Sunset Speedway Park Gets Another Night Of Racing In The Books
By Ben Deatherage
(Photos Courtesy of Steve Veltman)
The Sunset Speedway Park had an entertaining night of racing in front of a large crowd of fans on Saturday June 8th. The night was the first round of the two race IMCA Modified Madness mini-series. Also in competition for the evening were the Northwest Extreme Sprints, Midgets, and 4-Bees.
The IMCA Modified feature was a thriller and had fans on their feet. Getting the lead on lap three Sandy’s Chris Hallberg in the Discount Race Car Parts #01 was the car to beat for much of the race. Hallberg would continue to show the way and went unchallenged until right around the halfway mark when a caution would come out. On the ensuing restart Doug Lockwood of Aloha would put his Aloha Station/Perfection Automotive/Ross Electric #66 FR1 in the mix for the win.
On lap twenty-two Lockwood and Hallberg would go door to door and race side by side for several laps with just inches separating the two. Lockwood would capture the race lead around lap twenty-nine and would lead the rest of the distance to become the third different winner in as many races at SSP when it comes to the IMCA Modifieds.
“That was a good clean race when we were side by side,” commented Lockwood, “the first ten laps there was a lot of good racing all over the place. The car felt really good in the last half and really came to me.”
Chris Hallberg would finish a respectable second while crossing the stripe in third was the Prime-X Contracting #37 TRE of Hillsboro driver Steve Suckow. Completing the top five finishers were Rob Ireland of Banks in the Ireland and Ireland at Law #8 in fourth and the VP Braille Services/Jody’s Nothin’ But Fun Bar & Grill #57 TRE of Vancouver, Washington’s Kenny Miller in fifth. Heat race winners earlier in the night were Kenny Miller and the Joel Olson Trucking/Spiralz Salon/Hinkle Fisheries #8D of Vernonia driver Doug Davenport while Rob Ireland was the victor in the trophy dash.
In the Northwest Extreme Sprint Cars it was the Mitch Hoffses show once again. The Beaverton ace would seize the lead in his Schram Brothers Excavating #5 Rocket on lap four after making the pass on Dave Walters of Gresham. Hoffses would go on to lead the rest of the way in dominating fashion to win his third win in the class and his fourth win overall at SSP in 2013.
“The car setup was great,” said Hoffses, “my dad did such a good job he definitely is a set up master. The track was really nice too. It was way smooth and slick.”
Dave Walters would place second in the All In Property Investments/1-800-SELL-NOW/Hollywood Signs and Graphics #67 Zeitler followed by Jake Gilman of Forest Grove in third in his Maverick Welding Supply #11X Maxim. Rounding up the finishing order was Ryan Bothwell from Oregon City in the BDR Racing #19 Avenger in fourth. Two sets of heat races were ran with Mitch Hoffses winning them both and earning the triumph in the trophy dash was Walters.
The Midgets were on hand for the first time in 2013 and they would put on a good show. Mitch Hoffses, pulling double duty, led the early goings but had to pull his eBay Motors/Hoosier Tire Midwest/Ridgecrest Homes #5H Hawk off the race track due to mechanical problems. That would give the lead to Milwaukie’s Pat Bliss driving the second Hoffses Midget. Bliss would keep the right rear on the fence and lead the rest of the way to put the Ridgecrest Homes/Pro-Fab Custom Cars & Engines/Herz Precision Parts #5B Hawk in victory lane.
Finishing the evening in second place was Glenn Bittrolf of Springfield in the #15 Beast while finishing third was Lance Hallmark of McMinnville driving his Foster Fab/G.W. Machine/Jason Ocker Machine & Fab #8 Spike. Fourth place went to the #22 of Scappoose’s Mark Hinkle, after a four year hiatus, and fifth was Mitch Hoffses. Both Hoffses and Pat Bliss were heat race winners while Hoffses was victorious in the trophy dash.
The 4-Bee division had another barn burner of a main event. Chris Gaboury of Vancouver, Washington in the #5 entry would take the lead from the #12 of Jason Blythe from Buxton on lap five. Gaboury would show the way to the white flag before issues with his right front tire and wheel forced his car to push in the turns heavily. This gave an opportunity to the #14 of John Oyler of Scappoose to make a move low and take the lead and go on to earn the win.
Mike Mastrangelo of Banks, who had won the last three main events in a row, was second followed by Gaboury in third. The balance of the top five consisted of the #68 of John Henry from Hillsboro in fourth and the Ram Light Truck Salvage/Napa Auto Parts #48 of Portland’s John Gartner in fifth. Gaboury and the #22 of Nick Henry from Hillsboro were heat winners and earning the trophy dash win was Jason Blythe.
The Sunset Speedway Park will be quite busy next weekend with three events scheduled to take place. First Saturday June 15th will be Fan Appreciation Night at the Banks bullring with the Northwest Extreme Late Models Series, Northwest Extreme Sprints, Northwest Extreme Modifieds, 4-Bees, and Womens divisions all in competition. On Sunday afternoon on the 16th the first race of the 300-Lap Iron Man Enduro Series will take place on the ¼-mile clay oval. On Monday the 17th the Wild Wild West Modified Shootout tour will come into town to take on the local IMCA Modified competition. It is going to be three great events so don’t miss out. For more information log on to www.sunsetspeedwaypark.com.
Saturday June 8th, 2013
Sunset Speedway Park
Heat Race Winners: Pat Bliss (1), Mitch Hoffses (2)
Trophy Dash Winner: Mitch Hoffses
A-Feature: 1. Pat Bliss, 2. Glenn Bittrolf, 3. Lance Hallmark, 4. Mark Hinkle, 5. Mitch Hoffses, DNS Tom Lauzon
Northwest Extreme Sprints
Heat Race Winners: Mitch Hoffses (1), Mitch Hoffses (2)
Trophy Dash Winner: Dave Walters
A-Feature: 1. Mitch Hoffses, 2. Dave Walters, 3. Jake Gilman, 4. Ryan Bothwell, DNS Sammy Wright
Heat Race Winners: Kenny Miller (1), Doug Davenport (2)
Trophy Dash Winner: Rob Ireland
A-Feature: 1. Doug Lockwood, 2. Chris Hallberg, 3. Steve Suckow, 4. Rob Ireland, 5. Kenny Miller, 6. Shawn Dorie, 7. Doug Davenport, 8. Jake Vanortwick, 9. Donald Schott, 10. Tanner Baldwin, 11. David Day, 12. Aaron Elwess
Heat Race Winners: Chris Gaboury (1), Nick Henry (2)
Trophy Dash Winner: Jason Blythe
A-Feature: 1. John Oyler, 2. Mike Mastrangelo, 3. Chris Gaboury, 4. John Henry, 5. John Gartner, 6. Clint Meyers, 7. Gary Jones, 8. Cody Jones, 9. Travis Koch, 10. Chris Cannon, 11. James Biggs, 12. Ronald Sweere, 13. Jason Blythe, DNS Nick Henry