Grays Harbor Raceway Gets Race #2 In
By Ben Deatherage
(Photos Courtesy of Jim Marshall)
A full pit area of race cars and a great night of racing was on hand for the second race of the 2013 campaign at Grays Harbor Raceway on Saturday May 4th. Despite only three classes running the features proved to be thrilling for fans making it out to the 3/8-mile clay oval. Divisions competing included the 360 Sprints, Shipwreck Beads IMCA Modifieds, and USAC Ford Focus Midgets.
In the 360 Sprint feature Reece Goetz of Snohomish would earn the lead on lap three after passing Henry Van Dam and would look for his first win of the year. Goetz would hold off Van Dam on several occasions as he tried to retrieve the lead but Goetz would continue to lead. Despite a late charge by Van Dam the Great Western Transport/Elma Lanes #9R Eagle of Goetz would keep his mount in front and would pick up the win.
The Kovash Logging/Johanson Excavating #33V A.R.T. of Enumclaw’s Henry Van Dam was second with defending champion J.J. Hickle of Quilcene placing third in his Meyer Electric/Kitsap Powdercoating #3 XXX. Crossing the line in fourth place was the Our Community Credit Union/Bulldog Trailers #0J of Jay Cole from Shelton and Evan Margeson of Tacoma in his TFC Plating #50 XXX rounded up the top five finishers. Earlier in the night Hickle was quickest in qualifying with a time of 13.327 seconds while heat race winners were Hickle and Margeson.
In Shipwreck Beads IMCA Modified action McCleary native Jeff Foster had the field covered for much of the distance in the J&F Automotive/Baby Ready Mix #8. But a caution on lap twenty would bunch the field up and Foster would lose the lead to the winner of week one on the restart, Scott Miller. The Shelton driver set a rapid pace in his Blue Bear Park/Blondie’s Restaurant #26 Shaw and looked to make it two in a row. But in the last few laps two-time and defending track champ Joe German from Wishkah was on the move.
German for much of the early stages was right behind Jeff Foster running in second. He would have to go to the rear of the field during the last caution due to a rock entering his cockpit and hitting his battery switch bringing him to a halt. German was able to get back on the track and come from behind and pass Scott Miller for the lead on the high side on lap twenty-six. German would lead the rest of the distance to win his first race of the season in his Wishkah Iron Works/Ozman Services Inc. #75X Skyrocket.
“During that race something came thru the car and hit me in the chest and then hit the battery switch,” said German, “either then that it was a good night for us and the track was really racy. The first race of the year we had some weird issues with our fuel filter getting plugged up so hopefully all that stuff is behind us.”
Scott Miller would finish in second followed by Cosmopolis driver Tom Sweatman in the Sweatman Trucking/D&D Dyno #11 machine. Finishing fourth was the Williams Family Salsa/DNC Competition Engines #14 Dirt Works of Seabeck’s Craig Moore and Jeff Foster completed the top five finishers in fifth. Heat race winners earlier in the night were Joe German and Tom Sweatman.
Last but not least the USAC Ford Focus Midgets were in the house. Garrett Thomas of McCleary showed the way for most of the distance in his Olson Landscaping/Martelli Distributing #14 Beast. With only one caution occurring the race went pretty much green to checker and Thomas started off with a big lead in the opening laps.
Eventually Snohomish’s Chase Goetz, winner of the first night back in April, closed the gap and started to put pressure on Thomas. Thomas would keep Goetz in check despite the Sno-Lynn Machine #3S of Robbie Vaughn from Snohomish coming into the picture to make it a three car race for the lead.
But on the final lap Goetz was able to get a good run on the bottom of turns three and four finding an opening and making it past Thomas for the win. For Goetz it marks a perfect start to the season with two wins in two starts in his Great Western Transport/Elma Lanes #91 Beast.
“Winning two in a row feels great,” commented Chase, “hopefully the next time we come out we can make it three in a row. On the last lap I just saw an opening and decided to try and pass Garrett. I got to thank my sponsors Elma Lanes, Great Western Transport, Sandblasters Inc. and Powdercoating Inc. for supporting me.”
Garrett Thomas would cross the line in second with Robbie Vaughn right behind him in third. Finishing fourth would be Montesano driver Jeremy Miller in the MASCO Petroleum #44 Beast and earning fifth was Dougie James of Shoreline driving the James Brown Racing #29. James was fast time of the evening in qualifying at 16.944 seconds and heat race winners were Ariel Biggs, now living in Ocosta, in the Don Emery owned #11E entry and Chase Goetz.
Grays Harbor Raceway will return with race three of 2013 next Saturday May 11th for Ladies Night. All ladies and mothers will get into the races for $5.00. Classes that will be in competition will include the Shipwreck Beads IMCA Modifieds, Cut Rate Auto Parts Street Stocks, Hornets and the debut of the Northwest Extreme Sprints. For more information log on to www.graysharborraceway.com or call the brand new Northwest Tracks Hotline at (360)-699-RACE. Mylaps results can be found at http://www.mylaps.com/en/events/892488.
Saturday May 4th, 2013
Grays Harbor Raceway
Fast Time: J.J. Hickle, 13.327
Heat Race Winners: J.J. Hickle (1), Evan Margeson (2)
A-Feature: 1. Reece Goetz, 2. Henry Van Dam, 3. J.J. Hickle, 4. Jay Cole, 5. Evan Margeson, 6. Cam Smith, 7. Mike Romig, 8. Doug Peter
Shipwreck Beads IMCA Modifieds
Heat Race Winners: Joe German (1), Tom Sweatman (2)
A-Feature: 1. Joe German, 2. Scott Miller, 3. Tom Sweatman, 4. Craig Moore, 5. Jeff Foster, 6. Kyler Moore, 7. Allan Muenchow, 8. Zack Simpson, 9. Carl Larson, 10. Scott Westley, 11. Kevin Keller, 12. Kris Asche, 13. Del Schnitzer, 14. Rayun McMichael
USAC Ford Focus Midgets
Fast Time: Dougie James, 16.944
Heat Race Winners: Ariel Biggs (1), Chase Goetz (2)
A-Feature: 1. Chase Goetz, 2. Garrett Thomas, 3. Robbie Vaughn, 4. Jeremy Miller, 5. Dougie James, 6. Todd Hartman, 7. Chance Crum, 8. Annika Johanson, 9. Ariel Biggs, 10. Lee St. Paul