Historic first pavement race for POWRi BCRA midgets at Madera Speedway 3/16/2019

From the desk of Kevin Triplett

The Performance Open Wheel Racing Inc. (POWRi) Bay Cities Racing Association (BCRA) Lucas Oil Midget Series presented a non-points exhibition race for the MAVTV Midget Series at the historic 1/3-mile paved Madera Speedway on Saturday March 16, 2019, the first pavement race of the new POWRi BCRA era.

2018 BCRA overall champion Jesse Love in the 51Fifty Energy Drinks sponsored Van Dyne #5 topped the time trials speed chart with a blistering 13.974 second lap. Second qualifier Jerome Rodela in the Trench Shoring/Ed Pink Racing Engines #25 midget was just .019 of a second slower, while David Goodwill in his #3 midget wound up third with a best lap of 14.030 seconds.

Teammates Dylan Nobile and Cody Gerhardt claimed fourth and fifth qualifying spots respectively, while Toledo Ohio USAC Silver Crown racer Austin Nemire claimed sixth quick honors in the Charles Breidinger #80X Honda-powered midget. Rookie contender Robert Carson did not post a qualifying time with the Segur #99 and Cody Jessop unfortunately withdrew his #00 before qualifying with engine woes.

Both Nemire and Goodwill were late scratches as the field assembled on track for the heat race. At the drop of the green flag, Rodela shot into the early lead ahead of Gerhardt and Love. Love worked past Cody on lap three, then Nobile relegated his teammate to fourth place on lap five, as Carson pulled his machine into the infield. The finishing order for the eight laps was Rodela, Love, Nobile and Gerhardt.

After the new POWRi BCRA race director Don Thornburg totaled up the passing points from the heat race, Rodela started from the coveted pole position with the young phenom Love alongside while Nobile and Gerhardt shared the second row for the 40-lap feature race. At the drop of the green flag, Rodela and Love raced side-by-side around the track for the first lap before Jerome pulled ahead in his Toyota-powered machine as the pair crossed the stripe for the first time.

By lap seven, Rodela had extended his advantage to 10 car lengths over the 14-year old Love, while Nobile rode in third place ahead of Gerhardt. By lap fourteenth, the dominant red-and-white #25 midget held a straightaway advantage over second place, which was extended to ½ alp by lap 26.  On lap 32, Rodela lapped past fourth place Cody Gerhardt  on his way to a dominant nine-second $1500 victory at the drop of the checkered flag over Love, Nobile and Gerhardt, while 2019 POWRi BCRA series Rookie-of-the-Year contender Robert Carson in the Segur #99 scored a solid fifth place.

The Performance Open Wheel Racing Inc. (POWRi) Bay Cities Racing Association (BCRA) Lucas Oil Midget Series returns to action on April 27 at the lightning fast new Stockton 99 Speedway paved track along with the Gun Slingers Wing Sprint Car Series, North State Modified Series, Legends of Kearney Bowl, BCRA Midgets, Western US Midgets and the Vintage Midget division.

The POWRi BCRA Lucas Oil Midget Series returns to Madera Speedway for a double points MAVTV Midget Series $1500-to-win race on May 4 as part of a back-to-back POWRi BCRA dirt/asphalt midget racing weekend.