Concord, NC — With his stay in Australia winding down, Donny Schatz was anxious to return to Victory Lane on Saturday night at Parramatta City Raceway (PCR). The reigning World of Outlaws Champions began his stint at PCR in late December and rattled off five consecutive wins, including the $50,000 Bevelite Glass Classic.
Following his sixth career win and fourth in a row in the prestigious event, Schatz suffered mechanical problems the following race to snap his win streak.
Three straight runs of seventh and better this past week had him back on track at PCR, as he geared up for his final event at the track on Saturday night. Schatz did not disappoint, as he battled Steve Kinser who won the previous two nights at PCR for the win. When the checkers waved on the 40-lap contest, Schatz found himself back in the winner’s circle.
Schatz started fourth on Saturday night and moved around Robbie Farr and multi-time Australian Champion Max Dumesny early on. The native of Fargo, North Dakota then set his sights on Kinser who started from the pole. Schatz shadowed Kinser for a number of laps and passed the 20-time World of Outlaws Champion on the 10th lap as they exited the second turn.
Schatz was quickly able to pull away after taking the lead, but numerous cautions bunched the field up and gave Kinser a couple more chances to make a run on him. Schatz pulled away on each restart and maintained a comfortable advantage as he took the checkered flag.
For Kinser, a native of Bloomington, Indiana, his runner-up finish was his 10th Top-Five finish in the 11 races he contested at PCR over the last four weeks.
Brooke Tatnell lined up seventh for the 40-lapper and after a very entertaining late race battle with Farr and Dumesny, came home in the third spot, to clinch all three of the podium positions for World of Outlaws competitors.
Sammy Swindell, a three-time World of Outlaws Champion backed up his strong performance on Friday night with another solid run on Saturday, coming home in the sixth spot. Danny Lasoski, the 2001 World of Outlaws Champion was seventh. Jason Sides, the 2003 Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year powered his way to a very impressive eighth-place finish after lining up 25th on the grid.
Kerry Madsen, who will compete full-time with the World of Outlaws this season also turned in a very stellar run, as he came from 24th to finish 9th.
Shane Stewart, the 2005 Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year finished 12th, with Paul McMahan in 13th.
Joey Saldana, who drives for NASCAR star Kasey Kahne on the World of Outlaws trail started 27th and worked his way to a very respectable 14th-place finish, with Jason Solwold one spot behind him.
Also racing their way into the 40-lap A-Feature on Saturday night were Tim Kaeding, Chad Hillier, and Jason Meyers.
Other World of Outlaws competitors in action on Saturday night included: Becca Anderson.
In preliminary action, Swindell won the first heat with Hillier third. Lasoski claimed the win in the second heat over Meyers. The third heat saw Tatnell take the victory over Kaeding and McMahan. Solwold was victorious in the fourth heat with Stewart fourth.
By virtue of the points accumulated on the previous two nights of racing, Schatz and Kinser were locked into the dash and thus did not have to take part in the heat races.
The dash saw Kinser take the win to earn the pole position for the A-Feature, with Schatz fourth, Meyers fifth, Swindell sixth, Tatnell seventh, and Solwold eighth.
Schatz, Tatnell, McMahan, Madsen, and Stewart will be in action again in Australia on January 26-27 in the Grand Annual Classic at Premier Speedway in Warrnambool. Daryn Pittman, who finished fourth in World of Outlaws points in 2006, on the strength of seven overall wins will also be in action driving for Titan Racing.
The 2007 World of Outlaws season opens on February 9 at Volusia Speedway Park in Florida with the 36th Annual DIRTcar Nationals Presented By Mopar Speedshop.