HAUBSTADT, INDIANA (October 13, 2019) – After rain washed out racing action on Saturday night at the Terre Haute Action Track, the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series had their traveling crew of speed stars in Haubstadt at Tri-State Speedway, for their 38th appearance in history at the track, to conclude the weekend at the quarter-mile bullring surrounded by cornfields. David Gravel and the JJR #41 team rolled their Engler Machine & Tool #41 Maxim out of the trailer to prepare for some high speed racing. There were 28 teams entered on this beautiful fall day in southern Indiana.
The Watertown, Connecticut native, who now calls Florida home, was the 11th car out for his two laps against the clock in the Mesilla Valley Transportation (MVT)/Durst Inc. #41 Maxim. The track crew always does a tremendous job here at Tri-State Speedway to give the drivers a great racing surface. Gravel rolled out on the track and got his Kistler Engines/All Pro Aluminum Cylinder Heads power up to speed and turned in two solid laps around Tri-State. His second one was his quickest at 13.227 seconds, which ended up being 11th quick overall on the night.
The fans anxiously awaited the three Drydene heat races on tap for the night as track prep took place on the speedway. When the lineups were posted Gravel would start from the fourth position in the second heat race. As the sun was setting in the backdrop, Donny Schatz would be on the pole with Skylar Gee to his outside on the front row. David would share the second row with Kendall Ruble as Brady Bacon, Kraig Kinser, Shane Stewart, Jason Sides and Andy Bishop rounding out the starting order. Looking for the green flag in the 10-lap race, where the top six finishers advance to the A-Main, Schatz drove into the lead before the yellow was displayed and Schatz was docked one row for starting too early. On the restart, Gravel drove the Weikert’s Livestock/Buckwalter Trucking, LLC/K&N Filters #41 Maxim into fourth with Schatz being the first driver to clean air at the front of the field. As the sweet sound of sprint cars exited Gravel’s Schoenfeld Headers, he was in a three way battle with Ruble and Gee for the runner-up position. Ruble got it and started to chase down Schatz. He caught him but could not make the pass for the lead. Meanwhile, Gravel was trying everything and anything to get by Gee for the show position, driving off turn four of the last lap but fell just short at the finish line as Schatz took the win over Ruble, Gee, Gravel, Bacon and Stewart.
After missing out on an opportunity to compete in the DIRTVision Fast Pass Dash, Gravel would have some work to do as he would start from the 11th position aboard the Dissolvalloy Downhole Revolution/Chalk Stix Torsion Bars #41 Maxim for the 40 lap A-Main beside Parker Price-Miller. Polesitter Brad Sweet in his NAPA Auto Parts #49 brought the field to the green with Brent Marks to his outside. Donny Schatz spun and collected Skylar Gee and David Gravel, but Gravel was able to keep his Hoosier Racing Tires going so he maintained his starting spot on the restart with a little damage to his Jonestown KOA front wing. When racing action resumed, Sweet jumped into the lead as Gravel was wrestling his high speed machine running in the tenth spot. With 3 laps in, Gravel made heavy contact with the inside tire marker, almost going over, before coming to a stop entering turn three with damage to his front end. He headed to the work area as the two-minute clock started and the crew went to work. They made the initial repairs and Gravel was sitting there waiting for a push truck before time expired as he rejoined the field. On the next restart, a four car pileup coming out of turn four brought the yellow back out and Gravel headed back to the work area to give the crew some more time to continue repairs. He again rejoined the back of the field for the single file restart and was ready to get another shot . . . with hopefully some better luck. The caution lights went out and restarted from the 21st starting position. Sweet was hustling in the lead and led 6 more laps as Gravel made his way up to 16th when another caution flew, this time for Logan Schuchart who expereinced problems. Sweet chose the inside lane for the restart, which put Gravel on the outside of row eight beside Sheldon Haudenschild. Back under way, they engines roared with Christopher Bell chasing Sweet for the lead. Gravel picked up two more positions on the track to move into the top 15. With 12 laps in the books another caution was displayed for Donny Schatz, Hunter Schuerenberg and Critter Malone who were collected when Schuerenberg spun in turn four. Gravel would restart from just outside the top ten. Sweet would again power into the lead over Bell as Gravel tried to fight his way forward. A few laps before the halfway point, Sweet led Bell as Gravel was running in 11th place. Bell finally tracked down Sweet and made the pass for the lead on lap 16. The Oklahoma superstar was fast and not looking back. Bell would take the win over a hard-charging Sheldon Haudenschild as Kerry Madsen completed the podium with Ian Madsen and Brad Sweet rounding out the top five. Gravel was resilient as he battled battle back to earn a 12th place finish after a rugged night at Tri-City Speedway in Haubstadt.
Mesilla Valley Transportation (MVT); Saich Family; Jonestown KOA; Dissolvalloy Downhole Revolution; Weikert’s Livestock; J.R.C. Transportation, Inc.; Durst Inc.; Maxim Racing; The Boyd Family; Pro Powder Coating (PPC); Waco Metal; High Performance Lubricants, LLC; Team Jack Foundation; Mark Burch Motorsports; Tiger Towing; All Pro Aluminum Cylinder Heads, Inc.; All Pro Auto Reconditioning; AutoMeter; Bell Racing USA; Blackbeard; Brown & Miller Racing Solutions (BMRS); Buckwalter Trucking, LLC; C&R Racing; Chalk Stix Torsion Bars; Cody Monoco Racing; Crow Enterprizes, Engler Machine & Tool, Inc.; Factory Kahne FK Shocks; Fibreworks Composites; FK Rod Ends; Fuel Safe Racing Cells; Greber Racing Components; Hoosier Racing Tire; ISC Racers Tape; Jansen Transportation; K&N Filters; Kaiden Kares; Kistler Racing Engines; KSE Racing Products; LogoDaddy Graphics; Max Papis Innovations (MPI); MSD Performance; RaceDiecast.com; Schoenfeld Headers; Shell Shock Paint; Simpson Race Products; T-FAB Custom Metal Fabrication; Vortex Racing Products; Weld Wheels; Wilwood Racing; and Winters Performance Products.
To stay connected with Jason Johnson Racing (JJR), go to www.jasonjohnsonracing.com.
To stay up-to-date with David Gravel and his success and journey on and off the track, as well as to purchase his gear and merchandise, go to www.DavidGravel89.com.