'Crowd Pleaser' Triumphs in Cedar Lake Thriller NEW RICHMOND, WI (July 12) -- Bullrings bring out the best in Craig Dollansky, and "The Crowd Pleaser" won a barn-burner at Cedar Lake Speedway's high-banked, 3/8-mile oval Monday. Dollansky, who...
'Crowd Pleaser' Triumphs in Cedar Lake Thriller
NEW RICHMOND, WI (July 12) -- Bullrings bring out the best in Craig Dollansky, and "The Crowd Pleaser" won a barn-burner at Cedar Lake Speedway's high-banked, 3/8-mile oval Monday.
Dollansky, who has also won World of Outlaws Sprint Series "A" Features at I-55 Raceway (1/3-mile) and Princeton Speedway (1/4-mile) this season, drove the #7 VMAC Maxim past Danny Lasoski late in the 33rd lap on his way to claiming the $10,000 first prize. Two late red periods extended one of the season's most exciting main events.
"This is just great," Dollansky yelled to the capacity crowd. "Danny and I had a great race. He's one of the best drivers out here, along with Steve Kinser, Sammy Swindell, Mark Kinser and the rest of this field. I'm just glad the fans came out. You're the greatest fans in the world, and we hope you saw some great racing.
"To get this VMAC Karavan car here to victory lane tonight with these fans here, and my wife Julie, my dad, my car owner Scott Boyd -- you couldn't ask for a better car owner than Karavan -- and my guys D.J, Lindsey and Chris (Bonilla) is an awesome feeling. D.J. Lindsey is a great crew chief, second to none. These Hoosier Tires, ProShocks and Charlie Garrett Racing Engines; they make it all possible."
Dollansky's fourth "A" Feature victory of the season pushed him past Jason Meyers into fourth place in the World of Outlaws Sprint Series point standings.
"The Crowd Pleaser," the 12th-fastest qualifier in the 33-car field, earned the privilege of starting the 35-lap main event on the front row by winning the Second Dash Race. Dollansky raced wheel-to-wheel with pole-sitter Sammy Swindell -- a six-time winner at Cedar Lake -- down the front straightaway and into turn one as the green flag waved in the "A" Feature before surging ahead high in the second corner.
Jac Haudenschild drove the #5 Wirtgen/MPD Hand Controls Maxim past Paul McMahan and Lasoski during the second and third laps to take over third place, then restarted behind Dollansky after Swindell spun in turn four late in the fourth lap.
"The Crowd Pleaser" raced away while Lasoski challenged Haudenschild for the runner-up spot as the green flag replaced the yellow, and opened a seven-car-length advantage within two laps. The leaders were approaching lapped traffic when Kerry Madsen slammed into the outside retaining wall and flipped on the back straightaway late in lap eight.
World of Outlaws Sprint Series points leader Steve Kinser raced past eight cars during the first seven laps, then drove his #11 Quaker State Maxim around Tim Shaffer in turn two as the race resumed.
Donny Schatz, who earned the 2003 Hard Charger Award, drove his family's #15 Parker Store J&J into eighth place from outside the 10th row by the 12th lap, and took the inside line through the second corner to pass Meyers three laps later.
Lasoski's car owner, Tony Stewart, who won Sunday's Tropicana 400 at Chicagoland Speedway, watched in amazement from the pit area as "The Dude" drove his #20 J.D. Byrider Eagle past Dollansky deep in the fourth corner to take the lead late in lap 16. Haudenschild lost third place when he hit the wall and flipped in turn two a split-second later.
Schatz was on the move again when the green flag replaced the red, passing McMahan and challenging "The King of the Outlaws" for fourth place. Kinser took the low line through the fourth corner to pass defending and five-time Knoxville Raceway champion Terry McCarl late in lap 22.
Dollansky was just inches from Lasoski's rear bumper when they entered lapped traffic two laps later. "The Dude" opened a 20-car-length advantage by lap 27, only to lose the huge lead when Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year leader Kraig Kinser crashed into the wall in turn two. Kinser's #11K Delco-Remy Maxim leaked fluid, forcing officials to throw the red flag and clean the racing surface. Meyers surrendered sixth place when he pitted so his Elite Landscaping crew could replace his right rear tire.
"The Dude" controlled the ensuing restart, and was 10 car-lengths ahead within three laps. Dollansky caught Lasoski early in the 33rd lap, however, and took the lead high in turn four several seconds later.
The leaders were approaching lapped traffic the next time around when fast qualifier Jason Johnson and Mark Kinser crashed in the second corner. Steve Kinser's brilliant 16th-to-third run ended when he hit the retaining wall and flipped in the second corner as the race resumed. "The King of the Outlaws" restarted with a damaged top wing and eventually finished 15th.
Schatz raced past McCarl within a lap after the restart, and was catching the leaders when McMahan bounced off the wall and flipped in turn two, setting up another two-lap dash to the checkered flag.
Dollansky steered the #7 into the high groove as the green flag replaced the red and rode the rim to a three-car-length victory. Schatz raced wheel-to-wheel with "The Dude" through the fourth corner, but finished half a car-length out of second place. Lasoski's sixth runner-up run of the season pushed him to within 64 points of Steve Kinser in their battle for the World of Outlaws Sprint Series points lead.
McCarl held off 22nd-starting Brooke Tatnell for fourth place. Shaffer finished sixth, ahead of Joey Saldana, Meyers, 11th-row starter Brian Paulus and Fourth Heat Race winner Ricky Logan.