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Friday March 24th, 2017 11:58AM

Donny Schatz slips by for WoO Sprints win at Las Vegas

By Brendan Capria
  Contact Editor

LAS Vegas, Nev. - It took a photo finish, but Donny Schatz took the victory at The Dirt Track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Thursday night, for the World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series.

Schatz earned his 10th career series win at the track by just a 0.046-second margin over Brian Brown, earning a $15,000 payday in the process.

“If it wasn’t for this Stewart-Curb Racing team, we wouldn’t be up here so hats off to them,” said Schatz with his team looking-on in victory lane. “They worked their tails off all winter long and it’s getting better.”

Schatz started the 26-lap feature in fourth position, and used a series of restarts to gain ground on each of the podium spots ahead of him. When the green flag dropped, he made his move into the podium and had his sights set on second.

Schatz contested for the runner-up spot in the opening laps, challenging Brown from the bottom. Brown shut down his advances exiting turn 1 for the first three laps until a red flag reset the field. Shane Stewart, who led the 25-car field into the green flag, got tangled-up in lapped traffic entering turn two of the sixth lap. The aftermath of the wreck forced Stewart to forfeit the top spot, bumping the field up by one position. From there, Schatz targeted Brown for the lead.

It only took one lap for Schatz to wedge his racecar underneath Brown’s car in turn two. Schatz widened the gap to nearly one-second over Brown, while Jason Johnson moved into the final podium spot by lap 16. A red flag on that lap regrouped the field yet again.

Several battles transpired on the restart, as Brown challenged Schatz for the lead from the bottom, and Johnson and Ian Madsen rubbed tires barreling out of the front-stretch. While Johnson was successful, Brown was not as he was penalized for an early start and was docked one position. The field regrouped for the race’s third restart with Schatz and Johnson – the only two to win a feature event in 2017 – side-by-side in the first row.

In the closing laps, Schatz built a cushion – that did not last. Brown reclaimed second position over Johnson within the final 10 laps of the feature. The race’s final caution extended the 25-lap feature by one lap by virtue of a green-white-checkered. In the final lap, Brown launched his car to the outside of Schatz. The two barreled down the front-stretch to the checkers, and it was Schatz by a nose.

Rico Abreu finished in third, with Johnson in fourth and Logan Schuchart in fifth.

For more information on the World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series, visit WoOSprint.com.

World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series
The Dirt Track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway – Las Vegas, NV
Race Results – March 9, 2017

1. 15-Donny Schatz
2. 21-Brian Brown
3. 24R-Rico Abreu
4. 41-Jason Johnson
5. 1S-Logan Schuchart
6. 18-Ian Madsen
7. 11K-Kraig Kinser
8. 2M-Kerry Madsen
9. 2-Shane Stewart
10. 93-Sheldon Haudenschild
11. 49-Brad Sweet
12. 17-Joey Saldana
13. 19-Brent Marks
14. 9-Daryn Pittman
15. 73-Brady Bacon
16. 5-David Gravel
17. W20-Greg Wilson
18. 21X-Carson Macedo
19. 17B-Josh Baughman
20. 4-Paul McMahan
21. 87-Aaron Reutzel
22. 7S-Jason Sides
23. 41X-Dominic Scelzi
24. 24-Terry McCarl
25. 13JT-Mark Dobmeier

  • Associated Categories: NASCAR News, Other Motorsports
  • Associated Tags: motorsports, Open Wheel, Auto Racing, Sprint Car, Dirt Track, Short Track, WoO
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