Story and Photos by Ken Keating
Langford BC – Western Speedway hosted round six in the Steve Copp Construction sponsored Wednesday Night Fever event with the Hornet Series with three Trophy Dashes, twelve Heat races, and three Feature events and forty cars qualified to run.
Trophy Dash wins went to Phil Lagan, Laura-Ashley Grant, and Davin Otke. Heat race winners included Sam Lagan with two, Ian Walker, Davin Otke with two, Mike Halls, Dean Barry, Devin Fournier, Garrett Smith, Laura-Ashley Grant, Brad Aumen, and Blair Davis.
Mark Smith had the pole for the start of the C-Main event with the top four cars transferring to the B-Main. Sam Lagan jumped to the lead on the first lap as Smith fell in the second position. Ryan Smith #33 had the third spot until he lost that position to Dean Barry on lap eight. When the chequered flag dropped after twenty laps, Lagan had the win followed by Mark Smith, Barry, and Ryan Smith taking the top four positions.
Sam Lagan Wins Hornet C-Main Feature event
Bruce Duffis and Meghan McCollom shared the front row for the start of the B-Main event and McCollom got the early jump and went into the lead as Duffas took the second position. On lap four the yellow flag came out as Kevin O’Brien spun around in turn one. On the double file restart McCollom had Davin Otke on the outside as they went back to green flag racing. McCollom got the edge and went back to the lead as Otke took over the second spot dropping Duffis back to third as Matt Schultz moved into the fourth position. Over the next several laps Otke tried everything to get by the leader but each time McCollom shut the door. On lap twenty-four Otke dove to the inside and made the pass and took over the lead and behind him, Duffas dropped out with a flat tire, Kevin Dawson, Matt Schultz, and Laura-Ashlet Grant were battling for the next positions. By lap twenty-nine, Grant worked into the third position, Kyle Fournier worked into the fifth position as Dawson dropped a couple positions. Otke took the chequered flag followed by McCollom, Grant, and Schultz taking the transfer positions that put them in the Feature event. Otke had a great night winning the Dash, two Heats and his Feature event.
Davin Otke Wins Hornet B-Main Feature event
A very young, Tristan Gait, has raced at Saratoga and appeared at Western Speedway for only the third time but led a field of seventeen cars to the green flag and forty laps of racing in the Hornet Feature event. He jumped to the lead and was followed for two laps by Andrew Buchanan until Daryl Cahill took that spot followed by Brad Aumen and Cam Stanfield by lap three. In the early laps, Gait was able to build a good lead as the rest of the field tried to sort themselves out including Ryan Smith who had won five straight Feature events and started fifteenth.
By lap fifteen, the front runners were starting to run into lapped traffic and the gap closing between the top four drivers. On lap twenty-four, Smith had moved into the fifth spot and was now in contenetion putting pressure on Stanfield. On lap twenty-nine the yellow came out for a spinning car in turn one and Brad Aumen choosing to join Gait on the front row for the double file restart. On the green flag, Gait got away clean and went back to the lead while behind him positions were trading often. By lap thirty-two, Stanfield ran in the second spot with Smith in third. On lap thirty-eight the red flag came out as Blair Davis’s car caught on fire and emergency crews rushing to extinguish the fire and check on the driver.
This made a winner out of Gait as Officials threw the chequered flag and had they not had the red flag it was doubtful if anyone could have passed the leader as he was virtually flawless and had the lead throughout for his first ever Feature event win and he is the first driver to end the amazing win streak put up by Ryan Smith. Cam Stanfield placed second followed by Smith, Aumen, and Cole Schuurman rounding out the top five positions.
Tristan Gait Wins Hornet Feature event
The next event, at Western Speedway, is August 8th when again Steve Copp Construction sponsors the Wednesday Night Fever with the Hornet Series. There is no regular Saturday racing on August 4th but returns August 11th on Fan Appreciation Night with the Late Models (Twin 50’s), the Island Stock Cars, the SDL Bins I.M.S 4 Mini Stocks, and the Island Dwarf Cars.