Santos Controls New Smyrna Midget Run

Bobby Santos III during USAC midget competition at New Smyrna Speedway earlier this month. (John DaDalt photo)
Bobby Santos III won Monday’s USAC midget feature at New Smyrna Speedway. (John DaDalt photo)

NEW SMYRNA BEACH, Fla. — Kyle Larson may have been tied up winning a stock car race at Daytona Int’l Speedway, but RW Motorsports continued its dominance of USAC Mopar National Midget Series competition with Bobby Santos topping Monday night’s 30-lap race at New Smyrna Speedway.

It was the 11th career USAC midget victory for Santos.

After the night’s two Scrambles, RW’s three drivers for the night found themselves starting 1-3, with Florida veteran and USAC stalwart Dave Steele jumping to the early lead. After leading on Sunday and succumbing to a flattening tire, Santos followed his teammate for just four laps on Monday before jumping to the high side and taking the lead on lap five.

Shortly after, the third teammate, Kyle O’Gara, swept under Steele to take second, and the night’s Fast Qualifier Caleb Armstrong followed suit. In a race that saw 27 green-flag laps before a late caution, the trio walked away from the field and were unchallenged after the restart. Santos held a .794-second advantage at the stripe in his Rotondo Weirich – Fontana Automotive No. 17 Beast/Fontana.

“The whole RW Motorsports team did a great job this weekend. Winning a race to start the season is a good way to start the year. I was pumped to win tonight, especially after last night and really thinking I should have won that one. We just have really fast cars, and I’m happy to win,” Santos said.

O’Gara completed what was a breakout weekend for the youngster, joining an all-star cast and finishing in the second spot aboard the Rotondo Weirich – Fontana Automotive No. 27 Beast/Fontana.

“I have to thank Steve Weirich and everybody for the opportunity to be a part of this. Working with Santos, Steele, and Larson this weekend has been incredible. It was a huge learning weekend for me, and I’m glad to end it with a podium finish. Everything went smoothly and we got a 1-2 tonight, so I definitely can’t complain,” O’Gara said.

Armstrong had to settle for the third spot after pressuring O’Gara at different times in the race.

Early leader Steele wound up fourth in the Rotondo Weirich – Fontana Automotive No. 17b Beast/Fontana and Tanner Swanson rounded out the top five in the Keith Kunz Motorsports No. 67.