Lucas Oil Speedway, Wheatland, MO Pressure of tight points chase suits Lucas Oil Speedway repeat champ Fennewald

Discussion in 'Missouri Race Tracks' started by Race Results, Dec 4, 2018.

  1. Race Results

    Race Results Administrator Staff Member



    Johnny Fennewald said it's too early to tell if he will make a run at a third straight Lucas Oil Speedway track championship in 2019, in the Warsaw Auto Marine & RV ULMA Late Model division.

    But if the Appleton City racer does chase a three-peat, odds are things will go right down to the final night of the season. Maybe even down to the last lap - just like it has the last two years.

    That won't bother Fennewald a bit. He enjoys a win-or-bust scenario, such as championship night in 2018 when he emerged from a three-way points battle by winning the feature and edging out Aaron Marrant and Kaeden Cornell for his second straight title.

    Fennewald began the action two points behind 2016 champion Marrant and two ahead of Cornell. Fennewald started from the pole and set a blistering pace with Cornell chasing him from outside the front row.

    Marrant started fifth and moved into third by lap three. The trio broke away from the field and spent the final half of the race weaving in and out of lapped traffic.

    It was a near-identical scenario as 2017 when Fennewald finished second in the final-night feature, one position ahead of Marrant to edge out his rival.

    "It was a lot of fun," Fennewald said of the pressure-charged situations the last two seasons. "The way I look at it, you win the race and you win the points. Usually, if you just plan on winning races, it'll all take care of itself. It was like that in 2017, too.

    "For sure it's a lot of fun when you have some good, quality cars you can race against like we did."

    After an opening-night hiccup in 2018, when Fennewald failed to finish the feature, he made a quick adjustment to a new Rocket XR1 race car. He came back to win in week two, the first of five main-event wins in 11 Lucas Oil Speedway features.

    "We try to get fast every week and try to do something new all the time, just to get better," Fennewald said. "I'm kind of getting back to where I was before I took a couple of years off there and didn't race."

    Faced with a busy work schedule and a growing family, Fennewald stepped away from racing for a couple of years before returning in mid-2016. While he's split time between the Late Model and Modified over the years, most of his focus last season was on the Late Model.

    "When we backed out from racing for a couple of seasons, we just got busy and didn't have time to do it," Fennewald said. "We're still too busy to do it ... but we just like to do it any way."

    Basically a one-man band when it comes to preparing the race car, Fennewald gets race-night help in the pits from his four children, including three teen-agers. Sponsors include Tightline Whiskers UV, Fennewald Construction and Powell's True Value.

    What's ahead in 2019? Fennewald said he's not ready to commit to another points run.

    "It's kind of wait and see until all the rules come out, then we'll see what everything looks like and go off that," Fennewald said.

    The Lucas Oil Speedway season begins March 30 with an open Test and Tune and the Weekly Racing Series opener is set for April 6.

    Season passes for the 2019 season are available now and those who had them in 2018 can renew at a $25 discount through the end of the year. Contact Admissions Director Nichole McMillan at (417) 282-5984 or email her at to purchase a pass or get more information.

    Gift cards also are available, in any dollar amount. They can be redeemed in any department at the speedway or used toward tickets for any event during 2019.

    Danny Lorton
    Lucas Oil Speedway General Manager
    Office: (417) 282-5984

    # # #

    2018 ULMA Late Model Track Champion Johnny Fennewald video.


    Complete Lucas Oil Speedway event information, archived race recaps, previews and driver features, along with ticket information and 2019 schedule can be found by visiting

    Lucas Oil Speedway is located at Highways 83 and 54 in Wheatland, Missouri. A campground with shower and bathroom facilities is also available. With its entrance located just outside the pit gate this sprawling scenic camping facility will continue to enhance the racing experience at the Diamond of Dirt Tracks.

    Click for more information and detailed directions to the speedway or call the Track Hotline at (417) 282-5984.

    In addition, fans can get social with Lucas Oil Speedway by following @LucasSpeedway on Twitter, clicking "Like" at and on

    About Lucas Oil Speedway
    Lucas Oil Speedway is considered by fans, drivers and industry insiders to be one of the top five racing facilities in the nation. Located in Wheatland, Missouri, approximately an hour from Springfield, Missouri, and just an hour and a half from the Kansas City metro area, the "Diamond of Dirt Tracks" lives up to its title.

    Twenty-One VIP Luxury Suites, HD Jumbo-Tron Screen, Stadium Style Musco Sports Lighting, a Bose Sound System, Go-Kart Slick Track, The Diamond Bar, Track Treasures Gift Shop, the best track food in the country and paved pits are a few of the spectacular amenities setting the Diamond of Dirt apart. This year marks the ninth season for the Liquid Quarter Mile Drag Racing Lake, "Lake Lucas." New for 2017 was all-purpose built Off Road facility featuring the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series as well as a host of other regional events.

    Lucas Oil Speedway's dirt oval track plays host to some of the largest and most-popular events in the Midwest with national and regional touring series appearing frequently including: The Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series, POWRi Midget National Series, Lucas Oil Pro-Pulling League, United States Modified Touring Series, ASCS Sprint Cars and the Lucas Oil MLRA.

    In addition to the special events, the Lucas Oil Speedway Big Adventure RV Weekly Racing Series features the Warsaw Auto Marine & RV ULMA Late Models, Pitts Homes USRA Modifieds, Big O Tires Street Stocks and the Ozark Golf Cars USRA B-Mods.

    2019 Official Lucas Oil Speedway Marketing Partners

Share This Page