September 21, 2017
Seth and Sutton Sharp
When the Busch Grand National Series left Dover Downs International Speedway in September of 1986, Jack Ingram had his sights set on yet another Series title. Despite a disappointing 15th place finish, Ingram still held a 250 point lead in the standings with only five races remaining on the schedule.
Before Ingram arrived at the Martinsville Speedway, he took part in the North Carolina State Late Model Championship race at New Asheville Speedway. Ingram dominated the start of the event, leading the first 141 laps before being passed for the lead by Ronnie Pressley. Ingram and Pressley made contact the following lap, costing Ingram a chance at the victory and infuriating Ingram in the process.
Ingram turned his car around on the track and rammed his car head on into Pressley’s car, sending Pressley to the hospital. Ingram was escorted from his car by police officers, but before they could reach their destination a fight broke out between crew members.
When all the dust settled, Ingram faced three counts of assault on a law-enforcement officer and one count of disorderly conduct. Although the incident did not take place in a Busch Series event, Ingram was suspended for the following two races for conduct detrimental to auto racing. He was also handed a hefty fine.
Championship contender Larry Pearson took advantage of Ingram’s issues, finishing second at Martinsville and winning at Orange County. Ingram returned from his two-race suspension at Charlotte, sitting third in points, 75 points behind new leader Brett Bodine. Pearson sat second, only seven points back of Bodine.
Over the season’s final three races, Ingram finished 15th, 31st and 8th, as Pearson edged Bodine by seven points to win his first career Series title.