Column By NICK GRAZIANO / DIRTCAR – CONCORD, NC – Brad Sweet claimed his fourth-straight World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series title this season (2019, 2020, 2021, 2022).
The same sentiment that Super DIRTcar series Champion Matt Sheppard had was shared by Sweet, of Grass Valley, CA, and his Kasey Kahne Racing team.
They entered the weekend with a 16-point lead over David Gravel. However, having won three straight titles, Sweet had said while the intensity level was high he didn’t feel the same level of pressure.
He proved that by beating Gravel all three nights of World Finals, finishing third the first two nights and then fifth on Saturday. He concluded the 2022 season with a 48-point lead over Gravel, five Series wins, 41 top fives and 59 top 10s.
By Sweet’s standards, it wasn’t a great season. But still thrilled to claim another title – demonstrated by his attempt to do donuts in Turn 2 after Saturday’s Feature.
“It’s pretty surreal honestly,” Sweet said. “To grow up around this sport… to get one… it feels like it’s flashed by really quick. I don’t know why that is because it’s been a lot of hard work out here on the road. But every year it just goes by quick and is a lot of work. To sit back and think four in a row, I just would have never imagined to really string something like that together. But this team is pretty unreal because we didn’t even have that good of a year and we’re still champions. I think that says a lot about the resilience of my race team.”
Throughout Sweet’s four championship runs, he’s had the same three crew members making the title hunts possible with their NAPA Auto Parts #49 car – Crew Chief Eric Prutzman, Car Chief Joe Mooney and Tire Specialist Andrew Bowman.
Their hard work has put them in elite company. Along with claiming the biggest championship check in Series history – $200,000 – Sweet also joined 20-time champion Steve Kinser and 10-time champion Donny Schatz as the only drivers in Series history with four or more titles.