Schatz repeats with World of Outlaws victory
Donny Schatz continues to add his name to the record books.
The Minot native became the first two-time World of Outlaws winner at Nodak Speedway on Sunday, passing Steve Kinser of Bloomington, Ind., on the 30th lap to claim his 16th WoO win this season.
Trailing Kinser – who has accumulated a series-record 574 wins – throughout the race, Schatz caught a break when Kinser got loose on the inside of turn four with five laps remaining. Schatz said it was his pressure that led to Kinser’s error.
“I made him move up the race track because I kept getting on the outside of him,” Schatz said. “He thought I’d go by him if he didn’t get up there and he got up there and I forced him to change the whole way he was racing. We just capitalized on his mistake.”
Schatz, fresh off a dominating performance in Grand Forks on Friday, opened a sizeable lead after making the pass and knifed through lap traffic to take the checkered flag. Even with 124 WoO career victories, Schatz said victories at Nodak Speedway are always special.
“It means everything,” he said. “This is where I grew up. This always feels the most rewarding when you win at your home track in front of the hometown crowd.”
For Kinser, second place was a tough pill to swallow.
“Every time you lead a race that long, it is (disappointing),” Kinser said. “I just started getting loose in turn three and four and tried to make up for it. I changed my line a little bit and slipped up and got sideways and left the bottom open.”
Kinser was seeking his first win at Nodak Speedway. He finished second in 2010.
Things got off to a slow start for the fastest cars on dirt. Two complete restarts were needed before a lap was completed. The first caution occurred after pole-sitter Cody Darrah had his ignition box fail on turn two. The allotted two-minute stint in the pit area wasn’t enough to install the new ignition box properly, but Darrah caught a break when the Sprints failed to complete a lap before the second caution came out.
The second caution brought out the red flag after Bill Rose’s No. 6 car flipped over on turn four. He was not injured, but didn’t return.
Darrah made an improbable run back into the top five, running as high as third with 15 laps remaining. But he ran into ignition box trouble again and did not finish.
The International Motor Contest Association Sport Modifieds picked up where they left off last Sunday, racking up the cautions and exhausting their time limit during the feature race.
Minot’s Robby Rosselli led from start to finish, holding off fellow Minot native Jeff Hooker to claim the green-white-checkered flag. Rosselli and Hooker were 1-2 the whole way, with the No. 7x of Hooker closing the gap after each lap. But Hooker ran out of time after seven cautions shaved off five laps from the 20-lap feature.
Minot’s Robbie Conway finished third, followed by Jordan Huettl of Minot in fourth and Mike Lemay of Westhope in fifth.
Racing returns to Nodak Speedway at 6 p.m. Sunday for Championship Night. All five classes will be in action.
Mike Kraft covers racing at Nodak Speedway during the summer. Follow him on Twitter @MKraft23-MDN.