Morris hustles to IMCA Wild West Speedweek win at Southern Oregon

Troy Morris III raced all the way from the XIVth starting spot in winning the Wild West Speedweek main event for Friesen Performance IMCA Modifieds at Southern Oregon Speedway. (Photo by Shadows Of Light Photography)

By Ben Deatherage

WHITE CITY, Ore. (June 16, 2024) – The driver nicknamed TM3 was the Friesen Performance IMCA Modified winner on night two of Wild West Speedweek.

Bakersfield, Calif., ace Troy Morris III motored all the way from 14th in winning Sunday’s main event and $1,000 at Southern Oregon Speedway.

Already eligible to qualify for the Fast Shafts All-Star Invitational, his dominating victory came over Mark Wauge, Katelynn Robertson, Ian Whisler and Kevin Williamson.

The race was a thriller from the start, with Whisler and Wauge fighting up front and Robertson and Tim Balding slugging it out for third behind them.

Morris made the most of the top line following a lap restart to crack the top five. He made it around Balding on lap seven for fourth and dispatched Robertson on the ninth circuit for third.  

Wauge came under fire from Morris before a lap 10 caution erased Whisler’s big lead.  Morris kept his faith on the high side on the twelve times around the 3/8-mile clay oval to pick up the runner-up spot and challenge Whisler.

Morris swung his car into a diamonding maneuver in the first set of turns on lap 17 and was the new leader when he hit the wire.  

As Morris took off from the rest of the field, Whisler and Wauge renewed their fight, except this time it was for second, with Wauge getting the position with seven to go. Things got a little wild when Robertson tried to make a podium run as she made it around Whisler on the back straightway on lap 30.

Morris dominate the rest of the way while Wauge was an impressive second in his first outing of the season.

For the IMCA Sunoco Stock Cars, Texas traveler Richard Mills took control at the start and it took only six circuits before lapped traffic came into the mix.

Chester Kniss start reeling in the leader, who was bottled up in traffic on lap 11. Kniss tried to pass around halfway mark, but Mills kept him in check. Their battle was put on hold due to caution on lap 14; a pass for the lead by Kniss was negated due to another caution.

Another yellow came out with nine to go and led to the race’s final restart.

No one would have anything for Mills over those final circuits. He’d take his career-first tour win ahead of 

Travis Dutra, Kniss, Craig Nieman and B.J. Wild.

Jesse Williamson got to the front when things got underway in the Friesen Performance IMCA Northern SportMod main, while second was contested by Ethan Killingsworth and Buddy Kniss.

Kniss secured the position and began to reel in the leader while 13th starting Ryan Peery made it around Killingsworth to grab third away just five laps in.

Kniss and Williamson raced hard for first, allowing Peery to make it a three-car race for the top spot.

Peery made quick work of Kniss, then swung around the outside of Williamson and beat him to the wire to for the lead, just as lapped traffic was becoming a factor.

Williamson and Peery went after it like two chess grand masters, but Peery had an answer for every challenge Williamson presented.

Peery held on to win at the line by half a car length. Williamson was second, with Kniss following him in third. Sanders wound up fourth, while Matthew Hagio posted a fifth-place result.

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