MEADVILLE, PA - August 20, 2001 - They say a positive state of mind is one of the keys to recovering from injuries and illness. Sammy Swindell, driver of the ...
MEADVILLE, PA - August 20, 2001 - They say a positive state of mind is one of the keys to recovering from injuries and illness. Sammy Swindell, driver of the #1 Channellock Stealth, agrees wholeheartedly. While some may question his return to World of Outlaws competition only a couple weeks after a serious accident, Swindell contends that he is recovering faster and feeling better sooner than he would have if he had not gotten "back to work."
Swindell, a three-time World of Outlaws series champion, sustained broken fingers, a broken kneecap and numerous contusions in a freak accident with a push truck at Lernerville Speedway in Sarver, PA on Tuesday, July 24th.
"I think it's been good for me to get my fingers and my knee doing what they need to do again," said Swindell. "I keep doing all my exercises and working on strengthening myself, but I think driving the last couple races has helped speed my recovery. I've probably been a little more cautious with my racing than normal, but I'm going to make sure I'm moving in the right direction and not setting myself back."
Swindell raced last weekend during a two-night event at Gray's Harbor Raceway Park in Elma, WA. Thursday's preliminary race saw Swindell qualify the Channellock car ninth-fastest out of 47 cars. He then took second-place in the first O'Reilly Heat Race of the evening. After starting 13th, Swindell made a strong run for the lead in the Preliminary Feature by passing four cars to finish ninth.
Saturday's main event began with a 12th-fastest qualifying run for Swindell. With a fast track and a fast car following qualifying, Swindell won the fourth O'Reilly Heat Race of the evening. After starting 16th, Swindell once again managed to pass four cars en route to a 12th-place finish. Stevie Smith swept the event with wins on both nights.
"It's a little disappointing not to win at least one of the nights," commented Swindell following the race. "We've won here at Gray's Harbor at least once each year for a long time. But it's a tight track for passing and starting as deep in the field as I did made it pretty hard to move up. I was probably a little less aggressive than I normally am because of the injuries, too," he concluded.
Some may see Swindell's insatiable appetite for competition and his desire to return as a compromising move. But, more likely in his case, it just might prove to be his best medicine.
Sammy Swindell and the Channellock Racing team head to Portland Speedway in Portland, Oregon for a two-night event on August 24th and 25th. Then it's south to Calistoga, California for the Harvest Classic, August 31st through September 2nd.