Early season consistency no surprise to Pittman KNOXVILLE, IA (APRIL 24) -- Daryn Pittman and the Sherdon Motorsports team set some lofty goals for the 25th anniversary O'Reilly World of Outlaws (WoO) season. After 18 starts, the 24 year-old ...
Early season consistency no surprise to Pittman
KNOXVILLE, IA (APRIL 24) -- Daryn Pittman and the Sherdon Motorsports team set some lofty goals for the 25th anniversary O'Reilly World of Outlaws (WoO) season. After 18 starts, the 24 year-old sprint car star is just one point out of fourth position in the WoO point standings heading into this weekend's two-night program at Knoxville Raceway.
"I think if you look at the big picture the season has been real good so far," said Pittman, who drives the #21 Hop-N-Sac/Mopar/ Gaerte Engines J&J. "We know we have to get better in certain areas like qualifying, but its all coming together. We've been really strong racing, but we just haven't started where we need to. We're getting closer to having everything go our way. If we can get an opportunity to race for a victory, I'm confident we'll pull through."
Following his career-best World of Outlaws campaign in 2002, in which he won a career-high six "A" features, he became the first American sprint car driver to win the coveted World Series Sprintcar championship in Australia in January. With his confidence at an all-time high the 2001 WoO Gumout Series champion set out to finish this year's WoO season in the top five and also hoped to win at least 10 feature events.
"I don't think anyone expected us to be where we are in the standings except the guys on this team," continued Pittman, who has four top five finishes and 13 top tens in 18 starts. "We've been really consistent and that's the key to winning a championship. You have to learn how to be there every night and that's what our goal was coming into the season.
"We wanted to finish in the top five and right now we're on track to do that. Every night the team shoots for a top five finish. If we don't finish in the top ten, we're all disappointed. We make it a point to go over everything after each race and talk about how we could have been better."
Pittman and his Sherdon Motorsports teammates have been doing a lot of learning early in the season. Pittman is using a newly designed Mopar Engine built by Gaerte Engines. The team has been really pleased with the motor's performance and now they're trying to fine tune all the details.
"I think last Saturday we really learned a lot at Eldora about this Mopar," continued Pittman. "We're not working with 20 years experience like we were before, so learning how to fuel it, the gear ratio, and everything else has been a challenge. In this whole process, there has been a big learning curve. I know the motor program has reached the level that we had before and there's plenty of room for improvement."
Pittman is looking forward to his visit this weekend to legendary Knoxville Raceway. Pittman claimed the 1998 Rookie of the Nationals, but is still trying to earn his first podium finish at the famous half-mile dirt oval.
"We haven't had the kind of results we want yet, but I really love racing at Knoxville," said Pittman. "Knoxville is such a great place to race. You can run high, low, in the middle wherever. I know since we've been running J&J's (2000) that I've been comfortable running anywhere on the track. Those cars just feel really good going around the big high-speed tracks.
"Honestly, I've been looking forward to this weekend for the past two weeks. That's kind of unusual with us racing so much to look ahead to anything, but Knoxville's been on my mind quite a bit. I hope we have a great couple of nights."
Both races (Friday and Saturday) will be broadcasted live by SCN (Sprint Car Network) and you can find out more about the broadcast by visiting www.sprintcarnet.com.