Thursday, May 24, 2018

Southern Oregon Speedway, Siskiyou Motor Speedway, Coos Bay Speedway Previews, More




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Focus Midgets, Sprint Cars Headline 
Open Wheel Showcase Saturday Night

White City, Oregon...Southern Oregon Speedway has an exciting night of open-wheel racing on tap for this Saturday night. It is the Open Wheel Showcase, and the Northwest Focus Midgets will be coming down from Washington with a strong field of competitors. Also on the card will be the Kendall Oil Winged Sprint Cars, Southern Oregon Dwarf Cars and OTRO Hardtops.

The biggest and most competitive field of Focus Midgets on the West Coast can be found competing in the Pacific Northwest. On any given weekend, you'll usually find the drivers racing at Grays Harbor, Deming or Skagit Speedways in Washington. They have also put together the Summer Series, which takes the group to six different tracks for a 10 race schedule. In addition to the three aforementioned venues, the Summer Series also visits Sunset Speedway, Silver Dollar Speedway in Chico, California and Southern Oregon Speedway.

Southern Oregon Speedway was voted the most popular track of the NW Focus Midget drivers last season. They brought 22 cars to the show and ran a race that didn't have a yellow flag until late. The racing was intense at the front of the pack as the leaders battled through slower traffic. It was 2017 Series champion Tristan Thomas picking up the win ahead of Michael Vollbrecht and Chance Crum. Crum ended up second in the standings last year ahead of 2016 champion Nick Evans.

The Focus Midgets are running a Salute To Indy this weekend, complete with a three-wide salute to the fans and a jug of milk to the winner, as is Indy tradition. All about Metal of Medford and Winningham Racing has come on board to sponsor the Big Show. Series officials report that 30 competitors are committed to coming to the speedway, and this includes such noteworthy competitors as Grays Harbor Speedway champion Garrett Thomas, Top 5 ranked Ryan Cully Jonathan Jorgenson, recent Grays Harbor winner Evan Margeson, Nik Larson, Guy Tow, Hannah Lindquist, Glenn Bittrolf and recent Kern Raceway winner Ariel Biggs.

As if watching 30 of these fast Wingless Midget race cars flying around the Jim Rodgers prepared 3/10 mile clay oval isn't enough, the track's Kendall Oil Winged Sprint Car Series will be competing as well. In fact, Ryan Cully and Eric Turner are bringing cars for this division as well as their Focus Midgets.

The last time out, David Hibbard scored an impressive Main Event victory, leaving the battle for second. Hibbard was spotted recently in Cottage Grove picking up another second place finish. He comes into the event as the driver to beat. Enrique Jaime enjoyed his best finish to date last time as the second-year competitor finished third, followed by Jeffrey Hudson.

With some support from Hays Oil and Dave's Carpet & Vinyl, track management has made its strongest commitment ever to building up a Sprint Car class. The roster boasts some talented young drivers with a half dozen of them still in their teens, including Hudson, Jaime, last year's top rookie Merissa Henson, Tanner Holmes, Bailey Hibbard and Theron Smith. All but Holmes are anticipated this week along with Camden Robustelli, Blaine Cory, Aaron Miller and the season debut of reigning track champion Kyler Barraza.

With roughly 50 cars anticipated between the top two classes, having the Southern Oregon Dwarf Car Association on the roster is icing on the cake. Last week, two-time series champion Josh King drove the Jerry Hauck car to what would be a $1,000 victory thanks to the sponsorship of Jim Nelson. To get the win, he had to battle fiercely with 2017 point runner-up Chad Cardoza, who settled for second. These two may be at the head of the pack, but they can anticipate some stiff competition from two-time reigning champion Brock Peters, Cody Peters, Randy Slater, Camden Robustelli and Kalvin Morton, among others.

The Old Time Racers of Oregon will be bringing their V6 powered Coupe and Sedan Hardtops to the speedway. These cars are a flashback to what was the main show at venues throughout the United States in the 1950s and 1960s. Recently, Jamie Britton picked up a win at Cottage Grove Speedway ahead of Mark Minter. Minter won the race on Open Wheel Showcase night last season. The Minter family is part of the foundation that formed the group in the 1980s. Other drivers to watch for this week include Bill Trotter, Dusty Trotter, Jeff Krossman and Jimmy Del Castille.

The Open Wheel showcase is sure to be an event that you won't want to miss as a roster into the seventies is anticipated between the four scheduled classes. Gates open at 5 p.m. with the first race at 7 p.m. General Admission is $15 with Seniors, Veterans and Juniors (6 to 12) $10. Children 5 and under are free. For further information, go to www.southernoregonspeedway.com.


Northwest Focus Midget Roster Of Committed Drivers
00 Alden Ostrom
2a Renee Angel
2j Jonathan Jorgenson
3h Hannah Lindquist
04 Matt Loving
5 AJ fugitt
7s Ross Rankine
9s Sawyer Lind
9t Tristin Thomas
11 Evan Margeson
11t Ray Stebbins
11r Aerial Biggs
12 Jesse Conway
14 Garrett Thomas
16 Nik Larson
17 Chris Bullock
18 Breanna Brostrom
21j Ryan Cully
24 Nick Evans
29t Eric Turner
31 Shane Biles
41 Ashley Thompson
44 Shane Smith
46 Guy Tow Sr
73 Keoni Texeira
75l Chris Greene
82 Greg Thornhill
88 Riley Vaillant
92 Katie Jackson
98 Glenn Bittrolf


2017 Northwest Focus Midget
Top Ten:
9t Tristin Thomas 383
83c Chance Crum 362
24 Nick Evans 354
2J Jonathan Jorgenson 349
21J Ryan Cully 339
4 Michael Vollbrecht 338
N8 Nate Vaughn 329
3h Hannah Lindquist 314
14 Garrett Thomas 292
11 Evan Margeson 249



Siskiyou Speedway Honors Past Greats 
On Memorial Day Weekend

Yreka, CA...Memorial Day weekend is a special time of year for the racing community at Siskiyou Motor Speedway. It's not just about the extra money being offered for the three division program that will be held on Saturday and Sunday nights. It's about the drivers being remembered. The Sunday specials are the John Arneberg Memorial for IMCA Modifieds, Bo Hittson Memorial for IMCA Sport Modifieds and Mike Cavaye Memorial for the Mini Stocks.

John Arnberg was one of the top drivers in the Northern California and Southern Oregon area and a champion racer. When he died in a tragic boating accident, the track began honoring him with the John Arnberg Memorial race. It has not been an easy race for the drivers to win. The record will show that in 14 races, only Jon DeBenedetti and Travis Peery are repeat winners. In fact, nobody has repeated in the last nine years.

Last season, Nick Trenchard came to town and dominated with the preliminary Main Event win and the big win in the Arnberg race on Sunday. Trenchard used his success that weekend to help him earn the track championship. He is one of the drivers anticipated for this race along with 2016 winner Ryan McDaniel. Race winners Mark Wauge (2015) and Dave Duste Jr (2013) are currently active at Southern Oregon Speedway.

The track announced last week that the win will pay $1,038. The 38 is a reference to the car number of Arnberg and is also the lap total. $750 will go to the second place driver, and the third place finisher will receive $500 among the prize money being offered. That kind of money is sure to bring a few top-notch competitors to town. Some of the racers anticipated include Zach Fettinger, Jeremy Ohlde, two-time champion Albert Gill, Duane Orsburn, James Welshonse and Bo Shields. This is also the second point event, and the track has scheduled the minimum four races required for it to become an official championship.

Not to be left out of the loop, the IMCA Sport Modifieds will run for $750 to win and $500 for second in the annual Bo Hittson Memorial 35 lap Main Event on Sunday. Bo was a popular racer at the speedway in the 1970s and a police officer who was killed in the line of duty. In recent seasons, the star of this race has been two time Southern Oregon Speedway champion Jorddon Braaten. Jorddon has won three of the last four races, including his dominant performance last season. He also won the race back in 2011 when it was a Street Stock show.

One driver with his eyes on the big prize is current point leader Rich McCoy. McCoy has won his share of races across three different divisions at Southern Oregon Speedway, and it would be crazy to think that he won't get a win at some point. This might be his night to shine. Some of the top drivers in the area to watch include 2016 champion Jimmy Lipke, feature winner Justin Foux, recent Medford winner David Marble, Joby Shields and Ryder Boswell. The Sanders family is now three cars strong with Isaac, Matt and Steven fielding cars last week in a show that was destined to be rained out.

Not wanting to leave the Mini Stock division out of the loop, that class had a blowout race created over a decade ago. Mike Caveye was a driver in that class as well as the Street Stocks. He was popular among his peers and the fans, and this race was named in his honor when he passed away. David Steele has won three of the last four races, including last season. No driver in the area is as hot as he is, having won eight of the last nine races in which he started.

Still without a win in the big event is two-time reigning champion Marilyn Yawnick. She will be hoping to change that this week. Past champion Terry Kendrick won the race in 2016 and would love another one. 2014 champion Mike Whitaker will be there to make his presence known. A good turnout is anticipated with Jason Frost, Darek Alford, Zac McMurray, and Mike Frost among those to watch for. There could be a visitor or two coming from Medford for the show, which will pay $302 to win.

The Saturday program will offer regular purses for all three divisions and full formats. The extra money will be on the line on Sunday. Both nights should offer great racing for the fans to enjoy. For further information, go to www.siskiyoumotorspeedway.com.

John Arnberg Memorial Winners

2005 John Toolanen
2006 Randy McDaniel
2007 Jon DeBenedetti
2008 Travis Peery
2009 Jon DeBenedetti
2010 Vince Bowers
2011 Brian Poppa
2012 Travis Peery
2013 Dave Duste Jr
2014 Riley Simmons
2015 Mark Wauge
2016 Ryan McDaniel
2017 Nick Trenchard

Bo Hittson Memorial Winners

2004 Jesse Morton
2005 info not available
2006 Chris Cullen
2007 info not available
2008 Ryan Haines
2009 Tony Morton
2010 Billy Jasmer
2011 Jorddon Braaten
2012 Jesse Morton
2013 Cody Hamilton
2014 Jorddon Braaten
2015 Jorddon Braaten
2016 Brian Cooper
2017 Jorddon Braaten

Mike Caveye/Mini Stock Blowout Winners

2008 John Derby
2009 Jim Pope
2010 David Steele
2011 John Derby
2012 Dan Borror
2013 Ryder Boswell
2014 David Steele
2015 David Steele
2016 Terry Kendrick
2017 David Steele


Penny Gold Rush, NASCAR Racing On Tap This Saturday 
At Coos Bay Speedway

Coos Bay, Oregon...One thing about Coos Bay Speedway is it's all about bringing families together for some great racing action. This Sunday night, First Community Credit Union is sponsoring Kids Penny Gold Rush. Kids grab as many pennies as they can, and the one who collects the most wins a $25 gift card. Plus, they get all the free money they can grab as there will be $300 worth of pennies.

Action on the track will include the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Super Late Models, Sportsman Late Models, Street Stocks, Mini Outlaws, Hornets and the new Junior Stingers division for competitors 7 to 14 years old.

The NASCAR prize offered at the end of the season is $3,000 to the track champion and $2,000 to the state champion for the Super Late Model division. This means a driver can win $5,000 by season's end. After three events, last season's Sportsman Late Model champion Brody Montgomery leads Chris Ray by 16 points. Montgomery has two feature victories. Since he made seven starts and ranked sixth in the Super Late Model standings last year, Montgomery isn't available for the $1,000 prize to the top rookie in the field. At the moment, fourth ranked Richard Wallace is the top driver in the group who has never had a NASCAR license before. That puts him in line for the rookie bonus, and he is only eight points behind Thor Kristensen in a close race for third in the standings.

With Montgomery making a clean break from the Sportsman Late Model class, it's Dyllan Siewell doing his best to keep two-time champion Wayne Butler out of the lead. Siewell is the only driver with four Top 5 finishes, including one win. Because three-time winner Wayne Butler had a bad night, he finds himself trailing by 44 points. Just four points behind Butler is the steady Charlie Withers. Tom Williams has competed in several different classes at the speedway and he is only two points behind Withers in a closer battle for third.

Ken Fox is off to a great start with his win in the season opener and three seconds. He has a commanding lead in the championship chase. Troy Chamberlain is a one-time winner so far this season, and he leads David Smith by two points and Jeff Thurman by six in the race for second. 2016 champion Daniel Land and Steve Dubisar are the other winners so far this year, and both are anticipated this week. Land competed in The Iron Giant Series last week and picked up a fifth place finish in a very competitive 21 car field.

Sam Talon has three Mini Outlaw wins, but he still only leads one time winner John Henry by 16 points. Talon won last week. Meanwhile, Jason Kellum leads longtime racer Carl Johnson by six points in a good race for third in the standings.

April Warmack took advantage of a bad night by David Pellam to gain the Hornet point lead by just two points. This close battle finds rookie Kylea Krossman just four points out of the lead, while one time winner Hannah Robison is six points back. Braden Fugate picked up his second win of the season last week and will be looking for number three this week. Other drivers to watch for include Tyler Tullos, Chris Parker, Tanner Johnson and Andrew Grisham.

The track is always looking for ways to get new drivers into the field, and the Jr Stinger division was created during the offseason for just that purpose. It puts drivers from the age 7 to 14 into their own Hornet division. Griff Smith made the first event, all by himself, and he made some good laps. He is hoping for some competition this week.

Saturday night will offer an opportunity for kids to win some money and will offer the fans a great variety of NASCAR racing once again. For further information, go to www.coosbayspeedway.us.


 Nieman, Robertson Open Diamond Mountain Speedway Season With Wins

Susanville, CA...May 12...Chris Nieman opened the 2018 season at Diamond Mountain Speedway in Susanville, California with a victory in the IMCA Modified Main Event. Neiman is the 2016 champion, and he had to hold off reigning track champion Matt Murphy to collect the win. Wade Kennemore brought it home third, followed by Larry McCracken, Galen Hainline, Jeff Chew, Steve Bejeck, Rob Robles and Boyd Murchison.

A small turnout at IMCA Sport Modifieds saw Bob Feller out run Jason Emmot for the Main Event victory. The duo ended up tied for the point lead last season.

2016 champion Richard Longacre outran Rick Higby to win the Hobby Stock Main Event as Joe Marlow finished third ahead of Rudy McGowan.

The best turn out of the night was offered by the Mini Stock division, and Kate Robertson scored the feature win ahead of Johnny Moya. Taylor Micone grabbed the final podium position in third, followed by Ryan Belli and Raymond Talavera. Cody Kennemore finished sixth, followed by Anthony Havland, Colton Chew, David Wilson and Larry Foster.

Racing will continue with a two day weekend event scheduled for June 15th and 16th. IMCA Modifieds, IMCA Sport Modifieds, Hobby Stocks and Mini Stocks are all on the card. Race track information can be found at www.lassencountyfair.org/interim-events/diamond-mountain-speedway/.


Pit Stops

Southern Oregon Speedway fans found out that Street Stock racing is still alive and well in Oregon last Saturday night. The Iron Giant Street Stock Series kicked off the first of an eight race tour of eight different tracks with their stop at the White City race track. They brought a field of 21 race cars for the show.

The Street Stock Series was the brainchild of James Whitehouse and past Cottage Grove Speedway champion Chris Sine. Both drivers still don't have their cars ready yet, so they were working behind the scenes to make sure things went smoothly for opening day. The idea of pitting the best Street Stock drivers against each other at eight different race tracks was a good one. The fact that they will be ending their point season on Labor Day Weekend with the big Iron Giant Race at Willamette is icing on the cake.

Last season, Donald Schott picked up the win at Southern Oregon Speedway. He was back to defend his race win, but the competition was twice as fierce this time around. In addition to two of last season's Top 5 point competitors, Erik Jarnport and Jessie Yankee, the field was bolstered by such top-caliber competitors as past Willamette champion David Cronk, past Coos Bay Speedway champion Daniel Land and current Cottage Grove Speedway point leader and past champion Andrew Langan.

Drivers came from all over Oregon to make this an exciting show from start to finish. After picking up wins in both his heat race and the six lap Scramble, Yankee may have been the driver to beat going into the Main Event. Langan, however, had other ideas. The Langan family has been competing at Cottage Grove Speedway and other venues for many years, and Andrew brought his A game for the Main Event.

With 50 laps of racing to do, there was plenty of time for a racer to make their move. However, it was Langan leading every lap for the $1,000 victory. Lest you think it was easy for him, he had his hands full with heat race winners Shannon Horn and Brian Cronk running closely behind in second and third. Cronk was wheeling the car of past Willamette Speedway champion Jody Tanner as his own racer wasn't quite ready.

Throughout the pack, the fans were treated to some close racing. Street Stock racing isn't something you get to see very often at Southern Oregon Speedway, and these drivers definitely entertained. Langan was just a little bit quicker to the checkered flag, though Horn was a close $500 second. Cronk grabbed the final position on the podium as Schott and Land made up the remainder of the Top 5.

Josh Heller ran in the Top 5 for a while before falling back to sixth. Making up the balance of the Top 10 at the finish was long time Sunset Speedway competitor Bob "Smitty" Smith, Yankee, Joey Tardio and Doug Scott. The tour is off to Madras Speedway to do a little head-to-head racing with the track's Sportsman class, but they are looking forward to the opportunity to come back for their third visit to Southern Oregon Speedway next year.

The Late Model division seems to be a bit more equal this year than it was last year. One driver who's been in the hunt for the wins in both races is reigning champion Nathan Augustine. Augustine got a little bit of a reminder that it won't be so easy this year when he was passed by Dave Foote, who ended up winning their heat race. Augustine also got second in the Trophy Dash.

The man winning the Trophy Dash as well as the first heat race was John Dees. Dees has been noticeably faster this season after two events. It looked like he was still figuring out the handle on his car in the opener when he led six laps before doing a solo spin. However, he charged his way back up to make a late pass on Mike Linder for third. This time out, Dees ran with Augustine throughout the Main Event.

What was interesting was watching John make attempts to get around on the outside. The car seemed hooked up out there, but he couldn't quite make the move. Augustine can be a difficult driver to get by when his car is running strong, and that was certainly the case on Saturday night. Nathan took the win with John Dees earning a career-best second.

When the Late Model division got rebooted at Southern Oregon Speedway in 2016, it was long time Medford area competitors Mike Linder and Bob Dees who answered the call. On Saturday night, the two veterans had a good battle going for third in the Main Event. Dees was rebounding from mechanical issues dropping him out of a Top 5 run at the season opener. However, Linder had a few tricks up his sleeve and kept Bob at bay to grab the third place finish at the checkered flag. Both drivers get to run the Trophy Dash the next time the Late Models are on the card as part of the 6th Annual Roger Haudenshild Tribite on June 2nd.

In the weeks leading up to the season opener, there were some inquiries from Pro Stock drivers about the possibility of running with the Late Models this season. Management had an opportunity to get a look at a couple of Pro Stocks competing with the Late Models on short notice this last week. This was allowed in the interest of getting some data to assess the situation.

One of the drivers was Roy Bain, but his race ended with a flat tire on the opening lap. The other driver was last season's Pro Stock champion, Dr. Scott Lenz. What was interesting was Lenz found himself in a battle with season opener winner Miles Deubert for the fifth position. Deubert held the spot for a while, but Lenz made his move and finished fifth.

Deubert still had decent points in sixth, and the battle at the top of the standings is close between he and leader Augustine, John Dees and Linder. It's certainly early in the season, but you don't want to lose ground to the others with a bad night.

The other encouraging sign is that there are other cars in the works for the Late Models. Longtime Southern Oregon Speedway competitor John DeBenedetti made an appearance in the Tom Parry Late Model. Unfortunately, they discovered a crack in the frame earlier in the evening and were forced to scratch from the Main Event. They will return to fight another day. There are rumors abounding of a Pro Stock champion coming out in a Late Model sometime this season, and we're still following this story. Certainly, it's drivers like rookie Eric Massey, Garrett Dees and Don Garrett Jr who are helping make this thing happen this year.

The Mini Stock division is in a bit of a rut. A few drivers are down for the count, and it's showing in the car count department. The heat race crash that happened two weeks ago between Cameron Hall and Steve Goetz didn't just put the #007 car out of commission. It left Goetz with severe front-end damage to his car. Andrew Hall reported that he would like to find another Pinto Wagon to replace the old car, but he's looking for a car to get Cameron Hall back out at the track as soon as possible.

2014 champion Gary Anderson is still missing after blowing a motor in the season opener, and rookie Tim Hedges has been making repairs to his car in the hopes of having a better night the next time he's out there. There are more cars to be seen in future Mini Stock events this season.

The story of the Mini Stock season so far has been how fast David Steele has looked. David gave no indication of slowing down when he opened the night with a Trophy Dash win and followed it up with a victory in his heat race. Hunter Magnan continues his strong start as he finished second in both of those races. With problems to take care of in his #89 car, reigning champion Kristopher Mix didn't start the preliminaries. This put him last on the grid in the Main Event.

We've been asking when Mix would get his first win, and the answer was Saturday night. Mix surprised Steele by making the pass and taking the lead. Steele then had his hands full with Magnan in a good battle for second. It looked like there might have been something wrong with the #67 car, but Steele made another rally to attempt to pass on Mix late in the race. However, Mix was up to that challenge and scored his first career win. Though the field was low on cars, this team had to work hard making sure their car was just right, and there was plenty of deserved satisfaction for this victory.

Steele continued to add to his point lead as he finished second, and the third place finish earned by Magnan means that he's still very much in this championship battle. In fact, he's currently second in a close race with Mix. Michael McLeod is making an early claim on top rookie honors this year and continues to get better with each turn behind the wheel. Garrett Fredrickson also managed to bring his car home to a checkered flag that will put him in the next Trophy Dash as he finished fourth.

There is also some concern over the slow start for the Valley Stor-All Late Model Lites. A few drivers anticipated for this season have yet to show. As Dusty Aos still doesn't have his car ready, he's been wheeling the #99 car that Bill Spencer drove last season. We've heard that Greg Arnold's old car will turn up with a new driver this year, and we've also heard that 2014 champion John Barger will be seen this season. Danny Prewitt had enough damage on his #29 car that it isn't ready, and 2016 champion Lee Doty's car was up in Portland getting repaired.

When the Valley Stor-All Late Model Lites show up on June 16th, it's anticipated that there will be at least a couple new cars in the field that we haven't seen this year. The four who have been showing up have been battling hard on the race track. Some have said that Charlie Eaton was due to have a big season. At the season opener, motor problems in preliminaries made it look like he might not even get through the night. He salvaged things pretty well with a late pass on Dusty Aos to gain second in that race, which was won by Eric Aos. Unfortunately for Eric, mechanical issues early in the most recent Main Event ended that race early for him.

Meanwhile, Eaton was on fire. After winning the Trophy Dash and the heat race, he took the lead from Greg Arnold midway through the race and proceeded to hold him off for the victory. Arnold settled for second ahead of Dusty Aos.

The Southern Oregon Dwarf Car Association got to make their first appearance of the season at their home track. They were scheduled to run a few weeks earlier before rain came. They were also scheduled to run for $1,000 to win that night courtesy of Jim Nelson, who is known for putting up money once or twice a year for the drivers of his favorite division. That money was still good, and it brought an 18 car field on Saturday night.

After picking up a big win at Cottage Grove Speedway in a shootout race that brought together the three Dwarf Car groups of Oregon, Kalvin Morton had his eyes on another big prize. It certainly looked like he would be difficult to beat when he won both his heat race in the A Dash. Unfortunately, he could not have anticipated the back straightaway crash on the opening lap that ended the race for himself, Fred Hay, Mason Lewman and newcomer Ashleigh Strain. Strain, who has raced for the past several seasons in Outlaw Karts, was making her first Dwarf Car start at Southern Oregon Speedway.

At the front of the pack, Chad Cardoza was looking like a sure winner. Josh King didn't have his car ready for the night, but Jerry Hauck graciously gave him the keys to the #4us car. Hauck watched proudly as King battled it out with Cardoza and Randy Slater in the early goings of the race. Looking the way he did early on, you have to believe that a win is in the future for Slater this year. King made the move around Slater. With four laps to go, he charged past Cardoza and became $1,000 richer as a result.

Cardoza managed to take the checkered in second ahead of Ryan Smith. Cody Peters made a late move around Slater for a fourth place finish. It was a great group of Dwarf Car competitors who put on a show for the fans. Two time reigning champion Brock Peters, who finished second at Cottage Grove the week before, was mired in mid pack for the Main Event. He salvaged a sixth place finish to go with his earlier heat race win as Joe Sanders, Michael Johnson, Mark Neilson and Bill Winter made up the remainder of the Top 10.

One encouraging sign for the Dwarf Cars this year is that several newcomers have joined the field. After his strong second place season in Mini Stocks last year, Michael Johnson is now in the former Anthony Pope Dwarf Car. We also have Mini Stock graduate Andrew Hall, Dan Halbert and Ashleigh Strain on the roster this year.

Siskiyou Motor Speedway had high hopes for last week. The Calculated Comfort Outlaw Pro Stocks were in town along with the track's IMCA Sport Modified and Mini Stock divisions, and a field of some 40 competitors across the rosters were there to do some racing. Much like a few weeks earlier, the drivers got through hot laps before rain came and claimed the show. In this case, there was only a slight chance of rain in the forecast. It was a disappointing night that had drivers wanting to go down to Southern Oregon Speedway to get some racing in.

The Calculated Comfort Outlaw Pro Stocks brought in some 18 competitors, and it was a talent loaded field. In addition to reigning champion Dr. Scott Lenz and 2016 champion Steve Borror, past Pro Stock champion Dustin Knight, two time Late Model Lites champion Brian Johnsen and Pro Stock veteran John David Duffie were there to do some racing. You also had the Flowers family with their cars, two cars from the Hackworth team, Matt Harlow, Roy Bain and Bryan Hammond in the mix. Unfortunately, they'll have to wait until next time to do some racing.

For the IMCA Sport Modified class, this was the final tune-up before the big Bo Hittson Memorial race. The Hittson has been an important race on the schedule in Yreka for many years. After a disappointing car count at the previous race, there were a dozen racers ready to put on a show for the fans. This included point leader Rich McCoy, who is still looking for his first win after three events. Likewise, Top 3 ranked competitors Ryder Boswell and Trevor Tiffee are also hoping to put a notch in the win column. Other drivers who were there included reigning champion DJ Bottoms, 2016 champion Jimmy Lipke, recent Chico feature winner Justin Foux and three cars from the Sanders Racing Team, driven by Isaac, Matt and Steven. Fortunately, they get two racing opportunities as part of the Memorial Day Weekend festivities.

In the Mini Stock division, three of their biggest stars, two-time reigning champion Marilyn Yawnick, past champion Terry Kendrick and 2014 champion Mike Whitaker, were all ready to do battle once again. The division has seen some new drivers on the roster this year, including 14 year old Zac McMurray, Darek Alford and Tiffany Cobb, who was making her racing debut. Like the IMCA Sport Modified class, they get two racing opportunities this Saturday and Sunday.

Coos Bay Speedway continues to offer some fan friendly activities each time they have a Saturday night show. Not only was it a night in which several kids won free bikes and also got free Hot Wheels, they had the second race for the Interstate Sprint Car Series. The Sprint Cars brought a field of 22 cars, which included people from Cottage Grove, Roseburg and Medford in addition to some of the track's regular racers. It was past Southern Oregon Sprint Car Tour champion and reigning Medford champion Kyler Barraza making it look easy in a dominant performance out front. The win paid $1,000 as he collected the victory ahead of Tyler Thompson, Tyrell Mead, David Hibbard and Kinzer Cox.

There was some question about who would be willing to tow to Coos Bay as it's not anticipated that Coos Bay competitors will be towing to the other tracks. There was heavy support from Cottage Grove regulars, but the addition of several Medford regulars, including Top 10 finishers Camden Robustelli and Bailey Hibbard, meant that there could be some life in this Interstate Sprint Car Series.

The other part of the program that's getting some traction is the Hornets division. We have three ladies in the division who are beginning to become breakout stars as April Warmack, Hannah Robison and rookie Kylea Krossman are all in title contention. Warmack is the current point leader, and both she and Robison are feature winners so far. The most recent Main Event winner, Braden Fugate, become the first two-time winner in the group. With 2017 champion Ryan Siewell and 2016 champion Jeremiah Reiber moving on from the class, it's an opportunity for other drivers to break out from the pack.

Coos Bay decided to run a Street Stock show against The Iron Giant race at Southern Oregon Speedway and only had point leader Ken Fox and hard charger Steve Dubisar show up. Dubisar was the driver with the most feature wins last season. When things return to normal, the Main Event could get very interesting in this class as there are four different winners in four races.

In addition to their NASCAR Super Late Model and Sportsman Late Model programs that are offering nice point fund prizes at the end of the year, the track has started a Junior Stinger division. This is essentially a Hornet class for drivers 11 to 14 years old. Last time, there was one driver to give it a go, and it's hoped that this division will gain some traction. Speedway management is hoping to bring new drivers into the fold.

Not much news has come out from Hayfork Speedway. Entering May, it was announced that they wouldn't have the scheduled opener due to the track not being ready and insurance issues. The day given for the opener was May 26th. It is May 23rd as of this writing and no announcement has been made as to when the track will be running. Hopefully, they'll be able to get things up and functional soon.

Orland Raceway held their annual Friday night racing event as part of the Glenn County Fair, and car count was up across the board. It's interesting to note that Richard Vanderploeg came in and snapped the Jeremy Langenderfer Pure Stock winning streak with a win of his own. It was a photo finish victory for Josh Tucker as seven Wingless Gas Sprints were in action. Reigning Mini Truck champion Keith Ross claimed the victory in an 11 truck field, while Paul Stevens claimed the win in the Mini Stocks.


Sprint Cars, Focus Midgets Headline Open Wheel Showcase 
At Southern Oregon Speedway Saturday Night

White City, Oregon..Saturday night is the Open Wheel Showcase event at Southern Oregon Speedway. The open-wheel themed night was started by promoter Mike McCann in 2017 and built around the Kendall Oil Winged Sprint Cars and the Northwest Focus Midgets. The strongest running Focus Midget group on the West Coast is based out of the Washington area, and this event is one of their six track, ten race Summer Series events.

For the Kendall Oil Winged Sprint Cars, this is an opportunity for Southern Oregon Speedway to have a stronger Sprint Car presence than the track has ever had. Though Sprint Cars have been involved on the schedule at this track since it opened in 1996, there's never been a real serious attempt made to start a strong series here. McCann wanted to change all of that when he took over as promoter in 2016.

A year later, David Hibbard had the idea of going to the limited rules package that has been used successfully at Cottage Grove and in Yreka before that. The idea is to keep a sensible and fair set of rules that makes the class very competitive. When the track went this direction with the rules, it opened the floodgates for younger drivers coming up from the little Southern Oregon Speedway Kart Racing program.

The closest battle at the season opener was between two teen sensations, Tanner Holmes and Enrique Jaime. Both drivers are champions on the Kart level who started racing this class last season. Jaime finished fifth in the standings. As for the season opener, Jaime led Holmes for most of the race before Holmes made the pass to claim second. Jaime settled for third to go with an earlier heat race win.

At the head of the pack was David Hibbard. Hibbard carries an experience advantage and is a past champion at Cottage Grove Speedway. However, his motivation for being involved in the Medford effort is not for his own personal glory. That was Illustrated clearly last season when he abandoned a second-place effort in the season finale to allow his son, Bailey Hibbard, and Marissa Henson to battle for that position.

Henson ended up finishing second by just one point over Bailey, who was a three-time feature winner last year. The younger Hibbard got off to a good start in the opener by winning his heat race and the Scramble, but his Main Event ended with mechanical failure early. Henson, meanwhile, took a checkered flag in sixth at the opener. Both drivers are also part of the youth movement in this division.

Further up in the pack you'll find yet another teen competitor, Jeffrey Hudson. Hudson won the Outlaw Pro Stock championship two seasons ago at the age of 15. He won his first Sprint Car Main Event at Southern Oregon Speedway a year later, but his Sprint Car effort was derailed last year when he blew a motor on opening day. To get his car to a fourth place finish in this season's opener has Jeffrey confident heading into this week's race.

You'll find a nice mixture of teen competitors and a few drivers who have been around for a while. Reigning champion Kyler Barraza recently won the Main Event at Coos Bay Speedway, and he is anticipated this week along with another past Kart champion, Blaine Cory, Theron Smith, Camden Robustelli, Calvin Hibbard, Aaron Miller and Todd Whipple. Word it is that two of the Focus Midget teams will also be bringing Sportsman Sprints to compete in this class.

As for the Focus Midgets, word from up north is that 30 drivers are coming down to compete, which is up eight cars from the 22 car field they brought to the show last year. Reigning champion Tristin Thomas will be out to repeat as the Medford race winner, but he can expect some stiff competition from the likes of 2016 champion Nick Evans, Ariel Biggs, Jonathan Jorgenson, Hannah Lindquist and Nick Larson, to name a few.

The Open Wheel themed night will also include the Southern Oregon Dwarf Cars and some vintage race cars from the Old Time Racers of Oregon Hardtop group. It should be a good night of racing at Southern Oregon Speedway this Saturday night. For further information, go to www.southernoregonspeedway.com.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Langan Wins Iron Giant Race At Southern Oregon Speedway, Barraza Wins At Coos Bay, Rain Wins At Siskiyou Speedway, More




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Whoops - It's Chris Sine one of the organizers of the Iron Giant Series (Sorry Chris)

Langan Wins $1,000 First Prize 
In Iron Giant Street Stock Race

White City, Oregon...May 19...Andrew Langan scored the $1,000 victory in the 50 lap Disorder On The Southern Border Iron Giant Street Stock Main Event Saturday night at Southern Oregon Speedway. This was the opening event of the eight race, eight track Iron Giant Street Stock Series, and it produced an impressive 21 car field. Langan is the current Cottage Grove Speedway point leader and 2016 champion, and he led the race from start to finish.

The 21 cars were split into three eight lap heat races, and Brian Cronk won the first race ahead of Josh Heller. Jessie Yankee outran Andrew Langan to win the second heat, and Shannon Horn beat Jeff Marson back to the line to win the third heat. They also ran a four lap Scramble, and Yankee picked up the win in that race ahead of Brian Cronk. Sean Cronk threw a bearing in his heat race to end his night. Marson's night ended after his second place heat race performance due to transmission issues and RC Levin had motor issues put a premature end to his evening.

This left 18 starters for the Main Event, and Langan charged out to the early lead ahead of previous Southern Oregon Speedway winner Donald Schott and Smitty Smith. David Cronk pitted on the first lap and came out in front of the leaders on lap four as Shannon Horn raced into the third position. Tom Zurita spun in Turn 2 for a lap eight caution flag. Langan continued to set the pace as Horn took second from Schott on the restart. Yankee and Brian Cronk were battling closely behind Schott for the fourth position. After a lap 19 yellow flag, Brian Cronk slipped past Schott for the third position and began to pressure Horn for second. It was a good race up front with some good battles throughout the pack as Langan led Horn, Brian Cronk, Schott and Heller at the halfway point of the race. Yankee took fifth from Heller on lap 27, and spins by Erik Jarnport and Zurita brought out caution flags on lap 30 and 33. Langan was still leading Horn, Brian Cronk, Schott and Yankee at that point. Daniel Land made a charge past Yankee for fifth on lap 41. Langan drove a flawless race and earned the big $1,000 victory. Horn brought it home for a $500 second. Brian Cronk settled for third, followed by Schott, Land, Heller, Smith, Yankee, Joey Tardio and Doug Scott.

Race Results 
 Iron Giant Street Stocks
Heat 1-Brian Cronk, Josh Heller, Daniel Land, Don Schott, Roger Hubbard, Tim Zurita, Kevin Ballard

Heat 2-Jesse Yankee, Andrew Langan, Joey Tardio, Smitty Smith, Erik Jarnport, Sean Cronk, RC Levin

Heat 3-Shannon Horn, Jeff Marson, David Cronk, Dave Schmidt, Jeff Tuttle, Doug Scott, Justin Tracy

Scramble-Jesse Yankee, Brian Cronk, Andrew Langan, Josh Heller, Shannon Horn

Main Event-Andrew Langan, Shannon Horn, Brian Cronk, Don Schott, Daniel Land, Josh Heller, Smitty Smith, Jesse Yankee, Joey Tardio, Doug Scott, Erik Jarnport, Jeff Tuttle, Kevin Ballard, David Cronk, David Schmidt, Tim Zurita, Justin Tracy, Roger Hubbard, Sean Cronk NS, RC Levin NS, Jeff Marson NS


King Scores Big Dwarf Car Victory 
At Southern Oregon Speedway

White City, Oregon...May 19...Taking the lead from Chad Cardoza with just four laps remaining, Josh King picked up a $1,000 victory in the Southern Oregon Dwarf Car Main Event Saturday night at Southern Oregon Speedway. Thanks to the sponsorship of Jim Nelson, the win paid $1,000 to King, who was driving the Jerry Hauck car. Cardoza settled for second.

Coming off of an impressive victory at Cottage Grove a week earlier, Kalvin Morton picked up wins in his six lap heat race and the six lap A Dash. Ryan Smith won his heat race, while Brock Peters battled Fred Hay to win the third heat. King picked up the win in the B Dash. Mechanical issues prevented Kaycee Sheeler and rookie Andrew Hall from starting the Main Event.

Morton's night ended in disappointment as he was eliminated in a seven car crash on the backstretch on the opening lap. Newcomer Ashleigh Strain, Mason Lewman, Steve Walker and Fred Hay were also done after the crash. Cardoza led the restart ahead of Randy Slater and Cody Peters. A low move in Turn 4 of the third lap gained King the second position from Slater as the lead three cars ran in close formation. Slater surprised King by making an inside pass in Turn 3 to regain second on lap 10, but King made a pass on the front stretch on lap 13 to once again grab second. Moments later, Dan Halbert brought out a lap 14 caution flag. Cardoza led King and Slater on the restart. A high pass in Turn 4 of the 17th lap gained King the lead. King went on to score the impressive victory ahead of Cardoza. Slater faded slightly at the finish as he lost third to a Turn 4 pass by Ryan Smith on lap 19 and was passed on the inside in Turn 4 on the final lap by Cody Peters for fourth. Slater settled for fifth, followed by Brock Peters, Joe Sanders, Michael Johnson, Mark Neilson and Bill Winter.

The Dwarf Cars return for the Open Wheel Showcase race this Saturday night, along with the Northwest Focus Midgets, Kendall Oil Winged Sprint Cars and OTRO Hardtops. For further information, go to www.southernoregonspeedway.com.

Race Results 
 SODCA Dwarf Cars
Heat 1-Kalvin Morton, Chad Cardoza, Steve Walker, Paul Haslow, Mark Nielsen, Michael Johnson, Dan Halbert.

Heat 2-Ryan Smith, Cody Peters, Josh King, Ashleigh Strain, Joe Sanders, Kaycee Sheeler.

Heat 3-Brock Peters, Fred Hay, Randy Slater, Mason Lewman, Bill Winter, Andrew Hall.

A Dash-Kalvin Morton, Cody Peters, Fred Hay, Brock Peters, Chad Cardoza, Ryan Smith.

B Dash-Josh King, Joe Sanders, Steve Walker, Mason Lewman, Dan Halbert, Mark Nielsen, Ashleigh Strain, Michael Johnson, Bill Winter, Paul Haslow.

Main Event-Josh King, Chad Cardoza, Ryan Smith, Cody Peters, Randy Slater, Brock Peters, Joe Sanders, Michael Johnson, Mark Nielsen, Bill Winter, Dan Halbert, Fred Hay, Kalvin Morton, Steve Walker, Mason,  Lewman, Andrew Hall,  Kaycee Sheerer.


Victory For Augustine At Southern Oregon Speedway

White City, Oregon...May 19...Nathan Augustine earned the victory in the 20 lap Late Model Main Event Saturday night at Southern Oregon Speedway. Augustine was coming off of a second place finish at the season opener behind the surprising Miles Deubert. He is the reigning champion, and this win also prevented a clean sweep for John Dees.

John Dees opened the night with a four lap Trophy Dash victory ahead of Augustine and held off his father, Bob Dees, to win their six lap heat race. Dave Foote outran Augustine to win the other heat race. Pro Stock champion Scott Lenz and Roy Bain joined the field with the right rear tire allowed by the rules as management was gathering information for future use in the division.

The race had to be restarted after Foote and Don Garrett Jr brought out the yellow flag in Turn 2. Augustine led John Dees and Mike Linder on the restart. Dees was making a strong move on the outside, but Augustine ran just a bit stronger on the inside. A lap seven yellow flag flew and Garrett retired at that point. Foote spun for a yellow flag on lap eight, and Augustine led John Dees and Linder on the restart. There were several good battles for position as Augustine raced with John Dees, Linder battled Bob Dees and Lenz had a good race going with fellow Pro Stock alumnus Deubert. Though Dees seemed to have his car hooked up on the outside, he was unable to make a winning move around Augustine. Augustine was the happy winner ahead of John Dees, Linder, Bob Dees, Lenz, Deubert, Eric Massey, Dave Foote, Garrett Dees and Garrett.

The Late Models will return as part of the big 6th Annual Roger Haudenshild Tribute Race on June 2nd. The event will feature IMCA Modifieds, IMCA Sport Modifieds and Calculated Comfort Outlaw Pro Stocks, along with Late Models, Southern Oregon Dwarf Cars and JOAT Labs Hornets. For further information, go to www.southernoregonspeedway.com.

Race Results
Late Models
Trophy Dash-John Dees, Nathan Augustine, Mike Linder.

Heat 1-Dave Foote, Nathan Augustine, Mike Linder, Don Garrett Jr.

Heat 2-John Dees, Bob Dees, Miles Deubert, Garrett Dees, Eric Massey.

Main Event-Nathan Augustine, John Dees, Mike Linder, Bob Dees, Scott Lenz, Miles Deubert, Eric Massey, Dave Foote, Garrett Dees, Don Garrett Jr, Roy Bain.


Mix Snaps Steele Win Streak At Five With First Career Win 
At Southern Oregon Speedway

White City, Oregon...May 19...Kristopher Mix won a good battle with David Steele to capture his first career 15 lap Mini Stock Main Event victory. Mix is the reigning champion, and after gaining the lead with a surprising pass on Steele, he held him off to snap a five race win streak for Steele.

The night started off with Steele collecting victories in the six lap heat race and four lap Trophy Dash. Mix missed the heat race making repairs for the Main Event, but the repairs seemed to do the trick.

Steele led the opening lap ahead of Hunter Magnan and Mix. Mix took second from Magnan on a lap two restart, but the lead three cars ran in close formation. An inside pass in Turn 2 of the fourth lap put Mix into the lead. Magnan was pressuring Steele for second when Michael McLeod spun in Turn 2 for a lap nine caution flag. Mix continued to lead Steele and Magnan on the restart. Steele made a strong move in his bid regain the lead with two laps to go, but Mix kept his cool and remained in front. Mix picked up the win ahead of Steele, Magnan, Garrett Fredrikson and McLeod.

Mini Stocks are off for a few weeks, but they will return to action on June 16th. This will give the competitors enough time to make repairs. For further information, go to www.southernoregonspeedway.com.

Race Results 
 Mini Stocks
Trophy Dash-David Steele, Hunter Magnan, Michael McLeod, Garrett Fredrickson.

Heat-David Steele, Hunter Magnan, Michael McLeod.

Main Event-Kristopher Mix, David Steele, Hunter Magnan, Garrett Fredrickson, Michael McLeod.


Eaton Sweeps Valley Stor-All Late Model Lites Action 
At Southern Oregon Speedway

White City, Oregon...May 19...Charlie Eaton scored a clean sweep in the Valley Stor-All Late Model Lites division at Southern Oregon Speedway. It was capped off by his victory in the 15 lap Main Event.

After winning the four lap Trophy Dash ahead of previous winner Eric Aos and the six lap heat race in front of Greg Arnold, Eaton followed Arnold in the early goings of the Main Event. Eric Aos stalled on the back stretch for the only caution flag on lap 2. Arnold continued to lead Eaton and Dusty Aos on the restart. An inside pass in Turn 2 of the seventh lap moved Eaton into the lead. Once he got there, Eaton was not about to let it go as he sped to the victory ahead of Arnold and Dusty Aos.

The Valley Stor-All Late Model Lites will return to action on June 16th. For further information, go to www.southernoregonspeedway.com.

Race Results 
Valley Stor-All Late Model Lites
Trophy Dash-Charlie Eaton, Eric Aos, Greg Arnold, Dusty Aos.

Heat-Charlie Eaton, Greg Arnold, Eric Aos, Dusty Aos.

Main Event-Charlie Eaton, Greg Arnold, Dusty Aos, Eric Aos.


 Rain Claims Another Race At Siskiyou Motor Speedway

Yreka, CA...May 19...Over 40 competitors had already signed into the pits and completed hot laps when the rains came and forced the cancellation of the rest of the program Saturday night at Siskiyou Motor Speedway. There was a strong turnout of Calculated Comfort Pro Stocks, IMCA Sport Modifieds and Mini Stocks.

Nearly 20 Pro Stock racers were chomping at the bit to go racing, including reigning champion Scott Lenz, 2016 champion Steve Borror, Scott Flowers and other notables, such as John David Duffie, Brian Johnsen and Dustin Knight. 2016 IMCA Modified champion Jimmy Lipke was back, along with Justin Foux, point leader Rich McCoy, Ryder Boswell and three cars from the Sanders Racing Team. Mini Stock Superstars Marilyn Yawnick, Terry Kendrick, Mike Whitaker and Jason Frost were among the drivers in their class. This was the second time this year that an event was rained out after hot laps were completed.

The track will come back with the annual two-day Memorial Day Weekend show. Sunday's event is the John Arnberg Memorial IMCA Modified race, paying $1,038 to the winner. It's also the Bo Hittson Memorial for the IMCA Sport Modifieds, paying $750 to win. The Mike Cavaye Sr Memorial for Mini Stocks will pay $302 to win.

With neighboring Medford not running these classes and several tracks in California going dark for the weekend, car count is expected to increase for the big two day show. For further information, go to www.siskiyoumotorspeedway.com.


 Barraza Unstoppable In interstate Sprint Car Series Race 
At Coos Bay Speedway

Coos Bay, Oregon...May 19 ..Kyler Barraza won the 25 lap Interstate Sprint Car Series Main Event Saturday night at Coos Bay Speedway. Barraza is a past Coos Bay Speedway champion and the reigning champion in Medford. Coos Bay has always been one of his favorite tracks to race, and he was fast all night. Barraza won the race by nearly a straight away over Tyler Thompson. Tyrell Mead was a strong third ahead of David Hibbard, Kinzer Cox, Camden Robustelli, Mike Crawford, Bailey Hibbard, Hedge Carter and Shane Forte.

There might have been some question as to how many competitors would be at the speedway for the newly revived series, but visitors from the Medford, Cottage Grove and Roseburg areas swelled the Sprint Car count to 22 cars. Barraza was the only driver to qualify in the 13 second bracket with a fast lap 13.787. He won his eight lap heat race ahead of Thompson. Tyrell Mead won his heat by a comfortable margin ahead of Bailey Hibbard and the final heat race win went to two-time champion Dave May ahead of Brett McGhie.

Wayne Butler battled point leader Dyllan Siewell to win the 20 lap Sportsman Late Model feature. Tom Williams settled for third ahead of Charlie Withers. However, Williams won the five lap Trophy Dash. Siewell picked up the victory in the 10 lap heat race.

Two-time reigning champion Sam Talon swept the five lap Trophy Dash, ten lap heat race and 15 lap Main Event for the Mini Outlaw class. Talon had some pressure from Carl Johnson, who settled for a very close second. John Carpenter finished third ahead of Jason Kellum.

Steve Dubisar made his first Street Stock start of the season and won the five lap Trophy Dash, 10 lap heat race and 10 lap Main Event. Point leader Ken Fox finished second in all three races.

Braden Fugate became the fourth different 20 lap Hornets Main Event winner in as many races. Fugate took full advantage of his pole position start to lead all the way and win by a straightaway in front of Steven Crawford. Chuck Peck made his debut with a third place finish, followed by April Warmack, Hannah Robison, Tyler Tullos, Tanner Johnson, Kylea Krossman, Chris Parker and Andy Austin. Robison won the five lap Trophy Dash, while Crawford and Fugate were the 10 lap heat race winners.

The track continues to put smiles on the faces of the children. On Saturday night, several bikes were given away to lucky winners. The track also gave out Hot Wheels to the first 100 kids through the gates.

Racing returns next Saturday night, and it's Kids Night Penny Gold Rush. A full lineup of divisions includes the NASCAR Whelen All American Series Super Late Models, Sportsman Late Models, Street Stocks, Mini Outlaws, Hornets and Junior Stingers. For further information, go to www.coosbayspeedway.us.


Matt Hein Wins Rick Brown Memorial Race At Douglas County Speedway

Roseburg, Oregon...May 19...The NSRA Sprint Car Series opened their season with the Rick Brown Memorial Race at Douglas County Speedway Saturday night. When the checkered flag waved on the 40 lap Main Event, it was Matt Hein winning by nearly a straightaway in front of Jeff Montgomery. Hein is a five-time NSRA Series champion, including winning the last three series titles. This was also his third win in the Brown Memorial as he proudly accepted the Rick Brown Super Shoe. Andy Alberding brought it home third, just ahead of Aaron Wilson. Ryan Orchard settled for fifth as Randy Dubois, Colton Nelson and Thomas Richardson were also lead lap finishers. Reece Goetz and Mitch Holte rounded out the Top 10.

Montgomery beat the field in qualifying with a fast lap of 12.405, just barely faster than Hein's 12.414 and the 12.418 of Wilson. Goetz won the first eight lap heat race, just ahead of Orchard. Kyle Alberding managed to hold off Hein to win the second heat, and Dubois won his heat race by the biggest margin ahead of Colton Nelson.

Marty White bested a field of 13 competitors to win the 25 lap West Coast Vintage Racers Main Event. Shawn Priest was in close pursuit for a second place finish as John Dauhl finished third. John Wills took a checkered flag in fourth, followed by Dean Warmerdam, Bob Willis, Dick Nelson, Chris Drakes, Dave Duncan and Jeff Kennedy. Wormadam set fast time with a 15.370 lap, beating the 15.614 of Dauhl. Bob Willis outran John Wills to win the the first four lap dash. Priest won the second dash ahead of Dick Nelson and Warmerdam won the third dash over Marty White. The first heat race win was earned by White ahead of Dauhl and Warmerdam won the second heat over Bob Willis.

Harlon Cox picked up the victory in the 25 lap PRA Hardtop Main Event. Cox beat Kyran Greene in a photo finish at the checkered flag. Troy Gasner was a solid third ahead of 2016 champion Greg Hickman, Donnie Fain, Steve Smith, Brian Leniahn and Mike Batman. Cox set the fast time of 17.155, beating a 17.220 of Gasner. Greene outran Cox to win the four lap Trophy Dash, and he had a repeat performance in holding off Cox to win the eight lap heat race.

Reigning PRA Modified champion Andrew Koens won the 25 lap Main Event with Brad Watson a very close second. Tom Elam was the only other lead lap finisher at Scott Copley and John Harvey completed the Top 5. Koens set the fast time with a 15.731 as Elam had a 16.015. Koens won the four lap Trophy Dash ahead of Elam, but Elam beat Koens back to the checkered flag in the eight lap heat race to prevent a clean sweep.

The track is dark this Saturday night, but the PRA Hardtops return on June 2nd along with the Street Stocks, Mini Stocks and Hornets. For further information, go to www.douglascountyspeedway.com.


Pfau Wins KT Clash,
Wheeler, Grimes, Fuller, Smith Win Kart Features

White City, Oregon...May 18-19...Phil Pfau won the KT100 Clash Friday night at Little Southern Oregon Speedway. The special two-day event was sponsored by Speed City of Medford, and the KT100 portion paid $1,000 to the winner. By virtue of his win and second place performances in his two heat races, Pfau had the pole for the KT100 20 lap Main Event and charged out to the lead at the drop of the green flag. Heat race winner Steve Rambo settled into second ahead of Daniel Kravitz. The lead three competitors remained in that order for the entire distance of the rapidly run event. Jeremy Brown settled for fourth ahead of Brent Meyer. Brown made a last turn pass to steal the four lap Bragging Rights Dash victory away from Rambo.

Mike Wheeler picked up the $600 first prize by winning the 20 lap 500 Open Main Event. $500 of the first prize money was sponsored by Dick's Towing. Wheeler also won the first of two ten lap heat races, but he settled for second in the other heat behind 2016 champion Johnny Burke. Burke appeared to be headed for a Bragging Rights Dash victory, but mechanical issues ended his night after the four lap race. Colby Bergquist threw a wheel in Turn 3 in the first heat and hit the Turn 1 wall and rolled in the second heat, ending his night. In the Main Event, Wheeler raced into the lead at the drop of the green flag ahead of Dillen Lausen and Sunday afternoon arrival Merissa Henson. Boardman took third from Henson on lap four and grabbed the second position from Lausen on a lap eight restart. However, Wheeler had a big lead and took it to the checkered flag ahead of Boardman, Lausen and Henson.

Reigning 250 Kart champion Trevor Grimes battled Bodee Weiser to score the 20 lap Main Event victory. Throughout Friday evening, it appeared as if 2016 champion Bodee Weiser might be the driver to beat. Weiser won both of his eight lap heat races as well as holding off his brother Braden Weiser to win the four lap Bragging Rights Dash. Braden Weiser and Grimes were the other heat race winners. Bodee Weiser led Grimes at the drop of the green flag, and Morgan Berry brought out a lap two caution flag. Bodee Weiser continued to lead Grimes and Braden Weiser on restart. 250 Kart rookie Taylor Fuller pitted on lap five. Brionna Fuller pitted a lap later, but a yellow flag saved her from losing a lap. Bodee Weiser continued to lead Grimes and Braden Weiser on the restart as Vinny DeBenedetti was running fourth. The leaders quickly came up on a slower kart. As they went through Turn 4, Bodee Weiser went high, but the slower kart went high as well. Grimes ducked underneath and took the lead. Morgan Berry brought out another caution flag on lap 14 and retired from the race. Grimes led Bodee Weiser and Braden Weiser on the restart. The leaders caught a slower kart on lap 18, but Grimes made the right move to get by and took it to the checkered flag. Bodee Weiser settled for second, followed by Braden Weiser, Brionna Fuller, DeBenedetti, Kloey Smith, Drew Berry, Morgan Berry and Taylor Fuller.

Taylor Fuller won his his first 20 lap Box Stock Main Event at Little Southern Oregon Speedway. Fuller has won several races at Yreka, where he won last season's championship. Making his move up from the Beginners Box Stock division, Jacob James won the first eight lap heat race ahead of Ryan Hirschbock, who also finished second to Fuller in the other heat race. Fuller had to be talked into running the four lap Bragging Rights Dash, but last lap passes around Hirschbock and then leader Keaton Augustine in the final turn earned Fuller an impressive victory. James raced out to the lead at the start ahead of Fuller and Hirschbock. The lead three karts ran in close formation at the front of the pack, and Fuller was trying to find a way past James. A low move in Turn 3 of the 11th lap finally put Fuller into the lead, and 2016 Beginners Box Stock champion Kiley Grimes spun for the only caution flag of the race. Fuller led Hirschbock on the restart, and they ran 1-2 to the checkered flag. Augustine was a solid third ahead of James, Grimes and Sunday arrival Keegan Bounds.

Chayce Smith turned in a dominant performance in winning the 20 lap Beginners Box Stock Main Event. Smith won both of his eight lap heat races on Friday night and also claimed the victory in the four lap Bragging Rights Dash. Uriah Sanders and Jayme DeBenedetti were the other heat race winners. Smith charged into the lead at the drop of the green flag ahead of Shailene Horn. Bhaltair Edwards spun for a lap two caution flag and spun again a lap later for another caution flag before pitting. Smith continued to lead Horn and reigning champion Malachi Johnson on the restart. Isaac Grimes retired on lap 9, and Hunter Granger spun in Turn 2 for a lap 10 caution flag. Smith continued to hold command on the restart with Horn doing a fine job in running second. Johnson and Mike Wheeler Jr had a good battle going for third. Smith stretched his lead to a straightaway by the waving of the checkered flag. Horn was a solid second head of Johnson and final lead lap finisher Wheeler. Carson Henson finished fifth, followed by Sanders, DeBenedetti, Granger, Grimes and Edwards.

Some of the KT100 competitors also brought UAS Speedway Karts to compete in the full program offered on Saturday afternoon. Daniel Kravitz won both eight lap heat races, chased by Jeremy Brown in the first heat and Trey Hornbrook in the second. Larry Fuller was running strong in the heats, but mechanical issues ended his afternoon early in the Main Event. Brown raced into the early lead ahead of Kravitz and Hornbrook. Ed Grubb joined Fuller in the pits early on as Steve Rambo took third from Hornbrook on lap two. Kravitz spun on lap five to put Rambo into second, but he regained the position when Rambo had an infield excursion off of Turn 2. The final yellow flag waved when Kravitz spun from second on lap 13. Brown led the restart and led the remaining laps for the victory. Kravitz moved back around Rambo before the checkered flag flew to claim second. Rambo settled for third.

Only two 206s showed to race on Friday. The six lap heat races were won by Steve Rambo and Lori Fuller, and Rambo won the Main Event ahead of Fuller.

Little Southern Oregon Speedway will have a full program of Kart racing on June 8th. The 500 Open Karts, 250s,  Box Stocks, Beginners Box Stocks and UAS Speedway Karts will be racing. For further information, go to www.southernoregonspeedway.com.

Race Results
Beginner Box Stocks
Heat 1A-Uriah Sanders, Jayme DeBenedetti, Hunter Granger, Isaac Grimes.

Heat 2A-Chayce Smith, Carson Henson, Shailene Horn, Malachi Johnson, Mike Wheeler Jr.

Heat 1B-Chayce Smith, Mike Wheeler Jr, Carson Henson, Shailene Horn, Malachi Johnson.

Heat 2B-Jayme DeBenedetti, Uriah Sanders, Hunter Granger, Isaac Grimes.

Main Event-Chayce Smith, Shailene Horn, Malachi Johnson, Mike Wheeler Jr, Carson Hansen, Uriah Sanders, Jayme DeBenedetti, Hunter Granger, Isaac Grimes, Bhaltair Edwards.

Bragging Rights Dash-Chayce Smith, Shailene Horn, Mike Wheeler Jr, Jayme DeBenedetti.

Box Stock
Heat 1A-Jacob James, Ryan Hirschbock, Taylor Fuller, Kiley Grimes, Keaton Augustine.

Heat 1B-Taylor Fuller, Ryan Hirschbock, Jacob James, Keaton Augustine, Kiley Grimes.

Bragging Rights Dash-Taylor Fuller, Keaton Augustine, Jacob James, Ryan Hirschbock.

Main Event-Taylor Fuller, Keaton Augustine, Ryan Hirschbock, Jacob James, Kiley Grimes, Keegan Bounds.

250s
Heat 1A-Trevor Grimes, Brionna Fuller, Braden Weiser, Drew Berry, Morgan Berry.

Heat 2A-Bodee Weiser, Vinny DeBenedetti, Kloey Smith, Taylor Fuller.

Heat 1B-Braden Weiser, Trevor Grimes, Drew Berry, Morgan Berry, Brionna Fuller.

Heat 2B-Bodee Weiser, Kloey Smith, Vinny DeBenedetti, Taylor Fuller.

Bragging Rights Dash-Bodee Weiser, Braden Weiser, Vinny DeBenedetti, Kloey Smith.

Main Event-Trevor Grimes, Bodee Weiser, Braden Weiser, Brionna Fuller, Vinny DeBenedetti, Kloey Smith, Drew Berry, Morgan Berry, Taylor Fuller.

500 Open
Heat 1A-Mike Wheeler, Johnny Burke, Dillen Lausen, Colby Bergquist.

Heat 1B-Johnny Burke, Mike Wheeler, Dillen Lausen, Colby Bergquist.

Bragging Rights Dash-Mike Wheeler, Dillen Lausen, Johnny Burke.

Main Event-Mike Wheeler, Kenny Boardman, Dillen Lausen, Marissa Hansen, Colby Bergquist (DNS), Johnny Burke (DNS).

UAS Speedway Karts
Heat 1A-Daniel Kravitz, Jeremy Brown, Trey Hornbrook, Ed Grubb, Larry Fuller.

Heat 1B-Daniel Kravitz, Trey Hornbrook, Jeremy Brown, Ed Grubb, Larry Fuller.

Main Event-Jeremy Brown, Daniel Kravitz, Steve Rambo, Ed Grubb, Trey Hornbrook, Larry Fuller.

206 Speedway Karts
Heat 1A-Lori Fuller, Steve Rambo.

Heat 1B-Steve Rambo, Lori Fuller.

Main Event-Steve Rambo, Lori Fuller.

KT100
Heat 1A-Steve Rambo, Phil Pfau, Libby Tower.

Heat 1B-Phil Pfau, Daniel Kravitz, Fred Meyer.

Bragging Rights Dash-Jeremy Brown, Steve Rambo, Libby Tower.

Main Event-Phil Pfau, Steve Rambo, Daniel Kravitz, Jeremy Brown, Brent Meyer.

 Nieman, Kennemore Open Diamond Mountain Speedway Season With Wins

Susanville, CA...May 12...Chris Nieman opened the 2018 season at Diamond Mountain Speedway in Susanville, California with a victory in the IMCA Modified Main Event. Neiman is the 2016 champion, and he had to hold off reigning track champion Matt Murphy to collect the win. Wade Kennemore brought it home third, followed by Larry McCracken, Galen Hainline, Jeff Chew, Steve Bejeck, Rob Robles and Boyd Murchison.

A small turnout at IMCA Sport Modifieds saw Bob Feller out run Jason Emmot for the Main Event victory. The duo ended up tied for the point lead last season.

2016 champion Richard Longacre outran Rick Higby to win the Hobby Stock Main Event as Joe Marlow finished third ahead of Rudy McGowan.

The best turn out of the night was offered by the Mini Stock division, and Kate Robertson scored the feature win ahead of Johnny Moya. Taylor Micone grabbed the final podium position in third, followed by Ryan Belli and Raymond Talavera. Cody Kennemore finished sixth, followed by Anthony Havland, Colton Chew, David Wilson and Larry Foster.

Racing will continue with a two day weekend event scheduled for June 15th and 16th. IMCA Modifieds, IMCA Sport Modifieds, Hobby Stocks and Mini Stocks are all on the card. Race track information can be found at www.lassencountyfair.org/interim-events/diamond-mountain-speedway/.



Marysville Raceway Unoffial Race Results May 19, 2018
360 Sprints

Results are not official
1     #7K Kenny Allen       
2     #71L Korey Lovell
3     #7B Brent Bjork
4     #21H Jeremy Hawes
5     #6W Billy Wallace
6     #49 Mike Monahan
7     #71JR Alec Justeson
8     #9 Peter Paulson
9     #16 Jimmy Steward
10     #5 Kenny Wanderstadt   
11     #15 Pat Harvey Jr
12     #8 Colby Wiesz           
13     #57B Bobby Butler       
14     #54 Kyle Standley       
15     #2 Wyatt Brown   

IMCA Sport Mod
Results are not official
1     #22M Damian Merritt       
2     #14 Howard Law
3     #12 Jimmy Ford
4     #58M Mike Merritt
5     #25 Raymond Benkowski

Hobby Stocks
Results are not official
1     #13 Kyle Cheney       
2     #21A Kyle Allen
3     #93 Mel Byers
4     #18 Jim Brookshire
5     #29 Shannon Collins
6     #55 Jeremiah Creedon
7     #41 David Caluya   
8     #18X Brain Compton           
9     #7 Anthony Doubledee

305 Sprints
Results are not official
1     #87 Tim Sherman Jr.       
2     #9S Rick Bray
3     #95 Anissa Curtice


Ukiah Speedway Unofficial Race Results May 19, 2018
Max 93.5 Classic Rock Night
PCS Late Models

Results are not official
1     #20 Cole Moore            
2     #8 Jason Romero
3     #88 Kolby Berry
4     #6 Mike Beeler
5     #27 John Moore
6     #14 John Dalerio
7     #3 Dave Bryd    
8     #28 Myles Anderson            
9     #1 Matt Wendt        
10     #22M David Miller        

Bombers
Results are not official
1     #88 Bob Mook        
2     #5 Jeff French
3     #3 Dave Land
4     #96 RJ Randall    
5     #51 Trevor Abella
6     #17 Robert Byers    
7     #8 Ericka Ray
8     #66 Jimmy Sorrels        
9     #B83 Tim McCann

Pro 4 Modifieds
Results are not official
1     #29 Mike Peterson            
2     #87 Marty Lewis            
3     #33 Bud Anderson        
4     #01 Jimmy Sorrels        
5     #15 Scott Brown
6     #14 Johnny Barker            
7     #8 Andy Leuzinger    

Jammers
Results are not official
1     #4 Raymond Taylor Jr             
2     #88J Justin Moran
3     #48 TJ Buzzard
4     #57K Kylei Keown
5     #23 Christian Sanchez
6     #70 Joshua Smalls    
7     #3 Jennifer Campbell
8     #20 Danny Helm Sr

Bandoleros
Results are not official
1     #44 Lane Anderson        
2     #51 Justin Sabol
3     #04 Billy Ray    
4     #72 Dylan Krug            
5     #07 Hannah Ray
6     #25 Sadie Krug


Placerville Speedway Unofficial Race Results May 19, 2018
Tilford Tribute
Limited Late Models

Results are not official
1     #37 Ray Trimble        
2     #32 Ryan McDaniel
3     #57 Rod Oliver
4     #92 Tom Tilford
5     #3 Eddie Gardner
6     #15J Jay Norton
7     #96M Matt Michelli
8     #28G Tyler Lightfoot
9     #23 Mike Lightfoot
10     #15 Dennis Ahart
11     #O7 Chris Anna
12     #55 Matt Davi        
13     #86K Kiely Ricardo        
14     #66 Jason Englund

Pure Stocks
Results are not official
1     #22K Jason Palmer        
2     #25 Orville Owens
3     #14 Scott Grunert
4     #29 Dan Jinkerson
5     #74 Russ Murphy
6     #30 Kevin Jinkerson
7     #X86 Dave Silva
8     #2 Ronnie Richards
9     #4 Lonnie Lennard
10     #17 Nick Baldwin        
11     #O8 Mike Stoeckle        
12     #11L Chris Van Roekel        
13     #16 Tommy Sturgon

B Modifieds
Results are not official
1     #38 KC Keller        
2     #29C Aaron Crowell
3     #17C Brian Cooper
4     #86 Phillip Shelby
5     #132 Brent Curran
6     #128 Keith Brown
7     #44 Tim Elias
8     #188 Kenny Shrader
9     #15F Les Friend
10     #96M Matt Micheli
11     #75 Andrew Peckham
12     #7J Fred Ryland
13     #7 Pattie Ryland

Trucks
Results are not official
1     #38 Derek Boarman        
2     #47 Jarred Van Bebber
3     #77 Aaron Rupley
4     #86 John Littlejohn
5     #12 Tom Stanwood
6     #5 Chris Schaa
7     #89 Megan Curtis

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Southern Oregon Speedway, Siskiyou Motor Speedway, Coos Bay Speedway Weekend Previews, More




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Busy Weekend Planned At Southern Oregon Speedway

White City, Oregon...On the heels of last week's Four Cylinder Frenzy event, Southern Oregon Speedway has an amazing lineup of racing on tap for this weekend. In addition to a big Outlaw Kart program on the little track on Friday night and Saturday afternoon, the Iron Giant Street Stocks are coming to town for the first round of their big eight race tour of various Oregon tracks. Joining the Street Stocks on the big speedway will be the Late Models, Southern Oregon Dwarf Cars, Valley Stor-All Late Model Lites and Mini Stocks.

The Iron Giant Street Stock Series, which is the brainchild of James Whitehouse and Chris Sine, brings together some of the best Street Stock racers from Oregon to run eight races at eight different tracks. Southern Oregon Speedway gets the season opener once again. Last season, it was Donald Schott winning the 50 lap race for the $1,000 first prize. Once again, the drivers will be running for $1,000 and a nice $500 runner-up prize.

Kyle Yaeck comes into this event as the driver to beat. He has won some of the biggest Street Stock races in the state over the past few seasons and is the reigning tour champion. Kyle finished second in last season's race and was perhaps the most interesting driver to watch on the track. Eric Jarnport won a good battle for second in the final standings ahead of Whitehouse last season as Sine and James Yankee rounded out the Top 5. Reports are that a field of 15-20 competitors are anticipated as drivers are itching to get a chance to race on the Jim Rodgers prepared 3/10 mile clay oval.

Not to be ignored in the mix is the exciting Late Model division. When 2014 Street Stock champion Miles Deubert had an opportunity to acquire the 2017 Madras Late Model championship car from Kyle Coen, he jumped at the chance. Running a little bit late on Saturday night, he made it in time to run his heat race. That race didn't go very well, but adjustments made leading up to the feature resulted in Deubert earning an impressive win ahead of reigning champion Nathan Augustine. John Dees and Mike Linder were looking good as well, and both drivers will be looking to win the Trophy Dash when the program starts this week. Other competitors to watch for include Bob Dees, Garrett Dees, Dave Foote and Don Garrett Jr.

David Steele has won the last eight Mini Stock Main Events in which he has started. This includes a five race win streak at Southern Oregon Speedway. Steele swept the event last week. Reigning champion Kristopher Mix had to settle for second, and he'll be looking to knock Steele out of the Winner's Circle this week. The rapidly improving Hunter Magnan, Michael McCloud, Garrett Fredrickson and 2013 champion Steve Goetz will be among the others to watch this week.

Eric Aos looked impressive in winning the Valley Stor-All Late Model Lites Main Event last week. He had smooth sailing ahead in winning by a wide margin. Championship hopeful Charlie Eaton struggled with motor problems early on, but he rebounded with a second place finish by making a last lap pass on Dusty Aos. Other drivers to watch for this week include Greg Arnold, Danny Prewitt and 2016 champion Lee Doty. Arnold is running #39 this year in memory of his friend and former Pro Stock racer Tim Law, who lost his battle with Cancer during the off-season.

The Southern Oregon Dwarf Car competitors have run a pair of races this season. It was Camden Robustelli getting it done with back-to-back Yreka wins. He is the early point leader, but he knows the competition will be tough. Some of the best Oregon racers converged on Cottage Grove last week, and SODCA championship hopeful Kalvin Morton held off two-time club champion Brock Peters to get the win. These two will be out to snap the Robustelli two race win streak, and other drivers to watch for this week include two-time champion Josh King, Ryan Smith, Chad Cardoza, Fred Hay, Randy Slater and Joe Sanders.

If you're looking for more racing, the little track will roar into action on Friday night with a two-day event that concludes on Saturday morning. The KT100s are coming in from Northern Oregon and Washington with a field of 20-plus competitors anticipated. The 206 Karts are also coming down. There will be big money on the line. The track will also run its various Cage Kart classes, and word is that we will be seeing several of the youngest drivers competing in the Beginners class. The Saturday portion of the show will also include the UAS Speedway Karts. The Main Events will run on Saturday based on the finishes from the preliminary races on Friday night. KT100s will also run a preliminary feature on Friday.

On the big track, gates open on Saturday at 5 p.m. with the Trophy Dashes scheduled to fire off at 7 p.m. General Admission is $12 with Seniors, Veterans and Juniors (6-12) $6. Children 5 and under are free. For the Kart program on Friday night and Saturday morning, General Admission is $10 and includes pit access. For further information, go to www.southernoregonspeedway.com.


 Siskiyou Speedway Has Armed Forces Night 
At The Races Saturday Night

Yreka, CA...After a week off, Siskiyou Speedway roars back into action with Armed Forces Night at the races. This is an event that offers a $1 ticket to any active or former military personnel with an ID. Fans will be treated to Calculated Comfort Outlaw Pro Stocks, IMCA Sport Modifieds, Mini Stocks and the first race for the Outlaw Open Comp division.

When last we left the speedway, the Calculated Comfort Outlaw Pro Stocks were providing a crowd-pleasing battle between Nevada Pro Stock competitor Mike Learn and reigning Outlaw Pro Stock champion Scott Lenz. Though Lenz was the leader at the halfway point of the race, he eventually lost the battle for the win to the flying Learn. Another driver looking good in the big show was Scott Flowers, who brought his car home to a third place finish.

2016 champion Steve Borror won the season opener to take an early lead in the point race, but his Billy Geyer Memorial Race performance was less than stellar. Steve still figures to be the man to beat this Saturday night. Another driver looking good in the Geyer Race was Matt Harlow, who finished fourth. It should be a great night of racing, and other Pro Stock drivers to watch this week include James Flowers, John David Duffie, Scott Bennett, Johnny Cobb and Dean Hackworth.

In three IMCA Sport Modified events, we have three different winners with Jorddon Braatten, Justin Foux and reigning champion DJ Bottoms taking their turns in the Winner's Circle. Bottoms made his season debut last time out and entertained the fans with a good battle with Trevor Tiffee for the lead during the first half of the race. Bottoms has much ground to make up as the consistent Rich McCoy is the point leader with three consecutive Top 3 finishes.

Tiffee and second-generation racer Ryder Boswell are both very much in the championship hunt this season. Both drivers will be looking for their first career win in this class. Boswell is a past Mini Stock feature winner. Other drivers to watch for this week include Jimmy Lipke, Garrett Hamilton, Isaac Sanders and Matt Sanders. We're still anticipating the debut of Mini Stock star Ethan Killingsworth, among others.

Speaking of the Mini Stock division, the three drivers you would expect to be at the front of the championship battle are not disappointing. Last time out, two-time reigning champion Marilyn Yawnick picked up the victory ahead of hard charger Terry Kendrick. Kendrick is a past champion and was on a pace for a clean sweep before being bested by Yawnick in the feature. These two drivers and 2014 champion "Magic" Mike Whitaker are very much in the hunt.

After his second Top 5 feature finish, Mike Frost is hanging tough in the battle as well. Unlike the three other three contenders, Mike is still looking for his first feature win. The division also has a couple of teen competitors in the field as Darrick Alford and Zac McMurray were making good laps in the most recent event. Other drivers to watch for this week include Dennis Jorgensen and Jason Frost.

Rounding out the field will be the Outlaw Open Comp division. We're not sure who will be competing in this race, but the relaxed rule set opens the field for many potential cars that don't meet rules requirements in other classes to come and compete.

There is also some news from the Outlaw Kart track. This Friday's scheduled race has been cancelled to enable racers to go compete in the big event in Medford. Furthermore, scheduling has been adjusted for the rest of the season to avoid conflicts with the Medford track. Wins in the most recent Main Events at the Kart track went to Mike Wheeler Jr (Beginner's Sealed), Chayce Smith (Beginners Open), Taylor Fuller (Box Stock), Carley Holmes (250cc), Tanner Holmes (500 Open) and Brionna Fuller (Speedway).

It should be a great night of racing, and this is the final tune-up before the big John Arnberg/Bo Hittson/Mike Caveye Memorial event on Memorial Day Weekend. Siskiyou Speedway will be the place to be on Saturday night. For further information, go to www.siskiyoumotorspeedway.com.


NASCAR Racing Returns To Coos Bay Speedway 
Saturday night

Coos Bay, Oregon...The Whelen All American Series is back at the dirt oval at Coos Bay Speedway this Saturday night. In addition to that, there will be bike and Hot Wheel giveaways to some lucky kids. Featured divisions include the Super Late Models, Winged Sprint Cars, Sportsman Late Models, Street Stocks, Mini Outlaws and Hornets.

Last season, Brody Montgomery was a force in the Sportsman Late Model division. While he was winning that championship, Montgomery also started competing in the Super Late Model division. This year, the young charger has set his sights on the Super Late Model championship. After three events, he has two Main Event victories. This has put him 16 points ahead of the steady Chris Ray. We also have a good battle going on for third between Thor Kristensen and Richard Wallace. Kristensen is leading that race by just eight points. We saw the season debut of Kristy Grout last time out as well as two-time Sportsman Late Model champion Wayne Butler.

For the Sprint Car division, this is also the opening weekend for the Interstate Sprint Car Series, and word is that we will be seeing some competitors from Cottage Grove for this race. Actually, a Cottage Grove competitor won the first race this season as young gun Ian Bandy outran Steven Snawder that night. The most recent win went to reigning champion Lawrence Van Hoof. However, a look at the point sheet finds rookie Kayla Green leading Brett Hulsey by four points. Green and Hulsey are the only drivers with two Top 5 finishes. Mike Crawford is only 12 tallies out of the lead, and other local competitors to watch for this week include past champion Dave May and Donovan Prather.

Wayne Butler is a two-time Sportsman Late Model champion, but he's not the one leading the points so far this season. Despite winning two Main Events, a bad night has left Butler 46 points behind Dyllan Siewell in the championship chase. Siewell is also a Main Event winner this season. Patrick Nagel made his debut in the most recent event but was done after the heat races. Charlie Withers and longtime speedway competitor Tom Williams are other drivers to watch for this week.

Ken Fox couldn't buy a win last season despite having a Top 3 point effort. He opened this season with a Main Event win. A two division racer last season,  Fox has been focused on his Street Stock ride, and he is the only driver with three Top 5 finishes in three starts. His other two finishes ended in second place. The battle is behind him as he holds a 62 point lead over Troy Chamberlain, who is one of the other Main Event winners this season. Chamberlain leads David Smith by two points and Jeff Thurman by six tallies. 2016 champion Daniel Land is the other feature winner.

Though two-time reigning Mini Outlaw champion Sam Talon is a two-time feature winner, he still chases one time winner John Henry in the point battle. Due to a non start, Talon trails Henry by 44 points. The battle should continue between these two this week, and other racers to watch for include Dan Daniels, Jason Kellum and Carl Johnson. Still yet to race this season is the potent VW Beetle of Rob Lauver.

In the Hornet division, "Hurricane" Hannah Robison finally broke through to get her first career feature victory last time out. Robison was third in the standings last season and figured to be one of the drivers to beat this year. Despite two bad nights this season, she is fourth in the standings, 20 behind the consistent David Pellum. Rookie Kylea Krossman is only 12 points out of lead, while "Lady Venom" April Warmack is 16 points back in third. Braden Fugate is the third different winner this season, and other racers to watch this week include Tyler Tullos, Chris Parker and Andrew Grisham.

There's a lot of fan friendly things happening at Coos Bay Speedway on any given week. Promoter Drake Nelson and his crew endeavor to make Saturday night at the races fun for everybody. This week should be no different. For further information, go to www.coosbayspeedway.us.


California Hardtops To Compete On Tilford Tribute Night 
At Placerville Speedway

Placerville, CA..The California Hardtop Association has been invited to be a part of the big Stock Car themed night at Placerville Speedway this Saturday night. It's the Annual Donnie Tilford Tribute race. Through the years, Donnie Tilford won many races at the speedway and is shown as the all-time win leader on the track's Pure Stock/ Super Stock win list with 71 victories. Tilford died peacefully in his sleep from heart complications back in 2014, and speedway management created this event as a marquee program for the Stock Car divisions that Tilford and his family have enjoyed so much through the years.

The California Hardtop racers enjoy competing at Placerville Speedway and being a part of such a prestigious event. A field of anywhere from 8 to 12 racers is anticipated for the coming event. In their last Placerville visit in April, the group fielded 13 cars with 12 of them taking the checkered flag. At the front of the pack, it was Dave Reed getting the win that night ahead of Ken Retzloff and Ron Ruiz.

Presently, Ruiz is on a bit of a roll with two straight victories. On the pavement of Stockton 99 Speedway, Ruiz won by a wide margin ahead of Jason Armstrong and Dave Stewart. Roger MacShain had been running third before pitting, but he returned to the Merced race and picked up a second place finish behind the flying Ruiz. It was Joe Shenefield cruising to a third place finish that night.

The Merced visit wasn't very pretty for the group. The race track had been watered prior to them getting on the track, and there was some confusion between officials and drivers about whether they were ready to go racing or pack the track in for a couple more laps. Leading the pack on the pole, Ken Clifford had given them a thumbs down, but the green flag waved next time by. A couple laps later, disaster struck when Reed spun into Turn 1 and Clifford hit him hard, doing severe damage to the front end of the Clifford mount. Jason Armstrong was also done after the incident.

Dave Mackey, who had a second place finish behind Ken Retzloff recently in Antioch, led for a few laps before pitting to give the lead to Ruiz. After assessing the damage to the race cars, the California Hardtop Association decided to cancel the visit that was scheduled for Stockton 99 Speedway last week. They wanted to produce a good field of cars for their next event, and there was concern that there wouldn't be enough cars for the show.

Already, there have been 16 different drivers to compete in the first four Hardtop races this year. A strong turnout is anticipated for Placerville Speedway this week, and other drivers to watch for include Rhett Lange, Dennis Armstrong, Larry Wells, Tom Grady and Jason Clifford. This Saturday's Tilford Tribute Race is already shaping up to be a great Stock Car program. With these beautiful California Hardtops on the card, it will be that much better.


Pit Stops

Southern Oregon Speedway will be saying goodbye to perhaps the most charismatic race car at the track. The blue #007 Pinto Wagon is being retired. For the past couple of seasons, Andrew Hall has done a heck of a job wheeling that car around the race track. He's won heat races and a Trophy Dash with it and came within one position of winning the Main Event on multiple occasions. He was third in the standings in 2016.

This season, Cameron Hall was making his racing debut in that car. It can be challenging being a rookie and racing as it is, but driving that car makes it even more challenging. It is fast, but it can get away from you in the turns quite easily. Cameron found that out the hard way in a heat race last Saturday night. It was going well enough when he passed David Steele for the second position.

However, Cameron got a bit sideways coming out of Turn 2, and the car came around on him. A little bit further back, Steve Goetz with coming up on him and didn't see him in time. With no place else to go, Goetz T-boned Hall, ending the night for both drivers. The driver's side door caved in on Hall, but fortunately he was okay. Andrew Hall is already looking for a replacement car to get back out to the track, though there is no ETA on when that might happen.

For Goetz, he went into the night feeling pretty good about the way the car was running. He's had two starts this season, a second in Yreka and the second at Southern Oregon Speedway. He had hopes of beating teammate David Steele in the Main Event, but sadly, it was not to be. While Steve loaded up and headed home, Steele was doing what he does best, winning races. He won the Trophy Dash, heat race and Main Event as he continues to work on building up his point lead. All told, Steele has won the last eight Main Events in which he has started, including the last five races at Southern Oregon Speedway.

Hunter Magnan, meanwhile, is getting used to the power of the car that he bought late last season. He knew he needed something better if he wanted to have a chance to win, and this purchase has turned out to be a good one. With a fourth place finish in the opener, Hunter was aiming higher in the latest Main Event. However, he's still learning the handle on the car and spun on multiple occasions. After his last spin in the Main Event, Hunter decided to get going rather than wait for the yellow flag that might have been followed by a black flag. He reeled in Michael McCloud and made the pass for third.

It was another second place finish for Kristopher Mix. This was the second time in the last 2 years for Mix to get a second, but he's hungry for the win. With Steele looking as fast as he is, Mix knows that he's going to have to start winning some races if he hopes to keep up in the championship chase. He may also be the driver with the best hope of beating Steele for the championship. From the looks of things, it may be easier said than done.

About 15 years ago there was a driver in the #39 car named Tim Law. Law competed in the Pro Stock division for a few seasons. Though he wasn't one of the front-runners in the Main Event, he was a regular competitor and a friend to 2002 Super Truck champion Greg Arnold. Sadly, Law lost his battle with Cancer during the offseason, and Arnold has decided to pay tribute to him by changing his number and running a similar color to Law on his Late Model Lite. Though Greg started his night off with a second in the heat race, mechanical issues dropped him out of the Valley Stor-All Late Model Litres Main Event early.

One of the drivers hoping that this will be his year for the championship is Charlie Eaton. He has been one of the more consistent racers over the past two seasons, but a Main Event victory has thus far eluded him. His night didn't start off very well as he was having motor issues in hot laps and into the heat race. Come Main Event time, he was having a nice little battle for second with Arnold and second-year racer Dusty Aos. As Arnold fell out, Aos was still hanging on to second until Eaton made a last lap pass to grab the spot.

Since Dusty didn't have his car ready in time, he was able to drive the #99 car that has been driven by Bill Spencer during the past couple of seasons. The #3 car should be ready shortly. It was the #66 car of Eric Aos who was the class of the field. Eric turned in a dominant performance in winning the Main Event by a wide margin after winning the heat race earlier.

There were some drivers missing that we will hopefully see soon. Arnold reports that this is a new car that he bought from the Willamette area and that his older car should be out with a new driver this season. Likewise, 2014 champion John Barger plans to return, and we should be seeing 2016 champion Lee Doty as well. Hopefully, we'll see a few more cars in the pits this Saturday night.

The Ferrando family has been the driving force in keeping the Pro 4 West Modified division going for many years. The division has its roots running at several outdoor venues throughout Oregon, and they even competed at Southern Oregon Speedway back in its first season in 1996. Not surprisingly, a Ferrando won that race. In this case, it was Co Ferrando.

Last season, the group made one appearance, but a tow vehicle breakdown kept family patriarch Papa Tom Ferrando out of the action. The 80 year old competitor did make it this time, but all was not right with his car. He spent several laps in the Main Event trying to diagnose the problem before pitting. Papa Tom is the 2017 Salem indoors champion.

Salem indoors is where this division has raced mainly in recent years, and the Ferrando family has won the last four championships. The year, it was Thomas Ferrando laying claim to the title, and he drove to a third place finish on Saturday night. Tobey Ferrando, who won the Southern Oregon Speedway appearance last season, won the championship in 2016. However, it wasn't a Ferrrando getting any of the glory on Saturday night.

Rick Wagner was debuting a new Pinto for this race, allowing Chris Tofte to drive the #03 car that Rick had been racing indoors this season. Barry Lampert was driving a fast Pinto as well. Prior to the races, Barry remarked that he had been running with another group when he was invited to come run with the Pro West Modifieds during the most recent Salem Indoor season. He jumped at the chance, and he has enjoyed every minute of it. Barry did win the heat race and led several laps of the Main Event.

The Main Event was a bit of an adventure for Wagner, who spun a couple of times early in the race before gathering momentum. Wagner ran with Lampert for several lap before making the winning pass and bringing it home to the victory. These Pro 4 West Modifieds run bigger tires and are running laps quicker than the track's regular Mini Stock division. Though this is their lone appearance at Southern Oregon Speedway this year, they are hoping to get more outdoor races in the future and will likely be back for a visit again next season.

Chances are, if you were talking about a member of the Hedges family winning a JOAT Labs Hornets Main Event in the early goings of the season, you were talking about 2016 champion Tim Hedges or his 2017 "Rookie Of The Year" award winning wife Jenna Hedges. However, son Ashtin Hedges had a bold proclamation prior to the season opener. He said he was going to win. He held off his father to win his heat race that night, but he wasn't done just yet.

Last week, Ashtin was at it again. This time, he held off reigning champion Jason Stoutenburgh to win his second heat race. This put Ashtin on the front row of the Main Event next to his mother Jenna, who was also a heat race winner. When the green flag waved, Ashtin wasn't waiting to see his mother pull up next to him. He charged into the lead. Soon, Stoutenburgh was there making the challenge, and season-opening winner Brandon Wonsyld wasn't far behind. However, Ashton was not phased in the least. He has a new car this season, and he led every lap to pick up his first career victory.

Wonsyld, who is teammates with second generation competitor Dylan Irving, is off to a strong start. After beating Stoutenburgh in the opener, Wonsyld made a late move around him to stake his claim on second in the Main Event. Brandon is now the point leader, but Stoutenburgh is a very close second. Though you have to believe Jason is due for a win, there are some fast drivers in this field. Most of the 14 competitors on hand in the most recent race are capable of winning on any given week.

You're still going to find members of the Hedges and Nelson family right in the middle of things. Jenna Hedges recovered from a disappointing season opener for a fourth place finish, while Tim Hedges ended up fifth. Tim kept the Mini Stock at home as he makes repairs for his second start in that class, and he's also preparing a new Hornet. He speaks of retiring the #4t car when his new Hornet is ready. However, last season, Gabe Nelson finally made his first start in that car. One has to wonder if the #4t car might have a little bit more life left in it with the young teen behind the wheel.

We got word that one of Gabe's older brothers, Ryan Nelson, should be ready for his debut when the division returns on June 2nd. Meanwhile, Zach Nelson is still looking good out there as he drove to a seventh place finish last week. This follows up the fourth place finish he had in the opener despite a brush with the front wall as he battled third place finisher Dylan Irving to the end. That's still much better than their father, Derrel Nelson Jr. Derrel figures to be a factor in the race for wins, but he needs to keep the air in his tires. While running along in the Top 5 yet again, he had to make a pit stop with another flat tire. He ended up a lead lap 11th.

Ashland High was represented by two cars once again. The popular PT Cruiser was back again, this time piloted by John Ferreira. John was making his first start and brought it home to a tenth place finish. Meanwhile, Ethan Doty finished further up in the eighth spot. It's great to see that we have a high school auto shop class wanting to be involved in the wonderful sport of racing. It's also great to see that we have at least a few teens who want to be involved in racing. Chris Boynton looked a little bit better in his second start as he took a checkered flag in sixth, while teammate Bree Tritchler took a checkered flag in ninth.

There was plenty of excitement in the air with the Late Model division. When 2014 Street Stock champion Miles Deubert showed up late, it's likely that nobody was expecting much from him so soon. Miles, who won a pair of Pro Stock Main Events at the track in 2016, jumped at the chance to buy the 2017 Madras Late Model championship car of Kyle Coen. After a disappointing heat race, he started back in the fourth row in the Main Event. Again, nobody was expecting much from Miles at that point.

However, the second generation racer has a few tricks up his sleeve when it comes to setting up a race car. He had already figured things out well enough and was creeping his way through the pack when early leader John Dees looped it in Turn 3. Miles was 3rd at that point and quickly moved into second. The thing was, reigning champion Nathan Augustine was in the lead. One might have expected that Augustine had the race won at that point. That's a false assumption. Deubert was reeling him in until he finally caught him and passed him on lap 20. In only his first start in a full Late Model, Deubert is a Main Event winner.

Heat races were won by longtime competitor Mike Linder and John Dees. Linder ran in the Top 3 for most of the race, but Dees was making up for his early spin as he worked his way up to Linder. A late pass resulted in Dees grabbing the third place finish. However, fourth is good enough to put Linder in the Trophy Dash this week.

The Main Event didn't end so well for Bob Dees, who pitted from a Top 5 spot late in the race, handing the fifth position to Garrett Dees. Eric Massey was making his first start in the class and unfortunately fell out very early and was soon joined in the pits by Don Garrett Jr.

Lots of rumors are flying around about racers in this class. Chris Biggs sold his car prior to the season, but he has another car he should be debuting real soon. We're also hearing of two past champions coming out in Late Models, though at this point we'll keep mum on the names until we hear more information. In either case, Late Models will be part of the show this weekend.

Of course, the big news that's been reported elsewhere here is that the Street Stocks are coming back to Southern Oregon Speedway this Saturday night. It's Disorder On The Southern Border II for The Iron Giant Street Stock Series. Chris Sine and James Winehouse have put together a rather impressive tour of eight events at as many race tracks. Southern Oregon Speedway once again kicks this thing off with a 50 lap race that will pay $1,000 to win. The series culminates at Willamette Speedway in September with the Big Iron Giant Race.

Reports are that we will see a bigger car count than last season as a field of 15 to 20 competitors is anticipated. Kyle Yaeck will head the field as the reigning champion. He's won several big events during the past two seasons and was an entertaining second in last year's Southern Oregon visit behind winner Donald Schott. Though the field wasn't big last year, most of the drivers ran closely at the front of the pack.

They left Southern Oregon Speedway with high marks for the track, which is causing other drivers who were in "wait-and-see mode" to talk about racing this time. Eric Jarnport managed to hold off Whitehouse by just six points to finish second last season as Sine and Jessie Yankee were also in the Top 5 in the standings.

We've heard rumors that both David Cronk and Brian Cronk will be coming. Brian Cronk actually confirmed that he has a ride in Jody Tanner's #36 car as his car isn't quite ready yet. Brian won the Street Stock portion of the Clair Cup at Willamette last season. David Cronk won the Battle At The Beach Iron Giant Series race at Coos Bay last season.

One of the last drivers to go down with the ship when Southern Oregon Speedway last had a regular Street Stock division is Garrett Dees. He ran the class during the last two seasons at his home track and then competed at some of the other tracks up north after that. In fact, Garrett was practicing earlier this year with his Street Stock at Sunset Speedway.

As was the case last year around this time, local Street Stock enthusiasts are speculating about what could be at their home track. The question is, who still has cars sitting around waiting to be driven? If you're looking to make a statement, Saturday night is the night to do it.

Meanwhile, little Southern Oregon Speedway will get its opportunity to shine this weekend as well. It's been a few years since a 2 day program was held on the smaller track, but thanks to sponsorship from Speed City in Medford, this is exactly what will happen. The KT100 class from up north will be competing for a big money race, and the 206s are coming down with them. The track's regular Outlaw Kart program as well as UAS Speedway Karts are also part of this program that will run preliminaries for most divisions on Friday night and Main Events on Saturday morning. The KT100s will get a preliminary feature on Friday.

Once again, the biggest buzz for the Cage Kart program is being generated by the Beginners Box Stock class. Several youngsters are just getting started, including the son of one of the biggest names In Kart racing in the area in recent years, Mike Wheeler Jr. Little Mike has won the last two Main Events in Yreka. Another driver anticipated this week is reigning Yreka Indoor champion Carson Henson. Of course, the reigning champion in the class is Malachi Johnson, who won the final three Main Events last season. Among the names we are hearing are Jamie DeBenedetti, Jacob James and 2016 champion Kiley Grimes. There is reportedly another Grimes sibling making a debut this season.

In the Box stock class, Three-time champion Trevor Grimes is expected to be moving up completely to the 250 class, leaving a new battle for championship glory. Keaton Augustine was a one-time winner last season who might be considered the driver to beat. However, reigning Yreka champion Tayler Fuller may have something to say about that. Sophia Bauer is among the other racers anticipated for the opener.

Mike Weiser reports that his boys, 2016 champion Bodee Weiser and Braden Weiser, will be there for the opener to do battle with Grimes and Vinny DeBenedetti. Another driver to watch will be reigning Yreka Indoor champion Cadyn Smith. We're unsure of the status of there-time 2017 feature winner Carley Holmes, but we know she'll be fast if she's there. Carley won the most recent race at Yreka

There is much uncertainty regarding the 500 Open class. It's known that there are 12 to 16 Karts in the area, but getting them to come race is another matter. If Tanner Holmes doesn't have a big race somewhere else, it's possible we'll see him. Kenny Boardman Is another possibility as is Mike Wheeler. Others who could be there include Jeffrey Hudson, Wyatt Pinckney and 2016 champion Johnny Burke. All will be answered on race day.

The Fuller family brings several Speedway Karts to the race track, and three of them are usually driven by Lori Fuller, Larry Fuller and Brionna Fuller. Brionna also drives a 250 Kart. Steve Rambo enthusiastically supports the Speedway Kart effort, often times with a second Kart driven by Johnny Hoult. These are some of the drivers to watch for this weekend.

While the Kart program gets started this weekend and looks to be a go for the first May race In 3 years, Coos Bay Speedway Is ready for a NASCAR Whelen All American Series race. We've noticed the effort of Drake Nelson to promote that track, and we give him high marks. Chuck Prather did much to establish some good things at Coos Bay, and Drake continues those efforts and has added several nice touches. It's all about family atmosphere, and Nelson has coordinated a bike giveaway for the kids this weekend.

Promoting racing in Coos Bay can be a challenge since, as some long-time promoters have observed, half of your base is in the ocean, but it's not impossible to make it work. Nelson has managed to make Coos Bay Speedway a place race fans in the area want to be by offering a nice variety of different types of race cars. Fans get a little taste of everything on any given race night, and it's NASCAR sanctioned. The drivers who support racing there compete for some nice point fund money at the end of the season.

We spoke in another column of the point battles at Coos Bay Speedway, but of interest is the Interstate Sprint Car Series happening this Saturday. The first race for the series is on Friday night at Cottage Grove. The Series looked to be dead when Southern Oregon Speedway found it in their best interest to remove themselves from being affiliated with the Crockett Motorsports promoted effort.

Brian Crockett decided not to let it go and rounded up enough sponsorship to make each Interstate Sprint Car Series win worth $1,000 and a minimum of $150 to start. The pressure will be on the Cottage Grove competitors to go to the different race tracks. It's not expected that many Medford area racers will come, nor are many Coos Bay racers anticipated at the other tracks. So just what is this series going to be about? You know you will get a car count at Cottage Grove. Last weekend, there were 25 cars for the race, including five from Southern Oregon.

The real test won't be the Fast Friday race at Cottage Grove. The real test will be how many racers tow to Coos Bay. You'll likely find 6 to 10 track regulars at Coos Bay. Looking to give his fans something to see, Drake Nelson jumped at the chance to get three dates, which included a Speedweek race in August. If the show reaches 15 or 16 cars, you won't likely see much disappointment from Nelson. Are there a half a dozen or so competitors from Cottage Grove willing to go to Coos Bay? That's very possible. It could make the Sprint Car show there worth the trip this Saturday night.

If there's a disappointment In the Coos Bay situation it might be the less-than-stellar support offered to the NASCAR Super Late Model division. Considering Mike George won $6,000 for his 2017 championship, you might have expected car count to at least hit double digits this year. It hasn't happened yet, and George has picked Cottage Grove over Coos Bay on multiple occasions this year. Coos Bay is still getting five or six cars. If the locals got behind the effort, there could still be 10 cars racing for the NASCAR prize. It's not by lack of effort by Nelson that the cars haven't supported certain divisions. He's done everything he can.

In one final note, we got information on the big Memorial Day Weekend race at Yreka. The only question that wasn't answered was whether both nights will count for points. They did last season, and that would certainly help the track have an official IMCA Modified point race this year. It is the John Arnberg Memorial Race, meaning you will likely see some IMCA Modified driver support for this event. Last season, both nights were won by Nick Trenchard. If he wins the Arneberg Memorial this year, he will pocket $1,038. Second place will get $750 and third will pocket $500 among the money that's on the line. The Bo Hittson Memorial has been a part of the program for several years and was once a Street Stock race before being passed to the IMCA Sport Modifieds. Jorddon Braaten won the money last season. If he wins it again, it's worth $750, while second is worth $500 and third is worth $300. Sunday is the bigger money day, while Saturday is a regular money day. Even the Mini Stocks get more money with $202 going to the winner of the Mike Cavaye Memorial on Sunday. It will be Yreka's night to shine.


The Editor's Viewpoint

We've been running this column over on the DCRR blog for the past few weeks, but this time we have some Jefferson area observations to make. It's interesting to note that the Interstate Sprint Car Series is happening this weekend. The opener is at Cottage Grove Speedway on Friday night and the second event will be on Saturday night at Coos Bay Speedway. There's some interesting stories to tell about this whole deal.

Actually, I find it very interesting that this effort is here to make something bigger out of the Limited Sprint movement, and the opener is on a Friday night at Cottage Grove Speedway with a $5 ticket price. Generally speaking, you don't practically give away marquee events. In this particular case, the IMCA Modifieds are the co-headliners. Limited Sprints delivered 25 cars at Cottage Grove at the most recent race, so fans would be foolish not to pay $5 to come watch that race if they can.

I do understand from a promotional standpoint that you do certain things like this to get fans to come out. Cottage Grove is notorious for offering little perks here and there throughout the season. On one level, when you look at it from a fan's point of view, it's a good thing. From a promoter's point of view, you're practically giving away the shop. Look at it this way. How often do you go to a restaurant and get a half price deal on a really nice meal? How often do you go to the movies and get a special half price discount on an evening at the movies? And I'm not talking about matinee here.

Personally, I think that it is good for a race track to do one or two of these types of things during the year, but you can go overboard. Cottage Grove has a strong base of fans, and it's not really necessary to give away the shop, as it were. They're coming anyway. And, I think it devalues a program a little bit when you're giving away a supposedly big series opener for such a small ticket price.

I can relate an anecdote from Chowchilla Speedway when I was there in the beginning back in 2000. Tom Sagmiller, who promoted the track back then, had a $5 ticket price. The reason behind that was because Chowchilla had no racing tradition to speak of, so having tickets at half price compared to some of the other tracks in the area was his gimmick. While you might get 50 to 100 curious fans to see how things were for $10, more fans took a chance at $5. Now, the neighboring promoters threw a fit because he was giving away the shop.

I can see the merit in trying to get people to come out as you build up your fan base, but Tom encountered a problem. Local racing legend and big event promoter George Steitz stepped in with some big marquee events, but the fans were going to pay more than $5 to get in. And what happened was the local fans started throwing a fit. Why is it so much? Well, you see, you're getting over 100 cars at the big season ending event where you might get 40 to 50 on a regular night. What do you expect?

I'll probably offend some people with this comment, but from a promoter's standpoint, racing is a business. Yes, you get into it because you love the sport and think you can make a difference, but it is a business. If overall you're spending more money than you're taking in and you don't have a mountain of money to back you up, you will go out of business. Bottom line. Racers are generally going to look at it from their point of view from the car in the garage. The promoter has to look at an entirely different and bigger picture. So, a discount here or there for a special night isn't a bad idea, but there are limitations. I would never get into the business with expectations that I had to discount so many nights. If you're a racing fan, you'll find a way to go to the races. If we book too many races for people to support, I might look at scaling back my schedule, but I need to take in money to pay the bills too. So, leaving money on the table in the form of discounts for the fans too many times is going to hurt my bottom line. If we run a racing program that people enjoy, they will pay to watch it. If not, we're in the wrong business anyway

I say that in all due respect to Heather. She has a pretty hefty price tag to pay to rent that track, and she's trying to get money in every way possible. Cottage Grove is one of the crown jewels of the West Coast dirt track scene. It is a track that deservedly is held above as the standard when people talk about who's doing it right. Heather didn't create that. It was created a long time ago, and I might suggest that current Southern Oregon Speedway promoter Mike McCann had a lot to do with that. The fact that Cottage Grove Speedway has become the mecca, as it were, of Sprint Car racing in Oregon is due to the fact that Mike established the Sprint Car program there in the late 1980s. People tend to forget all the he's done and look at him as a sometimes crotchety old man. You know the type that might sit on his front porch and yell at a kid retrieving their football from his grass. "Hey you, get off of my lawn."

Anyway, this wasn't the main point I wanted to make. The Interstate Sprint Car Series probably would have been dead. It had a couple of years where it mattered a little bit, but it was a dead entity. What has happened in Oregon is the Sprint Car scene has slowly died on the vine due to two particular leaders who have done nothing to really help things. There's one on the non-wing side that I won't get into here and the other on the winged side that some people proclaim to be some sort of guru. I won't dispute his racing record in California, but I think he does more harm than good to the movement. I'll leave the rest of that opinion for another time.

Southern Oregon Speedway has been working to establish a Sprint Car program, and what was done in the very beginning when Mike McCann took over as promoter in 2016 was to run an open set of rules and see who would come. However, the guru of the Sprint Car scene advised others not to run for the purse that he was offering because it would hurt the cause in his opinion. Nevermind the fact that if the locals would support this class and it grew, their purse would go up as the crowd went up. Too much me, me, me attitude. Forget the track, it's about me and the parts and things that I sell. That guy doesn't even come to Southern Oregon Speedway, but he was able to manipulate opinions. It's an interesting and disgusting story that I'll save for some other time.

David Hibbard is a good Sprint Car supporter who has run Cottage Grove for several years. He also recognized that the limited rules package would help grow the class in Medford. He urged McCann to consider a rule change in that direction in 2017 and then put his money where his mouth is. But David is also a big dreamer like myself. He saw the growth in the class last season and thought that a big series between the tracks in Oregon would be a good thing. In theory, it will be eventually.

My concern with the whole thing was Southern Oregon Speedway was coming off of one good year. One good year. Another year or two is needed to see if that one year is a trend or just an isolated situation. Cottage Grove was only doing slightly better numbers and could probably benefit from another year or two of building the class up. So, even if a series might be a good idea, I question whether the time was now. Sprint Cars are an integral part to helping build up the fan base in the racing program in general at Southern Oregon Speedway. Every division matters, but the Sprint Cars are certainly something the fans will come to see due to their speed.

David wanted to start the series, and he was fixated on the idea that a name brand was needed. Therefore, he got it in his head that purchasing the Interstate Sprint Car Series brand name would help in his goal to create a series for the Sprint Cars under the limited rules package. The idea of a Speedweek and all of that was then floated. Brian Crockett is the one who owns that brand name, and unfortunately, communication was not what it should have been. What David succeeded in doing was getting Brian to think that he had value with that series name and to second-guess selling to David, though a verbal agreement was made. Finally understanding what was going on, Hibbard walked away from the Interstate Sprint Car Series. This left the question as to whether Southern Oregon Speedway would participate in the series or the Speedweek, and management opted to go in another direction.

Where Southern Oregon Speedway came out with something positive in the whole situation was the Ironhead Nationals event on August 11th. The winner will take home $2,000, making it the biggest Sprint Car race under the limited rules package the track has ever had. Now, I've heard people ask why the track doesn't have any full on 360 Sprint Car races, but it can be boiled down to this. Car count isn't big enough to justify the purse this class demands. You want a 360 Sprint Car race, remove your wing and run the August 25th Herz Precision Parts Wingless Sprint Car Challenge Race. It pays $3,500 to win. The idea of removing a wing intimidates some of the people in Oregon, but it was a good show last year and should be again this year.

Without Southern Oregon Speedway on the schedule, it was decided to move ahead with Cottage Grove and Coos Bay Speedway as two of the primary ISCS tracks. Will enough drivers from Cottage Grove tow? That's the question. The Speedweek portion of the program will have cars coming from the Sportsman Sprints in Washington. Just how many of those drivers are willing to come to Oregon, we'll have to see. From Oregon, their base of cars is now Cottage Grove and the few cars that are at Coos Bay or are willing to tow from the Medford area when Southern Oregon Speedway isn't racing. I doubt you'll see Coos Bay drivers going anywhere other than Coos Bay, so that means who from Cottage Grove wants to run a series that is on shaky ground?

Promoter Drake Nelson is counting on getting a little bit more out of his Sprint Car show on these three dates, the first of which is Saturday night. It's not that he even expects to see a 20 car show, though I know he would be ecstatic for such an occurrence. He has six to eight cars that will probably be there regardless, and if another half a dozen or more cars come, I think that he and the fans of Coos Bay will be happy.

The important thing to remember in all of this is that the Sprint Car situation in Oregon is suffering. It has seen better days, and it can have better days again. The limited rules package is important to the revival. I have had conversations with people in the 360 Sprint Car camp who would like to see more dates at Southern Oregon Speedway. I understand that. I also understand that as the limited rules package gets cars in that classification, drivers will be looking to open it up just a little bit more. Winged 360 Sprint Cars can gain from that. However, a change is needed in the leadership of the Winged 360 movement for this thing to really and truly thrive. Even the 360 Sprint Car Speedweek is a shadow of its former self. Because of that, I understand why somebody would want to try and do it with Limited Sprints, but the division isn't quite there yet, in my opinion.

Speedweek Is a pretty cool idea, I get that. In California, the Northern Auto Racing Club 410 Sprint Cars had one heck of a Speedweek for years. And that's what inspired Oregon to start its own Speedweek that was successful in the early years. Right now, the IMCA Modified Wild West Speedweek is the big draw, but even it is in danger of falling off as numbers were down slightly last year. The big problem is promoters have to run races during the week, and the crowd inevitably falls off as people have to work. It makes it difficult for promoters to book it when they can't get the money coming through the gates. I still feel that given a couple of years to grow, the Limited Sprint Speedweek idea might not be a bad thing. Or, you can make Sprint Car Speedweek a Winged 360 and Limited Sprint deal.

The idea I heard floated that I found very interesting was a Late Model Speedweek. Oregon actually has a better Late Model situation than California. I find that remarkable. I also like that the state of Oregon has a true Street Stock division compared to California, where the class has evolved into Pro Stocks and Super Stocks. I'll get to that point in a moment. But a Late Model Speedweek, could it work? In my opinion, yes it could. The key is what Oregon promotional guru, Jerry Schram would go for. Willamette has been known as the Late Model capital of Oregon for years. It starts from there. Then, you have Sunset, Madras, Cottage Grove, Coos Bay and Southern Oregon Speedways. Every one of those tracks has a Late Model division. This could happen if the promoters had a mind to do it, and it could be a draw. Booked properly, you'll even get drivers to come in from California as there's nothing going on there at the moment and they're just sort of taking what they can get. But, this is just speculation on my behalf.

The bottom line about Oregon racing is you have the Holy Grail of Cottage Grove. You have a pretty good program at Willamette Speedway. Look around at every other track and you're going to see fluctuating numbers. A few tracks are getting by a little bit better than others, and other tracks you wonder how they're still going. Oregon only has nine outdoor oval tracks operating during the spring and summer months. Be thankful for what you have. We'd all like every track to be like Cottage Grove when it comes to car count, but there are more tracks like Sunset Speedway and River City Speedway than you think.

Back to the Street Stock subject. As the Road To The Iron Giant leads through Southern Oregon Speedway for the big Street Stock Disorder On The Southern Border Race, I can't help but lament the fact that the track doesn't have a regular Street Stock show. It was never truly cultivated. True, there was a run from 2010 to 2014, but the promoter's insistence on tweaking the rules upset the racers and killed the car count. Before that, you could go to Medford Raceway to find a Street Stock show. I just don't understand why Street Stocks were not included in 1996. The Pro Stocks they had aren't what they are today, but they certainly weren't Street Stocks either.

I keep thinking that if a half a dozen or so of the locals who surely still have cars came out and supported this race and showed an interest in racing again, a few dates could be sprinkled throughout the rest of this year and the class could be added next year. But, this is a fantasy. We do have one local coming out and racing, but you have to have enough cars to make it worth the effort to run. So, I'm very much looking forward to this race, but I know it's just a one shot deal. With any luck, it goes well this year and we get another date next year.

That leaves the idea of the IMCA Stock Car class. I'm not enamoured with the IMCA sanction. I do respect them for making the effort that they do, but I'm hardly their #1 fan. I lean towards NASCAR if you need to sanction, such as Coos Bay is doing, or just doing it in-house. But, I also understand the racers swear by this thing. I wouldn't make the decision to remove sanctioning because I know the racers like their steady set of rules and all of that. But, I'd be holding my nose and doing it.

I have to admit I really like the look of the IMCA Stock Car. They run this class without Camaros or Firebirds, which are cars that I do like. But, these cars have a unique look and they have a nice little group of cars between Hanford and Bakersfield in California. There were 15 cars at Hanford last week. Willamette has added the class this year, though they have a thriving Street Stock division and maybe didn't need to do this. I still wonder if Jerry is sending the Street Stock racers a message with this class. Who knows?

Here's the thing. If you look at Southern Oregon Speedway and neighbouring Siskiyou Motor Speedway, they don't have the Street Stock or Hobby Stock class. So, IMCA Stock Cars are not intruding here. The time might be right. It may be that Siskiyou Speedway would have to be the track to take the first step as Southern Oregon Speedway has a roster of eight regular divisions along with the monthly visits of the OTRO Hardtops. I think they could still fit IMCA Stock Cars in there, but there is something else that Southern Oregon Speedway could and should be looking at.

With Siskiyou Motor Speedway, it's obvious that they need to be thinking about another division of reliable local competitors that they could draw from. Hornets are the division that jumps out at me, though they have a Mini Stock class there. Hornets would be the easiest class to start, and they could even go the IMCA Sport Compact route if they wanted to. Not that that would be needed, as I don't think it is, but again you have people who swear by the sanctioning. An IMCA Stock Car class could work if you give it a chance to grow. They also have the Jefferson Racing Association Jalopies that could be brought out there as another thing to put on the race track.

Southern Oregon Speedway has a division staring them right in the face that could be on the roster. That would be Pro Stocks. When the track opened in 1996, Pro Stocks were on the roster. I will not get into the things that led to the formation of the Outlaw Pro Stock Association in 2012 other than to say I endorse it as something that was needed at the time. This will make for some interesting writing for the book I'm working on for possible offseason release.

Southern Oregon Speedway and the Pro Stock Association leadership got off on the wrong foot in 2016, and the situation was never truly repaired. I stepped in to do everything I could to try and salvage something during the off-season, but I realized that those efforts were futile. The Pro Stock drivers want to have a say in things, and the association is very important to them. They're not really willing to back off on that, and given the fact that some of the racers even go back to the failed Street Stock movement of not too many years ago, I sort of understand why they are clinging to this association. They're doing what they think is right.

The Calculated Comfort Outlaw Pro Stock Association is running about every other week at Siskiyou Speedway and has put together a good schedule for this year. Southern Oregon Speedway will see them on June 2nd and in early September. Southern Oregon Speedway management attempted to start a Pro Stock class in house last year, but in absence of any significant support from the association drivers on their off nights, the thing fizzled out. They were offered a good purse, and in fact, the Top 10 drivers in points received trophies at the awards banquet. Management felt like they treated the Pro Stock drivers right and didn't get any return on their investment.

The disappointment in this matter was the Medford area racers. I won't necessarily put this at the feet of either the association or the Klamath Falls based contingent. But I will question why Medford area racers didn't come in bigger numbers. This was the biggest challenge I had in trying to convince management to give this division of shot this year beyond the two dates. Where were the cars when the dates were booked last year?

There is a known roster somewhere in the 10 to 12 range of Medford area cars, and there was no expectation of everyone showing up all at once for any of those races. However, it was reasonable to think that six to eight cars would come, and that would have been acceptable to get things going. When that didn't happen, management started looking at the other divisions and seeing if they could fill a schedule based mainly on them.

The biggest disappointment in all of this is that when the association comes to town, they're delivering 12 to 16 cars. They are one of the strongest classes on any given race night at Southern Oregon Speedway. So when you look at what division would need to be added to the roster, you have one there that doesn't have enough dates. I understand why this happened, but the fact remains. It's there, and it would deliver if given the chance.

On that note, I'll end what is already a column that went on for far too long. Until next time...