Inside Line Promotions
– COTTAGE GROVE, Ore. (July 6) – It was more than a tune-up for Trey Starks.
While last weekend’s races at Grays Harbor Raceway in Elma, Wash., and the Cottage Grove Speedway in Cottage Grove, Ore., served as a test before the ASCS National Tour’s visit later this month, it was more importantly a confidence boost for the 15-year-old from Puyallup, Wash.
“I like Cottage Grove a little more than Elma, but we seem to do better at Elma,” he said.
That sentiment played true on Saturday, when Starks recorded his first top-five finish since the end of May. That race was also at Grays Harbor Raceway, which hosts the ASCS National Tour on July 15-16 to wrap up the ASCS Northwest Region Speedweek.
“On Saturday, we actually didn’t have a stellar car and we didn’t have a stellar performance,” he said. “We just took what we had.”
Fighting a tight car all night, Starks overcame a difficult qualifying effort by charging from fifth to second in his heat race. That earned him the seventh starting position for the main event. However, Starks didn’t take long to show he wanted to move forward.
“I pulled a huge bonsai move and dove to the bottom on the first turn,” he said. “I was up to third, but had so much momentum that I jumped the cushion and a bunch of cars got by me.”
Starks powered his way back up to fifth on the ensuing lap before the racing turned into follow the leader. At one point he climbed to fourth, but ultimately settled for fifth – his first top five since a runner-up performance at the ASCS Northwest event on May 28.
“Our car just wouldn’t get off the corner,” he said. “We were tight entering and loose exiting the turns.”
The team then headed South on Sunday to Cottage Grove Speedway, which hosts the ASCS National Tour on July 22-23.
Starks capitalized on his momentum from the previous night by timing in seventh quickest. He finished fifth in the heat race and missed the automatic transfer to the feature by one spot. However, Starks claimed the B Main to earn a bid and his qualifying time back, which allowed him to start the feature in ninth.
Starks maintained his position between seventh and ninth most of the race before a three-way battle for seventh put him in a tough spot midway through the race.
“Johnny Herrera was on the top and Kyle Miller was on the bottom,” Starks said. “I think we were going for seventh place going into turn one and I just got up a little too high. I got into the wall and it spun me around. I bent the right front wheel a little bit.
“The car actually wasn’t too bad to start with after that, but as the track went away, it was awful.”
Starks limped his way to a 17th-place finish.
He will compete on Saturday at Southern Oregon Speedway in White City, Ore., before the ASCS Northwest Speedweek kicks off the following Monday with six races in six straight days.
For live updates of Starks and the Speedweek races, visit www.insidelinepromotions.com.
QUICK RESULTS –
July 2 – Grays Harbor Raceway in Elma, Wash. – Qualifying: 12; Heat race: 2 (5); Feature: 5 (7).
July 3 – Cottage Grove Speedway in Cottage Grove, Ore. – Qualifying: 7; Heat race: 5 (5); B Main: 1 (1); Feature: 17 (9).
SEASON STATS –
26 races, 24 features, 0 wins, 3 top fives, 9 top 10s, 13 top 15s, 22 top 20s
UP NEXT –
Saturday at Southern Oregon Speedway in White City, Ore.
FAVORITE NUMBER –
35: Days since Starks’ previous top-five finish before last Saturday at Grays Harbor Raceway in Elma, Wash.
SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS –
Starks has shirts, sweatshirts and beanies for sale. The colors are black and gray for the shirts and hooded sweatshirts. Shirts are $15, sweatshirts are $30 and black beanies are $15. All sizes range from small to XL. For ordering information, visit www.treystarksracing.com.
SPONSOR SPOTLIGHT – Northwest Powder Coating & Sandblasting
Based out of Seattle, Northwest Powder Coating & Sandblasting is a powder coating business. It is owned by crew member Dallas Melby’s father, Chris.
“Chris, Dallas and Northwest Powder Coating & Sandblasting does a great job of making my car look awesome,” Starks said. “From the frame to the wings and everything in between, Northwest Powder Coating & Sandblasting does a clean, professional job.”
Starks would like to thank his sponsors, including Starks Timber Processing, Blue Dot Fabrications, Masco Petroleum and SpeedMart for their continued support.