2009 World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series Preview: Lucas Wolfe Concord, NC-- February 5, 2009--Lucas Wolfe had a strong start and finish to the 2008 World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series season en route to claiming the Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the ...
2009 World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series Preview: Lucas Wolfe
Concord, NC-- February 5, 2009--Lucas Wolfe had a strong start and finish to the 2008 World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series season en route to claiming the Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year, unfortunately he missed two months of action in the middle of the season after sustaining a back injury in early June.
After having an entire off-season to rest his back and gear up for 2009, the 22-year old from Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania is ready to take to the road again with the World of Outlaws beginning on February 6 at Volusia Speedway Park in the 38th Annual Alltel DIRTcar Nationals by UNOH.
"I am definitely looking forward to getting started and going again," said Wolfe. "We are rapidly preparing everything. It's a last minute thrash."
Click Here to listen to Lucas Wolfe and a number of other World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series drivers as they gear up for 2009.
Despite missing two months of action, Wolfe was able to compete at a majority of the tracks that the World of Outlaws will visit again in 2009. At the time of his injury, the series was in the midst of a Midwest swing, with a handful of tracks during that stretch that will be new to him in 2009. Wolfe was the youngest full-time World of Outlaws driver last season beginning the campaign at 21 years of age, but does not look at his age as a hindrance. He gains priceless experience every time he took to the track last year, racing against the best sprint car drivers in the world night in and night out.
"I think it helps tremendously," he noted of having a year of experience. "We missed the opportunity to go to a few tracks being out during the summer months. For the most part, we should be better when we go back to the tracks that we have been to. We'll go back to those with a better idea of what we need to do and hopefully we can capitalize on that experience and build on that. Hopefully we can beat the weather and injury this season."
Wolfe will have a number of opportunities this season to race on the East Coast, at tracks he cut his teeth racing at, including his home track, the famed Williams Grove Speedway, where the series will make three separate visits in 2009. The series also will compete twice at Lernerville Speedway in Pennsylvania, as well as the series inaugural event at Delaware International Speedway. Additional East Coast races include a return to Virginia Motor Speedway for the second consecutive season and traditional stops in New York at Lebanon Valley Speedway, Orange County Fair Speedway and Rolling Wheels Raceway Park, three tracks that Wolfe always runs strong at.
"There are a lot of race tracks that I am familiar with and you know what you are getting into before you get there," stated the second-year driver. "It's always good to race around home where you race with people that you have raced against in the past. It's always fun to get back around home a good change of pace while on the road."
Wolfe came close to winning a couple of times during his rookie season, including in the series debut at North Central Speedway in Minnesota, where he led early in the race and finished second to Kraig Kinser. He also paced the field early in the race at Cottage Grove Speedway in Oregon in his first visit to the ¼-mile after he won his first career Crane Cams Dash to earn the pole position. He wrapped the season up with nine Top-10 finishes, with three of those being Top-Fives.
"I don't think it will take anything different at this point," he explained of what it takes to win with the World of Outlaws. "We consistently put ourselves in a position to win races in the second half of last season. You have to take advantage when you are in that position. We were in position to do that a numbers of times and unfortunately never capitalized on that, but we were able to gain a lot of experience running against the best guys in the country. Being in consideration for wins at this point in my career is a good thing and hopefully we'll be able to step that up a notch this and get some wins as well."
Wolfe will have his father Randy again turning the wrenches as crew chief in 2009. The father/son combination has worked together for a number of years and look to build upon the solid foundation they established last season on the road with the World of Outlaws.
"For the most part we seem to work pretty well together," he said. "We get along well enough that I think we can keep it successful and hopefully we'll continue to build our relationship this year. We still have a lot of learning to do about the race tracks and how to read them correctly and watch what they are going to do and make the right decision from there. That's part of the learning curve and that is what makes running the World of Outlaws such a challenge."
Wolfe has one main goal for 2009 and that is to visit Victory Lane. Last season was the first time in four years that he did not win a race. Having a year on the road with the World of Outlaws under his belt helped him continue to hone his skills behind the wheel of a sprint car.
"I think winning races is what we need to do right now," shared Wolfe. "To be able to run all the races and be there like we were at the end of last year is important. We have tremendous equipment and have a great opportunity here and definitely don't want to waste it. We're definitely focused on winning races."
The 2009 World of Outlaws season opens on February 6 at Volusia Speedway Park in Florida, with the 38th Annual Alltel DIRTcar Nationals by UNOH. For more information on the event, including tickets, visit: www.dirtcarnationals.com.