Thursday, 21 July 2016


Petaluma winner Alex Schutte Petaluma winner Alex Schutte Chuck Fry Photo


Powering past Ronnie Gardner on lap seventeen, Alex Schutte (Redding, California) claimed Saturday’s USAC Western States Midget feature at Petaluma Speedway. Co-sanctioned with the Bay Cities Racing Association, the $1,000 “Jack London Hall of Fame Night” victory was Schutte’s first win of the campaign. Gardner, Shannon McQueen, Michael Faccinto, and Greg Bragg rounded out the top-five drivers.

Starting from the pole position, Ronnie Gardner dominated the early laps at the Sonoma-Marin Fairgrounds. Looking for his fifth win, Gardner’s progress was stalled by slower traffic and Schutte took advantage. Slipping by Gardner for the top spot, the 2010 Champion managed to shake free from the point leader. Gardner gave chase, but Schutte sailed to his fourth career USAC Western States triumph.

Racing the Schutte/McElwee owned #28 Zito Vault Aero / Aircraft Electrical Components Spike, Alex Schutte qualified twelfth out of twenty-four racers. Finishing second to Frankie Guerrini in his heat race, Alex also earned the night’s Keizer Aluminum Wheels / Rod End Supply “Hard Charger / Best Passing Job” honors with a twelfth place run to victory. In limited starts, Schutte left Petaluma ranked sixteenth in points with two top-10 finishes.

Ronnie Gardner (Corona, California) led the first sixteen laps, but had to settle for second in the USAC-BCRA main event. Driving the Six8 Motorsports’ #68 Baldozier Racing / Esslinger Engineering Stewart, Gardner was fourth quick in time trials and won the night’s Extreme Mufflers Heat Race #1. The three-time champion enters the schedule break with a 40-point advantage on the strength of four feature wins, two Woodland Auto Display Fast Time Awards, six heat race victories, six top-10 finishes, and 98 feature laps led.

Shannon McQueen (Bakersfield, California) had a solid night with a third place finish at Petaluma Speedway. Piloting the McQueen Racing #7 Simpson Racing Products / Lucas Oil Spike, the 2012 Champion qualified third overall and placed third in her heat race. McQueen heads to the schedule break ranked twelfth in the point standings.

Michael Faccinto (Hanford, California) scored fourth at the checkered flags. Racing the MF Motorsports’ owned #35F OZV / Lucas Oil Spike, Faccinto was fifth fast in time trials and ran second to Cory Elliott in his heat race. The second generation driver is second in the point chase with one feature win, two Woodland Auto Display Fast Time Awards, one heat race victory, six top-10 finishes, and 57 feature laps led on the year.

Greg Bragg (Visalia, California) claimed fifth in Petaluma’s “Jack London Hall of Fame Night.” Driving the Dave Thurston owned #11 Bruce Thurston Enterprises Spike, Bragg qualified seventh overall and placed fourth in his heat race.

Dustin Golobic (Fremont, California) earned his first Woodland Auto Display Fast Time Award of the campaign. Piloting Doug Bock’s #26 Hubbard Motorsports / Factory Kahne Shocks Spike, Golobic ran fifth in his heat race and scored twentieth in the feature after an early exit.

Cory Elliott (Bakersfield, California) raced to victory in the program’s DJ Safety Heat Race #2. Driving the family owned #11E FK Indy / Oilwize Spike, Elliott was eleventh quick in time trials and ran seventh in the main event after starting eleventh. Last season’s Rookie of the Year left Petaluma ranked fourth in points with three heat race victories and four top-10 finishes.

Frankie Guerrini (San Rafael, California) won the night’s 8-lap Brown & Miller Racing Solutions Heat Race #3. Racing the family owned #63 F&F Racing / Davis Motorsports Spike, Guerrini qualified ninth overall and took sixth in the main event from ninth. Last year’s BCRA Champion sits third in the point chase with one Competition Suspension Inc. / Rod End Supply Semi-Main win and six top-10 finishes in the campaign.

After taking a break in the schedule, the USAC Western States Midgets will return to action on Saturday, September 3rd, at Calistoga Speedway. The 2-day “Louie Vermeil Classic” at the Napa County Fairgrounds is part of a Northern California swing that includes Chico’s Silver Dollar Speedway on Thursday, September 8th. Also showcasing the Amsoil USAC/CRA Sprint Cars, more event information can be found at, or calling 916.773.7225.

The USAC Western States Midget Series thanks Hoosier Tire, Brown and Miller Racing Solutions, Competition Suspension Incorporated, DJ Safety, Diversified Machine Incorporated, Extreme Mufflers, Keizer Aluminum Wheels, Rod End Supply, Stand 21 Racer Goes Safer Foundation, Ultra Shield Race Products, 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 You can also find exclusive content on the USAC Western States Midget Facebook and Twitter pages.

Loudpedal Productions has USAC Western States Midget DVDs and videos on demand available for purchase at and 805.407.7229.



1. Ronnie Gardner-486, 2. Michael Faccinto-446, 3. Frankie Guerrini-355, 4. Cory Elliott-326, 5. Cody Swanson-290, 6. Randi Pankratz-287, 7. Tyler Dolacki-279, 8. Courtney Crone-279, 9. Maria Cofer-249, 10. Sean Dodenhoff-242, 11. Robert Dalby-231, 12. Shannon McQueen-183, 13. Darren Hagen-163, 14. Terry Nichols-158, 15. Dylan Ito-156, 16. Alex Schutte-145, 17. Robby Josett-125, 18. Troy Rutherford-113, 19. Ashley Hazelton-111, 20. Britton Bock-102.




September 3: Calistoga Speedway – Calistoga, CA (Louie Vermeil Classic)

September 4: Calistoga Speedway – Calistoga, CA (Louie Vermeil Classic)

September 8: *Silver Dollar Speedway – Chico, CA (Gold Cup Race of Champions)

September 17: Santa Maria Raceway – Santa Maria, CA

October 8: Merle Stone Chevrolet Thunderbowl Raceway - Tulare, CA

October 29: Ventura Raceway – Ventura, CA

November 19: Bakersfield Speedway – Bakersfield, CA

November 24: #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.



#28 Alex Schutte Wins at Petaluma. Photo by Chuck Fry.