing 5 in another Nichels machine. Frank Kimmel and Tony Stewart ran 1-2 in 2001 and appear to be the last teammates to run first and second before Eckes and Logan Seavey occupied the top 2 slots Saturday night.
Schrader and veteran Brad Smith now crack the top 10 in all-time starts at DuQuoin, each with 18.
Eckes 91 laps led move him into the top 25 in all-time laps led at DuQuoin and the 91 in one race are among the most for one driver during a 100-mile event, but shy of the record 100 shared by Jay Frank, Paul Goldsmith, Norm Nelson and Don White.
USAC Ted Horn 100
The 71st Ted Horn 100 goes into the history books as one of the most competitive events with multiple grooves that saw three wide racing.
Jacob Wilson, long associated with pavement racing, ironically gets his first Silver Crown win on the dirt. The 2018 Ted Horn 100 pole winner started 6th and led 59 miles to become the 13th driver to claim his first Silver Crown series win on the Magic Mile, the last being Shane Cockrum in 2014. Wilson also became the 88th different driver to lead a championship car race at DuQuoin.
Wilson’s victory marked the 5th consecutive win for Maxim chassis on the Magic Mile, the 36th win for a car with a Chevrolet power plant and the 20th win for a Hoosier shod dirt car. Interestingly the victory was the fourth different car owner in the last four races, Fred Gormly, Tony Depalma, Gene Nolen and now the Wilson brothers.
2019 is the 6th time the winner has started from position 6 and the 64th time the winner has started in the top 10. It is also the first time that a car with a number starting in “0” has won at DuQuoin.
The pole run by Tyler Courtney was the 5th time a Maxim chassis sat in the top slot in the last 6 races. It marked the first pole for a Chrysler powered car since Tyler Walker’s pole run in 2005. Courtney’s 3rd place finish meant that no pole winner has gone onto victory since Shane Cottle in 2007. The pole time of 30.627 is the 6th time on the last 10 years the pole run has been under the 31 second barrier.
Sunday night was the first time in 14 years the last car to qualify captured the front slot.
The 2019 edition was the 24th time the Horn 100 has seen a red flag since 1973. This year Mike Haggenbottom had the misfortune of getting upside down off turn 2. Before the year 200 the race was frequently red flagged to repair the old boiler plate guard rail after accidents.
Wilson and Brady Bacon move into the top 50 in all-time laps led in championship competition at DuQuoin.
Brian Tyler and Jerry Coons Jr. are now tied with Chuck Gurney for 9th in all-time starts for championship races at DuQuoin with 19.
UMP Oldani Memorial
Ken Schrader’s dominance of the Bill Oldani Memorial for UMP Modified cars continued Sunday night. Schrader started from the second position, led all fifteen laps and set a new 15 mile track record for the mods of just over 111 miles an hour in the process.
At just over 64 years of age Schrader extends his record as the oldest main event winner in DuQuoin history. He has led the last 70 miles in modified competition on the Magic Mile and his 7 Oldani wins are by far the most of any driver. It also extends his record to 11 main event wins at DuQuoin, ironically his first win came 27 years after his 1979 DuQuoin debut.
Jeff Parks of Marion extended his starts in the Oldani Memorial to 22, with Joe Giesler at 21.