Column By: BRIAN WALKER / WORLD OF OUTLAWS – SWEDESBORO, NJ – Following a battle with the PA Posse next month, the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series will trek from New Jersey to Ohio with three races over five nights in the middle of May.
It’s an element from the 2021 schedule that remains unchanged after a week full of thrilling battles and iconic moments.
The stretch begins with a midweek special at Bridgeport Motorsports Park in Swedesboro, NJ on Tuesday, May 17, and continues to The Buckeye State with stops at Attica Raceway Park in Attica, OH on Friday, May 20 and Sharon Speedway in Hartford, OH on Saturday, May 21.
Last year, this same trip saw Logan Schuchart top Carson Macedo in a brilliant Bridgeport battle, David Gravelovercome six lead changes to beat Donny Schatz at Attica, and of course, Dave Blaney’s epic last-lap pass on Sheldon Haudenschild at Sharon.
When the week begins at Bridgeport on Tuesday, May 17, The Greatest Show on Dirt will be making its 10th appearance at The Kingdom of Speed. Since reconfiguring to a 4/10-mile oval, winners have included Kerry Madsen, Shark Racing’s Logan Schuchart with the World of Outlaws, and Dillsburg, PA’s Anthony Macri, who won at the track earlier this week and still chases his first-ever Series victory.
Macri’s fellow Posse member, Danny Dietrich of Gettysburg, PA, earned one of his five career World of Outlaws wins at Bridgeport when the track was in 3/8-mile form. Another central Pennsylvania star to watch will be Brent Marks of Myerstown, PA, who led 29 of 30 laps at Bridgeport earlier this week and has already beaten the Outlaws in 2022 aboard his Murray-Marsk #19.
Shifting to Attica on Friday, May 20, the leading Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year contender, Spencer Bayston, enters as the most recent winner after claiming his first-career World of Outlaws win in last year’s Brad Doty Classic. When it comes to the May date, though, David Gravel and Big Game Motorsports topped the 2021 race after last-lap heartbreak stole the checkered from a dominant Sheldon Haudenschild.
10-time Series champion Donny Schatz is still the winningest Outlaw at Attica, earning four victories at the 1/3-mile to Dale Blaney’s three triumphs. The Tony Stewart/Curb-Agajanian Racing #15 has already collected one win this season and ran second at this race last year with hopes of finding one extra spot to put the Ford Performance 410 back in victory lane.
And then there is Sharon on Saturday, May 21, where one of the most memorable moments of the 2021 season happened. Dave Blaney was one of the biggest World of Outlaws stars of the 1990s, winning a championship and collecting 94 career wins, but it had been 24 years since he was last a winner with the Series.
That changed last May when The Buckeye Bullet drove by Sheldon Haudenschild’s NOS Energy Drink #17 on the final lap to earn his 95th career win. It was a special win for Blaney at his home track which sent the Sharon crowd into pandemonium and made the World of Outlaws trending worldwide.
With another month until this trip begins on DIRTVision, Brad Sweet and Kasey Kahne Racing lead the early-season championship standings with a fourth consecutive World of Outlaws championship on the line this season. The NAPA Auto Parts #49 has only one win (Vado, March 29), but remains the most consistent car on tour with 11 top-five finishes over the last 13 races.
Carson Macedo is now the winningest driver on tour at the moment with four victories aboard the Jason Johnson Racing #41. He sits second in the standings with two-time winner David Gravel behind him in the Big Game Motorsports #2. Sheldon Haudenschild in the Stenhouse Jr. Marshall Racing #17 and James McFadden in his new ride at Roth Motorsports currently round out the top-five in points.