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Huntington native Jessica Sroufe to race in Gas City

RACE: Huntington native Jessica Sroufe will race at the Gas City I-69 Speedway on Friday night.

by Eric Andrews - eandrews@h-ponline.com

Huntington native Jessica Sroufe will return to the racetrack for Beach Night Bash on Friday at the Gas City I-69 Speedway in Gas City, Indiana.

Sroufe, who turns 27 on Aug. 28, is no stranger to the racetrack, as she is a third-generation racer. Her father, Terry, has raced for 43 years after growing up watching his father race. Terry, who also races at the Speedway from time to time, serves as Jessica’s chief mechanic.

“I have been around racing my whole life,” Sroufe said. “I’m a third-generation racer. My dad started racing late models when he was 17 and he just turned 60 this year. He grew up watching his dad race. And, my parents met at Warsaw Speedway, so racing has always been a part of our family. When I was younger, I used to ask for a race car for Christmas. I had competed in a powder puff when I was 12 and again when I was 13. When I was 14, my dad put a street stock together for me which I raced for a year. Then sportsman for two years, where I was able to get a few feature wins. Since then, I’ve been in a modified. I will be 27 this month, so I’ve been racing for 13 years. I wouldn’t choose to spend my Fridays or Saturdays anywhere else in the summer.”

Sroufe is also no stranger to the Gas City I-69 Speedway, as she currently sits in fourth place on the Speedway’s UMP Modified standings with 861 points in 2019. Sroufe sits just 13 points shy of the third-place position entering Friday’s race.

“Gas City is one of my favorite tracks,” Sroufe said. “It’s a lot of fun to race at. My dad used to race at Gas City when he used to race late models and now I get the opportunity to race at the same track.”

Also of note on the Speedway’s UMP Modified rankings is Bub Roberts of Warren, Indiana, who sits in sixth place with 754 points this year.

When not on the racetrack, the 2011 Huntington North graduate spends her time as a hairstylist and owner of Studio J Salon and Boutique in Huntington.

Friday’s race will be the 13th of the year for UMP Modifieds at the Speedway this year, with just five UMP Modified races left after Friday. Sroufe noted she expects the competition to be stiffer as the Speedway’s schedule progresses as other area tracks’ season schedules dwindle down.

“I’m hoping to be able to finish up front,” Sroufe said. “Last week we had a fast car, but had some unfortunate events. We have made so many improvements with this car since the beginning of the year, so I’m hoping for a top-five finish. … It is sometimes a challenge to get the car ready each week with owning my own salon in Huntington and with summer time being my dad’s busy time at work, but we always make it happen each week!”

The gates open for Friday’s Beach Night Bash at 5 p.m. Hot laps will begin at 6:30 p.m. and time trials will start at 6:45 p.m., while racing gets underway at 7:30 p.m. Adult general admission is $20, while a pit pass can be purchased for $30. Kids 12 and under receive free admission.