Sodeman Masters Mercer Dirt


MERCER, Pa. – Jack Sodeman Jr. powered his 410 sprint-car to the win in the Race for the Cure, presented at Mercer Raceway Park by the American Cancer Society. The North Jackson, Ohio, driver dedicated the win to his mother, who was recently diagnosed with breast cancer.

Kyle Fink worked the cushion like a master as he roared to his second straight win in the Approved Toilet Rentals 358 Modifieds.

Shane Smith won his first career feature in the Mini Stocks, sponsored by Eperthener’s Auto Wrecking and Ray’s Racing Collectibles. C.J. Jones won a thriller over Michael Bauer in the Bonnell’s Collision Center Outlaw Sprint Warriors.

Dillon Kinneston was the apparent winner of the Precise Racing Products Stock Cars, but he was 13 pounds too light. Consequently, the win was awarded to Brandon Johnston, his career first.

Cody Bova raced to the win in the Modified Lites, running under the banners of Big Daddy’s Speed Center and Rock Concrete. Kelvin Cohan copped the exhibition race for the 3/4 Late Models.

Sodeman lost the lead in traffic, but, ultimately, it was the lapped cars that put him into position to win the event.

“We got tied up a little bit there in lapped traffic, and Andy (McKisson) was running a great race and he got underneath me there.” Sodeman continued, “I thought that it was going to be a pretty good shootout between the top three, and then, unfortunately, they (McKisson and Carl Bowser) just got tagged up there.”

Andy McKisson, who was making just his second start of the season, looked strong in the early goiong in the feature event, presented by Luxaire Heating & Cooling, New WIlmington Motors and Ralph Butch, Inc. McKisson was the first car to reach lapped traffic, which would eventually play a major role in the outcome of the race.

However, when he first encountered the slower cars, he was being chased by Gale Ruth, Jr. and Carl Bowser. Jack Sodeman, Jr. and Brandon Spithaler were some distance back, engaged in their own private contest.

Ruth used the slower cars to take the lead away from McKisson on lap six, but he former leader stormed back to regain the lead on the next circuit. They diced their way through more traffic, thrilling fans with their exploits.

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Adam Fenwick
Adam Fenwick is the Associate Editor of and SPEED SPORT Magazine. Both a writer and photographer, you can find him at race tracks across the Southeast covering anything from asphalt late models to dirt sprint cars.