By Richard Day MECHANICSBURG, PA (May 18) -- In the six weeks preceding the Wirtgen Shootout, no rain fell and sprint car racing fans from all over the United States eagerly awaited the return of the Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series to Williams...
By Richard Day
MECHANICSBURG, PA (May 18) -- In the six weeks preceding the Wirtgen Shootout, no rain fell and sprint car racing fans from all over the United States eagerly awaited the return of the Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series to Williams Grove Speedway.
Mother Nature teased the capacity crowd at the legendary half-mile oval Friday, making them believe the teams would complete the event. Forty-six cars hustled through hot laps, a qualifying session, four O'Reilly Heat Races, the CHANNELLOCK Dash and the "B" Feature before rain forced officials to postpone the high-dollar main event.
When the Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series returns to "The Grove" July 26-27, the teams will race in two $12,000-to-win main events during the feature program. Wirtgen posted a $5,000 bonus for any Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series driver who wins the 30-lap main event. If a Pennsylvania Posse member wins, he will receive a $10,000 bonus.
Donny Schatz won Thursday's Preliminary Feature, then earned the right to start the "A" Feature on the pole by winning Friday's CHANNELLOCK Dash.
"You can't change the weather," the defending Williams Grove National Open champion said. "We probably had the best chance we've had to win a race here, starting on the pole and the car is absolutely awesome. That's just how it goes. We'll deal with it and go on to the next one (Saturday at Hagerstown Speedway in Maryland)."
Schatz' crew chief, Kenny Woodruff, has prepared the winning car in 11 Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series main events at Williams Grove.
Williams Grove Speedway is one of three tracks the Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series has visited every year since Ted Johnson founded the premier sprint car racing series in 1978. Eldora Speedway and Knoxville Raceway have also hosted Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series events through its first 24 seasons.
The following is the "A" Feature lineup for the Wirtgen Shootout: <pre> Donny Schatz Danny Lasoski Lance Dewease Mark Kinser Craig Dollansky Tim Shaffer Daryn Pittman James Chesson Brad Furr Curt Michael Don Kreitz, Jr. Sean Michael Jason Meyers Brian Paulus Joey Saldana Jeff Shepard Danny Wood Shawn Keen Todd Shaffer Dale Blaney Steve Kinser Andy Hillenburg Sammy Swindell Stevie Smith
Provisionals Paul McMahan Fred Rahmer Randy Hannagan Cris Eash