Tony Stewart/Curb-Agajanian Racing (TSR) driver Donny Schatz and his Bad Boy Buggies/Chevrolet Performance team continue to rack up incredible numbers in the rugged World of Outlaws (WoO) Sprint Car Series. After having their five-race winning streak ended Wednesday at I-96 Speedway in Lake Odessa, Michigan, the team returned to victory lane Saturday at Beaver Dam (Wis.) Raceway after Schatz drove the TSR No. 15 Bad Boy Buggies/Chevrolet Performance J&J from 10th to first in the 40-lap Jim Boyd “JB” Memorial.
“This Bad Boy Buggies/Chevrolet Performance team, you don’t count them out,” Schatz said following his 17th WoO A-Feature triumph of 2015. “It doesn’t matter if we start 10th or 20th. They have got their game face on, they are really motivated right now. They are really on top of things. To get this win is good, especially since we felt like one eluded us Wednesday night at I-96. Tenth is generally a long way back to be coming from in 40 laps. I was pretty confident my crew would give me a car capable of racing our way into contention and they certainly did again tonight. If there is one car in the pit area you want to get in and one group of guys you want to race with it, it’s this Bad Boy Buggies/Chevrolet Performance car and team.”
The week was initially scheduled to consist of three races for Schatz as he led the Outlaws back to I-96 Speedway for the NAPA Auto Parts Rumble in Michigan, originally scheduled for May 30. Schatz rode into the central Michigan 3/8-mile dirt oval with a five-race winning streak. After qualifying third in the field of 28 cars, Schatz finished third in heat three and second to his TSR teammate Steve Kinser in the dash. Kinser led the first 15 laps of the A-Feature and Schatz took command for the next 14 laps. Brad Sweet used a turn-two slide job to take the lead from Schatz, but the six-time and reigning WoO champion still made a number of bids to retake the top spot. Following a lap 29 red-flag stoppage, Schatz surged ahead on the outside line, but the start was called back and Schatz was penalized for starting before leader Sweet. He fell back as far as fifth with three laps to go but still was able to get back to second in the 35-lap A-Feature.
After Friday’s scheduled race at 34 Raceway in Burlington, Iowa was washed out by rain, the tour continued with Saturday’s JB Memorial at the 1/3-mile, dirt oval in Beaver Dam. Schatz qualified seventh and finished third in the opening heat to lock himself into the 40-lap A-Feature. During the first half of the race, Schatz worked his way forward from 10th and spent a lot of laps battling for the fifth position. As the race reached lap 28, Schatz was surging forward, climbing his way into fourth and then, two laps later, he took third and then second on lap 31. The focus then became leader Daryn Pittman, and Schatz wasted little time using a low move in turn two on lap 34 to take the lead. Schatz would not relinquish the point position and scored his second career WoO A-Feature win at Beaver Dam and 189th WoO triumph overall. Schatz also earned his series-best sixth KSE Hard Charger Award after starting 10th.
The remarkable consistency from the beginning of the 2015 campaign and recent run of finishes inside the top two – 13 of the last 15 races – has enabled Schatz to extend his lead in the WoO championship standings to 210 points over Shane Stewart. In 39 WoO races this season, Schatz has 17 wins, 29 top-fives and 36 top-10s.
Schatz and the TSR Bad Boy Buggies/Chevrolet Performance team will look to build on Saturday’s victory when they return to action Wednesday at Lakeside Speedway in Kansas City, Kansas. Following Wednesday’s race, they make their annual stop at Dodge City Raceway Park in Dodge City, Kansas for the Boothill Showdown Friday and Saturday.