Logan Jewell wants to sparkle for Prince George auto racing fans.
The 22-year-old local stock car driver will be screaming around the PGARA oval tonight in the ARCA OK Tire Sportsman Series White Spruce Enterprises 100. The ARCA show is the biggest event of the year at the track and Jewell has been preparing for it ever since he took the checkered flag in his most recent ARCA outing, May 26 in Williams Lake.
"There's nothing I want more than to win in my hometown," said Jewell, who pilots the No. 92 car, a 2012 Impala SS powered by a Chevy 604 crate engine. "Especially to get two wins in a row, that would be a feat. Our series is so close so it's very hard to do but we're doing what we can and we're hoping to bring home another one."
Time trials start at 6 p.m. and the green flag will drop for racing at 7 p.m. In case of wet weather, Sunday has been set aside as a rain date.
This is the third event on the 2012 ARCA calendar. The season-opening race was May 12 in Vernon and was won by Ian Graham.
Heading into tonight's race, Jewell sits fourth in the season points standings with 143. He trails leader and defending champion Mark Berriau of Penticton (167), Graham (153) and Ryley Seibert (151). Jewell is intent on making up ground and, to do that, needs to make a pile of smart decisions behind the wheel.
"Keeping your nose clean on this track is a big thing," he said. "If you can run up front and not burn up your equipment you'll be there at the end of the race and that's what our goal is -- be there at the end and give them a good run for their money."
When ARCA stopped at PGARA last year, Jewell was the race leader for the first 37 laps and made a late charge at the eventual winner, Berriau. Entering the final corner on the last lap, Jewell -- in second place -- tried to pass Berriau on the outside but drifted too high and lost his chance. In the process, he was passed by Chris Babcock and Bob Mear and ended up fourth.
"I'd rather get fourth going for the win than run second for the entire race," he told The Citizen that night.
In the 2011 points standings, Jewell finished tied for 11th with Mear, a former Prince George resident.
In Jewell's victory in Williams Lake earlier this season, he had the lead coming out of a late caution and held off Berriau for the victory -- no easy task, to be sure.
"He's always fast and always on the ball," Jewell said. "He's really smart and always right there when you make a mistake -- he's always just waiting."
PGARA's Admiral Roofing mini stocks and Richmond Steel street stocks will also be spinning their wheels tonight. As well, the association will be celebrating its 60th anniversary season during a post-race barbecue and bonfire in the pit area.
Tickets will be available at the gate.
PGARA is located on Highway 16 east, just minutes from downtown.