When the dust settled on the last 2003-season U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Co. Northern Sprint Tour race to run at Grays Harbor Raceway in Elma, WA, Tim Shaffer, visiting World of Outlaws driver from Aliquippa, PA was in the winner's circle. "This is...
When the dust settled on the last 2003-season U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Co. Northern Sprint Tour race to run at Grays Harbor Raceway in Elma, WA, Tim Shaffer, visiting World of Outlaws driver from Aliquippa, PA was in the winner's circle.
"This is really different, running a 360," stated Shaffer. "Paul Silva and his crew gave me a great car tonight. We were able to get out front at the start and keep it there the whole race." "Shawna Wilskey came out of nowhere there on the second restart but I was able to hold her off. She did a great job of driving tonight."
Shaffer took the lead from the out side front row position, and except for a couple of times held a comfortable lead throughout the 30-lap event.
Early on Everett, WA's Rick Fauver, in his first NST appearance of the season, battled with Wilskey before ending up in a long three way battle with Glenn Borden, Jr. of Shelton, WA and Jimmy Carter of Cloverdale, BC for 3rd to 5th.
With the leaders threading their way through lapped traffic, the first caution of the race came on lap 15 when points leader Roger Crockett of Eugene, OR spun in turns 3 and 4.
Snoqualmie, WA driver Mark Torres brought out the yellow flag again two laps later with a turn 2 spin, at which time Crockett made a quick in and out trip to the pits.
On the restart Wilskey, out of Mt. Vernon, WA, gave Shaffer his wake-up call, taking the lead by going high in turns 1 and 2, with Shaffer regaining the lead through the next two turns.
As the laps worked through the mid-stage, the leaders opened up around the track with most of the close action in the last half of the field until Marysville, WA's Jeff Bell closed up the cars on lap 24 by flipping in turn four to bring out the red flag.
Wilskey tried another high side move on the restart but Shaffer neatly closed the door on the back straight.
Going into the white flag lap Fauver and Carter made contact in turn one while battling for 3rd place, with both cars spinning and going to the rear of the pack. This moved Sedro Woolley, WA driver Chad Hillier, Shawn Smith of Nampa, ID and Cottage Grove, OR's Dale Smith into a top five position, which they all held.
On the final two laps, Crockett took to the high groove and taking the express lane he passed several cars to come back to a 7th place finish.
Following the event Wilskey commented, "Tim ran a good race. The only shot I had was if he was to make a mistake." "I have to thank Bardahl, Oberto, Hoosier and my team for giving me a good race car. "Tim had a good race car, and I'm sorry Rickey and Jim had their problem but we will take the third", said Hillier. Now we're going to put a 410 in it and see what happens with the Outlaws the next two days."
Australian Peter Murphy won the B-main, taking the lead when Brandon Harkness and Jayme Barnes, running first and second, made contact on lap three.
With both cars out for the night, it was Murphy leading to the checkered flag with Bell, Jay Cole and Brian Ash following and getting transfers to the A-feature event also. Brad Holmes was in the midst of the transfer spot battle until suddenly dropping back with five laps to go. Mark Torres moved to challenge for fourth with three to go but came up short at the finish line.
In heat race action it was Crockett taking the first race of the evening after an early race battle with second place finisher Randy Van Aagten. Steve Walker took a nasty flip in the fourth turn on lap-6 after Andy Jacobson made contact with him. Walker did return for the B-main.
Heat two went to Jeff Hodgson over D. Smith with Wilskey and Hillier following.
Dawn-L Morrison went wire to wire in heat three, winning over S. Smith, Fauver and Glenn Borden, Jr.
In the final heat Shaffer set the pace with Barry Martinez, T.J. Winningham and Jacobson also going to the A-feature event.
Wilskey took the dash win to earn the A-feature pole position. She was followed by Shaffer, Fauver, Carter, Borden, Jr., and Hillier.
Thirty-nine cars were in attendance with Brandon Harkness setting fast time with a 13.624 second lap. During opening ceremonies, a 3-car memorial lap was run for long time fan and one time car owner Warren Marshall. Cars making the lap were Dan Dunlap #21, Marc Huson, #3 and Warren's former driver Dick Wilskey #5sp.
Fast Time -- Brandon Harkness -- 13.624.
Heat 1 -- Roger Crockett, Randy Van Aagten, Tony Menard, Jimmy Carter, Brandon Harkness, Mark Torres, Mike Harris, Steve Walker, Jeff Bell, Ron Reed.
Heat 2 -- Jeff Hodgson, Dale Smith, Shawna Wilskey, Chad Hillier, Peter Murphy, Rob Johnson, Dan Dunlap, Steve Vague, Brian Ash, Travis Jacobson.
Heat 3 -- Dawn-L Morrison, Shawn Smith, Rick Fauver, Glenn Borden, Jr., John Youngquist, Jay Cole, Henry Van Dam, Brad Holmes, Robert McNultly.
Heat 4 -- Tim Shaffer, Barry Martinez, T.J. Winningham, Andy Jacobson, Jayme Barnes, David Gilmore, Jim Kirkham, Randy Pierce, Eddie Evans.
Dash -- Wilskey, Shaffer, Fauver, Carter, Border, Hillier.
C-Main -- Reed, Dunlap, McNulty, Vague, Harris, Kirkham.
B-Main -- Murphy, Bell, Cole, Ash, Torres, Holmes, Walker, Johnson, McNulty, Van Dam, Pierce, Dunlap, Reed, Gilmore, Barnes, Harkness, Youngquist.
A-Main -- Shaffer, Wilskey, Hillier, S. Smith, D. Smith, Morrison, Crockett, Murphy, Jacobson, Hodgson, Winningham, Fauver, Carter, Van Aagten, Borden, Ash, Cole, Torres, Menard, Bell.