Brian Hetrick was a young vibrant man from Stronghurst, Illinois who had been involved in sprint car racing for ten years prior to his untimely death. On August 18, 2008 at the University of Iowa Hospital and Clinics Hetrick succumbed to head injuries as a result of a motorcycle accident the night before near Dallas City, Illinois.
Hetrick had earned enough points to win the 2008 points championship at 34 Raceway. Basically, all he had to do was show up and start his car. Due to his death though, the sprint car family of racers at the track joined together and decided they would race the last night, but not for points.
Hetrick was declared the 2008 Sebastian Sandblasting 305 Sprint Car Track Champion in a fitting tribute.
On Friday night, September 22, 2023 at the Lee County Speedway in Donnellson, Iowa, Hetrick was honored by a trophy dash in his memory with teal and checkered ribbons adorned on the sprint cars representing Hetrick’s colors of his famed #35 winged sprinter.
Kevin Hetrick, CEO of Big River Garage Doors, in memory of his brother, provided the dash winner with the trophy. North Carolina native Tim Estenson won the dash with the trophy presented by Kevin’s 12 year old daughter Kaylee in victory lane.
While in victory lane, the Hetrick family presented the Oquawka, Illinois family of Vernon and Vicki Spiker with Hetrick’s 360 sprint car dash winner trophy from 34 Raceway on August 16, 2008. At the time, the two young Spiker sons were enthusiast diehard fans of Hetrick and now are adults who also engage in the sport of racing as a hobby.
The receptiveness of promoter Brian Gaylord along with the compassion of fans and racers was evident throughout the evening. Over $300 in proceeds were raised from the selling of Lee County Hetrick memorial shirts along with many other Hetrick Brothers’ reduced racing apparel.
The sprint car feature event commenced by making their first lap appearance in a missing man formation to honor Hetrick.
Hetrick will always be remembered “A True Track Champion” by racing fans and in the hearts of those who knew him best.
The 25-lap sprint car feature was won by young Indiana native Zane DeVault piloting the #6Z which earned him $3000. DeVault started second and inherited the lead less than a few circuits remaining.
Pole sitter Tim Estenson led early on but flipped later in turn two and that’s when DeVault garnered the lead and finished out with the checkers.
A stout field of 32 sprinters included several out of state heavy hitters.
A jubilant Devault said, “Me and Hunter did a heck of a job tonight….that kid busts his ass all the time and keeps everything rolling. Jeremy Scadden gives me a heck of a car and lets us be able to come out here and do this deal even though he was absent tonight.
Ran for another team earlier this season but split ways. Threw this deal together two weeks ago and trying to run as much as we can.”
DeVault thanked J and J Sprint Car Chassis along with Don Ott Racing Engines who DeVault stated makes killer power. The Ivy Family were also present to help out for the night.
“It’s one of those deals where basically the first guy to get the jump probably win it. Estenson ended up getting the jump on us and we could run him down and race with him. But once we got to lapped traffic it was good racing in traffic.
I think we were a little better than he was, but in clean air we were so fast. It’s such a big track and you can’t keep momentum up that it’s real hard to pass when you get clean air. You’re so close in speed you gotta be able to break their momentum.
Just like a track tonight it was so top dominant for the top couple guys so it was pretty hard to pass,” DeVault concluded.
SPRINT CAR FEATURE RESULTS (top 12):
1. DeVault 2) Jamie Ball, Knoxville (heat winner) 3) Kameron Key, Missouri 4) Cam Martin, Ankeny 5) Paul Nienhiser, Illinois 6) Carson McCarl, Altoona 7) Riley Goodno, Knoxville (heat winner) 8) Ryan Bunton, Illinois 9) Bret Tripplett, Illinois 10) Dustin Selvage, Indianola 11) Colton Fisher, Mediapolis 12) Tyler Lee, Cedar Rapids
LIMITED MODIFIED FEATURE RESULTS (top 12):
1. Damian Kiefer, Missouri (heat winner) 2) Dan Wheeler, Minnesota 3) Donovan Lodge, Illinois 4) A.J. Cline, Missouri 5) Patrick Phillips, Illinois 6) James Hileman, Illinois 7) Brandon Lennox, Missouri 8) Blaise Lewis, Illinois 9) Cole Gillenwater, Keokuk 10) Chris Osborne, Jr., Illinois (heat winner) 11) Tom Bowling, Jr., Burlington 12) Sean Wyett, Danville
MINI HAULER TRUCK RESULTS:
1. Sheldon Brocket, Burlington 2. Jim Ruble, Burlington (heat winner). 3. Tim Wagner, Wapello. 4. Eric Detlefsen, Burlington. 5. Roger Brockett. 6. Don Wood, Wapello. 7. Grady Jones, Illinois. 8. Darin Ronner, Illinois
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 23 RESULTS 34 RACEWAY -
A three-car Hobby Stock feature was the first to run after a lengthy rain delay with track prep.
SPRINT CAR FEATURE (top12):
1. Zane DeVault, Indiana (heat winner) 2) Ryan Bunton, Illinois 3) Tim Estenson, North Dakota (heat winner) 4) Cameron Martin, Ankeny 5) Kelby Watt, Adel 6) Josh Schneiderman, West Burlington (heat winner) 7) Carson McCarl, Altoona 8) Riley Goodno, Knoxville (heat winner) 9) Josh Higday, Des Moines 10) Chris Martin, Ankeny 11) Dustin Selvage, Indianola 12) Dugan Thye, Burlington (B-Feature and heat winner)
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