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Series drivers New Zealand news 2007-12-16

Saldana Wins in New Zealand After completing the most successful campaign of his career with the Advance Auto Parts World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series this past season, Joey Saldana returned to action on Saturday night in New Zealand,...

Saldana Wins in New Zealand

After completing the most successful campaign of his career with the Advance Auto Parts World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series this past season, Joey Saldana returned to action on Saturday night in New Zealand, and picked up a $20,000 win.

Saldana was teamed with fellow World of Outlaws driver Craig Dollansky for the always potent Salter Motorsports team. The pair took to the track at TeMarua Speedway in Wellington, New Zealand for part of the International Sprint Car season on Saturday night.

Saldana, who won 13 times with the World of Outlaws in 2007, lined up fifth for the 30-lap A-Feature aboard the No. USA63 machine. He moved into the third spot on lap eight, with a pass of Greg Pickerill. Just three laps later he moved into second, getting around multi-time New Zealand champion Allan Wakeling.

The native of Brownsburg, Indiana then patiently tracked down leader Kerry Jones and made the pass for the lead and ultimately the win on the 20th lap.

"We had a very good night and it feels great to win," said Saldana. "The cool thing is that I jumped in the car and in our first time out, we had a strong run."

Dollansky lined up sixth for the race on Saturday night, after the Top-Six in points from the heat races were inverted. Despite some trouble with his engine, he came home in the sixth spot. He won his first race of the International season at Western Springs Speedway two weeks ago and was set to start on the pole at the ¼-mile last week before rain postponed the A-Feature.

In preliminary action at TeMarua Speedway, Saldana won the first heat race, with a thrilling last lap pass of the front two cars, after running third for most of the race, and he was second in the third heat. Dollansky picked up wins in both the second and fourth heat races to earn the most points which were used to determine the starting grid for the A-Feature.

The pair will return to action on Saturday, December 22 at Palmerston North Speedway in Palmerston, New Zealand for the Salter Motorsports team.

The 30th anniversary Advance Auto Parts World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series season opens on February 8 with the 37th Annual Florida DIRTcar Nationals at Volusia Speedway Park.

-credit: woo

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