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Schatz Claims Historic Win No. 125 with World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series

Donny Schatz. - Allan Holland Photo

Donny Schatz. – Allan Holland Photo

From Shawn Miller

Las Vegas, NV  – (March 6, 2013) – If the rest of the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series races this season are anything like Wednesday night, fans across the country are in for a treat.

Fighting extreme gusts of wind all night, defending series champion Donny Schatz outlasted future NASCAR star Kyle Larson to garner the opening night at The Dirt Track at Las Vegas. The win was Schatz’s series-leading seventh at the half mile and more significantly, it was his 125th career World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series feature victory.

“I think it’s more important to be win No. 1 on the season,” he said after becoming only the fourth driver to ever reach the 125-win milestone. “It’s always hardest to get the first win of the season out of the way.”

Schatz started on the pole of the dash after the No. 8 pill – the highest possible – was randomly selected for the third consecutive race to invert the first four rows. However, he was passed by Jason Sides in the closing laps of the dash, giving Sides the pole position for the 30-lap feature.

That didn’t last for long as Schatz rocketed around the high groove to take the lead exiting turn four on the opening lap. He maintained a several car length advantage as Brian Brown battled Sides for the runner-up position during the first eight laps before entering traffic.

As Schatz closed on the back of Logan Forler to put him one lap down, the first of seven cautions bunched the field back up. Schatz chose the inside line on the double-file restart – as every driver did on the restarts all night – and he continued to maintain the top spot as several cautions plagued the continuity of the event.

“When I got on the top I felt ok, but the wind just had mass havoc,” Schatz said. “One corner it turned you too much and the other corner it got you tight, so I could just never get it the way I wanted to.”

Sides, who was committed to the bottom as Schatz continually drove the top groove, pulled into the lead exiting turn two on Lap 14 only to see a caution for Paul McMahan relegate the running order to the previous lap. That gave the lead back to Schatz, who faced a new challenger several laps later.

Larson, who has picked up a World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series win in each of the past two seasons, used the bottom groove to slide under Schatz and Sides on a restart of Lap 18 for the top spot. Following a caution for a spin by Steve Kinser in turn one on the ensuing lap, Larson maintained the lead on the bottom line with Schatz within striking distance on the high groove.

But just as it looked like Larson had enough for the victory, his car stumbled in turn two on Lap 28. Schatz capitalized and regained the lead at the flag stand amidst traffic.

“I was making a ton of mistakes in the beginning of the race and halfway through I got settled down,” Larson said. “I caught traffic and started running out of fuel. It was stumbling on the exits. I missed the bottom once and Donny got by me.”

The duo raced side by side for the next lap with Schatz again narrowly edging Larson as they were shown the white flag with traffic racing wheel to wheel directly in front of them.

“Going down the last lap there was a hole there on the bottom and I went there because I knew those guys would be better there,” Schatz said. “I just couldn’t take the top anymore. I wore everything out.”

Schatz had an advantage exiting turn two, but Larson stayed within a car length as both dove to the bottom in turn three – inches apart.

“I knew it was going to stumble off (turn) two and I was just going to try to beat him into (turn) three, but it stumbled a little too bad and I could only just get to his inside,” Larson said. “If I could have just not stumbled as bad Donny would have not been able to block me and he would have had to take the long way around the corner and I might have been able to beat him to the line.”

Schatz got a little more traction as the drivers slid through turn four and it propelled him to the historic victory. Sides, who was only a couple of car lengths behind the battle for the lead in the closing laps, powered to the top groove in turns three and four on the final lap. His momentum allowed him to drive by Larson for the runner-up spot in the final 100 feet.

“When they both went to the bottom behind a lapped car I just ran it in as hard as I could and just tried to run the top, the middle, anywhere that would stick,” Sides said. “(The track) was kind of rough and had some holes in it, but it made for an exciting race I think. The top and the bottom, we were just racing all over. I thought it was pretty good racing myself.”

Tim Kaeding, the 2012 World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series winner at The Dirt Track at Las Vegas, finished fourth with Kerry Madsen charging from 25 th to fifth to earn the KSE Hard Charger Award.

Brown was sixth, Joey Saldana seventh, 19th starter Jason Meyers eighth, Cody Darrah ninth and fast qualifier Lucas Wolfe rounded out the top 10.

Thursday night at The Dirt Track at Las Vegas wraps up the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series season in Nevada. The grandstands are scheduled to open at 5 p.m. with Opening Ceremonies at approximately 6:55 p.m.

The Dirt Track at Las Vegas Notebook

NOTES – Lucas Wolfe established quick time in qualifying for the first race this season. … Paul McMahan extended his streak of qualifying in the top two to each of the four events this season. … Sammy Swindell claimed his first heat race win, Donny Schatz his second, Brian Brown his first and Tim Kaeding his first of the year. … The dash draw was an eight for the third straight race. … Jason Sides earned his first dash win. … McMahan won his first Last Chance Showdown. … There has been a different feature winner in each of the four events this season.

CONTINGENCY WINNERS – Penske Shocks ($100 certificate): David Gravel; MSD Ignitions ($50 cash): Donny Schatz; Comp Cams ($50 certificate): Donny Schatz; STP ($50 cash): Jason Sides; Bruce High Performance Transporters ($50 cash and $200 certificate): Kerry Madsen; JE Pistons ($50 cash): Kerry Madsen; UNOH ($50 cash): Joey Saldana; American Racing Custom Wheels ($50 cash): Joey Saldana; VP Racing Fuels ($50 cash): Cody Darrah; Edelbrock ($50 cash): Chad Kemenah; Comp Cams ($50 cash): Chad Kemenah; Cometic Gasket ($50 cash): Chad Kemenah; Bruce High Performance Transporters ($200 certificate): David Gravel; Superflow ($50 cash): Craig Dollansky; JE Pistons (set of rings): Terry McCarl; Klotz Synthetic Lubricants ($50 cash): Steve Kinser; Bruce High Performance Transporters ($200 certificate): Terry McCarl; MSD Ignitions ($25 cash): Paul McMahan; Armor All (case of product): Brady Bacon; KSE Racing Products ($100 certificate): Kerry Madsen.

WINNERS – Danny Lasoski – 1 (Volusia Speedway Park on Feb. 17); Terry McCarl – 1 (Volusia Speedway Park on Feb. 16); Daryn Pittman – 1 (Volusia Speedway Park on Feb. 15) and Donny Schatz – 1 (The Dirt Track at Las Vegas on March 6).

TIME TRIALS – Lucas Wolfe was the fastest qualifier around the half-mile oval with a time of 14.593 seconds to earn five championship points. Also earning points were Paul McMahan (4 points), Joey Saldana (3), Chad Kemenah (2) and Cody Darrah (1).

WE’RE ONLINE – Make sure to check out WoOsprint.com for the latest news and results, plus exclusive driver interviews, video and pictures. Also listen to every event live at DIRTVision.com .

The Dirt Track at Las Vegas Statistical Report; Las Vegas, Nev.; March 6, 2013

A-Main – (30 Laps) – 1. 15-Donny Schatz [2] [$10,000]; 2. 7S-Jason Sides [1] [$5,000]; 3. OL-Kyle Larson [3] [$3,000]; 4. 83-Tim Kaeding [10] [$2,700]; 5. 29-Kerry Madsen [25] [$1,800]; 6. 21-Brian Brown [4] [$2,200]; 7. 71M-Joey Saldana [7] [$2,000]; 8. 21M-Jason Meyers [19] [$1,800]; 9. 4-Cody Darrah [13] [$1,600]; 10. 82-Lucas Wolfe [8] [$1,450]; 11. 14X-Brady Bacon [23] [$1,300]; 12. 63-Chad Kemenah [12] [$1,200]; 13. 6-David Gravel [17] [$1,100]; 14. 1-Sammy Swindell [9] [$1,000]; 15. 7-Craig Dollansky [18] [$950]; 16. 9-Daryn Pittman [14] [$900]; 17. 11-Steve Kinser [20] [$850]; 18. 11K-Kraig Kinser [15] [$750]; 19. 83JR-Kyle Hirst [24] [$725]; 20. 2L-Logan Forler [21] [$700]; 21. 24A-Rico Abreu [5] [$700]; 22. 14-Tony Stewart [16] [$700]; 23. 77X-Wayne Johnson [6] [$700]; 24. 51-Paul McMahan [11] [$700]; 25. 24-Terry McCarl [22] [$700]. Lap Leaders: Donny Schatz 1-17, 28-30; Kyle Larson 18-27. KSE Hard Charger Award: 29-Kerry Madsen [+20].

Qualifying – 1. 82-Lucas Wolfe, 14.593; 2. 51-Paul McMahan, 14.854; 3. 71M-Joey Saldana, 14.880; 4. 63-Chad Kemenah, 14.895; 5. 4-Cody Darrah, 14.924; 6. 9-Daryn Pittman, 14.936; 7. 11K-Kraig Kinser, 14.973; 8. 14-Tony Stewart, 15.027; 9. 1-Sammy Swindell, 15.066; 10. OL-Kyle Larson, 15.073; 11. 21-Brian Brown, 15.085; 12. 7S-Jason Sides, 15.090; 13. 24A-Rico Abreu, 15.128; 14. 15-Donny Schatz, 15.141; 15. 77X-Wayne Johnson, 15.195; 16. 83-Tim Kaeding, 15.198; 17. 6-David Gravel, 15.279; 18. 7-Craig Dollansky, 15.299; 19. 21M-Jason Meyers, 15.304; 20. 11-Steve Kinser, 15.309; 21. O-Glenn Styres, 15.342; 22. 26-Sam Hafertepe Jr, 15.345; 23. 2L-Logan Forler, 15.350; 24. 13-Mark Dobmeier, 15.353; 25. 24-Terry McCarl, 15.382; 26. 14X-Brady Bacon, 15.389; 27. 33-Danny Lasoski, 15.424; 28. 83JR-Kyle Hirst, 15.459; 29. 41-Jason Johnson, 15.514; 30. 7K-Jason Solwold, 15.532; 31. 88N-D.J. Netto, 15.571; 32. 27-Mitch Olson, 15.612; 33. 29-Kerry Madsen, 15.632; 34. 11C-Roger Crockett, 15.705; 35. 44W-Austen Wheatley, 15.731; 36. W20-Greg Wilson, 15.731; 37. 21X-Carson Macedo, 15.740; 38. 45X-Johnny Herrera, 15.855; 39. 33V-Henry VanDam, 15.878; 40. 92-Mitch Mack, 16.035; 41. 97G-Jody Rosenboom, 16.144.

Heat 1 – (8 Laps – Top 5 finishers transfer to the A-feature) – 1. 1-Sammy Swindell [2]; 2. 24A-Rico Abreu [1]; 3. 4-Cody Darrah [3]; 4. 82-Lucas Wolfe [4]; 5. 24-Terry McCarl [7]; 6. 29-Kerry Madsen [9]; 7. 6-David Gravel [5]; 8. 41-Jason Johnson [8]; 9. 21X-Carson Macedo [10]; 10. 97G-Jody Rosenboom [11]; 11. O-Glenn Styres [6].

Heat 2 – (8 Laps – Top 5 finishers transfer to the A-feature) – 1. 15-Donny Schatz [1]; 2. OL-Kyle Larson [2]; 3. 9-Daryn Pittman [3]; 4. 14X-Brady Bacon [7]; 5. 7-Craig Dollansky [5]; 6. 51-Paul McMahan [4]; 7. 26-Sam Hafertepe Jr [6]; 8. 7K-Jason Solwold [8]; 9. 45X-Johnny Herrera [10]; 10. 11C-Roger Crockett [9].

Heat 3 – (8 Laps – Top 5 finishers transfer to the A-feature) – 1. 21-Brian Brown [2]; 2. 77X-Wayne Johnson [1]; 3. 11K-Kraig Kinser [3]; 4. 21M-Jason Meyers [5]; 5. 71M-Joey Saldana [4]; 6. 2L-Logan Forler [6]; 7. 33V-Henry Van Dam [10]; 8. 33-Danny Lasoski [7]; 9. 44W-Austen Wheatley [9]; 10. 88N-D.J. Netto [8].

Heat 4 – (8 Laps – Top 5 finishers transfer to the A-feature) – 1. 83-Tim Kaeding [1]; 2. 7S-Jason Sides [2]; 3. 14-Tony Stewart [3]; 4. 11-Steve Kinser [5]; 5. 63-Chad Kemenah [4]; 6. 27-Mitch Olson [8]; 7. 83JR-Kyle Hirst [7]; 8. W20-Greg Wilson [9]; 9. 92-Mitch Mack [10]; 10. 13-Mark Dobmeier [6].

Dash – (6 Laps, finishing order determined first 10 starting positions of A-feature ) – 1. 7S-Jason Sides [3]; 2. 15-Donny Schatz [1]; 3. OL-Kyle Larson [5]; 4. 21-Brian Brown [4]; 5. 24A-Rico Abreu [2]; 6. 77X-Wayne Johnson [9]; 7. 71M-Joey Saldana [7]; 8. 82-Lucas Wolfe [8]; 9. 1-Sammy Swindell [6]; 10. 83-Tim Kaeding [10].

B-Main – (12 Laps – Top 4 finishers transfer to the A-feature) – 1. 51-Paul McMahan [1] [-]; 2. 6-David Gravel [2] [-]; 3. 83JR-Kyle Hirst [8] [-]; 4. 2L-Logan Forler [5] [-]; 5. 26-Sam Hafertepe Jr [4] [$200]; 6. 29-Kerry Madsen [13] [$180]; 7. 44W-Austen Wheatley [15] [$175]; 8. 41-Jason Johnson [9] [$160]; 9. 27-Mitch Olson [12] [$150]; 10. 33V-Henry Van Dam [19] [$150]; 11. 7K-Jason Solwold [10] [$150]; 12. 21X-Carson Macedo [17] [$150]; 13. W20-Greg Wilson [16] [$150]; 14. 45X-Johnny Herrera [18] [$150]; 15. 88N-D.J. Netto [11] [$150]; 16. O-Glenn Styres [3] [$150]; 17. 11C-Roger Crockett [14] [$150]; 18. 33-Danny Lasoski [7] [$150]; 19. 97G-Jody Rosenboom [21] [$150]; 20. 13-Mark Dobmeier [6] [$150]; 21. 92-Mitch Mack [20] [$150].

World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series Top 20 Championship Standings

Pos. Driver

Total

Diff

Wins

Top 5

Top 10

QT

1 Daryn Pittman

562

0

1

3

3

0

2 Jason Sides

550

-12

0

1

4

0

3 Sammy Swindell

534

-28

0

1

2

0

4 Donny Schatz

532

-30

1

2

3

0

5 Paul McMahan

524

-38

0

1

2

2

6 Kraig Kinser

522

-40

0

1

2

0

7 Kerry Madsen

516

-46

0

1

2

0

8 Chad Kemenah

513

-49

0

1

1

0

9 Craig Dollansky

505

-57

0

0

2

1

10 Joey Saldana

503

-59

0

0

1

0

11 Cody Darrah

501

-61

0

0

2

0

12 David Gravel

480

-82

0

0

1

0

13 Steve Kinser

476

-86

0

0

1

0

14 Terry McCarl

474

-88

1

1

1

0

15 Greg Wilson

409

-153

0

0

0

0

16 Danny Lasoski

402

-160

1

1

1

0

17 Sam Hafertepe Jr.

398

-164

0

0

0

0

18 Brad Sweet

394

-168

0

2

2

0

19 Jac Haudenschild

382

-180

0

1

2

0

20 Justin Henderson

374

-188

0

1

1

0