Concord, NC — For the fourth consecutive year, Donny Schatz is one of the 10 finalists in the running for the Economaki Champion of Champions Award, which is presented by National Speed Sport News. Schatz, who claimed his fourth consecutive World of Outlaws title in 2009, was the recipient of the Economaki Champion of Champions Award in 2008.
For each of the past six seasons, NSSN has awarded the Economaki Champion of Champions to the driver of the year. The award is named after the longtime Editor and Publisher Emeritus of the paper, the legendary Chris Economaki. The 2009 winner will be featured in the year-end December 16th issue of the paper.
Schatz graced the cover of the famed publication a number of times this past season, including after winning his fourth consecutive Knoxville Nationals and his second Kings Royal at Eldora Speedway. He also was among the Top-10 in the weekly “Power Rankings” for a large part of the season, including sitting atop the poll a couple of times.
Schatz won a total of 12 times with the World of Outlaws in 2009, including picking up his 100th career A-Feature win with the series at Dacotah Speedway in his home state of North Dakota. In winning his fourth consecutive title, he became the only driver other than 20-time series champion Steve Kinser to win four championships and only the second driver ever to win four straight. Schatz led the World of Outlaws with 39 Top-Five finishes this past season to edge Jason Meyers by just 19 markers in the final championship standings, in what was the closest finish in the 30-plus year history of the series.
For drivers to earn a nomination for the Economaki Champion of Champions Award, they must have won a title in North America during the 2009 season and are judged by a combination of their on-track success and dedication to their sport off the track.
Other finalists include: Josh Richards, who claimed his first World of Outlaws Late Model Series title in 2009, along with Kyle Busch, the NASCAR Nationwide Series champion, Mike Edwards, the NHRA Pro Stock titlist, Dario Franchitti, the IZOD IndyCar Series champ, Robert Hight, the NHRA Funny Car champion, Ron Hornaday, the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series title winner, Jimmie Johnson, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion, Brad Kuhn, the USAC Midget & POWERi Midget Champion and Tony Schumacher, the NHRA Top Fuel titlist.
In addition to Schatz being named the Economaki Champion of Champions in 2008, Steve Kinser earned the honor in 2004 making the World of Outlaws the only series that has had more than one driver earn the honor.
The World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series is brought to fans across the country by many important sponsors and partners, including: Armor All (Official Car Care Products), Crane Cams (Official Valvetrain), Hoosier Racing Tires (Official Racing Tires), Fusion Energy Boost (Official Energy Boost), Quaker State (Official Motor Oil), SuperClean (Official Cleaner-Degreaser), VP Racing (Official Racing Fuel); in addition to contingency sponsors, Jake’s Custom Golf Carts, KSE Race Products, Penske Shocks, Racing Electronics, S&S Volvo; Engine Builder’s Challenge participants Don Ott Racing Engines, Kistler Engines, Shaver Specialties and Speedway Engines; and Chassis Builder’s Challenge participants J&J Auto Racing, Maxim Racing and XXX Race Company.