Grays Harbor: Finale race report

Shaffer stops slump with Grays Harbor victory. ELMA, WA (August 17) -- Not only does Grays Harbor Raceway Park host the Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series' only double-feature event during its Wild, Wild Northwest Tour, it is also becoming a ...

Shaffer stops slump with Grays Harbor victory.

ELMA, WA (August 17) -- Not only does Grays Harbor Raceway Park host the Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series' only double-feature event during its Wild, Wild Northwest Tour, it is also becoming a facility of hope for drivers looking to salvage their seasons.

Tim Shaffer became the second driver in two nights to end a lengthy slump Saturday, winning his first "A" Feature of the season. The 1999 Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year passed Steve Kinser late in the 11th lap on his way to claiming the $12,000 first prize. Shaffer is the 15th driver to win a Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series main event this year.

"I'm just glad to finally get a win," Shaffer told the capacity crowd. "We've been close a few times this year, but things just haven't gone our way. We haven't had a week off in a long time, so I'm not quite sure what I'm going to do, but it'll be a lot better after tonight."

Shaffer was dominant throughout the Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series' 50th feature program of the season, setting quick time and winning the First Heat Race. He earned the right to start the 40-lap main event inside the second row by passing Danny Lasoski and Jac Haudenschild during the O'Reilly Auto Parts Dash.

Cousins Mark and Steve Kinser started out the front row and raced wheel-to-wheel down the front straightaway as the green flag fell in the "A" Feature. Steve drove his #11 Quaker State Maxim into the lead in the low groove between the first and second corners.

Shaffer chased Mark Kinser for a lap before passing him deep in turn three. Lasoski used an inside move in the first corner to pass "The Wild Child" for third place late in lap three.

The Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series points leader was 1.2 seconds ahead of Shaffer when he entered lapped traffic six laps into the race. Shaffer caught "The King of the Outlaws" early in lap 11 and passed him in dense lapped traffic high in the fourth corner several seconds later.

Glenn Borden, Jr., knocked Mark Kinser out of third place three laps later, spinning into him in turn one. Kinser restarted at the back of the pack after his crew repaired a damaged header on the #5M Mopar Maxim.

Third Heat Race winner Toni Lutar stopped in the fourth corner with a flat right rear tire late in the 16th lap. Donny Schatz surrendered eighth place when he coasted into the pits with steering problems. Schatz' crew was unable to repair the #15 Parker Stores J&J in time for him to restart the race, so the 1997 Rookie of the Year had to settle for a 23rd-place finish. Mark Kinser also pitted replace his flat right rear tire.

Shaffer controlled the final restart and opened a 1.9-second advantage within four laps. Steve Kinser raced with Shaffer through turns one and two during lap 25, but was unable to surge ahead.

Haudenschild challenged "The Dude" for seven laps before driving the #5 Wirtgen Maxim past him high in the second corner to claim third place early in lap 19.

Although Shaffer saw his advantage shrink to .3 seconds in lapped traffic with nine laps remaining, he was 1.4 seconds ahead of Kinser when he took the checkered flag.

"We hit traffic in just the right spots tonight and my crew did a great job," Shaffer said. "We had a great car all night long from beginning to end. Steve and I got pretty close a couple of times, but that's just racing. This race track was awesome and things worked out great for us."

Haudenschild finished in third place, while Lasoski finished fourth in his third straight race since returning from injuries suffered in a crash July 26th at Williams Grove Speedway. Stevie Smith finished in fifth place, ahead of Brad Furr, Daryn Pittman, Joey Saldana, P.J. Chesson and 15th-starting Randy Hannagan.

Lasoski, who led the Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series standings when he suffered the injury, passed Craig Dollansky for third place in the points race. Chesson's ninth-place finish pushed him into 14th place in the point standings.

Shaffer paced the qualifying session for the seventh time this year, circling the semi-banked, 3/10-mile oval in 12.203 seconds. Saldana was also clocked at 88.503 M.P.H., but Shaffer posted the time earlier.

The Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series will run $51,600 events at Skagit Speedway Friday and Central Washington State Fair Speedway Saturday.

-WoO-

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About this article
Series World of Outlaws
Drivers Tim Shaffer , Brad Furr , Mark Kinser , Danny Lasoski , Donny Schatz , Steve Kinser , Craig Dollansky , Daryn Pittman , Joey Saldana , Randy Hannagan , Toni Lutar , Jac Haudenschild
Teams Williams