Newcomer takes top prize in stock class
The Cassville Rotary Club's ninth annual demolition derby attracted a crowd of over 1,800 spectators on Saturday night. The event was held at the Bill Hailey Rodeo Arena in Cassville.
"We had a good crowd," said Herb Primrose, Cassville Rotary Club member. "The event turned out good. We had a lot of cars, I think the final count was 23 cars. A lot of the drivers were from here in Cassville. It was a good event."
Newcomer Cody Stephens, of Cassville, took first place in the stock class heat, which attracted over a half dozen competitors this year. Stephens claimed victory over the event's reigning champion, Rusty Newman, of Cassville, who dominated the stock class heat in 2009 and 2010.
Rusty Newman earned second place in the stock class heat this year. The derby's only female driver, Heather Tuheu, claimed third place honors.
Bobby Arms, of Commerce, Okla., took first place in the compact heat for the second consecutive year. Cody Blunder earned second place, and Denzil Arms, also of Commerce, Okla., finished third.
The modified heat winners were: Bobby Arms, first place; Cody Elnick, second place; and Rusty Newman, third place.
The two-car team of Blunder and Denzel Akins took first place in the soccer contest, which challenged drivers to use their cars to move a three-foot soccer ball across the arena into a goal marked by orange cones.
"The drivers didn't get real into the soccer contest, because they didn't want to damage their cars before the real demolition events, which pays out the big money," said Primrose. "Those guys are very competitive in the demolition events, which makes the event very exciting and fun."
Over $3,500 in prize money was awarded to winners of the stock class, compact class, modified class and car soccer contest.
All Points Recycling and Rebel Recycling, both of Cassville, sponsored several cars in this year's demolition derby.
Rusty Newman and his younger brother, Ryan Newman, were sponsored by Freedom Bank and Gautney's Garage, both of Cassville, Ball and Prier Tire, of Golden, and Benny's Automotive Repair, of Washburn. Ryan, owner of Newman Small Engine Repair in Cassville, also sponsored vehicles entered by both Newman brothers.