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Talladega Sprint Car Showdown
Talladega Short Track | Eastaboga, Alabama
Friday, March 24, 2023
Race Recap  

‘DEGA DOMINATION: Buddy Kofoid Claims World of Outlaws Return to Talladega

With Buddy Kofoid’s early season performance, it wasn’t a matter of if he’d win a World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car race this year, but when.

Entering this year, the two-time and defending USAC National Midget champion elected to return to his roots by focusing on a Sprint Car centric schedule with CMS Racing. Kofoid cut his teeth in Sprint Cars on California’s bullrings, garnering national attention for his talents as a teenager. The decision to refocus on Sprint Cars has already proven to be wise. Despite not being a full-timer, Kofoid had competed in all six Series races in 2023 heading into Friday night’s event at Eastaboga, AL’s Talladega Short Track and tallied a pair of podiums and four top-10s.

The Penngrove, CA native made his imminent breakthrough into Victory Lane at Talladega with a dominating performance, leading all 35 laps around the red clay oval during his first visit to the track and the World of Outlaws first since 2011. The triumph marked his second career Series win in his 31st Feature start. Kofoid also became the second straight California “invader” to win after St. Helena, CA’s Rico Abreu topped The Greatest Show on Dirt last Saturday.

Kofoid’s numbers speak to his unquestionable strides in 2023. Entering this year, he owned 24 World of Outlaws starts and had collected a win, two podiums and five top-fives. In only seven starts this season, he’s added another victory, three podiums, and a trio of top-fives.

“They’re next level,” Kofoid said of his race team. “I owe it all to the crew. They’ve been plugging away. Brad Alexander, Stephen Hamm-Reilly, and Jakob Weaver, they do a hell of a job. I really enjoy racing with them right now. It’s been probably one of the most fun times I’ve had racing sprint cars in a while and standing up here (Victory Lane) makes it even better.”

The entirety of the race became a game of cat and mouse between Kofoid and four-time and defending Series champion, Brad Sweet. Early on, Kofoid jumped ahead from the pole and survived a flurry of early cautions by exceling on every restart.

Behind Kofoid, Sweet patiently worked on second-starting Rico Abreu before getting by on a restart with 28 laps to go. The Kasey Kahne Racing driver then set his sights on the lead and began to reel in the CMS #11.

Buddy Kofoid
Buddy Kofoid has been strong all season aboard the CMS Racing #11 (Trent Gower Photo)

It became a battle of two lines as Kofoid opted for the top around the entire track while Sweet searched on the bottom and middle grooves for grip. The driver of the Napa Racing #49 often found lanes that worked as he closed on Kofoid’s tail tank several times before Kofoid began to move around the surface.

“It seemed like every time I found a lane, he was able to kind of counter it,” Sweet observed. “It was a super technical race. The track was extremely hard to get ahold of. The track changed a lot, so you had to do a lot with your hands and feet, and the wings were trunked pretty quick.”

For Kofoid, he noted that his movement to different lanes was much more of an offensive tactic to navigate traffic than a defensive one.

“I wasn’t really catching the lappers a whole lot more,” Kofoid explained. “I kind of got within a half a straightaway of them and couldn’t get going more, so I just started railing the top in (Turns) three and four, and eventually I moved to the bottom and passed a guy. Then I was kind of even with the next guys, and I decided to run the middle when it started to look darker and got my wing back and could make so much more speed. I figured that was definitely the ticket right there.”

It was, indeed, the ticket as in the waning laps, Kofoid put a healthy gap between himself and Sweet. Ultimately, the 21-year-old took the checkered flag with a 1.238 second advantage.

“It’s a catch-22 in lapped traffic, you can put them away or it can hurt you and slow you down,” Kofoid commented. “Luckily, everything went well, and we brought a fast car this weekend.”

Sweet held on to the runner-up spot, his third second-place finish in the last four races. The result marked a noteworthy milestone as Sweet gained sole possession of 11th on the all-time World of Outlaws podium list with his 260th top-three, breaking a tie with Stevie Smith.

“He (Kofoid) just did a good job,” Sweet said. “I think I was better the first half or three-quarters of the race, at least really close. And then at the end, he just kind of found a lane and got a little clean air out in the middle there and got the top going.”

Completing the podium was Spencer Bayston aboard the CJB Motorsports #5. The Lebanon, IN native tallied his first top-three of the season to continue a recent strong stretch. Last year’s Rookie of the Year now has a 6.25 average finish in his last four starts. Bayston nearly made it a three-car battle for the lead on a few occasions but ultimately couldn’t find the right moment to capitalize.

“Through the race I felt pretty good,” Bayston said. “The track was starting to widen out, and things were kind of falling into place a little bit and started getting my wing back and really felt like we kind of hit our stride and got to traffic there. I felt like maybe I had once or twice to pull the trigger on Brad, but I just tried to be patient because I wanted him to get Buddy sucked back to both of us, but that didn’t ever develop. So, we’ll definitely take our third, very solid performance.”

UP NEXT: Next up for the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Cars is a trip to Magnolia Motor Speedway tomorrow (March 25). For tickets, CLICK HERE.

If you can’t make it to the track, watch all the action live on DIRTVision.


A Feature (35 Laps): 1. 11-Michael Kofoid[1]; 2. 49-Brad Sweet[3]; 3. 5-Spencer Bayston[5]; 4. 2-David Gravel[6]; 5. 15-Donny Schatz[8]; 6. 17-Sheldon Haudenschild[7]; 7. 24-Rico Abreu[2]; 8. 18-Giovanni Scelzi[4]; 9. 41-Carson Macedo[12]; 10. 9-Kasey Kahne[9]; 11. 3Z-Brock Zearfoss[10]; 12. 8-Aaron Reutzel[14]; 13. 9P-Parker Price Miller[17]; 14. 1S-Logan Schuchart[21]; 15. 17B-Bill Balog[20]; 16. 7S-Robbie Price[25]; 17. 11K-Kraig Kinser[18]; 18. 24W-Garet Williamson[23]; 19. 20G-Noah Gass[19]; 20. 1A-Jacob Allen[22]; 21. 47-Eric Riggins Jr[13]; 22. 83-James McFadden[16]; 23. 88-Austin McCarl[11]; 24. 55-Hunter Schuerenberg[15]; 25. 37-Bryce Norris[24]

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Feature Results
11011Michael Kofoid 350.00035Running150$10,000
23+149Brad Sweet 35-1.238Running146$6,000
35+25Spencer Bayston 35-2.084Running144$3,500
46+22David Gravel 35-3.312Running142$2,800
58+315Donny Schatz 35-5.672Running140$2,500
67+117Sheldon Haudenschild 35-6.294Running138$2,300
72-524Rico Abreu 35-6.653Running136$2,200
84-418Giovanni Scelzi 35-7.139Running134$2,100
912+341Carson Macedo 35-8.139Running132$2,050
109-19Kasey Kahne 35-8.643Running130$2,000
1110-13ZBrock Zearfoss 35-9.057Running128$1,600
1214+28Aaron Reutzel 35-9.460Running126$1,400
1317+49PParker Price-Miller 35-10.068Running124$1,200
1421+71SLogan Schuchart 35-10.486Running122$1,100
1520+517BBill Balog 35-14.961Running120$1,050
1625+97SRobbie Price 35-13.207Running118$0
1718+111KKraig Kinser 35-14.146Running116$1,000
1823+524WGaret Williamson 35-14.961Running114$1,000
1919020GNoah Gass 34-1 LapsRunning112$1,000
2022+21AJacob Allen 34-1 LapsRunning110$1,000
2113-847Eric Riggins Jr34-1 LapsRunning108$1,000
2216-683James McFadden 25-10 LapsDNF106$1,000
2311-1288Austin McCarl 22-13 LapsDNF104$1,000
2415-955Hunter Schuerenberg 7-28 LapsDNF102$1,000
2524-137Bryce Norris 7-28 LapsDNF102$1,000
KSE Hard Charger: Robbie Price
Last Chance Showdown 1 Results
11020GNoah Gass 120.00012Running0$0
22017BBill Balog 120.000Running0$0
34+11SLogan Schuchart 120.000Running0$0
45+11AJacob Allen 120.000Running0$0
58+324WGaret Williamson 120.000Running0$0
63-337Bryce Norris 120.000Running0$0
7707SRobbie Price 120.000Running0$300
89+16Bill Rose 120.000Running90$250
911+216THKevin Newton 120.000Running90$225
106-413Todd Fayard 0-12 LapsDNS90$200
1110-144Carson Short 0-12 LapsDNS90$200
Dash 1 Results
11011Michael Kofoid 80.0008Running0$0
22024Rico Abreu 8-2.968Running0$0
36+349Brad Sweet 8-3.241Running0$0
44018Giovanni Scelzi 8-4.062Running0$0
53-25Spencer Bayston 8-4.325Running0$0
65-12David Gravel 8-4.668Running0$0
Heat 1 Results
Pos.Start+/-#DriverLaps CompletedBehindLaps LedStatus
1102David Gravel 100.00010Running
22018Giovanni Scelzi 10-0.527Running
33017Sheldon Haudenschild 10-1.358Running
47+33ZBrock Zearfoss 10-2.121Running
59+447Eric Riggins Jr10-4.014Running
64-283James McFadden 10-5.658Running
710+337Bryce Norris 10-6.847Running
85-320GNoah Gass 10-7.746Running
98-124WGaret Williamson 2-8 LapsDNF
106-417BBill Balog 0-10 LapsDNS
Heat 2 Results
Pos.Start+/-#DriverLaps CompletedBehindLaps LedStatus
1105Spencer Bayston 100.00010Running
22024Rico Abreu 10-2.838Running
33015Donny Schatz 10-3.414Running
45+188Austin McCarl 10-4.412Running
54-18Aaron Reutzel 10-6.012Running
6609PParker Price-Miller 10-7.077Running
7701SLogan Schuchart 10-7.718Running
89+113Todd Fayard 10-10.733Running
98-16Bill Rose 9-1 LapsRunning
1010016THKevin Newton 0-10 LapsDNS
Heat 3 Results
Pos.Start+/-#DriverLaps CompletedBehindLaps LedStatus
12+111Michael Kofoid 100.00010Running
21-149Brad Sweet 10-2.131Running
34+19Kasey Kahne 10-4.582Running
43-141Carson Macedo 10-5.307Running
55055Hunter Schuerenberg 10-6.412Running
66011KKraig Kinser 10-8.493Running
7701AJacob Allen 10-9.706Running
8807SRobbie Price 10-10.814Running
99044Carson Short 9-1 LapsRunning
Qualifying Flight 1 Results
142David Gravel Watertown, CT11.9090.000
275Spencer Bayston Lebanon, IN11.955-0.046
31349Brad Sweet Grass Valley, CA11.976-0.067
42218Giovanni Scelzi Fresno, CA11.996-0.087
51524Rico Abreu St. Helena, CA12.036-0.127
62811Michael Kofoid Penngrove, CA12.073-0.164
72717Sheldon Haudenschild Wooster, OH12.100-0.191
8515Donny Schatz Fargo, ND12.150-0.241
9941Carson Macedo Lemoore, CA12.165-0.256
102383James McFadden Alice Springs, NT12.177-0.268
1168Aaron Reutzel Clute, TX12.195-0.286
12249Kasey Kahne Enumclaw, WA12.203-0.294
131920GNoah Gass Mounds, OK12.207-0.298
14888Austin McCarl Altoona, IA12.241-0.332
151155Hunter Schuerenberg Sikeston, MO12.272-0.363
162017BBill Balog North Pole, AK12.283-0.374
17259PParker Price-Miller Kokomo, IN12.325-0.416
18311KKraig Kinser Bloomington, IN12.331-0.422
19123ZBrock Zearfoss Jonestown, PA12.361-0.452
20101SLogan Schuchart Hanover, PA12.367-0.458
2121AJacob Allen Hanover, PA12.385-0.476
221624WGaret Williamson Columbia, MO12.603-0.694
23216Bill Rose Plainfield, IN12.625-0.716
24297SRobbie Price Cobble Hill, BC12.680-0.771
251747Eric Riggins JrCharlotte, NC12.728-0.819
261413Todd Fayard D'lberville, MS12.764-0.855
272644Carson Short Marion, IL12.908-0.999
28137Bryce Norris Terre Haute, IN14.145-2.236
291816THKevin Newton Terre Haute, IN14.145-2.236
Hot Laps Results
12811Michael Kofoid Penngrove, CA0.0000.000
DIRTVision Highlights  
Event Info  

Talladega Sprint Car Showdown
Friday, March 24, 2023
Talladega Short Track
4343 Speedway Blvd
Eastaboga, Alabama 36260 

Event Description
12 years later, the Outlaws return to Talladega's Short Track. Back in 2011, now-championship contender David Gravel won his first-career World of Outlaws Feature at this Alabama staple.

Series Racing
World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series

To Win Amount

Event Schedule
2:00 PM - Pit Gates Open
5:00 PM - Grandstand Gates Open
6:30 PM - Hot Laps/Qualifying with Opening Ceremonies and Racing to Follow
*All times Central

Ticket Options  
Options And Prices
Adult GA: $35 Advanced / $40 Day of Race
Child GA: $10

Grandstand Type
Bleacher seating

Handicapped Seating Location
Main grandstand

Pit Pass Price

Parking Cost

Camping Availability

Camping Cost
Reserved: $75 for the weekend; Drive up/Non-reserved camping: $80 for the weekend; Tent Camping: $15 per day

Frequently Asked Questions  
To Win Amount

Type of Grandstand
Bleacher seating

Stadium Seating
Seats are allowed

Handicapped Seating
Main grandstand

Personal Coolers
Coolers are allowed, No Glass Bottles

Alcohol Sales
Beer is for sale at the track

Smoking Policy
No smoking in the grandstands

Parking Cost

Camping Availability

Camping Cost
Reserved: $75 for the weekend; Drive up/Non-reserved camping: $80 for the weekend; Tent Camping: $15 per day

Track Info  

Talladega Short Track
4343 Speedway Blvd
Eastaboga, Alabama 36260 

Track Phone
(256) 831-1413

Track Size

Track Type
High-banked, red clay oval

Late Model Track Record
12.420 sec. by Jason Hiett on 3/28/19

Track Map
Competitor Info  
Competitor Downloads

Competitor Info

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