YORK HAVEN, PENNSYLVANIA (July 20, 2023) – After a storm dumped a lot of rain over the speedway after time trials were completed on Wednesday forcing the postponement of the World of Outlaws (WoO) highly anticipated return, they were back on Thursday for another shot at the upgraded oval. For the first time in 31 years, the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series made their return to BAPS Motor Speedway for the Bricker’s Bash at the 4/10-mile, red clay oval to take on the racers representing the always tough Pennsylvania Posse. Over recent years under Scott Gobrecht and Colton Gouse direction at BAPS Motor Speedway, they have done a tremendous job making improvements to the facility. With pit areas located off turns one and a separate one outside of turn two on the backstretch it allows the fans to see the whole track and really enjoy all of the racing action. Following their eighth place finish in the 40th Annual Kings Royal, after starting 21st, Carson Macedo and the JJR #41 team were eastbound and down Mesilla Valley Transportation (MVT) style as they trucked into Central Pennsylvania to battle the Posse. For the second take, the weather for Thursday looked like it might cooperate as it pushed the temperatures into the high 80s with sun overhead throughout the day, but there was an 80% chance of rain in the forecast again at night. The pit areas welcomed back 32 race teams and eager drivers who responded to the challenge to welcome World of Outlaws racing back to the speedway tucked just off Interstate 83 in York Haven, Pennsylvania.
For most of the drivers on the WoO tour, many have never turned a lap at BAPS Motor Speedway. In fact, some of them were not even born yet when the series last visited here. So hot laps took on a whole new level of meaning and importance for them to make sure they were ready setup wise for Low-E Insulation Qualifying. They did get a few hot laps and their time trial laps in on Wednesday night before the rain, but today was a whole new day. The time trial order was redone and established by random pill draw again, which sent Carson out on the track in the Tarlton and Son/Complete Parts & Equipment Solutions/Durst Inc. #41 Maxim as the 19th driver to take time. Unfortunately, but at certainly no fault of anyone’s just the nature of dirt track racing, where a driver goes out is important as track conditions change rapidly. It would be two cars out at a time and Carson would be joined out there by Bill Rose. Carson only had two laps to figure it out, so he did not waste any time getting on the loud pedal and making speed while delicately balancing the slick and the greasy areas on the track. He exited turn four and zoomed by the flagstand as he took the green flag to start the clock on his opening lap. The native Californian was wheelin’ and dealin’ from the comfort of his Fibreworks Composites seat with his custom Sharp Advantage insert as he made his way around BAPS. When Carson crossed the timing stripe to end his first lap the clock caught him in 15.369 seconds. He stayed the course and continued to test himself against the fast moving second hand on the watch the next time around. When he crossed under the checkered flag to end his session, his second lap came in at 15.338 seconds. The better of Carson’s two laps positioned him 11th quick overall in the time trial rundown to start the night. Justin Peck established the quickest lap of the night at 14.979 seconds to earn the Simpson Quick Time Award after going out fifth.
The lineups for the four 8-lap heat races were compiled and posted based on each driver’s best qualifying lap in time trials. That positioned Carson Macedo in row two in the third starting position in heat three where he would start alongside Troy Wagaman Jr. Dylan Norris and Sheldon Haudenschild would lead the field to the green from the front row with Sam Hafertepe, Jr. and Brett Strickler in row three and Danny Dietrich and Domenic Melair in row four. There were only five transfer spots up for grabs out of each heat race, so it was ‘go time’ for every one of the drivers when the green flag waved over each heat race. No mistakes. Just speed and forward progress.
The flagman gave the field the one lap to go sign as the field passed by slowly before the start of the third heat race. The next time by they roared out of turn four and into the first set of turns with Sheldon Haudenschild being the first to arrive and exit. Carson was up on the wheel in the Liquid Trucking/FK Rod Ends/Wilwood Racing #41 and raced by Dylan Norris into the runner-up position. He carried his speed down the backstretch and used the cushion to his advantage to make the outside pass on Haudenschild for the lead exiting turn four to lead lap one. From there he just laid his right rear Hoosier Racing Tire up against the cushion and rode around BAPS Motor Speedway at speed in the Albaugh #41. The driver of the NOS Energy Drink #17 was fast too and not letting Carson get away. Macedo had built a 6 car length lead with the white flag waving and drove to the heat race win with Haudenschild coming home second as both of those drivers locked into the dash. The final three transfer positions went to Norris, Wagaman Jr., and Dietrich.
Earning his way into the 6-lap Toyota Dash, Carson would get the Boltz Family/Mark Burch Motorsports/C&R Racing #41 Maxim started from the fifth position after the redraw that took place in the infield to keep the show moving along. The defending and four-time WoO Champion, Brad Sweet, would start from the pole with the Million Dollar Man, Logan Schuchart, to his outside. Cory Eliason and David Gravel were in row two followed by Carson Macedo and Giovanni Scelzi. The last row was made up of Sheldon Haudenschild and Justin Peck. The field was set and when the exited turn four they pounded the gas pedal and were up to speed quickly. Brad Sweet led Logan Schuchart with David Gravel moving by Cory Eliason into the third position. Sheldon Haudenschild moved by the forty-one down the backstretch, but Carson drove around the outside to retake the position to complete lap one. Sweet led start to finish to earn the pole position for the feature with Schuchart, Gravel, Eliason and Macedo round out the top five. Sheldon Haudenschild came home sixth with Scelzi and Peck completing the finishing order.
There have only ever been two World of Outlaws events held at the track and only drivers with the name “Steve” have come out victorious – Steve Kinser in 1991 and Stevie Smith at the last event raced here in 1992. With no one named “Steve” in the 24-car starting lineup for the 30-lap NOS Energy Drink Bricker’s Bash feature that streak was guaranteed to be broken. But who was going to end the night parked in Victory Lane? Thirty laps around BAPS would be needed to answer that question.
The crews were busy making their final air pressure adjustments and finishing the last minute setup adjustments when the air horn sounded. All of the teams began to roll their speed chariots out on the track ready to put on a highly entertaining mid-week show at BAPS Motor Speedway. The push trucks pulled in behind the cars to assist firing their engines.
Carson Macedo would get the Albaugh – Your Alternative/Boltz Family/Winters Performance Products #41 Maxim started from the fifth position in the starting lineup. He would share row three with the talented and exciting Sheldon Haudenschild in the Stenhouse Jr./Marshall Racing #17 as they paced behind Brad Sweet and Logan Schuchart in row one with Logan Schuchart and Cory Eliason in row two. With fireworks lighting up the sky outside turns three and four the drivers showed their appreciation to the fans at BAPS Motor Speedway. The flagman had the green flag in hand and was ready to unfurl it following the Whiskey Myers four-wide salute to the awesome fans in the Keystone State. It was time to go racing – World of Outlaws style at BAPS Motor Speedway!
The yellow lights dimmed around the speedway as the anticipation in the air rose to a crescendo. The drivers made their way down the backstretch and into turn three before they unleashed the beasts under their hoods and accelerated down the front straightaway. Brad Sweet was the first driver to race through the first set of turns and down the backstretch as David Gravel moved by Logan Schuchart into second place. Carson Macedo quickly moved into the fourth position when the first lap was completed with fellow Californian Giovanni Scelzi right behind.
The track was high side dominant and the field became a bunch of high side hustlers. The leaders were moving at speed as Brad Sweet began to close in to the back of the pack. On lap 9, he began navigating the slower traffic at speed enabling Gravel, Schuchart, Macedo and Scelzi to close the gaps between themselves.
On lap 14, David Gravel moved by Sweet to take the lead in the Big Game Motorsports #2. The next time around Sweet regain the top spot with Gravel patiently waiting for another opportunity. Meanwhile, Carson was running comfortably in the fourth position but Scelzi was not too far behind waiting for any mistakes to steal it away. Also lurking slightly behind but making their presence known was Brent Marks and Sheldon Haudenschild.
On lap 20, David Gravel moved back by Brad Sweet for the lead and this time he was determined to hold on to it for the remainder of the race. Sweet kept chasing in his NAPA Auto Parts #49 with Logan Schuchart pacing behind in the C&D Rigging #1s. Carson Macedo was running in fourth aboard the Albaugh – Your Alternative #41, but Brent Marks was using the low side and putting a lot of pressure on him for the lower numbered position. Sheldon Haudenschild also joined the battle in the NOS Energy Drink #17.
David Gravel would race to the victory to become the first “non-Steve” to win a WoO race at BAPS as he finished ahead of Brad Sweet and Logan Schuchart. Carson Macedo held on to the fourth position as he crossed the finish line just ahead of Marks and Haudenschild. Those three young racers were three wide coming out of the last turn racing for position. Carson came out ahead ending the night with another good run for the forty-one!
Carson and the Albaugh – Your Alternative #41 team will be back in action with the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series at the historic Williams Grove Speedway on Friday and Saturday night for the two-day Champion Racing Oil Summer Nationals. The weather in Central Pennsylvania is supposed to be beautiful, so if you are in the area make plans to come out to the track to watch these stars of the sport entertain at speed. If you cannot make it out to the track, subscribe and tune into DIRTVision as they do a tremendous job covering all the racing action.
A Top 5 Run in the Bricker’s Bash at BAPS Motor Speedway for Macedo and the JJR Team! Photo Credit: CS Productions – Cameron Saich
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To stay connected with Jason Johnson Racing (JJR), go to www.jasonjohnsonracing.com.
To stay up-to-date with Carson Macedo and his success journey on and off the track, as well as to purchase his gear and merchandise directly, visit www.carsonmacedoracing.com.