Motorsports Recap And Behind The Scenes Access

Schatz books another WoO win at Charlotte

By Lee Elder
CONCORD, N.C. (May 25, 2018) – Sprint car racer Donny Schatz has been so dominant in World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car racing this season that it is a surprise when he does not win. There were no surprises Friday at The Dirt Track at Charlotte Motor Speedway as Schatz won the Outlaws Showdown.

The race was the first in a while for the Outlaws, who were the victims of a series of rainouts in the Midwest.

Schatz had to pass Shane Stewart to get the lead with six laps to go but once the nine-time champ got ahead, he pulled away. The win was the ninth of the season for Schatz and the 11th of his career at the Charlotte track.

“Once we started moving around on the race track my car just got better and better and better,” Schatz said.

Stewart finished second, more than a second behind the winner. Logan Schuchart, who won the same event a year ago, was third this time. Brad Sweet was fourth and Sheldon Haudenschild took fifth despite tagging the wall in turns one and two with ten laps left in the 30-lap event.

“Shane hasn’t won a race yet this year, so I knew he was digging and trying to do everything he could,” said Schatz. “We were just in a good spot. We were able to move around and get past him.”

Stewart started the race on the pole and took the lead on the first lap, leading the first 23 circuits around the 4/10-mile clay oval. Stewart led by more than half a second with 10 laps remaining but was side-by-side with Schatz as they crossed the line with seven laps left. Schatz got the lead in the first turn. From there it was library time: Schatz checked out.

Stewart questioned himself after the race, mulling the possibility that he might have held Schatz off longer by racing on the inside groove in the final laps.

“Obviously Donny’s really tough when it comes to tracks like this,” Stewart said. “It’s hard to know what to do when you’re out front. I’ve been doing this a long time and when you lose races like that you kind of kick yourself in the butt. I felt like, if I would have moved down, it might have made it a little bit tougher for him to get around me.”

Schuchart said the engine in his racer stuttered on restarts. He grabbed third place on the final lap of the race.

NOTES: 26 cars made qualifying runs … NASCAR stars Kasey Kahne and Ricky Stenhouse Jr both raced with the Outlaws … Logan Schuchart, Donny Schatz and Ian Madsen won the heat races, Schatz won the Dash and Stenhouse won the Last Chance race … Schatz races for Tony Stewart. The Schatz team was short two crewmen, so two mechanics from Stewart’s NASCAR team worked with Schatz’ dirt track team Friday.

Results from The Dirt Track at Charlotte – May 25, 2018: Feature (30 Laps) (Driver, position, winnings): 1. 15-Donny Schatz [1][$12,000]; 2. 2-Shane Stewart [2][$5,700]; 3. 1S-Logan Schuchart [4][$3,500]; 4. 49-Brad Sweet [3][$3,000]; 5. 17-Sheldon Haudenschild [8][$2,600]; 6. 18-Ian Madsen [5][$2,400]; 7. 9-Daryn Pittman [7][$2,300]; 8. 41-Jason Johnson [10][$2,200]; 9. 5-David Gravel [9][$2,150]; 10. O7-Gerard McIntyre [6][$2,100]; 11. 4-Kasey Kahne [13][$1,600]; 12. 19-Brent Marks [20][$1,350]; 13. 11K-Kraig Kinser [12][$1,300]; 14. W20-Greg Wilson [11][$1,200]; 15. 22-Cole Duncan [18][$1,100]; 16. 17BC-Ricky Stenhouse [19][$1,000]; 17. 44-Trey Starks [22][$900]; 18. 5B-Logan Seavey [21][$850]; 19. 7S-Jason Sides [14][$800]; 20. 13-Clyde Knipp [15][$800]; 21. 4B-Steve Butler [23][$800]; 22. 1A-Jacob Allen [16][$800]; 23. 20-Nick Drake [17][$800]; 24. 4S-Danny Smith [24][$800] Lap Leaders: Shane Stewart 1-23, Donny Schatz 24-30; KSE Hard Charger Award: 19-Brent Marks[+8]

Qualifying (Car number, driver, time): 1. 1S-Logan Schuchart, 13.332; 2. 15-Donny Schatz, 13.426; 3. 18-Ian Madsen, 13.429; 4. O7-Gerard McIntyre, 13.52; 5. W20-Greg Wilson, 13.537; 6. 44-Trey Starks, 13.543; 7. 1A-Jacob Allen, 13.557; 8. 7S-Jason Sides, 13.582; 9. 49-Brad Sweet, 13.595; 10. 41-Jason Johnson, 13.608; 11. 2-Shane Stewart, 13.629; 12. 11K-Kraig Kinser, 13.66; 13. 17BC-Ricky Stenhouse, 13.681; 14. 17-Sheldon Haudenschild, 13.704; 15. 13-Clyde Knipp, 13.745; 16. 9-Daryn Pittman, 13.774; 17. 20-Nick Drake, 13.775; 18. 5-David Gravel, 13.807; 19. 19-Brent Marks, 13.831; 20. 5B-Logan Seavey, 13.899; 21. 22-Cole Duncan, 13.932; 22. 4-Kasey Kahne, 13.967; 23. 4B-Steve Butler, 14.11; 24. 4S-Danny Smith, 14.167; 25. 5A-Justin Barger, 14.236; 26. 1X-Scott Hunter, 14.495




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