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King of the Midgets
1995 NAMARS Midget Champion 1996 NAMARS Midget Champion 1997 NAMARS Midget Champion
The 1990's

    1990
    Mel Kenyon's USAC Midget stats for 1990

      Starts..................12
      Feature Wins........0
      Runner Ups...........0
      3rd Place..............0
      4th Place..............0
      5th Place..............1
      6th - 10th.............6
      Failed to Qual.......0
      Season Results.....13th

    1991
    Mel Kenyon's USAC Midget stats for 1991

      Starts..................8
      Feature Wins........0
      Runner Ups...........0
      3rd Place..............0
      4th Place..............0
      5th Place..............0
      6th - 10th.............4
      Failed to Qual.......1
      Season Results.....24th


    Taken from "A Hand For the Wheel" by Jack Albinson
    Mel with his father Everett and wife Marieanne.


    Taken from Open Wheel Magazine Feb. 1993
    Mel Kenyon is overcome with emotion during IRP's "Tribute To Mel Kenyon" in August of 1991. One day prior, Marieanne suffered her near fatal bicycle injury.


    Taken from Open Wheel Magazine Feb. 1993
    Mel Kenyon kicks up some dust at Terre Haute in 1991


    Photo courtesy of www.openwheelracing.com
    Mel said after giving hints to Tony Stewart pre-race (above),
    he tried everything but couldn't get around Tony.

    1992
    Mel Kenyon's USAC Midget stats for 1992

      Starts..................11
      Feature Wins........0
      Runner Ups...........0
      3rd Place..............0
      4th Place..............2
      5th Place..............0
      6th - 10th.............4
      Failed to Qual.......1
      Season Results.....15th


    Mel "The Cowboy" Kenyon in 1992

    Mel and his brother Don have been together winning races almost forever. They are posed here with their 1992 car, which was a winner almost right out of the box. These guys have earned the respect of the entire racing community.
    Taken from Open Wheel Magazine Feb. 1993

      Mel and his brother Don have been together winning races almost forever. They are posed here with their 1992 car, which was a winner almost right out of the box. These guys have earned the respect of the entire racing community.

    1993
    Mel Kenyon's USAC Midget stats for 1993

      Starts..................11
      Feature Wins........0
      Runner Ups...........0
      3rd Place..............0
      4th Place..............0
      5th Place..............0
      6th - 10th.............7
      Failed to Qual.......0
      Season Results.....14th

    Pleasing the fans with an autograph
    Courtesy of Tom Eidemiller
    Pleasing the fans with an autograph in August 1993

    1994
    Mel Kenyon's USAC Midget stats for 1994

      Starts....................6
      Feature Wins........0
      Runner Ups...........0
      3rd Place..............0
      4th Place..............0
      5th Place..............0
      6th - 10th.............2
      Failed to Qual.......0
      Season Results.....18th

    1995
    1995 NAMARS Midget Champion

    Mel Kenyon's USAC Midget stats for 1995

      Starts....................5
      Feature Wins........0
      Runner Ups...........0
      3rd Place..............0
      4th Place..............0
      5th Place..............0
      6th - 10th.............4
      Failed to Qual.......0
      Season Results.....23rd

    October 14, 1995 - DeGraff, Ohio - Mel Kenyon clinched his first NAMARS Championship by 135 points over 3-K teammate Jim McCune. Ryan Newman is the Rookie of the year.


      Mel posing after winning the 1995 NAMARS Midget Championship at Berlin Speedway in Michigan

    1996 NAMARS Midget Champion
    1996

    1997 NAMARS Midget Champion
    1997

    May 9, 1997 - USAC Regional @ Anderson Speedway - Mel wins the feature race.

    1998

    May 18, 1998 - NAMARS Midgets @ Columbus Motor Speedway - Mel qualified 8th fastest and won his 8 lap heat race #2. In the feature at the drop of the green flag, Mark Boice shot into the lead followed by Gene Lee Gibson. While Boice was out front the legendary Mel Kenyon was moving up and jumped into second on lap 3. It took Kenyon only 2 laps to figure out a way around Boice as he swung low in turn 3 and dashed into the lead. Kenyon brought Johncox with him. Two laps later Jimmy McCune and Jim Hettinger joined Kenyon and Boice at the front as these four now ran in tight nose to tail formation. Every one was looking to move up and trying high and low. Nick Fornoro joined these four and Chris Hayes on lap 16 as six cars battled. The front six were now encountering heavy lapped traffic and the veteran Kenyon used this opportunity to lengthen his lead over Johncox. The entire complexion of the race changed when Jim Hettinger and Chris Hayes got tangled up with lapped traffic in turn 4. Hettinger spun to the outside and stopped just short of the wall and Hayes spun to the infield and kept going. This was the only caution of the race. When the green flag flew Johncox took advantage, ducked inside of Mel Kenyon in turn three, and surprised everyone at the speedway. Kenyon had looked like he had the race won but this lead change surprised everyone. Johncox was out front closely followed but Kenyon. Speculation was Kenyon would wait for one last shot at Johncox at the end but with 2 laps to go Kenyon slowed with engine failure and coasted to a stop in the pits. This was the second straight week Kenyon has dropped out of a feature with mechanical problems. Kenyon's demise caused a mad scramble behind Johncox and at the checkered; it was Ronnie Johncox the winner followed by Jimmy McCune, Mark Boice, Nick Fornoro and A.J. Davis rounding out the top 5.

    June 21, 1998 - NAMARS Auto Value midget series @ South Bend Motor Speedway - Mel Kenyon had mechanical problems early and didn't get to qualify. Don and Mel got things straightened out and Mel finished second in the third heat. Starting dead last in the feature Mel put on a terrific show as he charged through the field and placed fifth at the checkered flag.

    July 28, 1998 - NAMARS Auto Value midget series @ South Bend Motor Speedway - Mel Kenyon set fast time with a lap of 11.738 seconds and won the first heat race. Mel finished in 5th as Rookie A.J. Fike won the feature.

    September 2, 1998 - USAC Midget Hall of Fame Induction @ Terre Haute, Indiana - Don Kenyon, brother of USAC's 7-time National Midget Champion Mel Kenyon, has been involved in nine USAC Car Owner titles and has fielded cars for most of his brother's 111 USAC National feature victories. His 92 feature wins rank second only to the 98 amassed by the late Doug Caruthers. He won four consecutive USAC owner's titles from 1965 to 1968 and added titles in 1974, 1979-80-81 and 1985. In 1987 he was presented the "Jim Blunk Memorial Award" at the USAC National Awards Dinner for his many contributions to auto racing and served as a member of the USAC Advisory Board for many years.


    A full-sized limestone carving of one of Mel's midget.
    The carving was located at a racing museum in Bedford, IN.
    It's current location is unknown.

    Photo courtesy of Paul Johnson


With God You're Always A Winner!
1964 USAC National Midget Champion 1967 USAC National Midget Champion 1968 USAC National Midget Champion 1974 USAC National Midget Champion 1977 USAC National Midget Champion 1981 USAC National Midget Champion 1985 USAC National Midget Champion 1995 NAMARS Midget Champion 1996 NAMARS Midget Champion 1997 NAMARS Midget Champion

#61 - Mel Kenyon: King of the Midgets
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