Hodnett Wins as Kinser Crashes at Hagerstown HAGERSTOWN, MD (May 29) -- Steve Kinser was 1 1/3 laps from winning Saturday's World of Outlaws Sprint Series "A" Feature at Hagerstown Speedway when disaster struck. "The King of the Outlaws"...
Hodnett Wins as Kinser Crashes at Hagerstown
HAGERSTOWN, MD (May 29) -- Steve Kinser was 1 1/3 laps from winning Saturday's World of Outlaws Sprint Series "A" Feature at Hagerstown Speedway when disaster struck. "The King of the Outlaws" collided with a lapped car, and Greg Hodnett led the final two laps to claim the $10,000 first prize.
Hodnett, the 1993 Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year, became the 11th driver to win a World of Outlaws Sprint Series main event this season. Kinser led all but three laps in the Hagerstown and Williams Grove Speedway "A" Features, but surprising circumstances kept him out of victory lane.
""It's unfortunate that Steve got caught up with a lapped car there, but we had to pass a lot of cars to be in the position to inherit it," Hodnett said following his seventh victory in World of Outlaws Sprint Series competition. "I have to thank Apple Dealerships, Cars by Dealers, Hoosier Tires and Capetta Engines. They've all been great for us this year.
"It feels good to be competitive with these guys. It seems like we struggled in qualifying and it kept getting worse from there, but my guys gave me a great set-up for the A main where I could whip it around here pretty good. My owner, Bob Stewart, gives us everything we need, and I'm proud of all the Pennsylvania competitors. They've proven this week that we have some pretty good racing around here. My hat's off the Steve Kinser. He's the best there's ever been. It's really a shame he got caught up over there in turn three, but we'll definitely take the win any time we can get it against these guys."
Hodnett, who started outside the sixth row, was working his way through the field as Kinser and Daryn Pittman battled for the lead through most of the race's second half. "The King of the Outlaws" and Pittman raced around every inch of Hagerstown's semi-banked, ½-mile oval, often changing lines several times during a single lap. Kinser collided with Josh Wells in turn three late in the 28th lap, however, and lost the opportunity to win for the sixth time at Hagerstown Speedway. Pittman, who won at Hagerstown on May 18, 2002, was also involved in the crash and was unable to continue. With seconds after restarting the race at the rear of the field, Kinser's #11 Quaker State Maxim hit the wall and flipped.
"The King of the Outlaws" dominated the event before the crash. He paced the qualifying session with a 118.234-M.P.H. lap, earned the pole position in the main event by winning the First Dash Race from outside the second row and led the first 28 2/3 laps.
Kinser beat Second Dash winner Joey Saldana down the front straightaway as the green flag fell in the World of Outlaws Sprint Series' 18th "A" Feature of the year. Pittman, who started outside the fourth row, passed Lance Dewease, Danny Lasoski, Brian Brown and Chad Layton during the first three laps.
Kinser was approaching lapped traffic late in the sixth lap when his second cousin, Mark Kinser, a five-time winner at Hagerstown Speedway, flipped the #5M Sabko Maxim in turn three. Pittman exchanged third place with First Heat Race winner Jason Meyers twice during the two laps after the race resumed, then drove the #21 Hop & Sack CMC past Saldana deep in the second corner early in lap 12.
Pittman, the only driver racing in the low groove during the race's middle stages, was five car-lengths behind Kinser when they entered lapped traffic during the 14th lap. Pittman raced wheel-to-wheel with "The King of the Outlaws" through turns three and four late in lap 18, but was unable to surge ahead.
Hodnett followed Meyers past Saldana low in the fourth corner two laps later. Saldana lost sixth place early in the 21st lap when he stopped on the front stretch after jumping the cushion in turn four.
Pittman kept pace with Kinser when the green flag replaced the yellow, and challenged him for the lead in turn two four laps later. Daryn slid over the cushion during lap 27, however, allowing "The King of the Outlaws" to open a 10-car-length advantage.
Hodnett restarted ahead of the field following Kinser's crash. Dewease took the high line around Meyers between the first and second corners as the green flag replaced the red, but was half a straightaway behind when Hodnett took the checkered flag.
Donny Schatz, whose crew replaced the engine in his family's #15 Parker Store J&J following the Second Heat Race, passed 17 cars to finish third in the main event. The incredible run pushed the series' 2003 Hard Charger Award winner past Paul McMahan into fourth place in the point standings.
Meyers finished in fourth place, ahead of Craig Dollansky, Kraig Kinser, Brown, Brian Paulus, 23rd-starting Tim Shaffer and McMahan, who started inside the ninth row.