Davenport native Davey Ray to run Cedar Rapids & Knoxville; Ageless Mel Kenyon to join him at Knoxville. KNOXVILLE, IOWA (MAY 2, 2002) - Davenport native Davey Ray returns to his roots over the next month as he competes in midget car racing...
Davenport native Davey Ray to run Cedar Rapids & Knoxville; Ageless Mel Kenyon to join him at Knoxville.
KNOXVILLE, IOWA (MAY 2, 2002) - Davenport native Davey Ray returns to his roots over the next month as he competes in midget car racing events in Cedar Rapids and Knoxville. The 23-year-old will compete this Friday, May 3, in the United States Auto Club (USAC) sanctioned "Hawkeye Open-Wheel Classic" on the asphalt Hawkeye Downs Speedway in Cedar Rapids. He will return to his native Iowa on Saturday, June 1, to race on the legendary Marion County Fairgrounds dirt oval in the inaugural "Pepsi/Mt. Dew Knoxville Midget Championship". The Knoxville event, the track's first midget car race since before Davey Ray was born, will be tri-sanctioned by the Badger Midget Auto Racing Association (BMARA), Midwest Auto Racing Association (MARA), and the North American Midget Auto Racing Series (NAMARS).
Ray, the son of 1977 BMARA and '81 MARA champion Dave Ray, will pilot his father's Gaerte-powered Beast at Cedar Rapids this Friday. He will wheel Harlan Kittleson's Stanton/Mopar-powered Beast at Knoxville, where he will compete against fellow Davenport native Mel Kenyon. Mel is a 7-time USAC national champion (1964, '67, '68, '74, '77, '81, '85) and a three-time NAMARS point champion (1995, '96, '97). The member of the National Midget Auto Racing Hall of Fame will compete in his own Gaerte- powered Stealth midget car.
The National Sprint Car Hall of Fame & Museum will be represented at Friday's "Hawkeye Open-Wheel Classic" by 1968 Northwest Midget Racing Association (NMRA) champion Ralph Blackett. Ralph won a 1972 NMRA- sanctioned midget car event at the historic Knoxville Raceway, site of the non-profit sprint car museum. The museum will also have it's modern Avenger/Gaerte sprint car on display at Hawkeye Downs in Cedar Rapids.
For more information on this Friday's "Hawkeye Open-Wheel Classic", which features both the Stoops Freightliner/USAC Sprint Car Series and the USAC National Midget Car Series, individuals are urged to call Hawkeye Downs Speedway at 319-365-8656. "Pepsi/Mt. Dew Knoxville Midget Championship" race information can be viewed at www.knoxvilleraceway.com, while the museum's phone number is 641-842-6176.