Two Vancouver drivers crash winner's circle
Former Columbia County Racing Association division champions Bob Berg, Greg Brumbaugh and Ryan Martinez won main events in River City Speedway's second week of stock car racing at the Columbia County Fairgrounds.
Two drivers from Vancouver, Washington — Sande Simmet and Zander Koch — also won main events in the Saturday, May 11 lineup in St. Helens.
Simmet was a two-time winner as he captured the 30-lap Four-Cylinder Division main and heat race.
Rookie driver Trenton Brogan of Kelso, Wash., who won the May 4 Four-Cylinder season opener, was runner-up in the main in his Ram Light Truck Salvage/Economy Auto Wrecking 1996 Nissan Altima. Jerry Rouleau took third, followed by Rudy Stellflug, James Schultz and Tiffany Berg.
Brogan won the dash, Simmet won heat 2 and Lynn Yeaman won heat 1.
Brogan is a first-year driver in the Four-Cylinder class this year, and he's considered as one of the top contenders in the series, particularly since he leads the point standings after two events.
"It was a pretty good race, and I was just hoping to get around No. 22 (Jerry Rouleau) a little bit quicker than I did," said Brogan, 16, who won the Tracer Division title last season. "After I got past him for second place, then I was trying to catch the leader (Simmet). I was gaining on him pretty good, but I just wasn't fast enough. I'm definitely looking forward to the next race and it will be fun to get back onto the track for another race."
Koch, 10, recorded a sweep for the second straight week as he won the Tracer Division (ages 10-15) dash, heat and main with his Dodge Neon. Paige Gump of St. Helens was the runner-up in all three Tracer events.
Berg, the defending Tuner Division champion, captured the 25-lap main event for the second straight week in his Cozy Lawn Maintenance/Eaton's Tire & Service Center-sponsored 1997 Neon.
Berg started fourth in the seven-car lineup, and he passed Longview's Jason Scheibel midway through the race to get the lead.
Scheibel was one of four drivers who led at various times in the race.
Dan McDonald of Vancouver led the early portions of the event and then Joel Davis of Kelso moved up front and led for quite a few laps around the 1/4-mile clay oval track.
Berg was able to build a big lead near the end of the race, and he won by a half lap over Scheibel. Damion Owen took third, followed by TJ Landis, Davis, McDonald and Matt Brown.
Berg was a two-time winner as he also won the heat race, and McDonald won the trophy dash.
Berg's wife, Tiffany, drives a Dodge Neon in the Four-Cylinder division, and they're the only husband/wife duo that competes at the speedway.
"Tiffany did really good with sixth place in the Four-Cylinder main, which is a good accomplishment," said Berg, 55. "Scheibel also did a pretty darn good job in trying to keep up with me in the Tuner main."
Two-time defending Street Stock Division champion Brumbaugh led the three-car 20-lap main event from start to finish to get the win in his CLT Trucking/Hoyt Construction-sponsored 1985 Chevrolet Malibu.
Warren's Terry King, who won the May 4 CCRA season opener, took second.
Portland's Tom Zywicki was third.
King won the heat race, and Brumbaugh won the trophy dash.
"It was a good, clean race, and I had a really good day," said Brumbaugh, who is hoping to win a third consecutive division title this year. "The beauty of it is that even though we only had three cars, Terry, Tom and I had a good time and we never bumped into each other.
"It would be nice if we had more cars, though, and it would be more enjoyable for people to watch. The way things are now, if Terry gets in front, I can't catch him, and if I get up front, he can't catch me. We just need to get some more cars, though, because it would make the races a lot more fun."
Martinez, 29, a two-time CCRA Dwarf Car Division champion (2012, 2013), won the 11-car main event, followed by Jake VanOrtwick of Scappoose, Justin Demars of Gresham, Teagan Fischer of Warren and Dave Brune to round out the top five.
Demars won heat 2, and Brune won heat 1.
Fischer, the two-time defending series champion, won the dash and was competing in her first race this year at the speedway with her TFT Construction/Finish Line Graphics-sponsored dwarf car.
Fischer's dad, Tom, drove a car in heat 2 and took third place. For Tom Fischer, owner of TFT Construction, it marked the first time that he had participated in a race in 20 years.
Demars won heat 2, and Dave Brune won heat 1.
"I was pretty happy to see lots of cars in the race, so that was really nice, and I had a pretty good day," said Fischer, 18, who took third place in heat 2. "For most of the race, I was in a good battle for fifth place (with Brune), and that was lots of fun. The top five cars were all very close at the end of the race.
"My dad hasn't raced too much recently, and he was pretty excited, and I enjoyed watching him too. His friend, Norm Miller, was also competing in the Dwarf Cars for the first time ever as well."
The CCRA's third week of action is Saturday beginning at 5 p.m. at the fairgrounds motor sports facility.
The classes are Street Stock, Sportsman, Super Stock, Modified, Dwarf Car, Four-Cylinder, Tuner, Tracer, Sunset Challenge and the Pacific Micro Sprint Association.