SCHATZ FIFTH IN BRAD DOTY CLASSIC
LIMA, Ohio – (July 11) Donny Schatz entered Wednesday’s 24th annual Ohio Logistics Brad Doty Classic as the defending race winner, and he was looking to become the first-ever winner to score back-to-back wins. Schatz gave it everything he had getting as high as second late in the race behind the wheel of the Tony Stewart Racing (TSR) No. 15 STP/Armor All/Chevrolet J&J, but he ended up fifth at the end of the 40-lap thriller.
“I thought maybe I could get second there late in the race, but I just could hold them off,” said Schatz. “We got better as the night went along. Still struggling to qualify, but we are racing good. My hats off to Brad and all the staff at Limaland. They put on a heck of show.”
Schatz qualified 22nd in the field of 43 cars, but changed the direction of his night in heat two. He started sixth and finished second to transfer into the dash. In the dash, he started 10th and climbed to seventh, but finished ninth. By racing into the dash, he improved his starting position by 13 spots and he took advantage of it.
In the 40-lap feature, he quickly started moving forward. He was up to sixth by lap 10 and running fifth when a caution slowed the race on lap 19. He continued to work on the racers in front of him until another caution regrouped the field on lap 34. Schatz charged forward on the restart and slid his way past Stevie Smith for second, but he couldn’t park in front of Smith and David Gravel long enough to hold them off. He swapped fifth with Craig Dollansky on the final lap and beat him back to the line to take the position.
The finish moved him into a tie with Steve Kinser for the lead in the 2012 WoO point standings chase and action resumes Friday at Eldora Speedway with the Knight Before the Kings Royal.