Spokane, WA – The Northwest Super Late Model Series is headed to the Wenatchee Valley Super-Oval (WA) on Saturday April 22nd, for the “Leonard Evans Memorial 150”. This will be the eighth annual event in the name of the Evans family’s patriarch. $5,000 will go to the winner of this year’s edition, as Round #2 of the series nine event 2023 schedule takes to the track.
The event has attracted a pre-entry list of 21 drivers and is expected to be an extremely competitive event, with series champions, track champions and race winners throughout the field. Multiple previous winners of the event are also ready to take on the popular ¼-mile oval in Central Washington. The race will pay tribute to Leonard Evans, the father of four-time NASCAR Northwest Tour Series and Northwest Super Late Model Series Champion Garrett Evans and grandfather to 2017 championship runner-up Jan Evans.
2022 found Evan Goetz in Victory Circle, becoming the youngest winner in series history. He was followed by Taylor Riddle, Max Schroeder, Mike Longton, and Kaiden Anderson. Previous winners of the “150” include Tayler Riddle (2015, 2018), Shelby Thompson (2016), Shane Mitchell (2017), Gracin Raz (2019), Haeden Plybon (2021), and Goetz (2022).
NWSLMS winners that are entered in this weekend’s event include Garrett Evans, Max Schroeder, Evan Goetz, Haeden Plybon, Doni Wanat, and Alan Cress. In addition, other touring series Late Model winners include Terry Halverson, Andy Beaman, John Newhouse, Jason O’Neil, Wyatt King, and Dave Garber.
Jan Evans will be a fine representative of the family’s name in this year’s event. Evans was the 2017 series championship runner-up. He has nine starts in the NWSLMS at Wenatchee, but only three in the “Leonard Evans Memorial”. His best finish of those was seventh, while earning a best of second in the September “Neal Newberry 125”. With WVSO being his hometrack, along with his grandfather’s, Jan has many special memories of their relationship together at the ¼-mile oval.
“The memory of my grandpa that I have, as it relates to WVSO, was when I used to come up from the pits when I was racing and say “hi” to him in his van. He had MS (Multiple Sclerosis), so it was difficult for him to come down and see the race. Occasionally, he would ride down on his mobility scooter to say “hi” to the team. Even though his condition was tough, he never let it dampen his love for life, and his passion for the automobile.”
With the race honoring his grandfather, it would be special for the younger Evans to pull off the victory and bring the winner’s trophy back to the family’s business.
“With the NWSLMS, and the race being the “Leonard Evans 150”, I want to win this race in honor of my grandpa and the Evans family legacy. I also want to bring the trophy home to Leonard Evans Used Car Superstore, where it belongs!”
John Newhouse is a Super Late Model Track champion at Meridian Speedway. He has touring series championships in the Rocky Mountain Challenge Series and the Northwest Tour Truck Series. Newhouse has become a regular at the Wenatchee Valley Super-Oval NWSLMS finale, “Neal Newberry 125”. But this will be his first attempt at the “Leonard Evans 150” after winning the Pro Late Model portion of the event a year ago. He will now attempt to win both.
“I'm just really excited to go to Wenatchee”, Newhouse exclaimed. “We love that track. We hold the track record in the Pro Late Model and hope we can do it again. Last year we won so maybe we can make it to Wayne's Friday night (in the Pro Late Model) and Saturday night (in the Super Late Model). Last year we did not get to race in the Northwest Tour because I had a trip planned to Mexico, and it was a Sunday race. So, this year works out perfect.”
2022 “Leonard Evans Memorial” winner Evan Goetz will be back to defend his title. Goetz became the youngest driver to ever win a NWSLMS race at that event, and he was one of seven winners in seven 2022 races. He feels good about being the defending race champion, but he will enter Saturday’s event with cautious optimism.
“It feels pretty good to be able to say I won that race, and I’m coming into this next race humble and ready for anything that gets thrown at me,” Goetz commented.
Surprisingly, one of the previous winners is not Garrett Evans. Garrett finished last year’s event 18th. He finished second in the inaugural event, as well as in 2016. His other three starts saw fourth, fifth, and eighth-place results. The Northwest racing legend would love nothing more than to win this weekend’s event and hear his father tell him “We did it, Stanford!!”
Kole Raz will be one to keep an eye on after winning the “South Sound 200” last August at South Sound Speedway (WA). He is coming off a second at the “Chilly Willy 150” at Tucson Speedway (AZ), and he followed it up with a second in the Spears SRL Southwest Tour Series “Wild West Shootout 127” last weekend. With his brother’s prowess at Wenatchee, winning three times in the NWSLMS, and Kole’s success at the track, he hopes to continue the momentum and bring home a win.
"We have a great amount of momentum going right now, but I also think our Port City Jefferson Racing #27 is always the one to beat at Wenatchee", Raz admitted. "My brother has had a lot of success there over the years. I think we have improved on a lot since his last run there as well, and it's a track that has suited both of our driving styles. Although I haven't run there much, I've been very comfortable around WVSO. I've been working hard getting the car ready after Tucson last weekend. It's going to be a long week and we hope it's all worth it come Saturday night! I'm ready to be back in the Pacific Northwest."
This weekend’s event at the Wenatchee Valley Super-Oval will be a two-day event, with the Pro Late Models taking center stage on Friday in the $4,000-to-win “Spring Sizzle 100”. They will be joined by the Focas Midgets, and Bandoleros. The NWSLMS will have three practice sessions on Friday. Fan Gates open at 4:30 PM
Saturday will see Fan Gates opening at 3:30 PM. Group Qualifying for the Bandoleros and Focas Midgets is scheduled for 3:45 PM. Single Car Qualifying for the Legends and Super Late Models follow. Opening Ceremonies are set for 5:00 PM. Trophy Heats for the Bandoleros and Focas Midgets will be followed by “B”-Mains for the Legends and Super Late Models as needed. Main Events are scheduled to begin at 6:00 PM, beginning with the Bandoleros (20 Laps), Focas Midgets (25 Laps), Northwest Legends Nationals (40 Laps), and the “Leonard Evans Memorial 150” for the Northwest Super Late Model Series.
For those unable to attend the event, it will be shown LIVE on Racing America with a paid subscription to the service at www.RacingAmerica.TV.
Pre-Entries (as of 4/19/2023)
1K Kasey Klein Quincy, WA
2 Terry Halverson Wenatchee, WA
3 Andy Beaman Selah, WA
3G Wyatt Gardner Lake Stevens WA
3K Ken Bonney Hermiston, OR
5 Jan Evans East Wenatchee, WA
7 Zach Riehl Corbett, OR
13 Matt Doyle Wenatchee, WA
17s Max Schroeder Tacoma, WA
17 Robert Presley Olympia, WA
22 Evan Goetz Okanogan, WA
26 John Newhouse Twin Falls, ID
27 Kole Raz Lake Oswego, OR
29 Jason O'Neil Spokane, WA
33 Christopher Kalsch Hillsboro, OR
55 Haeden Plybon Spokane, WA
64 Garrett Evans, E. Wenatchee, WA
80 Wyatt King Boise, ID
89 Doni Wanat Woodinville, WA
91 Alan Cress Stayton, OR
93 Dave Garber Spokane, WA
-Northwest Super Late Model Series Release