Tony Stewart Racing Outlaw Teams Look To Continue Winning Ways in Indiana
INDIANAPOLIS, Oct. 14, 2010: When the World of Outlaws (WoO) Sprint Car Series stars make their final stop of 2010 in the Midwest, the goal is still the same. Win. That’s the only option for Tony Stewart Racing’s (TSR) Steve Kinser and Donny Schatz in their quest to capture the 2010 title. That journey continues Saturday night at Tri-State Speedway in Haubstadt, Ind.
Kinser, a Bloomington, Ind., native, enters the weekend second in the 2010 championship, 98 points out of first, and is the series’ most recent winner. Kinser drove the TSR No. 11 Bass Pro Shops/JD Byrider Maxim to victory in the New Yorker 25 last Saturday night at Rolling Wheels Raceway in Elbridge, N.Y. It was his ninth A-Feature win of the season and 11th victory at Rolling Wheels. This weekend, “The King of the Outlaws” looks to make it two in a row at Tri-State. Kinser has 22 career wins at the quarter-mile dirt oval, eight coming in WoO action. He won the most recent WoO race at the facility in July 2009, leading all 40 laps of the A-Feature. In his last four starts at the track, he has three wins and a runner-up finish.
Second is the position Schatz finished last weekend. The four-time and defending WoO champion followed Kinser to the checkered flag in New York behind the wheel of the TSR No. 15 Armor All/STP/ParkerStore J&J. It was the sixth time this season the Fargo, N.D., racer finished second. On Saturday, he’ll be vying for his sixth WoO victory of the season and first of his career at Tri-State. In 11 previous starts, he has earned eight top-10 finishes with his highest finish of third coming in July 2008. His best performance at the high-banked southwestern Indiana bullring may have come the last time the Outlaws visited the track late in the season. In October 2004, Schatz won the dash and exchanged the lead late in the race with Kinser before ultimately finishing fourth.
With only three races remaining, both Kinser and Schatz need to make up a lot of points on current leader Jason Meyers. The TSR duo finished first and second last weekend, but Meyers finished third to keep his lead over Kinser at 98 and 106 over Schatz. Following Saturday’s race, the season will conclude with two nights of racing the first weekend of November at the World Finals in Charlotte.
Saturday at Tri-State, the pit gates will open at 3 p.m. CDT with the grandstands opening at 4 p.m. Hot laps are scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. For more details and ticket information, call the track at (812) 768-6025 or visit www.tristatespeedway.com.
Race fans unable to attend this weekend’s races can catch all of the action on DIRTVision.com. Fans can listen live as Johnny Gibson, “Voice of the Outlaws,” calls the action as he does at all WoO Sprint Series events on the DIRTVision.com cybercast, as well as on the DIRT Radio Network. Go to www.DIRTVision.com for more information on all the site features, including updated results from each night of racing, as well as a chat room to interact with other race fans.
Steve Kinser, Driver of the No. 11 TSR/Bass Pro Shops/Chevy/J.D. Byrider Maxim:
You entered last week’s race at Rolling Wheels confident about your chances, primarily because of your previous success there. This week, it’s a similar scenario. With your past performances at Tri-State, your expectations must be pretty high for Saturday night.
“Like I said going into last week, there are places where we always seem to run well. Rolling Wheels is one of those places and we were able to go up there and win. This week, it’s a totally different track but one where we’ve been really well at in the past. I’ve made a lot of laps around that track and it’s a pretty fun place to race. The Bass Pro Shops guys (Scott Gerkin, Gary DuBois and Travis LoGrande) have been at the shop this week getting us ready. We only have a couple of races left, so we know we have to win everything we can, now.”
You mentioned that Rolling Wheels and Tri-State were different. Do those differences change your approach to how you go about trying to win the race?
“Well, Rolling Wheels is about as big as it gets, and Haubstadt is pretty small. On the big track, you really have to start up front or pretty close to have a chance. These cars get going so fast and spread out to where passing becomes pretty tough. This week, you have a little more room for error early in the night. We haven’t qualified the greatest this year and, at smaller track, your chances of racing into the top-two spots of the heat are a lot better. No matter where you race, you have to get your car working the best at the end of the night. We get 40 laps to decide the winner on the short track versus the 25 we had last week. The races are pretty short, so you have to make your moves when you can but, at places like Tri-State, you do have to pick your spots because things can go bad pretty quickly. I’m looking forward to Saturday night. We’re going to do everything we can to make it two in row.”
Donny Schatz, Driver of the No. 15 TSR/Armor All/Chevy/ParkerStore J&J:
Last week at Rolling Wheels, you and the Armor All team were able to put together a complete night. Do you look at Saturday’s race as a chance to continue building toward 2011?
“We are always trying to get better, and I’d say we’ve learned some things here in the past month or so that should help us for next year. We were really happy to set quick time last week and I honestly felt like our car was the fastest one on the track late in the feature. We just didn’t get enough traffic to slow Steve down. He kind of got out there and ran away and I wasn’t able to reel him in. Anytime you can be really good in qualifying and finish on the podium, you have to feel good about being consistent. It was a good night for TSR and we’d like to repeat the one-two finish this weekend, but we want to be the car in first at the end of the night.”
This week’s stop at Tri-State is an opportunity to add another track to your win list. What’s it going to take to come out on top Saturday night?
“I’d say being there at the end is going to be pretty important. I’ve only really started up front once there and that night we were fighting for the lead late in the race. Just about every other time, we’ve had to drive forward from deeper in the field. We’ve really gained on our short-track program and this is another good opportunity for us to see where we stand. You’ve got to be good all night and have things go your way. Traffic is always a factor and, hopefully, we’ll get a chance to make some long, green-flag runs. Our car is really working well right now and we’d like to have a shot at winning late in the race.”