Evans edges Lewis for NW Series points title

  • JOHN SLEEPER / Herald writer
  • Wednesday, September 27, 2000 9:00pm
  • Sports

By JOHN SLEEPER

Herald writer

Garrett Evans’ only victory of the 2000 season was the one he truly needed.

Evans, of Ardenvoir, took his first NASCAR Northwest Series victory of the season, the Frank’s Chevrolet 125 in Yakima, and nailed down the series championship.

Evans nipped Gary Lewis of Bothell by less than a second and beat Lewis for the championship by one point.

In winning his fourth Northwest Series title, Evans finished with 2,583 points to Lewis’ 2,582. Lewis, who was 136 points off the pace as late as Aug. 5, won four straight races up to the finale and found himself in the points lead going into Saturday.

“We won a lot of races at the end of the year,” Lewis said. “So we’re telling ourselves that it was a great accomplishment for us to even get back up in the points lead.”

Lewis passed Yakima’s Chris Hart for the lead on lap 72 and held it for more than 40 laps. But Lewis’ right-front tire was gradually losing pressure after having run over some debris. Evans squeezed under Lewis on lap 113, and Lewis had little hope of catching him.

A late-race caution bunched the field together for a green, white and checkered-flag finish, but Lewis was unable to catch Evans at the end. Evans won by .99 of a second.

Lewis’ right-front tire had just 11 pounds of pressure at the end of the race.

“I’d really like to congratulate Gary Lewis for one of the finest seasons I’ve ever seen by anybody on the Northwest Tour,” Evans said. “I feel he is the champion. My crew did the best job of making sure my car finished all of the laps. My crew won the championship for me this year.”

Former Marysville driver John Zaretzke, now of Yakima, was third in the race, followed by Tacoma’s Ron Eaton. Everett driver Joe Constance was seventh.

In the standings, Ken Kaltschmidt of Marion, Montana was third (2,534), Hart was fourth (2,394) and Kevin Hamlin of Stanwood was fifth (2,350).

Following Hamlin was Everett rookie Gaylon Stewart (2,319). Matt Kelley of Kirkland was ninth (2,129) and Zaretzke was 10th (2,038).

  • Evergreen Speedway: James Duvall Jr., and Lex Johnson were crowned champions of the mini stock and bomber divisions, respectively, as the season ended Saturday night.

    Johnson also won the NASCAR Great West Region title, with 17 starts, four wins, 14 top fives and 16 top 10s.

    Other champions are Steve Cox in the Figure Eights and Guy Litts in the Extreme Contact Figure Eights.

    Saturday is the Giant Demolition Derby and Fireworks Show, along with school bus figure eights, three-car trains, the World Championship Rollover Contest and women’s figure eights. Gates open at 3:30 p.m. Racing begins at 7 p.m.

  • Northern Sprint Tour: Shawna Wilskey of Lake Stevens won her second NST title Saturday night with a seventh-place finish in the season’s finale at Yakima.

    Rick Fauver of Everett, the defending series champion, won the 50-lap main event Saturday night and finished second in the points chase.

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