Schatz Battles Back to Win the NAPA Auto Parts Rumble at I-96 Speedway

Schatz’s fifth win of the season helps propel him to an eight point lead in the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car championship standings

LAKE ODESSA, Mich. — May 31, 2014 — For the fifth time this season Donny Schatz found himself in victory lane after powering through traffic Saturday night to win the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Cars’ NAPA Auto Parts Rumble at I-96 Speedway.

Schatz, who started fifth, fell back to seventh at the start of the race. Through the next 20 laps he progressed his STP/Armor All car through the field, eventually catching leader Brad Sweet. On lap 21, after a restart two laps earlier, Schatz found the opportunity he needed.  

“It just feels good to have a car that good,” Schatz said. “The track’s tricky… You’re always learning, always trying to find new ways around it. I’ve wanted to win here for a long time.”

This was Schatz’s first win at I-96 Speedway, his fifth win on the season and his 152nd career win. He is now just one win away from tying Mark Kinser for third on the Outlaws all-time win list.

In his quest for a sixth World of Outlaws STP Sprint Cars championship, the win also gave Schatz an eight point lead over second place Daryn Pittman.

The green flag flew on the three-eighths mile I-96 Speedway with Sweet and Cody Darrah in the first row. Joey Saldana and Sammy Swindell rounded out the top four. Sweet jumped out to an early lead as the cars behind him battled for position.

By lap 10, Schatz was already beginning to make his move through the field, battling Paul McMahan, Pittman and Swindell.

The caution flag flew for the first time on lap 17 after Swindell had a tire cut down.

As the green flag again flew, Sweet led Cody Darrah, Schatz and Saldana. A good restart for Schatz moved him into the second position as the cars hit the front stretch.

A flat right rear tire for Darrah brought out another caution on lap 19. This restart proved pivotal for Schatz and David Gravel. As Schatz worked his way around Sweet for the lead, Gravel was able to advance four spots and eventually challenge Saldana for third.

In the closing laps, Gravel took third from Saldana. As Sweet and Schatz worked their way through lapped traffic, Sweet tried to reel Schatz in, but was not able to catch him.

“You always get worried when the 15 is next to you on a slick race track like this,” said Sweet, who has three wins so far this season. “We had a great car though. The SureTest guys worked really hard all night.”

“Donny did everything right. We just got beat by a better driver tonight. I felt like our car was capable of winning. I felt like we could keep up with him in lapped traffic – we had a chance back at it. So hats off to those guys.”

Sweet said his team continues to make progress every week and learn a little bit more. He said he looks forward to the month of June.

Gravel, who also has three wins on the season in his Roth Motorsports car, said the track conditions changed a lot over the course of the night. He credited his team with making good changes to his car.

“I’m glad we made the right adjustments. I had a really good restart on the last restart, got up to fourth and Joey messed up there on a few corners,” Gravel said. “To get on the podium is great. We’ve been struggling to get into the dash, and we finally got into the dash and it paid off.

“You’ve got to adjust as a driver as the race goes on and we made a lot of changes there before the feature and it was right choices.”

Kokomo Speedway in Kokomo, Ind. hosts the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Cars on Wednesday, June 4. The Outlaws then head to I-80 Speedway in Greenwood, Neb. on June 6 and Lakeside Speedway in Kansas City, Kan. for the FVP Outlaws at Lakeside on June 7.

I-96 Speedway NOTES: Donny Schatz now has five wins on the season, second only to Daryn Pittman’s seven wins… After tonight’s Napa Auto Parts Rumble at I-96, Schatz also took an eight point lead in the championship standings… Shane Stewart was tonight’s KSE Hard Charger Award winner, gaining six positions from his starting place.

SEASON WINNERS: Daryn Pittman – 7 (Thunderbowl Raceway on March 14, Calistoga Speedway on April 6 and Devil’s Bowl Speedway on April 19, Williams Grove Speedway on May 16 and May 17, Orange County Fair Speedway, May 18, New Egypt Speedway, May 20); Donny Schatz – 5 (Volusia Speedway Park on Feb. 15, The Dirt Track at Las Vegas on March 6 and Devil’s Bowl Speedway on April 19, Lawrenceburg Speedway on May 27; I-96 Speedway on May 31); David Gravel – 3 (Merced Speedway on March 28, Eldora Speedway on May 3, and Wilmot Raceway on May 9); Joey Saldana – 3 (Perris Auto Speedway on April 12 and Salina Highbanks on April 25, The Dirt Track at Charlotte on May 23); Brad Sweet – 3 (Volusia Speedway Park on Feb. 14, Tucson International Raceway on March 8 and Calistoga Speedway on April 5); Kerry Madsen – 2 (Stockton Dirt track  on March 22 and El Paso Speedway Park on April 15); Paul McMahan – 2 (The Dirt Track at Las Vegas on March 5, Tri-State Speedway on May 10); Rico Abreu – 1 (Thunderbowl Raceway on March 15); Dale Blaney – 1 (Attica Raceway Park on May 30); Christopher Bell – 1 (Jacksonville Speedway on May 7); Cody Darrah – 1 (Kings Speedway on April 11); Steve Kinser – 1 (Volusia Speedway Park on Feb. 16); Stevie Smith – 1 (Lincoln Speedway on May 14); Shane Stewart – 1 (Eldora Speedway on May 2); Sammy Swindell – 1 (Federated Auto Parts Raceway at I-55 on April 26).

 

World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series Statistical Report; I-96 Speedway; Lake Odessa, Mich.; May 31, 2014

A-Main – (35 Laps) – 1. 15-Donny Schatz [5] [$10,000]; 2. 49-Brad Sweet [1] [$5,500]; 3. 83-David Gravel [8] [$3,200]; 4. 9-Daryn Pittman [6] [$2,800]; 5. 51-Paul McMahan [7] [$2,500]; 6. 2-Shane Stewart [12] [$2,300]; 7. 71M-Joey Saldana [3] [$2,200]; 8. 29-Kerry Madsen [9] [$2,100]; 9. 3G-James McFadden [15] [$2,050]; 10. 1S-Logan Schuchart [10] [$2,000]; 11. 11-Steve Kinser [11] [$1,500]; 12. 11K-Kraig Kinser [17] [$1,200]; 13. 1-Sammy Swindell [4] [$1,100]; 14. 7S-Jason Sides [18] [$1,050]; 15. 24H-Brandon Wimmer [14] [$1,000]; 16. 4-Cody Darrah [2] [$900]; 17. 99-Brady Bacon [13] [$800]; 18. W20-Greg Wilson [23] [$800]; 19. 2M-Dustin Daggett [16] [$800]; 20. 83D-Tommy Sexton [19] [$800]; 21. 5B-Quentin Blonde [21] [$800]; 22. 10S-Jason Steinebach [22] [$800]; 23. 1A-Jacob Allen [20] [$800]. Lap Leaders: Brad Sweet 1-20, Donny Schatz 21-35. KSE Hard Charger Award: 2-Shane Stewart [+6]

Qualifying – 1. 83-David Gravel, 13.985; 2. 15-Donny Schatz, 14.319; 3. 1-Sammy Swindell, 14.349; 4. 71M-Joey Saldana, 14.354; 5. 4-Cody Darrah, 14.370; 6. 29-Kerry Madsen, 14.465; 7. 49-Brad Sweet, 14.518; 8. 1S-Logan Schuchart, 14.570; 9. 11-Steve Kinser, 14.615; 10. 2-Shane Stewart, 14.712; 11. 9-Daryn Pittman, 14.781; 12. 51-Paul McMahan, 14.803; 13. 99-Brady Bacon, 14.906; 14. 24H-Brandon Wimmer, 15.052; 15. 3G-James McFadden, 15.084; 16. 2M-Dustin Daggett, 15.121; 17. 11K-Kraig Kinser, 15.122; 18. 7S-Jason Sides, 15.136; 19. 83D-Tommy Sexton, 15.153; 20. 1A-Jacob Allen, 15.445; 21. 5B-Quentin Blonde, 16.033; 22. 10S-Jason Steinebach, 16.679; 23. W20-Greg Wilson, nt

Heat 1 – (8 Laps – Top 6 finishers transfer to the A-feature) – 1. 49-Brad Sweet [2]; 2. 2-Shane Stewart [1]; 3. 71M-Joey Saldana [3]; 4. 99-Brady Bacon [5]; 5. 83-David Gravel [4]; 6. 2M-Dustin Daggett [6]; 7. 83D-Tommy Sexton [7]; 8. 10S-Jason Steinebach [8]

Heat 2 – (8 Laps – Top 6 finishers transfer to the A-feature) – 1. 9-Daryn Pittman [1]; 2. 15-Donny Schatz [4]; 3. 24H-Brandon Wimmer [5]; 4. 11K-Kraig Kinser [6]; 5. 4-Cody Darrah [3]; 6. 1S-Logan Schuchart [2]; 7. 1A-Jacob Allen [7]; 8. W20-Greg Wilson [8]

Heat 3 – (8 Laps – Top 6 finishers transfer to the A-feature) – 1. 51-Paul McMahan [1]; 2. 29-Kerry Madsen [3]; 3. 7S-Jason Sides [6]; 4. 1-Sammy Swindell [4]; 5. 11-Steve Kinser [2]; 6. 3G-James McFadden [5]; 7. 5B-Quentin Blonde [7]

Dash – (6 Laps, finishing order determined first 8 starting positions of A-feature) – 1. 49-Brad Sweet [1]; 2. 4-Cody Darrah [2]; 3. 71M-Joey Saldana [3]; 4. 1-Sammy Swindell [4]; 5. 15-Donny Schatz [5]; 6. 9-Daryn Pittman [7]; 7. 51-Paul McMahan [8]; 8. 83-David Gravel [6]

World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series Championship Standings

Pos

Car

Driver

Total

Diff

Wins

Top 5’s

Top 10’s

QT

1

15

Donny Schatz

4679

0

5

22

30

2

2

9

Daryn Pittman

4671

-8

7

19

28

2

3

71M

Joey Saldana

4643

-36

3

20

26

12

4

51

Paul McMahan

4606

-73

2

18

29

6

5

29

Kerry Madsen

4447

-232

2

11

26

2

6

49

Brad Sweet

4415

-264

3

13

22

1

7

11

Steve Kinser

4294

-385

1

7

20

0

8

4

Cody Darrah

4208

-471

1

7

17

1

9

11k

Kraig Kinser

4119

-560

0

2

11

0

10

1

Sammy Swindell

4013

-666

1

6

11

1

11

7s

Jason Sides

3712

-967

0

1

5

0

12

83

David Gravel

3549

-1130

3

8

18

3

13

1S

Logan Schuchart

3545

-1134

0

2

6

0

14

1A

Jacob Allen

2991

-1688

0

0

1

0

15

1Z

Lucas Wolfe

2231

-2448

0

1

4

0

16

83

Tim Kaeding

1992

-2687

0

3

10

0

17

W20

Greg Wilson

1898

-2781

0

0

1

0

18

9W

Jac Haudenschild

1512

-3167

0

1

3

0

19

21

Brian Brown

1491

-3188

0

1

2

0

20

77X

Wayne Johnson

1420

-3259

0

0

0

0

The World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series is brought to fans across the country by many important sponsors and partners, including: American Racing Custom Wheels (Official Custom Wheel), Armor All (Official Car Care Products), Lincoln Welders (Official Welder), STP (Official Fuel Treatment), Hoosier Racing Tire (Official Tire), VP Racing Fuels (Official Racing Fuel); in addition to contingency sponsors, including: Bruce High Performance Transporters, Cometic Gasket, Comp Cams, Edelbrock, JE Pistons, KSE Racing Products, Mobil 1, MSD, Sweet Manufacturing, and Superflow Dynos; along with manufacturer sponsors, including: ButlerBuilt, Intercomp, J&J Auto Racing, Jake’s Carts, Racing Electronics, S&S Volvo and TNT Rescue.