My son Morgan graduates from the University of Tulsa today and, after a fun afternoon with the traditional bell ringing ceremony on Friday, his choice to celebrate the weekend was to make the short trip west to the Creek County Speedway in Kellyville for a night of ASCS Sooner Region sprint car action. The egg-shaped quarter-mile where turns three and four are broader than one and two stayed tacky all night long and, while passing is not easy on the narrow surface, the action was definitely entertaining.
The 29-car Sooner Region field was whittled down to twenty-one for the 25-lap feature with Seth Bergman starting on the outside of row one. The Snohomish, Washington, native was coming off a National Tour win last Saturday night at "the ditch" in West Memphis and he was also the winner the last time that the Sooner Region had visited Creek County. Bergman shot to the lead at the drop of the green and it wasn't long before he had another Snohomish driver Gary Taylor in pursuit. Taylor had started sixth and was on the move, but when he hopped the cushion in turn four he faded back to the fourth spot.
Rookie-of-the-year contender Shane Sellers was now the chaser as Bergman negotiated heavy traffic and it didn't take long for Taylor to get back into contention as well. It was an interesting race to watch as the leaders used great patience to pick their way through traffic and on several occasions it looked like Bergman might have chosen the wrong line, but he maintained the lead until the mid-race mark when the red flag flew for a Brandon Hahn flip in turn three.
On the restart it didn't take long for Taylor to get back to second and it didn't take long to catch the traffic on this tacky short-track either. Over the final five laps it looked like Taylor had a run on the leader coming off the high side of turn four, but on the final lap a slower car was in that line so Taylor had no choice but to follow Bergman through three and four to the checkers. Sellers would tighten his grip on the RotY points race with a third-place finish and Jonathan Beason nipped Sean McClelland at the line for fourth.
The track races every Friday night with just three classes, something that I am waiting for one of our Iowa area tracks to try, and on this night the Dwarf Cars took the night off as 27 Champ or Limited Sprints and 19 USRA Modifieds ran in support. A huge crowd was on hand with overflow parking required for us late arrivals and I think that all of them will agree that the wheelie that Kyle Bellm executed while trying to catch leader Jesse Frazier in the first heat race was well worth the price admission in itself. Darian Roberts made a nifty move around the outside of Kevin Cummins early to runaway with the Champ Sprint feature and in the Modified main event Chad Davis started tenth and passed Ho Dean (now there is a great racing name) with three laps remaining to win his third straight feature here in 2012.
Short and sweet this morning as I now get to experience one of the proudest moments of my lifetime. Congratulations Morgan, your father is so proud of you!