Bob Vantreight began his racing career at Victoria’s “Langford Speedway” in the late 1930’s. Bob’s brother, Jerry “the Jeep”, was a driver in the “Big Car” (Sprintcar) class and his cousin, Geoff, was a regular spectator. Moving to “Shearing Speedway” in 1952, Bob became the mechanic on the #88 Stockcar driven by Dick Varley for the 1953 season. They won “Best Looking Crew” for the year with Dick finishing 6th in points and also being awarded “Most Promising Driver”. Local racing also began at Western Speedway in 1954 where during the 1955 season, Bob crewed on the #23 Stockcar driven by Mel Preston.
Bob worked with Jim Haslam prior to and in the early months of the 1960 season building a 1933 Chev coupe with an inline “GMC” 6 cylinder engine which Billy Foster drove in the Stockcar class. The combination of this car and a ’34 Ford coupe that they started the season with resulted in Billy placing 5th in season-end points. Running the same Chevy coupe in 1961, this time with a V8 engine built by Bob, Billy finished the season in 3rd place in points and in addition captured a 3rd in Edmonton’s “Gold Cup” race. Bob also served as “VITRA” (Vancouver Island Track Racing Association) Treasurer this year.
A new “Modified Sportsman” class was formed for the 1962 season with Bob fabricating one for Dick Varley to drive which was powered by an inline “GMC” engine. They had the only 6 cylinder car in the new division and finished a respectable 6th in the points standings. Bob built a new “B” class Modified for Gordy Alberg for the 1964 season and took on the position of “Tech Man” for VITRA, a position which he also held the following season.
In 1970, Bob’s car, a Super Modified roadster, was driven by former Stockcar driver Barry Davies with Bob’s son Gerry assisting him on the crew. Bob then teamed up with fellow car owner Barry Bunyan and veteran driver Ray Pottinger and they ran the “Island Pacific Oil” sponsored super modified on the CAMRA circuit.
Starting in 1977, son Gerry took over the driver’s seat of Bob’s car and the two raced together in both W.R.A. (Washington Racing Association) and CAMRA for the next several years with Gerry scoring both wins and good finishes including winning the “Strawberry Cup” in 1979.
Bob passed in 1990.