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THE MARVIN

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MONSTER TRUCKS

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Logger's Cup

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Williamson Wows CGS Crowd With $3333 Ralph Bloom Memorial Win; Sheelar, Minter, And Cooper Also Obtain Wins
1247
6/4/2024

6/4/2024

Cottage Grove Speedway


Williamson Wows CGS Crowd With $3333 Ralph Bloom Memorial Win; Sheelar, Minter, And Cooper Also Obtain Wins

Williamson Wows CGS Crowd With $3333 Ralph Bloom Memorial Win; Sheelar, Minter, And Cooper Also Obtain Wins
By Ben Deatherage
(Photo Courtesy of Jason Davenport Photography))
Cottage Grove, Oregon- The highly anticipated Ralph Bloom Memorial, a significant event in the Cottage Grove Speedway calendar, concluded on Saturday, June 1st.  With a substantial prize of $3333.00 on the line in the Friesen Performance IMCA Northern Sport Mod, presented by Roadhouse Billiards and Brew, the fifty-lap finale was a thrilling installment to the 2024 campaign.  Other classes on the card included the Friesen Performance IMCA Modifieds presented by Wheeless Trailer Sales and Repair, Todd’s Auto Body Limited Sprints, and Mach-1 IMCA Sport Compacts presented by Kiefer.

The Friesen Performance IMCA Northern Sport Mods feature, presented by Roadhouse Billiards and Brew, began with Jesse Williamson seizing the top spot after the drop of the green flag.  The Coburg chauffeur tried to construct a significant lead but would have problems when a portion of his hood folded back and began to give him visibility issues.  Eventually, a yellow on lap five would occur, and Williamson retired to the pit area, had the hood wholly removed, and came back out restarting dead last.  Yreka, California’s Ethan Killingsworth became the new leader.

Killingsworth did his best to desert the rest of the field. Still, several cautions prevented him from getting a significant lead and but at the same time also prevented heavy lapped traffic. Around the midway point, Williamson was back in the Top 5, and on lap twenty-seven, a three-car battle for second place was waged between Williamson, Central Point’s Jorddon Braaten, and Matt Sanders from Brookings. 

Williamson secured second on the twenty-eighth circuit and, before too long, had his sights set on going after Killingsworth. The two would fight hard to stay in front of one another, but Williamson would successfully obtain the position on the thirty-fifth trip past the flag stand.

Williamson did his best to pull away, but a late race incident on lap forty-five stacked things up.  Sanders was in pursuit mode, trying to track down the leader. Still, he would get into the back straightaway wall on lap forty-eight, bringing out another caution after his right rear tire went down.  On the final restart, Killingsworth tried to throw a Hail Mary but had a flat left front tire himself.  Williamson went on to cruise to sweep the weekend of the Ralph Bloom Memorial to become the fourth different winner in as many seasons.

Defending Oregon State champion Trevor Points, from Salem, rallied to finish second, while Killingsworth was third. The rest of the Top 5 consisted of defending Washington State title holder Brayden Brookshire, from Vancouver, Washington, and defending CGS champ Jordan Henry, representing Roseburg, who were fourth and fifth, respectively.

The Friesen Performance IMCA Modifieds, presented by Wheeless Trailer Sales and Repair, started their main event with a battle between 2022 Oregon State champion Paul Culp from Creswell, and Springfield veteran Aaron Sheelar.  Sheelar secured the lead on the opening lap and began to pull away from the rest of the competition.

With nine circuits to go, the leader had to deal with some heavy traffic. A yellow came out when a car slowed down in front of Sheelar, and the two made some significant contact. Sheelar managed to keep going and retain the lead, but the remaining balance of the feature had him trying to keep back Tyler Smith.

Smith, from Cottage Grove, searched high and low to attempt to navigate around Sheelar. Still, Sheelar held his own, running the middle of the track to go on to score the victory. It was a well-deserved victory for the longtime racer who had recently made a chassis switch over the off-season. The change is already paying dividends, as he earned a win in the Shaw Race Cars Western Region.

Smith was a respectable second while defending track champion Jake Mayden of Springfield was third. Defending Oregon State title winner Carter Patterson, from Lebanon, beat out two-time Oregon State champion John Campos, now residing in Scio, for fourth.

The Todd’s Auto Body Limited Sprints race started with Steve Smith, from Winston, leading early.  Smith stayed in the position for a while despite Merlin’s Brian Davis putting pressure on him.  Unfortunately, on lap seven, he would spin off the second corner, giving the top position to Shady Cove driver David Marble.

Marble would not be out of the woods yet as he would fight fiercely with Tim Minter.  Minter, representing Cottage Grove, and Marble would go side by side for several laps before Minter secured the lead with ten circuits remaining.  A late race caution stacked the field up one last time.

On the ensuing restart, Marble stayed in stride with Minter. Marble got close on occasion, but when he couldn’t perform the overtake, it allowed Minter to pull away. On the final lap, Minter would get briefly bottled in traffic, allowing Marble to close and try to take the lead out of turn two, but Minter would hold on to pick up a huge win at Cottage Grove Speedway for his first victory of 2024.

Marble was a respectable second, followed by Winston’s Timothy Smith in third.  Davis and Steve Smith were fourth and fifth.

Not to be outdone, the Mach-1 IMCA Sport Compacts presented by Kiefer main event started off with Jim Simmons holding down the number one position in the early goings.  The Cottage Grove veteran had to fight off a hard-charging Kerry Cooper for the top-place position.  Cooper, also from Cottage Grove, tried to get around the leader, but Simmons was quicker.

Cooper tried again to get past Simmons on lap eight but was all of a sudden had to protect second from Springfield’s Charles Trissell.  Once Cooper had resecured second, Dusten Henderson of Cottage Grove and Trissell would put on a show for third.  Henderson would get the spot as Trissell, Cottage Grove native Tiffany Towns, and Sutherlin chauffeur briefly battled it out for fourth. 

Cooper made a sweeping pass outside Simmons on the fourteenth circuit in the first set of turns.  Cooper would have the advantage in the final corners and at the line.  Bryant quickly followed Cooper to second as Cooper checked out and dominated the rest of the distance despite a stoppage on lap eighteen.  It marked Cooper’s first win of the season to become the fourth different winner in as many races this year.

Bryant wound up second, while Simmons was a noble third.  Henderson ended his evening in fourth, with fifth going to Marcola motorist Roger Bell.

Racing will take a pause this weekend at Cottage Grove Speedway, but the Monster Trucks will invade the venue on Friday, June 7th, and Saturday, June 8th. For more information, log on to www.cottagegrovespeedway.com.


Submitted By: Ben Deatherage

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