By Robert Haugh
Though finishing the race with a steering issues and running on three cylinders, Bakersfield’s Shannon “Lightning” McQueen was pleased, yet equally disappointed in her Top five run at her hometown track, the 1/3-mile Bakersfield Speedway on September 21 in USAC-Western States Midget action.
Starting fifth in the feature, McQueen developed two issues around Lap 5, a steering rod issue, as well as a broken spark plug wire, running the duration of the 30-lap feature on the very fast, rough and tacky race track on three cylinders. “The steering rod issue made the car difficult to drive,” stated McQueen.
“We both had great cars,” said McQueen, “considering all of the issues I had, I will take a 5th place.
McQueen claimed second in her Heat from fourth and was second fastest in qualifying, noting that she left a few tenths on the track with a tight race car – “Hard to control with both wheels in the air,” laughed McQueen.
McQueen’s teammate, 22-year-old Oklahoma young gun Trey Marcham was contending for the feature win aboard the McQueen Racing #37 Spike/Esslinger by Duane McQueen. Marcham was fighting with the lead pack during the 30-lap feature, and claimed the top spot on two occasions, though cautions reverted back to the last completed lap. Racing hard and pushing the car’s limits, Marcham jumped the cushion late in the race and fell back to fourth, giving McQueen racing a pair of Top five runs.
Marcham, a race winner earlier this year at Petaluma, showed he’s learning the Midgets well, improving immensely in qualifying, scoring the third fastest time and claiming third in his Heat race.
“I was really disappointed, we had great cars that were fast and would have liked to have contended for the win. However, we will take two top fives and ride the momentum to Ventura this weekend,” added McQueen.
Thus far in 2013, McQueen has three fast time awards and eight top-10 finishes and sits fourth in the USAC-Western States Midget overall and Dirt standings, while Marcham claimed a feature win earlier this season at Petaluma Speedway.
McQueen became the first woman to win a BCRA Midget championship in 2011 when she claimed the BCRA Dirt Midget crown, then claimed the 2012 USAC-Western States Midget championship, amassing four Heat race wins, nine Top 5 runs, three fast time awards and 13 Top 10s in 2012. McQueen also holds five track records at the 99 Dirt Track in Stockton, Calistoga Speedway, Petaluma Speedway, Silver Dollar Speedway and Orange Show Speedway.
McQueen is also the first female owner to boast a win with a female driver when Oklahoma’s Michelle Decker won a USAC Western States Midget Feature in April 2012 at McQueen’s home track of Bakersfield Speedway at the helm of one of McQueen’s potent Spike/Esslinger entries.
McQueen Racing would like to thank all of our wonderful sponsors: Lucas Oil Products, Simpson Race Products, Eibach Springs, DMI, Rod End Supply, K&N Filters, Advanced Racing Suspensions, MPD, Ruth Engineering, Jet-Hot Performance Coatings, Butler Built Seating Systems, Schoenfeld Headers, American Fabrication, West Evans Motorsports, Western Open Wheel Racing News and Esslinger Racing Engines by Duane McQueen.
McQueen Racing has dedicated the entire 2013 season to Kenny Speck, a McQueen Racing team member who lost his life earlier this year.
Visit www.shannonmcqueen.com for more information on McQueen Racing.
Marcham, a senior Engineering student at Oklahoma University, with experience in Micro Sprints, Ford Focus Midgets, 360 Non-Wing Sprint Cars and asphalt Late Models, has shown amazing poise and talent in limited Midget starts in the McQueen Racing entry earlier this year. Marcham has been seen passing drivers with thousands more laps and experience than he in a Midget. Marcham has amassed six Championships at I-44 Riverside Speedway in Newcastle, Oklahoma, as well as having claimed both the A-Class and Non-wing A-Mains at the Inaugural Donnie Ray Crawford Memorial/Race4Life in Tulsa in 2012. Marcham has compiled several wins and podium finishes thus far in 2013.
Select Coatings, RD Marcham Energy, Inc., Simpson Racing Products, Pinnacle Energy Services, Best Western Tulsa Airport, Metals Supermarket Oklahoma City, J & B Digital Graphics and Mud-X support Marcham.
Visit http://marchamracing.com/ for more information on Trey Marcham.