(Special to Lyndal Scranton)
Missouri’s Lucas Oil Speedway celebrated the 2019 season on Saturday night, November 2 with its annual Championship Banquet and Awards at Camden on the Lake Resort.
Division champions from the four Big Adventure RV Weekly Racing Series classes honored were Robbie Reed of Mexico (Pitts Homes USRA Modifieds), Kris Jackson of Lebanon (Ozark Golf Cars USRA B-Mods), Appleton City’s Johnny Fennewald (Warsaw Auto Marine & RV ULMA Late Models) and Toby Ott of Wheatland (O’Reilly Auto Parts Street Stocks).
Three special awards also were announced, including veteran announcer Kevin Fletcher as the recipient of the third annual Forrest Lucas Lifetime Achievement Award for contributions to the sport on and off the track. He joins previous winners Rex Merritt (2017) and Jim Ruble (2018).
“This is the biggest thing I’ve ever received from announcing,” Fletcher said. “It means a lot to me.”
Fletcher began announcing races at Lucas Oil Speedway a year after Forrest Lucas bought the old Wheatland Raceway and opened the modern facility in 2006. The Springfield native has announced at several dirt tracks in Missouri and the four-state area for a little more than 30 years, starting at the Airport Speedway in Springfield.
Included was an assignment to do a NASCAR Truck Series race at Kansas Speedway. He also was the voice of the Midwest Late Model Racing Association (MLRA) for several years. In addition, Fletcher also called some drag races, motorcycle races and truck and tractor pulls.
Fletcher is a member of the Ozarks Area Racers Foundation Hall of Fame as a Pioneer and also a past president of the organization. He even drove race cars himself for a couple of years before starting his announcing career.
Other award winners included Robbie Reed for “Best Appearing Race Car” as selected by track photographer Kenny Shaw and speedway staff. For the third straight year, ULMA Late Model driver Kaeden Cornell of Willard was named “Most Popular Driver” after online fan voting.
Fennewald captured his third-straight ULMA Late Model track championship, while Jackson earned his fourth Lucas Oil Speedway B-Mod crown. Ott captured his second Street Stocks championship and Reed his first USRA Mod track title.