SCHATZ CHARGES TO EIGHTH IN KINGS ROYAL
ROSSBURG, OHIO (July 14) – The World of Outlaws (WoO) Sprint car series kicked off this year’s version of “The Month of Money” with the 29th annual Kings Royal at Eldora Speedway. King Donny XXIV and XXVI was hoping to join Steve Kinser and Jac Haudenschild as a three-time winner of the $50,000 race. The four-time WoO champion wasn’t able to join them, but he did qualify for his 17th consecutive Kings Royal and charged from 21st to eighth in the 40-lap race.
“We started the night hoping to make the field and then go from there,” admitted Schatz, who made his first Kings Royal in 1996. “We had to do it the hard way by coming through the B, but got ourselves up a ways. We just didn’t have anything for those guys up front at the end.”
Schatz followed Friday night’s charge from 25th to 14th by turning the 22nd-best lap in qualifying in the 50-car field. He started on the pole of heat two and finished fourth to transfer into the B-main. He started on the outside of the front row and raced away to score the victory and earn the 21st starting position.
It was clear from the beginning that Schatz had the STP car locked in as he raced forward at the drop of the green. He climbed to 10th by lap 9 and restarted 11th two laps later before resuming his run to the front. During the middle stages of the race, Schatz was able to reach fifth and stayed in line until dropping to seventh when the race was halted for a fuel stoppage. Schatz spent the final dozen laps working his way inside the top-10 and came home eighth.
“We’re working on getting better starting positions,” continued Schatz. “I know Kraig (Kinser) started behind us and got to fifth, so it can be done. It’s the first big race and we’ll have to just try and build on the momentum of coming through the field. Hopefully, we’ll be starting closer to the front in the rest of the big races coming up.”
Schatz heads to Lernerville Speedway in western Pennsylvania for Tuesday’s Don Martin Memorial Twin 30s Silver Cup. Schatz won back-to-back Silver Cups in 2006 and 2007 when the race was single 40-lap race with a winner’s share over $30,000. He also was the first winner in the new Twin 30 format back in 2010.
Both the Kings Royal an Tuesday’s Silver Cup will air on SPEED on upcoming Saturday’s.