KELSEYVILLE, California — Michael Snider, age 17, won his first Bay Cities Racing Association Midget Saturday night at Madera Speedway, during the 9th Annual “Gehardt Classic” 100 Lapper event.
"Snider is the first BCRA Midget to win the “Gerhardt Classic”, which has been won in the past by a USAC Contender. "
Snider qualified 6th over all during the combined event between BCRA and USAC, placing him on the pole starting position of the 21 car field. Due to the high number of cars officials made the decision to start the race three rows wide. Falling from first to fourth early in the race quickly changed as the race leader blew his motor collecting several cars along the way, leaving Snider once again in the lead on the restart. Racing hard for 74 caution free laps became a challenge as Snider fell to third but keeping steady. On lap 93 former Indy Car driver Davey Hamilton lost a tire sending him into the turn two wall and bringing out a caution. With only 7 laps remaining Snider found his luck as race leader Nick Chivello bogged the engine on the restart giving Snider his opportunity to take over the lead. Hitting his marks lap after lap Snider was able to continue his lead and take the checkered flag in first place.
Snider is the first BCRA Midget to win the “Gerhardt Classic”, which has been won in the past by a USAC Contender. He also broke the BCRA track record with a qualifying lap of 13.860 seconds. Going into Saturday night’s race Snider was 10 points out of the first place championship points position. After his win and highest BCRA qualifying time Snider is now the new point’s leader for BCRA Asphalt Midgets. With three races remaining Madera, Ukiah and Lakeport Speedways, Snider has a chance at becoming the youngest BCRA Champion in history.
Snider, a third generation driver, has more than proven his racing abilities and carrying the Snider name to victory lane. Starting his racing career in an Outlaw Go-Kart at the young age of 6, Snider has several championship wins and “Rookie of the Year” awards under his belt. Snider has raced numerous divisions at Lakeport and Ukiah Speedway since he was able to reach the pedals, gaining his first asphalt championship at age 14 in his Street Stock during the Lakeport/Ukiah Speedway’s King of the Hill Challenge Series in 2009. He continued by moving up to open-wheeled Modifieds in 2010 and winning “Rookie of the Year” amongst veteran drivers such as Bob Strauss and Terry McIntire. Snider then moved on the BCRA Midgets in 2011 capturing the “Johnny Boyd Rookie of the Year”.
The Snider racing family has overcome many obstacles thus far during the 2012 race season and would like to thank all their major sponsors S&K Automotive, Hillside Honda, Coleman’s Customs, Mac Tools and Ciandro Construction. Along with their sponsors the dreams of this young racer would not be possible without the support of his family, friends and pit crew members. Snider returns to Madera Speedway on September 15th for the Harvest Classic where he hopes to bring home another checkered finish.