Advance Auto Parts World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series Preview: Orange County Fair Speedway Long before auto racing was around, Orange County Fair Speedway was around and hosting horse racing. The storied track has been in existence since 1857,...
Advance Auto Parts World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series Preview: Orange County Fair Speedway
Long before auto racing was around, Orange County Fair Speedway was around and hosting horse racing. The storied track has been in existence since 1857, with 1919 marking the first season the facility hosted an auto race. Stock racing began at the track in 1948. Fast forward nearly 45 years and the Advance Auto Parts World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series made their first visit to the track in 1983.
There have been 10 different drivers pick up wins in the 19 A-Feature events that the series has sanctioned at the sprawling 5/8-mile. There have been four series champions that have won at the track. The series will make their annual visit to Orange County Fair Speedway on Sunday, May 18
Recently there was new clay added to the track, which has softened the surface and has produced two and three-wide racing in their weekly racing program.
Steve Kinser, the 20-time series champion won that first Advance Auto Parts World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series race at the track in 1983 and is the winningest driver with the series at Orange County Fair Speedway with five A-Feature triumphs. He recently won his first series event of the 2008 campaign taking the checkered flag first at Williams Grove Speedway. The native of Bloomington, Indiana currently has 544 career A-Feature wins.
Daryn Pittman added his name to the list of drivers that have won at the track last season, leading all 25-lap of the event.
Donny Schatz, the two-time defending series champion has four consecutive Top-Five finishes at the track, including two straight runner-up performances. He is currently third in the championships standings, just seven markers out of the lead as he chases his third title and first win at Orange County. The North Dakota native is the only driver that has finished in the Top-10 in each of the first nine events this season.
Jason Meyers the current series point leader has two career starts at the sprawling 5/8-mile. He finished fifth last season and was sixth in his debut in 2004.
Craig Dollansky has two consecutive Top-10 finishes at Orange County Fair Speedway. The native of Elk River, Minnesota has eight Top-10 finishes in nine races this season.
Joey Saldana enters the event fourth in points, less than 40 markers behind Meyers, as he continues his third season behind the wheel of the Kasey Kahne owned machine.
Jac Haudenschild has 14 career Top-10 finishes at Orange County, with six Top-Five finishes. The native of Wooster, Ohio is tied with Kerry Madsen for the sixth position in points. Madsen set a new track record in time trials at the track last season.
Chad Kemenah, who is eighth in series points has two Top-10 finishes at Orange County in two starts during his career. He was eighth in 2006 and ninth last season.
Other drivers that will be in action at Orange County Fair Speedway on Sunday, May 18 include: six-time Knoxville Raceway and Huset's Speedway track champion Terry McCarl, 2003 Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year Jason Sides, current rookie leader Lucas Wolfe, second-year driver Sam Hafertepe Jr., 2005 Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year Shane Stewart, Tim Shaffer the series top rookie in 1999, Kraig Kinser who won the rookie crown in 2004, sophomore driver Tony Bruce Jr. and fellow second-year pilot Chad Hillier.
2007 Race Recap: Daryn Pittman earned his first career win at the sprawling track in an event last September after the original event was postponed by rain in May.
Pittman started on the outside of the front row and quickly took the lead from pole sitter Joey Saldana, as he went on to lead all 25 laps, en route to claiming his sixth A-Feature win of the season.
Pittman was challenged early in the race by Saldana. After winning a drag race down the front straightaway on the opening lap, Pittman opened a slight advantage when the caution flew on lap four. Saldana looked low heading into the first and second turns on the ensuing restart, but could not quite close the gap.
The leaders entered lapped traffic on the ninth lap, giving Jac Haudenschild who moved into third on the opening lap, an opportunity to battle Saldana for the runner-up spot. As the pair continued to negotiate lapped traffic, this gave Donny Schatz the chance he needed to close in.
On lap 12, Schatz got around Haudenschild to move into third and set his sights on Saldana, while Pittman continued to lead in traffic.
Saldana continued to run second, and on a lap 17 caution, it was discovered that he had a right rear tire that was going flat. He elected to stay on the track and restarted in the second spot and was running fifth when the tire expired on lap 20, bringing out a caution.
Pittman led on the restart, with Schatz behind him. Schatz moved to the low side of the track on lap 20, as Pittman was running high, but he could not quite close the four car length gap between them. At the line, Pittman won by over a second.
What to look for at Orange County Fair Speedway:
* The battle at the top of the World of Outlaws championship standings is tight, with Jason Meyers leading Craig Dollansky by five points, and Donny Schatz by seven markers after action on Thursday, May 15
* New clay was added this season at Orange County Fair Speedway that has made the track softer and very conducive to two and three-wide racing.
* Meyers has won four of the first nine events this season for the series. He has two wins on half-mile tracks, as well as a 1/3-mile and a four-tenths mile. He has eight Top-10 finishes as well.
* Steve Kinser has five wins in his career at Orange County Fair Speedway. He won the series first race at the track in 1983 and has five consecutive Top-Five finishes at the track. He won his first event of the season at Williams Grove on May 15.
*Donny Schatz, the two-time defending series champion has four consecutive Top-Five finishes, including runner-up performances the last two seasons at the track. He is the only driver that has finished in the Top-10 in each of the nine events this season.
* Jac Haudenschild has 14 Top-10 finishes during his career with the World of Outlaws at Orange County Fair Speedway, including six Top-Five runs. He is currently in the sixth position in points.
* Kerry Madsen set a new track record at Orange County Fair Speedway last season in his debut at the track, that record will be challenged on Sunday, May 18 in time trials.
By the Numbers- Orange County Fair Speedway:
0.625- Miles around Orange County Fair Speedway
1- Point that separated Jason Meyers and Craig Dollansky atop the standings after the event on Tuesday, May 13
2- Races on 5/8-mile tracks this season for the World of Outlaws
3- Races in the state of New York for the World of Outlaws this season
4- Wins for Jason Meyers in eight starts with the series this season through May 13
5- A-Feature wins for Steve Kinser at Orange County
7- Drivers that have led laps this season in A-Feature competition through Tuesday
10- Driver that have won World of Outlaws A-Feature events at the 5/8-mile track
16- Drivers currently competing with the series that raced at Orange County Fair Speedway in 2007
16.836- Track record established by Kerry Madsen on September 26, 2007
18- Drivers currently competing full time with the World of Outlaws
19- A-Feature events that the World of Outlaws have contested at Orange County Fair Speedway, dating back to 1983
25- Laps led by Daryn Pittman en route to the win at Orange County last season
133.642- Track record in miles per hour
208- Miles from Williams Grove Speedway where the World of Outlaws compete on May 15 and May 16 to Orange County Fair Speedway
1857- Year that the racing surface was laid at the Orange County Fairgrounds for horse racing
1919- Year that the first auto race was held at the Orange County Fairgrounds
1948- Year that stock car racing began at what became know as Orange County Fair Speedway
1962- Year the annual season ending "Eastern States" weekend began at the track
1983- Year the World of Outlaws first raced at Orange County Fair Speedway
10,000- Dollars the winner will receive on Sunday, May 18
Tickets: On Sunday, May 18 at Orange County Fair Speedway, general admission tickets for adults will be $32, with general admission tickets for senior citizens and children $30. Reserved tickets for adults will be $37, with reserved tickets for senior citizens and children $35. There will be an autograph session featuring Terry McCarl, Shane Stewart and Chad Hillier at approximately 4:15 p.m. on Sunday along the Midway at Orange County Fair Speedway.
Next Up: A trip south for the Rite Aid Outlaw Showdown at The Dirt Track at Lowe's Motor Speedway on Friday, May 23, which will be broadcast LIVE on SPEED, followed by the series inaugural visit to Virginia Motor Speedway on Saturday, May 24..