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Karter Sarff Opens April with Xtreme Outlaw Midget Win at US 36

Toyota Racing Development reaches 500-win mark with national Midget engines
Joe Grabianowski Photo

Twice a winner with the Xtreme Outlaw Midget Series presented by Toyota last year, Karter Sarff has stepped up his game early in 2024, taking his first trip of the season to Victory Lane Friday night at US 36 Raceway.

Sarff, 21, of Mason City, IL, was relentless with the speed and pressure on the leaders through the first half of the main event, eventually breaking through with a successful slide job on Cannon McIntosh with 10-to-go and driving away with his third career Series victory.

In 2023, it took he and his family-owned operation several appearances with the Series before he finally broke through for a win during the World of Outlaws Ironman 55 weekend in August. Now, only three races into the new season, Sarff is already up on the board.

“It feels super good to win one in the third race of the year,” Sarff said. “Hopefully, it leads to even more this year. Last year, we won two of them, so this year we’re hoping we can win even more than two.”

Notably, Sarff utilizes a Toyota Racing Development (TRD) engine under the hood of his No. 21K. Coming into Friday, the TRD program was sitting at a grand total of 499 national Midget series Feature wins with their engines – the first coming in 2006 on pavement with multi-time national champion Dave Steele – and Sarff has now delivered the milestone 500th to the program with the win.

After turning the quickest lap in his Qualifying group, winning his Heat Race and claiming high-points honors, Sarff took the green flag for the Feature from outside Row 2 and immediately put the pressure on early leader McIntosh, hounding the Keith Kunz Motorsports #71K nearly non-stop over the first half of the 30-lap race.

Sarff (21K) and McIntosh (71K) in a battle for the lead. // Joe Grabianowski Photo

Inside and outside, Sarff tried several routes to make the pass but was unable to do so. That was until Lap 17 – five laps after a restart – when Sarff finally got close enough to execute his first slide job maneuver in Turn 3, which McIntosh immediately denied with a crossover move out of Turn 4.

“[McIntosh] was running the bottom in (Turns) 1 and 2, so I couldn’t slide him there, which was the best spot to do it,” Sarff said. “So was sliding him there in 3 and 4, and it just got so tight off of 4 that he was able to run down the hill back across me every time.”

But Sarff gathered his wheels back in and wound the car up on the top lane again in preparation to throw another slider two laps later, which was successful. With a burst of speed off Turn 2, Sarff drove deep into Turn 3 on the bottom and slid ahead of McIntosh by several car-lengths to take over the lead.

“We struggled a little on the bottom – it was a little boggy – so right through the middle and the top, the thing would just carry so much speed,” Sarff said. “It was just an amazing racecar.”

Despite Sarff’s repeated challenges, the move was much to McIntosh’s surprise.

“I felt like after the restart, I was really good,” McIntosh said. “I changed my line up, just started doing something different, and I felt like it was a lot better and I was carrying good speed. I was honestly surprised when I saw Karter poke his nose to the inside because I felt so good.

“At that point, I was trying to just play defense, and once he got by, I really didn’t have anything for him.”

Now with the lead, Sarff began to drive away from the field, turning laps multiple tenths quicker on average than those behind him as he cruised to a first Feature win of the year.

(from left) McDermand, Sarff and McIntosh in Victory Lane // Joe Grabianowski Photo

Behind him, Chase McDermand was making his presence felt as well, capitalizing on the lower-lane momentum around the 3/8-mile high-banks to get by McIntosh for second on Lap 26.

“I was trying to figure out [McIntosh’s] weakness and where I could gain on him a little bit,” McDermand said. “Just making different lines, trying to make speed down the straightaway.

“I was able to get him in (Turns) 3 and 4, which was kind of where I was thinking. I feel like we were close to the same pace in 1 and 2, but I just chose a different line there in 3 and 4 and was able to get a really good run off the corner. He kinda slipped-up there off of 4 and didn’t quite have the run down the straightaway that I had.”

McDermand held on for second while McIntosh settled for third with 19 total laps led. Still, McIntosh built on his points lead slightly, now tallying in 16 points ahead of runner-up Zach Daum.


The Xtreme Outlaw Midgets complete the trip through Missouri with a visit to Sweet Springs Motorsports Complex on Saturday, April 6. Tickets are on sale in advance at and will also available at the gate. If you can’t be there, stream every lap live on DIRTVision.

ABBREVIATED RESULTS (view full results)

Feature (30 Laps): 1. 21K-Karter Sarff[4]; 2. 40-Chase McDermand[5]; 3. 71K-Cannon McIntosh[2]; 4. 25K-Taylor Reimer[8]; 5. 67-Ryan Timms[10]; 6. 7U-Zach Daum[1]; 7. 97-Kale Drake[3]; 8. 19AZ-Hayden Reinbold[9]; 9. 14S-Tyler Smith[11]; 10. 19M-Ethan Mitchell[6]; 11. 67K-Ashton Torgerson[7]; 12. 1K-Brayton Lynch[14]; 13. 5U-Peter Smith[17]; 14. 55-Trevor Cline[22]; 15. 88A-Austin Torgerson[13]; 16. 98-Luke Drotschie[16]; 17. 66-Jayden Clay[21]; 18. 938-Bradley Fezard[20]; 19. 89-Todd McVay[19]; 20. 92-Josh Most[18]; 21. 44-Branigan Roark[15]; 22. 13-Elijah Gile[12]; 23. 56-Tyler Edwards[23]