Schatz gets back on winning track, earns 4th Brad Doty Classic victory at Attica

Tuesday, July 10, 2018
Contact: Brian Liskai
By Brian Liskai
ATTICA, Ohio – When you win as much as Donny Schatz has with the World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series, a weekend without a victory might seem…well…terrible. The nine time series champion got back to doing what he does best – win features Tuesday at Attica Raceway Park. The Fargo, North Dakota driver inherited the lead on lap 21 when Brent Marks suffered a flat right rear tire, and drove to his fourth victory in the 30th Annual Ohio Logistics Brad Doty Classic Presented by Racing Optics.
Schatz, who now has 13 World of Outlaw wins in 2018, tried an experimental car last weekend in Wisconsin, and the results were finishes of  third and fourth place.
“Woo! We won the Brad Doty Classic again! Hats off to this whole Textron team. After last weekend with a third and fourth I felt like the world was caving in on us. We had an experimental race car, we tried a few things but brought out a normal car here tonight. We got really good results and I’m happy for these guys and happy to win the Brad Doty Classic in front of a full house. Thank you guys for packing the house and making it fun,” said Schatz beside his Textron Off Road/Ford Performance/Sage Fruit/ backed #15.
NASCAR star Kyle Larson, from Elk Grove, California, put on an exciting drive for the capacity crowd, storming from his 15th place starting position to a runner-up finish. Larson was put back to the second row in his heat by World of Outlaw officials for jumping the start which resulted in a third place finish, thus missing the dash and a top 12 starting position.
“We were able to rebound from 15th and get to second. I thought I had have a good shot at Donny running just off the bottom in one and two and I could run three and four a little bit better than him. But it was tough. You had to take care of your tire up there on the cushion and I’d make myself tight and I’d run harder the next lap and get through the middle okay but hanging on exit. Donny is so good around the bottom and middle and then he can still get up on the curb like that and run hard. He’s the best out here. We were just a little bit short. Can’t say enough about Paul Silva, Brandt, Finley Farms, Priority Aviation. It’s fun to race in front of a big crowd; the Brad Doty Classic is always a big race. I’m happy I’ve been able to come the last two years and hopefully get a win in the future,” Larson said.
Brownsburg, Indiana’s Joey Saldana, who won the Dirt Classic Ohio at Attica at the end of the 2017 season, battled within the top three the entire 40 laps and settled for a third place finish.
“When these guys are racing night in and night out they are on their game and right now they’re really on their game because it’s the month of money and they know how important this month is. To bring the Rudeen team in here tonight with the quality of cars that are here to put it on the front stretch is awesome. I can’t thank Kevin Rudeen enough for allowing me to race in a competitive race car and still be a husband and a father. You don’t get to do that very much out here especially with the World of Outlaws. I just really would have loved to have won that. When you get to race the two best guys in the world…it’s amazing that you get to race with them and see them on the front stretch, knowing it was that close. Only thing you can hope for is that they knew I was here tonight and hopefully we can do it again this weekend,” said Saldana beside his Hagar Realty/HEMSaw/Race Rudeen Foundation backed #26.
Carson Macedo and Brent Marks brought the field to green for the 40-lap A-main with Marks holding off fourth starter Schatz for the lead with Macedo sliding back to third followed by Saldana, Rico Abreu and Aaron Reutzel. Greg Wilson coasted to a stop with two laps in and on the restart Marks pulled away from Schatz while Macedo and Saldana battled hard for third. Marks had built a five car length lead when Lee Jacobs stopped with six laps scored. Again on the restart Marks was able to pull away from Schatz while Macedo, Saldana, Abreu, Daryn Pittman and Reutzel gave chase.
By lap 10 Saldana reeled in Schatz and the pair started battling hard for second as Marks was on cruise control. Saldana was able to secure second on lap 13 when Reutzel brought out the caution with mechanical woes. On the double-file restart Marks again pulled away while Saldana and Schatz resumed their tremendous battle for second with Macedo and Abreu in tow. With 25 laps to go Larson had worked his way into the top five. At the half-way point Marks’ lead was beginning to evaporate as the leaders prepared to enter into heavy lapped traffic.
Brad Sweet spun on lap 21 and Marks was forced to the work area with a flat right rear tire, handing the lead to Saldana. On the restart Schatz grabbed the lead but Saldana and now Larson made him work to maintain it. Larson took second on lap 24 from Saldana with Abreu and Macedo battling hard for fourth. Two cars who got the crowd’s attention were Wilson, who worked his way to seventh after his early race mishap, and Sheldon Haudenschild who started 21st and was up to eighth.
Schatz caught the rear of the field with five laps to go and was able to rim-ride around them to maintain the lead, driving to the checkers over Larson, Saldana, Abreu and Macedo.
“Those yellows weren’t really good for me. I needed to be in traffic and force them guys to move around. I did not expect the race track to stay that good on the lip. I thought maybe I’d be able to float the middle. I was really good early and could get the bottom every once and awhile. I thought man we’ll just save our tires and it got to the top and I thought eventually it’s going to get over the edge and it just didn’t. So I had to get up there and go,” Schatz explained.
Attica Raceway Park will be back in action Friday, July 20 on Central Ohio Farmers/Smith Family Foods/ True Alpha Wealth Management Night. In action will be the All Pro Aluminum Cylinder Heads FAST 410 Championship Series Presented by Ohio Logistics; the JLH General Contractor FAST 305 Championship Series Presented by Engine Pro paying $1,000 to win thanks to Griff’s Engines of Sandusky, and the Attica Raceway Park/Oakshade Raceway Late Model Series Challenge.
For more information go to www.atticaracewaypark.comor follow the track on Twitter @atticaracewyprk or on Facebook at and Instagram at attica_raceway_park.

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