By Ken Keating
#29 Tristin Gait races with Bombers photo K.W Keating
Langford BC , On a rather cool evening a good crowd entered Western Speedway to watch the SDL Bins Mini Stocks, OTRA, the Lordco Auto Parts Bombers, and the Wilson Transportation Island Stock Car Series compete in Trophy Dashes, Heat races, and Feature events that produced a few twists.
Due to some sicknesses, a long weekend, busted cars, the car counts were down somewhat but the races on track turned out to be very competitive and interesting. On this night, the Bombers would compete for the Jim & Lorraine Haslam Memorial Trophy on the Victoria Auto Racing Hall of Fame and Museum Hall of Fame race. Hall of Fame Inductees Roy Haslam, Neil Montgomery, Rob Horne, and Norm Wilcox were on hand and introduced to the many race fans. Denis Morneau saw his chance for competing disappear when his OTRA #3 car had mechanical problems right after qualifying. Phil Lagan broke a rear axle but got the car fixed for Feature event racing. Dave Reside missed the Feature event when he, Chris McInerny, and Kyle Cottam went three wide into turn one and two but that didn’t work and Dave got the worst of it backing his new car into the wall during the Heat race thus ending his night.
Bombers & Stocks side by side photo K.W Keating
Trophy Dash wins went to Dave Reside in the Stock Cars, Alex Mouner in the Mini Stocks, Roger Beck in the OTRA Series, and Tristin Gait in the Bomber Series by just inches over Mike Dionne. Kyle Cottam picked up a victory in the Heat race in the Stock Cars along with Alex Mouner and Sean Constantine with the Mini Stocks, Larry Joyce and Joe Dardengo in the OTRA Series, and Bill Gallacher Jr. and Cody Young in the Bomber Series.
Sean Constantine #1 races with Caleb Van Bree photo K.W.Keating
Caleb Van Bree and Alex Mouner shared the front row for the start of the SDL Mini Stock Feature event with Van Bree getting the early advantage. On lap three Ryan Patterson moved into the second spot and two laps later took the lead followed by Van Bree and Sean Constantine. Patterson and Van Bree ran side by side for several laps as neither driver wanted to give in to the other. On lap fifteen Van Bree pulled into the pits leaving Patterson the lead and the win chased across the finish line by Constantine and Mouner the top three drivers.
Kail Beck #35 races with OTRA Photo K.W.Keating
Larry Joyce and Kail Beck led nine cars to the green flag for the start of the OTRA Feature event. Joyce got out to the early lead and had Roger Beck move to the second spot after just three laps. Joyce and the elder Beck ran side by side for a few laps until Roger pulled into the lead on lap twelve. Roger began to pull away somewhat and cruised to his first ever OTRA Feature event. He was followed by Larry Joyce, Steven Dardengo, Joe Dardengo, and Brian Clutchey rounding out the top five drivers.
Chris McInerny #25 races with Kyle Cottam & Dave Reside photo K.W.Keating
Four Stock Cars, led by Chris McInerny, and thirteen Bombers, led by Sean Whitley, took the green flag for fifty laps of racing in a combined Stock Car and Bomber Feature event. On the Hall of Fame night, the winning Bomber driver would add the Jim & Lorraine Memorial Trophy to his resume. McInerny jumped to the lead on the first lap followed quickly by Phil Lagan and Kyle Cottam by the fourth lap. Bill Gallacher Jr. and Brandon Steen led the Bombers by the second lap. McInerny checked out on the field over the next several laps building a comfortable lead. On lap sixteen, Cottam took over the second spot dropping Lagan back to third while Brian Baltis moved his Bomber to the lead in that Series. On lap nineteen, Tristin Gait moved into the second spot dropping Steen to third.
Wayne Hart #11 races with Phil Lagan photo K.W.Keating
Eight laps later Gait passed for the lead in the Bomber Series and on lap thirty the yellow flag came out for a stalled car in turn one and two. On the double file restart, McInerny had Wayne Hart beside him as the field went back to green flag racing. Almost immediately McInerny began to fall off the pace and pulled his car into the pits by lap thirty-three. Hart led for three laps until he was passed by Cottam in the Stock Car Series while Gait still led the Bombers with Bill Gallacher Jr. running second with Baltis in third. When the chequered flag dropped, Cottam led Wayne Hart and Phil Lagan to the Stock Car finish line while Gait finished ahead of Gallacher, Brandon Steen, and Brian Wakelin in the Bomber Series.
The next event at Western Speedway is schedule for May 22nd and 23rd with two nights of the Lordco Auto Parts Demo Series with the Demo Cars, Demo Trucks, Figure 8s, and the Bombers. Both nights also feature Rockstar and California Kid the big bad Monster Trucks.