Simas Sizzles During Petaluma Midget Go
PETALUMA, Calif. – Taylor Simas came out on top of highly charged feature at Petaluma Speedway Saturday night in Bay Cities Racing Ass’n midget action.
Simas took the 30-lap feature aboard his Spike/Esslinger with an inside pass of Nick Chivello on the 24th circuit as they exited the fourth turn, with Chivello taking second at the finish over rim-riding Sean Dodenhoff.
The feature got underway following two first-lap cautions for a spinning Mike Donaldson and then a duplicate spin by Bill Lindsey. Chivello jumped into the lead in his Beast/Esslinger over Dodenhoff with Matt Streeter and Scott Pierovich following. Fast qualifier Shannon McQueen held fifth with Simas up to sixth. The restart was short-lived as Donaldson spun a second time and was ejected from the race with the two-spin rule.
At the green, with Chivello running the low groove, Dodenhoff elected for the high groove and the two pitched hard into the turns, running side-by-side with Chivello gaining the edge at the line each time. On the sixth round Pierovich fought his way by Streeter for third. On the eighth round Dodenhoff’s high groove paid off and he slipped his EMC/Fontana into the lead with McQueen’s Spike/Esslinger replacing Streeter for fourth. Chivello, not taking his loss of the lead lightly, continued the side-by-side challenge, nearly retaking the lead several times. Simas, methodically worked on Streeter, taking over fifth.
Pierovich earnestly worked on Chivello for second, and exiting turn two on the 17th lap the duo split to each side as they lapped J.R. Williams, with Pierovich charging his Spike/Fontana into the number-two slot directly behind Dodenhoff.
On the 20th circuit the water pump shaft broke on McQueen’s mount and she came to a halt near the finish line to bring out the caution flag. Upon the green it was once again a three-way battle for the lead. As the trio exited turn four side-by-side, third-running Chivello bounded to the inside and accelerated by both Pierovich and outside runner Dodenhoff to take the lead once again. At this very moment, the drive line on the Pierovich machine ended his winning bid and he became a DNF.
As the leaders crossed the line Scott Kinney, aboard the Blackwell entry, was involved in contact with another car and gyrated high into the air, flipping several times before landing upright at the end of the front straight to bring out the red flag. Kinney quickly extracted himself form the car to the crowd’s acknowledgment. At this point both Pierovich and fifth-running Streeter in the Sala Spike/Wirth Chevy were out, leaving only eight cars able to continue. This put Simas up behind Chivello with Dordenhoff in third over Barry Pries and Floyd Alvis.
At the resumption, Simas immediately put pressure on Chivello and on the 24th circuit, dropped low in turn four and charged into the lead. Now in the lead, Simas began opening his advantage, but lost it when Rick Cook stalled just past the starter’s stand for the final yellow.
Off and running, a significant gap opened between the top three as they completed the final four laps to the checkered flag. Following Simas was Chivello, Dodenhoff, Pries, Alvis and Cook completing the full 30-laps, with Williams and Rick Holbrook running down a lap.
Taylor Simas, Nick Chivello, Sean Dodenhoff, Barry Pries, Floyd Alvis, Rick Cook, J.R. Williams, Rick Holbrook, Bill Lindsey, Scott Pierovich, Matt Streeter, Scott Kinney, Shannon McQueen, Chad Nichols, Gary Conterno, Mike Donaldson.