Rocketing to the Top: Ryan Godown Opens ‘Cajun Swing’ with Boothill Victory

Written by Chris Moore

GREENWOOD, LA – Rocketing to the top.

The ‘Ringoes Rocket’ Ryan Godown claimed the opening night of the Bob Hilbert Sportswear Short Track Super Series (STSS) Fueled By Sunoco Modified ‘Cajun Swing’ at Boothill Speedway in Louisiana.

Godown’s triumph, worth $4,000-plus, was his seventh career STSS victory and his first since October 2017 at Georgetown (Del.) Speedway.

Godown’s quest for the ‘Cajun Swing’ opener began from the ninth position, with Johnstown, N.Y.’s Rocky Warner and Saratoga Springs, N.Y.’s Jack Lehner on the front row of the 40-lap main event.

Lehner pounced off the outside of the front row and led in the early going.

It took the leaders just three laps to make their way into heavy lap traffic, as the ‘Ginga Ninja,’ Lehner was expertly navigating his way through the slower traffic with precision.

The first 10 laps clicked off caution-free, before the ‘Cajun Region’ champion, Robeline, La.’s Caleb Dillard slowed to a stop, bringing out the race’s first yellow.

With Dillard off, the field went back to racing and Lehner quickly worked back into slower traffic. This time, Lehner didn’t fare as well. 

A three-wide maneuver entering turn three ended Lehner’s quest for his first STSS win with a broken rear suspension.

Warner inherited the lead with Sprakers, N.Y.’s Stewart Friesen pulling up alongside, putting the Fonda (N.Y.) Speedway foes at the front of the field.

Godown’s charge to the front became apparent on a lap-16 restart, racing from sixth to fourth and stalking the top three as the field closed in on the halfway point.

On lap 21, Friesen turned up the pressure on Warner, diving to the inside of him down the back straightaway. The two would race side-by-side under Jimmy McCommas before Warner pushed up the track and made contact with McCommas. McCommas’s car bounced and then flipped, drawing the red flag. He was uninjured.

With the lap not completed, Friesen’s pass was negated and Warner once again controlled the restart.

Godown picked another one off, going around Savannah, N.Y.’s Matt Sheppard for third on the restart before another yellow flew on lap 24. On that restart, Sheppard’s night came to an end, as something in the rear sent the Hurlock Auto & Speed No. 9s around.

The lap-24 yellow was the final one, as Friesen’s pressure continued on Warner for the top spot. Friesen raced underneath Warner for the lead on lap 27, but the back end of the car came out from underneath the Halmar International No. 44, sending him sideways and into the infield.

Friesen rejoined the track and the field in the fourth position, but he surrendered the runner-up spot to Godown and the third spot to Ransomville, N.Y.’s Erick Rudolph.

Godown wasted no time chasing down Warner and using Friesen’s high-to-low move off turn two to get underneath Warner and drive by him for the race lead.

New Jersey’s Godown led the final nine laps to claim his seventh career STSS victory, and the opening night of the 2021 ‘Cajun Swing.’

Rudolph raced to a runner-up finish in his Revive Spine Center No. 25 and Friesen recovered to round out the podium.

Warner dropped to fourth a bent front axle in his Jason Simmons Racing No. 98 and Ballston Spa, N.Y.’s Derrick McGrew Jr. rounded out the top five in his family-owned No. 26.

Horseheads, N.Y.’s Tyler Siri raced to sixth in his Outlaw Speedway No. 5* and Vernon, N.Y.’s Willy Decker finished in seventh. Eighth was Waxahachie, Texas resident Kodey Keimig (earning the Behrent’s Performance Warehouse Top Louisiana-Texas driver bonus) with Benton, La.’s Keith Badiali coming home ninth and Pollock, La.’s Danny Baglio rounded out the top 10.

Thirty-two STSS Modifieds attempted to qualify for the ‘Cajun Swing’ opener at Boothill Speedway.

Heat winners, receiving $50 each courtesy of FloRacing in addition to a $50 ERK Steering gift certificate, were Godown, Decker, Sheppard and Lehner.

Racing resumes for the STSS on Wednesday, November 10 at Ark-La-Tex Speedway for Night No. 2 of the ‘Cajun Swing.’ The Modifieds (40 laps, $4,000 to win, $750 for 10th & $400 to start) are joined by the Pro Mods, Crate Late Models, Factory Stocks and Four Cylinders.

To learn more about the Short Track Super Series Fueled By Sunoco, visit, e-mail, check out ‘Short Track Super Series’ on Facebook or @ShortTrackSS on Twitter or Instagram.

The Short Track Super Series is presented by American Racer/Lias Tire, Sunoco Race Fuel, Insinger Performance, FloRacing, Bob Hilbert Sportswear, Hurlock Auto & Speed, Velocita-USA, Design for Vision/Sunglass Central, Behrent’s Performance Warehouse, Beyea Custom Headers, Bicknell Racing Products, Dirt Track Digest, Penske Racing Shocks, Danny’s Pizza Pizzazz, Algonkin Motel, Henry’s Exhaust, Hig Fab, Kirkey Racing Fabrication, Precision Hydraulic & Oil, Belmont’s Garage, Superior Remodeling, Spyder High Performance Filters, Fastline Performance, Teo-Pro Car, VAHLCO, WELD Racing & Wilwood.


Bob Hilbert Sportswear Short Track Super Series Fueled By Sunoco Cajun Swing Event No. 1 Modified Feature Finish (40 laps): RYAN GODOWN, Erick Rudolph, Stewart Friesen, Rocky Warner, Derrick McGrew Jr., Tyler Siri, Willy Decker, Kodey Keimig, Keith Badiali, Danny Baglio, Glenn Stone, Mike Krompegal, Eric Williams, Matt Sheppard, John Lutes, Korey Keimig, Thomas Holt, Mike Mahaney, Jimmy McCommas, Jon White Jr., Jack Lehner, Greg Dillard, Joe Boswell, David Forbis, Caleb Dillard, Darrell Fowlkes.

Did Not Qualify ($100 Tow Money): Corey Oltz, Brent Buckley, Richard Holt, Tommy Hall, Tommy Rascoe, Steve Davis.

Behrent’s Performance Warehouse Fourth-Place Bonus ($50 Gift Card):  Rocky Warner
Behrent’s Performance Warehouse Top LA/TX Driver ($50 Gift Card):  
Kodey Keimig (eighth)
Beyea Custom Headers Bonus ($50):
Mike Mahaney Redrew 12th)
Day Motor Sports Bonus (FREE Tire Certificate):
Danny Baglio(10th)
ERK Steering Repair Heat Winners ($50 Certificate):
Ryan Godown, Willy Decker, Matt Sheppard & Jack Lehner
FloRacing Heat Winners ($50): Ryan Godown, Willy Decker, Matt Sheppard & Jack Lehner
Henry’s Exhaust Power Position ($50 Certificate): Glenn Stone (11th)
Penske Racing Shocks Bonuses:
Ryan Godown ($150 – winner): Erick Rudolph ($75 – second); Stewart Friesen ($50 – third); Danny Baglio ($25 – 10th)
Shed Road Auto Parts Hard Charger ($50):
Glenn Stone (24th to 11th)
TL Hill Services Fastest Heat-Race Lap ($100):
Erick Rudolph (13.675 seconds)
TL Hill Services Halfway Leader ($50): Rocky Warner
Wilwood Brakes ‘Lucky 7’ Bonus ($75 Certificate):
Willy Decker (seventh)