The Derby Icons official waved the red flag and the drivers of the compact cars heat quickly paused their smashing and whacking.
That’s when Bumper Boy leapt over one of the cement containment blocks, ran out into the middle of the dirt arena and snatched the fallen 100+ pound bumper.
With one fell swoop, he wrapped his arms around the bumper and walked it out of the arena, all to the cheers of the nearly packed stands at the Ogle County Fair on Saturday.
“I started in the demolition derbies when I was 18,” said Bumper Boy, also known as Kyle Gardner, of Mt. Morris. “I just started helping out and starting carrying bumpers and they gave me the name.
“Now I travel to other states to work at their demolition derbies,” Gardner said. “I really enjoy it.”
Gardner was just one of many who seemed to enjoy Saturday nights events that included a total of 25 cars.
Jon Bouton, of Stillman Valley, turned a once elegant 1976 Chevy Caprice station wagon into a demo beast in about two weeks.
“We worked on it off and on for about two weeks,” he said after finishing in the top 5 in the Bone Stock Feature. “It was fun to run. It broke something and we were done.”