Agassiz Speedway Aug 10 2013 Mertin GM 100 Race Review
Agassiz speedway hosted race five of the OK Tire Sportsman Series presented by Advance Testing. The weather was a perfect Fraser Valley day with sun and the odd cloud. Local racers Paul Turond, Russ Janson, and Gary Amadeo’s car piloted by Aaron Willison came to support the touring series. A total of 21 ASA sportsman cars were set to compete in the Mertin GM 100.
First practiced showed the local cars were going to be tough as Ian Graham, Tom Berrow, Korbin Thomas and Paul Turond were fast right out of the box. Qualifying was tight as Tom Berrow set a very fast time of 14.249. Last car to qualify was local Ian Graham. He turned the fastest lap of 14.123, only one thousandth of a second off of the track record.
Heats were set up as 3 ten lap races. Rookie Les Hein won the C heat. Dave Olson, race 4 winner, won the B heat with Bruce Bently close behind, and the A heat had Paul Turond Battling for the lead with Matt Stephenson, a little rubbing turned into a right front flat for the X. Stephenson restarted the race and was able to win the A heat.
A ten car invert set up the main event starting lineup. The 44 car of Scott Morgan set the pole and the outside pole was taken by the 47 of Trevor Adelman. An awesome tribute to the fans with the three wide salute lead by a 2013 Camaro Pace car from Mertin GM. The 44 took the field to green and the race was on. Often a tough race to get started, the first laps are going well with side by side action all the way through the field. The 44 car is low with a line forming on the inside groove behind him. Points leader, Korbin Thomas goes the high side, with Graham and Berriau taking chase. Thomas is gaining spots fast. Lap fifteen brings, “the big one” as Trevor Adelman comes together with the 6 car of Sheldon Mayert. The two spin and the field is wrecking hard in turn 3. The 1 car hits the 86 of Berrow hard enough to tip it 3 feet of off the ground. The 6 of Mayert sustains heavy damage as does Turond in the X. Berrow was able to return late in the race, the others were done for the night. The 7 of Bob Mear and 47 head to the pits for repair as the track is cleaned and lineup sorted out. The 44 of Scott Morgan takes the field back to green, with Thomas challenging on the high side. Thomas takes the lead and begins to pull away, Berriau, Graham and Jewel take up the challenge and the 4 cars begin to lap through the field. The race has become tight as the lead pack works through lapped cars. A spinning car brings a caution on lap 34. Back to green 19,27,18,92, are nose to tail. A long green again and the 18 takes the second spot from 3 time champ Mark Berriau. Graham is on the back bumper of the 19 and the 27 and 92 battle hard. The 18 of Graham is using all the tricks but lapped traffic is both helping and hurting his bid for the lead. Late in the race the 71 of Olson is trying to stay on the lead lap, hoping for a caution. The 19 is on him and the top 4 cars are nose to tail. Thomas makes the pass and the 18, 92 follow.
A spinning 67 car brings out the caution and sets up the first green white checkered of the season. Olson gets the lucky dog and is back in the mix. The lapped cars are pulled and it’s anybody’s race. The 19 brings the field to the green and the 18 of Graham is sideways at the flag stand, pushing on the 19. The two separate and the battle continues, the 27 holding off the 92 of Jewel and the 71 of Olson pressuring. Coming to the checkered, the 27 is inside the 18 for second, but the 18 has the run and takes second. Berriau third, a strong run by Logan Jewel in the 92 keeps him in the points mix. Olson a good 5th , 6th 36 Joe Cornett-Ching, 7th Bobby Mear, 8th Jeff Cameron, 9th Scott Morgan, 10th Russ Janson, 11th John Ross, 12th Les Hein, 13th Kyle Day, 14th Tom Berrow, 15th Dave Haworth, 16th Trevor Adelman, 17th Bruce Bently 18th Sheldon Mayert, 19th Paul Turond, 20th Matt Stephenson, 21 Aaron Willison
Thanks to ASA Photographer April Sedlock for the great photographs