For the first time since January, the tenacious travelers of the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series enjoyed a scheduled off-weekend last week, but now it’s back to business.
The Greatest Show on Dirt has five races remaining in 2021, and that sprint to the season-ending checkered flag resumes this Friday night at Lakeside Speedway in Kansas City, KS for the FVP Platinum Battery Showdown.
As the nights run out and the points grow closer, battles continue to heat up with the top-six in the standings all consumed in their own matchup. There’s Brad Sweet & David Gravel fighting for the ultimate crown, Carson Macedo & Donny Schatz dueling for a championship podium, and Logan Schuchart & Sheldon Haudenschild going at it for the fifth position.
Joining the full-time Outlaws in KCMO will be local Brian Brown, aiming to put the FVP #21 and his sponsors back in victory lane at their own race, which he did during the 2017 FVP Platinum Battery Showdown.
Let’s take a deeper dive into the biggest storylines to follow this week:
BRAD VS. DAVID: It’s not over until it’s over, and that’s certainly the case for the 2021 World of Outlaws championship. The gap between Sweet’s Kasey Kahne Racing #49 and Gravel’s Big Game Motorsports #2 currently stands at 92 points with five shows left. It’s a number that can go both ways, offering a comfortbale cushion if managed properly or presenting a worrisome challenge if anything at all goes wrong over the next three weeks. Undoubtedly, Sweet controls his own destiny, but crazier things have happened before.
If Gravel wore to sweep all five remaining races, he would still need Sweet to run 10th or worse in every event to steal the title away. With that being said, any DNF – something Sweet has avoided through 72 races – could drastically alter the outlook and give Gravel upwards of 40+ points in his favor.
For both drivers, they’ll admit 2021 hasn’t exactly been the dream season they envisioned when DIRTcar Nationals fired off the 80-race slate. They want Crown Jewels, the big money paydays that the Knoxville’s, Eldora’s, and Williams Grove’s of the world offer. Although none materalized for those two, the $150,000 check that comes with reaching the pinnacle of the World of Outlaws is still a nice goal to chase.
When it comes to Lakeside, these two championship contenders are opposities. The Big Cat ruled Kansas City at the 2016 FVP Platinum Battery Showdown and owns a solid 5.5 average finish in eight Outlaw outings at the 4/10-mile oval. In those same eight starts, Gravel has yet to crack the top-five and enters with a 10.8 average finish.
CARSON VS. DONNY: A mere four points is all that separates Carson Macedo’s Jason Johnson Racing #41 and Donny Schatz’s Tony Stewart/Curb-Agajanian Racing #15 in the battle for third in the championship.
Macedo, of Lemoore, CA, has been red-hot at times in his first full season with the Missouri based operation led by Phil & Brooke Dietz. The 25-year-old entered with six wins in his first 173 Series starts, then he teamed with JJR and it took him only 70 races to record 10 wins and a monumental $75,000 score at the National Open.
Schatz, of Fargo, ND, has endured more struggles, yet has somehow almost been more consistent than the young Macedo. The 10-time champion has only topped three shows this year, including his historic 300th at Dubuque in June, but does have 42 top-five finishes, almost more than champioship leader Brad Sweet.
The duo is separated by four points entering Lakeside, a track that Schatz has conquered in 2015 and 2019. For Macedo, his results at the Kansas facility has been rather different, placing 12th in both appearances when he was with Kyle Larson Racing.
LOGAN VS. SHELDON: The closest margin throughout the entire standings can be found in the battle for fifth between Logan Schuchart’s Shark Racing #1S and Sheldon Haudenschild’s Stenhouse Jr. / Marshall Racing #17. With five nights left, the pair of 28-year-olds are only two points and one position apart.
After a dismal summer stretch, Schuchart and his Drydene Performance Products crew have found another gear with an average finish of 3.9 in 11 races since September – not counting two innocent crashes that resulted in DNFs. The Hanover, PA native has fallen from a championship challener in 2020 to racing for fifth this year, but don’t let the numbers fool you, he’s the first to point out that Shark Racing is actually better than they’ve ever been.
For Haudenschild, the Wooster, OH native has already established career-highs in wins (8), top-fives (34), top-10s (51), and laps led (293). If it weren’t for all of the ill-timed incidents, Lil’ Haud is most definitely a championship contender aboard the NOS Energy Drink #17.
Both young stars have shown signs of brilliance at Lakeside as both have multiple podium finishes at the speedway. A victory for either would mark their first-ever win at the track and secure the fifth spot in points with four shows remaining.
DIDN’T TAKE LONG: Spencer Bayston and CJB Motorsports will enter Lakeside as the most recent World of Outlaws winner, scoring a statement $15,000 win at Port Royal on October 9 in only their fourth start together. It could be a sign of things to come as the 23-year-old pilot and the Carlisle, PA team have already announced their intentions to join the Series full-time in 2022.
The Lebanon, IN native is one of 12 drivers with multiple World of Outlaws wins this year, both being the first two of his career. He’ll chase a third score on Friday night at Lakeside, a track the former USAC National Midget superstar has yet to encounter with a sprint car.
BROWNIE POINTS: Grain Valley, MO’s Brian Brown will lead the charge for the locals and his sponsors in Friday’s FVP Platinum Battery Showdown. The driver of the FVP Parts, Casey’s General Stores #21 earned one of his five career World of Outlaws wins at Lakeside in 2017, the first year of the FVP Platinum Battery Showdown.
With legend and uncle Danny Lasoski on the wrenches, Brownie has found a bit of extra speed in 2021 with 29 Series starts and 11 top-10 finishes under his belt. The 43-year-old veteran is one of only four drivers to lead laps every year over the last decade, a list that includes full-timers Donny Schatz, Brad Sweet, and David Gravel.
This Week at a Glance – When and Where
Friday, October 22 at Lakeside Speedway in Kansas City, KS
On the Internet
World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series
Twitter – @WorldofOutlaws
Instagram – @WoOSprint
Facebook – Facebook.com/WorldofOutlawsSprintCarSeries
YouTube – Youtube.com/WorldofOutlaws
DIRTVision – DIRTVision.com – Platinum annual FAST PASS for $299 or monthly FAST PASS for $39/month
Around the Turn: The World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series prepare for a Halloween weekend doubleheader with dates at Lawton (OK) Speedway on Friday, October 29 and Devil’s Bowl (TX) Speedway on Saturday, October 30. After that, #AllDirtRoads lead to The Dirt Track at Charlotte (NC) for the NGK/NTK World Finals on November 4-6.
NOS ENERGY DRINK FEATURE WINNERS (14 Drivers):
16 wins – Brad Sweet, Kasey Kahne Racing w/ Mike Curb #49
10 wins – David Gravel, Big Game Motorsports #2
10 wins – Carson Macedo, Jason Johnson Racing #41
8 wins – Sheldon Haudenschild, Stenhouse Jr. Marshall Racing #17
6 wins – Logan Schuchart, Shark Racing #1S
4 wins – Kyle Larson, Silva Motorsports #57
4 wins – Aaron Reutzel, Roth Motorsports #83
3 wins – Donny Schatz, Tony Stewart/Curb-Agajanian Racing #15
3 wins – Kerry Madsen, Tony Stewart/Curb-Agajanian Racing #14
2 wins – James McFadden, Kasey Kahne Racing w/ Mike Curb #9
2 wins – Brent Marks, Brent Marks Racing #19
1 win – Spencer Bayston, Sam McGhee Motorsports #11 / CJB Motorsports #5
1 win – Dave Blaney, Dave Blaney #10
1 win – Tyler Courtney, Clauson-Marshall Racing #7BC
FEATURE LAPS LED (29 Drivers):
333 laps – Brad Sweet
296 laps – Sheldon Haudenschild
292 laps – Carson Macedo
254 laps – Logan Schuchart
241 laps – David Gravel
220 laps – Donny Schatz
188 laps – Aaron Reutzel
97 laps – Kyle Larson
88 laps – Kerry Madsen
66 laps – James McFadden
63 laps – Spencer Bayston
57 laps – Tyler Courtney
39 laps – Brent Marks
29 laps – Giovanni Scelzi
27 laps – Sam Hafertepe Jr.
25 laps – Wayne Johnson
16 laps – Tanner Carrick
13 laps – Colby Copeland
11 laps – Sye Lynch
10 laps – Jacob Allen, Brock Zearfoss, Parker Price-Miller
9 laps – Kasey Kahne, Austin McCarl
3 laps – Ian Madsen
1 lap – Kraig Kinser, Brandon Spithaler, Dave Blaney, Brian Brown
SLICK WOODY’S QUICKTIME AWARDS (24 Drivers):
17 QuickTimes – David Gravel
7 QuickTimes – Sheldon Haudenschild, Logan Schuchart
5 QuickTimes – Brad Sweet
4 QuickTimes – Carson Macedo, Kerry Madsen
3 QuickTimes – Aaron Reutzel
2 QuickTimes – James McFadden, Donny Schatz, Kasey Kahne, Cory Eliason, Giovanni Scelzi, Parker Price-Miller, Lance Dewease, Sam Hafertepe Jr.
1 QuickTime – Kraig Kinser, Jacob Allen, Danny Dietrich, Anthony Macri, Brian Brown, Brock Zearfoss, Rico Abreu, Sye Lynch, Logan Wagner
DRYDENE HEAT RACE WINNERS (45 Drivers)
31 Heat Wins – David Gravel
28 Heat Wins – Carson Macedo
24 Heat Wins – Donny Schatz
18 Heat Wins – Brad Sweet
17 Heat Wins – Sheldon Haudenschild
16 Heat Wins – Aaron Reutzel, Logan Schuchart
11 Heat Wins – James McFadden
7 Heat Wins – Brian Brown
6 Heat Wins – Kerry Madsen
5 Heat Wins – Kraig Kinser
4 Heat Wins – Brock Zearfoss, Jason Sides, Wayne Johnson, Giovanni Scelzi, Tyler Courtney, Ian Madsen
3 Heat Wins – Kasey Kahne, Anthony Macri, Lance Dewease, Brent Marks, Sam Hafertepe Jr.
2 Heat Wins – Jacob Allen, Kyle Larson, DJ Netto, Parker Price-Miller
1 Heat Win – Danny Dietrich, Hunter Schuerenberg, Brandon Spithaler, Tim Kaeding, Jack Dover, Scotty Thiel, Paul McMahan, Daryn Pittman, Justin Peck, Jac Haudenschild, Sye Lynch, Chad Trout, TJ Stutts, Ryan Robinson, Blake Carrick, Ayrton Gennetten, Dylan Cisney, Logan Wagner, Spencer Bayston
PODIUM FINISHES (28 Drivers):
34 Podiums – Brad Sweet
24 Podiums – Carson Macedo
24 Podiums – David Gravel
23 Podiums – Donny Schatz
21 Podiums – Sheldon Haudenschild
18 Podiums – Logan Schuchart
12 Podiums – James McFadden
10 Podiums – Aaron Reutzel
7 Podiums – Kerry Madsen
6 Podiums – Brent Marks
5 Podiums – Giovanni Scelzi
4 Podiums – Kyle Larson, Lance Dewease
3 Podiums – Brian Brown, Anthony Macri
2 Podiums – Kraig Kinser, Cory Eliason, Anthony Macri, Danny Dietrich, Tyler Courtney, Spencer Bayston
1 Podium – Jacob Allen, Justin Peck, Brian Brown, Anthony Macri, Dave Blaney, Daryn Pittman, Paulie Colagiovanni, Austin McCarl, Colby Copeland, Sam Hafertepe Jr.
2021 World of Outlaws Sprint Car Schedule & Winners
No. / Day, Date / Track / Location / Winner (Total Wins)
1. Fri, Feb. 5 / Volusia Speedway Park / Barberville, FL / Brad Sweet (1)
2. Sun, Feb. 7 / Volusia Speedway Park / Barberville, FL / Logan Schuchart (1)
3. Fri, March 5 / Volusia Speedway Park / Barberville, FL / Carson Macedo (1)
4. Sat, March 6 / East Bay Raceway Park / Tampa, FL / Aaron Reutzel (1)
5. Fri, March 12 / Magnolia Motor Speedway / Columbus, MS / Sheldon Haudenschild (1)
6. Sat, March 13 / The Rev / Monroe, LA / David Gravel (1)
7. Fri, March 19 / Cotton Bowl Speedway / Paige, TX / Sheldon Haudenschild (2)
8. Sat, March 20 / Cotton Bowl Speedway / Paige, TX / Brad Sweet (2)
9. Sat, March 27 / Lake Ozark Speedway / Eldon, MO / Brad Sweet (3)
10. Fri, April 2 / I-55 Raceway / Pevely, MO / Brad Sweet (4)
11. Sat, April 3 / I-55 Raceway / Pevely, MO / Brad Sweet (5)
12. Fri, April 9 / Kokomo Speedway / Kokomo, IN / James McFadden (1)
13. Sat, April 10 / Tri-State Speedway / Haubstadt, IN / Carson Macedo (2)
14. Fri, April 22 / Bristol Motor Speedway / Bristol, TN / David Gravel (2)
15. Sun, April 24 / Bristol Motor Speedway / Bristol, TN / David Gravel (3)
16. Thur, April 29 / Jacksonville Speedway / Jacksonville, IL / Brad Sweet (6)
17. Fri, April 30 / I-70 Motorsports Park / Odessa, MO / Brad Sweet (7)
18. Sat, May 1 / I-70 Motorsports Park / Odessa, MO / Brad Sweet (8)
19. Sat, May 8 / Eldora Speedway / Rossburg, OH / Brent Marks (1)
20. Sat, May 8 / Eldora Speedway / Rossburg, OH / Sheldon Haudenschild (3)
21. Wed, May 12 / Lincoln Speedway / Abbottstown, PA / Brad Sweet (9)
22. Fri, May 14 / Williams Grove Speedway / Mechanicsburg, PA / Carson Macedo (3)
23. Sat, May 15 / Williams Grove Speedway / Mechanicsburg, PA / Aaron Reutzel (2)
24. Tues, May 18 / Bridgeport Speedway / Swedesboro, NJ / Logan Schuchart (2)
25. Fri, May 21 / Attica Raceway Park / Attica, OH / David Gravel (4)
26. Sat, May 22 / Sharon Speedway / Hartford, OH / Dave Blaney (1)
27. Mon, May 31 / Lawrenceburg Speedway / Lawrenceburg, IN / Kyle Larson (1)
28. Sat, June 5 / Granite City Speedway /Sauk Rapids, MN / David Gravel (5)
29. Fri, June 11 / Knoxville Raceway / Knoxville, IA / Carson Macedo (4)
30. Sat, June 12 / Knoxville Raceway / Knoxville, IA / Carson Macedo (5)
31. Thur, June 17 / 34 Raceway / West Burlington, IA / Brad Sweet (10)
32. Fri, June 18 / Dubuque Fairgrounds Speedway / Dubuque, IA / Donny Schatz (1)
33. Sat, June 19 / Beaver Dam Raceway / Beaver Dam, WI / Sheldon Haudenschild (4)
34. Mon, June 21 / Huset’s Speedway / Brandon, SD / David Gravel (6)
35. Tues, June 22 / Huset’s Speedway / Brandon, SD / Aaron Reutzel (3)
36. Thur, June 24 / Jackson Motorplex / Jackson, MN / Kerry Madsen (1)
37. Fri, June 25 / Jackson Motorplex / Jackson, MN / Kerry Madsen (2)
38. Sat, June 27 / Jackson Motorplex / Jackson, MN / Logan Schuchart (3)
39. Fri, July 2 / Cedar Lake Speedway / New Richmond, WI / Brad Sweet (11)
40. Sat, July 3 / Cedar Lake Speedway / New Richmond, WI / Brad Sweet (12)
41. Sat, July 10 / Wilmot Raceway / Wilmot, WI / Brad Sweet (13)
42. Tues, July 13 / Attica Raceway Park / Attica, OH / Spencer Bayston (1)
43. Wed, July 14 / Eldora Speedway / Rossburg, OH / Carson Macedo (6)
44. Sat, July 17 / Eldora Speedway / Rossburg, OH / Tyler Courtney (1)
45. Sat, July 17 / Eldora Speedway / Rossburg, OH / Kyle Larson (2)
46. Sun, July 18 / Eldora Speedway / Rossburg, OH / Carson Macedo (7)
47. Tues, July 20 / Lernerville Speedway / Sarver, PA / Brad Sweet (14)
48. Fri, July 23 / Williams Grove Speedway / Mechanicsburg, PA / Sheldon Haudenschild (5)
49. Sat, July 24 / Williams Grove Speedway / Mechanicsburg, PA / Brent Marks (2)
50. Fri, July 30 / Ransomville Speedway / Ransomville, NY / Aaron Reutzel (4)
51. Sat, July 31 / Weedsport Speedway / Weedsport, NY / David Gravel (7)
52. Fri, August 6 / I-55 Raceway / Pevely, MO / Sheldon Haudenschild (6)
53. Sat, August 7 / I-55 Raceway / Pevely, MO / Sheldon Haudenschild (7)
54. Wed, August 11 / Knoxville Raceway / Knoxville, IA / David Gravel (NP)
55. Thur, August 12 / Knoxville Raceway / Knoxville, IA / Brian Brown (NP)
56. Fri, August 13 / Knoxville Raceway / Knoxville, IA / Rico Abreu (NP)
57. Sat, August 14 / Knoxville Raceway / Knoxville, IA / Kyle Larson (3)
58. Sat, August 21 / Red River Valley Speedway / Fargo, ND / Donny Schatz (2)
59. Sun, August 22 / Huset’s Speedway / Brandon, SD / David Gravel (8)
60. Wed, August 25 / River Cities Speedway / Grand Forks, ND / Brad Sweet (15)
61. Fri, August 27 / I-80 Speedway / Greenwood, NE / Donny Schatz (3)
62. Sun, August 29 / Black Hills Speedway / Rapid City, SD / Sheldon Haudenschild (8)
63. Fri, September 3 / Skagit Speedway / Alger, WA / James McFadden (2)
64. Sat, September 4 / Skagit Speedway / Alger, WA / Brad Sweet (16)
65. Sun, September 5 / Skagit Speedway / Alger, WA / Carson Macedo (8)
66. Mon, September 6 / Grays Harbor Raceway / Elma, WA / Logan Schuchart (4)
67. Fri, September 10 / Silver Dollar Speedway / Chico, CA / David Gravel (9)
68. Sat, September 11 / Silver Dollar Speedway / Chico, CA / Logan Schuchart (5)
69. Sat, September 18 / Keller Auto Speedway / Hanford, CA / Carson Macedo (9)
70. Fri, September 24 / Eldora Speedway / Rossburg, OH / Logan Schuchart (6)
71. Sat, September 25 / Lernerville Speedway / Sarver, PA / David Gravel (10)
72. Fri, October 1 / Williams Grove Speedway / Mechanicsburg, PA / Kyle Larson (4)
73. Sat, October 2 / Williams Grove Speedway / Mechanicsburg, PA / Carson Macedo (10)
74. Fri, October 8 / Port Royal Speedway / Port Royal, PA / Kerry Madsen (3)
75. Sat, October 9 / Port Royal Speedway / Port Royal, PA / Spencer Bayston (2)