A.J. Gilbert
A.J. Gilbert

A.J. Gilbert
Tonganoxie, KS

Big Night For Baker and Burks at Helm Memorial!
62
9/25/2022

9/25/2022

Midwest Wingless Racing Association


Big Night For Baker and Burks at Helm Memorial!

Grain Valley, Mo: Saturday night the stars and cars of the Wholesale Batteries, Inc. USAC Midwest Wingless Racing Association did battle one last time this season for the Helm Memorial. Cody Baker would take the victory, while Wyatt Burks won the MWRA Championship for the 2nd time in the last three years racing with this USAC series.

29 cars checked into the pits at Valley Speedway on a beautiful fall night for racing at the 5th annual Helm Memorial. “The Sheriff” from Topeka, Kansas, driving the Don Rumsey/Wyatt Burks Racing 11w only needed to qualify for the feature to win his second MWRA championship, which he did successfully after running second in the 4th heat to best Chris Parkinson of Gladstone, Missouri, for the championship. Meanwhile positions 3 thru 5 in the final standings, as well as rookie of the year would not be decided until later in the program.

During heat race action, Baker of Lone Jack, Mo. raced to victory in the 1st heat driving the Ted Hall Racing, Tribble Racing 38. With Spring Hill, Ks. driver Chad Goff coming from last to win the 2nd heat in the Chad Goff Motorsports 9x earning high point honors. While Luke Howard of Overland Park, Ks. won the 3rd heat, and Jack Wagner of Lone Jack bested Burks in the JHR Racing 77 for the win in heat race number 4.

After the redraw during intermission which would relegate high point man Goff to the 6th starting position for the 25 lap feature. A 12 car B main would decide who would join the top 16 cars in points after the heats for the 25 lapper.

3rd place in points coming into Saturday’s program Dakota Earls of Independence, Mo. driving the Earls 15e would win the semi over 4th place in points at the time, and (ROY) candidate Chad Winfrey of Gladstone driving the Chris Parkinson Racing 65w. While Warren Wojo Johnson of Overland Park, Jason Billups of Holt, Mo., Kyle Lewis of Spring Hill, and Zach Clark, of Olathe, Ks. would take the final 4 spots for the Helm A feature. Afterwards, 3-time defending Helm victor Wesley Smith of Nixa, Mo., and (ROY) candidate A.J. Gilbert of Tonganoxie, Ks. were added to the Main event field with provisional’s.

The 25 lap Helm Memorial would have its fair share of excitement as contenders Wagner and Taylor Walton of Odessa, Missouri, would be involved in a early accident relegating them 23rd and 24th place finishes respectively. Next a accident on the front stretch involving Brian Beebe of Oak Grove, Mo. and Ty Hulsey of Owasso, Oklahoma, would take both drivers out of the feature on lap 6. While ending the bid of Beebe for a top 5 finish in the final standings for 2022.

Once the racers settled into the task at hand battles throughout the field ensued for the remainder of the 25 Lap feature. On the 22nd lap, Baker who had stalked Burks all feature long for the lead, briefly passing him several times on unsuccessful slide jobs, caught the 2022 champ in traffic to pass him for the win.

For Baker it was his first win of the season racing in the MWRA after winning the lid-lifter last year at Nevada, Missouri. While Burks second place run gave him a 7th podium finish in 2022. Which was made even more impressive by the 11w team also never finishing lower than 4th in any race this season running with the MWRA. A testament to the skill of Burks on the track, but also his father Jeff off the track wrenching the Rumsey/Burks sprint car.

Rounding out the top 5 at Valley were Goff scratching and clawing his way to not only a 3rd place in the Helm Memorial feature, but 3rd place in the final standings after starting the night in 6th place in points. With Sweet Springs, Missouri’s Quinton Benson running 4th, and Howard coming home 5Th.

Positions 6 thru 10 at Valley Speedway for the Helm Memorial would include defending MWRA champ Kory Schudy of Battlefield, Mo. running 6th, defending 3-time Helm winner Smith in 7th, (JDLawsonMedia Award Hard Charger) Parkinson in 8th, Kearney, Mo’s Brad Wyatt finishing 9th, and Earls rebounding after a bad heat race to win the Semi, and finish 10th in the feature, while securing a career best 4th place in the final standings.

Side note: Chad Winfrey in his rookie campaign with the MWRA would finish 5Th in the final standings for 2022 after finishing 15th in the feature event. While bonuses of $100 dollars each went to Jason Billups for finishing 12th, and Taylor Walton for finishing the most positions in reverse, 4th to 24th.

The next event on the MWRA calendar will be the “Night of Champions Banquet November 19th, 2022 at the Platte County Fairgrounds.

USAC Racing
Wholesale Batteries, Inc.
JDLawsonMedia
dirt2media.com
Valley Speedway
Rod End Supply
Pit Stop Catering
BSmithEnterprises
Country Kids Day Care of Olathe
High Fly'N Photos www.highfly-nphotos.com


Article Credit: Ray Cunningham

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