By Ken Keating
Victoria (ISN) – Western Speedway hosted the return of the Island Stock Cars and the Richlock Rental Non Wing Sprint Cars for their second appearance of 2012 Saturday night.
Also on the card was the season debut for the Island Dwarf Cars and the Old Time Racing Association for Trophy Dashes, Heat races, and of course the Feature events. After young Natalie Vardy opened the evening with her singing of the National Anthem the Dwarf Cars got the racing going in their Trophy Dash and the action started early. Mike Meeres seemed to have things going his way but on the last lap spun out handing the win to Mike Schott. As the field was coming to the white flag lap in the OTRA Dash, Tom Cinnamon made a move to go under Larry Joyce for the lead when Joyce spun around. Dennis Morneau got stopped before he crashed into the spinning car as Cinnamon went on for the win. Brian Clutchey won his second Trophy Dash in a row as he took the chequered flag in the Stock Car Series and Chris Root won the Non Wing Sprint Car Dash. Heat race wins went to Ike Armitage and Mike Schott in the Dwarf Car Series, Kail Beck and George Jenson won in the OTRA Heats, Larry Graham and Brian Clutchey prevailed in the Stock Car Series, and Darryl Morneau and Jeff Bird took the chequered flag for the Sprint Cars Series.
John McNabb and Miles Maxie shared the front row for the start of the Dwarf Car Feature event but it was Ike Armitage that grabbed the lead on the first lap with Maxie and Mike Meeres running second and third respectively. On lap eight the yellow flag came out as Maxie slid just a bit and Meeres, with nowhere to go, tagged him spinning Maxie around. Dave Emmerson, driving the #24 car, also was involved and lost the radiator ending his night. On the restart, Armitage got away clean and continued to run in the lead followed by Mike Schott and Bob Greenaway. On lap fourteen, Meeres passed Greenaway and took over the third spot. No one had anything for Armitage as he went on to take the chequered flag in convincing fashion ahead of Schott, and Meeres.
Ron Simpson held the pole as twelve Old Timers lined up for racing in their Feature event. Kail Beck, from the outside front row grabbed the lead early as Simpson battled Joe Dardingo for the second position. On lap four Dardingo moved up to the second position as George “The Jet” Jenson moved up to run third three laps later. There was a couple of yellow flags early as Roger Beck spun around in turn three and then Tom Cinnamon went around after getting the front end of his car tangled in Jenson’s rear bumper thus spinning him around with no further contact. On lap nine the yellow came out again as Cinnamon lost the rear tire on his machine and had to be towed off the track. On the restart, Beck got away to the lead and Jenson moved quickly into the second spot dropping Dardingo back to third. On lap fourteen, Jenson was able to get by Beck and into the lead but could not shake the younger Beck or Dennis Morneau who also moved up to challenge. Over the next several laps, these three drivers put on quite a show of racing as they ran door handle to door handle trading positions often. Morneau was able to actually lead lap twenty-two and three as the side by side racing continued with Beck still in the mix. Back on lap seventeen, the yellow came out as Roger Beck was entering turn one his clutch exploded on his car taking out the bell housing and fly wheel sending parts flying over the race track. The only other casuality was Joe Dardingo who suffered a punctured front tire on his car as he ran over some parts. Jenson, over the last few laps, held off the charge by Morneau and Kail Beck and went on to the win with Morneau finishing in second and Beck in third. Larry Joyce and James Miller rounded out the top five. Jenson explained; “I had to slow down just a bit for those few laps but put it back together for this win.” George is “running for the cure” this season raising funds to help in the fight against cancer. An emotional Jenson recalled family members and fellow racers who have been affected with cancer and “We all need to step up in this fight” he says. Each of the sponsors of George’s car donated one hundred dollars for the win and all proceeds will be donated to this very worthy cause.
Chris McInerny and Aaron Wilkie led fifteen cars to the green flag for the start of the Stock Car Feature event. The first yellow came out early as the racing was tight and as one car slipped just a bit caught Brandon Steen sending him in the air and into the turn one wall and shortly after another slight bauble caught Brian Clutchey spinning him around in turn one. Everyone was able to avoid major crashes and continue. Aaron Wilkie was leading until Daryl Crocker moved up and finally passed for the lead on lap nine as fans were treated to some great side by side racing with these two drivers. On lap eleven “Hot Shoe” Cody Aumen moved up and took the third spot and then moved to second on lap fifteen sending Wilkie back to third. The yellow came out again as cars tried running three wide going into turn one and this caused Dave Reside and Lance Wade, driving for Ryan Wade, to spin out. On the double file restart, Crocker had Aumen on his outside as the field took the green flag and the tight racing began again up front. On lap twenty-five Kyle Cottam moved into the mix by taking the third spot. On lap twenty-six, as Aumen and Crocker were racing side by side, slight contact sent both leaders around going through turn two bringing out the caution flag. On the double file restart, Kyle Cottam lined up with Mike Derepentigny on the front row with Aaron Wilkie and Brandon Steen back in the mix. Over the remainder of the race, Cottam held off the challengers and went on to take the chequered flag followed by Brandon Steen, Cody Aumen, Brian Clutchey, and Lance Wade who all suffered set backs but was able to drive back to a decent finish in yet another very competitive race.
Matt and Paul Verhagen shared the front row for the start of thirty laps of racing in the Non Wing Sprint Car Feature event with Matt getting the lead early followed quickly by Dale Robinson. On lap two, Mark Stuart moved up to run third and then passed while Robinson took over the lead two laps later. On lap five, Stuart moved into the second spot as Chris Root was coming forward taking the third spot on lap seven dropping Verhagen back to fourth. On lap nine Stuart took the lead dropping Robinson back to second. On lap twelve, Root moved up to the second spot leaving Robinson and Verhagen to battle behind them. On lap nineteen, Jeff Bird moved up to try and challenge Robinson for the third spot. Up front, Stuart had opened a very large lead over the rest of the field. On lap twenty-five, Bird reined in Robinson and went by for the third spot and tried to reel in Root for second. Time and laps ran out as no one had anything for Stuart who took his second win of the season in the Ricklock Rentals Non Wing Sprint Cars. Root, Bird, Robinson, and Matt Verhagen rounded out the top five positions. Willow and Chahala were on hand for each Trophy presentation throughout the evening.
The next event, at Western Speedway and sponsored by IslandCarBuyers.com is on June 2nd that will feature the Goldstream News Demo Cars, Demo Trucks, Figure 8s, and the Bombers. There is a popular van chase also scheduled for this event. Qualifying takes place at 5:30 PM and racing begins at 6:30 PM.