It was a full slate of racing at local tracks
By Pam Baker
CLARION NEWS Racing correspondent
As I write this column it is 82 degrees and makes you feel happy and ready for summer. Summer it the time for lots of racing action and this past weekend, despite cold temperatures all the local tracks were able to get their openers in, so here we go.
At Lernerville Speedway on Friday night in 410 Sprint action, Jack Sodeman, Jr. led the field in the opening laps of the event, but fifth place starter, Sye Lynch was chasing Sodeman down as the laps clicked away. On lap 13 Lynch got the lead from Sodeman and then had to fight off the challenges of lapped traffic and AJ Flick to hold on for the win. Flick ended up second ahead of Sodeman, Michael Bauer of Clarion, and Darin Gallagher.
Ken Schaltenbrand showed the fans why he is a worthy champion as he made his way to the front of the Late Model field and passed both Alex Ferree and Colton Flinner to pick up the checkered flags. Finishing second was Flinner followed by Jared Miley, Ferre and John Lee.
Steve Slater brought the Big Block Modifieds to the green and led the way for a couple laps before Garrett Krummert got by and stretched out his lead to nearly a straightaway ahead of the field. On lap 22, Jeremiah Shingledecker used the smooth track surface to his advantage and wrestled the lead away from Krummert and went on to win his first of the season. Finishing second was Krummert followed by Dave Murdick, John Mollick and Chris Rudolph.
The final race of the night found the Pro Stocks following Joey Zambotti to the green flag. Zambotti shot out to the early lead, but Daryl Charlier was able to get the lead on lap nine and went the rest of the distance to pick up the win.
Coming up this Friday night, the All Star Sprint Cars will be making an appearance along with the Allegheny Sprint 305's and the RUSH Wingless Sprint Cars. Racing starts at 7:30 p.m.
On Saturday night, the gates opened for the first time this season at Sharon Speedway. The ULMS Late Models were on hand and Michael Norris started on the pole for the race. On lap 2 Jared Miley took the lead away, but Norris worked the entire event to get back by Miley and with two laps to go was able to make the winning pass and held on to get the checkers. Finishing second was Jared Miley just ahead of Max Blair for third. Fourth went to Chub Frank with Matt Lux fifth.
Dave Hess who was doing double duty in both the Late Model and EMod division, got into his EMod and on the second lap of the feature took the lead and never looked back to get the win. Finishing second was Ty Rhoades followed by Brent Rhebergen, Joel Watson and Troy Johnson.
Curt J. Bish held off the competition to pick up the Pro Stock feature after leading all twenty laps. Finishing second was Chris McGuire followed by Rob Shook, Curt Bish, Jr., and Chase Lambert.
The final race of the evening featured the Econo Mods and Dennis Lunger, Jr. after fading back to sixth at the start, made his way back to the lead on lap three and went on to pick up feature win. Finishing second was Jeremy Double followed by Garrett Calvert in third. Fourth went to Nate Young followed by Jarrett Young in fifth.
Coming up Saturday night at Sharon Speedway, the All Star Sprints will be on hand along with the RUSH Sportsman Modifieds. Racing starts at 6 p.m.
Also on Saturday at Mercer Raceway Park the 410 Sprints were on hand and Adam Kekich was in the right place at the right time. Leader, Jack Sodeman, Jr. got tangled with Jeremy Kornbau knocking out both cars, giving Kekich the lead. He went on to get the win ahead of Brandon Spithaler, Greg Wilson, Bob Felmlee and Knox's Kyle Colwell.
In the 305 Sprint Car feature Logan McCandless made it two in a row after bad luck struck Jake Gomola. Gomola was dominating the feature, but his motor expired going into turn one and McCandless inherited the lead and the win. Finishing second was Justin Clark followed by Jim Morris, Steve Cousins and Jarrett Rosencrance.
Eric Gabany led wire to wire in the 15 FASTRAK Modified feature collecting his 15th career win at Mercer. Finishing second was Preston Cope followed by Brian Schaffer, Caden Petry and Billy Adams.
The final feature of the night found the Mini Stocks on track and second generation driver Jacob Wheeler collected his first ever feature win. Carl Ealy led early but Wheeler was able to take the lead away and went on to get the checkers. Finishing second was Ealy followed by Tim Callahand, Leonard Baker, Jr., and Adam Aley.
Mercer Raceway Park will be dark this weekend to honor the All Star Sprint race at Sharon Speedway.
On Sunday night at Tri City Raceway Park, AJ Flick made his first appearance of the season and after starting on the pole, surviving a red flag period, found himself sitting in victory lane. The red flag flew at the halfway mark after Brandon Spithaler connected with the water barrels in turn tow. Water leaking from the barrels brought out the red to clean up the spill. Flick had command of the race from start to finish to pick up the checkers. Finishing second was George Hobaugh followed by Jack Sodeman, Jr., Greg Wilson and Dan Shetler.
Local driver, Kevin Hoffman picked up his first win in many years in the 358 Modified division. Hoffman, who started on the pole, jumped out to an early lead and kept the field behind him the entire distance. Finishing second Kyle Inman followed by Jeremiah Shingledecker in third. Fourth went to Kyle Fink followed by Nick Joy.
In Pro Stock action, 16-year old, Tyler Wyant scored his first career win at Tri City. Wyant held off Curtis J. Bish to pick up the win. Finishing behind the duo was Doug Iorio, II, William Hurrelbring and Darr Diegelman.
The Mini Stocks were able to finish their rained out event from the week before and Just Bailey found himself in victory lane over Dalton Speer, D.J. Mcrace, Pat Hanlon, Jr. and Evan Sobieski. The regular Mini Stock feature saw Dalton Speer capture the checkered flags ahead of Pat Hanlon, Jr. Finishing third was Just Bailey followed by George Kiehl and D.J. Mcrae.
Coming up Sunday night the All Star Sprint Cars will make their way from Sharon to Tri City for their third show in a row this weekend. Also running with the All Star Sprints will be the RUSH Wingless Sprints. There will be no racing at Tri City over Mother's Day weekend, but they will return for a regular show and it will also be Military Night. Racing starts at 6 p.m.
If you happen to follow the BRP Big Block Modified Tour, they will be in West Virginia for two days of ground pounding action. On Friday night, they will be at Ohio Valley Speedway and then venture up the road on Saturday to Tyler County Speedway. Have a great week everyone.