MEADVILLE, PA - May 21, 2001 - It was only a matter of time. Despite running a limited schedule in 2001, three-time World of Outlaws champion Sammy Swindell was bound to post a win soon. And what better place to win than Hagerstown Speedway, where...
MEADVILLE, PA - May 21, 2001 - It was only a matter of time. Despite running a limited schedule in 2001, three-time World of Outlaws champion Sammy Swindell was bound to post a win soon. And what better place to win than Hagerstown Speedway, where Swindell now has a series-leading six victories at the famed half-mile track.
Swindell started things off with a fifth-fastest qualifying lap of 15.281 seconds around the semi-banked Hagerstown half-mile. He then finished third in the second O'Reilly Heat Race and fourth in the CHANNELLOCK Dash, cementing an outside second row starting position. Swindell commented, "We've had too many times this year when we had to start way back in the field and just couldn't make up for it. It can be frustrating when you're turning some of the fastest laps during the race, but your starting position put you at a disadvantage early on. Tonight everything really went right from the start"
Within seconds of the green flag, Swindell took the low line on the track to out-maneuver Danny Lasoski and Dale Blaney for the second spot. Setting his sights on race leader Joey Saldana, Swindell used the next two laps to gain ground and, once again hugging the bottom guardrail, passed him for the lead and never looked back. Swindell had a 1.7 second advantage over Saldana when he entered lapped traffic on the sixth lap. Arguably the best competitor in lapped traffic, Swindell weaved his way through the pack to once again enjoy open track. When he caught the lapped cars again on lap 16 his lead had increased to 2.4 seconds. Swindell kept the Channellock #1 Stealth out of trouble and ahead of the pack for the next 12 laps while the rest of the field battled for position. Danny Wood flipped his #21W sprint car in the 28th lap, bringing out the red flag and setting-up a two-lap dash for the win. Swindell once again jumped ahead of the pack on the restart and still passed under the checkered flag 2.3 seconds ahead of Saldana. Tim Shaffer finished third, followed by Mark Kinser in fourth and Lasoski in fifth.
"When everything comes together like it did (at Hagerstown), everyone on the Channellock team just feels great," said Swindell. "We work so hard trying to put all the pieces of the puzzle together from week to week that when we walk away with a race like this, the whole mood just improves and everyone feels like their work has paid off. It's a great feeling."
Swindell and the Channellock Racing team travel to Charlotte, NC for the "Outlaws Showdown" on May 25th and 26th, with both nights to be televised live on TNN at 9:00 p.m. ET. On June 1st Swindell will be on Pennsylvania dirt at Lernerville Speedway in Sarver, just a two-hour drive from Channellock headquarters in Meadville. TNN will televise the race - a first for Lernerville - at 9:00 p.m. ET.