This Saturday night, Lebanon I-44 Speedway presents the third installment of the 2019 racing season, the Roper Classis 110. Just two races are in the books so far, and the racers are itching to get back on the racetrack after several week’s off. The Ozark’s Asphalt Late Model series will be running 110 laps to pay tribute to the Roper Family and the famous No. 10. Dale, Dale Jr., Dean, and Tony Roper have made countless laps around the high-banks and Dean and Tony both went on to make several NASCAR National series starts. The Roper family has done so much for the racing community over the past several decades and what better way to honor them than to have a race with their name on it!
The 4-cylinder Hornet division will be in attendance on Saturday night and, once again, Dustin Atkinson will be starting tailback after his second consecutive win just a few weeks ago. Dustin has competed in two stock car races, ever, and he has won both of them. Will your current point leader complete the hattrick and make it three in a row or will one of the Albright brothers get it done this Saturday night? There are several other drivers in the hornet class looking for their first win of 2019 as well, you can always expect the hornets to put on one of the best races of the night.
The old-school Street Stocks have been putting on a show this year and so far, two drivers have shown their dominance this season. Trevor Icenhower and Matt Pilant have each won a feature and a heat race making them dead even in the points standings. These two drivers have put on a side-by-side battle for the win in both features so far this season. While these two are battling to become the first driver to win two features in 2019, the rest of the field will be trying to add their name to the winners list. Will Ben Johnson be back with a new car after a scary crash took him out of contention at the last race? Or will the always fast Lebanon Johnson clan find Victory Lane this Saturday night?
The ground-pounding modifieds are showing promise of one of the most exciting points battles on the track as well. Ricky Icenhower answered back to Richard Lewis’s win and showed that he is here to win yet another Championship. Michael Juergenson led a lot of laps during the last race and is looking for his first win of 2019. The mechanical gremlins have found Brian Brown so far this season, but once again Brian has repaired his car and will return Saturday night with high hopes of finding Victory Lane. The Modified feature is bound to be a thriller with all of these superstar drivers looking to steal the points lead early on in the season.
The Big 10 Late Model division has grown into one of the biggest classes on the high-banks and with big car count, comes exciting racing as the winner of the last race works his way through the pack. Ken Dickinson and Jimmy Fohn have each won a feature so far this season and are tied in the points. Justin Blake has shown lots of speed and has been a front runner each week looking to power his way into Victory Lane. JC Newell thinks he has found some extra speed in his No. 84 car after running at the Historic Bolivar Speedway last weekend, he is hoping that the extra speed propels him to Victory Lane. Jordan Nisbett has also worked hard on their setup the past few weeks and thinks that they have found what they need to contend for a win. It is shaping up to be a very exciting night of racing.
The Ozark’s Asphalt Late Model Series will cap off the night with a 110-lap feature event in honor of the legendary Roper family. The Roper family has made a large impact on racing in the Ozark’s area and this is our way of saying thanks for everything! So far this season, Tony Jackson Jr. has swept both races and has a healthy points lead over the No. 07 of Terry Limberopolous and the No.14 of Tim Swearengin. Cole Williams is looking to break through this weekend and pick up his first win of 2019 and break Jackson Jr.’s momentum. Corey Dueser is also making the trip down from Indiana and is looking to have a strong run. The last time Dueser ran at I-44 Speedway was in 2015 in the Masters of the Pros 144. Several other drivers are looking to break through this weekend as well including Brennon Willard, Jimmy Vanzandt, and Raymond Merrill. You won’t want to miss this action-packed, long-distance race featuring some of the best Pro Late Model drivers in the country!
The gates will open at 5:00PM this Saturday night and racing will begin at 7:00PM. Take advantage of the great weather, and exciting racing this weekend and head out to Lebanon I-44 Speedway! Prices will be $12 for adults in the grandstands and $15 for adults in tier parking. Children 12&under are always free as well as special pricing for seniors and veterans! For more information find us Facebook or check out our website at i44speedway.net!
By Dylan Bates