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– LAKE STEVENS, Wash. (Aug. 28) – Austen Wheatley is probably looking forward to this weekend more than any other this season.

That’s because Wheatley is welcoming the World of Outlaws to his home track of Skagit Speedway in Alger, Wash., on Friday and Saturday. And he wants to give them a special greeting.

“I feel like we can get a top five,” the Lake Stevens, Wash., resident said. “That’s my goal at least.”

The 18-year-old is coming off his best career finish with the World of Outlaws – 13th at Black Hills Speedway in Rapid City, S.D., last Tuesday. And the weekend before that he had a top 10 until being caught up in someone else’s crash with two laps remaining at Huset’s Speedway in Brandon, S.D.

Overall, he has a top 20 in each of his last three World of Outlaws events and this weekend he heads to the 3/10-mile, semi-banked track he’s familiar with.

“I do really well on tracks I’m familiar with,” Wheatley said. “I feel really comfortable at Skagit.

“The shape, the speed and the way you have to drive it suits my style. That track is about momentum. You’ve got to be smooth. You’ve got to be aggressive. But you have to know where you’re going.”

Wheatley has only raced four times at Skagit Speedway this year, including a top 10 early in the season and a 15th-place finish in the prestigious Jim Raper Memorial Dirt Cup on June 18. Since then he’s been on the road and spent much of the summer racing in the Midwest and East with the World of Outlaws and the All Star Circuit of Champions.

“When you’re racing the World of Outlaws, you don’t have to worry about anyone wrecking in front of you for no reason,” he said. “You know they are completely focused and that allows you to focus more and not worry about anyone else.”

And although competing against the best in the sport at tracks he’s unfamiliar with was often a confidence crusher, his good finishes were more than enough of a boost.

“It’s an up-and-down road,” Wheatley said. “I lost a lot of it and at times you gain it back. You’ll have those nights where you won’t even make the show. Or you’ll go to a show at Huset’s that has World of Outlaws caliber people and you’ll run in the top 10. It’s those nights that pick the confidence up.”

Coming off two learning months on the road and three top finishes with the World of Outlaws, Wheatley is exactly where he wants to be – confident and at a familiar track.


39 races, 25 features, 0 wins, 1 top five, 6 top 10s, 13 top 15s, 19 top 20s


Friday and Saturday at Skagit Speedway in Alger, Wash., with the World of Outlaws


15: Wheatley’s result the last time he was at Skagit Speedway in Alger, Wash., which was June 18 for the Jim Raper Memorial Dirt Cup.


Website: www.austenwheatley.com

Twitter: http://twitter.com/MiniWheats44w


Click on the link below for video of Wheatley’s bad crash on his qualifying night at the Knoxville Nationals on the Dirt Report on Speed TV:


Here is another link to the wreck from the Knoxville Raceway network and High Vista Video Productions:


Wheatley has gray and white t-shirts, gray sweatshirts, and charcoal gray hats and beanies for sale. For more information, visit www.austenwheatley.com.

SPONSOR SPOTLIGHT – Brown & Miller Racing Solutions

Based in Concord, N.C., Brown & Miller Racing Solutions distributes professional racing hoses and fittings. For more information, visit www.brms.net.

“We bought a hose machine and we do all our hoses,” Wheatley said. “BMRS just ships us what we need, so it’s really easy and convenient.”

Wheatley would like to thank his sponsors, including Wolfweld, The Oil Medics, SpeedMart, Fire-Down Graphics, Advanced Racing Suspensions, Astro Titanium, DMI, Goodyear and Redlined Welding & Construction for their continued support.