Getting Up To Speed With…James Deatherage
By Ben Deatherage
(Photo Courtesy of Madman Photography)
Lined up next for our “Getting Up To Speed With…” column is this author’s very own younger brother James Deatherage. Deatherage has spent the last seven years working on various teams in the Late Model, Modified, and Sprint Car divisions. In late 2012 he would run the last three races in the Hornet classification at the Cottage Grove Speedway. In 2013 he aims to win the track title to become the third different champion in three seasons.
Driver: James Deatherage
Home Track: Cottage Grove Speedway
Hometown: Cottage Grove, Oregon
Occupation: Automotive Mechanic
Years Racing: 0
Car: #7D Chevy Cavalier
Sponsors: D&D Automotive, Harris Machine and Design, A-1 Auto Supply, Team S.D.M.F.
Special Thanks: Jeff Conklin, Randy Martin
BD: Growing up Mom told us we were never allowed to race. If I get this story right Mom didn’t know you had bought a race car until you had raced once or twice last year, right?
JD: No, she found out before. I was gutting the car one day and she was wondering why I was ruining a perfectly good car. She wasn’t very happy but she has calmed down a little bit since. Every time she sees a new dent she thinks I got in a high speed collision.
BD: Up until late last year your background has been strictly working on race cars for several years. Has that help you at all with your Hornet?
JD: Yes and no. Through the years watching all the races that I have I’ve learned to watch the lines drivers use and how they enter/exit the corners. What’s really cool is all the people that I’ve helped in the pits have started to help me back.
BD: You also have played a major role behind the scenes before selling parts, tire, and fuel. It’s safe to say you’ve been around CGS for quite a while?
JD: Yes. I used to live at the track for about two years. When I was there I would help Brian Crockett and Heath Shelton prepare the track. That taught me quite a bit of what the track can do and how it can change over the course of a night. I learned a lot about track conditions during that time.
BD: The Hornets have not been around for that long but they have really become popular in the last year or two. How hard is it to get into one of these things?
JD: It’s not too hard. I got a car on a Tuesday and had it racing by that Saturday. The cars can range from $300 to $1,000. It just depends on what you’re looking for.
BD: Is there a future for you in another class down the road? Late Model, Modified, or Sprint Car?
JD: I really don’t know. Right now the Hornet really fits into my budget. I might jump into a Modified one day. We’ll just see what happens.
The Cottage Grove Speedway will host their first ever Fan Appreciation Night which will be presented by Knecht’s Auto Parts. Classifications on hand will consist of 360 Sprints, IMCA Modifieds, Late Models, Northwest Extreme Late Model Series, and Street Stocks. For more information be sure and visit the venue’s homepage www.cottagegrovespeedway.com or call the brand new Northwest Tracks Hotline at (360)-699-RACE.