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Racing Around: Modified feature at the Ridge was battle

April 19, 2012
By JAMES A. ELLIS ( , The Leader Herald

If you're a race fan and weren't pumped up by the modified feature at The Ridge last Friday night, then there is something definitely wrong.

Matt Sheppard, Stewart Friesen and Bobby Varin staged a three-car battle on the front end that at one point in the 35-lap main had all three leading at some point on a lap.

Sheppard picked up the victory, the third of his career at The Ridge, and when he climbed out of his modified in Victory Lane proclaimed, "you're not supposed to have to work that hard. I'll tell you what, every time I come here it is a battle," when he climbed out of his modified in Victory Lane.

While the battle for the lead in the second half of the feature will be what the majority of the fans will remember, there were battles front to back.

Marc Johnson, who held off Sheppard and Varin in the early stages of the race, wound up in a battle with Jackie Brown, Craig Hanson and Dustin Delaney for the fourth spot.

The supporting classes also provided plenty of racing action as Chad Edwards put his freshly lettered No. 37 sportsman in Victory Lane for the second time in his career. Brian Pessolano gave Edwards everything he could handle, but Edwards was helped out by Rocky Warner in third as he pressured Pessolano for the runner-up spot.

I realize it is still early in the season and some cars and drivers may not be ready, but I do have to ask, where are all the street stocks?

The division used to outdraw all the other divisions at both The Ridge and Fonda Speedway, but Friday night saw only seven take the green for the feature at The Ridge and 11 hit the track Saturday at Fonda.


Danny Varin will be looking for his second straight victory of the season when the CRSA 305 sprinters take to the track Saturday at Fonda Speedway.

The second-generation driver won the series' season-opener at Black Rock Speedway on March 31 and won his first career sprint car A-main last season at the Track of Champions.

The 305 sprinters will replace the 4-cylinder division on this week's race card at Fonda.

Season opener

After hosting a well-attended practice session last Sunday, the dirt surface at Albany-Saratoga Speedway roars back to life tonight with the first of a two-night season opening event.

The track kicks off the "Resurrection of the Dirt" season tonight with modifieds, budget sportsmen and four cylinders making up the race card.

The modifieds will run for $2,500-to-win when they return Friday night with the pro stocks and street stocks.

Racing starts at 7 p.m. both nights.

AKA to host opener

The Saratoga County?Fairgrounds will host the Adirondack?Karting Association points opener Saturday.

The fairgrounds are located at 162 Prospect St. in Ballston Spa. The public is invited to attend and there will be no charge.

Warm-ups start at 10 a.m.

For more information, visit the Adirondack Karting Association website,



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