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NMRA-TQ MIDGETS 2017 SEASON ROLLS ON

NMRA-TQ MIDGETS 2017 SEASON ROLLS ON
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Two months of the summer racing season for NMRA-TQ midget teams rolled on during June and July as a part of multiple series competition. Two TQ Saturday events each month at two banked, third-mile clay speedways produced two winners. Six-time NMRA champion Chuck West won three in a row at Santa Maria Speedway. His first cousin/car owner West Evans, a three-time NMRA driving champion, won the most recent race at Bakersfield Speedway on July 22. West, from Clovis, is the point leader after winning six of nine features (67%) in a scheduled 14 event season.

Event 6: June 10 at Santa Maria Speedway: The TQ event was the annual Ron Otto Memorial in honor of the late NMRA leader from the 1950s for numerous decades. The early years NMRA car owner also served at various times as NMRA president, secretary/treasurer, board member, and pit steward. His son Tony and widow Gay were unable to attend the event this year.

Eight drivers raced a pair of eight-lap heats and a 20-lap main event. West and rookie Don Mosley won the four-car heat races. West then snagged the feature trophy over rookie Jason Arnold, Evans, Scott Niven, Ace Kale, Paul Sanders and Mosley, the son of Doyle Mosley and nephew of the late Indy Car driver Mike Mosley.

All completed 20 laps. Second starter Arnold led the first ten laps and eighth starter West led the final ten circuits. Chris Thomas, who won the prior main event, dropped out of the first heat on lap 7 and did not start the main.

Event 7: June 24 at Santa Maria: Teams ran one 8-lap heat and a 20-lap feature. Ace Kale won the heat race in his No. 77, one of four TQs he registered with NMRA. West started last and captured his second consecutive main event in the No. 38 Evans Motor-sports Spike/Bob Wirth 750cc Suzuki. Sixth starter Evans, pole starter Arnold, Scott Dobson, A. Kale, and Scott Niven finished second through sixth and all completed 20 laps. Kevin Kale, Ace's son, retired on lap 3.

Event 8: July 8 at Santa Maria: A field of eight TQs again ran two 8-lap heats with West and Dobson the winners. A 25-lap main event went to eighth starter West in his usual No. 38 Evans team ride. It was his sixth victory of 2017 and his second three-race winning streak this season.

Inside row two starter Dobson, Evans, Niven, and Arnold (in Rick Poe's No. 2p Dennis Hart chassis with Honda power), completed all 25 laps. A. Kale and Sanders logged 24 laps. TQ rookie/stock car veteran Donald Brashier ran 23 laps in his first TQ midget ride aboard A. Kale's No. 70 Ellis/Honda. NMRA 2016 rookie of the year Wes Cummings raced the car most recently this season.

Event 9: July 22 at Bakersfield: Eight drivers returned last Saturday to their home track--Bakersfield Speedway, which opened in 1946. They ran a pair of four-car, 8-lap heats captured by teammates West and Evans. Evans also won the 20-lap feature in his No. 36 Spike/Bob Wirth 750cc Suzuki. He paced the final 19 laps after Arnold led lap 1. Evans, an eight-time NMRA car owner champion, started sixth and won his first main event this season. He became the fourth different 2017 feature winner in nine races.

Third through eighth at the finish were: Niven, Arnold, K. Kale, rookie Brashier, A. Kale and Don Mosley. West and the Evans No. 38 TQ are leading the driver and car owner point standings by 53 points. Event ten will be run Saturday, August 5 in a return trip to Bakersfield Speedway. Fifteen drivers and 14 TQs have earned 2017 points to date.

POINT STANDINGS (as of August 1):

   Drivers                                    Car Owners

1 Chuck West       575      1 No. 38 Evans Motor-sports  602

2 West Evans       522       2 No. 36 Evans Motor-sports 549

3 Scott Niven         486      3 No. 59 Steve Parke            513

4 Ace Kale            419      4 No. 77 Ace Kale                446

5 Kevin Kale          368      5 No. 07 Ace Kale                392

6 Scott Dobson      337      6 No. 18 Scott Dobson         355

7 Jason Arnold ®    304     7 No. 2p Rick Poe                322

8 Chris Thomas      255     8 No. 70 Ace Kale                298

9 Don Mosley ®      237    9 No. 40 Ed Thomas             270

10 Wes Cummings 186    10 No. 87 Doyle Mosley        255