The Greatest Show on Dirt takes on the tricky D-shaped New York oval – located 30 minutes from Syracuse – for a Saturday-Sunday doubleheader (July 29-30), boasting a more than $134,000 overall purse.
Adding to the Series’ Summer of Money, the Empire State Challenge’s increased purse will see drivers battling for a $10,000 payday on Saturday and a $20,000 payday on Sunday – also paying $1,500 to start.
The extra money and Series’ tight points battle promises to ramp up the racing intensity as the Series makes its lone New York trip of the season.
Let’s look at the weekend’s top storylines:
BACK AND FORTH: This season continues to produce one of the most competitive championship fights in World of Outlaws history with David Gravel and Brad Sweet currently tied for the lead. Last week in Pennsylvania provided the seventh and eighth lead changes of the year and with the current tie, we could be in store for an eighth lead change at Weedsport – if not more.
Gravel entered last week ahead, lost the lead during the second of three races, and then regained it by virtue of a tie breaker as he and Sweet left Pennsylvania with the same number of points.
Gravel continues to pursue his first Series title while Sweet is chasing a fifth straight with his Kasey Kahne Racing crew.
WEEDSPORT WINNERS: Only two current full-time World of Outlaws drivers have been to Victory Lane, and they’re both multi-time winners at the 3/8-mile.
Donny Schatz is tied as the winningest driver at Weedsport in Series competition. In six starts, the 10-time champion has claimed half of his visits. The driver of the Tony Stewart/Curb Agajanian Racing #15 enters this week as the most recent winner at the facility. Steve Kinser is the only other driver to have topped a trio of Weedsport races. Together, Schatz and “The King” have combined to win half of the World of Outlaws’ 12 trips. Schatz has also been wildly consistent through all of his attempts with a 2.3 average finish at Weedsport.
David Gravel, who has also snagged a Weedsport checkered flag will look to equal the record established by Schatz and Kinser. The Watertown, CT native is a two-time Weedsport victor, topping back-to-back races from 2021 to 2022. Like Schatz, Gravel has made six Series starts and only missed the top five once.
One more former World of Outlaws Weedsport winner is expected to be in attendance though he’s not an active full-timer. Dave Blaney plans to make the haul from Ohio for two nights in New York. The “Buckeye Bullet” topped the 1993 visit to Weedsport for one of his 15 victories that season. Blaney hasn’t visited the track since a 2019 All-Star Circuit of Champions race.
MOVIN’ UP: Giovanni Scelzi took another step during his impressive rookie World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car campaign last week. The Fresno, CA native climbed from seventh to sixth in points. When he began his inaugural campaign, he stated his and KCP Racing’s hopes were a top five in the standings, and he’s now only a spot away.
After a rough start to the season in Florida, the 21-year-old has been one of the most consistent drivers of the season. He’s currently tied for the fifth most top 10s with 29 to his credit and has qualified for the Toyota Racing Dash fifth most often with 18 appearances. On top of his general consistency, Scelzi has also been to Victory Lane with a Beaver Dam win last month.
This week he’ll tackle Weedsport for the first time looking to move even closer toward that goal of the top five in points.
SHARK WEEK: The Shark Racing teammates – Logan Schuchart and Jacob Allen – will be looking for a strong showing during the annual week that celebrates the fierce, aquatic animals that their team is named after.
Schuchart heads to New York with some momentum courtesy of two podiums last week in Pennsylvania including a win at Williams Grove. The Hanover, PA native has never won at Weedsport but has been close with three top fives highlighted by a 2016 runner-up.
Like his teammate, Allen is yet to park in Weedsport Victory Lane but been banging on the door. Allen owns a pair of top fives in six starts with a best effort of third in 2018.
NEW YORK KNOWLEDGE: Over the last few years, a handful of locals have asserted themselves as consistent contenders whenever the World of Outlaws invade Weedsport.
Paulie Colagiovanni leads the way among the local contingent. The Cicero, NY native owns a pair of podiums in 14 career Series appearances – both of which have come in his home state. Back in 2021, he finished second at Ransomville Speedway. Last year he ran third at Weedsport. Colagiovanni is already a three-time winner this year with the Empire Super 360 Sprints (ESS).
It’s also become common for Super DIRTcar Series Big Block Modified drivers to jump behind the wheel of a Sprint Car at Weedsport. The 2018 Super DIRT Week champ – Larry Wight – brought home a pair of top 10s during last year’s Empire State Challenge including his best career Series finish (sixth) on the second night. Last year the Phoenix, NY native won at Weedsport with ESS.
More locals to watch include Danny Varin (Sharon Springs, NY), Denny Peebles (Lowman, NY), Davie Franek (Sussex, NJ), and more.
If you can’t make it to the track, catch all of the action on DIRTVision.
THIS WEEKEND AT A GLANCE
WHEN AND WHERE
Saturday-Sunday, July 29-30 at Weedsport Speedway in Weedsport, NY
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
CURRENT CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS (43/79 Races):
1. 2 – David Gravel (5772PTS) 2. 49 – Brad Sweet (-0PTS) 3. 41 – Carson Macedo (-44PTS) 4. 1S – Logan Schuchart (-212PTS) 5. 17 – Sheldon Haudenschild (-276PTS) 6. 18 – Gio Scelzi (-308PTS) 7. 15 – Donny Schatz (-318PTS) 8. 5 – Spencer Bayston (-440PTS) 9. 3Z – Brock Zearfoss (-798PTS) 10. 1A – Jacob Allen (-837PTS)
NOS ENERGY DRINK FEATURE WINNERS (13 Drivers):
9 wins – David Gravel (Big Game Motorsports #2)
6 wins – Brad Sweet (Kasey Kahne Racing #49)
5 wins – Carson Macedo (Jason Johnson Racing #41)
4 wins – James McFadden (Roth Motorsports #83), Rico Abreu (Rico Abreu Racing #24)
3 wins – Donny Schatz (Tony Stewart/Curb Agajanian Racing #15), Logan Schuchart (Shark Racing #1S)
2 wins –Sheldon Haudenschild (Stenhouse Jr.-Marshall Racing #17), Kyle Larson (Silva Motorsports #57)
1 win – Buddy Kofoid (CMS Racing #11), Brady Bacon (TKH Motorsports #21), Anthony Macri (Macri Motorsports #39), Brian Brown (Brian Brown Racing #21), Gio Scelzi (KCP Racing #18)
FEATURE LAPS LED (18 Drivers):
219 laps – Brad Sweet
187 laps – Carson Macedo
174 laps – Rico Abreu
161 laps – David Gravel
133 laps – James McFadden
96 laps – Donny Schatz
93 laps – Buddy Kofoid
81 laps – Logan Schuchart
70 laps – Sheldon Haudenschild
47 laps – Kyle Larson
43 laps – Brent Marks
39 laps – Gio Scelzi
24 laps – Brian Brown
23 laps – Spencer Bayston
11 laps – Anthony Macri
10 laps – Cory Eliason
3 laps – Brady Bacon
1 lap – Austin McCarl
SIMPSON PERFORMANCE PRODUCTS QUICKTIME AWARDS (16 Drivers):
12 QuickTimes – Carson Macedo
7 QuickTimes – David Gravel
5 QuickTimes – Logan Schuchart
2 QuickTimes – Anthony Macri, Rico Abreu, Sheldon Haudenschild, Bill Balog, Justin Peck
1 QuickTime – Brian Brown, Donny Schatz, Buddy Kofoid, Gio Scelzi, James McFadden, Jacob Allen, Kyle Larson, Brad Sweet
HEAT RACE WINNERS (34 Drivers):
25 Heat Wins – Carson Macedo
21 Heat Wins – David Gravel
10 Heat Wins – Donny Schatz, Brad Sweet
9 Heat Wins – Buddy Kofoid, Sheldon Haudenschild
8 Heat Wins – Logan Schuchart, Gio Scelzi
6 Heat Wins – Rico Abreu, James McFadden
5 Heat Wins – Jacob Allen, Spencer Bayston
4 Heat Wins – Brent Marks, Justin Peck
3 Heat Wins – Anthony Macri, Brian Brown, Bill Balog, Parker Price-Miller
2 Heat Wins – Brock Zearfoss, Noah Gass, Kerry Madsen, Cory Eliason
1 Heat Win – Danny Dietrich, Freddie Rahmer, Tim Kaeding, Mark Dobmeier, Kasey Kahne, Austin McCarl, Lachlan McHugh, Ryan Timms, Tim Estenson, Sam Hafertepe Jr., Kyle Larson, Shane Stewart, Lance Dewease
TOYOTA DASH APPEARANCES (36 Drivers):
31 Dashes – Carson Macedo
30 Dashes – David Gravel
26 Dashes – Brad Sweet
21 Dashes – Logan Schuchart
18 Dashes – Gio Scelzi
16 Dashes – Sheldon Haudenschild
15 Dashes – Donny Schatz, Rico Abreu
12 Dashes – James McFadden, Spencer Bayston
9 Dashes – Buddy Kofoid
8 Dashes – Jacob Allen, Brent Marks
6 Dashes – Brock Zearfoss, Cory Eliason
5 Dashes – Anthony Macri, Justin Peck
4 Dashes – Brian Brown
3 Dashes – Danny Dietrich, Robbie Price, Parker Price-Miller, Tyler Courtney
2 Dashes – Garet Williamson, Austin McCarl, Kasey Kahne, Bill Balog, Kyle Larson
1 Dash – Freddie Rahmer, Devon Borden, Aaron Reutzel, Brady Bacon, Chad Trout, Dylan Norris, Cap Henry, Stuart Brubaker, Sam Hafertepe Jr., Shane Stewart
MICROLITE LAST CHANCE SHOWDOWN WINS (29 Drivers):
4 LCS Wins – Sheldon Haudenschild
2 LCS Wins – Robbie Price, Parker Price-Miller, Noah Gass, Logan Schuchart, Spencer Bayston, Carson Macedo
1 LCS Win – Brock Zearfoss, Gio Scelzi, Hunter Schuerenberg, James McFadden, Wayne Johnson, Ryan Timms, Ayrton Gennetten, Kraig Kinser, Freddie Rahmer, Henry Malcuit, Cole Macedo, Tim Estenson, Aaron Reutzel, Kerry Madsen, Sye Lynch, Cory Eliason, Donny Schatz, Tyler Courtney, Rico Abreu, Jacob Allen, Daryn Pittman, Sam Hafertepe Jr.
KSE HARD CHARGER AWARDS (30 Drivers):
4 Hard Chargers – Sheldon Haudenschild
3 Hard Chargers – Tyler Courtney, Brad Sweet, James McFadden
2 Hard Chargers – Brock Zearfoss, Donny Schatz, Logan Schuchart, Danny Dietrich
1 Hard Charger – Gio Scelzi, Robbie Price, David Gravel, Justin Peck, Blake Hahn, Buddy Kofoid, Joe B. Miller, Kyle Larson, Hunter Schuerenberg, Kyle Moody, Freddie Rahmer, Skylar Gee, Cole Duncan, Austin Pierce, Brenham Crouch, Tim Kaeding, Spencer Bayston, Jacob Allen, Caden Englehart, Zeb Wise, Rico Abreu, Carson Macedo
PODIUM FINISHES (22 Drivers):
23 Podiums – David Gravel
19 Podiums – Brad Sweet
13 Podiums – Carson Macedo
11 Podiums – Rico Abreu
9 Podiums – Logan Schuchart
8 Podiums – Donny Schatz
7 Podiums – Sheldon Haudenschild
6 Podiums – Buddy Kofoid
5 Podiums – James McFadden, Brent Marks
4 Podiums – Kyle Larson
3 Podiums – Brian Brown, Jacob Allen, Spencer Bayston
2 Podiums – Gio Scelzi
1 Podium – Danny Dietrich, Kasey Kahne, Devon Borden, Parker Price-Miller, Brady Bacon, Anthony Macri, Garet Williamson
TOP 10 FINISHES (47 Drivers):
38 Top 10s – Carson Macedo, David Gravel
37 Top 10s – Brad Sweet
32 Top 10s – Logan Schuchart
29 Top 10s – Gio Scelzi, Sheldon Haudenschild
27 Top 10s – Spencer Bayston
25 Top 10s – James McFadden
22 Top 10s – Donny Schatz
20 Top 10s – Rico Abreu
16 Top 10s – Buddy Kofoid
14 Top 10s – Jacob Allen
11 Top 10s – Justin Peck, Brent Marks
8 Top 10s – Cory Eliason
7 Top 10s – Tyler Courtney
6 Top 10s – Brian Brown, Kyle Larson, Kasey Kahne, Danny Dietrich
4 Top 10s – Brock Zearfoss
3 Top 10s – Anthony Macri, Bill Balog
2 Top 10s – Aaron Reutzel, Blake Hahn, Brady Bacon, Parker Price-Miller, Robbie Price, Zeb Wise, Freddie Rahmer
1 Top 10 – Devon Borden, Sam Hafertepe Jr., Joe B. Miller, Hunter Schuerenberg, Brandon Rahmer, Chad Trout, Lance Dewease, Cap Henry, Cole Macedo, Stuart Brubaker, Skylar Gee, Cole Duncan, Austin McCarl, Garet Williamson, Tim Kaeding, Chase Randall, Shane Stewart
2023 WORLD OF OUTLAWS SPRINT CAR SCHEDULE & WINNERS:
No. / Day, Date / Track / Location / Winner (Total Wins)
1. Fri, Feb 10 / Volusia Speedway Park / Barberville, FL / David Gravel (1)
2. Fri, Feb 10 / Volusia Speedway Park / Barberville, FL / David Gravel (2)
3. Sat, Feb 11* / Volusia Speedway Park / Barberville, FL / James McFadden (1)
4. Sun, March 5 / Volusia Speedway Park / Barberville, FL / Carson Macedo (1)
5. Mon, March 6 / Volusia Speedway Park / Barberville, FL / David Gravel (3)
6. Sat, March 18 / Lincoln Speedway / Abbottstown, PA / Rico Abreu (1)
7. Fri, March 24 / Talladega Short Track / Eastaboga, AL / Buddy Kofoid (1)
8. Sat, March 25 / Magnolia Motor Speedway / Columbus, MS / Brad Sweet (1)
9. Fri, March 31 / Devil’s Bowl Speedway / Mesquite, TX / Brad Sweet (2)
10. Sat, April 1 / Devil’s Bowl Speedway / Mesquite, TX / James McFadden (2)
11. Fri, April 7 / U.S. 36 Raceway / Osborn, MO / Sheldon Haudenschild (1)
12. Sat, April 8 / 81 Speedway / Wichita, KS / Rico Abreu (2)
13. Fri, April 14 / Federated Auto Parts Raceway at I-55 / Pevely, MO / Brad Sweet (3)
14. Fri, April 28 / Tri-City Speedway / Granite City, IL / David Gravel (4)
15. Sat, April 29 / Tri-State Speedway / Haubstadt, IN / Brady Bacon (1)
16. Fri, May 5 / Eldora Speedway / Rossburg, OH / Logan Schuchart (1)
17. Sat, May 6 / Eldora Speedway / Rossburg, OH / Rico Abreu (3)
18. Wed, May 10 / Lincoln Speedway / Abbottstown, PA / Anthony Macri (1)
19. Fri, May 12 / Williams Grove Speedway / Mechanicsburg, PA / Brad Sweet (4)
20. Fri, May 19 / Attica Raceway Park / Attica, OH / Donny Schatz (1)
21. Sat, May 20 / Sharon Speedway / Hartford, OH / Donny Schatz (2)
22. Fri, May 26 / Atomic Speedway / Chillicothe, OH / Brad Sweet (5)
23. Sat, May 27 / Atomic Speedway / Chillicothe, OH / Carson Macedo (2)
24. Mon, May 29 / Lawrenceburg Speedway / Lawrenceburg, IN / James McFadden (3)
25. Fri, June 2 / River Cities Speedway / Grand Forks, ND / David Gravel (5)
26. Sat, June 3 / Ogilvie Raceway / Ogilvie, MN / Carson Macedo (3)
27. Fri, June 9 / Knoxville Raceway / Knoxville, IA / Brian Brown (1)
28. Sat, June 10 / Knoxville Raceway / Knoxville, IA / David Gravel (6)
29. Fri, June 16 / Beaver Dam Raceway / Beaver Dam, WI / Gio Scelzi (1)
30. Sat, June 17 / Beaver Dam Raceway / Beaver Dam, WI / Sheldon Haudenschild (2)
31. Wed, June 21 / Huset’s Speedway / Brandon, SD / Kyle Larson (1)
32. Thurs, June 22 / Huset’s Speedway / Brandon, SD / James McFadden (4)
33. Fri, June 23 / Huset’s Speedway / Brandon, SD / Logan Schuchart (2)
34. Sat, June 24 / Huset’s Speedway / Brandon, SD / David Gravel (7)
35. Fri, June 30 / Cedar Lake Speedway / New Richmond, WI / Brad Sweet (6)
36. Sat, July 1 / Cedar Lake Speedway / New Richmond, WI / David Gravel (8)
37. Sat, July 8 / Wilmot Raceway / Wilmot, WI / Carson Macedo (4)
38. Tues, July 11 / Attica Raceway Park / Attica, OH / Kyle Larson (2)
39. Fri, July 14 / Eldora Speedway / Rossburg, OH / Carson Macedo (5)
40. Sat, July 15 / Eldora Speedway / Rossburg, OH / Donny Schatz (3)
41. Thurs, July 20 / BAPS Motor Speedway / York Haven, PA / David Gravel (9)
42. Fri, July 21 / Williams Grove Speedway / Mechanicsburg, PA / Logan Schuchart (3)
43. Sat, July 22 / Williams Grove Speedway / Mechanicsburg, PA / Rico Abreu (4)