DARLAND & LAKATOS WIN; LEFFLER RETURNS FOR "TURKEY NIGHT" DeBEAUMONT BRINGS "WESTERN" MCI TITLE TO IRWINDALE WISE, EDENHOLM WILL SETTLE MCI WORLDCOM TQ BATTLE THURSDAY Dave Darland of Kokomo, Ind. and Josh Lakatos of Pasadena, ...
DARLAND & LAKATOS WIN; LEFFLER RETURNS FOR "TURKEY NIGHT" DeBEAUMONT BRINGS "WESTERN" MCI TITLE TO IRWINDALE WISE, EDENHOLM WILL SETTLE MCI WORLDCOM TQ BATTLE THURSDAY
Dave Darland of Kokomo, Ind. and Josh Lakatos of Pasadena, Calif. captured Saturday night's USAC feature races at the Bakersfield (Calif.) Speedway. This Thursday's spotlight at Irwindale (Calif.) Speedway, though, might shift to drivers Jason Leffler, Marc DeBeaumont, Josh Wise and Greg Edenholm, although NASCAR stars Tony Stewart and Kenny Irwin might have a differing opinion. All of the above share the headlines in the final week of 1999 USAC racing as the MCI WorldCom National, Western at TQ Midget Car Series prepare for the 59th Home Depot "Turkey Night Grand Prix," scheduled this Thursday night at the Irwindale Speedway. Practice starts at 3 pm and a 100-lap Midget Car is set on the 1/2-mile paved oval, following the 20-lap TQ Midget Car finale on the 1/3-mile paved oval. Darland posted the fastest qualifying time, then won Saturday night's 50-lap Midget Car race at Bakersfield in the Ford/Wynn's/Beast/PRI Pink Ford, leading the final 25 laps around the 1/3-mile dirt oval. Jay Drake finished second ahead of Michael Lewis, Travis Welpott and Marc DeBeaumont. DeBeaumont's finish enabled him to warp up the 1999 MCI WorldCom Western Midget championship. Lakatos passed lady driver Randi Pankratz on the white-flag lap and won the 20-lap TQ Midget Car race at Bakersfield over fast qualifier Pankratz, Gene Godepski, West Evans and Kevin Wybenga. Josh Wise finished 17th in the TQ feature but leads Greg Edenholm, who was ninth in the 20-lapper, by just three points going into Thursday's series finale! Jason Leffler, who finished fourth in Saturday's ARCA Stock Car race at Atlanta, Ga., brings the 1999 USAC MCI WorldCom Midget Car championship to Irwindale Thursday. He has won the last two Midget Car features at Irwindale, in October and November, but he'll face a tough challenge Thursday from teammates Darland and Tony Stewart and from Kenny Irwin, who plans to drive his dad's Predator in the 100-lap classic.
MCI WORLDCOM USAC NATIONAL MIDGET CAR STANDINGS
1. Jason Leffler 498 6. Tracy Hines 248 2. Ryan Newman 391 7. Michael Lewis 235 3. Jerry Coons, Jr.369 8. Brian Gerster 202 4. Jay Drake 263 9. Clay Klepper 201 5. Dave Darland 258 10. A.J. Fike 201
MCI WORLDCOM WESTERN MIDGET CAR STANDINGS
1. Marc DeBeaumont 546 6. Jason Leffler 292 2. Shane Scully 485 7. Steve Paden 283 3. Bobby Boone 474 8. Clay Klepper 235 4. Alex Harris 397 9. Jay Drake 211 5. Wally Pankratz 342 10. Rick Hendrix 202
MCI WORLDCOM TQ MIDGET CAR STANDINGS
1. Josh Wise 384 6. Gene Godepski 271 2. Greg Edenholm 381 7. Todd Hunsaker 205 3. Randi Pankratz 340 8. Jim Styer 179 4. Walt Johnson 315 9. Steve Lambert 163 5. West Evans 281 10. Ron Wade 158