STOCKTON, Calif. — Shanon McQueen, considered by many to be the top female midget driver in the nation, scored her first win in two years aboard her Spike/Esslinger midget in Saturday’s BCRA feature at the Stockton Fairgrounds.
The evening’s fastest qualifier began the 30-lap feature on the outside of the fourth row in the 18-car event, charging to third by the conclusion of the first lap, then passing second-running Pete Davis’ HotHead Heater TCR/Esslinger to run second at the end of lap two, setting her sights on the leading Nick Chivello.
McQueen quickly moved into contention, drawing up side-by-side at the line on the sixth round of the three-eighths-mile dirt track.
Aiming for the low groove as the duo charged into the third turn, she claimed the lead.
At this point Alex Schutte, winner at the previous Stockton Fairgrounds feature, moved into third over Sean Dodenhoff’s EMC/Fontana.
As McQueen began opening her advantage the race for second tightened through the 14th round when the caution flag was waved for a stalled car.
At the green, Chivello spun in the first turn for another yellow, losing his third-running position. Upon the restart Dodenhoff made good his bid for second over Schutte. At this point Matt Streeter, aboard the Mike Sala Spike/Wirth Chevy, charged into third over Schutte with Taylor Simas up to fifth in the Doug Bock Hubbard Motorsport Spike/Esslinger. Barry Pries in the BRAP Racing Spike/Esslinger held sixth over Chad Nichols’ Spike/Esslinger and Scott Kinney in the Blackwell machine.
The 19th lap saw another caution flag as Scott Pierovich spun his Spike/Fontana exiting the fourth turn.
With the field bunched for the green flag, Dodenhoff spent the next several laps on the rear nerf of the leading McQueen. Following the final caution period for a stalled car, Dodenhoff again put the pressure on the leader as they charged into the first turn. McQueen, running higher on the track that usual, caught a rut and hiked high into the air, allowing Dodenhoff to move under to take command on the 23rd circuit. His lead was short lived as McQueen regained her composure and sped down the backstretch and charged under Dodenhoff to regain the lead. From that point on McQueen pulled away to take the checkered flag for the win.
McQueen celebrated her victory at the winner’s podium by dedicating her win to her deceased mother and grandmother.
Dodenhoff placed second over Schutte, Streeter, Simas and Nichols.
Shanon McQueen, Sean Dodenhoff, Alex Schutte, Matt Streeter, Taylor Simas, Chad Nichols, Barry Pries, Scott Kinney, Gary Conterno, Britton Bock, Bill Lindsey, Floyd Alvis, J.R. Williams, Nick Chivello, Scott Pierovich, Pete Davis, Terry Tarditi, Marvin Mitchell.