By Cole Sorenson,
Open wheel race cars were the focal point of this past weekend’s action at Western Speedway, with the track playing host to the West Coast Tire and Wheel Strawberry Cup, with Winged Sprint Cars, the Richlock Rentals Non Winged Sprint Cars, and the Smith ‘N’ Gordon Drywall CAMRA Vintage Modifieds on both Friday and Saturday.
The Friday Non Winged Sprint Car main event had drivers battling to win the Billy Foster Memorial, with James Miller and Mike Haslam leading the field to the green. On lap three, Mike Meeres would take over the top spot, before Jeff Montgomery tracked him down for the lead on lap thirteen. Meeres and Guy Barrett would get together on lap fifteen, bringing out the caution. On the ensuing restart, Ryan Orchard would get tangled up with Deter Lejeune, bringing out another caution. On the restart, Montgomery would check out, and bring home his first win of the season, followed by Jeff Bird, Guy Barrett, Brad Purdey, and Jarrod Heap. The dash win went to Jeff Montgomery, with heat race wins going to Mike Meeres and Jeff Bird.
The CAMRA Vintage Modifieds had two main events, with Ralph Monhay and Dale Nyste leading the field to the green. Monhay would jump out to an early lead, and the 81 year old would take the win ahead of Ken Welkie, Dick Nelson, Bob Wills, and Dale Nyste. In the second main event, Rhody Hayes and Frank Volz led the field to the green, with Hayes taking the win over Frank Volz, Kurt Rompain, Chris Root, and Jeff Cook. Dash wins went to Bob Wills, Dale Nyste, Chris Root, and Jeff Cook, with heat race wins going to Bob Wills and Rhody Hayes.
The Winged Sprint Cars rolled off for their 20 lap main, with Paul and Matt Verhagen leading the field to the green. Coming out of turn four to take the green, Robbie Price and Kyle Vantreight made contact, knocking both drivers out of contention. On the restart, Duane Zeinstra took the lead, before Jeff Montgomery stormed into first, going on to win over Zeinstra, Paul Verhagen, Matt Verhagen, and Phil Lagan. The dash win went to Jeff Montgomery, with the heat race win going to Robbie Price.
Night two for the Non Winged Sprint Cars had Shane Woolcock and James Miller on the front row. Wayde Heckford, subbing for Brad Purdey, took the lead on lap two. On lap six, several cars would get together in turn one, with Jarrod Heap and Mike Haslam getting knocked out with damage to both cars. On the first attempt at a restart, Guy Barrett would spin, setting up another attempt. Barrett would charge through the field, and on lap ten, took the lead. Barrett and Jeff Montgomery would go onto wage a ten lap battle for the lead, but Barrett would hold onto win by a car length. Montgomery, Jeff Bird, Deter Lejeune, and Ryan Orchard would round out the top five. Guy Barrett would win the dash, and also take a heat race win, with Jeff Montgomery taking the other heat race win.
The Vintage Modifieds again had two main events, with Ken Welkie winning the first main event, followed by Ralph Monhay, Jeff Cook, Dale Nyste, and Chris Drakos. The second main event had a father and son battle for the win, with Jimmy White beating dad Marty to the line by two thousandths of a second. Kirt Rompain, Frank Volz, and Rhody Hayes rounded out the top five. Dash wins went to Dale Nyste, Jimmy White, and Marty White, with heat race wins going to Jeff Cook and Jimmy White.
The Winged Sprints pushed off for their main event, with Paul Verhagen and Duane Zeinstra leading the field to the green. Zeinstra would jump out to an early lead, with Kyle Vantreight and Robbie Price in hot pursuit. Price would take the lead with a bold cross over move on Zeinstra down the back straight, and held off Jeff Montgomery, Duane Zeinstra, Kyle Vantreight, and Matt Verhagen for the win. The dash win went to Kyle Vantreight, with the heat race win going to Jeff Montgomery. Montgomery would take the overall points win, and his second Strawberry Cup in a row.
The next race at Western Speedway is the Don Mann Excavating Night at the Races, featuring the Keg Late Model Series, who are racing for the Rick O’Dell Memorial Trophy, as well as the Galaxy Motors Stock Cars, Mini Stocks, Dwarf Cars, and the OTRA.