TULSA, Okla. — official release — McQueen Racing will be returning to the Chili Bowl Midget Nationals at the Tulsa Exposition Center’s QuikTrip Center in Oklahoma with a three-car, all-female team Jan. 12-17, 2015.
“I am very excited to announce that McQueen Racing will once again be fielding a three car team for the 2015 Chili Bowl Midget Nationals,” said team owner and driver Shannon McQueen. “I am also very pleased that this years team will be an all female driver team. As team owner I like to give female drivers the opportunity that I had to work so hard to achieve. When I retire as a driver I would like to think that I will still own a race team and would like to give a talented female driver the opportunity.”
McQueen Racing returns to a three-car team after fielding a two-car team in the 28th annual Chili Bowl earlier this year. Joining the McQueen Racing team for the Chili Bowl will be team owner McQueen, Oklahoma’s Michelle Decker and 22-year-old Canadian racer Amber Balcaen.
Balcaen of Winnipeg, Manitoba, is a third generation racer that has been racing for more than 10 years, earning several wins in go-karts and Lightning Sprints (Mini Sprints). The 2014 season marked her maiden year in the Apex SpeedSports Eagle/Mopar Winged 410 sprint car. She’s currently campaigning the sprint car in the Midwestern United States. The Chili bowl will be her first-ever non-wing event and first career midget start.
“Racing is in my blood. I’ve been at the track since before I was born and it will always be my greatest passion,” says Balcaen.
Decker, a veteran sprint car pilot from Guthrie, Okla., currently sits third in the POWRi Western Midget Series point standings. Additionally, Decker was third in the ASCS Sooner Region points in 2011 and was the 2008 sprint car champion at Oklahoma’s State Fair Speedway. Decker was also the 2005 Super Sprint Winter Nationals champion at State Fair Speedway.
McQueen became the first woman to win a BCRA Midget championship in 2011 when she claimed the BCRA Dirt Midget crown. McQueen is also the first and only female driver to claim a USAC Western States Midget championship when she claimed the 2012 USAC Western States Midget championship, amassing four heat race wins, nine top-five runs, three fast time awards and 13 top 10s in 2012. McQueen also holds track records at Silver Dollar Speedway and Orange Show Speedway.