Sycamore Speedway

By Korey Peterson

The pits were packed and so were the grandstands Saturday night at Sycamore Speedway for the Illinois State Compact Championship.

Over 150 cars were on hand to battle in their respective divisions. Seating was limited as thousands of fans came to witness the biggest race around for four cylinders.

“They come from all over for this one,” said track manager Bill Coulter. “Everyone wants that trophy and championship.”

40 cars started the main event of the evening which was scheduled to go fifty laps. About 12 cars finished on a track filled with debris and broken down cars after the checkered flag.

18-year-old DJ Markham, of Marengo, bested the field of drivers from all over Illinois and picked up $300 for his win. Markham started in the middle of the pack and kept his car intact for the duration.

“I was just driving out there and trying to stay out of the carnage,” Markham said.

It was the first win of the season for Markham, who didn’t secure the top spot until lap 44 when leader Ray Czumaj, of Schaumburg, hit a lapped car which slowed him down. Numerous other cars had taken the lead, but were forced to retire with mechanical issues, mostly flat tires.