Outlaws invade Gator Motorplex on April 13 for the Gator Outlaw Bash
by Tony Veneziano
WILIS, TX — March 30, 2017 — The World of Outlaws Craftsman® Sprint Car Series returns to Texas on Thursday, April 13 for the inaugural Gator Bash at Gator Motorplex in Willis, which was postponed by inclement weather on March 4. All tickets from the originally scheduled event will be honored on April 13. The Southern United Sprints will also be in action, making it a full night of all sprint car action.
Over the course of the first 10 races this season, Donny Schatz, the eight-time and defending series has been the driver to beat, picking up six wins. The North Dakota native leads the standings by 50 markers over Brad Sweet. Schatz was victorious earlier this season in the state of Texas at Lone Star Speedway in Kilgore.
Sweet, who is currently second in points, driving the No. 49 for Kasey Kahne Racing, picked up his first win of the season recently in his home state of California. Sweet has eight top-10 finishes, with six of those being top-five performances, while his teammate Daryn Pittman, sits fourth in points, with seven top-10 finishes, of which four are top-five showings. Both Sweet and Pittman were victorious in the state of Texas last year.
David Gravel, who has two win thus far in 2017, including the series’ most recent event at Placerville Speedway in California, is third in the standings. The young driver from Connecticut has eight top-10 finishes, with six of those being top-five performances.
Shane Stewart, who drives for the Larson-Marks Racing team, which is co-owned by current Monster Energy NASCAR Cup point leader Kyle Larson, is fifth in the standings on the strength of seven top-10 finishes as he closes in on his first win of the season.
Jason Johnson, who is a past winner at Gator Motorplex with the American Sprint Car Series (ASCS), scored his first victory of the season on opening night in Florida in February. Johnson, who is the defending winner of the Knoxville Nationals, sprint car racing’s biggest event, held at the famed Knoxville Raceway in Iowa, is just six points out of the top-five in the current standings.
With his next victory, Joey Saldana will become just the sixth driver in World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series history to cross the 100-win mark in A-Feature events, joining 20-time series champion Steve Kinser, fellow Hall of Famers Sammy Swindell, Mark Kinser and Doug Wolfgang, as well as Schatz. Saldana is currently 10th in points as he continues his first season aboard the No. 17 for the Stenhouse Jr. /Wood Racing team.
Paul McMahan, Kraig Kinser and Jason Sides, a trio of veteran drivers will all be in action at Gator Motorplex. Greg Wilson, the reigning Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year Award winner, is back on the road again this season and recently picked up his best finish of the season, a fourth-place effort, at Placerville Speedway in California.
Logan Schuchart, Jacob Allen and Clyde Knipp, are a trio of the younger drivers following the series full-time this season. Schuchart is currently ninth in points, with four top-10 finishes, including a pair of top-five runs in California.
Sheldon Haudenschild, one of the two contenders for the Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year Award this season, earned the best-career World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series finishes last month in Texas at Lone Star Speedway, coming home third. The second-generation driver has five top-10 finishes in the first 10 races of the season. Brent Marks from Pennsylvania is also a rookie contender this season and has earned a pair of top-10 finishes and is just 12 points out of the top-10 in the series standings.
Some of the “invaders” tentatively expected to take on the World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series regulars in the Gator Outlaw Bash, include Texas natives Aaron Reutzel and Josh Baughman, as well as Brady Bacon and Ian Madsen.
Tickets for the inaugural Gator Bash, featuring the World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series and Southern United Sprints at Gator Motorplex in Willis, Texas on Thursday, April 13 can be purchased online or by calling SLS Promotions at 815-344-2023 and at the track on race day. All tickets from the originally scheduled event on March 4 will be honored.