It’s the finale of all finales. Mesa Marin Raceway in Bakersfield will close up for good this weekend with a 2005 season finale in the track’s traditional October Classic. Scott Lynch, the 2003 West champion from Las Vegas, leads 2004 champion Mike Duncan by 41 points. Lynch won the spring race, but it is Duncan’s home track. “We’re going to try to win the pole, lead every lap we can and win the race,’ Lynch said. “One thing I do not want to do is change our game plan for the last race. We’ve been fairly good and lucky this year. We’re going to go out there and do the best job we can.’ Steve Portenga is still in contention. He would have to gain 54 points on Lynch and 13 points on Duncan, however. Four drivers are slated to make their series debut at Bakersfield, including Irwindale regular Justin Lofton. The Southwest series will race for the 64th time on the track. Former series standouts Kevin Harvick, Kurt Busch, Matt Crafton, Ron Hornaday Jr. and Rick Carelli all won series races on the track before moving on to NASCAR’s top three series. NASCAR’s Southwest and West series will compete on Saturday. It will be the season finale for the West with the top finishers in each division heading for Irwindale Speedway for the Nov. 11-12 Toyota All-Star Showdown. The Southwest series closes out the season in Phoenix. The 28-year-old half-mile oval will then close for good, owner Larry Collins blaming encroaching housing, which has made the land too valuable to keep as a race track. “My family can’t express enough gratitude to our sponsors, the competitors, the race fans and our community for the pleasure of hosting such a great event for 28 years,’ Collin said. Jim Pettit II holds a 45-point lead over 2003 series champion Auggie Vidovich. Former Irwindale Super Late Model champions Greg Voigt, Greg Pursley and Rip Michels are in the Top 10. Former Irwindale Race Training Center lead instructor Wally Pankratz will be feted at “Wally Pankratz Night’ on Saturday night at the Ventura Raceway. Pankratz is nearing his 500th start in the Western States Midgets series. The Orange resident won the 2000 series title and has been a stalwart in the division since 1983. Pankratz ranks 12th in the current standings and his best finishes in seven 2005 series starts have been fourth-places in two races at Ventura. He has won 19 races. His last win came in October of 2002 at Perris. Keith Lair can be reached at (626) 962-8811, Ext. 2272, or by e-mail at [email protected] 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
TORONTO – Jagmeet Singh is stepping down as deputy leader of the Ontario NDP while he runs for the federal party’s leadership, but he’s not resigning his seat in the provincial legislature.Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath’s office says in a statement today that she and Singh agreed that during his leadership run he’ll leave his post as second-in-command.While he’s running, his critic posts of government and consumer services, attorney general and anti-racism directorate will be split among caucus colleagues.After launching his leadership campaign Monday night, Singh said he would keep his Bramalea-Gore-Malton seat because he has had busy schedules before and has still been able to help his constituents.The Ontario legislature rises for the summer June 1 and returns in September, which is also when online voting starts for the federal leadership.Singh says he will later roll out a policy platform, but lists the major issues facing Canada as inequality, climate change, indigenous reconciliation and electoral reform.
OTTAWA — China’s move to stop buying several Canadian agricultural products has punished some farmers, and now industry leaders are worrying about the prospect of a broader threat — an eventual U.S.-China trade deal.Canadian exports of beef, pork, canola and soybeans have largely been locked out of the massive Chinese market following the December arrest of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou in Vancouver.At the same time, a handful of Canadian crops have had stronger sales to China over the past year, such as Canadian wheat, thanks to trade-related tariffs imposed by the U.S.Canadian Agri-food Trade Alliance president Brian Innes says Canada may see indirect benefits from the trade war in the short term — but he worries a deal down the road could have a negative impact on farm exports to China.Innes says President Donald Trump has been clear that any trade deal must include China agreeing to make major agricultural purchases from the U.S.He says Canadian exporters would like to see the government push for the removal of non-tariff barriers in other foreign markets — such as those in Europe and the Pacific Rim — because they have prevented farmers from fully benefiting from multilateral trade deals.At the moment, there are few signs of progress in the U.S.-China trade talks, but negotiators are expected to meet next month.The Canadian Press
Advertisement Advertisement Borg/McEnroe, starring Shia LaBeouf and Sverrir Gudnason, will have its world premiere as the opening film of the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival. (Nordisk Film) Twitter LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Facebook “The story of this nail-biter matchup changed the sport of tennis forever, and the outstanding performances from LaBeouf and Gudnason will be a spectacular way for Festival-goers to kick things off,” TIFF director and CEO Piers Handling said in a statement.Danish director Metz, whose 2010 Afghan war documentary Armadillo earned the Critics Week Grand Prize at the Cannes Film Festival, “brings that same tension to Borg/McEnroe,” added TIFF artistic director Cameron Bailey.“The on-court scenes have the dynamism of a street battle, and the drama peels back layers from what we know about both players. This was more than a simple conflict pitting an icy European against an impulsive American. Audiences are in for one hell of a showdown.”Handling and Bailey unveiled a first batch of films slated for this year’s festival last week. Upcoming announcements will highlight Canadian selections and additional titles earmarked for the festival this fall.The 2017 Toronto International Film Festival runs September 7-17. A film revisiting an epic professional sports rivalry — between brash American star John McEnroe and Swedish legend Bjorn Borg — will kick off this year’s Toronto International Film Festival.TIFF Festival organizers announced Borg/McEnroe, directed by Janus Metz, as the opening film of this year’s edition.The film stars Shia LaBeouf, Sverrir Gudnason and Stellan Skarsgard. Login/Register With: Advertisement