David Gravel Chasing Fourth Straight World of Outlaws Win at Wilmot
WILMOT, WI — May 31, 2018 — If it was up to David Gravel, the World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series would have a handful of races each year at Wilmot Raceway in Wisconsin. Why is that? Because, he is undefeated with the Outlaws at the track, having won each of the three starts he has made at Wilmot with the series.
Gravel returns to Wilmot Raceway this weekend on Saturday, June 2 for the running of the Badger 40 for the World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series. The event will mark the third straight year the series has visited the track and the sixth overall appearance for the Outlaws at Wilmot, dating back to 2006.
“I don’t know if there is any added pressured,” said Gravel, when asked about his three-race Wilmot win streak. “You definitely always look forward to going to a track that you have run well at. I’m happy to get back there. The fans are awesome there and it’s a place that has always suited me well. Hopefully, we can run just as good this time when we go back.”
The driver of the No. 5 for CJB Motorsports has had a great amount success on smaller tracks, such as Wilmot, in his career with the World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series. He recently won on a quarter-mile at Tri-State Speedway in Indiana. Of his 36 career Outlaws wins, 12 have come on tracks that would be considered “bullrings.”
“Right now we seem to be better at the smaller tracks, for whatever reason,” he shared. “We’ve been struggling a little bit on big tracks and just have to get that squared away. It seems like we have a good small-track package.”
After starting the season out with five consecutive nights of racing in Florida, including a pair with the Arctic Cat All Star Circuit of Champions, Gravel and his fellow World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series competitors have battled Mother Nature numerous times this season. Through May 25, a total of 21 races have been completed, while another 16 have been either postponed or canceled due to rain and inclement weather.
“It’s tough,” Gravel said of the inclement weather. “You enjoy the days off, but at the end of the day, you need to get races in. You have to race to make up for lost time and gain on the guys that are ahead of us. Things were starting to kind of play out, until we had the four rainouts in a row, recently. It’s just one those things, though. You never know what Mother Nature is going to do. Hopefully, we can get a bunch of races in coming and it will be Knoxville (Nationals) time before we know it. The next couple of months will be pretty busy, with all of the races on the schedule.”
Gravel has passed more than his fair share of cars in A-Feature events this season. He has earned the KSE Racing Products Hard Charger Award twice. As of late, Gravel has also been near the top of the charts in time trials, earning a Fast Time Award at Lawrenceburg Speedway in Indiana on Memorial Day.
“We had some trouble in time trials at the beginning of the season, but we think we found the root of that problem,” he explained. “Hopefully from here on out, we’ll be able to qualify where we should.”
Gravel, who is coming off a career-year, which saw him win 18 A-Feature events with the World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series and 20 races overall, has 36 career wins with the series. That win total has him 17thon the Outlaws all-time win list. Gravel is currently third in points on the strength of 16 top-10 finishes in 21 starts, with 10 of those being top-five performances. Along with his win at Lawrenceburg, he also was victorious at Cotton Bowl Speedway in Texas.
“We are there to win races and hopefully we can start to click off more very soon,” he noted of the outlook for the rest of the season. “We’ve had a pretty solid year so far. We started off the first couple of weeks kind of rough, but since then it’s been a pretty good season. We just have to keep doing what we are doing and hopefully will click off a few wins and keep pushing forward.”
Gravel has been fast throughout the night at Wilmot, over the course of his three-race win streak at the track, having been among the top-five in time trials in two of those three events. The 25-year-old also has a pair of heat race wins and has been in the dash, all three times.
Last season at Wilmot, Gravel took the lead from Brad Sweet on lap-28 of the Badger 40. He was locked in an epic battle with Shane Stewart down the stretch as the pair traded the top spot four times over the last 10 laps, including twice in the final three laps.
“We obviously have really good notes at Wilmot,” said Gravel. “We are going to try to unload the same way and see what we have. Our confidence is high and we know we can do it. We all just have to go out and do our jobs and that’s what we strive for each and every night, no matter what track we at and if we have won there in the past or not.”
Tickets for the Badger 40, featuring the World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series at Wilmot Raceway on Saturday, June 2 can be purchased in advance online at https://slspromotions.ticketforce.comand at the track on race day.