Wilmot race report 2006-10-14

Super Sub: Mark Dobmeier Earns First World of Outlaws Win as Tatnell's Replacement Mark Dobmeier had never seen Wilmot Speedway until Saturday afternoon. He also never had sat in the Race Outfitters Eagle that he would be driving until Saturday...

Super Sub: Mark Dobmeier Earns First World of Outlaws Win as Tatnell's Replacement

Mark Dobmeier had never seen Wilmot Speedway until Saturday afternoon. He also never had sat in the Race Outfitters Eagle that he would be driving until Saturday afternoon. Last but certainly least he had never won a World of Outlaws Sprint Series event until Saturday evening.

Dobmeier, who did not know until Thursday that he would be driving the car, edged Jeremy Campbell and Daryn Pittman by mere inches in a thrilling last lap battle to earn a trip to RacinSoles Victory Lane.

The trio raced side-by-side down the back straight-a-way trading the leader several times on the white flag lap. The lap began with Pittman in the lead, until Campbell inched to the front in turn three, then Pittman charged back to retake the lead in turn four, and finally Dobmeier squeezed by both of them right under the checkered flag, with Campbell coming home second and a spinning Pittman crossing the finish line backwards to take the third spot.

Dobmeier who scored his second top-five finish of the year with the series, lined up on the outside of the front row for the 35-lap event, as he filled in for Brooke Tatnell who is in his native Australia with his father George, who is battling cancer.

"I can't even put it in perspective yet," said a smiling Dobmeier, surrounded by family and friends. "It doesn't seem like it is real yet. It's incredible. I think it will take about a month for this to sink in."

Campbell aboard the Americas Best Value Inn Maxim led the first 10 laps of the race, after winning his second dash of the season to earn the pole position. The native of Monroe, Mich., matched his best career World of Outlaws finish. While he was disappointed he did not pick up his first victory, the hard charging freshman driver was very pleased that he ran at the front of the field all night long.

"I tried," said Campbell. "I was so close. It was three wide going to the (finish) line. I'm amazed. I can't think right now. This was awesome."

Pittman in the Titan Garages & Carports Maxim led a race high 23 laps after starting fourth and quickly made his way into the Top-three. He took the lead on lap 11 as he dove around Campbell, and opened up a healthy advantage until getting slowed by a couple caution periods.

"I've won some races for these guys, and tonight I lost one," said a philosophical Pittman. "We probably had one of the best cars and led almost every lap."

Craig Dollansky in the Karavan Trailers Maxim ran in the top-five the entire night. Though he too was disappointed not to win, the native of Elk River Minn., was proud to be part of a great show for the fans that braved a chilly Wisconsin evening to see the event that was postponed by rain on September 23.

"We weren't real good, but we were definitely right there in the hunt," said Dollanksy. "It would have been nice to have seen some of those yellows go away and go more laps in lapped traffic. That was out best shot to win the race. It seemed like every time we got to that point the yellow would come out."

Justin Henderson in the Jolt Energy Gum Schnee started on the inside of the second row in the A-Feature and quickly powered his way into the runner-up spot on the first lap. He would hold that position until lap eight, and would eventually settle for a solid fifth place finish, while battling an ill handling car.

"We had a decent run all night," said Henderson. "The car was not quite right. We kind of hung in there for fifth place. We went backwards most of the night, and we ended up with a top-five. You can't complain about a top-five, at least we can't. We haven't had a lot of them this year. Hopefully we've gained a little momentum going into these last four races when you talk about the point battle."

The rest of the Top-10 was current championship point leader Donny Schatz in the Parker Store J&J in sixth. Randy Hannagan was seventh in the Penthouse Racing Maxim. Jac Haudenschild in the Wright One Construction Maxim came home eighth. Mike Kertscher in the Captain Jim's Yacht Sales Eagle was ninth. Joey Saldana rounded out the Top-10 in the Mopar-powered Dodge/Curb Records JEI, after sustaining a flat tire early in the race that sent him to the rear of the field after visiting the work area.

Dobmeier slipped back to fourth on the second lap, and stayed there until the 10th circuit when he slid around Henderson to snare the third position. From there he set his sights on Campbell and patiently watched his every move and on the 15th lap, Dobmeier got around him in traffic.

After a lap 25 restart, Dobmeier was able to get a run on Pittman in turns one and two to take the lead and held the top spot for that circuit. It was the first time in his career he led a lap in a World of Outlaws feature event. After battling back into the lead on the following lap, Pittman began to pull away from Dobmeier and the rest of the field.

With two laps to go, the native of Owasso, Oklahoma, got bottled up in heavy lapped traffic and that allowed Dobmeier and Campbell to close in on his back bumper.

"I came off the back straight-a-way and I thought I had the lead," said the winner. "Then I saw (Jeremy) Campbell inside of me and he led going into the last corner. I knew my only chance was to go up top. I was looking forward and that is where I was going.

I held it wide open and let it rip around the top, and it was by inches at the finish line."

Dobmeier started the night off by qualifying in the sixth spot in his maiden voyage for the Rush Racing team. He followed that up with a solid finish in his heat race, which earned him a spot in the dash, where he would finish second.

"This was a crazy night from the get-go," said Dobmeier. "We qualified well and got a good starting position. I just capitalized on it. In the feature we fell back a few spots, and slowly kept at it. We definitely needed a few lapped cars to mix it up a little bit. I was just waiting for them and they came into play right at the end. With it being a 35-lap race we were patient, and it came around to us on the last lap. I think we had three different leaders on the last lap."

Dobmeier credited crew chief Troy Renfro for helping him get up to speed so quickly in his first visit to the racy 3/8-mile with the team. Renfro, who has helped guide Tatnell to four wins this year, was very proud of Dobmeier and the entire team.

"It is remarkable," said Renfro. "I've won Outlaws races and Mark Dobmeier hadn't. I'm more happy for him that he won his first Outlaws race. He's somebody that Brooke and myself wanted to put in the car. I think he's a really good racer. Sometimes in your life you need an opportunity, and we wanted to give him an opportunity. It paid off."

Campbell was glad to see lapped traffic both early and late in the race, and knew that he had a chance to close the gap on the two leaders once they got behind the slower machines.

"On the last lap we got caught up in some lapped cars," said Campbell. "I just got the line on the bottom and got a good run off of turn two. I was in the lead going into turn three and there were lapped cars on the bottom and top, and I had nowhere to go. I just ran through the middle and went to the top and (Mark) Dobmeier was right there and then Pittman came in."

Daryn Pittman was not as happy to see the lapped traffic as he was closing in on what would have been his fifth win of the season. As he replayed the last lap in his mind, he pointed a brief lapse in judgment that broke his momentum on the track. Though visibly disappointed that he did not win, he shared very high regards for the two young drivers that finished ahead of him.

"We got in traffic and they were running two-wide and I did what you don't do, I hesitated," lamented Pittman. "I didn't really know how to get by them. I was getting tighter and the car was not as good at the end of the race. The bottom line is that we still should have brought home in victory lane and we didn't. My hat is off to Mark (Dobmeier). He had a good car all night. Jeremy Campbell definitely is a big up-and-comer. We were obviously right there with them the whole time. We're disappointed, but that's racing and it was a good show for the fans if that is any consolation."

While the temperatures outside of the car was just above the freezing mark, Dobmeier did not notice that once he was strapped in and put his helmet on. He was focused on getting to the front. In fact, he was able to make light of the chilly weather as he stood with his trophy in the winner's circle.

"I'm from North Dakota (Grand Forks), so I am use to this (the cold)," said Dobmeier. "We got snow the other day. This is just like being at home here. Once you get going, you block everything out and just focus on the racing. As far as the conditions, they didn't really affect me at all."

With Tatnell expected back in the car next Friday, Dobmeier was thrilled he could pick up a win for the team and build some momentum for them as they head into the final four races of the season.

"I'm sure glad I could win one for him (Brooke Tatnell)," said Dobmeier. "I know it's been tough for him. I got to fill in for him, and I am glad we could through for him."

Campbell also carries plenty of momentum into the final two weekends of the season. He is especially looking forward to the season finale at Las Vegas, where he earned his first runner-up finish earlier in the season.

"We have two Canadians that now work for me. Kevin (Loveys) knows a lot," said the contender for the Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year Award Presented by Maxim Racing and ButlerBuilt. "I am impressed. We still have the Gaerte motors in and went back to our Penske shocks. Everything is back to normal. We are looking forward to going to Las Vegas. We did real good there at the beginning of the year, and hopefully we can do good there at the end of the end. Maybe I can get a win, I'm close."

Fellow rookie Becca Anderson set a new track record in time trials, it was the third time this season that she has stopped the clocks first.

The World of Outlaws Sprint Series heads to Arizona next weekend for the Outlaw Desert Classic on Friday night at Manzanita Speedway and Saturday night at USA Race Park.

WILMOT SPEEDWAY NOTEBOOK

* FAST QUALIFIER: Becca Anderson paced the 41 cars that took time with a record setting AMB i.t.-timed lap around the 3/8-mile semi-banked oval at 12.703 seconds at 106.274 mph. For her qualifying effort, Anderson earned five bonus points. The next four fastest qualifiers also earned bonus points, including Donny Schatz (4), Daryn Pittman (3), Wayne Johnson (2), and Chad Blonde (1).

* QUALIFYING EVENT WINNERS: Heat race winners included: Randy Hannagan, Wayne Johnson, Terry McCarl, and Tommy Sexton. ... Chad Kemenah won the B-Main. ... Jeremy Campbell won the dash.

* UP NEXT: A pair of events in Arizona are in store, as the Outlaws visit Manzanita Speedway on Oct. 20 and USA Race Park on Oct. 21. The following weekend, the season wraps up with a two-day show at The Dirt Track @ Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Oct. 27-28.

-credit: woo

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About this article
Series World of Outlaws
Drivers Donny Schatz , Craig Dollansky , Brooke Tatnell , Daryn Pittman , Joey Saldana , Randy Hannagan , Becca Anderson , Jac Haudenschild , Wayne Johnson