Rick’s Racing Roundup: Sodeman Takes First Win of PA Sprint Car Season

Despite wet and cold weather over the weekend, one area track defied the odds.

(Photo: Jack Sodeman Jr. became the first sprint car winner in western Pennsylvania this season Sunday night. Photo by Rick Rarer)

Tri-City Raceway somehow managed to dodge the rain this past Sunday and open their 2021 season. Despite rain surrounding the race track most of the evening, a good crowd turned out to see the first race of the season at the Venango county oval.

Defending track champion Jack Sodeman Jr took advantage of his front-row starting spot as he and New York invader Matt Farnham set a torrid pace during the twenty-five-lap sprint car feature. The two showed they were the class of the field, and it took everything Sodeman had to keep Farnham from scoring his first 410 sprint car victory.

George Hobaugh, Brandon Matus, and Carl Bowser would round out the top five in the first sprint car feature in western Pennsylvania this season. Franklin’s Bob Felmlee would finish a very respectable seventh in his first start at Tri-City in over a decade as he begins his 2021 comeback.

In the 358 modified feature, it would be New York invader Chad Brachmann who would not be denied. Brachmann would pass the early leader and local favorite Jeremiah Shingledecker for the opening night honors. Shingledecker would hold on for second, followed by Jimmy Holden and Franklin’s Kevin Hoffman.

Josh Seippel scored the opening night win at Tri-City Sunday night. Photo by Rick Rarer.

Josh Seippel scored the opening night win at Tri-City Sunday night. Photo by Rick Rarer.

In the pro stock feature, Franklin’s Josh Seippel of Franklin held off fellow local racer Tyler Wyant for his first win of the season. Just two laps into the mini stock feature, the rain finally halted the action for the night.

Racing resumes this Sunday evening at Tri-City with another four-division program. The rest of the rained-out mini stock feature will also be competed.

Persistent rains and cold temps forced Lernerville Speedway to cancel their opener this past Friday evening. They will try to kick off the season again this Friday with another Fab 4 program on the docket. Sprint cars, big block modifieds, super late models, and pro stocks will take the first green flag of the season at 7:30 p.m. sharp.

After a successful practice over the weekend, Sharon Speedway will look to start their 2021 season with the ULMS Super Late Model Series this Saturday. The super late models will race for a 3,000 dollars winner’s check. They will be joined by the UMP modifieds, pro stocks, and econo mods. Racing is set to get underway at 7:00 p.m.

After several weeks off after their Chiller Thriller, Michael’s Mercer Raceway will return to action this Saturday. Headlining the card will be the 410 sprint cars racing for a 2,500 dollar top prize. They will be joined by the 305 RaceSaver sprints, Fastrak limited modifieds, and the mini stocks with racing at 7:00 p.m.

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