Tony Stewart Racing Continues Championship Chase Through Kansas
INDIANAPOLIS (June 28, 2012) – Through the first five months of the 2012 World of Outlaws (WoO) Sprint Car Series season, the nightly results have been anything but predictable. Foreseeing Tony Stewart Racing’s (TSR) Steve Kinser and Donny Schatz at or near the top of the championship standings wouldn’t have been a huge gamble and, so far, each has spent time holding down the top position. Kinser and Schatz will continue his battle for Outlaw supremacy this weekend through middle America with stops at the Belleville (Kan.) High Banks and Lakeside Speedway in Kansas City, Kan.
Schatz, the four-time WoO champion, leads the series in KSE Hard Charger Awards this season driving the TSR No. 15 STP/Armor All/Chevrolet J&J and has finished inside the top-eight in each of the last eight races. Last season, Schatz raced from a sixth-row starting position and into the top-five in his debut at Belleville. A blown left-rear tire ended his bid at a podium finish, but he was able to rejoin the field and earn a seventh-place finish. The Fargo, N.D., racer is still seeking his first triumph at Lakeside, where his best finish was third in 2003. Last June, he started fourth and climbed to third early in the race before finishing sixth in the 30-lap A-Feature.
Last weekend, Schatz raced from mid-pack both nights in Dodge City, racing from 13th to fifth in the opener and from 14th to eighth Saturday to earn his series-best 25th top-10 finish of the campaign.
Friday at Belleville High Banks, the grandstands open at 4 p.m. CDT. Hot laps are scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m. For more details, contact the SLS Promotions at (815) 344-2023 or visit the tracks’s official Web site at www.HighBanks.org.
Lakeside Speedway will open the grandstands at 4 p.m. CDT Saturday. Qualifying is scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m. For more details, contact the SLS Promotions at (815) 344-2023 or visit the track’s official Web site at www.LakesideSpeedway.net.
Race fans unable to attend this weekend’s races can catch all of the action on DIRTVision.com. Fans can listen live as Johnny Gibson, “Voice of the Outlaws,” calls the action as he does at all WoO Sprint Series events on the DIRTVision.com cybercast, as well as on the DIRT Radio Network. Go to www.DIRTVision.com for more information on all the site features, including updated results from each night of racing, as well as a chat room to interact with other race fans.
Donny Schatz, Driver of the No. 15 TSR/STP/Armor All/Chevrolet J&J:
Last June, you raced at Belleville for the first time. What do you remember most about that experience?
“I remember having a pretty good race going there and then we had a flat. It’s one of those momentum tracks and, even though most of the time you had to be right up on the bank using all the horsepower you had, there were times when you could drop down a line and maybe get by someone. It was fun to go there and we’re looking forward to going back. We’d like to start our nights a little better and not bury ourselves so far in the field for the features. We’re all working on it and I’d be happy to have a really good night and leave there with some positive results heading toward Lakeside.”
Winning races has always been the key to winning championships. You have been stuck on three wins for almost two months, yet you’ve still been right in the thick of the points chase. Is there anything positive you can take away from that as you look at the big picture?
“We’ve had some pretty good nights since winning at Farmer City (Ill.), but simply haven’t had things go our way. We’ve had our seconds, thirds and top-fives, but we haven’t put it all together. I always felt like getting that first win of the year is the hardest and this year we got it in the second race. We need to break through and get another one. The STP guys are working really hard and I’m doing all I can from my seat to get us back in victory lane. The points deal is going to be wide open until someone starts winning regularly. I just hope we can be that team.”