Danny Lasoski hooks win at Cottage Grove for first World of Outlaws A-feature victory of '05 Cottage Grove, OR -- August 30, 2005 -- Racing on quarter-mile ovals requires patience, awareness and a car that works anywhere on the track. Danny...
Danny Lasoski hooks win at Cottage Grove for first World of Outlaws A-feature victory of '05
Cottage Grove, OR -- August 30, 2005 -- Racing on quarter-mile ovals requires patience, awareness and a car that works anywhere on the track. Danny Lasoski had all of that going for him Tuesday night at Cottage Grove Speedway as powered his Bass Pro Shops Eagle to his first World of Outlaws Sprint Series A-feature victory of the season.
Lasoski, who won two early-season preliminary races, slid past Jason Meyers on Lap 23 of the 40-lap race and continued to pull away to become the 17th different A-feature winner of the season. He patiently waited for Meyers to hit traffic then darted around, had big jumps on the final four of seven cautions, and drove his Mopar-powered Tony Stewart Motorsports machine to Victory Lane for the third time in his career at the Cottage Grove quarter-mile oval.
Meyers fought off Craig Dollansky to finish second in his Elite Landscaping Maxim, aided by the final caution of the race with 11 laps to go just as Dollansky made a move in Turn 2 to get second in his VMAC/Karavan J&J. Terry McCarl in his Big Game Treestands Eagle and Tim Shaffer in his Casey's General Stores Maxim held their ground throughout the 40 laps to round out the top five.
Donny Schatz, who won Saturday at Grays Harbor, continued his team's momentum with a strong sixth-place run after starting 20th. Joey Saldana wound up seventh with championship points leader Steve Kinser in eighth after starting 22nd. Jason Sides and Jason Solwold made up the top 10, with Sides earning his second consecutive top-10 finish.
"It looked like [Meyers] could maneuver anywhere but the top and my car was good on the top and bottom," said Lasoski, a Mean 15 racer from Dover, Mo., whose car is owned by current NASCAR Nextel Cup Series points leader Tony Stewart. "I knew if I ever got to him and he got held up just a little by the lapped cars we could get under him and once I got on top this thing would really roll.
"We could go anywhere we needed to go. I grew up in Knoxville on the half-miles and Sioux Falls on the quarter-miles and I love these quarter-miles as well as the half-miles, but when you've got a car working like this it's like, 'Holy cow it's fun to race.'"
Meyers, who has three of his four victories this season on half-mile ovals, earned his fourth pole of the season by winning the Stacker 2® Dash and led the most laps in the feature before he finally was forced to give up the lead on the bottom in traffic.
"I went down there to protect," said Meyers, a Mean 15 racer from Clovis, Calif., who has finished in the top 10 on five of the past six race nights including preliminaries. "I knew [Lasoski] would try down there so I went down there for a couple of laps and he just drove around me. Then I saw him down the back shoot and I probably should have been more aggressive and driven him over the cushion. I just didn't do it and he won the race fair and square.
After Lasoski took the lead, he was working so well on the top it was nearly impossible for anybody to catch him with most of the lapped cars sticking in the bottom groove all night. That meant the only chance for anybody chasing him down was to get him on the restarts. After a caution with 12 laps to go, Lasoski shot out quickly as Dollansky caught and passed Meyers in Turn 2 just as another caution waved, moving Dollansky back to third. With Meyers and Dollansky battling for second in the championship standings, the racing for second at Cottage Grove was intense, with neither driver backing down.
"Danny was taking off real early on the restarts and I wasn't getting a good run off of Turn 4," Meyers said. "When Craig got underneath me, it surprised me and I got a lucky break. We didn't complete that lap and I got that spot back."
Dollansky, who was on his way to victory in the preliminary feature earlier this month at Billings before a flat tire knocked him out of a crucial top-four position, posted his best result since he was third in July at Attica. He trails Meyers by only 90 points as the season begins to wind down.
"Billings was looking real good for us," said Dollansky, a Mean 15 racer from Elk River, Minn., who has two A-feature victories and two preliminary wins this season. "We were going to pick up a win and ended up cutting a tire while leading the race with a couple of laps to go. It just kind of set the tone for our whole trip out here. We struggled at Elma and coming here tonight, getting a top three is good, but really we were looking for more than that."
Terry McCarl appears to be closing in on his first victory of the season as he has finished in the top four for three consecutive race nights on tracks where he was competing for the first time in his career. By finishing one spot in front of Shaffer, he moved to within 15 points of Shaffer for ninth place in the championship standings.
"I got by Craig a couple of times and the yellow came out, he got by [Meyers] and the yellow came out so we all kind of got burnt by that," said McCarl, a six-time Knoxville Raceway champion from Altoona, Iowa. "I got by Craig and we came up to [Meyers] and I dove him for second and missed it and Craig got back by me. We had a really good car, and for not being here before I'm real happy with my crew and my car. We just keep plugging away and trying to knock these top-fives down. A good friend told a long time ago, you get consistently in top-10 first, then you get consistently in the top-five, and if you're consistently in the top five you're going to pick up a win once in a while. We just got to win a couple of races before the season ends and we'll have a great year.
"I was hoping for more traffic because I think I could run the bottom down in Turns 1 and 2 better than most of those guys and I knew I could run the top as good as them and I think I could move around a little better than them, and so could Danny. That's where Danny had a little better car in traffic than Jason did. I think I had a better car than Jason and Craig in traffic, but out in the open we were all pretty equal."
Shaffer, a three-time winner this season, finished fifth on a quarter-mile oval for the second consecutive time after duplicating his position from earlier this month at Lawrenceburg, Ind.
"We could sneak up there little by little and we kind of got to where we were hanging a little bit, getting a little loose," said Shaffer, a Mean 15 racer from Aliquippa, Pa., who won the $30,000 Don Martin Memorial Silver Cup in July at Lernerville Speedway. "On a quarter-mile, you earn it. We got in some traffic for a little bit but it didn't last long. It would have been exciting to see really full-blown traffic around to see what would happen because that's when everybody gets moving around and checking the track."
After leaving Cottage Grove Speedway the series heads down the West Coast to California for the Harvest Classic Sept. 2-4 at Calistoga Speedway in Calistoga and the Gold Cup Sept. 8-10 at Silver Dollar Speedway in Chico.
COTTAGE GROVE SPEEDWAY NOTEBOOK
* Kraig Kinser broke the single-lap record when he paced the 34 cars that went through time trials by turning an AMB i.t.-timed lap around the quarter-mile oval in 10.254 seconds at 87.771 mph. Oregon's Roger Crockett, who captured the pole Friday at Grays Harbor Raceway, was the second-quickest in time trials with a lap in 10.281 seconds at 87.540 mph. Randy Hannagan had owned the single-lap record in a World of Outlaws event with a 10.305-second lap on Aug. 23, 1999.
As the defending champion at Cottage Grove, and with victories on two other quarter-miles this season, Kinser has demonstrated exceptional talent on the series' shortest ovals.
"We used to run a lot of them back home when I first started," said Kinser, who won the prestigious Knoxville Nationals earlier this month. "I can run terrible on them or I can run good on them."
* In Tuesday's event at Cottage Grove Speedway, the racers competing for second and third in the championship standings finished second (Jason Meyers) and third (Craig Dollansky), the drivers battling for ninth and 10th finished fourth (Terry McCarl) and fifth (Tim Shaffer), and the drivers racing for 15th finished ninth (Jason Sides) and 10th (Jason Solwold).
* Jason Meyers, a Clovis, Calif. native, is one of many racers looking forward to competing in California for the next two events at Calistoga Speedway and Silver Dollar Speedway in Chico, even if he has been less than successful racing there against the Outlaws.
"I don't think I've ever run good through the California swing," Meyers said. "I've won at Chico and Calistoga numerous times, but never with the Outlaws. I really want to do well out here. We've been saving our best motors for this swing. I'm really looking forward to going home and running well."
* Danny Lasoski's victory Tuesday at Cottage Grove Speedway was his first A-feature win of the season, making him the 17th different A-feature winner with the Outlaws. Including preliminary features, there have been 22 different drivers to visit victory lane this season, including Lasoski twice. ... Steve Kinser has a series-leading 17 A-feature victories to go with three preliminary wins. ... Kraig Kinser captured the Knoxville Nationals on Aug. 14 for his sixth A-feature victory of the season. He also has a preliminary feature win at Las Vegas. ... Donny Schatz earned his fifth victory of the season on Aug. 27 at Grays Harbor Raceway in Elma, Wash. ... Jason Meyers earned his fourth win of the season July 2 at Red River Valley Speedway in West Fargo, N.D. ... Tim Shaffer's victory July 19 in the Silver Cup was his third of the season, going with wins Lake Ozark Speedway and Thunderbowl Raceway. ... Craig Dollansky has won two features, most recently at Powercom Park, and he also has two preliminary feature wins. ... Brian Paulus won June 28 at Huset's Speedway for his second victory of the season, and picked up a preliminary feature win in the following race at Red River Valley Speedway. ... Brooke Tatnell has two A-feature victories, winning at Cedar Lake and Fulton speedways, as well as a preliminary feature win at Princeton Speedway. ... Sammy Swindell won his second A-feature of the season June 4 at Eldora Speedway. Swindell also has a preliminary feature win April 8 at Eldora and Aug. 14 at Knoxville Raceway in the Nationals' non-qualifiers event. ... Daryn Pittman won his second A-feature of the season Aug. 21 at BMP Speedway in Billings, Mont. ... Fred Rahmer won the Summer Nationals crown July 23 and picked up a preliminary feature win in the Knoxville Nationals on Aug. 10. ... Single-event winners include Jac Haudenschild on Aug. 5 at Eldora Speedway, Stevie Smith July 13 at Attica Raceway Park, Tim Kaeding June 11 at Sheboygan County Fair Park, Chad Kemenah July 9 at I-55 Raceway, and Jeff Shepard Feb. 11 at Volusia Speedway Park. ... In preliminary features, Joey Saldana, Paul McMahan, Jason Johnson and Shane Stewart have each won once.
* The race at Cottage Grove Speedway was on a quarter-mile oval. The series has raced seven times this season on tracks that size, including preliminary features. Steve Kinser won April 16 at Tri-State Speedway in Haubstadt, Ind.; Tim Kaeding won June 11 at Sheboygan County Fair Park in Sheboygan, Wis.; Kraig Kinser won June 14 at Kokomo Speedway in Kokomo, Ind.; Brooke Tatnell won July 29 at Princeton Speedway in Princeton, Minn.; Steve Kinser won July 30 at Princeton; Kraig Kinser won Aug. 3 in Lawrenceburg, Ind.; and Danny Lasoski won Aug. 30 in Cottage Grove, Ore.
* Drivers who have earned victories in preliminary features this season include (in alphabetical order) Craig Dollansky twice (Manzanita/Williams Grove), Jason Johnson once (Williams Grove), Kraig Kinser once (Las Vegas), Steve Kinser three times (Eagle/Billings/Elma), Danny Lasoski twice (Australia/Knoxville), Kerry Madsen once (Australia), Paul McMahan once (Williams Grove), Brian Paulus once (Red River Valley), Fred Rahmer once (Knoxville), Joey Saldana once (Lernerville), Shane Stewart once (Knoxville), Brooke Tatnell once (Princeton), Sammy Swindell twice (Eldora/Knoxville).
* In the Stacker 2® Dash that set the inside top six rows for the main event, Jason Meyers powered out to a huge lead and drove off to the checkered flag. Danny Lasoski fought off Terry McCarl to finish second as Kraig Kinser, Jonathan Allard and Jason Sides rounded out the field.
* In the second dash that set the outside top six rows for the A-main, Craig Dollansky quickly opened a lead as Joey Saldana pedaled his way along the cushion to slide from fourth to second. Brian Paulus raced to the checkered flag in third as he was followed by Brandon Wimmer and Jason Solwold.
* In the B-main, following two early cautions, Roger Crockett took control and weaved his way through traffic to earn the victory. Daryn Pittman cut into Crockett's lead and finished second with Billy Nutter and Brandon Johnson earning the remaining spots in the feature.
* In the first heat, Shane Stewart got the jump off of Turn 4 and shot into the lead as fast-qualifier Kraig Kinser started sixth and cut from top to bottom in Turns 1 and 2 to slip into the final transfer spot. After a first-lap caution, the leaders pulled away with Stewart taking the checkered flag as Travis Rutz, Craig Dollansky, Terry McCarl and Kinser also transferred.
* In the second heat, Tim Kaeding was cruising along with Tim Shaffer, Brooke Tatnell, Jason Meyers and Brandon Wimmer in the transfer positions when Tony Thomas of Mill City, Ore., shot directly off of Turn 4 and hit the front-stretch wall extremely hard. Thomas was awake and alert as emergency workers took him to an area hospital for observation. On the restart, Kaeding charged back to lead and grabbed the checkered flag as the field fell in line with Shaffer, Tatnell, Meyers and Wimmer transferring to the main event.
* In the third heat, after racing side-by-side with Paul McMahan into the first corner, Steve Kinser pulled away and led flag-to-flag for to win. McMahan settled into second with Jonathan Allard, Brian Paulus and Joey Saldana cruising around the quarter-mile oval to earn the remaining transfer spots.
* In the fourth heat, Donny Schatz and Jac Haudenschild motored side-by-side through the first two turns before Haudenschild slid way up the track in Turn 3 and Schatz powered down the front stretch. Halfway through the heat, Schatz was lapping cars and easily drove to the checkered flag with Jason Sides, Danny Lasoski, Jason Solwold and Haudenschild earning the final transfer spots.
* After leaving Cottage Grove Speedway the series heads down the West Coast to California for the Harvest Classic Sept. 2-4 at Calistoga Speedway in Calistoga and the Gold Cup Sept. 8-10 at Silver Dollar Speedway in Chico.
* The Outdoor Channel will air on Aug. 31 the race at BMP Speedway and Sept. 7 the event at Grays Harbor Raceway.