DECEMBER 21, 2017… Entering their 36th official season, the Light Up The World Beverages USAC Western States Midgets are poised for fifteen races at seven racetracks. Starting March 17th at Bakersfield, the “mighty midgets” will close out the schedule with Ventura’s “78th Running of the Turkey Night Grand Prix” on November 22nd.
Promoted by Scott Schweitzer, Bakersfield Speedway will host three dates on the calendar. The March 17th season opener will be co-sanctioned with the Bay Cities Racing Association (BCRA). The Western States Midgets will return on June 16th and the “November Classic” with the USAC National Midgets on November 17th. Last year, Ronnie Gardner (twice) and Brady Bacon claimed victories at “The West’s Fastest 1/3-Mile High Banked Clay Oval.” Bakersfield Speedway is located at 5001 North Chester Extension in Bakersfield, California and for more information, visit www.bakersfieldspeedway.com or call 661.393.3373.
Located at the El Dorado County Fairgrounds, Placerville Speedway has one race on the schedule. Promoted by Scott Russell and Kami Arnold, the 1/4-mile oval is hosting the Wednesday, March 24th “Placerville Short Track Outlaw Showdown” along with the World of Outlaw Sprint Cars. Last season, Shane Golobic outdueled Ronnie Gardner and Alex Schutte to take the Placerville checkered flags. Placerville Speedway is located at 100 Placerville Drive in Placerville, California and for more details, visit www.placervillespeedway.com or call 530.344.7592.
The Merle Stone Chevrolet Thunderbowl Raceway in Tulare will host the “mighty midgets” on April 14th. Promoted by Steve Faria, the lightning fast 1/3-mile oval will also showcase the USAC/CRA 410 Sprint Cars. The highly anticipated race at the Tulare County Fairgrounds was rained out last year and this will be a “must see” event for race fans in the Central Valley. The Merle Stone Chevrolet Thunderbowl Raceway is located at the corner of Bardsley and K Streets in Tulare, California and for more information, visit www.tularethunderbowl.com or call 559.688.0909.
Santa Maria Raceway will host three nights on the schedule. The USAC Western States Midgets will battle at “The West’s Best Short Track” on April 28th, August 11th’s “Bud Stanfield Memorial,” and October 6th. Last August, Cory Elliott added his name to the winner’s list at the Central Coast 1/3-mile clay oval. As a bonus, the USAC West Coast Sprint Cars will join the card for all three shows in 2018. Santa Maria Raceway is located 1/4-mile north of the 101/166 interchange at 1900 Hutton Road in Nipomo, California and for more information, visit www.santamariaraceway.com or call 805.922.2232.
Located at the Ventura County Fairgrounds, Ventura Raceway has four events on the schedule. Promoted by Jim Naylor, “The Best Little Dirt Track in America” will host the June 30th, September 15th, October 27th, and November 22nd events. Co-sanctioned with the USAC National Midgets, November’s “78th Running of the Turkey Night Grand Prix” will also feature the USAC West Coast Sprint Cars. Last year, Ronnie Gardner, Chad Boat, Carson Macedo, and Christopher Bell won at the seaside 1/5-mile oval. Ventura Raceway is located at 10 West Harbor Boulevard in Ventura, California and for more details, visit www.venturaraceway.com or call 805.648.RACE.
Petaluma Speedway will host the BCRA co-sanctioned “Jack London Hall of Fame Picnic Event” on July 21st. Promoted by Rick Faeth, “The Fastest 3/8-mile Dirt Oval in Northern California” has become a popular stop and Michael Faccinto scored last season’s victory at the Sonoma-Marin Fairgrounds. Petaluma Speedway is located at 100 Fairgrounds Drive in Petaluma, California and for more information, visit www.petaluma-speedway.com or call 707.763.7223.
The scenic Calistoga Speedway will showcase two nights of action, starting on September 1st. Promoted by Tommy Hunt and HMC Promotions, the two-day “11th Annual Louie Vermeil Classic” will also feature the USAC/CRA 410 Sprints, vintage cars, an autograph session, wine tasting, and more. Last year, Tanner Thorson and Rico Abreu earned $10,000 victories at the Napa County Fairgrounds. Calistoga Speedway is located at 1435 North Oak Street in Calistoga, California and for more information, visit www.calistogaspeedway.org, or call 916.773.7225.
The USAC Western Awards Banquet (and Roast) will be held Saturday, January 27th at the Orleans Casino and Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. The hotel will also host a Bowling Tournament the previous night at 8:00pm. Tickets for both the Awards Banquet and Bowling Tournament can be downloaded at www.westcoastsprintcars.com/2017/banquet2017.docx and orders must be received by January 20th. The Orleans Hotel and Casino is located at 4500 West Tropicana Avenue in Las Vegas Nevada. Online room reservations can be made at www.orleanscasino.com/groups for a special block rate (Group Code: A8SAC01) of $50 for Thursday, $117 for Friday, $117 for Saturday, and $50 for Sunday. For more room reservation information, call 800.675.3267.
LIGHT UP THE WORLD BEVERAGES USAC WESTERN STATES MIDGET CHAMPIONS:
1982-*Jeff Heywood, 1983-Sleepy Tripp, 1984-Tommy White, 1985-Sleepy Tripp, 1986-Robby Flock, 1987-Sleepy Tripp, 1988-Sleepy Tripp, 1989-Robby Flock, 1990-Sleepy Tripp, 1991-Sleepy Tripp, 1992-Sleepy Tripp, 1993-Robby Flock, 1994-Johnny Cofer, 1995-Billy Boat, 1996-Jay Drake, 1997-Ricky Shelton, 1998-Rick Hendrix, 1999-Marc DeBeaumont, 2000-Wally Pankratz, 2001-Danny Ebberts, 2002-Robby Flock, 2003-Steve Paden, 2004-Johnny Rodriguez, 2005-Jerome Rodela, 2006-Jerome Rodela, 2007-Johnny Rodriguez, 2008-Nic Faas, 2009-Garrett Hansen, 2010-Alex Schutte, 2011-Cory Kruseman, 2012-Shannon McQueen, 2013-Ronnie Gardner, 2014- Ronnie Gardner, 2015-Ronnie Gardner, 2016-Ronnie Gardner, 2017-Ronnie Gardner.
2017 LIGHT UP THE WORLD BEVERAGES USAC WESTERN STATES MIDGET WINS:
3-Ronnie Gardner, 1-Rico Abreu, 1-Brady Bacon, 1-Christopher Bell, 1-Chad Boat, 1-Cory Elliott, 1-Michael Faccinto, 1-Shane Golobic, 1-Carson Macedo, 1-Alex Schutte, 1-Tanner Thorson.
2018 LIGHT UP THE WORLD BEVERAGES USAC WESTERN STATES MIDGET SCHEDULE
January 26: Orleans Hotel & Casino – Las Vegas, NV (Bowling Tournament / 8pm)
January 27: Orleans Hotel & Casino – Las Vegas, NV (USAC Western Awards Banquet / 12pm)
March 17: *Bakersfield Speedway – Bakersfield, CA
March 21: Placerville Speedway – Placerville, CA (Placerville Short Track Outlaw Showdown)
April 14: Merle Stone Chevrolet Thunderbowl Raceway – Tulare, CA
April 28: Santa Maria Raceway – Santa Maria, CA
June 16: Bakersfield Speedway – Bakersfield, CA
June 30: Ventura Raceway – Ventura, CA
July 21: *Petaluma Speedway – Petaluma, CA (Jack London Hall of Fame Picnic Event)
August 11: Santa Maria Raceway – Santa Maria, CA (Bud Stanfield Memorial)
September 1: Calistoga Speedway – Calistoga, CA (Louie Vermeil Classic)
September 2: Calistoga Speedway – Calistoga, CA (Louie Vermeil Classic)
September 15: Ventura Raceway – Ventura, CA
October 6: Santa Maria Raceway – Santa Maria, CA
October 27: Ventura Raceway – Ventura, CA
November 17: #Bakersfield Speedway – Bakersfield, CA (November Classic)
November 22: #Ventura Raceway – Ventura, CA (Turkey Night Grand Prix)
* = Co-Sanctioned Event with BCRA Midgets.
# = Co-Sanctioned Event with USAC National Midgets.
This schedule is subject to change.
#68 Ronnie Gardner, 5-Time USAC Western States Midget Champion. Photo by MMRacingPhotos.com.