Home / Artic Cat All Stars / EXCLUSIVE: Schatz Makes It Two for Two in ‘Battle Between the Champions’ – Results and Reaction

EXCLUSIVE: Schatz Makes It Two for Two in ‘Battle Between the Champions’ – Results and Reaction

By CAMDEN PROUD

Donny Schatz’s 2018 season could not be off to a better start. After opening it up with a win yesterday evening in the Opening Night of Sprint Week at the DIRTcar Nationals, the 2017 World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series championship driver outdueled the 2017 Artic Cat All Stars champion Chad Kemenah for his second win of the week at Volusia Speedway Park.

Schatz started on the pole for the 30-lap main event after winning his heat and dash to start the evening, but again had to earn the victory after losing the lead to Kemenah in traffic on lap 10.

In heavy traffic throughout the fast paced seven minute long A-Main, Schatz kept Kemenah honest in between the slower cars and with six laps to go, the nine time and defending Outlaw champion was back on Kemenah’s back bumper. With five to go, Schatz made his move on the outside of one and two to take the top spot away and in turn pull away from the Kemenah No. 10 to grab his 18th career win with his boss Tony Stewart’s Artic Cat All Stars.

Schatz described what happened earlier in the race. Playing it rather safe in the bottom rubber, the driver of the Bad Boy Off Road No. 15 left the high road completely open for the No. 10H of Kemenah.

“I don’t think there is any question that I didn’t know what to expect with the race track tonight,” stated Schatz. “I was playing it very cautious. I didn’t want to get on the top because its so slick and I knew it wasn’t going to hold me. I’m definitely going to drive this thing in the trailer tonight instead of on the wrecker so when I got to traffic early I got on the bottom and didn’t really move around much, so then I tried to get on the outside and he got by us.”

Patience was the key for the third winningest driver in Outlaw history as he waited until the closing five laps to make his move on Kemenah on what ironically was the same exact pass that Schatz lost the lead on earlier in the race. The key to victory on Thursday evening was simply waiting to make the right move in lapped traffic, something that Schatz was able to execute pretty much perfectly.

“You just have to bide your time,” quipped Schatz. “Gotta start trying to figure out what you are going to do and the race track started changing again tonight as well, so we just kept ourselves going and wound up getting him (Kemenah) back in traffic, but that’s what it takes on nights like this, you’ve got to get them in lapped traffic and it definitely helped to start that much closer to the front tonight.”

Comparable to Wednesday night, the track was still rather greasy on the top side, but it stayed rubbered up on the bottom, making it a driver’s race once again. The Fargo, N.D. talent was happy to have his crew chief Rick Warner back at Volusia Thursday after Warner missed Schat’z All Star victory one night earlier. Donny Schatz made one thing clear though; he doesn’t follow people.

“I don’t follow guys in the corners, I don’t follow them in or follow them out,” Schatz said. “I got to the first car we lapped and tried to get by him, went to the outside and that’s how Chad (Kemenah) got by us so you’ve got to keep from making those mistakes, but it was pretty greasy up there again. Definitely greasy towards the end of the race, but that’s the way it goes. They decided to redo the track and you just have to live with it. We had an awesome race car and it’s good to have Rick back with us tonight. Happy to have my whole team here.”

Tony Stewart Racing will now open the 2018 World of Outlaws trail with a whole lot of momentum as Sprint Week continues Thursday at Volusia when the Outlaws open their 2018 program alongside a full show for the fourth night of the DIRTcar UMP Modifieds.

Stay tuned to CNY Motorsports (@CNYMotorsports) on Twitter and to CentralNewYorkMotorsports.com for the latest news and updates from the remainder of the twelve day long event.

A-Main (30-laps): 1. 15 Donny Schatz, 2. 10H Chad Kemenah, 3. 49 Brad Sweet, 4. 5 David Gravel, 5. 1K Kyle Larson, 6. 2M Kerry Madsen, 7. 26 Joey Saldana, 8. 13 Paul McMahan, 9. 27 Greg Hodnett, 10. 49X Tim Shaffer, 11. 21 Brian Brown, 12. 9 Daryn Pittman, 13. 18 Ian Madsen, 14. 4K Kasey Kahne, 15. 19 Brent Marks, 16. 5W Lucas Wolfe, 17. 83 Cory Eliason, 18. 14 Tony Stewart, 19. 70 Dave Blaney, 20. 4 Parker Price-Miller, 21. 44 Trey Starks, 22. 7K Cale Conley, 23. 17S Sheldon Haudenschild, 24. 48 Danny Dietrich

Heat 1 (8-laps): 1. 4 Kasey Kahne, 2. 1K Kyle Larson, 3. 7K Cale Conley, 4. 18 Ian Madsen, 5. 14 Tony Stewart, 6. 70 Dave Blaney, 7. 24 Rico Abreu, 8. 40 George Hobaugh

Heat 2 (8-laps): 1. 13 Paul McMahan, 2. 26 Joey Saldana, 3. 49 Brad Sweet, 4. 5W Lucas Wolfe, 5. 19 Brent Marks, 6. 17 Parker Price-Miller, 7. 17 Caleb Helms

Heat 3 (8-laps): 1. 15 Donny Schatz, 2. 5 David Gravel, 3. 27 Greg Hodnett, 4. 9 Daryn Pittman, 5. 83 Cory Eliason, 6. 11K Kraig Kinser, 7. 2 Shane Stewart, 8. 51 John Garvin

Heat 4 (8-laps): 1. 2M Kerry Madsen, 2. 21 Brian Brown, 3. 10H Chad Kemenah, 4. 49X Tim Shaffer, 5. 48 Danny Dietrich, 6. 44 Trey Starks, 7. 17S Sheldon Haudenschild

Dash 1 (4-laps): 1. 15 Donny Schatz, 2. 13 Paul McMahan, 3. 49 Brad Sweet, 4. 1K Kyle Larson, 5. 5 David Gravel

Dash 2 (4-laps): 1. 26 Joey Saldana, 2. 10H Chad Kemenah, 3. 21 Brian Brown, 4. 2M Kerry Madsen, 5. 4K Kasey Kahne

LCQ (12-laps): 1. 17S Sheldon Haudenschild, 2. 70 Dave Blaney, 3. 4 Parker Price-Miller, 4. 44 Trey Starks DNQ 5. 24 Rico Abreu, 6. 11K Kraig Kinser, 7. 17 Caleb Helms, 8. 51 John Garvin, 9. 40 George Hobaugh, 10. 2 Shane Stewart

Time Trials: 1. 21 Brian Brown – 13.660, 2. 49 Brad Sweet – 13.759, 3. 10H Chad Kemenah – 13.814, 4. 9 Daryn Pittman – 13.822, 5. 27 Greg Hodnett – 13.868, 6. 5 David Gravel – 13.884, 7. 4 Parker Price-Miller – 13.888, 8. 2M Kerry Madsen, 9. 17S Sheldon Haudenschild – 13.915, 10. 13. Paul McMahan – 13.929, 11. 149X Tim Shaffer – 13.940, 12. 1K Kyle Larson – 13.975, 13. 15 Donny Schatz – 14.000, 14. 44 Trey Starks – 14.007, 15. 70 Dave Blaney – 14.009, 16. 7K Cale Conley – 14.062, 17. 4K Kasey Kahne – 14.085, 18. 14 Tony Stewart – 14.120, 19. 26 Joey Saldana – 14.124, 20. 18 Ian Madsen – 14.174, 21. 83 Cory Eliason – 14.208, 22. 24 Rico Abreu – 14.228, 23. 2 Shane Stewart – 14.311, 24. 19 Brent Marks – 14.321, 25. 11K Kraig Kinser – 14.345, 26. 40 George Hobaugh – 14.451, 27. 5W Lucas Wolfe – 14.468, 28. 17 Caleb Helms – 14.490, 29. 48 Danny Dietrich – 14.509, 30. 51 John Garvin – 14.571, 31. 5M Max Stambaugh – 14.703

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