We checked out the East Coast and the “Corn Coast” of Indiana, now it’s off to the Northern Tour.
This weekend, the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series visits North Dakota and Minnesota for the first time this season as a busy month of June begins for The Greatest Show on Dirt.
Up first, we’re heading to Schatz-ville AKA River Cities Speedway in Grand Forks, ND on Friday, June 4. It’s a track that 10-time Series champion Donny Schatz has mastered, and a track where he’d love to claim a monumental milestone victory at.
Following that, the Outlaws return to Granite City Speedway in Sauk Rapids, MN on Saturday, June 5. Defending champion and current points leader Brad Sweet is the most recent winner at the track, but his Kasey Kahne Racing #49 has been feeling the heat from David Gravel and Carson Macedo lately.
They’re two tracks proven to produce epic racing when the traveling Outlaws come to town.
Here are some of the top storylines to follow this weekend:
HOME SWEET HOME: For the first time this season, Fargo’s Donny Schatz heads home to his native state of North Dakota. The 10-time Series champion leads the World of Outlaws to River Cities Speedway in Grand Forks, ND on Friday night for the first of three appearances in The Peace Garden State in 2021.
Over his 25 seasons as a full-time World of Outlaws driver, Schatz has ruled River Cities like none other. Out of 26 trips to the 3/10-mile oval, Schatz has won 12 of them. That’s a stunning 46% winning percentage when it comes to his home track. It’s also the site of his first-ever Sprint Car win from back in 1994.
The stage is set perfectly for Schatz to contend for his first win of the World of Outlaws season at the Grand Forks facility, located just over an hour from his Fargo residence. On Saturday, the Series heads to Granite City (MN) Speedway where Schatz has taken two of four Features contested at the track.
“BEST DIRT TRACK”: Previously, River Cities Speedway proudly boasted the @BestDirtTrack handle on their Twitter account. The Grand Forks, ND faithful love their racing and will stick to their guns that they’ve got one of the best tracks in the whole country. World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series Announcer Johnny Gibson agrees, calling it his personal favorite.
Watch just about any World of Outlaws show at River Cities and you’ll quickly see why. Need a quick example? Take a look at last year’s trip to the bullring. Kyle Larson stole the win from Logan Schuchart in the final corner, a move that stunned the entirety of everyone in attendance and those watching on DIRTVision.
EVERY POINT MATTERS: There’s no playoff and no chase when it comes to the World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series. It’s a grind of 80+ races from February to November, meaning every single race and every single point matters on every single night. With that pressure comes the importance of not only minimizing your losses, but also capitalizing on your opponents mistakes.
Brad Sweet, who currently leads the points in pursuit of his third-straight championship, is coming off a whirlwind night at Lawrenceburg (IN) Speedway on Monday. The Kasey Kahne Racing, NAPA Auto Parts #49 crashed big in Heat Race competition and rolled out the backup. They salvaged their night with a 24th-to-7th charge and extended their points lead through 27 of 83 races.
Opposite of Sweet is Big Game Motorsports #2 driver David Gravel (-66) and Jason Johnson Racing #41 pilot Carson Macedo (-90). Both combatants have taken advantage of Sweet’s rough six-race streak (8.3 average finish) and narrowed the gap. They’ll get another shot on Friday night at River Cities, where Sweet has never won, but then it’s on to Granite City where The Big Cat is the most recent victor.
TURNING OF THE TIDE: It’s been a tale of two streaks for Logan Schuchart and Aaron Reutzel. Since the Series left Williams Grove, where Schuchart suffered a massive crash and Reutzel took down the $15,000 Morgan Cup, both of their fortunes have reversed.
Schuchart, who earlier this season led the points until a rough spell hit the Shark Racing #1S, has since rebounded with five-straight top-ten finishes including his second win at Bridgeport and a second-place run at Lawrenceburg.
For Reutzel, it’s been the exact opposite. He’s been consistent all year in the Roth Motorsports #83, but since his Williams Grove win has experienced his worst four-race run of the year. Accidents at Bridgeport, Attica, Sharon & Lawrenceburg has sent the Clute, TX native falling from fourth-to-seventh in the points.
BUCKLE UP: This weekend’s Northern Tour is only the beginning of a massive month of June. A total of 12 nights of racing await The Greatest Show on Dirt this month. Following River Cities and Granite City, the Outlaws visit Knoxville (IA) Raceway for the first time this season.
A triple-header at 34, Dubuque & Beaver Dam from June 17-19 then leads into THE SHOWDOWN, a weeklong affair with more than $600,000 on the line in the Huset’s 50 (June 21-22) and the Jackson Nationals (June 24-26).
This Week at a Glance – When and Where
Friday, May 28 at Terre Haute Action Track in Terre Haute, IN
Monday, May 31 at Lawrenceburg Speedway in Lawrenceburg, IN
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: Following this weekend, the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series will roll northwest to visit River Cities Speedway in Grand Forks, ND on Friday, June 4, then Granite City Speedway in Sauk Rapids, MN on Saturday, June 5.
NOS ENERGY DRINK FEATURE WINNERS (10 Drivers):
9 wins – Brad Sweet, Kasey Kahne Racing w/ Mike Curb #49
4 wins – David Gravel, Big Game Motorsports #2
3 wins – Sheldon Haudenschild, Stenhouse Jr. Marshall Racing #17
3 wins – Carson Macedo, Jason Johnson Racing #41
2 wins – Aaron Reutzel, Roth Motorsports #83
2 wins – Logan Schuchart, Shark Racing #1S
1 win – James McFadden, Kasey Kahne Racing w/ Mike Curb #9
1 win – Brent Marks, Brent Marks Racing #19M
1 win – Dave Blaney, Dave Blaney #10
1 win – Kyle Larson, Paul Silva #57
FEATURE LAPS LED (19 Drivers):
202 laps – Brad Sweet
151 laps – Sheldon Haudenschild
91 laps – Aaron Reutzel
89 laps – Donny Schatz
88 laps – David Gravel
68 laps – Logan Schuchart
47 laps – Carson Macedo
31 laps – James McFadden
27 laps – Sam Hafertepe Jr.
25 laps – Kyle Larson
19 laps – Tyler Courtney
17 laps – Brent Marks
10 laps – Jacob Allen & Brock Zearfoss
3 laps – Ian Madsen
1 lap – Kasey Kahne, Kraig Kinser, Brandon Spithaler, Dave Blaney
SLICK WOODY’S QUICKTIME AWARDS (12 Drivers):
7 QuickTimes – David Gravel
4 QuickTimes – Sheldon Haudenschild
2 QuickTimes – Brad Sweet, James McFadden, Aaron Reutzel, Logan Schuchart, Cory Eliason, Sam Hafertepe Jr.
1 QuickTime – Carson Macedo, Danny Dietrich, Anthony Macri, Giovanni Scelzi
DRYDENE HEAT RACE WINNERS (24 Drivers)
13 Heat Wins – David Gravel
10 Heat Wins – Aaron Reutzel
9 Heat Wins – Carson Macedo
8 Heat Wins – Sheldon Haudenschild
6 Heat Wins – James McFadden, Logan Schuchart
5 Heat Wins – Donny Schatz
3 Heat Wins – Brock Zearfoss, Ian Madsen, Brian Brown, Giovanni Scelzi, Sam Hafertepe Jr.
2 Heat Wins – Jacob Allen, Kasey Kahne, Kraig Kinser, Jason Sides, Brad Sweet, Kyle Larson
1 Heat Win – Danny Dietrich, Hunter Schuerenberg, Tyler Courtney, Lance Dewease, Anthony Macri, Brandon Spithaler
PODIUM FINISHES (21 Drivers):
14 Podiums – Brad Sweet
8 Podiums – Carson Macedo, Sheldon Haudenschild
7 Podiums – Donny Schatz, Logan Schuchart
6 Podiums – Aaron Reutzel, David Gravel
5 Podiums – Brent Marks
3 Podiums – James McFadden, Giovanni Scelzi
2 Podiums – Cory Eliason, Lance Dewease, Anthony Macri
1 Podium – Kraig Kinser, Danny Dietrich, Tyler Courtney, Justin Peck, Brian Brown, Anthony Macri, Dave Blaney, Kyle Larson, 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)