WOODSTOCK, Ga. – For the past 16 years, the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series took a couple of weeks off after the DIRTcar Nationals before jumping into the most intense tour in motorsports.
That won’t be the case this year.
Four days after DIRTcar Nationals concludes, The Greatest Show on Dirt will begin its “Dirty South” Swing at four new events – Feb. 12 at Dixie Speedway, Feb. 13 at Talladega Short Track, Feb. 19 at Magnolia Motor Speedway and Feb. 20 at Revolution Park Speedway.
Dixie Speedway in Woodstock, Ga., has graced the Outlaws’ schedule three times prior; the last time coming in 2007. Mark Kinser won the first two events in 1999 and Joey Saldana won the most recent in ’07.
When the stars of the current World of Outlaws circuit make their way to the three-eighths-mile track, they’ll all be chasing their first victory there.
Sheldon Haudenschild, who had a career year in 2020 with his Stenhouse Jr.-Marshall Racing team, was one of the standouts on three-eighths-mile tracks. He won at three different three-eighths-mile tracks and had an average finish of 3.5 in the seven events.
After a fourth-place finish in points, Haudenschild’s poised to challenge for this year’s championship – against the likes of two-time defending titlist Brad Sweet – and could get a head start on that at Dixie.
“There’s no doubt in any of our minds that that’s where we can be and that’s what we’ll strive for,” Haudenshild said about being in winning contention for the title. “I think as long as we’re winning races and stay consistent there’s no reason we can’t be there at the end of the year.”
The day after Dixie, the Outlaws will make their 12th appearance at the Talladega Short Track – just outside of Talladega Superspeedway in Eastaboga, Ala. – and their first appearance since 2011.
In that last trip to the third-mile track, David Gravel picked up the win.
“Talladega Short Track was a blast back when I was there and I’m excited to get back,” Gravel said.
He returns to the series full time this year to go after his first Outlaw championship, piloting the Big Game Motorsports No. 2 car.
Continuing its trek through the south, the World of Outlaws will make its debut at two new tracks the following weekend. First, on Friday, Feb. 19, the Outlaws will make their debut at the 3/8-mile Magnolia Motor Speedway in Columbus, Miss.
The track opened in 2004 and has hosted several sprint car and late model races since.
“We’re looking forward to having the World of Outlaws race at the speedway and make their return to Mississippi,” said Johnny Stokes, Magnolia Motor Speedway promoter. “It should be a pretty good show here.”
Then, the Outlaws will make their return to Louisiana for the first time since 2004 when the World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series debuts at Revolution Park Speedway.
The state-of-the-art facility in Monroe, La., is a three-eighths-mile asphalt track, but will have dirt put down on it for the event, which it did for a late model event last year.
By the end of the two-week swing, the Outlaws will already have seven races under their belts as they kick off a 90-plus race season.
The early events will set the stage of who the top contenders for the year will likely be.