ELDON, Mo. – Logan Schuchart extended his World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series championship lead with a wire-to-wire victory Friday night at Lake Ozark Speedway.
Schuchart, who started alongside his Shark Racing teammate Jacob Allen for the 30-lap feature after Allen won the DIRTvision Fast Pass Dash earlier in the night, got the jump on the initial start and led every lap en route to his second triumph of the season.
While he officially led all 30 laps, Schuchart did have to withstand one challenge from Allen, which came on a lap-six restart.
Allen lined up on the inside, while Schuchart elected the top as the control car, and when the green flag waved Allen dove his No. 1a deep into turn one in an effort to steal the top spot away.
It worked, at least for a brief moment, but at the apex of the corner heartbreak struck Allen yet again.
Allen’s car bicycled twice in the center of the turn before finally catching air and going flipping at the top of turn two. His car came to rest and Allen climbed unhurt, but his chances at victory were dashed.
Schuchart held serve over Sheldon Haudenschild on the next restart, and following another yellow with seven laps scored for a spinning Jason Sides, the final 23 circuits went uninterrupted at the third mile.
That green-flag run allowed Schuchart to open up a commanding margin over his pursuers down the stretch, though Haudenschild narrowed the margin briefly in traffic just past the halfway point.
After the No. 17 slipped on lap 23, however, Schuchart ran off to a 1.42-second victory for his 18th career World of Outlaws sprint car victory in his 454th series start.
It was a triumph that carried with it equal parts jubilation and heartbreak for the Shark Racing team, but for Schuchart, it was a statement performance that erased any doubt of his status as a title contender.
“I was a little nervous at points during this night; I didn’t feel very good at certain times, but we were just able to work through traffic like we needed to,” said Schuchart in victory lane. “I figured Sheldon would want to be hanging out up top and bouncing against something, but there wasn’t a whole lot up there. You just had to hit the holes and the ruts the right way and keep yourself … not too tight, but just get yourself through them.
“It’s been a great season so far. These Drydene Performance guys have given us everything we need lately and we’re putting races together,” he added. “This is a good night, for sure.”
Haudenschild’s runner-up finish snapped a three-week skid from Knoxville (Iowa) Raceway and Missouri’s at Federated Auto Parts Raceway at I-55, where he – much like Allen did Friday night – flipped while contending for the win at both tracks.
Lake Ozark provided a much-needed result for both driver and team, but Haudenschild said he never lost confidence in his squad’s ability to get their season back on the right foot.
“I got close in lap traffic. I wanted to be there and close enough to (Logan) to make a move, but he got through lappers really well and I just didn’t have a shot,” Haudenschild noted. “My guys have been working really hard, though. We had a rough week last week and to get on the podium feels good for them. It’s not redemption really, just taking every night as a new night and trying to better ourselves.”
Ten-time Outlaws champion Donny Schatz completed the podium after driving forward from 11th on the grid, followed by Shane Stewart and Kerry Madsen.
Reigning series title-holder Brad Sweet was the night’s KSE Hard Charger, climbing from 25th to finish eighth after a flip in his heat race relegated him to a backup car and forced him to use a provisional to start the main event.
To view complete race results, advance to the next page.