After surging from fifteenth spot up to second to mark a 1-2 finish for Big Game Motorsports on opening night under the All Star Circuit of Champions banner, the team suffered some tough finishes after leading the most laps of any driver, 54 of a possible 90, during the three World of Outlaws events. Dollansky and the crew of DJ Lindsey, brother Troy, son Luke, and Tyler continued to battle through the adversity when action continued two weeks later as the team recorded their first top-ten and top-five finishes of the season at Pike County Speedway in Mississippi and then the following night at Royal Purple Raceway in Texas.
The team would stay in the hunt until the beginning of March at Silver Dollar Speedway when ‘The Crowd Pleaser’ powered the Karavan Trailers Maxim to victory lane at the prestigious Mini Gold Cup leading all 35 laps of the main event. Following other events in California and some rain-outs along the way the #7 team captured victory next in Oklahoma during the World of Outlaws inaugural event at the Salina Highbanks.
After enduring a few more rain-outs ‘The Crowd Pleaser’ started to heat up along with the approaching hot summer temperatures as he recorded six top-tens including three in the top-five before making a huge statement weekend in mid June. The weekend was in North Dakota as Dollansky swept action at the tight bullring of River Cities Speedway aboard the Aggressive Hydraulics paint scheme sprinter including a last lap, last corner, pass around Jason Sides to seal his fourth triumph of the season.
Hard work continued to pay off for the team as they opened up the month of July with another victory in the late stages of the race at Dodge City Raceway Park where the Big Game sprinters once again recorded a 1-2 punch. A strong run and near victory at Beaver Dam Raceway as part of the Jim Boyd Memorial a week later resulted in a runner-up finish heading into ‘The Month of Money’. Strong charges at the Kings Royal and Summer Nationals yielded top-ten finishes before another victory at Lebanon Valley Speedway in New York on July 24th.
Following a trip through Canada, the #7 team returned to ‘The States’ by flexing their muscles the beginning of August during the most grueling race of the season, the 55-lap Ironman 55 event at I-55 Raceway, where the Eaton’s Aeroquip Performance Products #7 recorded victory #7 of the season when Dollansky powered into the lead on lap 4 and raced to the $20,000 payday.
A top-ten finish at the Knoxville Nationals was followed by the teams second trip to Canada and then to the Pacific Northwest where the Elk River, Minnesota native won the opener of a two-day show at Skagit Speedway in Washington. After a top-five finish during the second trip of the season to Silver Dollar Speedway as part of the Gold Cup finale, Dollansky was on the verge of another win in the inaugural Outlaws event at Antioch Speedway but trouble in lapped traffic would erase the strong finish.
The Big Game Treestands #7 team made a quick rebound however at the very next event as they cruised to victory at Clay County Fair Speedway, a race Craig and wife Julie promoted for the fifth straight year. After the mid September event in Iowa with the season winding down the team kept the momentum rolling by reeling off seven top-five finishes, nine in the top-ten, during the eleven remaining events including the World Finals when the team capped off the season with a 4th and 3rd place finish among the 50+ cars competing.
With the 2011 racing season in the books, the Big Game Treestands #7 team is already hard at work at the shop in Princeton, MN as they build on the success from this year and prepare for 2012 which will be here before you know it when actions gets underway in February during the 41st Annual DIRTcar Nationals in Florida.
2011 In Numbers
2 – Last Chance Showdown victories
3 – Pole Positions
3 – Quick Times
5 – Hard Chargers (won overall KSE Hard Charger Award)
5 – Position in the final driver standings
6 – Position in the final owner standings
9 – Feature victories (tied 1st overall)
29 – Top-five finishes (4th overall)
46 – Top-ten finishes (tied 4th overall)
218 – Feature laps led (4th overall)