SCHATZ SIXTH IN BELLEVILLE RETURN
BELLEVILLE, KAN. (June 29) – The famous high banks of Belleville hosted the World of Outlaws for the second straight season on Friday night. For Donny Schatz, it was another consistent night and one more top-10 finish. Consistency is fine, but consistently being up front and challenging for wins is what the expectations are.
It’s been that type of season so far for Schatz, who has led the point standings on six different occasions despite only scoring three wins. The other remarkable fact is that Schatz has only qualified inside the top-five three times during the first 32 races of 2012. He qualified 10th in the field of 24 cars behind the wheel of the Tony Stewart Racing (TSR) No. 15 STP/Armor All/Chevrolet J&J and started on the pole of the opening heat race.
Unfortunately, the outside line is the preferred line at Belleville, or at least it has been in most of the heat races the past two years, and Schatz ended up finishing third behind Steve Kinser and Craig Dollansky.
The numbers worked out in his favor though and he started the dash ninth. It was his first dash since Knoxville (June 9) and only third in his last 10 WoO starts. The Fargo, N.D., racer moved from ninth to seventh in the six-lap race and then moved from seventh to sixth in the 25-lap feature event.
He entered Belleville six points behind Steve Kinser in the championship standings and left 13 behind. The final night of four Kansas races is up next when Schatz and the Outlaws head to Lakeside Speedway near Kansas City for a Saturday evening show.