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VRA - Niemela Produces First Heat Win After Returning To The US


Santa Barbara, Sept 13, 2011: The Markus Niemela Experience returned from its Summer hiatus last Saturday night, where Markus immediately produced a VRA Pro Sprint heat win, in addition to picking up the winning heat's fastest lap.

"I started second, then got the lead on the first lap, despite a bad start, and after getting around Kyle Smith at turn two. The Steve Watt Enterprises/Maxwell Industries car was so good after that, that I was able to generate a good gap and I was able to back off and cruise to the win."

Unfortunately, with the inverted grid, Niemala ended up seventh for the Main, and being mired in the middle of the field, the change ended up costing him another podium finish.

"The grid invert placed me seventh (out of a field of 20). As usual, the Steve Watt Enterprises/Maxwell Industries car was really good. However, the whole race was pretty crazy, and I ended up getting caught in up in two accidents that pushed me back a bit. Nonetheless, I was coming back to the front again and had made it to fourth, until with three laps to go, a lapped car crashed with the car I was racing with. The shunt took both of us out. I managed to restart and made up a few positions, but in the end was only able to finish eighth. We should have done better as the car was mad fast."

Next up, Markus will run the SWE/Maxwell Industries Midget car this weekend, so stay tuned.

PHOTO (select to view enlarged photo)