Seven races are in the books and three are on tap this weekend for World Racing Group’s Xtreme Outlaw Midget Series as the series concludes their inaugural season with a chance for three more first-time winners.
Winless, Zach Daum holds a 48-point advantage over Bryan Wiedeman, who earned his first Xtreme Midget win in the most recent race for the series on August 27th at Davenport Speedway. Both Daum and Wiedeman achieved their spots with consistency. In seven races, Daum swept the top 10; Wiedeman has six such finishes.
Each can pad their total on Thursday as the tiny .125-mile Port City Raceway kicks off the finale weekend in Tulsa, Okla. On Friday and Saturday, the season closes out on the .2-mile I-44 Riverside Speedway in Oklahoma City.
A little less than $15k is on the line for winning the three races and $10k will be paid to the champion, but the money is secondary to the potential prestige of being named the first Outlaw Midget title holder for the same sanctioning body that hosts the World of Outlaws Sprint and Late Model Series.
Daum already boasts three POWRi National Midget titles, in 2013, 2014 and 2016.
“Hopefully, we can go and win all three,” Daum said in a release. “That would be ideal. We haven’t won in a Midget all year. We’ve given a few away. Not just with the Xtreme deal. I feel like in USAC, too, we’ve given a few away that maybe if the stars aligned should have won. Those hurt a little bit. I’d like to get a couple more wins before the end of the year. Just get something. I hate being the guy that wins the championship but doesn’t win the race.”
“It can be done and there is a model for consistency in that but at the end of the day the only thing that matters in racing is winning. I would really like to get Bundy (Mitchell, his team owner) a win. That would mean a lot to me.
Wiedeman needs to pressure Daum on all three nights. He has not yet won at Port City, but ran second to Buddy Kofoid in a Micro Sprint race in March. He won in that same series at I-44 in October, 2020.
Brenham Crouch also has a shot at the championship, but will need the others to have trouble.
As one of the lowest rungs on the Outlaw Sprints ladder system, most of the winners this season have been in their teens or early 20s. Michael Pickens, 39, is the oldest winner after taking the checkered flag at I-55 Speedway in Pevely, Mo. Winning the season opener at Millbridge Speedway in Salisbury, N.C., 14-year-old Gavan Boschele is the youngest.
Two female drivers won in the first three round. Taylor Reimer won at Millbridge with Jade Avedisian taking the checkers at Jacksonville (Ill.) Speedway. Altogether, the average age of Xtreme Outlaw Midget Series winners is 22.
As Daum and Wiedeman take center stage battling for the championship, the series has a chance to end with 10 unique winners in 10 rounds. Daum is still seeking his first win and in the next three nights, some great local drivers will challenge.
Cannon McIntosh is perhaps the strongest Midget driver without an Xtreme Outlaw win. He’s won half of the races he started in POWRi National Midgets.
Kyle Jones earned a career-best, third-place finish in the most recent Xtreme Outlaw Midget Series race at Davenport behind Wiedeman and Daum. He also won the recent Midget event held at Port City one month ago. He is also one of five drivers to advance to all seven features in the Xtreme Outlaws.
Another crash while leading at Seattle dropped Chase Sexton from the top of the NBC SuperMotocross Power Rankings while solid performances by Cooper Webb and Eli Tomac allow them to climb the chart and threaten to make this a two-rider battle with six rounds remaining in the 2023 Monster Energy Supercross season.
During the race, Webb knew he had ground to make up. Riding behind both Tomac and Sexton early in the Main, he was as far back as fifth on Lap 7 at Seattle. That position would cost him the red plate and give away the advantage he began to build with his first win of the season in Tampa. Sexton is often at his best as he battles from the back and he methodically worked his way through the field. At the end of the feature, he was nearly five seconds off Tomac’s pace, but during the past 45 days, he holds the advantage. A resurgent Tomac that could erase that advantage quickly though.
Tomac struggled in Indianapolis with a neck strain. That contributed to his worst performance of 2023 and his second result outside the top five. He finished third in Detroit two weeks ago, but it was a distant third after finishing off the podium in his heat during that round. In Seattle, it appeared the same thing might happen when Tomac finished third in the prelim behind his two principal competitors Webb and Sexton. The Main was a different story.
Tomac dropped to fourth in the opening laps behind both of his rivals early in the race, but he got around Webb on Lap 2 and kept charging. When Sexton fell to the ground on Lap 11 and dropped to fourth, Tomac was in position to strike. He scored his sixth win of the season to tie James Stewart for second on the all-time wins list. He now shares the red plate with Webb as the rounds wind down.
Sexton has the speed, but he lacks the seasoning of Webb and Tomac. He’s pressing hard on every lap and that has bitten him several times this year. Sexton’s mistakes are costing him with a 10th-place finish at Indy, the loss of seven points at Detroit and a fifth in Seattle as the riders he’s battling stood on the podium. No one seriously questions Sexton’s talent or speed, but ultimately the results are what counts.
Justin Barcia is hitting his stride. He advances two positions this week after scoring his fourth consecutive top-five and second podium in that span of races. Barcia finished between sixth and eighth in five consecutive rounds from Anaheim 2 through Arlington, but he’s mostly avoided controversy and that puts him fourth in this week’s SuperMotocross Power Rankings after Seattle.
Jason Anderson had a solid performance in Seattle, but with a fifth-place finish in his heat and fourth in the Main he just keeps losing a little ground to the leaders. The biggest impact to his standing in the NBC Power Rankings is a 10th-place finish in Indianapolis that will take a while to age out of the 45-day formula. He’s tied for fourth in the championship points with Ken Roczen, who sits sixth in the rankings below. It’s important to be the rider “best in class” with Webb, Tomac and Sexton stealing the show.
The 250 West riders were back in action in Seattle and that gave Jett Lawrence the opportunity to break out of a tie with his brother Hunter Lawrence on the all-time wins list. It also provided Jett the opportunity to take back the top spot in the NBC SuperMotocross Power Rankings after Seattle.
Jett has stood on the podium in every race this year with the exception of the second Triple Crown race at Anaheim 2 and that level of perfection gives him bragging rights. Rest assured that while the two brothers have a bond that is unapparelled in motorsports, there is no one they would rather beat. Neither has been particularly successful in Triple Crown rounds this year, however, and Jett could lose his advantage in two weeks in Glendale, Arizona under that format.
A rivalry is developing between Lawrence and Cameron McAdoo. Tired of losing to the affable Australian, McAdoo pushed the envelope last week in Seattle. He crowded Lawrence in the whoops during their heat race and sent both to the ground. That frustration could bubble over with four rounds remaining. One thing is certain, when these two riders are in proximity on the track, the cameras will be aimed in their direction.
A little means a lot this season. Finishing second to Lawrence in four of five rounds, RJ Hampshire would be losing ground to the leader no matter what, but an 11th-place finish in the overall at Anaheim 2 places him eighth on the chart below behind two of the 250 West riders and five 250 East competitors.
In the mains, Levi Kitchen has been all over the board with a win, one more top-five, two results on the high side of the single digits and a crash-induced 21st at San Diego. He’s really shown his speed in the heats, however, with a perfect record of top-fives and a win.
Mitchell Oldenburg makes the top five list among West riders with a perfect record of top-10 finishes. He’s heading in the wrong direction, however, falling from ninth overall to 11th after finishing outside the top five in both his heat and the Main last week.
Jett Lawrence – W
Hunter Lawrence – E
Nate Thrasher – E
Cameron McAdoo – W
Haiden Deegan – E
Jeremy Martin – E
Jordon Smith – E
RJ Hampshire – W
Levi Kitchen – W
Max Anstie – E
Mitchell Oldenburg – W
Max Vohland – W
Tom Vialle – E
Pierce Brown – W
Enzo Lopes – W
Chris Blose – E
Chance Hymas – E
Michael Mosiman – E
Stilez Robertson – W
Phil Nicoletti – W
* The NBC Power Rankings assign 100 points to a Main event winner and 90 points for each Heat and Triple Crown win, (Triple Crown wins are included with heat wins below the rider’s name). The points decrement by a percentage equal to the number of riders in the field until the last place rider in each event receives five points. The Power Ranking is the average of these percentage points over the past 45 days for the 450 class and last 90 days for 250s (because of the split nature of their season).