Bristol Dirt Welcomes World of Outlaws

Kyle Larson takes on the Outlaws in Thunder Valley


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After a 20-year hiatus from the Bristol dirt, the World of Outlaws returned last year, and Watertown, CT's David Gravel promptly swept the weekend in his Big Game Motorsports #2. A veteran of the wicked fast half-mile surfaces, Gravel timed in first and second, won both of his heats, started front row both nights, and parked in victory lane after each Feature.

This weekend, Gravel gets a chance to overtake Sammy Swindell as the winningest Sprint Car driver in Bristol Motor Speedway history with a third triumph. The 29-year-old star enters the Bristol Bash third in points with two victories this season, both of them coming on half-miles at Volusia (FL) and Perris (CA).

DOUBLE DUTY: Two weeks ago, reigning NASCAR champion Kyle Larson finished fourth on the Bristol dirt in the Cup Series. Now, the Team Hendrick superstar is trading his NextGen #5 for Paul Silva's #57 Sprint Car and Kevin Rumley's #6 Late Model as he returns to Bristol this weekend as the only driver doing double duty.

The Elk Grove, CA native is a 25-time winner with the Sprint Cars and two-time winner with the Late Models, the only driver in history to win with both premier Series in the World of Outlaws. He's a NASCAR Xfinity and Cup Series winner on the concrete but still remains winless through eight starts on the dirt. A weekend sweep would mean a $100,000 payday in Bristol.

BEEN HERE, DONE THAT: 10-Time World of Outlaws champion Donny Schatz is set to become the only driver to compete in every one of the eight Sprint Car events at Bristol Motor Speedway this weekend. More impressively, the Fargo, ND native has been a contender to win each of his previous appearances at the high-banked, high-speed 1/2-mile.

In the Features he finished, Schatz's Bristol average is 3.0 with a 2001 victory to his credit. The only race he didn't finish was due to a radiator while he was leading the first half of the race. The Tony Stewart/Curb-Agajanian Racing, Ford Performance #15 was one of three drivers to finish in the top-five both nights last year with his best running coming in second on night two. He'll be going for his second win at the track and second win of the season this weekend.

EN FUEGO: One of several outsiders making the trip to Bristol Motor Speedway this weekend is the hottest Sprint Car driver in the country, Anthony Macri. The Dillsburg, PA native is up to eight 410 victories in 2022 with six of those wins coming in a 10-day stretch over the last week and a half.

The Concrete Kid beat the All Stars at Bloomsburg (PA) and Port Royal (PA) to go along with unsanctioned wins at Port Royal again, Williams Grove (PA), Selinsgrove (PA), and Bridgeport (NJ). He holds an average finish of 1.6 in April as the #39M prepares to hit the Bristol 1/2-mile for the first time this weekend.

BACK-TO-BACK: When it comes to the World of Outlaws tour, Carson Macedo and Jason Johnson Racing #41 enter Bristol with the most momentum following back-to-back wins at I-55 (MO) and Tri-State (IN). The Albaugh entry is currently sitting second in the championship standings (-44) and already owns four wins in 2022, twice as much as any other competitor.

With Philip Deitz on the wrenches, Macedo was impressive in his Bristol debut last year with finishes of third on night one and sixth on night two. The Lemoore, CA native is already the first back-to-back winner this year, and now looks to become the first to record a three-peat in 2022.

STREAKIN' TO BRISTOL: Both the current championship leader in Brad Sweet and current Rookie of the Year leader in Spencer Bayston will take two of the most impressive streaks on tour to the Bristol 1/2-mile this weekend. Both drivers peaked with an eighth-place result last year in Tennessee, and hope for some improvement as they look to extend their stretches.

Since a season-opening trip to the work area which resulted in a 16th-place run, Sweet and the Kasey Kahne Racing, NAPA Auto Parts #49 have been nearly flawless with 14 consecutive top-seven finishes. The Grass Valley, CA native leads the Series in Podiums (8) and Top-Fives (12) with his closest challengers several away.

Although winless, Bayston and the CJB Motorsports #5 team have proven themselves as legitimate season-long contenders in only their first foray together. The 23-year-old Lebanon, IN native is at a career-best six straight top-10 finishes including a season-best second-place finish at Lake Ozark. Both Bayston in the Indy Race Parts #71 and CJB with Paul McMahan at the wheel were top-10 finishes at Bristol last year.

NEW CHANCES: For Logan Schuchart and Aaron Reutzel, this weekend represents a new chance at a Bristol win after coming so close in 2021. Both drivers were David Gravel's biggest competition in stopping the sweep last year but barely missed out on sealing the deal.

Schuchart, of Hanover, PA, controlled the opening 23 laps of last year's finale before engine issues saw $25,000 slip away from the #1S. The Shark Racing, DuraMAX, Drydene Performance Products #1S enters this weekend with their best streak of the year following three consecutive top-five finishes through Missouri and Indiana.

After finishing on the podium both nights last year in the Roth Motorsports #83, Reutzel returns to Bristol this week in the RSR, Toyota Racing, Mobil1 #8. The Texan sat on the pole of this year's season opener and earned a third-place finish at the Volusia 1/2-mile.

1. 49-Brad Sweet (2,116 PTS); 2. 41-Carson Macedo (-44 PTS); 3. 2-David Gravel (-56 PTS); 4. 17-Sheldon Haudenschild (-74 PTS); 5. 83-James McFadden (-138 PTS); 6. 15-Donny Schatz (-142 PTS); 7. 1S-Logan Schuchart (-142 PTS); 8. 5-Spencer Bayston (-170 PTS); 9. 1A-Jacob Allen (-216 PTS); 10. 18-Giovanni Scelzi (-282 PTS).

4 wins – Carson Macedo, Jason Johnson Racing #41
2 wins – David Gravel, Big Game Motorsports #2
2 wins – Sheldon Haudenschild, Stenhouse Jr. / Marshall Racing #17
2 wins – Giovanni Scelzi, KCP Racing #18
1 win – Brad Sweet, Kasey Kahne Racing #49
1 win – Donny Schatz, Tony Stewart/Curb-Agajanian Racing #15
1 win - Jacob Allen, Shark Racing #1A
1 win – Brent Marks, Murray-Marks Motorsports #19
1 win – Kyle Larson, Kevin Kozlowski #57

FEATURE LAPS LED (17 Drivers):
82 laps – Carson Macedo
81 laps – Brad Sweet
71 laps – David Gravel
55 laps – Giovanni Scelzi
27 laps – Brent Marks
26 laps – Sam Hafertepe Jr.
25 laps – Donny Schatz
23 laps – Spencer Bayston
21 laps - Brady Bacon
17 laps – Kyle Larson
13 laps – Cory Eliason
10 laps – Sheldon Haudenschild
9 laps – Dominic Scelzi, Brady Bacon
8 laps – James McFadden
3 laps – Brian Brown
1 lap – Corey Day

3 QuickTimes – Carson Macedo
2 QuickTimes – David Gravel, Jacob Allen
1 QuickTime – Aaron Reutzel, Cory Eliason, Sam Hafertepe Jr, Brad Sweet, Giovanni Scelzi*, James McFadden, Rico Abreu, Spencer Bayston
* Denotes New Track Record

7 Heat Wins – Jacob Allen
6 Heat Wins – Brad Sweet, David Gravel
5 Heat Wins – James McFadden
4 Heat Wins – Carson Macedo, Giovanni Scelzi
2 Heat Wins – Sheldon Haudenschild, Logan Schuchart, Brock Zearfoss, Kraig Kinser, Rico Abreu, Aaron Reutzel, Tyler Courtney, Cory Eliason
1 Heat Win – Donny Schatz, Spencer Bayston, Sam Hafertepe Jr, Dominic Scelzi, Kerry Madsen, Corey Day

11 Dashes – Brad Sweet, Jacob Allen
9 Dashes – David Gravel
8 Dashes – Carson Macedo, Spencer Bayston
6 Dashes – James McFadden
5 Dashes – Sheldon Haudenschild, Donny Schatz, Cory Eliason
4 Dashes – Logan Schuchart, Kraig Kinser, Giovanni Scelzi
3 Dashes – Rico Abreu, Tyler Courtney, Aaron Reutzel
2 Dashes – Brock Zearfoss, Kyle Larson, Kerry Madsen, Dominic Scelzi, Corey Day, Brent Marks
1 Dash – Anthony Macri, Sam Hafertepe Jr, Colby Copeland, Tanner Carrick, DJ Netto, Brian Brown, Brady Bacon

3 LCS Wins – Sheldon Haudenschild
2 LCS Wins – Logan Schuchart, Ayrton Gennetten
1 LCS Win – James McFadden, Spencer Bayston, Brock Zearfoss, Anthony Macri, Mitchell Faccinto, Sam Hafertepe Jr, Kerry Madsen

4 Hard Chargers – Logan Schuchart
3 Hard Chargers – Sheldon Haudenschild
2 Hard Chargers – James McFadden
1 Hard Chargers – Carson Macedo, David Gravel, Donny Schatz, Tanner Thorson, Rico Abreu, Sam Hafertepe Jr.

8 Podiums – Brad Sweet
6 Podiums – David Gravel
5 Podiums – Carson Macedo
4 Podiums – Sheldon Haudenschild
3 Podiums – Donny Schatz, Giovanni Scelzi, Kyle Larson
2 Podiums – James McFadden, Corey Day, Brent Marks
1 Podium – Logan Schuchart, Spencer Bayston, Jacob Allen, Cory Eliason, Aaron Reutzel, Sam Hafertepe Jr, Brian Brown

TOP 10 FINISHES (29 Drivers):
14 Top 10s – Brad Sweet
12 Top 10s – Carson Macedo, David Gravel, Sheldon Haudencshild
10 Top 10s – Donny Schatz, Logan Schuchart, Giovanni Scelzi
9 Top 10s – James McFadden, Spencer Bayston
8 Top 10s – Jacob Allen
7 Top 10s – Cory Eliason
6 Top 10s – Rico Abreu
4 Top 10s – Tyler Courtney
3 Top 10s – Brock Zearfoss, Kyle Larson, Brent Marks
2 Top 10s – Aaron Reutzel, Dominic Scelzi, Kerry Madsen, Corey Day, Sam Hefertepe Jr.
1 Top 10 – Anthony Macri, Justin Peck, Shane Golobic, DJ Netto, Brian Brown, Hunter Schuerenberg, Carson Short, Tanner Thorson

No. / Day, Date / Track / Location / Winner (Total Wins)
1. Thur, Feb. 10 / Volusia Speedway Park / Barberville, FL / Donny Schatz (1)
2. Fri, Feb. 11 / Volusia Speedway Park / Barberville, FL / Sheldon Haudenschild (1)
3. Sat, Feb. 12 / Volusia Speedway Park / Barberville, FL / David Gravel (1)
4. Fri, March 4 / Cotton Bowl Speedway / Paige, TX / Sheldon Haudenschild (2)
5. Sat, March 5 / Cotton Bowl Speedway / Paige, TX / Carson Macedo (1)
6. Fri, March 11 / Thunderbowl Raceway / Tulare, CA / Giovanni Scelzi (1)
7. Sat, March 12 / Thunderbowl Raceway / Tulare, CA / Kyle Larson (1)
8. Fri, March 18 / Merced Speedway / Merced, CA / Carson Macedo (2)
9. Fri, March 25 / Bakersfield Speedway / Bakersfield, CA / Giovanni Scelzi (2)
10. Sat, March 26 / Perris Auto Speedway / Perris, CA / David Gravel (2)
11. Tues, March 29 / Vado Speedway Park / Vado, NM / Brad Sweet (1)
12. Sat, April 2 / Devil’s Bowl Speedway / Mesquite, TX / Brent Marks (1)
13. Sat, April 9 / Lake Ozark Speedway / Eldon, MO / Jacob Allen (1)
14. Fri, April 15 / Federated Auto Parts Raceway at I-55 / Pevely, MO / Carson Macedo (3)
15. Sat, April 23 / Tri-State Speedway / Haubstadt, IN / Carson Macedo (4)

- Trent Gower Photography