Not by choice, the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Cars were locked out of California in 2020.
It was the first year in Series history that The Greatest Show on Dirt did not host a race in the state, and it just felt wrong.
That wrong is being righted this week as the 67th Gold Cup Race of Champions at Silver Dollar Speedway in Chico, CA brings the Outlaws back to the Golden State.
GOLD CUP TICKETS (Fri-Sat)
Some of the top storylines to watch:
CALIFORNIA LOVE: For the first time in two years, Brad Sweet and Carson Macedo are bringing The Greatest Show on Dirt back to their home state. Specifically, this duo leads the charge to Silver Dollar Speedway, the site of monumental moments for both drivers.
Sweet, of Grass Valley, CA, attempted his first of 732 World of Outlaws races at the Chico circuit on September 6, 2003, when The Big Cat was only 17-years-old. Since then, the NorCal kid has grown up to become a two-time champion and sits on the verge of a third championship, and isn’t far from cracking the top-10 of the All-Time Wins List. The driver of the Kasey Kahne Racing, NAPA Auto Parts #49 is a two-time winner at Silver Dollar, but he still chases a breakthrough in the Gold Cup finale.
Macedo, of Lemoore, CA, earned the first two of his 14 career World of Outlaws wins at Silver Dollar. He drove the Tarlton #21 to his career-first in 2014 when he was only 18-years-old. Five years later during his Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year campaign in 2019, he won again in Chico, that time with Kyle Larson Racing. Now, he’s amid his most impressive season yet and heads home this time aboard the Jason Johnson Racing #41.
BIG BREAKTHROUGH: A trio of World of Outlaws stars are looking for their big breakthrough in Chico this week. For David Gravel, Sheldon Haudenschild & Logan Schuchart, they’ve all shown signs of success at the California oval, but have suffered more tough nights than great ones at the bullring.
Gravel has raced at Silver Dollar more than the others, attempting Chico on 16 occasions with only two-top finishes. Before 2019, the Watertown, CT native suffered a rough five-race spell with his best finish in 14th but now returns on the heels of a career-best fourth-place finish at the track during the 66th Gold Cup.
Schuchart, the Series’ most recent winner on Monday at Grays Harbor, has shown a better hand at Silver Dollar of late. He failed to crack the top-five in his first 11 trips to Chico with only three top-10s but has improved with results of sixth, sixth, and a career-best third in 2019.
Haudenschild will compete at Silver Dollar for the eighth time in his career, fresh off a stellar 2019 trip to Gold Cup. The Wooster, OH native struggled with an average finish of 17.8 in his first five nights but has since rattled off career-best runs of fifth and fourth aboard his NOS Energy Drink #17.
GOLDEN BOY: Donny Schatz will return to Silver Dollar Speedway this weekend as the only former winner of the Gold Cup Race of Champions in action. He won the finale in 2004 with his own Schatz Motorsports team, then topped the 40-lap finale again in 2015 with Tony Stewart/Curb-Agajanian Racing.
The 10-time World of Outlaws champion is on a streak of 18 consecutive top-10 finishes as the Ford Performance, Carquest #15 has come to life this summer. He’ll look to keep the momentum going as he closes in on Macedo in the battle for third in the championship standings.
LOUIE LAYOVER: Last week the Louie Vermeil Classic overtook Silver Dollar Speedway with the King of the West NARC 410 Sprint Cars hosting two days of racing. A pair of California’s finest ended up winning the two Features, and those two will enter this weekend as potential candidates to upset the Outlaws with a first-carer win.
Dominic Scelzi, a former DIRTVision color commentator, has returned from the road and competes full-time in California now. The Fresno native has made 2021 the greatest season of his career, going on a surreal winning spree throughout the Golden State. Giovanni’s older brother has his best shot ever at winning an Outlaw Feature this weekend.
Justin Sanders of Prunedale, CA won Sunday’s finale and is expected to drive to the Kevin Kozlowski owned #57 with Paul Silva, fresh off a Kings Royal and Knoxville Nationals title, on the wrenches for him. Sanders’ greatest Outlaw run came right at Silver Dollar Speedway in 2017 when he started pole, led 11 laps, and ultimately finished second to Shane Stewart.
FIRST-TIME WINNERS: Silver Dollar Speedway’s 1/4-mile bullring stands out as a wildcard on the World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series schedule. The Chico, CA oval has produced six different first-time winners, third-most of all tracks behind only Williams Grove and Eldora. Over the last decade, no track has seen as many first-time winners (five since 2011) as Silver Dollar.
1987 – Dave Bradway Jr. (Roseville, CA)
2011 – Kyle Larson (Elk Grove, CA)
2012 – Sean Becker (Oroville, CA)
2014 – Carson Macedo (Lemoore, CA)
2014 – Jonathan Allard (Chico, CA)
2017 – Kyle Hirst (Paradise, CA)
PARITY PREVAILS: It’s been anyone’s game over the past two weeks with the World of Outlaws. Entering California, the Series is on a streak of six different winners in six races.
Donny Schatz started the streak with his first I-80 Speedway win and then Sheldon Haudenschild followed him with a Black Hills Speedway triumph. Four straight nights in Washington ensued with James McFadden, Brad Sweet, Carson Macedo, and Logan Schuchart all earning their first wins at Skagit, then Grays Harbor for Schuchart.
Two nights at Silver Dollar could easily extend the streak, as they approach the season record of 10 straight different winners.
ROOKIE RUN: The west coast swing presents a slew of new challenges for Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year contenders James McFadden and Brock Zearfoss. They both visited Washington’s Skagit Speedway and Grays Harbor Raceway for the first time last week, finding success with a win for McFadden and several top-10s for Zearfoss. This week, the Australian and Pennsylvanian will each make their debut at Chico’s Silver Dollar Speedway.
This Week at a Glance – When and Where
Friday-Saturday, September 10-11 at Silver Dollar Speedway in Chico, CA
On the Internet
World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series
Twitter – @WorldofOutlaws
Instagram – @WoOSprint
Facebook – Facebook.com/WorldofOutlawsSprintCarSeries
YouTube – Youtube.com/WorldofOutlaws
DIRTVision – DIRTVision.com – Platinum annual FAST PASS for $299 or monthly FAST PASS for $39/month
Around the Turn: Next weekend, the west coast swing wraps up for the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series with a one-night stop at Hanford, CA’s Keller Auto Speedway. A $21,000-to-win battle awaits The Greatest Show on Dirt at the Tom Tarlton Classic.
NOS ENERGY DRINK FEATURE WINNERS (14 Drivers):
16 wins – Brad Sweet, Kasey Kahne Racing w/ Mike Curb #49
8 wins – David Gravel, Big Game Motorsports #2
8 wins – Sheldon Haudenschild, Stenhouse Jr. Marshall Racing #17
8 wins – Carson Macedo, Jason Johnson Racing #41
4 wins – Logan Schuchart, Shark Racing #1S
4 wins – Aaron Reutzel, Roth Motorsports #83
3 wins – Kyle Larson, Silva Motorsports #57
3 wins – Donny Schatz, Tony Stewart/Curb-Agajanian Racing #15
2 wins – Kerry Madsen, Tony Stewart/Curb-Agajanian Racing #14
2 wins – Brent Marks, Brent Marks Racing #19
2 wins – James McFadden, Kasey Kahne Racing w/ Mike Curb #9
1 win – Dave Blaney, Dave Blaney #10
1 win – Spencer Bayston, Sam McGhee Motorsports #11
1 win – Tyler Courtney, Clauson-Marshall Racing #7BC
FEATURE LAPS LED (27 Drivers):
306 laps – Brad Sweet
292 laps – Sheldon Haudenschild
260 laps – Carson Macedo
210 laps – David Gravel
208 laps – Logan Schuchart
201 laps – Donny Schatz
188 laps – Aaron Reutzel
72 laps – Kyle Larson
66 laps – James McFadden
63 laps – Kerry Madsen
57 laps – Tyler Courtney
33 laps – Spencer Bayston
29 laps – Giovanni Scelzi
27 laps – Brent Marks, Sam Hafertepe Jr.
13 laps – Wayne Johnson
11 laps – Sye Lynch
10 laps – Jacob Allen, Brock Zearfoss, Parker Price-Miller
9 laps – Austin McCarl
3 laps – Ian Madsen
1 lap – Kasey Kahne, Kraig Kinser, Brandon Spithaler, Dave Blaney, Brian Brown
SLICK WOODY’S QUICKTIME AWARDS (21 Drivers):
14 QuickTimes – David Gravel
7 QuickTimes – Sheldon Haudenschild
6 QuickTimes – Logan Schuchart
5 QuickTimes – Brad Sweet
4 QuickTimes – Kerry Madsen
3 QuickTimes – Carson Macedo, Aaron Reutzel
2 QuickTimes – James McFadden, Donny Schatz, Kasey Kahne, Cory Eliason, Giovanni Scelzi, Parker Price-Miller, Sam Hafertepe Jr.
1 QuickTime – Kraig Kinser, Danny Dietrich, Anthony Macri, Brian Brown, Brock Zearfoss, Rico Abreu, Sye Lynch
DRYDENE HEAT RACE WINNERS (39 Drivers)
28 Heat Wins – David Gravel
26 Heat Wins – Carson Macedo
19 Heat Wins – Donny Schatz
16 Heat Wins – Aaron Reutzel
15 Heat Wins – Sheldon Haudenschild
14 Heat Wins – Brad Sweet
13 Heat Wins – Logan Schuchart
10 Heat Wins – James McFadden
7 Heat Wins – Brian Brown
5 Heat Wins – Kraig Kinser, Kerry Madsen
4 Heat Wins – Brock Zearfoss, Giovanni Scelzi, Tyler Courtney
3 Heat Wins – Jason Sides, Wayne Johnson, Ian Madsen, Anthony Macri, Sam Hafertepe Jr.
2 Heat Wins – Jacob Allen, Kasey Kahne, Kyle Larson, DJ Netto, Parker Price-Miller
1 Heat Win – Danny Dietrich, Hunter Schuerenberg, Lance Dewease, Brandon Spithaler, Tim Kaeding, Jack Dover, Scotty Thiel, Paul McMahan, Daryn Pittman, Justin Peck, Jac Haudenschild, Sye Lynch, Chad Trout, TJ Stutts, Brent Marks
PODIUM FINISHES (27 Drivers):
30 Podiums – Brad Sweet
22 Podiums – Carson Macedo
20 Podiums – David Gravel, Donny Schatz, Sheldon Haudenschild
14 Podiums – Logan Schuchart
10 Podiums – Aaron Reutzel
9 Podiums – James McFadden
6 Podiums – Kerry Madsen, Brent Marks
5 Podiums – Giovanni Scelzi
3 Podiums – Brian Brown, Lance Dewease, Kyle Larson
2 Podiums – Kraig Kinser, Cory Eliason, Anthony Macri, Danny Dietrich, Tyler Courtney
1 Podium – Jacob Allen, Justin Peck, Brian Brown, Anthony Macri, Dave Blaney, Spencer Bayston, Daryn Pittman, Paulie Colagiovanni, Austin McCarl, Sam Hafertepe Jr.
2021 World of Outlaws Sprint Car Schedule & Winners
No. / Day, Date / Track / Location / Winner (Total Wins)
1. Fri, Feb. 5 / Volusia Speedway Park / Barberville, FL / Brad Sweet (1)
2. Sun, Feb. 7 / Volusia Speedway Park / Barberville, FL / Logan Schuchart (1)
3. Fri, March 5 / Volusia Speedway Park / Barberville, FL / Carson Macedo (1)
4. Sat, March 6 / East Bay Raceway Park / Tampa, FL / Aaron Reutzel (1)
5. Fri, March 12 / Magnolia Motor Speedway / Columbus, MS / Sheldon Haudenschild (1)
6. Sat, March 13 / The Rev / Monroe, LA / David Gravel (1)
7. Fri, March 19 / Cotton Bowl Speedway / Paige, TX / Sheldon Haudenschild (2)
8. Sat, March 20 / Cotton Bowl Speedway / Paige, TX / Brad Sweet (2)
9. Sat, March 27 / Lake Ozark Speedway / Eldon, MO / Brad Sweet (3)
10. Fri, April 2 / I-55 Raceway / Pevely, MO / Brad Sweet (4)
11. Sat, April 3 / I-55 Raceway / Pevely, MO / Brad Sweet (5)
12. Fri, April 9 / Kokomo Speedway / Kokomo, IN / James McFadden (1)
13. Sat, April 10 / Tri-State Speedway / Haubstadt, IN / Carson Macedo (2)
14. Fri, April 22 / Bristol Motor Speedway / Bristol, TN / David Gravel (2)
15. Sun, April 24 / Bristol Motor Speedway / Bristol, TN / David Gravel (3)
16. Thur, April 29 / Jacksonville Speedway / Jacksonville, IL / Brad Sweet (6)
17. Fri, April 30 / I-70 Motorsports Park / Odessa, MO / Brad Sweet (7)
18. Sat, May 1 / I-70 Motorsports Park / Odessa, MO / Brad Sweet (8)
19. Sat, May 8 / Eldora Speedway / Rossburg, OH / Brent Marks (1)
20. Sat, May 8 / Eldora Speedway / Rossburg, OH / Sheldon Haudenschild (3)
21. Wed, May 12 / Lincoln Speedway / Abbottstown, PA / Brad Sweet (9)
22. Fri, May 14 / Williams Grove Speedway / Mechanicsburg, PA / Carson Macedo (3)
23. Sat, May 15 / Williams Grove Speedway / Mechanicsburg, PA / Aaron Reutzel (2)
24. Tues, May 18 / Bridgeport Speedway / Swedesboro, NJ / Logan Schuchart (2)
25. Fri, May 21 / Attica Raceway Park / Attica, OH / David Gravel (4)
26. Sat, May 22 / Sharon Speedway / Hartford, OH / Dave Blaney (1)
27. Mon, May 31 / Lawrenceburg Speedway / Lawrenceburg, IN / Kyle Larson (1)
28. Sat, June 5 / Granite City Speedway /Sauk Rapids, MN / David Gravel (5)
29. Fri, June 11 / Knoxville Raceway / Knoxville, IA / Carson Macedo (4)
30. Sat, June 12 / Knoxville Raceway / Knoxville, IA / Carson Macedo (5)
31. Thur, June 17 / 34 Raceway / West Burlington, IA / Brad Sweet (10)
32. Fri, June 18 / Dubuque Fairgrounds Speedway / Dubuque, IA / Donny Schatz (1)
33. Sat, June 19 / Beaver Dam Raceway / Beaver Dam, WI / Sheldon Haudenschild (4)
34. Mon, June 21 / Huset’s Speedway / Brandon, SD / David Gravel (6)
35. Tues, June 22 / Huset’s Speedway / Brandon, SD / Aaron Reutzel (3)
36. Thur, June 24 / Jackson Motorplex / Jackson, MN / Kerry Madsen (1)
37. Fri, June 25 / Jackson Motorplex / Jackson, MN / Kerry Madsen (2)
38. Sat, June 27 / Jackson Motorplex / Jackson, MN / Logan Schuchart (3)
39. Fri, July 2 / Cedar Lake Speedway / New Richmond, WI / Brad Sweet (11)
40. Sat, July 3 / Cedar Lake Speedway / New Richmond, WI / Brad Sweet (12)
41. Sat, July 10 / Wilmot Raceway / Wilmot, WI / Brad Sweet (13)
42. Tues, July 13 / Attica Raceway Park / Attica, OH / Spencer Bayston (1)
43. Wed, July 14 / Eldora Speedway / Rossburg, OH / Carson Macedo (6)
44. Sat, July 17 / Eldora Speedway / Rossburg, OH / Tyler Courtney (1)
45. Sat, July 17 / Eldora Speedway / Rossburg, OH / Kyle Larson (2)
46. Sun, July 18 / Eldora Speedway / Rossburg, OH / Carson Macedo (7)
47. Tues, July 20 / Lernerville Speedway / Sarver, PA / Brad Sweet (14)
48. Fri, July 23 / Williams Grove Speedway / Mechanicsburg, PA / Sheldon Haudenschild (5)
49. Sat, July 24 / Williams Grove Speedway / Mechanicsburg, PA / Brent Marks (2)
50. Fri, July 30 / Ransomville Speedway / Ransomville, NY / Aaron Reutzel (4)
51. Sat, July 31 / Weedsport Speedway / Weedsport, NY / David Gravel (7)
52. Fri, August 6 / I-55 Raceway / Pevely, MO / Sheldon Haudenschild (6)
53. Sat, August 7 / I-55 Raceway / Pevely, MO / Sheldon Haudenschild (7)
54. Sat, August 14 / Knoxville Raceway / Knoxville, IA / Kyle Larson (3)
55. Sat, August 21 / Red River Valley Speedway / Fargo, ND / Donny Schatz (2)
56. Sun, August 22 / Huset’s Speedway / Brandon, SD / David Gravel (8)
57. Wed, August 25 / River Cites Speedway / Grand Forks, ND / Brad Sweet (15)
58. Fri, August 27 / I-80 Speedway / Greenwood, NE / Donny Schatz (3)
59. Sun, August 29 / Black Hills Speedway / Rapid City, SD / Sheldon Haudenschild (8)
60. Fri, September 3 / Skagit Speedway / Alger, WA / James McFadden (2)
61. Sat, September 4 / Skagit Speedway / Alger, WA / Brad Sweet (16)
62. Sun, September 5 / Skagit Speedway / Alger, WA / Carson Macedo (8)
63. Mon, September 6 / Grays Harbor Raceway / Elma, WA / Logan Schuchart (4)