Starting from the sixth position, Mike McKinney said after the race, “I didn’t think I’d be able to do it.” And then, a door opened right in front of him.
McKinney, the 30-year-old UMP Modified ace from Plainfield, IL, had worked his way to third with 10 laps remaining in Friday’s DIRTcar Summit Racing Equipment Modified Nationals Feature at Farmer City Raceway. The two drivers ahead of him – race leader Blake Brown and points leader Tyler Nicely – were in an intense battle for the lead when McKinney caught them in traffic and looked to the inside to make a move for the top spot.
As Brown and Nicely both pushed up the track through Turns 1-2, McKinney used the grip on the bottom lane and slipped past both of them out of Turn 4 to take the lead.
“The bottom was just the only lane open,” McKinney said. “There was a lot of grip down there. It was a little choppy, but I was able to make it work.”
McKinney sped away in traffic, but faced one final challenge in a green-white-checkered finish after the caution was thrown as McKinney was coming for the white flag.
“I really didn’t feel nearly as good,” McKinney said. “I don’t know if I had my tire kinda seal-up there a little bit, but I was really struggling those last few laps. I just knew that if I could keep running my line and hit my marks, I felt like we’d be pretty good.”
Despite his concerns, McKinney was able to hold on for his 18th career Summit Modified victory and second of his career in Summit Modified competition at Farmer City.
Week 4 of Summit Modified racing continues Saturday, July 8 with a visit to Highland Speedway in Highland, IL. Get a ticket at the gate or stream all the action live on DIRTVision.
Feature (25 Laps): 1. 96M-Mike McKinney; 2. 37L-Michael Ledford; 3. 777-Trevor Neville; 4. 99B-Blake Brown; 5. 66-Cole Falloway; 6. 5CS-Curt Spalding; 7. 89-Austin Friedman; 8. 13-Charlie Mefford; 9. 24Z-Zeke McKenzie; 10. 5-Steven Brooks; 11. 50-Tyler Weiss; 12. 24T-Trevor Ringle; 13. 77-Ray Bollinger; 14. 130-Chase Allen; 15. 99T-Tyler Loughmiller; 16. 10K-Kelly Kovski; 17. 150-Collin Alexander; 18. 25-Tyler Nicely; 19. 94-Tom Pasek; 20. 0-Travis Kohler; 21. 54-Zachary Hawk; 22. 25W-Allen Weisser; 23. 14-Caden McWhorter; 24. 36-Kenny Wallace