KING OF CALI: Brad Sweet Becomes California’s Winningest Outlaw

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Sweet's 59 Career Victories Tops All 28 World of Outlaws Winners from California

Since the dawn of the Outlaws at Devil’s Bowl in ’78, Californians have been a constant staple with The Greatest Show on Dirt.

Now, for the first time in 16 years, there’s a new man sitting on the mountaintop above California’s 28 World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series winners.

With his 59th career win at Volusia (FL) Speedway Park on February 5, 2021, Brad Sweet of Grass Valley, CA officially moved beyond Jason Meyers of Clovis, CA to become the winningest California native in World of Outlaws history. Ironically enough, those two are the only drivers from The Golden State to ever score an Outlaws title, both doing so twice and both doing it back-to-back.

The Big Cat’s journey began way back in 2003 when the young 17-year-old kid made his World of Outlaws debut at Silver Dollar’s Gold Cup. His first-career start would not come until a year later at Calistoga Speedway on September 3, 2004. Throughout his early-to-mid 20’s, Sweet ran Outlaw shows when possible, but he was then full-time with the USAC National Midgets and USAC National Sprint Cars before transitioning to pavement with more than 50 starts across the NASCAR Trucks and NASCAR Xfinity Series.

Finally, in his 112th attempt, Sweet scored his first-career World of Outlaws win at Clay County (IA) Fairgrounds on June 8, 2012. He nabbed a massive King’s Royal crown in 2013, and then joined the Series full-time with Kasey Kahne Racing in 2014. Since then, the rest has been history.

All 59 of Sweet’s Outlaw wins have come with Kasey Kahne Racing. [Chris Owens]

As mentioned, though, California’s relationship with the Outlaws goes back to the very beginning. After all, Oakland’s Jimmy Boyd was the inaugural winner at Devil’s Bowl on March 17, 1978. Boyd, along with Johnny Anderson of Palmdale, Buster Venard of Tustin, and Rick Goudy of Cerritos, were the four Cali kids to score Outlaw wins that first year.

In 1979, Anderson broke through to become the first Californian with multiple triumphs against the Outlaws. His wins at East Bay (FL), Tulsa (OK), and Champaign (IL) put him atop the list until Tim Green of San Jose came calling. Green won the first Rookie of the Year award in Series history in ’79, then busted out a career-year in 1980 with six victories at Houston (TX), Riverside (AR), Lakeside (KS), Tri-City (IL), Grandview (PA) and Knoxville (IA).

For almost 25 whole years, Green’s eventual mark of 12 career victories was the most of any Californian until Hot Foot Jason Meyers hit the circuit. The Clovis native surpassed Green with his 13th win on June 3, 2005 at Sharon (OH), and ended up driving his tally all the way to 58 career wins to go along with his 2010 and 2011 World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series championships.

Meyers was the California king for more than 15 years until Sweet took the throne just two weeks ago.

In ’10 & ’11, Meyers became the first Outlaws champion from California. [Paul Arch]

In total, 28 California natives have earned a feature win with the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series. They’re the second most diverse state behind only the Pennsylvania Posses’s 33 winners.

A pair of 70’s babies made their mark when Tyler Walker of Los Angeles rose to 12 victories and Tim Kaeding of San Jose soared to 21, which ranks as the third-most of any Californian. The newest generation including Rico Abreu (8 wins) and Carson Macedo (6 wins) have recently advanced into the top ten.

Advancing from tenth-to-fourth on the list last year, Elk Grove’s Kyle Larson made a huge splash amid his magnificent 2020 campaign. His single-season total of 12 victories pushed him to 20 career wins in only 94 features with the World of Outlaws Sprint Cars.

Larson’s 12 wins in 2020 shot him up the California wins list. [Trent Gower]

The World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series resumes the 2021 season next weekend with a doubleheader at Cotton Bowl (TX) Speedway on Friday & Saturday, February 26-27. Fans can BUY TICKETS HERE for the Paige, TX event. It’s the first two of another 80+ races left this year for Sweet to try and build his advantage as California’s winningest Outlaw.

California Winners vs. World of Outlaws

  1. 59 wins – Brad Sweet (Grass Valley, CA)
  2. 58 wins – Jason Meyers (Clovis, CA)
  3. 21 wins – Tim Kaeding (San Jose, CA)
  4. 20 wins – Kyle Larson (Elk Grove, CA)
  5. 12 wins – Tim Green (San Jose, CA)
  6. 12 wins – Tyler Walker (Los Angeles, CA)
  7. 9 wins – Brent Kaeding (Campbell, CA)
  8. 8 wins – Jimmy Sills (Placerville, CA)
  9. 8 wins – Rico Abreu (St. Helena, CA)
  10. 6 wins – Carson Macedo (Lemoore, CA)
  11. 5 wins – Johnny Anderson (Palmdale, CA)
  12. 5 wins – Brad Furr (Pleasanton, CA)
  13. 3 wins – Lee James (Northridge, CA)
  14. 2 wins – Darrell Hanestad (San Lorenzo, CA)
  15. 2 wins – Randy Hannagan (San Jose, CA)
  16. 2 wins – Cory Eliason (Visalia, CA)
  17. 2 wins – Shane Golobic (Fremont, CA)
  18. 2 wins – Gio Scelzi (Fresno, CA)
  19. 1 win – Jimmy Boyd (Oakland, CA)
  20. 1 win – Buster Venard (Tustin, CA)
  21. 1 win – Rick Goudy (Cerritos, CA)
  22. 1 win – Dean Thompson (Carson, CA)
  23. 1 win – Dave Bradway Jr. (Roseville, CA)
  24. 1 win – Chuck Miller (Morgan Hill, CA)
  25. 1 win – Jason Statler (Grass Valley, CA)
  26. 1 win – Sean Becker (Oroville, CA)
  27. 1 win – Jonathan Allard (Chico, CA)
  28. 1 win – Kyle Hirst (Paradise, CA)

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