ROSSBURG, OH – The man is on a roll. Donny Schatz completed the weekend sweep of the World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series portion of Let’s Race Two at Eldora Speedway holding off Logan Schuchart for the second consecutive night. It was Schatz’ eighth win of the 2018 season and fourth in his last five starts as he continues to extend his lead atop the Series Point Standings in search of his 10th Outlaw Championship.
Schatz won the Sears Craftsman Dash and shared the front row with Parker Price-Miller. It was PPM getting the jump on the start as the Indiana native set the pace for the first four laps on the cushion before Schatz took command of the field on the fifth circuit on the bottom.
Schuchart just barely edged Price-Miller to the line on Lap 7, which was significant because the caution flew for Sheldon Haudenschild, lining Schuchart to the outside of Schatz. Haudenschild, who entered the evening third in the World of Outlaws Point Standings, was unable to return to action.
The restart saw Schatz and Schuchart put a straightaway back to the rest of the field, as the duo, who finished first and second a night ago, were once again the class of the field. Schuchart was able to keep his Shark Racing No.1S glued to the bottom of the Eldora Speedway racing surface and close in on Schatz.
But, catching Donny Schatz and passing Donny Schatz are two entirely different things. Every time it appeared Schuchart may have a run to get underneath Schatz, the Fargo, ND native would go to the bottom, forcing Schuchart to the top. Schuchart’s No.1S was not as strong on the cushion, allowing Schatz to maintain the lead each time.
With consecutive Green Flag action, lapped traffic played a factor. Schatz reminded everyone why he is the nine-time and defending Series Champion with his prowess through a maze of lapped cars. Schuchart, an Outlaw winner at Eldora last year, stayed right with Schatz every step and just as he was about to pull even with the Champion, the caution flew for an ailing Spencer Bayston with five laps remaining.
With five or fewer laps remaining in the Feature, the start was single-file. Schuchart and third-place running Aaron Reutzel both stayed with Schatz on the restart, but Donny was too strong and went on to take the checkered flag 1.536 seconds ahead of Schuchart.
“We love lapped traffic. That’s where races are won and lost,” Schatz said in Victory Lane when prompted about the close-quartered racing action. “My guys are incredible. We keep working, keep digging and keep finding ways to be up here at the end of the night,” Schatz added before expressing his thanks to the fans for coming out and thanking the track and officials for running an accelerated program to beat Mother Nature.
When asked about the close racing with Schuchart, Schatz referenced an old tale from his father, “If you are worried about what is behind you, you are going to have a hell of a time handling what’s in front of you. I’ve always raced like that and tonight was no different.”
Schuchart was pleased with his second consecutive runner-up finish. “It was a lot of fun racing up there. I know my heart was pumping, it was hard to stay calm,” the upbeat Hanover, PA native said. “What a great weekend for us. Two podiums and if you are going to finish second to someone, that’s a hell of a team to finish behind. They are incredible, but we are going to try and keep working hard to beat them,” Schuchart added.
Reutzel’s 2018 speed continued as he followed up last night’s disappointment of wrecking while leading with a podium finish. “I probably should have been a little more aggressive on the top, but we definitely wanted to finish after last night,” the Texan and current All-Star point leader said.
Kraig Kinser had an impressive 15th to fourth run for his best finish of the season with Tim Shaffer completing the top five. Early race leader Parker Price-Miller settled for sixth with Kerry Madsen, 17th-starting Brad Sweet, 22nd-starting Ian Madsen and 24th-starting Daryn Pittman completing the top ten. Pittman claimed KSE Hard Charger honors for the second consecutive night.
The Greatest Show on Dirt continues its 40th Anniversary Season with a haul to the Hoosier State for a third-attempt at racing at Tri-State Speedway in Haubstadt, IN tomorrow evening Sunday, May 13. After that, the Series will head to Central Pennsylvania to take on the tough Pennsylvania Posse at Lincoln Speedway on May 16 and at Williams Grove on May 18 and 19. If you can’t make it to the track, be sure to watch all the action LIVE on DIRTVision.com!
Abbreviated Results from Eldora Speedway: May 12, 2018
Feature (30 Laps): 1. 15-Donny Schatz [$10,000]; 2. 1S-Logan Schuchart [$5,000]; 3. 87-Aaron Reutzel [$3,000]; 4. 11K-Kraig Kinser [$2,700]; 5. 49X-Tim Shaffer [$2,500]; 6. 4-Parker Price-Miller [$2,200]; 7. 2M-Kerry Madsen [$2,000]; 8. 49-Brad Sweet [$1,800]; 9. 18-Ian Madsen [$1,600]; 10. 9-Daryn Pittman [$1,450]; 11. 7S-Jason Sides [$1,300]; 12. 41-Jason Johnson [$1,200]; 13. 99-Brady Bacon [$1,100]; 14. 5-David Gravel [$1,000]; 15. 2-Shane Stewart [$950]; 16. 1A-Jacob Allen [$900]; 17. 26-Joey Saldana [$850]; 18. 24-Rico Abreu [$750]; 19. 13X-Paul McMahan [$725]; 20. 10H-Chad Kemenah [$700]; 21. 19-Brent Marks [$700]; 22. 39-Spencer Bayston [$700]; 23. 12N-Cole Duncan [$700]; 24. 17-Sheldon Haudenschild [$700]; Lap Leaders: Parker Price-Miller 1-4, Donny Schatz 5-30; KSE Hard Charger Award: 9-Daryn Pittman[+14]
Qualifying: 1. 5-David Gravel, 12.91; 2. 2M-Kerry Madsen, 12.939; 3. 15-Donny Schatz, 12.949; 4. 87-Aaron Reutzel, 13.007; 5. 1S-Logan Schuchart, 13.032; 6. 7S-Jason Sides, 13.051; 7. 4-Parker Price-Miller, 13.057; 8. 49X-Tim Shaffer, 13.057; 9. 13X-Paul McMahan, 13.06; 10. 44-Trey Starks, 13.068; 11. 2-Shane Stewart, 13.076; 12. 12N-Cole Duncan, 13.076; 13. 24-Rico Abreu, 13.092; 14. 41-Jason Johnson, 13.101; 15. 17-Sheldon Haudenschild, 13.109; 16. 39-Spencer Bayston, 13.12; 17. 49-Brad Sweet, 13.152; 18. 26-Joey Saldana, 13.194; 19. 11K-Kraig Kinser, 13.199; 20. 10H-Chad Kemenah, 13.206; 21. 19-Brent Marks, 13.209; 22. 1A-Jacob Allen, 13.214; 23. 9-Daryn Pittman, 13.233; 24. 18-Ian Madsen, 13.251; 25. 99-Brady Bacon, 13.27; 26. 57-Gary Taylor, 13.296; 27. 3-Jac Haudenschild, 13.339; 28. 49D-Shawn Dancer, 13.395; 29. 45-Trevor Baker, 13.439; 30. 17C-Caleb Helms, 13.512; 31. 22M-Dan McCarron, 13.569; 32. 28-Brian Paulus, 13.603; 33. W20-Greg Wilson, 13.658; 34. 13-Clyde Knipp, 13.698; 35. 5QB-Quentin Blonde, 13.948; 36. 83-Cory Eliason, 14.283
For full results from Eldora Speedway – May 12, 2018, click here.