Crockett, Hand, Mayea, Evans, And T. Swaim Pick Up 2014 Season Opener Victories At CGS
By Ben Deatherage
(Photo Courtesy of Madman Photography)
The weather was absolutely perfect on Saturday April 12th as the Cottage Grove Speedway hosted their first race of 2014. The 360 Sprints, IMCA Modifieds, Street Stocks, and Hornets were the four original classes on the schedule but Late Models were added shortly before Saturday. A large crowd and a large field of cars were both on hand to welcome in the new season.
Four-time and defending 360 Sprint champion Roger Crockett of Medford, in his Rocket Designs/Parker Racing Engines/Omlid & Swinney Fire Protection and Security #11 KPC, dominated the feature as he performed a banzai move from his third starting position on the opening lap in the first set of turns to obtain the race lead. From there on he would set a rapid pace as Garen Linder of Central Point and Cottage Grove native Colin Baker tried their very best to keep up with him.
A late race caution on lap twenty-three would briefly allow the Linder Powdercoating/Speedmart Inc./Rodgers Racing Engines #22 KPC of Linder an opportunity to challenge for the lead but Crockett would be too quick on the restart. Crockett would cross the line first to capture his first win of the entire 2014 campaign and his fifteenth straight feature triumph at CGS.
Garen Linder would end the evening in second while the Steelhouse Metal Roofing Supply/Hedge Carter Continuous Gutter Service/Huddle Automotive Repair/Oregon West RV #71 XXX of Colin Baker was third. The balance of the top five would consist of Seth Nunes from Medford in the Napa Auto Parts of Klamath Falls/Lucas Oil Products/Rodgers Racing Engines #5N Maxim in fourth and fifth place would go to the K&S Motorsports/Grant Springer Racing Engines #10 XXX of Eugene’s Kyle Miller.
Garen Linder was quick time of the night while Roger Crockett would win the trophy dash. Heat race winners were Linder and Colin Baker.
Despite performing a clean sweep and leading every single lap Cottage Grove’s Braedon Hand managed to hold on to win the opening leg of the season in the IMCA Modifieds. Hand, piloting the D&D Automotive/Vintage Inn Family Restaurant/KNND 1400 AM #5 Shaw by S.D.M.F., took full advantage of his pole starting position. Before too long Hand would literally have his hands full with Collen Winebarger of Corbett and Crawfordsville native Kyle Yeack.
While Hand eventually would develop some breathing room an epic battle for the runner-up position would ensue between Winebarger, in the Discount Race Car Parts/Gordy Lee Photography/Frisbie Motorsports #SW Shaw by Jeff Taylor mount, and Yeack in his Fastenal/Cascade Outdoor Power & Equipment/Radiator Supply House #47 Pro entry. Yeack would secure second and began to gain on Hand but would get too high in the first set of turns in the last half of the race allowing Winebarger to once again challenge Yeack.
It appeared that the whole feature would go non-stop but a caution on lap twenty-one would bunch up the field one last time. Unfortunately Kyle Yeack would get caught up in the incident when mechanical problems would bring Springfield’s Dustin Comer to a halt, in his S.D.M.F. Race Cars/Mid Valley Metals/K.C. Race Engines #ZERO S.D.M.F. machine, and Yeack would have nowhere to go and the two would make heavy contact on the front stretch.
On the last restart of the main event Collen Winebarger would pull out all the stops as he put Braedon Hand under enormous pressure in the final four circuits. Winebarger would stay on Hand’s rear bumper but couldn’t quite get side-by-side to try and make a pass. Hand would hold on to start his title defense as he looks to capture his fifth career CGS championship.
Collen Winebarger was a respectable second followed by the Dog House Racing/Payroll Specialties Inc./Hoppes Construction #M1 Impressive of Jacksonville driver Mark Wauge in third. Albany driver Craig Cassell, in his Ester Lee Motel of Lincoln City/Dr. Mary Harada Breast Cancer Specialist at Samaritan Health Services/Debra Herndon Family Nurse Practitioner #5N Rocket by Ruhlman, ended the night in fourth while crossing the stripe in fifth was the Mountain View Woodworking Inc./Cascade Outdoor Power & Equipment #49 Pro of Tom Yeack from Crawfordsville.
The evening’s quick time award would go to Braedon Hand while he would also win the trophy dash presented by Highoctane Die Cast. Heat race winners were Hand and Collen Winebarger.
With the late notice of the Late Models being added to the card it would make their appearance on April 12th a non-point affair. A good crop of cars were on hand for competition as there was an additional $500.00 bonus to the winner courtesy of the fine folks at X-Factor Race Cars. Come feature time Bend driver Thomas Hunzikar, but born and raised in Seegräben, Switzerland and making his Cottage Grove Speedway debut, would lead the opening leg as he would utilize the bottom of the race track to get his Spirit Filled Racing/Grays Racing Engines #38 Victory Circle to the front.
Fellow Bend driver Rob Mayea would make a pass around the outside to obtain the lead from Hunziker. Mayea, chauffeuring his J&S Farms/Cornett Racing Engines #37 Victory Circle, set a quick pace but a handful of laps later was overtaken by Collen Winebarger in the Discount Race Car Parts/Gordy Lee Photography/Frisbie Motorsports #SW MasterSbilt. A lap twelve caution would bunch up the field allowing for Mayea to challenge Winebarger for the lead.
Mayea would eventually get the lead back on lap fifteen when Winebarger would get a little high in turns three and four. Another caution would occur on lap seventeen bunching up the field for a showdown in the last half of the main event. Mayea would keep his mount in front despite Winebarger putting considerable pressure on him on several occasions. But Mayea would maintain his lead and would pick up the victory.
Winebarger was second and behind him in third was Thomas Hunziker. The Schram Brothers Excavating/Century III Stables/Bodies by Steve-O #16 MasterSbilt entry of Jerry Schram from Vancouver, Washington was fourth followed by Sodaville’s Tony Brakehall in fifth despite coming from the back twice in his Sure Flow Concrete Pumping Services/Swing Construction/Liberty Automotive #13 Swartz.
Fast time of the night was Portland native Joey Tanner in his Jody’s Nothin’ But Fun Bar & Grill/X-Factor Race Cars/Schram Brothers Excavating #111 X-Factor who would also win the Superior Fuel Cells sponsored trophy dash. Earning victories in the Quality RV sponsored heat races were the Schram Borthers Excavating/Herz Precision Parts #09 MasterSbilt of Ryan Bothwell from Aurora and Rob Mayea.
The Street Stock class would see quite a few of new faces from all sorts of different race tracks. Visiting from Vanouver, Washington for the first time ever three-time Sunset Speedway Park Street Stock champion Craig Loomis would gain the race lead in the opening lap. He would set a rapid pace in his Liberty Welding/Old Iron Classics/City Sprint Deliveries #01 Camaro until Justin Evans of Lebanon would seize the top spot on lap three. Evans, driving once again for car owner Al Flora and his Albie’s Medical Transport/Allied Medical Transport/X-Factor Race Cars #99 Cougar, would set the pace with Loomis right behind him.
The two drivers would have a see-saw battle exchanging the lead a total of six times. Only one caution would occur, on lap five, in the twenty-lap affair. Evans would hold on to the lead after finally securing it on lap twelve to earn his first career Cottage Grove Speedway victory.
Craig Loomis unfortunately was disqualified giving second place to Steve Begley in the Nathan Anderson Dentistry/Platinum Hair of Creswell/Stacy Graves Massage Therapy #00 Nova followed by Bend driver Ethan Landers in third piloting his Swan & Sons Woodworking/Smart Solutions #17Z Camaro. The rest of the top five would consist of the Siskiyou Insurance #50 Camaro of Brett Provost from Grants Pass in fourth and Vancouver’s Washington’s Joey Cannon in fifth driving the Cannon’s RV #11 Camaro.
Fast time of the night would go to Justin Evans while Craig Loomis won the trophy dash. Picking up the heat race victory was Evans.
The Hornets were back in action and despite the low car count the feature was pretty entertaining. Dexter’s Mike Swaim, driving the Rapid Delivery/Bigg Dogg Recycling/DT Machine & Fabrication #48 Tacoma, would grab the early race lead. He would be off to a good start but his son Taunton Swaim, also from Dexter, would overtake him on lap four.
Taunton Swaim would cruise to victory as he would lead the rest of the distance without any issues. Swaim would put the Bigg Dogg Recycling/DT Racing & Fabrication/Big B Tire #17 Tacoma in victory lane for owner Randy Kuhl to open the season up.
Mike Swaim would end the evening in second while third place would go to the Dr. Vape Products/T.L. Morgan Motors/Dalton Carpet #30 Protégé of K.C. Scott from Springfield. Jessi House in the #46 would complete the finishing order in fourth despite being involved in an incident on lap six.
Taunton Swaim would set fast time as well as win the trophy dash. Mike Swaim would prevent his son from picking up a clean sweep by winning the heat race.
Next Saturday evening April 19th the Cottage Grove Speedway will be back in action for the first Pepsi Family Night of the year. We will offer our normal family pass for two Adults and up to four Youths for just $35.00 but being that it is Pepsi Family Night complimentary small soft drink beverages will be included with the admission. Also don’t miss our extra special Easter Egg Hunt that we will be hosting too.
Classes on tap will include the Northwest Extreme Sprints, Late Models, IMCA Modifieds, and Street Stocks. Also the Northwest Extreme Late Model Series will take on the local Late Model contingent as they start their 2014 season. Pit Gates will open at 2:00 PM, Front Gates open at 4:00, and racing starts at 6:45. Tickets for this event are Adults $12.00, Seniors/Military/Juniors (13-18) $10.00, Youths (Ages 12-6) $5.00, and Children under the age of 5 are FREE. For more information log on to www.cottagegrovespeedway.com.
2014 Season Opener
Saturday April 12th, 2014
Cottage Grove Speedway
Cottage Grove, Oregon
Feature: 1. 11-Roger Crockett; 2. 22-Garen Linder; 3. 71-Colin Baker; 4. 5N-Seth Nunes; 5. 10-Kyle Miller; 6. 22R-Mike Romig; 7. 70-Raquel Ivie; 8. 4-Jesse Thistle; 9. 28-Mark Herz; 10. 6A-Kady Adelman; 11. 71JR-Colby Carter; DNS 16-Nick Tomlinson
X-Factor Race Cars Feature: 1. 37-Rob Mayea; 2. SW-Collen Winebarger; 3. 38-Thomas Hunziker; 4. 16-Jerry Schram; 5. 13-Tony Brakeall; 6. 13B-Randy Barley; 7. 44T-Brian Thompson; 8. 09-Ryan Bothwell; DNS 78-Ed Peters; DNS 111-Joey Tanner
Feature: 1. 5-Braedon Hand; 2. SW-Collen Winebarger; 3. M1-Mark Wauge; 4. 5N-Craig Cassell; 5. 49-Tom Yeack; 6. 47-Kyle Yeack; 7. 11X-Tom Berry Jr.; 8. 68-Jesse Bailey; 9. 85-Gene Ashley; 10. 73-Bryan Gray; 11. ZERO-Dustin Comer
Feature: 1. 99-Justin Evans; 2. 00-Steve Begley; 3. 17Z-Ethan Landers; 4. 50-Brett Provost; 5. 11-Joey Cannon; DNS 97-Ryan Emery; DNS 68J-Stacy Hiatt; 8. 01-Craig Loomis
Feature: 1. 17-Taunton Swaim; 2. 48-Mike Swaim; 3. 30-K.C. Scott; 4. 46-Jessica House