Delta Bowl: Finale race report

Hodnett completes Delta Bowl Speedway sweep. TUNICA, MS (October 18) -- Tennessee's Greg Hodnett showed how happy he was to be racing close to home Saturday as he completed his sweep of the O'Reilly World of Outlaws Series event before a ...

Hodnett completes Delta Bowl Speedway sweep.

TUNICA, MS (October 18) -- Tennessee's Greg Hodnett showed how happy he was to be racing close to home Saturday as he completed his sweep of the O'Reilly World of Outlaws Series event before a record standing-room-only crowd at Delta Bowl Speedway.

Hodnett, who also won both the Preliminary and "A" Features of the Outlaws Showdown at The Dirt Track at Lowe's Motor Speedway May 24-25, 2002, led all 30 laps from the pole to become the fifth driver to sweep a double-feature event during the O'Reilly World of Outlaws Series' 25th Anniversary Season. Eighteen drivers have won "A" Features this season.

"This is really special to win like this in front of the hometown fans," Hodnett said. "Last night, I saw a lot of people I hadn't seen in a long time, some who haven't seen me race in eight or 10 years. Maybe they'll think I've learned something. My car owners were gracious enough to let us come down here and race. It's a long way from (their) home, and they don't sell cars here, but they do in York, PA."

Hodnett won his fourth Dash Race of the season for the right to start the series' 65th main event of the year on the pole. The 1993 Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year award winner drove the #12 Apple Motorsports Maxim into the lead as the green flag fell in the "A" Feature. Danny Lasoski, who started outside the front row, raced wheel-to-wheel with the leader through the first two corners, but Hodnett surged ahead in turn three.

Fourth Heat Race winner Donny Schatz won a back-straightaway drag race with Jeff Shepard to take over fifth place two laps later. The leaders were approaching lapped traffic late in the fourth lap when Joey Saldana spun in turn four.

O'Reilly World of Outlaws Series points leader Steve Kinser passed Danny Lasoski deep in the third corner and slid in front of him in turn four within a lap after the green flag replaced the yellow. "The Dude" regained the position on the front stretch a split-second later, only to have Kinser claim the runner-up spot with an inside move between the first and second corners the next time around.

Hodnett was 12 car-lengths ahead of "The King of the Outlaws" when they entered lapped traffic 10 laps into the race. Fast-qualifier Sammy Swindell exchanged fourth place with Schatz during the seventh and 15th laps. Schatz followed the three-time series champion past Lasoski deep in turn two early in lap 16. The 1997 Rookie of the Year claimed third place with an inside move past Swindell in the second corner four laps later.

Shepard drove C&W Motorsports' #35 Eagle around Lasoski high in turn four for fifth place with 6¼ laps remaining. "The Dude" regained the position with an inside move in the fourth corner as they headed toward the checkered flag.

Kinser, who increased his points lead to 139 points over Lasoski with the second-place finish, was driving his #11 Quaker State Maxim through turn four as Hodnett took the checkered flag.

"I had to adjust the fuel in the cockpit to get the car to take off," Hodnett said. "I was working that and not paying as much attention as I should have been getting into turn one, and Danny got a pretty good run on me. I just tried to keep the car straight and keep it moving, and it ended up working out for us. Haud (Jac Haudenschild) and I were side-by-side there a few times toward the end. He was working pretty good there, and once the rubber came in I knew it was going to be tough for anyone to get by me, so I just tried not to do anything stupid and ruin a good thing. If I would have heard or seen someone that I thought was on the lead lap, then I may have moved around a little more to try to block."

Schatz finished in third place, ahead of Swindell, Lasoski, Shepard, Paul McMahan, Jason Johnson, Second Heat Race winner Jason Meyers and Mark Kinser.

McMahan won the Third Heat Race and drove the #11H Vivarin Maxim past eight cars to finish seventh.

Daryn Pittman's 14th-place finish pushed him to within nine points of Saldana in their battle for third place in the O'Reilly World of Outlaws Series point standings.

Haudenschild lost fifth place when he spun midway through the Third Heat Race. "The Wild Child" raced back through the field and was just inches short of passing Aaron Berryhill for the final qualifying position for the main event. Haudenschild won the "B" Feature and finished 21st in the "A" Feature.

The O'Reilly World of Outlaws Series will run $51,600 events at Lone Star Speedway Friday and Houston Raceway Park Saturday.

-WoO-

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About this article
Series World of Outlaws
Drivers Mark Kinser , Danny Lasoski , Donny Schatz , Steve Kinser , Sammy Swindell , Aaron Berryhill , Daryn Pittman , Paul McMahan , Jac Haudenschild , Jason Johnson