By Richard Day
BRANDON, SD (April 29) -- The tough circumstances Donny Schatz has endured in the last year make him enjoy the good times even more. He also appreciates those who have helped him race to new heights with the Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series.
"The credit for this win goes to Kenny Woodruff," Schatz said after passing 10 cars Sunday to win the "A" Feature at Huset's Speedway. "He gave me an awesome race car tonight. I have to thank my entire crew for not getting down or letting me get down while we've been struggling. Parker Stores, Blue Beacon, Featherlite -- Everybody has stuck with me the whole season, and this J&J chassis and Goodyear tires got me a win. That makes up for all the rough times."
The $10,000 victory, Schatz' first this season, snapped Mark Kinser's four-feature winning streak at Huset's Speedway. Eight drivers have combined to win the Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series' first 14 main events this year.
Schatz, the seventh-fastest in the 33-car time trial session, didn't qualify for the CHANNELLOCK Dash. He helped Woodruff fine-tune the #15 Parker Stores J&J during the 10-lap race, then lined up inside the sixth row in the "A" Feature.
Front-row starters Terry McCarl and Steve Kinser raced wheel-to-wheel down the front straightaway as the green flag fell in the 30-lap main event. McCarl, the three-time defending Huset's Speedway champion, surged ahead in turn one to take the early lead.
Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series points leader Danny Lasoski drove NASCAR Winston Cup star Tony Stewart's #20L J.D. Byrider Eagle into third place from outside the third row during the first five laps.
Randy Hannagan lost 10th place when he spun in the second corner early in lap six. Andy Hillenburg steered his #2 Luxaire J&J into the high groove between turns and two to pass First O'Reilly Heat Race winner Brooke Tatnell for fourth place as the race resumed.
Dale Blaney collided with Brad Furr and spun into "B" Feature winner Ryan Flynn and Micah Schliemann in the second corner late in the ninth lap. Hillenburg continued his run toward the front when the green flag replaced the yellow, taking the high line around Lasoski between turns one and two before challenging Kinser for second place.
McCarl was 10 car-lengths ahead of his closest pursuers when he entered lapped traffic midway through the 30-lap race.
Schatz, who passed only three cars in the first 14 laps, raced around Mark Kinser and fast-qualifier Jeff Shepard high in turn two late in the 16th lap. The 1997 Rookie of the Year used a similar move to pass Tatnell for fifth place two laps later.
"The King of the Outlaws" and Hillenburg exchanged the runner-up spot during the 20th lap. Andy surged ahead high in the second corner, but Kinser passed him in the low groove between turns three and four. Schatz continued his run to the front during the next two laps, riding the rim around "The Dude," Hillenburg and Kinser between the first and second corners early in lap 21, then passing McCarl for the lead in the same spot the next time around.
Schatz built a comfortable advantage while Kinser battled McCarl for the next few laps. "The King of the Outlaws" steered his #11 Quaker State Maxim into the high groove in turn three to pass McCarl for the runner-up spot late in the 26th lap.
Stevie Smith, who started outside the eighth row, raced into fifth place during the first 25 laps. He drove his #19 Ingersoll-Rand Maxim into the inside line to pass Hillenburg and McCarl during the 28th and 29th laps to claim third place.
Kinser was racing into the third corner when Schatz took the checkered flag for the sixth victory of his career.
"I didn't think I had any chance at all to win this one," Schatz admitted. "With the track taking rubber, I figured the best we could do was maybe a top 10. I went to the bottom there the first few laps, and it didn't seem like it was that sticky down there, so I decided I was either going to win it or wear it. I got up on top and got my elbows up and started passing some cars, and we were fortunate enough to get to the front."
McCarl finished in fourth place, ahead of Hillenburg, Lasoski, Paul McMahan, Tatnell, Craig Dollansky and Jason Meyers.
Shepard paced the qualifying session with a 123.649-m.p.h. lap around the high-banked, 3/8-mile oval.
World of Outlaws
TIME TRIALS: 1. Jeff Shepard, Upperco MD, Forbrook 5 , 10.918 2. Craig Dollansky, Elk River MN, Karavan Racing 7 , 10.950 3. Danny Lasoski, Dover MO, Stewart/Lasoski 20L , 10.963 4. Mark Kinser, Oolitic IN, Kinser 5M , 10.981 5. Randy Hannagan, Pittsboro IN, THR Racing 1X , 11.022 6. Paul McMahan, Bristol IN, Johnson U2 , 11.050 7. Donny Schatz, Minot ND, Schatz 15 , 11.052 8. Jason Meyers, Clovis CA, DOCC Mtrsprts 20 , 11.098 9. Brooke Tatnell, San Soucy NSW AU, Parsons Racing 6 , 11.135 10. Jac Haudenschild, Wooster OH, Roth Racing 83 , 11.142 11. Danny Wood, Norman OK, Woodburn 21W , 11.157 12. Andy Hillenburg, Broken Arrow OK, Hillenburg 2 , 11.165 13. Brad Furr, Pleasonton CA, Furr Racing 2F , 11.173 14. Steve Kinser, Bloomington IN, Kinser 11 , 11.212 15. Terry McCarl, Pleasant Hill IA, McCarl 24 , 11.213 16. Stevie Smith, New Oxford PA, Smith Racing 19 , 11.216 17. Joey Saldana, Brownsburg IN, Saldana Mtrsprt 17 , 11.243 18. Dale Blaney, Hartford OH, DB Racing 10 , 11.263 19. Tim Shaffer, Aliquippa PA, Helm 11H , 11.285 20. Skip Jackson, Sydney NSW AU, Vermeer 55 , 11.297 21. Gregg Bakker, Sioux Falls SD, 11x Mtrsprts 11X , 11.395 22. Ryan Flynn, Chico CA, Flynn F1 , 11.428 23. Gary DeWall, Jackson MN, DeWall 16 , 11.452 24. Micah Schliemann, Sioux Falls SD, Carnahan R19 , 11.508 25. Jeff Hodgson, Edmonton ALB CN, Hodgson V8 , 11.669 26. John Lambertz, Sioux Falls SD, Lambertz 12L , 11.712 27. Chad Meyer, Sioux Falls SD, Julius 1W , 11.737 28. Wade Nygaard, Fargo ND, Slocum 9 , 11.769 29. Kenny Hansen, Nunda SD.,Hansen 4 , 11.865 30. Gerald Cressman, Hartford SD, Cressman Fam 56C , 11.933 31. Steve Ballenger, Harrisburg SD Parker 53 , 12.013 32. Dusty Ballenger, Harrisburg SD, Ballenger 2D , 12.581 33. Chuck McGillivray, Madison SD.,McGillivray 101 , 12.727
O'REILLY AUTO PARTS HEAT 1 10 Laps: 1. Brooke Tatnell, 2. Randy Hannagan, 3. Brad Furr, 4. Jeff Shepard, 5. Joey Saldana, 6. Gregg Bakker, 7. Kenny Hansen, 8. Jeff Hodgson, 9. Chuck McGillivray,
O'REILLY AUTO PARTS HEAT 2 10 Laps: 1. Steve Kinser, 2. Craig Dollansky, 3. Jac Haudenschild, 4. Paul McMahan, 5. Dale Blaney, 6. Ryan Flynn, 7. Gerald Cressman, 8. John Lambertz,
O'REILLY AUTO PARTS HEAT 3 10 Laps: 1. Terry McCarl, 2. Danny Wood, 3. Donny Schatz, 4. Danny Lasoski, 5. Tim Shaffer, 6. Chad Meyer, 7. Gary DeWall, 8. Steve Ballenger,
O'REILLY AUTO PARTS HEAT 4 10 Laps: 1. Andy Hillenburg, 2. Stevie Smith, 3. Mark Kinser, 4. Jason Meyers, 5. Skip Jackson, 6. Wade Nygaard, 7. Micah Schliemann, 8. Dusty Ballenger,
CHANNELLOCK DASH 10 Laps: 1. Steve Kinser. 2. Terry McCarl. 3. Andy Hillenburg. 4. Brooke Tatnell. 5. Craig Dollansky. 6. Danny Lasoski. 7. Mark Kinser. 8. Jeff Shepard. 9. Paul McMahan. 10. Randy Hannagan.
B FEATURE 12 Laps: 1. Ryan Flynn. 2. Micah Schliemann. 3. Gregg Bakker. 4. Gary DeWall. 5. Jeff Hodgson. 6. John Lambertz. 7. Kenny Hansen. 8. Chad Meyer. 9. Chuck McGillivray. 10. Steve Ballenger. 11. Gerald Cressman. 12. Dusty Ballenger. 13. Wade Nygaard.
A FEATURE 30 Laps: 1. Donny Schatz. 2. Steve Kinser. 3. Stevie Smith. 4. Terry McCarl. 5. Andy Hillenburg. 6. Danny Lasoski. 7. Paul McMahan. 8. Brooke Tatnell. 9. Craig Dollansky. 10. Jason Meyers. 11. Mark Kinser. 12. Joey Saldana. 13. Jeff Shepard. 14. Jac Haudenschild. 15. Brad Furr. 16. Tim Shaffer. 17. Randy Hannagan. 18. Danny Wood. 19. Gregg Bakker. 20. Ryan Flynn. 21. Micah Schliemann. 22. Dale Blaney. 23. Skip Jackson. 24. Gary DeWall.
LAP LEADERS: TERRY MCCARL 1-21, DONNY SCHATZ 22-30
Late Model Stock Cars
Heat #1: 1) 00 Lee Schlombohm; 2) 9 Brad Wollman; 3) 22 Gary Brown; 4) 48 Brad VanVoorst; 5) 29Z J.J. Zebell
Heat #2: 1) 85 Rob Anderson; 2) 82 Howard Baartman; 3) 98 Dan Jensen; 4) 3 Matt Steuerwald; 5) 97 David Kruger
A Feature: 1) 97 David Kruger; 2) 98 Dan Jensen; 3) 9 Brad Wollman; 4) 00 Lee Schlombohm; 5) 3 Matt Steuerwald; 6) 82 Howard Baartman; 7) 175 Ray Feltman; 8) 48 Brad VanVoorst; 9) 85 Rob Anderson; 10) 17 Don Bickett; 11) 20 Perry Tschetter; 12) 29Z J.J. Zebell