Thrill Aplenty at Princess and Pirates Night


By Ken Keating

The many fans that entered Western Speedway last Saturday witnessed an action packed night with the “Princess and Pirates” Parade, face painting, a driving exhibition by four drivers with Capital City Drifting, a fireworks show, and Trophy Dashes, Heat races, and Feature event racing with the Demo Cars, Demo Trucks, Figure 8s, and the Bombers.

The first Trophy Dash, for Bombers, produced a lot of action as Sean Whitley was leading big when he spun around on lap two surrendering the lead to Teresa Johnson. Daniel David also spun out on the last lap while Johnson went on to the popular win. Gilles Cyr won the other Dash for Bombers. Jim Young returned to action and won the Trophy Dash for Demo Cars, George Haywood won the Dash for the Demo Trucks, and Rhett Szevics won the Figure 8 Dash. Heat race wins went to George Haywood, Brenden Moore and Heath Cooper in the Bomber Series, Brad Smith in Demo Cars, and Brandon Young in the Figure 8 class. Brandon Young was victorious in the Figure 8 Heat race, Brad Smith won the Demo Car Heat, George Haywood took the win in the Demo Trucks, Brenden Moore and Heath Cooper took wins in their Bomber Heats. Several drivers suffered the stop and go penalty for breaking the twenty second lap time rule in this event. Between the Heat races and Feature events several kids, big and small, paraded down the front stretch dressed in their finest Princess and Pirates costumes and posed for a group photo at Victory Square. The numbers of participants continue to grow each year Western Speedway puts on this event. Four drivers from the Capital City Drifting Series put on quite a display of driving sideways around the corners of the Langford oval and still manage to stay off the walls. A couple drivers actually burned the tires off the cars altogether. They all received a great ovation from the appreciative fans as they stopped under the flagstand.

George Haywood entered a combined Demo Truck and Demo Car Feature event looking for a clean sweep after also posting the fast time of the night. Doug Richens led the trucks for several lap until Haywood spun him around on lap twelve. He indeed went on to the win in the Feature event. Brad Smith took the lead in the Demo Cars on lap thirteen and hung on for the win followed by Robin Trotter.

Cody Young and Cody Loughran shared the front row for the start of the Figure 8 Feature event. Andrew Buchanan wasted little time taking over the lead as he made the pass on lap two. Behind him, Caleb Van Bree and Shawn Young tried to get to the front runner. Kail Beck was also moving through the pack taking the third spot on lap six only to loose that spot to Brandon Young one lap later. On lap twelve, Brandon took over the lead leaving Shawn and Buchanan to battle for the next positions. Beck got back in the mix running third on lap seventeen until he ran into a mechanical black flag two laps later. When the dust settled, Brandon Young held on for the win followed by Shawn Young, and Andrew Buchanan filling out the top three positions.

Before the Bomber Feature got underway members of the Kid’s Club came down to meet the drivers on the front stretch and should their car win they could come out to Victory Square and have their picture taken with that winning driver. Sean Whitley and Brian Wakelin brought a field of fifteen Bombers to the green flag for fifty laps of racing in the Bomber Feature event of the night. Whitley held the lead for the first two laps but was overtaken by Heath Cooper on lap three and dropped back to run second with Tyler Woods taking the third spot by lap five and then to second one lap later. On lap ten, Gilles Cyr moved up to run third and moved to the second spot four laps later. On lap twelve, the yellow flag came out as Whitley spun around on turn one and had to be pushed into the pits. Just previous to the yellow flag, Woods and Cooper staged a couple of side by side laps with Woods looking to take over the front. On the double file restart, Woods lined up on the outside of Cooper and again ran side by side and then Gilles Cyr moved into the mix as did Aaron Campbell and the battle for the lead was intense with each driver looking to gain control of the lead. On lap sixteen both Cooper and Woods spun around on turn four but did not warrant a yellow flag as both drivers righted their cars. This gave the lead to Cyr followed by Campbell and Brenden Moore joining the mix. On lap twenty-five, Sean Staniforth moved up running in the third spot and threatened to take over the lead. Moore and Staniforth staged some side by side racing for several laps with Cyr still in sight. On lap thirty, Staniforth finally took over the second spot by himself leaving Moore, Cameron, and Mark Lockhart in the battle for positions. These drivers changed positions and took turns running side by side for several laps. On lap forty-two, the yellow came out as Teresa Johnson had a mechanical problem and she had to be pushed into the pits. On the double file restart, Cyr had Staniforth on his outside and the battle continued with Lockhart and Moore still in the thick of things. On lap forty-eight both Cyr and Lockhart ran too fast and got the stop and go putting Moore into the lead. Before they could get around for the white flag, Staniforth passed Moore going through turn one and grabbed the lead and the win even before they knew what had happened to the front runners. This was the second Feature event for Staniforth in a row after keeping his car over the twenty second barrier. Brenden Moore, Aaron Campbell, Bruce Knight, and Andrew Wilson rounded out the top five positions. The events on this night ended with about a twenty minute show of fireworks. The next event, at Western Speedway, is the return of the Richlock Rentals Non Wing Sprints, the Stock Cars, and the seasons debut of the Island Dwarf Cars and the Old Time Racing Association. Qualifying again is 5:30 with racing at 6:30 PM.

Christian J. Stewart
Christian is a professional photographer and media professional based in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. Currently working as the Assistant General Manager for Victoria HarbourCats Baseball Club, a Senior Contributing Editor and photographer at Independent Sports News (ISN) and operating his own freelance photography and media/pr company.