Back on the road again, although 2010 has just barely concluded, ProSoundAudio Services new season is already underway, pounding the pavement to the Oregon State Fairgrounds and The “New and Improved” indoor Salem Speedway.
All I can say is that this place is a must see for ALL Speedway Karting fans, its long, wide, banked, and BAD fast with a complimentary support cast second to none which include bathrooms that are large, heated and best of all CLEAN!, the pit area is completely undercover with a concrete floor and lighting better than most race tracks, the sound system is above average, with large grandstands in turns 1 and 2 and again in 3 and 4…the only real weakness if this even is one…is that the “Snack Shack” is on the light side as far as snack shacks go..other than that…this place has got to be a MUST SEE on any racer or race fans places to attend.
Moving on to race action on “Speedy Saturday”…Entries better than event #1 but still way down from what I’m used to seeing the past couple of years at the now defunct “Oakwood Arena” (at least for kart racing anyway)…But starting things off it was awesome to see the “Wide Open” hard charging Cameron Raymond from Troutdale, OR in attendence in his “FastMac” racing machine… he swept both heats and won the 4 lap trophy dash & took the main in the kids kart division…
In JR 1 4 CYCLE it was the “Bandit” Justin DeMars from Sandy, Or winning heat race #1 over the “Flyin’ Hawaiian” Harley Yoshii from Olympia, WA…in round 2 late entry Arianna Anderson joined in on the battle but this time is was the “Flyin’ Hawaiian” Yoshii taking the win with birthday girl Arianna Anderson second and the “Bandit” DeMars 3rd…The trophy dash was absolutely fantastic with front rowers Anderson and Yoshii battling wheel to wheel for two and half laps before Yoshii finally got clear and slipped by Anderson to take the win…In Main Event action, Yoshii and Anderson on the front row and DeMars back in row 2….Yoshii got the the jump into turn 1 with Anderson right there on the outside…they touched off of 2 and Anderson had to gather things up giving the lead to Yoshii and the second spot to the DeMars….DeMars mirrored Yoshii’s every move and then went into “Bandit” mode sneaking by Yoshii in turn 3 in the late going and drove on to the win…the win was DeMars 2nd in a row.
In SENIOR 4 CYCLE it was my first time seeing driver Chris Smith from Olympia, Wa up against the ever so lovely Paula Lorenz from Graham, WA…Round 1 went to Smith as he drove away from the green flag…in Round 2…Lorenz went with more gear and was better but still was no match for Smith who again went flag to flag for the win…in the trophy dash..again Lorenz went with more gear…again better but still had nothing for Chris Smith who was driving some pretty sweet laps as he took the dash…Come Main Event time Lorenz went with even MORE gear and was hugely better and stayed with Smith in the early laps, but Chris Smith proved too be just to much as he went on to win Senior 4 Cycle…as always the lovely Paula Lorenz flashed her pretty smile and said..”I’ll be back….only this time in a Micro!”…the lady is a racer!….
In the 250 MICRO’s it was 2009 “WInter Heat” indoor champion Darren Pierson from Chehalis, WA piloting his newly painted DP truck rebuilders, Precision Alignment machine to what appeared to be a clean ‘Sweep’ over Graham, Washington’s Dave Lorenz & Woodland, Washington’s newcomer Eric Dehning…by taking both heat races and the trophy dash…but in Main Event action Pierson who was well out in front and looked to be checked out…did just that and “checked out” the turn 3 inside berm and got high sided…giving the lead to Lorenz who was working the bugs out of his new #4 micro…Lorenz was impressive carrying the left front tire down the front and back straights…and carried himself to the checkerd flag with Dehning in second and Pierson having to settle for third.
YAMAHA HEAVY was one everyone was up on the fence for …with an absolutely “stellar” field of Speedway drivers includiing defending opening event winner Joe “The Ironman” Stackman from Graham, Wa, defending BK2 champion and 2006 World Ice Champion “Rocket” Ronnie Cox, many time IKF EXPERT and elder statesman Phil “The Ace” Pfau ( 62 years young & can still “Do it in the dirt” ), Darrin “The Crusher” Marcum, the beautiful and bad fast Kelsey Johnson, Newcomer David “The Pest” Neil, Veteran Hadley Loveall, John “Highlife” Miller, the young speedster Corey ‘The Hitman’ Marcum, and the ‘Italian assasin’ Chris Passanante….
Heat #1 went to the “Ace” Phil Pfau…who after a brief layoff is back..it is unbelieveable to watch Pfau who is 62 years old drive like he did 20 years ago…with the style and smoothness that Pfau Pfans are used to watching…The “Rocket” Ronnie Cox was right with Pfau and finished heat #1 in the runner up spot…Heat #2 proved a complete reversal of heat #1 with Pfau taking a shot early in the going and falling back to 4th…Masterfully Pfau drove his way back through the field back to second and was closing in on the “Rocket” Cox, but fell just short with the defending BK2 Champion taking heat #2….The trophy dash had 4 of the finest speedway drivers in the NW with Cox, Pfau, Stackman & Passanante going at it for 4 furious laps with the “Italian Assasin” Chris Passanante taking the checkers…Come Main Event time it was every man and woman for themselves as the field shuffled and diced for all 20 laps…it was Pfau right out of the gate with a David Copperfield move at the start to take the lead off of turn 2 on the green….and it was all Pfau until a late race caution erased the board and the real action began….On the restart, Pfau on the knobs got caught off guard and fell way back to the 4th spot handing the lead to Cox…Pfau battling back made an inside move on Cox going into 3 and the two got together with Cox spinning up high in turn 3 ending his night and handing the lead to Darrin “the Crusher” Marcum…and the victory…at the stripe it was anybodys guess, but Marcum took the win, with Pfau second, and Joe ‘the Ironman” Stackman who was battling new chasiss woes in the third spot…
YAMAHA LIGHT was also excellent with the “Ironman” taking heat #1 and the trophy dash..Daughter Becca Stackman in only her 2nd try in a two stroke machine spun in heats 1 and 2 but was really awesome in the main, and 2nd generation driver Garrett Thomas battling Tacoma’s Glenn Tower in both heats..In the Main however it was ALL Garrett Thomas as he finally tightened up his machine and was “bolted” down and ran away to win the Yamaha Light Main Event….
In the CLONE SUPERSPORT 200 divison it was what you might call the Wayne Felch show as he swept everything from start to finish…Jim Pieshel was close but just not enough as he ran runner up to Felch all night long….Jeff Nootnboom and Mark Wooten had strong showings as well finishing 3rd and 4th with Dave Whitney, Lindsay Mediarmid, Doug Felch, and Bill Neiman rounding out the Supersport 200’s…..
MICRO 600’s put on a helluva show for only having 5 cars..(yes, I said ONLY 5 cars!) with young hotshoe and Ford Focus standout Keegan Walmer from Portland, OR in the house along with Burlington, Washington’s standout Greg Hamilton, the “Gunslinger” Justin McConnville from Dundee, OR, Neighbors from Hillsboro,OR Dylan Marsh & Jeff Hatcher…
Heat 1 goes to Walmer…Heat 2 Walmer and McConnville get together in turn 3 and Walmer retires with engine trouble while McConnville goes on for the win…the dash as well goes to the “Gunslinger” McConnville ( this 13 year old is amazing and fun to watch)….the Main is like the shoot out at the Salem Speedway corral with McConnville battling Hamilton, Marsh, and Hatcher….Walmer replaces an engine during heat 2 and the dash but after running some safety laps decides to safe it and does not start the main….Walmer will be on his way to the “turkey” show down at Irwindale this week…So good luck Keegan, Go get em kiddo!!!!..Tim Marsh Jr. steps in for Son Dylan who had just had shoulder surgery and was still healing and hurting to much too start the main….at the stripe it was a dominate McConnville taking the top spot with Hamilton, Hatcher and Marsh 2nd, 3rd, & 4th respectively……If you have not seen these Micro’s run you are missing out….these guys “WHEEL” and the cars are absolute pieces of art…and the racing is …well let’s just say AWESOME and leave it at that…..
160 OPEN QUARTER MIDGETS…had only 2 entries!…2 where have all the quarter midgets gone?….but it was the “Flyin Hawaiian” Harley Yoshii and Walker “Getter” Dunn going at it with Dunn taking heat 1 after Yoshii has carb troubles and blubbers his way to second…Heat 2 Yoshii plays magician ( his former nickname)..and sneaks past Dunn in the late going to take the win in heat 2 and wins the dash as well… the Main was looking to be a heck of a show until Dunn has to retire after losing a chain on the backstrech on the drop of the green flag…..
In the WINGLESS OPEN CAGE KART division…it was Robert “bullrider” Venner from Crabtree, OR ridin his bareback bucking, buck snorting 500cc animal to a clean sweep over newcomer and first timer Chris Smith from Olympia, Wa…These cage kart drivers are a different breed altogether…it takes a special kind of driver to handle these snortin horsepower handfuls….there will be a bunch of em’ come the end of February for a Cage kart rodeo as the “King of the West” open cage kart show gallops into town….you will NOT WANT to miss this…trust me!
and lastly but most certainly not leastly….it was the MIGHTY OPENS…these are up to 200cc alcohol burnin’, rear end puckerin’ machines …some with single engines some with dual engines…its a run “whatcha brung” extravaganza….and it was ALL and I MEAN ALL T.J. “the wheelman” Bexton driving a 125 cc Parilla “Sudam” sweeping everything…untouched by anything! (Singin’ “you can’t touch this” by M.C. Hammer) as he won both heats, the dash, and in the MAIN EVENT bexton was the last man standing as all 7 of the other entries fell out due to mechanical issues or spins….
All and all it was a GREAT night of racing even though entries were a little on the shy side…there is no doubt that this is the finest facility that you will find ANYWHERE on the west coast and maybe even the country for an indoor speedway karting venue….so much so that 3rd Annual Budda Kinser Memorial “BK3” has chosen it to be the host track for the event on January 29th….all racers are welcome and there is a $500.00 to win purse in the “Open” class which had 50 entries last year…Defending BK2 Champ “Rocket” Ronnie Cox, and inagrual BK1 champ Renee “The Tomboy” Angel have both committed to running this years event….this my fellow race fanatics is a MUST see…a FIVE STAR racing event given by ProSoundAudioServices….T-shirts on sale NOW for $20.00 with the proceeds going back into the event fund to enable a multitude of quality prizes..Check out Ronnie Cox’s Facebook page to purchase…. AND Rick Grout has put up an additional 100 bones to split and paid out to the 7th and 8th place finishers in the BK3 Main Event….do NOT plan ANYTHING for January 29th, 2011 except for being at the Salem Speedway for the largest speedway dirt race west of the Mississippi!….We’ll see you there…next event for “Speedy Saturday” is December 11th…for more information check the Salem Speedway page on Facebook or the ProSoundAudioServices page………until next time, I’m Terry Bridges and thanks for readin’!…..