Lasoski Wins O'Reilly Sooner Nationals for Ailing Car Owner OKLAHOMA CITY, OK (March 17) -- Danny Lasoski and Tony Stewart have a special bond that extends far beyond the usual driver-car owner relationship. Stewart, the NASCAR Winston Cup...
Lasoski Wins O'Reilly Sooner Nationals for Ailing Car Owner
OKLAHOMA CITY, OK (March 17) -- Danny Lasoski and Tony Stewart have a special bond that extends far beyond the usual driver-car owner relationship.
Stewart, the NASCAR Winston Cup star, formed a sprint car racing team for his good friend in November of 2000 and Lasoski rewarded him with a Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series championship in their first year. When Lasoski was invited to compete in the International Race of Champions series recently, Stewart -- who eventually won the season opener -- helped "The Dude" finish in sixth place.
When Lasoski heard Stewart was injured in a crash while leading Sunday's Carolina Dodge Dealers 400, he dedicated the O'Reilly Sooner Nationals at State Fair Speedway to his car owner. "The Dude" passed pole-sitter Craig Dollansky early in the 29th lap on his way to winning his second "A" Feature of the season.
"This one's for my boss," Lasoski said following the second victory of his career at State Fair Speedway. "Tony Stewart got hurt today at Darlington. He's in the hospital and we hope this makes him feel a little better."
Stewart will be glad the $10,000 victory pushed his team to within six points of first place in the Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series point standings.
Lasoski, the second-fastest qualifier in the 31-car field, finished third in the Second Heat Race and earned the right to start the 35-lap "A" Feature outside the third row by finishing third in the Second O'Reilly Auto Parts Dash.
Dollansky, winner of the First O'Reilly Auto Parts Dash, burst into the lead as the green flag fell in the main event. Third Heat Race winner Jason Johnson flipped down the back straightaway late in the opening lap, however, bringing out the red flag and forcing a complete restart.
Dollansky drove Karavan Racing's #7 Vmac/Polydome Maxim into first place as the race resumed. Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series points leader Steve Kinser passed Jac Haudenschild as the green flag fell, and took the low line through turns one and two to pass Mark Kinser for second place early in the opening lap.
Dollansky was eight car-lengths ahead of his closest pursuers when he entered lapped traffic seven laps into the race. Mark Kinser regained the runner-up spot when the right rear tire on cousin Steve's #11 Quaker State Maxim started losing air pressure several seconds later. "The King of the Outlaws" stopped on the back straightaway with a flat tire the next time around. Kinser's crew replaced the tire quickly, enabling him to restart the race at the rear of the field.
Tyler Walker and Tim Shaffer raced past Joey Saldana on the backstretch as the race resumed to claim fifth and sixth place. Michael Dupuy spun in the fourth corner early in the 10th lap, taking the leaders out of lapped traffic.
Haudenschild and Lasoski exchanged third place, while Shaffer, Walker and Saldana continued to battle for the fourth, fifth and sixth positions during the 10th and 11th laps.
Dollansky caught the back-markers again with a 10-car-length advantage during lap 14. Kraig Kinser, who set the single-lap record with a 13.383-second lap around State Fair Speedway's new semi-banked, 3/8-mile oval, opened the track ahead of the leaders when he collided with Dupuy and stopped on the back straightaway the next time around.
"The Dude" drove the #20 J.D. Byrider Eagle past Mark Kinser on the back straightaway for second place as the green flag replaced the yellow. Johnny Herrera's second-corner spin brought out the caution flag early in the 17th lap.
"The King of the Outlaws" raced back through the field, passing Danny Wood and "B" Feature winner Stevie Smith during the 18th and 20th laps to move into eighth place.
"The Dude" was just inches from Dollansky's rear bumper when they caught the back-markers the next time around. Zach Chappell's back-stretch spin took them out of lapped traffic late in lap 22. Walker tried to pass Shaffer for fourth place with an inside move in turn three as the race resumed, but his slide move came up short and caused him to collide with the #83 Beef Packers Eagle and flip. Shaffer stopped with a broken nose wing.
Haudenschild and Steve Kinser passed Saldana for fourth and fifth place during laps 23 and 25.
"The Dude" took the low line through the first and second corners to pass Dollansky for the lead with 5 2/3 laps remaining, and opened a 10-car-length advantage within two laps. He took the checkered flag with a straightaway to spare.
"(Crew chief) Jimmy (Carr) told me (during the 22nd-lap red period) that Steve (Kinser) was getting a great run on the bottom, especially getting out of turn four, so I knew he was coming," Lasoski said. "My guys Jimmy Carr and Todd Splain -- everyone did a great job all day long. I'm just glad I could get the job done for them."
Mark Kinser finished third, while cousin Steve passed Haudenschild deep in turn four to claim fourth place late in the 32nd lap. Stevie Smith raced into sixth place from inside the ninth row. Saldana finished seventh, ahead of Randy Hannagan, Brad Furr and 20th-starting Donny Schatz.
The Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series will sanction the Third Annual Texas shootout at Houston Raceway Park Saturday and Sunday.