SCHATZ NAMED TOP 410 DRIVER IN 2012
KNOXVILLE, IOWA (Jan. 9) – For the fifth time in his career, Donny Schatz was named Driver of the Year by the North American 410 Sprint Car Poll. The results from a voting panel made up of media members, promoters, sanctioning officials and manufacturers were announced late Wednesday night and are the latest accolades for the 2012 World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series champion.
“It’s an honor to be recognized as the best driver by the National Sprint Car Poll,” said Schatz, who received 20 of the possible 24 first-place votes. “Last year was a total team effort. We had our ups and downs and its rewarding to see that my STP team (Rick Warner, Steve Swenson and Eric Prutzman) was named team of the year as well. We work hard and in the end were able to get the results we wanted. We’re all looking forward to 2013 and hopefully having another fantastic season.”
Schatz, who previously was named Driver of the Year following the 2006-2009 seasons, won the second WoO race of the year at Volusia Speedway Park in February and had three wins by late April, but a winless draught that wasn’t snapped until late July made for a tough early summer. The Fargo, N.D. racer kept working and returned to victory lane in Canada to end July and heated up in August with wins at Knoxville, including both his run from 10th to first in the Speedsport News World Challenge and his sixth Knoxville Nationals A-Main triumph in the last seven years. He won in his hometown of Minot and then picked up a pair of California triumphs to open September. He closed September by becoming the only driver to have five wins in the historic Williams Grove National Open.
A incredible run during the final 30 races of the season, which included 26 top-five finishes pushed him to another WoO title.