MOTORING ALONG
DRAYTON VALLEY, AB. (October 5) -  The first full season of motorsports action at Drayton Valley Speedway comes to an end with a two-day show this weekend.  The track formally known as Rapid Fire Motorsports Park crowns its 2016 season champions on Sunday.  Back in May, the race facility, located north of Drayton Valley, Alberta, sprung back to life after laying dormant since 2006.  Track president Brandon Murray says his first year at the helm was rewarding.  "We had racers come from all over Alberta and from British Columbia and Saskatchewan run at our facility.  It's been great to be a part of the team that got this track up and running again." 

It comes as no surprise that the final weekend of racing at Drayton Valley Speedway is being held on the Thanksgiving Long Weekend.  "Me and my crew are definitely thankful for all our volunteers and to the race teams that supported us this season."  When Murray scheduled the last race of the season in the month of October he knew he could be fighting the weather.  "Planning our schedule (back in March) the decision was made right off the bat that we were going to race in October.  We'll shovel snow if we have too!"  The forecast is calling for possible flurries or rain showers on Saturday and Sunday.  Drayton Valley Speedway has not cancelled any race events in 2016 due to weather.  "It's not very often a track can say they did not have a single rainout in a season." 


2016 NPP SERIES ROOKIE OF THE YEAR WILL BE TURNING LAPS AT DVS
......................................................................................................(photo: Stpracing Memories)

The Northern Provincial Pipelines Late Model Series did not schedule a points race event at Drayton Valley Speedway in 2016 however there will be a NPP Series competitor in the field this weekend.  Ashmont, Alberta's Jeff Duperron, the 2016 NPP Late Model Series Rookie of the Year, will be behind the wheel of his Motion Motorsport/Spaid Automotive #108 Chevrolet.  Duperron will be running with the Super Stocks.  NPP Late Model Series officials hope to add a Drayton Valley race date to their schedule for the 2017 season.                      



2006 SEASON CHAMPIONSHIP WEEKEND
Drayton Valley Speedway - Drayton Valley, Alberta
-
>SATURDAY/SUNDAY, October 8th/9th
Classes racing:
Sportsman Sprint Cars (as of Friday, October 7th at 3:30pm)
Super Stocks
Street Stocks/Trucks
Mini Stocks
-
-SATURDAY-
2:00pm - Spectator Gates
3:00pm - Racing
-
-SUNDAY-
Noon - Spectator Gates
1:00pm - Racing

Spectator Admission (Saturday or Sunday)
$10.00 - General
$ 5.00 - Children and Seniors

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UPDATE: (Friday, October 7th @ 3:30pm) Drayton Valley Speedway track officials will make a decision at 8AM Saturday morning regarding the status of the final race weekend of the 2016 season. Officials will be keeping an eye on precipitation levels between now and decision time on Saturday morning.

UPDATE: (Saturday, October 8th @ 8:55am) Drayton Valley Speedway officials have cancelled Saturday and Sunday's scheduled event thanks to overnight snow and rain. The 2016 race season is officially over. This is the first weather cancellation of the season for the Drayton Valley, Alberta facility.

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THE CHAMP HEADS SOUTH
SIDNEY, BC (October 10) - The race season in Canada may be over but that doesn't stop Canadians from seeking out the longer race season south of the border.  Darrell Midgley, the 2016 NPP Late Model Series Champion, will again compete at select tracks in the United States this fall and winter.  The Sidney, British Columbia driver will be racing the Northern Provincial Pipelines Ltd. #81 Dodge.  "We are going to head to Las Vegas in a couple of weeks.  After that we'll head off to Tucson for some racing.  We might end up at a few events in California as well."  Midgley's trip to Las Vegas Motors Speedway later this month will be his 9th visit to the Nevada facility.  "Smashed up the car pretty good last year but still managed a 12th place finish." 


LATE MODEL AND SUPER LATE MODEL ACTION FOR MIDGLEY IN VEGAS

For the fourth consecutive year, Midgley will also be doubling down in Las Vegas at the 2016 Senators Cup Fall Classic.  The Bullring at Las Vegas Motor Speedway is again running two separate races for the pavement Late Model and the Super Late Model.  "We ran both classes last year and we are doing it again this year.  It's definitely going to be a hectic few days for the team."  Once the Las Vegas weekend concludes, Midgley and team load up and compete the following weekend at Tucson Speedway in Arizona.  "Had a really good time at this track last year.  Fun place to race."  Midgley lead close to 50 laps at last year's Turkey Shoot 125.  "It really was unfortunate we had a tire go down while leading that race."  Midgley fought back and eventually finished 8th.  "Really want to thank Dwight [Kennedy] for giving me this opportunity.  It really is a chance of a lifetime."  Dwight Kennedy is the owner of Northern Provincial Pipelines Ltd. in Edson, Alberta.

MIDGLEY: OFF-SEASON SCHEDULE
October 20 - 22           Las Vegas Motor Speedway (The Bullring) - Las Vegas, Nevada
October 28 - 29           Tucson Speedway - Tucson, Arizona
November 25 - 26       Tucson Speedway - Tucson, Arizona
February 2 - 4             Tucson Speedway - Tucson, Arizona
TBA                            Kern County Speedway - Bakersfield, California
TBA                            Irwindale Speedway - Irwindale, California

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UPDATE: (October 17 @ 12:30pm) - Darrell Midgley has parked his Late Model for the season and will focus on his Super Late Model program this fall and winter. "After how the car performed at the Canada 200 (September 4th - Western Speedeway) there is something amiss with it." The original plan was to compete in the Late Model and Super Late Model classes at Las Vegas Motor Speedway this weekend. Midgley and Team NPP will focus efforts on just the Super Late Model for the upcoming races in Las Vegas, Tucson, Arizona and possibly some events in California. The Team NPP car hauler left Vancouver Island Sunday and will remain in the United States until at least March of 2017.

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TIME TO FOCUS
LAS VEGAS, NV.
(October 19) - The 2016 champion of the NPP Late Model Series begins his 'off-season' racing schedule this weekend in Las Vegas, Nevada.  Darrell Midgley is competing on The Bullring at Las Vegas Motor Speedway at the annual 2016 Senators Cup Fall Classic.  Eight classes are on the racing docket Friday and Saturday, October 21st and 22nd.  For the past three years Midgley has run both the Late Model and Super Late Model classes at this big event.  For 2016, Midgley has fine-tuned his 8th consecutive visit to the Las Vegas facility.  The Sidney, British Columbia driver will only be running the Northern Provincial Pipelines/Alien Chassis #81 Dodge Super Late Model.  "We left the Late Model at home," exclaims Midgley  "after how the car performed at the Canada 200 (September 4th - Western Speedway) there is something amiss with it.  It's been parked."  Midgley is not disappointed with leaving one of the cars back at the race shop.  "We get to focus on one car and one class this time." 


MIDGLEY FINISHED 12TH IN THE SLM FEATURE IN VEGAS LAST YEAR

Last year's appearance in Las Vegas with the Super Late Model was certainly memorable.  Midgley qualified 16th out of 39 cars.  "We ran our fastest qualifying lap ever in Vegas (14.966 seconds).  We came back after getting taken out in the Heat and finished 12th in the Feature."  Midgley won last year's Last Chance race to secure a spot in the Super Late Model Feature.  This year's race format is the same as last year but with one major adjustment.   "It's paying $15,000 to win (up $5,000).  The big money brings out more elite teams that chase the big money.  You are going to see some heavy competition."  At this point Midgley is the only Canadian pre-registered for this weekend's race.  Only 24 cars start the Saturday night Feature.  "A top-ten would be fantastic (this weekend).  I think we have a pretty good crack at it.  We are well prepared.  The car is ready and the team is ready."  Midgley and team hit the track for the first time Thursday afternoon for several on-track practice sessions.  Qualifying and Heat races are scheduled Friday.  The $40,000 Super Late Model 150 wraps up the 2016 Senators Fall Classic race event on Saturday night. After Las Vegas, Darrell Midgley and Team NPP head towards the Mexican border and a two-day show at Tucson Speedway in Tucson, Arizona on Friday and Saturday, October 28th and 29th.

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UPDATE: (7:53pm Friday, October 21st) A stout field of 45 Super Late Models has packed the pits at Las Vegas Motorspeedway. Darrell Midgley was 20th quick in qualifying with a best time of 14.885(-.355). Dustin Ash of Las Vegas, Nevada qualified #1 and set a new track record at 14.528. Victoria, BC's Wade Bland, last months winner of the Canada 200 at Western Speedway, was 10th quick running 14.791 (-.263).

UPDATE: (9:56pm Friday, October 21st) Sidney, BC's Darrell Midgley started fifth in Heat race 4. On Lap 1 the red flag came out after a vicious single car crash (driver OK). Midgley was not involved and drove on to a 3rd place finish in Heat 4 locking himself into Saturday nights Feature event in Las Vegas. Also locking himself into Saturday nights Feature event was Wade Bland. The Victoria, BC driver finished second in Heat 2.

In the Feature, on Lap 53 and while running 16th, Midgley suffers a catastrophic engine failure heading into turn 1. Oil and debris on the track forces officials to throw the Red flag for major cleanup. Midgley credited with a 22nd place finish.

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WIN SOME LOSE SOME
LAS VEGAS, NV. (October 22) - The race weekend at Las Vegas Motor Speedway ended on a bit of a sour note for Team NPP and Darrell Midgley.  "Blew up the motor tonight," sighs the Sidney, British Columbia driver, "we were really good.  Gained several spots in the early going and then that was it."  The race weekend in Las Vegas did start off positive for Midgley and his team.  "We qualified 20th (out of 45 cars) on Friday," explains the driver of the Northern Provincial Pipelines Ltd./Alien Chassis #81 Dodge, "we were faster than last year.  Then we locked ourselves into the Saturday night show with a third place finish in the Heat."  Only 24 cars would start the Saturday night Senators Cup Fall Classic 150.  "The prize money was up. There were more elite teams here."  At the drop of the green Midgley immediately moved up two spots to 18th.  "Had some really good battles early.  It was tough." Midgley battled hard and exchanged positions (18th - 20th) several times with Nampa, Idaho's Trevor Cristiani and Las Vegas, Nevada's Kayli Baker.  On Lap 49 the battle for 17th began with John Newhouse.  Midgley got by the Twin Falls, Idaho driver on Lap 50.  On the start of  Lap 53 heading into turn 1 Midgley's engine let go.  "It basically exploded."  The race was red flagged due to the amount of oil and debris that was left on the track.  "We have backup engines," says Midgley, "we'll have the engine in before the next race (in Tucson)."  This is not the first time Midgley has had catastrophic engine failure at "The Bullring" at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.  Midgley lost an engine at his Las Vegas debut back in 2002.  Fontana, California's Linny White was the winner of the 2016 Fall Classic in Las Vegas for the second year in a row.  Next race event for Midgley, the three-time NPP Late Model Series champion, is Saturday, October 29th at Tucson Speedway in Tucson, Arizona.

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NEXT STOP: TUCSON, AZ
TUCSON, AZ. (October 26) - Darrell Midgley and Team NPP are in Tucson, Arizona for race number two of their "off-season" schedule.  Tucson Speedway wraps up their 2016 regular season with a full night of racing including a 100 lap Super Late Model Feature on Saturday October 29th.  Although not in the hunt for the points championship at the southern Arizona track, the Sidney, British Columbia driver will be racing as if he was.  "We are here to win for sure.  We are looking forward to the weekend."  The driver of the Northern Provincial Pipelines Ltd./Alien Chassis #81 Dodge is not concerned that he'll be looked on as an outsider.  "It's their points deal.  If they finish behind us that's fine.  To me this is a 100 lap race and we are going to give it all we've got." 


MIDGLEY AT TUCSON SPEEDWAY ON FEBRUARY 6th, 2016
...............................................................(photo: Amanda Heath)

Last weekend Midgley blew the engine in his primary car at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.  The primary car will remain parked for this weekend's race.  "We are going to use another car," admits Midgley, "we have three Super Late Models in the trailer so we're going to the back-up."  This will be the first time Midgley has run this particular back-up car.  "It's a good race car so I'm not worried about it.  We will be taking advantage of some practice time this Friday and Saturday."  Midgley will be back behind the wheel of his primary car (+ new engine) at next month's Turkey Shoot 125.  This Saturday's race will be Midgley's fourth visit to Tucson Speedway.  "Back in February, Midgley ran as high as 6th at the Chilly Willy 150, before a tire problem slowed his progress.  The tire separated in the closing laps and Midgley was credited with a 24th place finish.  "That was a tough race. Hopefully we won't have a repeat of that this weekend." The 2016 NPP Late Model Series Champion has made many contacts since his first visit to Tucson in 2015.  "We have access to a shop now where we can work on the cars.  The hauler will also be stored here between races."  Midgley hits the track at Tucson Speedway on Friday night for a practice session.  A brief practice session Saturday afternoon will be followed by Qualifying and the 100 lap Super Late Model Feature.    

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UPDATE: (Oct 29th @ 6:56pm AZ time) - Darrell Midgley was the 10th car out for qualifying in a 20 car field Saturday night in Arizona. The Sidney, British Columbia driver covered Tucson Speedway's 3/8mile paved oval in 16.005 seconds (-0.335) and ended up 6th fastest in qualifying. Kyle Ray of Littleton, Colorado was the number one qualifier running 15.670. The 100 lap Super Late Model Feature is expected to start around 9:00pm Edmonton time.

UPDATE: (Oct 29th @ 10:04pm AZ time) - Darrell Midgley finished the 100 lap Super Late Model Feature in 13th place Saturday night at Tucson Speedway. Midgley was running 3rd by Lap 50. Excessive wear on the right rear tire forced Midgley to ease up on the throttle. Davenport, Iowa's Ron Norman won the Feature.

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TIRE WEAR IN TUCSON
TUCSON, AZ. (October 29) - Darrell Midgley had the second fastest car on the track in the 100 lap Super Late Model Feature Saturday night at Tucson Speedway.  Unfortunately for the Sidney, British Columbia driver, those fast laps came early in the race.  Thanks to severe tire wear, his lap times were off nearly two seconds by the end of the race.  When the checkered flag flew, Midgley finished 13th.  "We were running third early in the race," exclaims the driver of the Northern Provincial Pipelines/Alien Chassis #81 Dodge, "the yellow flag came out on lap 27.  When we went back to green it kind of went backwards from there."  With Team NPP's primary car blowing an engine at last weekend's race in Las Vegas, Midgley was running the back-up car in Tucson, Arizona.  "This is the first time we've ever run this car.  I can tell you we are really happy with it."  Midgley qualified 6th out of 20 cars earlier in the evening.  "We know that tire wear is a problem here.  Back in February we burned the right front (tire) off  at the Chilly Willy race."  Set-up adjustments were made by the team so as not to have a repeat scenario.  "It was the right rear tire we burned off this time."  At the halfway point of the Feature, Midgley was running 7th. 


MIDGLEY QUALIFIED 6th FINISHED 13th IN ARIZONA

"We've got the speed but now we've got to make it last for the entire race and be there at the end."  With twenty-five laps to go Midgley was running 12th and holding off a hard charging Joe Paladenic.  On lap 90,  Midgley relinquished 12th to the Sierra Vista, Arizona driver.  "We just burned off the right rear tire.  It's very frustrating.  But we are getting there."  Midgley wasn't the only driver to have tire wear issues.  The driver of fastest car on the track suffered a similar fate.  Don Zoll Jr. from Surprise, Arizona ended up 16th.  The winner of Saturday nights 100 Lap Feature was Davenport, Iowa's Ron Norman.  Next race action for Darrell Midgley and Team NPP is the end of November.  "We've got about a month till our next race so we are going to go to work on the primary car."  The Turkey Shoot 125 runs Saturday, November 26th also at Tucson Speedway.


SUPER LATE MODEL 100
> Saturday, October 29th, 2016

1. # 9 Ron Norman - Davenport, Iowa
2. #22 Paul Banghart - Tucson, Arizona
3. #20 Brandon Schilling - Tucson, Arizona
4. #58 Kyle Ray - Littleton, Colorado
5. #07 Chuck Wares - Tucson, Arizona
6 .#71 Ron Searle Jr. - Tucson, Arizona
7. #25 Brandon Farrington -
8. #16 Dustin Jones - Tucson, Arizona
9. # 8 Mariah McGriff - Vail, Arizona
10.# 6 Dane Jorgenson - Tucson, Arizona
11.#51 Sean Bray - Tucson, Arizona
12.#63 Joe Paladenic - Sierra Vista, Arizona
13.#81 Darrell Midgley - Sidney, British Columbia
14.#55 Bobby Hillis - Tucson, Arizona
15.#88 John Lashley - Tucson, Arizona
16.#21 Don Zoll Jr. - Surprise, Arizona
17.#92 Gary Clift - Henderson, Nevada
18.#14 Vanessa Robinson - La Cruces, New Mexico
19.#26 Dylan Jones  - Tucson, Arizona
20.#39 Brian Harrington - Tucson, Arizona

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TENTATIVE 2017 TRACK SCHEDULES
EDMONTON, AB (November 2) - For the first time in recent memory, track officials from Drayton Valley, Drumheller, Edmonton, Rimbey and Sangudo held a joint meeting to discuss the 2017 race season. The province of Alberta has one of the shortest race seasons in all of Canada which leaves a small serving of available race dates to track promoters.  Although the overlapping of race dates between five race tracks is next to impossible, promoters hammered out their 2017 tentative schedules.  Castrol Raceway, Central Alberta Raceways and Sangudo Speedway are three tracks that have trimmed their oval racing calendar for next season.  Drayton Valley Speedway added to its oval schedule, while Dinosaur Downs Speedway will have the same number of oval dates on its schedule next year.  The biggest slash to oval race dates comes from Central Alberta Raceways.  After scheduling 16 oval dates this past season, Rimbey officials announced a 10 race oval schedule for 2017.  Drayton Valley Speedway is the only track to show more race dates on its oval track next season.  Track officials in Drayton Valley are rolling the dice that a two-day show in October next year will see good some weather.  For the 2017 season there are a total of 49 oval race dates at the five Alberta race tracks.  There were 58 individual race dates available to race teams in 2016.  Officials with the Northern Provincial Pipelines Late Model Series will be going over the available race dates at each track.  A tentative NPP Series 2017 schedule will be released early in the new year.

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RACING BILLBOARD
EDSON, AB (November 4) - With hundreds of pace laps and thousands of kilometers of highway travel, the official pace car of the Northern Provincial Pipelines Late Model Series continues to turn heads.  "It's something you don't see every day," exclaims NPP Series announcer Gord Craig, "it's our 370 horsepower racing billboard."  The NPP Late Model Series has been using an official pace car since the 2008 season.  The current pace car is a 2014 Dodge Charger.  "There will probably be over 80,000 kilometers on our current pace car by December 31st." 


NPP SERIES PACE CAR IN VICTORIA, BRITISH COLUMBIA

With race cars currently parked for the long off-season, the pace car becomes a valuable tool.  "Racing and motorsports is furthest from people's' minds between November and March.  For a brief instance that changes when they see it driving down the highway or street. The car may have NPP on the side but in the grand scheme of things it really is an advertisement for local racing." The track logos of Castrol Raceway, Central Alberta Raceways and many other facilities have all appeared on the pace car. The pace car has been seen at 14 different tracks over the years. "Obviously its main task is to lead NPP Late Model drivers to the green flag but our pace car has been used for Sprint Cars, Modifieds, and even ice race cars.  From time to time we do get requests for its use."  The most recent venture for the NPP Sereis pace car was leading a field of pavement Late Models in Victoria, British Columbia at Western Speedway. 


2016 TOP 3 PLUS ROOKIE PACE CAR DECAL

The moving billboard aspect of the NPP Series Pace Car has been in off-season mode since the end of September.  "The top three drivers and rookie of the year will be on display on the back window several times this winter."  On the car right now is a special back window decal promoting a significant race date at Phoenix International Raceway.  "It's not very often you see Canadian sponsors on an American car at an American track."  Canada's DJ Kennington makes his NASCAR Sprint Cup debut behind the wheel of the Northern Provincial Pipelines/Clark Construction #55 Chevrolet on Sunday, November 13th.  "These two Alberta companies should be pretty proud of this."  The moving billboard of the NPP Late Model Series will do its part to let people know. 

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MOTORSPORT BUCKET LIST
PHOENIX, AZ (November 7) - No matter where he finishes on November 13th, two-time Canadian NASCAR Series Champion DJ Kennington will be able to say that he has raced against the best stock car drivers in the world.  Kennington, from St. Thomas, Ontario, makes his NASCAR Sprint Cup debut at Phoenix International Raceway driving the Northern Provincial Pipelines Ltd./Clark Construction #55 Chevrolet.  The race car is based out of the Premium Motorsports shop in Huntersville, North Carolina. 


NORTHERN PROVINCIAL PIPELINES LTD. / CLARK CONSTRUCTION #55 CHEVROLET
............................................................................................................................ (rendering:TDS Graphics)

"They offered me a shot at the Cup car (in Phoenix) after I ran their truck at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park back in September."  Kennington finished 14th in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at the Bowmanville, Ontario track.  On October 30th, again driving for Premium Motorsports, Kennington finished 23rd in the truck race at Martinsville Speedway.  "To get an opportunity to compete in a Cup race is a chance of a lifetime.  It's a dream come true for me."  With 49 NASCAR XFinity Series race starts, Kennington is no stranger to competing south of the border.  "The only track on the NASCAR circuit we've haven't raced is Pocono.  I have a lot of track time in Phoenix which is good but I have spent absolutely zero time in a Cup car."  His first time on the track in a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race car will be Friday, November 11th.  "I'm only going to have about an hour of practice before we have to go qualify." 


KENNINGTON MAKING NASCAR SPRINT CUP DEBUT

"The practice (before qualifying) will probably work out to maybe about thirty laps."  Right now 40 cars are registered for the Phoenix event.  "Just to be able to be there with the likes of Kyle Busch and Jimmy Johnson is something else.  It's a little intimidating.  These guys are the best in the world."  Kennington's family will be joining him at the track in Phoenix.  "To have my family with me at this race is very special.  I've been very fortunate to be able to meet people along the way that have helped me get to where I am today."  Alberta business owners Dwight Kennedy (Northern Provincial Pipelines Ltd.) and Kevin Clark (Clark Construction) will be two people in attendance cheering Kennington on.  Both Kennedy and Clark are making their NASCAR Sprint Cup Series debut as race car sponsors.



> FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 11th

- 40th fastest in Sprint Cup practice/1st time in car
(27.994 seconds / -2.192 /// 128.599 mph / -10.925)
- 34th fastest in Xfinity practice (28.214 / -1.204 /// 127.596 mph / -5.688)
- Kennington qualified 39th for Sundays Sprint Cup Race
(27.146 / -1.527 /// 132.614 mph / -7.908)

> SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 12th
- Kennington qualified 38th for Saturday's Xfinity Series race
(28.288 seconds /127.262mph) then finished 30th Saturday night.
- Kennington was 38th fastest in Sprint Cup practice Saturday afternoon
(27.696 seconds / -1.12 /// 129.983 mph / -5.493)

> SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 13th
- Kennington finished 35th in NASCAR Sprint Cup Series debut.

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UPDATE: (November 10 @ 11:10am) - The race weekend for Canada's DJ Kennington at Phoenix International Raceway just got busier. Along with his debut in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series the St. Thomas, Ontario driver will now compete in his 50th Xfinity Series race. This last minute announcement by Premium Motorsports has Kennington behind the wheel of the Wildhorse Transport #15 Ford Mustang on Saturday afternoon.

UPDATE: (November 11 @ 1:50pm) - Kenningtons first laps behind the wheel of a Sprint Cup car were cautious at PIR Friday. Kennington's best lap in practice on the 1 mile paved tri-oval was 27.994 seconds/128.599mph putting him 40th out of 40 cars entered. In the Xfinity Series practice session Friday afternoon, Kennington ran 28.214seconds/127.596mph which puts him 34th out of 43 cars.

UPDATE: (November 13 @ 3:59pm) - Kennington finished 35th in his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series debut at Phoenix International Raceway. On Saturday night Kennington finished 30th in the Xfinity Series.

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FUN DEBUT IN PHOENIX
AVONDALE, AZ. (November 13) - Canada's DJ Kennington savoured every lap at Phoenix International Raceway on Sunday afternoon. Kennington drove the Northern Provincial Pipelines Ltd./Clark Construction #55 Chevrolet to a 35th place finish in his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series debut. "I'm a very, very fortunate man.  My dream came true today.  It's still is kind of surreal at this point."  On Friday Kennington jumped into the Premium Motorsports prepared race car and hit the track for the very first time.  "I think I only did 32 practice laps heading into qualifying.  Just trying to get comfortable and get used to a Cup car was the goal.  Its sure a lot different to what I'm used to."  Kennington qualified 39th for Sunday's big race. 

Along with running in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, a last minute opportunity allowed Kennington to jump behind the wheel of a NASCAR Xfinity Series race car.  "This was my 50th start in the Xfinity Series.  Sure wish it went better."  Kennington finished 30th on Saturday night.  "Lost a cylinder around lap 30.  It was a big struggle the entire race.  The engine finally let go near lap 175."  Despite Saturdays disappointment, Kennington says all his focus was for Sunday.  "The extra laps around Phoenix was nice in the Xfinity race but the two cars are just so different."  Kennington admits there were butterflys before Sundays race. "I was so nervous getting in that car today.  I haven't been that nervous in a long time.  About lap four all the nerves were gone and it was time to get at it.  I was pretty happy with how it ended up."  Kennington raced smart the entire event.  "My main goal was to run to the best of my abilities in this car but also not to make any mistakes that would screw up other peoples day."  The race was won by Joey Lagono.  Kyle Bush, the reigning NASCAR Sprint Cup Champion, finished second.  "It really was a fun time for me.  Just to be able to be out there today with all those superstars.  The best in the world.  It was pretty cool."


MOTORSPORT BUCKET LIST FULFILLED FOR KENNINGTON IN PHOENIX

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A GOOD GUESS
EDMONTON, AB (November 18) - Winning a season championship in any racing division takes dedication and perseverance. Ten different drivers have won a championship in the Northern Provincial Pipelines Late Model Series since its first official season back in 2001.  This weekend the NASCAR Sprint Cup season wraps up at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Florida. Past and current champions of the NPP Late Model Series did some prognosticating when asked who would be crowned the NASCAR Champion for 2016.

NPP CHAMPIONS HAVE PICKED:
4 - Carl Edwards
2 - Jimmy Johnson
2 - Kyle Busch
1 - Joey Logano

DARRELL MIDGLEY - "Kyle Busch is my first choice.  He is the defending champion and definitely knows how to rise to the occasion."  

MARK MILLER - "I hope Carl is going to win it.  Jimmy and Kyle have already won a championship.  I'd like to see Carl win it."

KEVIN WHEELER - "I think it's going to be Carl Edwards.  I just have a feeling that it is his turn."

MIKE TOM - "Carl Edwards is probably due.  I'll put my money on Edwards."

BRUCE BROUGHTON - "Joey Logano is winning that race on Sunday.  That is my pick.  I think he's going to be the guy.  I've got a 25% chance of being right."

JASON BEAULIEU - "I'd put my money on Jimmy.  He's won the championship a bunch of times and can make some history winning another one." 

DWIGHT KENNEDY - "I'd really like to see Carl Edwards win it.  I think he should take it........ hopefully!"

TREVOR EMOND -  "I'd like to see Kyle Busch win it again.  I'm not a big Toyota fan but Kyle will probably take it."

DENNIS MacEACHERN - "I have to go with Jimmy Johnson.  Experience is the main reason why.  He's dealt with the pressure before and I know that he and Chad Knaus (crew chief) can get it done.  JJ for sure."

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TUCSON TRIP PART TWO
TUCSON, AZ (November 21) - Darrell Midgley officially wraps up his 2016 race season this weekend at Tucson Speedway. The Arizona track hosts their annual Turkey Shoot 125 Super Late Model race on Saturday, November 26th.  This is Midgley's third visit to Tucson Speedway in 2016.  "Really enjoy running here," says the three-time NPP Late Model Series Champion, "it's a great bunch of people that run this facility.  The race teams here have been very welcoming and helpful."  In his most recent visit to Tucson Speedway, the Sidney, British Columbia driver finished 13th back on October 29th.  "We ran as high as 3rd (in this race) but tire wear got us again."  Tire wear troubles have been the achilles heel for Team NPP in Tucson.  At the 2015 Turkey Shoot race, the lone Canadian in the field lead more than 40 laps.  "We had a winning car at this race last year.  We got out front early but then had tire problems." 


MIDGLEY FINISHED 13TH AT TUCSON SPEEDWAY ON OCTOBER 29TH
........................................................................................ (photo:IWSYCP / Tiffany O'Neall)

Midgley hopes the recent purchase of an updated race car part will help with his severe tire wear issues.  "After the last race, we asked around the pits and found out that many teams run a different locker in the rear end of their race cars.  We've made the change.  I've never used one (of these lockers) so I don't really know what to expect but we are going to go with it."  Midgley will have plenty of track time in Tucson before Saturday nights big race.  There are three practice sessions scheduled for this Friday.  "We'll be able to check on the tire wear and work on the balance of the car during practice.  We always had strong starts here.  We just need the staying power on the track so we can be there at the end."


MIDGLEY: FINISHES IN TUCSON

February 2015 - finished 22nd (Chilly Willy)
November 2015 - finished 8th (Turkey Shoot)
February 2016 - finished 24th (Chilly Willy)
October 2016 - finished 13th (regular track night)
November 2016 - 11th (Turkey Shoot)
February 2017 - ????? (Chilly Willy)


TUCSON SPEEDWAY

Tucson, Arizona
-
> Friday, November 25th
2:00pm - SLM Practice (2nd fastest 16.292seconds / -0.096)
3:30pm - SLM Practice (fastest at 16.154 / 0.000)
5:00pm - SLM Practice (10th fastest 16.552 / -0.523)

> Saturday, November 26th
Noon - SLM Practice (14th fastest 17.038seconds / -0.979)
1:30pm - SLM Practice(3rd fastest 16.162seconds / -0.159)
4:00pm - Qualified 7th - 15.968 / -0.307
7:00pm - Finished 11th.

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UPDATE: (Saturday, November 26th @ 9:10pm) Darrell Midgley was one of five drivers to lead the Turkey Shoot 125 at Tucson Speedway Saturday night. The Sidney, British Columbia driver briefly held down the number one spot on Lap 50. Midgley fell out of the top 10 for the first-time the entire race with 23 laps to go and settled for an 11th place finish.

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TUCSON TIME FOR TEAM NPP
TUCSON, AZ (November 26) - Darrell Midgley wrapped up his 2016 race season with an 11th place finish at Tucson Speedway Saturday night.  The Sidney, British Columbia driver was the only Canadian in the field for the 2nd annual Turkey Shoot 125 Super Late Model race.  "It was a real good race.  We brought the car home in one piece."  Earlier in the day Midgley qualified the Northern Provincial Pipelines/Alien Chassis #81 Dodge in 8th. 


MIDGLEY QUALIFIED 8TH AND FINISHED 11TH IN TUCSON

"We had the balance on the car so much better this time.  But we did use up the right front tire a little more than we wanted to.  That really hurt us in the end." Early in the race, Midgley, along with Littleton, Colorado's Kyle Ray and Davenport, Iowa's Ron Norman broke away from the field.  With Norman leading the way on Lap 46, Midgley took away the second spot from Ray.  Just four laps later, Midgley took over the race lead.  The lead for Midgley was brief however as Norman regained top spot just one lap later.  On Lap 52 Ray took back second, dropping Midgley to third.  "I just went a little too early (in this race)", admits Midgley,  "I should have held back a little longer and saved my tires."  This three-car battle then turned into a four-car tilt as Greely, Colorado's Brett Yackey began pressuring Midgley hard.  The two drivers swapped third and fourth several times over the next ten laps.  Yackey would get by Midgley for good on Lap 70.  "We were all pretty equal in the race," adds Midgley, "they were running the high side.  I was staying on the bottom."  Midgley would fall out of the top 5 on Lap 77 and then the top 10 on Lap 104.  "We lost a lot of track position near the end of the race but we learned so much here tonight.  I know we're heading in the right direction."  The race was won by 2016 Tucson Speedway track champion Brandon Schilling of Tucson, Arizona.  Midgley, the 2016 NPP Late Model Series Champion, says his race season is now over and its time for a break.  "We are back here (in Tucson) for the Chilly Willy race in February."


TUCSON, ARIZONA

TURKEY SHOOT 125
>Saturday, November 26th, 2016
1. #20 Brandon Schilling - Tucson, Arizona
2. #22 Paul Banghart - Tucson, Arizona
3. # 9 Ron Norman - Davenport, Iowa
4. #29 Keith Lopez - Tucson, Arizona
5. #12 Bruce Yackey - Greely, Colorado
6. #25 Brandon Farrington - Tucson, Arizona
7. #58 Kyle Ray - Littleton, Colorado
8. #32 Brett Yackey - Greely, Colorado
9. #21 Don Zoll Jr. - Surprise, Arizona
10.#11 Michael Egurola - Tucson, Arizona
11.#81 Darrell Midgley - Sidney, British Columbia
12.#14 Vanessa Robinson - La Cruces, New Mexico
13.#39 Brian Harrington Jr. - Tucson, Arizona
14.# 5 Trent Phillips - Hemingford, Nebraska
15.#92 Gary Clift - Henderson, Nevada
16.#51 Sean Bray - Tucson, Arizona
17.#26 Dylan Jones - Tucson, Arizona
18.#27 Jay Beasley - Las Vegas, Nevada
19.#16 Dustin Jones - Tucson, Arizona
20.#34 Rudy Vanderwall - LaSalle, Colorado
21.#88 John Lashley - Tucson, Arizona

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DECAL DETAIL
EDSON, AB (December 5) - For the past several seasons, custom made Feature win decals have been awarded to drivers of the Northern Provincial Pipelines Late Model Series.  It's a simple display of accomplishment for teams that compete in one of the toughest racing series in the province of Alberta.  This past season three different drivers went to victory lane.  Calgary, Alberta's Mark Miller opened the 2016 season with a victory at Central Alberta Raceways.  Sidney, British Columbia's Darrell Midgley, the 2016 NPP Series Champion, won big at both Castrol Raceway and Central Alberta Raceways.  Edson, Alberta's Shawn Kennedy wrapped up the 2016 season with a victory at Central Alberta Raceways.  The win for Kennedy was extra special as it was his second ever NPP Series Feature event win but the first time he's visited victory lane since the 2006 season.  Only two tracks hosted NPP Series race action in 2016. 


MARK MILLER LEADS THE PACK AT 2016 GOLD CUP IN EDMONTON

The original plan was to compete at four tracks in 2016 including a return to southern Alberta's Dinosaur Downs Speedway in Drumheller and a trip to the newly re-opened Drayton Valley Speedway.  NPP Series officials were so confident this was going to take place that Feature win decals were made up for these tracks.  Unfortunately the Alberta economy took a major turn for the worst in 2016 and the race schedule had to be scaled back.  These Feature win decals went unclaimed. 


DRAYTON VALLEY AND DRUMHELLER FEATURE WIN STICKERS

There is a glimmer of hope for the economy as NPP Series officials start schedule planning for the 2017 season.  Early discussions point to potential NPP Series events at five Alberta tracks next year.  One date that has already been placed on the tentative 2017 NPP Series schedule is Friday and Saturday July 21st and 22nd.  Castrol Raceway has announced the annual Gold Cup Sprint Car race will be held on this weekend.  The NPP Late Model has been the support class for this event since 1999.  The Gold Cup was first run in Edmonton back in 1954.

NPP LATE MODEL SERIES
2017 TENTATIVE SCHEDULE

May - ???
June - ???

Friday, July 21st - Castrol Raceway - Edmonton
Saturday, July 22nd - Castrol Raceway - Edmonton
August - ???
September - ???
October - ???

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SEASONS GREETINGS
EDSON, AB (December 24) - Race teams of the Northern Provincial Pipelines Late Model Series wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. See you in 2017!

Schedule preparations for the 2017 race season are currently underway. A tentative race schedule will be released in January.

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