ALGER, WA – Sunny skies and warm weather greeted the drivers and fans at Skagit Speedway on Saturday night and when the dust settled on the evening, the talk of the night was the performance of Cory Samuelson in winning the Sportsman Sprint Main Event in thrilling fashion. Other feature winners on the night were Brock Lemley in the 410s, Chase Goetz in the NW USAC HPD Midgets and Freddie Vela in the Outlaw Tuners.
In his second season of Sportsman Sprint competition, Cory Samuelson of Lake Stevens has made a big jump in his program. Samuelson nearly won the opening night main event, having led 19 of the 20 laps of the main before ending up second. On this night, Samuelson was the hunter instead of the hunted, as Cory Swatzina rode the cushion to the early lead with Samuelson in tow. The lead pair quickly caught the back of the field, with Swatzina enjoying a six to eight car length lead as slower cars came into play. Swatzina dismissed of the slower cars with ease, but began experimenting with different lines in order to find new ways around the cars running his line. Samuelson seized the opportunity to close on Swatzina during this time, pulling to within a car length as they approached lap 17. Swatzina continued to work the high side as they approached Roger Oudman to lap him, with Samuelson nearly on his rear nerf. As Swatzina peaked around Oudman entering turn three, Samuelson pulled even with him in the low groove and the pair drag raced to the line with Samuelson edging out Swatzina to take the lead. The pair battled side by side into one and two, with Samuelson pulling ahead down the back straight, then taking to the high groove to try and pull by Oudman. Swatzina countered with the same low move Samuelson had just used, but Samuelson pulled hard off the top and retained the lead, then passed Oudman entering turn one to give him some breathing room. When the checkered flag flew on lap 20, it was Samuelson taking his first Skagit Speedway win followed by Swatzina and a hard closing Steve Parker in third. The race went wire to wire with no caution flags. Quick time on the evening was set by Bill Rude. Samuelson, Cale Brooke and Justin Youngquist won the heat races. Greg Otis won the B Main.
In the 410 Sprint Car main event, Daniel Anderson jetted out to an early advantage at the drop of the green with Brock Lemley in tow. Anderson, from Te Anua, New Zealand, put on as good a performance as the Skagit Speedway crowd has seen from him as he paced the field with Lemley from Bellingham slowly narrowing the advantage as he found where the Bob & Lori Scott owned sprinter wanted to run. With traffic looming, Anderson chose to try and lap Kevin Smith up high entering turn three. Lemley took advantage and drove hard to the bottom of three, then slid up to take away the line from Anderson exiting the corner and took the lead. From there, Lemley checked out, streaking away for the win, followed by Matt Jensen and Austen Wheatley. Trey Starks set quick time. Lemley also won the heat.
Chase Goetz mad a late race rally to win the NW USAC HPD Midgets main event. Goetz, from Snohomish, started fifth and worked to third quickly before engaging in a long battle with Al Goldie for second. Goldie held strong for a long time before Goetz caught him drifting up the track in turn two and powered underneath him to take second around lap 17. At the same time, race leader Garrett Thomas reportedly began having oil pressure issues and his previously blistering lap times fell off by nearly half a second. With nothing but clean air in between Thomas and Goetz, Chase quickly narrowed the margin, and then slid up in front of Thomas to take the lead as the pair came to the white flag. As the checkered flag fell, it was Goetz taking the win with Thomas holding on for second and Goldie scoring third. Goetz also won his heat race. Hannah Lindquist won the other heat.
In Outlaw Tuner Action, Freddie Vela scored the main event win despite fighting a car with shifting issues. Vela’s Mitsubishi was having problems shifting from second to third gear, making restarts tricky for him, which showed as numerous times over the caution filled event, the second place drivers, including but not limited to Becky Boudreau, Kevin Reuter, Cliff Ballenger and Matt Powers, all showed him a door panel entering turn one on a number of occasions. Vela powered through the shifting issues and his car got to speed, he streaked away from the field to score the win. Ballenger and Boudreau battled for second with Cliff getting the better of Becky at the final flag. Reuter and Powers won the heat races.
On tap at Skagit Speedway – June 14th will feature the 360 Sprint Cars, Sportsman Sprints, and Outlaw Tuners. Ticket information, as well as updated points and information on this year’s Dirt Cup presented by Jack in the Box are available online at www.skagitspeedway.com.