FARMER CITY, Ill. – He let one get away from him back in July, and there was no way Nick Hoffman was about to let it happen again Friday night at Farmer City Raceway.
Starting on the pole, Hoffman put a big hurt on the field, leading all 30 laps en route to becoming the fifth different Summit Racing Equipment American Modified Series winner in five contested races this season, besting the nine-time Farmer City winner Mike McKinney and seven-time DIRTcar UMP Modified National points champion Mike Harrison.
Hoffman’s good friend and Elite Chassis customer Mike McKinney beat him in a terrific DIRTcar Summit Racing Equipment Modified Nationals Feature event at Farmer City almost two months ago with a late-race pass for the win. Needless to say, Hoffman made certain that did not happen again this time around.
Hoffman jumped out to the lead early and made light work of any lapped traffic he encountered.
“I was able to maneuver really well and pick and choose my lines,” Hoffman said. “When I did have to come off the bottom and go through the middle, I felt I carried plenty of speed where nobody could get below me if they were on me.”
After a quick caution just under halfway, Hoffman again started pulling away from the field, but McKinney had just taken second and rode less than two seconds back. As they entered slower traffic once again, Hoffman sliced through rapidly, but McKinney began to get held up slightly, allowing for Harrison, Allen Weisser and Will Krup to catch him as they entered the home stretch.
In the end, Hoffman remained unchallenged as he cruised to the $2,500 victory while McKinney was able to hang on in traffic for second. Harrison made a terrific effort on the top side to claim third, and Krup nipped Weisser at the stripe to get fourth.
With the guy who’s won nine times at Farmer City in his non-existent rearview mirror, Hoffman held strong out front, knowing the No. 96 was behind and could strike at any moment if he wasn’t careful.
“There were a couple of times where [signal sticks] showed me that Mike [McKinney] was getting closer, so I stepped my game up and rolled a little bit faster,” Hoffman said.
Heading into the FALS Super Nationals Saturday night at Fairbury Speedway, Hoffman knows it’s going to take another performance like Friday’s for him to beat McKinney and gain those ever-so-important UMP National points before the season wraps-up in the coming weeks.
“[McKinney’s] won nine races here, so he’s the king of this place right now. And Fairbury too, he’ll be really tough, probably the toughest guy to beat,” Hoffman said.
1. 7-Nick Hoffman ; 2. 96M-Mike McKinney ; 3. 24H-Mike Harrison ; 4. K19-Will Krup ; 5. 25W-Allen Weisser ; 6. 77-Ray Bollinger ; 7. 5CS-Curt Spalding ; 8. 3L-Jeff Leka ; 9. 25-Tyler Nicely ; 10. 32P-Bobby Pierce ; 11. 4-Victor Lee ; 12. 45-Kyle Hammer ; 13. 28-Michael Bolyard ; 14. 35-David Stremme ; 15. 99W-Chris Arnold ; 16. 16C-John Clippinger ; 17. 1KS-Keith Smith ; 18. 242-Brandon Bollinger ; 19. 59R-Jacob Rexing ; 20. 81C-Christopher Cole ; 21. 21D-Danny Schwartz ; 22. 43A-Larry Anderson ; 23. 21-Troy Dodson