Dollansky Wins Spring Nationals Finale By Richard Day MESQUITE, TX (March 10) -- Craig Dollansky won his first Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series "A" Feature at Perris Auto Speedway on October 30, 1999, and enjoyed tremendous success while ...
Dollansky Wins Spring Nationals Finale
By Richard Day
MESQUITE, TX (March 10) -- Craig Dollansky won his first Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series "A" Feature at Perris Auto Speedway on October 30, 1999, and enjoyed tremendous success while claiming the inaugural World of Outlaws Gumout Series championship a year ago.
Dollansky let it be known he will be a force with the Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series in 2001 Saturday when he won the 28th Annual O'Reilly Spring Nationals at Devil's Bowl Speedway.
"Before we started racing this year, we made an announcement we were going to run the full schedule with the Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series," Dollansky said in victory lane. "Last year enabled us to prepare in a lot of different areas and get more experience. This is great competition out here, the best in the world. I think if we work hard at it, I think we can win our share of races."
Dollansky didn't start up front as he did when he won at Perris Auto Speedway. He passed seven world-class cars to claim the $12,000 first prize at the Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series birthplace. Craig, the sixth-fastest qualifier, finished third in the Second O'Reilly Heat Race and earned the right to start the 30-lap main event outside the fourth row by finishing eighth in the CHANNELLOCK Dash.
Two-time defending Spring Nationals champion Danny Lasoski took the lead with an inside move past polesitter Joey Saldana in turn two within seconds after the green flag fell in the "A" Feature. Dollansky used a similar move to pass Fourth O'Reilly Heat Race winner Jason Meyers for fourth place several seconds later. Brad Furr relegated Dollansky to fifth place the next time around, however.
Lasoski was approaching lapped traffic when Meyers hit the inside retaining wall in the fourth corner three laps later. Dale Blaney and Saldana collided on the restart, allowing Furr and Dollansky to each move up a position.
"The Dude" drove the #20L J.D. Byrider Eagle away from the field as the green flag replaced the yellow. He was two seconds ahead of Saldana when an engine malfunction forced Randy Hannagan to stop on the back straightaway the next time around.
Dollansky passed Blaney again while Furr challenged Saldana for second place during the ensuing restart. Daryn Pittman and Mike Goodman collided and flipped in the second corner early in the ninth lap, bringing out the red flag. Danny Wood lost ninth place when he spun to a stop in the second corner on the restart. The red flag was flying again when Brian Paulus collided with Johnny Herrera and flipped in turn two before the leaders completed a lap.
Dollansky and Hillenburg, who started inside the seventh row, raced into second and third place, respectively, when Saldana slid off the back straightaway when the green flag replaced the red. Dollansky started challenging Lasoski for the lead as they approached lapped traffic during the race's middle stages.
Blaney took the leaders out of lapped traffic when his #10 MBNA Maxim hit the wall in turn four and stopped on the front straightaway early in the 21st lap, setting up Dollansky's winning move.
Dollansky steered Karavan Racing's #7 Polydome Maxim into the high groove in the second corner to pass Lasoski for the lead.
"I had been doing some passing up there in turn two earlier in the race," Dollansky said. "Maybe he thought he could take our line away."
Hillenburg won a front-stretch drag race with "The Dude" to take over second place five laps later.
Blaney stopped on the back straightaway late in the 27th lap, setting up a three-lap dash to the checkered flag.
Dollansky quickly opened a comfortable advantage as Lasoski challenged Hillenburg for the runner-up spot and took the checkered flag with 1.833 seconds to spare.
"My crew did a good job getting this race car working. I could pretty much go anywhere in this car tonight. I can't thank all the people behind me enough. It takes a good team to get you in victory lane."
Defending and 16-time Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series champion Steve Kinser passed 10 cars to finish in fourth place. Furr finished fifth, ahead of Gary Wright, Tim Shaffer, Saldana, Mark Kinser and Jac Haudenschild.
The Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series will head to Oklahoma City to sanction the Sooner Nationals at State Fair Speedway Saturday night and Sunday afternoon. WoO