June (By Tyson Graves)
In late 2019 the Mars Racing Series was sold to Tony Izzo Jr. Tony bought the series from then owner Chris Tilley. Tony had big ambitions and had a nice schedule put together for the 2020 race season until the COVID-19 pandemic hit us in March. This led to the cancellation and postponement of many series events.
Finally, in June the series was able to kick things off at the Davenport Speedway. A small but strong field of cars showed up on a Thursday night for the $5,000 to win season opener. The feature event was full of comers and goers. Jonathan Brauns started on the pole but faded as the race went on. Brian Shirley started back in the eleventh position and was the hard charger and finished third. Regional standout Allen Weisser came home in the runner up spot.
It was the Frankfort, IL driver Frank Heckenast Jr who started back in the ninth spot that was able to charge up and take the Mars Racing Series presented by RIP It Energy Fuel win. Frank led the final fourteen laps. Frank finished second on night two of the season at Lee County. Heckenast Jr. was the points leader on the Mars tour for most of the year.
Frank Heckenast Jr winning at Davenport was a top moment of 2020 as the new Mars Racing Series era began.
Photo: Mike Ruefer