One of the most important dirt ovals in Sprint Car racing history can be found 20 minutes outside of Dallas.
Devil’s Bowl Speedway in Mesquite, TX.
The track is known as the home of the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Cars after hosting the Series’ inaugural race in 1978. The Greatest Show on Dirt has visited the half mile dozens of times in the years since – a tradition that will sadly come to a close this weekend (Oct. 20-21). Promoter Lanny Ross Edwards recently confirmed the sale of the track, meaning this weekend’s Sprint Car Stampede will be the final two nights of racing at the historic facility.
Throughout the years, Devil’s Bowl Victory Lane has been reserved for the sport’s best names – many already in the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame and others on their way. Of the 28 different drivers to top a race at the half mile, only three of them have less than 10 World of Outlaws triumphs.
California’s Jimmy Boyd won the Series debut event on March 18, 1978, forever cementing himself as the first World of Outlaws winner.
Later that year in September, the driver who went on to become the most dominant at Devil’s Bowl, Sammy Swindell, came out on top for his first win at the track. The Germantown, TN legend eventually collected 18 triumphs in Mesquite, winning races in four different decades (‘70s, ‘80s, ‘90s, ‘00s). Swindell’s dominance was highlighted by a five-race winning streak in 1986-1987.
To nobody’s surprise, next in line to win at Devil’s Bowl after Swindell was Steve Kinser in March of 1979. “The King” tallied 16 of his 690 Feature wins at the half mile, trailing only Swindell’s total. Behind Steve is his cousin, Mark Kinser, with six victories including a streak of three straight in 1996-1997.
Hooks, TX native, Gary Wright, may not have the number of wins as Swindell and both Kinsers, but he proved he could contend with anyone at the track located just a few hours west of his hometown. Wright won six races with the World of Outlaws during his time, and all but one came at Devil’s Bowl – each occurring in the ‘90s.
Danny Lasoski’s four Devil’s Bowl wins rank fifth all-time. The 2001 Series champion and 122-time Series winner experienced a brief stretch of dominance at the facility, earning all four of his victories over an eight-race span from 1999-2001.
Behind the top-five that separated themselves, the list gets a little crowded. Seven drivers have won three times at Devil’s Bowl, all of which are in the top 20 on the all-time Series win list. Among the three-time winners are current full-timers, 10-time Series champion Donny Schatz and Logan Schuchart. The latter of the two became only the third driver to top three consecutive World of Outlaws races at Devil’s Bowl with his wins from 2019-2021.
Those with a pair of Devil’s Bowl victories include even more legends like 1995 Series champion Dave Blaney (95 career wins), four-time and reigning champion Brad Sweet (89 wins), Stevie Smith (84 wins) and Jeff Swindell (51 wins), among others making two trips to Victory Lane.
Ten different drivers have won once at Devil’s Bowl, most recently James McFadden back on April 1.
This weekend offers two final chances for drivers to add their name to the Devil’s Bowl win list and position themselves next to legends. If the current list is any indicator, it’s nearly a guarantee that name will go down in history as one of the greats of the sport and a trip to the Hall of Fame may be on the horizon.
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Devil’s Bowl Speedway Winners (92 Races, 28 Drivers)
18 – Sammy Swindell
16 – Steve Kinser
6 – Mark Kinser
5 – Gary Wright
4 – Danny Lasoski
3 – Doug Wolfgang, Bobby Davis Jr., Andy Hillenburg, Joey Saldana, Daryn Pittman, Donny Schatz, Logan Schuchart
2 – Ron Shuman, Jeff Swindell, Dave Blaney, Stevie Smith, Shane Stewart, Brad Sweet
1 – Jimmy Boyd, Danny Smith, Tim Green, Bobby Allen, Craig Dollansky, Brad Furr, Tyler Walker, Jason Johnson, Brent Marks, James McFadden