Redemption for Logan Schuchart; Scelzi Locks in on Hard Knox Night at Knoxville Nationals

By BILL WRIGHT

KNOXVILLE, IA – Logan Schuchart took a big step towards redeeming himself with his first career win at the Knoxville Raceway in Friday’s FVP “Hard Knox” Night at the 58th Annual 5-hour ENERGY Knoxville Nationals. After being disqualified Wednesday for not visiting the scales in a transfer spot, the Hanover, Pennsylvania native won a spirited duel with Brian Brown to claim the win and a guaranteed spot in Saturday night’s $150,000 to win championship event. Brown will join him in the “Big Dance” along with Paul McMahan and Matt Juhl as the top four finishers (full Saturday lineups below).

Schuchart grabbed the early lead in the 25-lap main event, ahead of Brown, McMahan and Sheldon Haudenschild. When Haudenschild got sideways on the second lap, Juhl shot into fourth. On lap five, Brown rode the cushion by Schuchart for the first of four lead changes. The leaders entered lapped traffic on lap eight, and Juhl got by McMahan for third.

Schuchart found his way back to the point in heavy lapped traffic on the tenth circuit before Spencer Bayston got into the turn one wall. Haudenschild grabbed the final transfer from Juhl on the restart, in a battle that was every bit as good as the one for the lead. Juhl would snatch it back at the halfway point.

Brown would recapture the lead with ten to go, but Schuchart would rebound to regain the fore for good a lap later. Both Haudenschild and Jamie Veal pressed Juhl for the coveted fourth position. Haudenschild would shoot by for the spot, but a ride over the inside berm in turn three would give the spot back to Juhl.

Up front, Schuchart pulled away in traffic, and took Brown, McMahan and Juhl with him to Saturday night’s championship event. Haudenschild finished sixth and will start 11th in Saturday’s B. Veal, Sammy Swindell, Davey Heskin, Hunter Schuerenberg and Brent Marks rounded out the top ten. Schuchart and Brown set quick times over their respective groups, while Clint Garner, Don Droud Jr., Josh Schneiderman, Brown, McMahan and Haudenschild won heat races. Sam Hafertepe Jr. and Bayston took the B mains.

“If anyone was going to ask, I know where the scales are now,” said a happy Schuchart in Victory Lane. “My leader of this team (grandfather Bobby Allen who is in the hospital) has taught me its not about how you get knocked down, it’s how you get back up. He’s taught Jacob (Allen) and I since we were young kids if you work hard enough, you can get to where you want to go. He’s the man and a champion. He won this thing in 1990 with little to nothing. He’s my hero, and it’s weird him not being here. It’s the first race my grandpa has not been at since I was about ten years old. I know he’s watching, and he’s proud. He’s got both his cars in the A main tomorrow night.”

“I’ve never been so happy to run second in my life at Knoxville,” said Brown. “Logan…he does a phenomenal job, night in and night out. We were racing so hard. I knew I was using my tires up pretty good. I’m just happy. If you knew what we went through the last forty hours, you would cringe. It shows you to work hard and never give up. We start 18th tomorrow, and I’m ready. After last night, I figured there’d be no way. We had a vibration and figured out what it was.”

“I just can’t thank my guys enough,” said an emotional McMahan. “To be here at Knoxville, and put it in the show, I’m so blessed. Our team is just a bunch of misfits that give me a hell of a racecar every night. My wife’s not here, so that’s hard for me right now. My son and my daughter are here, my mom and dad and my brother are here. We’ve got the whole family here.”

“It’s unbelievable and a dream come true,” said Juhl of his first Knoxville Nationals A main start. “My guys worked their tails off. This is a phenomenal place to come to (and race weekly). I drive five hours every week to come here, and we will keep doing it. It’s awesome to come down here and you get treated so well. It sets you up for the Nationals too.”

Wild World Challenge

The Speed Sport World Challenge was a wild affair that saw Dominic Scelzi earn a “Golden Ticket” as Saturday night’s 25th starter in the Knoxville Nationals championship event. Allan Woods would tip over before a lap could be completed, and when Jordyn Brazier exited, it left just sixteen entries.

Brooke Tatnell led from the pole early over Skylar Gee, Scelzi, James McFadden and Cory Eliason. Scelzi would slide by Gee for second on lap four. McFadden would follow him into third three laps later, before the United Kingdom’s Tom Harris stopped in turn four.

Scelzi would use the restart to slide by Tatnell. McFadden followed him into second, while Austin McCarl moved into fourth. Tatnell would get over the turn one cushion and spin ten laps in. Carson Macedo, Kerry Madsen and Ian Madsen took evasive maneuvers to avoid him, with Ian suffering some right front damage.

Scelzi led McFadden, McCarl, Tim Kaeding and Gee back to green. Kaeding was on the move and used the low side to gain third on the restart. In some great action, McCarl would shoot from fourth to second on lap 12, before McFadden reclaimed the runner-up spot a lap later. On lap fourteen, McCarl and Kaeding put McFadden behind them and battled for second.

Meanwhile, Scelzi was pulling away for his first win here over Kaeding, McCarl, Kerry Madsen and McFadden. Macedo, Gee, Tatnell, Eliason and Terry McCarl rounded out the top ten.

“I’m so out of shape, I’m worn out!” said an excited Scelzi in Victory Lane. “My guys gave me a perfect racecar. We’ve been so good around here all year. I’m speechless. We’re in the show. I’ve been waiting 21 years to say that. Never in a million years did I think I’d win here, especially in front of a Nationals crowd on Friday night. I’ve got so many emotions running through my mind. This is the greatest moment of my life by far!”

The 58th Annual 5-hour ENERGY Knoxville Nationals presented by Casey’s General Stores conclude on Saturday with the $150,000 main event! There are still tickets available for the biggest event in sprint car racing! For more information, visit www.KnoxvilleRaceway.com!

RACE RESULTS

Feature: 25 Laps, 1. Logan Schuchart (1); 2. Brian Brown (2); 3. Paul McMahan (4); 4. Matt Juhl (3); 5. Sheldon Haudenschild (6); 6. Jamie Veal (18); 7. Sammy Swindell (5); 8. Davey Heskin (14); 9. Hunter Schuerenberg (7); 10. Brent Marks (10); 11. Jason Sides (11); 12. Dominic Scelzi (16); 13. Brooke Tatnell (24); 14. Joey Saldana (21); 15. Josh Schneiderman (17); 16. Skylar Prochaska (8); 17. Sam Hafertepe Jr. (19); 18. Trey Starks (12); 19. Cale Thomas (23); 20. Clint Garner (13); 21. Spencer Bayston (20); 22. Don Droud Jr. (15); 23. Greg Wilson (9); 24. James McFadden (22);

Time Trials Group A, 1. 1S, Logan Schuchart, Hanover, PA (32), 15.607; 2. 09, Matt Juhl, Tea, SD (3), 15.738; 3. 15H, Sam Hafertepe Jr., Sunnyvale, TX (24), 15.744; 4. 26, Joey Saldana, Brownsburg, IN (22), 15.75; 5. 91T, Cale Thomas, Fairland, IN (6), 15.754; 6. 1, Sammy Swindell, Germantown, TN (20), 15.763; 7. 97G, Hunter Schuerenberg, Sikeston, MO (13), 15.775; 8. W20, Greg Wilson, Benton Ridge, OH (11), 15.781; 9. 7S, Jason Sides, Bartlett, TN (9), 15.79; 10. 40, Clint Garner, Sioux Falls, SD (31), 15.792; 11. 1X, Don Droud Jr., Lincoln, NE (19), 15.794; 12. 49J, Josh Schneiderman, West Burlington, IA (21), 15.81; 13. 19P, Paige Polyak, Tiffin, OH (10), 15.813; 14. 81, Lee Jacobs, Dalton, OH (33), 15.845; 15. 7W, Tasker Phillips, Pleasantville, IA (1), 15.86; 16. 3P, Sawyer Phillips, Pleasantville, IA (15), 15.885; 17. 70S, Jeff Swindell, Bartlett, TN (8), 15.9; 18. 28, Scott Bogucki, McLaren Vale, SA, Au (17), 15.939; 19. 21AU, Jordyn Brazier, Sydney, NSW, Aust. (4), 15.943; 20. G1, Gary Taylor, Snohomish, WA (7), 15.947; 21. 7, Carson McCarl, Altoona, IA (23), 15.968; 22. 11, Roger Crockett, Medford, OR (14), 16.006; 23. 95, Matt Covington, Glenpool, OK (28), 16.023; 24. 17WX, Shane Golobic, Fremont, CA (18), 16.028; 25. 28AU, Allan Woods, Brisbane, QLD, Aust. (27), 16.049; 26. 99, Brady Bacon, Broken Arrow, OK (5), 16.07; 27. 9R, Rager Phillips, Pleasantville, IA (26), 16.116; 28. 70, Dave Blaney, High Point, NC (16), 16.161; 29. 71A, RJ Johnson, Tampa, FL (2), 16.183; 30. 5J, Jamie Ball, Knoxville, IA (29), 16.252; 31. 9X, Jake Bubak, Arvada, CO (25), 16.345; 32. 15M, Bobby Mincer, Burlington, IA (12), 16.501; 33. 85, Chase Wanner, Batavia, IA (30), No Time

Time Trials Group B, 1. 21, Brian Brown, Grain Valley, MO (3), 15.794; 2. 13X, Paul McMahan, Nashville, TN (30), 15.816; 3. 17, Sheldon Haudenschild, Wooster, OH (14), 15.825; 4. 0, Lynton Jeffrey, Sydney, NSW, Aust. (7), 15.829; 5. 3H, James McFadden, Ormeau, QLD, Aust. (31), 15.848; 6. 39, Spencer Bayston, Lebanon, IN (8), 15.869; 7. 35P, Skylar Prochaska, Lakefield, MN (16), 15.887; 8. 19, Brent Marks, Myerstown, PA (21), 15.896; 9. 44, Trey Starks, Puyallup, WA (23), 15.903; 10. 56N, Davey Heskin, St. Michael, MN (6), 15.918; 11. 41S, Dominic Scelzi, Fresno, CA (27), 15.918; 12. 35, Jamie Veal, Warrnambool, VIC, Au (24), 15.955; 13. 28P, Brian Paulus, Mooresville, IN (2), 15.965; 14. 55, Brooke Tatnell, Sans Souci, NSW, Aus (17), 16.006; 15. 17X, Josh Baughman, Odessa, TX (19), 16.006; 16. 29, Willie Croft, Roseville, CA (9), 16.025; 17. 7C, John Carney II, El Paso, TX (28), 16.028; 18. 10, Clyde Knipp, California, MO (22), 16.062; 19. 17B, Bill Balog, Hartland, WI (12), 16.099; 20. 48, Danny Dietrich, Gettysburg, PA (13), 16.115; 21. 68, Chase Johnson, Penngrove, CA (5), 16.122; 22. 21K, Thomas Kennedy, Winnipeg, MB, Can. (26), 16.123; 23. 17W, Harli White, Lindsay, OK (1), 16.173; 24. 71X, Kevin Thomas Jr., Cullman, AL (20), 16.18; 25. 99G, Skylar Gee, Leduc, ALB, Can. (32), 16.214; 26. 12N, Cole Duncan, Lockbourne, OH (29), 16.238; 27. 2C, Wayne Johnson, Tuttle, OK (18), 16.271; 28. 25, Bobby McMahan, Elk Grove, CA (10), 16.443; 29. 84, Tom Harris, Banbury, OXFD, UK (15), 16.443; 30. 44M, Chris Martin, Ankeny, IA (25), 16.488; 31. 2K, Kevin Ingle, Huron, SD (11), 16.71; 32. 18J, Jenna Frazier, Rio Linda, CA (4), 17.178;

Heat 1, 8 Laps, No Time: 1. Clint Garner (1); 2. Logan Schuchart (4); 3. Hunter Schuerenberg (2); 4. Joey Saldana (3); 5. Sawyer Phillips (6); 6. Paige Polyak (5); 7. Allan Woods (9); 8. Jordyn Brazier (7); 9. Jake Bubak (11); 10. Dave Blaney (10); 11. Roger Crockett (8);

Heat 2, 8 Laps, No Time: 1. Don Droud Jr. (1); 2. Greg Wilson (2); 3. Matt Juhl (4); 4. Cale Thomas (3); 5. Lee Jacobs (5); 6. Jeff Swindell (6); 7. Brady Bacon (9); 8. Matt Covington (8); 9. Gary Taylor (7); 10. RJ Johnson (10); 11. Bobby Mincer (11);

Heat 3, 8 Laps, No Time: 1. Josh Schneiderman (1); 2. Sammy Swindell (3); 3. Jason Sides (2); 4. Shane Golobic (8); 5. Carson McCarl (7); 6. Tasker Phillips (5); 7. Rager Phillips (9); 8. Sam Hafertepe Jr. (4); 9. Jamie Ball (10); 10. Scott Bogucki (6);

Heat 4, 8 Laps, No Time: 1. Brian Brown (4); 2. Davey Heskin (1); 3. Skylar Prochaska (2); 4. Lynton Jeffrey (3); 5. Willie Croft (6); 6. Thomas Kennedy (8); 7. Skylar Gee (9); 8. Brian Paulus (5); 9. Bill Balog (7); 10. Bobby McMahan (10); 11. Kevin Ingle (11);

Heat 5, 8 Laps, No Time: 1. Paul McMahan (4); 2. Brent Marks (2); 3. Dominic Scelzi (1); 4. Brooke Tatnell (5); 5. Danny Dietrich (7); 6. James McFadden (3); 7. John Carney II (6); 8. Cole Duncan (9); 9. Harli White (8); 10. Tom Harris (10); 11. Jenna Frazier (11);

Heat 6, 8 Laps, No Time: 1. Jamie Veal (1); 2. Sheldon Haudenschild (4); 3. Trey Starks (2); 4. Spencer Bayston (3); 5. Kevin Thomas Jr. (8); 6. Josh Baughman (5); 7. Chase Johnson (7); 8. Chris Martin (10); 9. Wayne Johnson (9); 10. Clyde Knipp (6);

B main: 12 Laps, No Time: 1. Sam Hafertepe Jr. (1); 2. Joey Saldana (2); 3. Cale Thomas (3); 4. Lee Jacobs (5); 5. Brady Bacon (17); 6. Paige Polyak (4); 7. Tasker Phillips (6); 8. Jeff Swindell (8); 9. Shane Golobic (15); 10. Dave Blaney (19); 11. Matt Covington (14); 12. Rager Phillips (18); 13. Carson McCarl (12); 14. Bobby Mincer (23); 15. Jake Bubak (22); 16. RJ Johnson (20); 17. Sawyer Phillips (7); 18. Allan Woods (16); 19. Jordyn Brazier (10); 20. Gary Taylor (11); 21. «Select Driver» (9); 22. Roger Crockett (13); 23. Jamie Ball (21); 24. Chase Wanner (24);

B main: 12 Laps, No Time: 1. Spencer Bayston (3); 2. James McFadden (2); 3. Brooke Tatnell (5); 4. Chase Johnson (12); 5. Josh Baughman (6); 6. Thomas Kennedy (13); 7. Willie Croft (7); 8. Danny Dietrich (11); 9. John Carney II (8); 10. Kevin Thomas Jr. (15); 11. Cole Duncan (17); 12. Skylar Gee (16); 13. Harli White (14); 14. Chris Martin (21); 15. Brian Paulus (4); 16. Bobby McMahan (19); 17. Kevin Ingle (22); 18. Tom Harris (20); 19. Lynton Jeffrey (1); 20. Bill Balog (10); 21. Clyde Knipp (9); 22. Wayne Johnson (18); 23. Jenna Frazier (23);

Speed Sport World Challenge, 20 Laps: 1. Dominic Scelzi (5); 2. Tim Kaeding (11); 3. Austin McCarl (7); 4. Kerry Madsen (14); 5. James McFadden (3); 6. Carson Macedo (13); 7. Skylar Gee (2); 8. Brooke Tatnell (1); 9. Cory Eliason (9); 10. Terry McCarl (10); 11. Ian Madsen (12); 12. Jamie Veal (4); 13. Scott Bogucki (6); 14. Tom Harris (18); 15. Thomas Kennedy (17); 16. Sammy Walsh (8); 17. Jordyn Brazier (15); 18. Allan Woods (16)