With 20 laps in the books in the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series Boot Hill Showdown finale at Dodge City Raceway Park on Saturday, it seemed like Donny Schatz was a lock for his ninth feature win of the season. On the next lap, as fate would have it, a flat right rear, the same fate that gave him the feature win on Friday, would strike Schatz and hand the lead, and ultimately the win, to Daryn Pittman.
Schatz pulled into the pits under a caution on lap 21 brought out by James McFadden, who shredded a left rear tire. Cody Darrah moved into the second spot and Paul McMahan moved into third.
On the restart Pittman pulled out to a small lead while McMahan jockeyed past Darrah. McMahan fell in behind Pittman and that is where the finished. Darrah held onto third, where he started the race. Jason sides picked up three spots to finish fourth and earn an average finish at the Boot Hill Showdown of third. Tim Kaeding rounded out the top five on Saturday night
Pittman’s win ties him for the second most this season just behind Donny Schatz, and extends his point lead over runner-up McMahan.
“There was a big break tonight, unfortunate for Donny, fortunate for us,” said Pittman, the championship leader and driver of the Great Clips GF1. “We could hang with him the whole time, I don’t think we were going to be able to get by him unless he made a pretty big mistake, which is pretty un-Schatz-like. The track was fast, way better than last night, so I’ve got to give credit to Tommy Estes and the whole Dodge City crew.”
McMahan used a second-place finish to cement himself into second in the championship standings over a pressing Schatz.
“We were a little tight in the heat race and the dash and my crew made some small adjustments in the five minutes before the main event,” said McMahan, of Nashville, Tenn. “We made all the right choices on the race car and the car was pretty good. We got fortunate that Donny got a flat tire and it moved me into third and that helped me because it moved me to the inside for the restart and we were able to get around Cody after his motor stumbled.”
Darrah was able to run a convincing third after a small motor issue cost him on the final restart.
“It’s fun to come here, it’s an awesome facility and it’s just really tough for them to get a good track when you get all this heat and all this wind,” said Darrah, of Red Lion, Pa. “It was a 180 from last night, our results-wise and track-wise. We were pretty close when Donny got the flat and I was really looking forward to trying to get a 1-2 for Kasey Kahne Racing. I felt like when we were in lapped traffic with 1-2-3 in the same corner, I felt like my car was the best of them when we were in dirty air, but we were just a little too free in clean air.”
Schatz was running away in front after starting on the pole of the dash and leading Pittman and Darrah to the checkered flag. His early race stranglehold on the lead looked to be unbreakable until a flat tire sent him to the back of the pack. Schatz would restart the race and still earn a top 10 by finishing ninth.
The World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series heads Limaland Motorsports Park on Wednesday night for the Brad Doty Classic before kicking off the month of money at Eldora Raceway for the Knight before the Kings Royal and Kings Royal next Friday and Saturday night.