Saldana Wins Rain-Shortened Duel in the Dakotas WEST FARGO, ND (July 10) -- World of Outlaws Sprint Series officials declared Joey Saldana the winner of the Seventh Annual Duel in the Dakotas Saturday at Red River Valley Speedway when ...
Saldana Wins Rain-Shortened Duel in the Dakotas
WEST FARGO, ND (July 10) -- World of Outlaws Sprint Series officials declared Joey Saldana the winner of the Seventh Annual Duel in the Dakotas Saturday at Red River Valley Speedway when severe thunderstorms shortened the "A" Feature to 11 laps.
Saldana, who won Thursday's opening-night Preliminary Feature, started on the pole and led all 11 laps before rain, hail and lightning forced series officials to stop the race. The 1996 Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year earned the pole position in the Dash Race by scoring the most points in the preliminary programs. Saldana won the Dash Race for the privilege of starting the Duel in the Dakotas championship feature on the pole.
Steve Kinser, an eight-time winner at West Fargo's high-banked, ½-mile oval, burst into the lead from outside the front row as the green flag fell in the main event. Saldana drove the #2 Volcano Joe's Coffee Maxim around the World of Outlaws Sprint Series points leader in the high groove between the first and second corners to take the lead several seconds later, however.
Saldana entered lapped traffic with a 10-car-length advantage during the fourth lap, only to have Kinser cut his lead in half in dense lapped traffic during the next four laps.
Jason Meyers, who won Friday's Preliminary Feature, lost eighth place early in the 11th lap when the engine in the #14 Elite Landscaping Maxim lost power and stopped in the first corner. An electrical malfunction in the #21 Hop & Sack CMC forced Daryn Pittman, a Seven Factor teammate of Meyers and Jason Sides, to stop in turn two several seconds later.
Thunderstorms hit Red River Valley Speedway during the caution period and officials declared the race complete following a 35-minute delay.
Saldana, who received $20,000 for the victory, also won the May 15th main event at Tri-City Speedway. Kinser finished in second place, ahead of Danny Lasoski, Donny Schatz, Sammy Swindell, Mark Kinser, Brooke Tatnell, Craig Dollansky, Brian Paulus and Kraig Kinser. Paulus drove the #28 Arnold Transportation Maxim into ninth place from outside the ninth row.
Threatening weather forced World of Outlaws Sprint Series officials to cancel the "B" Feature and allow all 27 cars to start the main event.
The Duel in the Dakotas is the 12th event this season to be shortened, postponed or canceled due to inclement weather.
The World of Outlaws Sprint Series will run single-program events at Cedar Lake Speedway Monday and Hartford Speedway Park Wednesday before sanctioning the Knight Before The Kings Royal and the Kings Royal at Eldora Speedway Friday and Saturday.