Wednesday, 27 November 2019


#11E Cory Elliott #11E Cory Elliott Photo by Lance Jennings


By Lance Jennings

NOVEMBER 26, 2019... After hard fought battles at Placerville and Bakersfield, the USAC Western States Midget championship will be decided at Jim Naylor’s Ventura Raceway. Set for Thursday, November 28th, the “79th Running of the Turkey Night Grand Prix” is one of the most prestigious and longest running motorsports events in the country. The NOS Energy Drink USAC National Midgets will also battle for their crown in a special 98-lap main event and the USAC West Coast and VRA Sprint Cars will join the card. For more information, visit the track’s website at or call 805.648.RACE.


- 2019 APPROVED/LEGAL MUFFLERS: EXTREME: 3515-3030, 3615-3030, 3515-3030-8, 3615-3030-8, BILLY BOAT: FRAC-0375-S, COAST FABRICATION: 300x625x17-2s, 350x625x17-2s, 400x625x17-2s, FLOWMASTER: 13009130, 13509130, 13509135, SCHOENFELD: 14272535, 14272530-78. *Failure to comply with the muffler rule will risk disqualification from the event.



- The weight rule is 1,035 lbs. with driver and the USAC Western States Midget Rule Book can be found online at 

- USAC MEMBERSHIPS can be purchased at the track or online at 

GRAND MARSHALLS: Sleepy Tripp & Gary Zarounian.

PAY PER VIEW: The event is available on pay-per-view and will be live streamed at 

The festivities for the “79th Running of the Turkey Night Grand Prix” will start on Wednesday, November 27th. That night, the USAC West Coast and VRA Sprint Cars will clash in a special non-points event and the USAC National and Western States Midgets will have their practice sessions. On Thursday, the Sprint Cars will return for their non-point “ARP Battle of the Beach” finale along with the complete midget show with time trials, last chance races, and 98-lap main event. There will be a special driver autograph session at intermission.

The Wednesday Pit Gates at the “The Best Little Dirt Track in America” will open at 11:45am, the Driver’s Meeting will be held at 2:45pm, the Spectator Gates open at 3:00pm, and practice starts at 3:15pm. On Thursday, the Pit Gates will open at 11:00am and the other times will be the same.

Since Bob Swanson took the checkered flags at Gilmore Stadium in 1934, the “Turkey Night Grand Prix” (TNGP) has been a “must win” race for drivers from across the country. While other venues like Gardena, Speedway 605, Saugus, Bakersfield, Irwindale, and Perris have showcased the event, it is perhaps best known at the legendary Ascot Park. In 1997, Ventura Raceway hosted it’s first “granddaddy of all midget races” and Billy Boat claimed his third-straight “Thanksgiving Classic.” Last year, Christopher Bell outdueled NASCAR’s Kyle Larson to add his name for the third time to the perpetual “Aggie Trophy” alongside many legends of the sport. A complete win list of the “Turkey Night Grand Prix is at the end of this release.

Since May 24, 1986, 148 USAC Western States Midget events have been held at the Ventura County Fairgrounds. Sleepy Tripp claimed the inaugural victory and leads all drivers with eighteen Ventura wins. When the series last visited the popular oval on October 26th, Northern California’s Chase Johnson earned his first series win. At press time, Johnny Cofer holds the 1-lap qualifying record of 11.675, set on November 18, 1995 and a complete series Ventura win list is at the bottom of this release.

Heading to the “Turkey Night Grand Prix,” Robert Dalby (Anaheim, CA) has a 29-point lead over the competition. To date, the driver of the family owned #4D R-D Spring & Stamping / Lucas Oil Spike has posted three feature wins, one Woodland Auto Display Fast Time Award, four heat race victories, eight top-10 finishes, and 46 feature laps led on the year. Robert will be looking to clinch the title with another win at Ventura Raceway.

Cory Elliott (Bakersfield, CA) is second in the Western States Midget point standings. Racing the family owned #11E Capital E Trucking / Nagel Earthworks Spike, Elliott has two Woodland Auto Display Fast Time Awards, three heat race victories, one Saldana Racing Products Hard Charger Award, eight top-10 finishes, and 30 feature laps led to his credit. The 2015 Rookie of the Year will have his sights on the championship at the Thanksgiving Classic.

David Prickett (Fresno, CA) has climbed to third in the chase for the championship. The pilot of the Neverlift Motorsports’ #15DJ Monster Seal Tire Sealant / Western Performance Spike has two heat race victories, two Saldana Racing Products Hard Charger Awards, and six top-10 finishes on the year. The 2012 Dirt Champion will be looking to add the prestigious race to his resume.

Leading rookie contender Ben Worth (Coalinga, CA) has risen to fourth in the Western point standings. Racing Dean Alexander’s #5G Walker Air Filtration / WFX Spike, Worth has posted one feature win, six top-10 finishes, and 32 feature laps led in the campaign. Ben will have his sights on claiming the 98-lap main event at the Ventura County Fairgrounds. 

C.J. Sarna (Palm Desert, CA) has climbed to fifth in the championship point chase. Driving his #20 Cactus Jack’s Bar & Grill / Final Final Clothing Spike, Sarna has one heat race victory, two Saldana Racing Products Hard Charger Awards, and six top-10 finishes on the year. The 2007 co-rookie of the year will be looking for the feature win at Ventura Raceway. 

While Worth leads the chase for Rookie of the Year honors, Austin Liggett (Tracy, CA), Gage Rucker (Truxton, MO), Troy Morris III (Bakersfield, CA), Mike Leach Jr. (Orange, CA), Anthony Lopiccolo (Yorba Linda), Robert Carson (Concord, CA), Jackson Dukes (Clovis, CA), Beau Lemire (Placerville, CA), and Ricky Lewis (Oxnard, CA) are also in contention.

“Sunshine” Tyler Courtney (Indianapolis, IN) leads the NOS Energy Drink USAC National point chase. Chris Windom, Logan Seavey, “KTJ” Kevin Thomas Jr., Zeb Wise, Tanner Carrick, Jerry Coons Jr., Jason McDougal, Tucker Klassmeyer, and Chad Boat round out the top-10 in points.

Ventura Raceway is located on the Ventura County Fairgrounds at 10 West Harbor Blvd. in Ventura, California. Advance tickets are on sale and for more event information, visit the track’s website at or call 805.648.RACE. 

The USAC Western States Midget Series thanks AMSOIL, Brown & Miller Racing Solutions, Butlerbuilt Professional Seat Systems, Competition Suspension Incorporated, Extreme Mufflers, Five Star Grafix, Hoosier Racing Tire, Loudpedal Productions, Pyrotect Racing Cells, Saldana Racing Products, Ultra Shield Race Products, Wilwood Disc Brakes, and Woodland Auto Display for their support. If you or your company would like to become part of the series, email PR Director Lance Jennings at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

For more information on the series, visit the United States Auto Club (USAC) website at and the social media for USAC Racing. You can also find exclusive content on the USAC Western States Midget Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram pages. 

FloSports has USAC Western States Midget live videos and on demand coverage available for purchase at


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, 2018-Michael Faccinto.

TURKEY NIGHT GRAND PRIX WINNERS: 1934-Bob Swanson; 1935-Ted Sizemore; 1936-Ronney Householder; 1937-Ronney Householder; 1938-Bob Swanson; 1939-Mel Hansen; 1940-Roy Russing; 1941-Roy Russing; 1945-Danny Oakes; 1946-Perry Grimm; 1947-Johnny McDowell; 1948-Bill Vukovich; 1949-Perry Grimm; 1950-Bill Zaring; 1955-Johnnie Parsons; 1956-Edgar Elder; 1957-George Amick; 1958-Joe Garson; 1959-Tony Bettenhausen; 1960-A.J. Foyt; 1961-A.J. Foyt; 1962-Billy Cantrell; 1963-Mel Kenyon; 1964-Parnelli Jones; 1965-Dick Atkins; 1966-Parnelli Jones; 1967-Gary Bettenhausen; 1968-Sam Sessions; 1969-George Benson; 1970-Gary Bettenhausen; 1971-Bill Englehart; 1972-Tony Simon; 1973-Bill Englehart; 1974-Danny McKnight; 1975-Mel Kenyon; 1976-Bubby Jones; 1977-Gary Patterson; 1978-Rick Goudy; 1979-Ron Shuman; 1980-Ron Shuman; 1981-Ron Shuman; 1982-Ron Shuman; 1983-Kevin Olson; 1984-Ron Shuman; 1985-Brent Kaeding; 1986-Warren Mockler; 1987-Ron Shuman; 1988-Chuck Gurney; 1989-Chuck Gurney; 1990-Stan Fox; 1991-Stan Fox; 1992-Ron Shuman; 1993-Ron Shuman; 1994-Jordan Hermansader; 1995-Billy Boat; 1996-Billy Boat; 1997-Billy Boat; 1998-Jay Drake; 1999-Jason Leffler; 2000-Tony Stewart; 2001-Dave Steele; 2002-Michael Lewis; 2003-Dave Steele; 2004-Bobby East; 2005-Jason Leffler; 2006-Billy Wease; 2007-Dave Darland; 2008-Bobby Santos; 2009-Bryan Clauson; 2010-Bryan Clauson; 2011-Caleb Armstrong; 2012-Kyle Larson, 2013-Dave Darland, 2014-Christopher Bell, 2015-Tanner Thorson, 2016-Kyle Larson, 2017-Christopher Bell, 2018-Christopher Bell.

2019 USAC WESTERN STATES MIDGET WINS: 3-Robert Dalby, 2-Kyle Larson, 2-Austin Liggett, 1-Brady Bacon, 1-Maria Cofer, 1-Chase Johnson, 1-Robby Josett, 1-Gio Scelzi, 1-Kevin Thomas Jr., 1-Ben Worth.

2019 USAC WESTERN STATES MIDGET POINT STANDINGS: 1. Robert Dalby-770 , 2. Cory Elliott-741, 3. David Prickett-576, 4. Ben Worth ®-560, 5. C.J. Sarna-543, 6. Shannon McQueen-534, 7. Austin Liggett ®-458, -. Jake Swanson-458, 9. Randi Pankratz-428, 10. Kyle Beilman-382, 11. Marvin Mitchell-370, 12. Dylan Ito-350, 13. Michael Faccinto-317, 14. Cody Swanson-309, --. Gage Rucker ®-309, 16. Tyler Courtney-295, 17. Rico Abreu-293, 18. Kevin Thomas Jr.-277, 19. Logan Seavey-275, --. Zeb Wise-275.

2019 NOS ENERGY DRINK USAC NATIONAL MIDGET POINT STANDINGS: 1. Tyler Courtney-2014, 2. Chris Windom-1818, 3. Logan Seavey-1809, 4. Kevin Thomas Jr.-1755, 5. Zeb Wise-1710, 6. Tanner Carrick-1556, 7. Jerry Coons Jr.-1540, 8. Jason McDougal-1470, 9. Tucker Klaasmeyer-1411, 10. Chad Boat-1255, 11. Andrew Layser ®-1178, 12. Tanner Thorson-1056, 13. Jesse Colwell ®-948, 14. Kersyn Elledge ®-886, 15. Justin Grant-758, 16. Holley Hollan ®-746, 17. Brady Bacon-692, 18. Ethan Mitchell ®-655, 19. Tyler Thomas-631, 20. C.J. Leary ®-624.



April 6: Bakersfield Speedway – Bakersfield, CA (Winner: Ben Worth)

April 20: Merced Speedway – Merced, CA (Winner: Austin Liggett)

April 27: Santa Maria Raceway – Santa Maria, CA (Winner: Austin Liggett)

June 22: Ventura Raceway – Ventura, CA (Winner: Robby Josett)

July 20: Petaluma Speedway – Petaluma, CA (Winner: Maria Cofer)

July 27: Merced Speedway – Merced, CA (Winner: Robert Dalby)

August 10: Santa Maria Raceway – Santa Maria, CA (Winner: Robert Dalby)

September 14: Ventura Raceway – Ventura, CA (Winner: Robert Dalby)

October 26: Ventura Raceway – Ventura, CA (Winner: Chase Johnson)

November 15: *Arizona Speedway – San Tan Valley, AZ (Winner: Kevin Thomas Jr.)

November 16: *Arizona Speedway – San Tan Valley, AZ (Winner: Brady Bacon)

November 19: *Placerville Speedway – Placerville, CA (Winner: Gio Scelzi)

November 20: *Placerville Speedway – Placerville, CA (Winner: Kyle Larson)

November 23: *Bakersfield Speedway – Bakersfield, CA (Winner: Kyle Larson)

November 28: *Ventura Raceway – Ventura, CA (Turkey Night Grand Prix)


* = Co-Sanctioned Event with NOS Energy Drink USAC National Midgets.

This schedule is subject to change.