View from the Stands (11/11/2013) by Eric Arnold, Knoxville Raceway Blogger & Twitter Commentator
The World of Outlaws season has come to an end. It was good to see some of our Knoxville Regulars make the trip to Charlotte for the World Finals. Brian Brown had a good showing with a couple of top ten’s, Ian Madsen, Mark Dobmeier, Justin Henderson, and Wayne Johnson also made the trip. The World Finals has turned into a big three day event where the dirt track racing world comes together in the center of the racing business industry. I would even consider it the fifth “major” in sprint car racing with the four majors being the Knoxville Nationals, Eldora Kings Royal, Williams Grove National Open, and the Chico Gold Cup. I ponied up to watch the DirtVision broadcast which I hadn’t done before and I was impressed with their live PPV coverage.
BLOG-View from the Stands (10/10/2013)
by Eric Arnold, Knoxville Raceway Blogger & Twitter Commentator
The World of Outlaws season is coming to a close now with only 3 nights of racing left. Daryn Pittman has essentially wrapped up the title. Mathematically Donny Schatz is still alive, but unless he wins the last 3 races and Pittman has a couple of 20th place finishes, it’s over. Schatz has won 21 features and Pittman has won 8. This has stirred up some controversy about the WoO point system, but I feel the point system is fine as is. The season long battle is just that. It should reward consistency over the long haul of 70 plus nights of racing. Pittman has not won a feature event since July 23 at Rolling Wheels. That is nearly 3 months and 22 races ago. Ironically the WoO goes back to Rolling Wheels this Saturday night before the season ends at Charlotte.
View from the Stands (8/11/2013) by Eric Arnold, Knoxville Raceway Blogger & Twitter Commentator Donny Schatz… wow. From fourth in the B-Main, you win that, then start 21st in the A-Main and are leading by lap 40. Are you kidding me? The legend of Donny Schatz just grew even more. To win seven of the last eight Knoxville Nationals is mind blowing. Just call him Donny Knoxville, Super Schatz, or Sheriff Schatz. He should have a Superman logo on the front of his uniform.
2013 Knoxville Nationals Preview
(8/5/2013) by Eric Arnold, Knoxville Raceway Blogger & Twitter Commentator
The Knoxville Nationals is one of the hardest races to win, the most prestigious, and pays the most money, $150,000 to the winner! I study a lot of stats, data, prior year finishes, and try to account how their current season is progressing to come up with my power rankings and predictions. As I look into my crystal ball, this is how I break down the field.
View from the Stands(7/29/2013) by Eric Arnold, Knoxville Raceway Blogger & Twitter Commentator
Brown & Kaeding (Ryan Northcote photo)
I can remember 2004 when Terry McCarl was a weekly competitor and there were a couple of nights where he just blew the field away and won features in dominating fashion. He was in a completely different gear than the rest of the field, and I just knew he was going to be up front at the Nationals that year. T-Mac was, and he went on to lead the first fifteen laps of the Nationals and finish fifth that year. I haven’t seen that kind of performance, or had that same feeling since then from a Knoxville Regular, until I saw Brian Brown this week. HOLY COW! Brian Brown was FAST in the 410 feature, and probably would have won the 360 feature if he didn’t have to pull in for the throttle sticking wide open in that race. Brown and his team have to be anxious for Nationals. I’m having a heckuva time trying to decide who to pick to win the 360 Nationals now. Brown or Shane Stewart? I’m giving the edge to Stewart, but only because he has won the race the past three years. It’s a toss up between these two guys and I will be shocked if anyone other than these two drivers wins.
View from the Stands (7/16/2013) by Eric Arnold, Knoxville Raceway Blogger & Twitter Commentator
Bronson Maeschen (Brandon Anderson photo)
Bronson Maeschen pulls into victory lane. (Brandon Anderson photo)
Selvage and Maeschen race for the lead. (Brandon Anderson photo)
Bronson Maeschen…. 410 point leader! Bronson has matured as a driver, a very good driver, and after six top fives, finishing second twice this season, and almost winning last week, he wins the feature this week and it works out he has a fifty point lead over Ian Madsen, and 115 point lead over third place Terry McCarl. If Maeschen wins the title, he would be the first resident of Marion County to win the Knoxville track championship since Mike Brooks in 1980, and I believe Earl Wagner is the only other Marion County driver to do that. Bronson has been consistent all season. He has seven top five’s, nine top ten’s, and two quick times. If Bronson just keeps doing what he has done all season, I think he gets it done. With only four more weekly races left, it’s going to be a lot of fun to watch! I asked him what he thought of being the point leader in the pits afterwards and he said, “I guess the target is on my back now huh.” Good answer. Being the point leader doesn’t mean much until the end of the season.
View from the Stands (6/19/2013) by Eric Arnold, Knoxville Raceway Blogger & Twitter Commentator
Donny Schatz on his way to win number 7 this season.
Well Donny Schatz did it again. He will be the man to beat at the Knoxville Nationals. I’m not sure if anyone can beat him other than “lady luck” right now. Brian Brown is close to having Schatz’ number at Knoxville. Brown was leading and was pulling away at one point, but Schatz was closing a bit in lapped traffic, and if a lapped car hadn’t suddenly slowed and been in his way I think Brown might have been able to beat Schatz. Continue reading →
View from the Stands (6/12/2013) by Eric Arnold, Knoxville Raceway Blogger & Twitter Commentator
The World of Outlaws series comes to Knoxville this Saturday night. This will be the last time we see the Outlaws at Knoxville until August 7-10 for the Nationals. We will likely see a few Outlaws show up for the Capitani Classic on August 4 however. At the May 11 Outlaws event Donny Schatz walked away with the win and he has since been getting better on the tour and is currently third in the point standings and rising. In the past ten WoO events Schatz has the best average finish at 5.0, while point leader Daryn Pittman has an average of 6.8, and Paul McMahon at 7.1. I look for Schatz to be the favorite this weekend and at the Nationals.
View from the Stands (5/14/2013) by Eric Arnold, Knoxville Raceway Blogger & Twitter Commentator
For the past decade the Mayor of Knoxville Raceway has been Donny Schatz, and he showed again this past Saturday that to win at Knoxville, you have to go through him. Believe it or not, Schatz’ win was only his sixth career World of Outlaws feature win at the historic half-mile. He has been nearly perfect at the Nationals over the past decade, but hasn’t parked his #15 in victory lane for a WoO win at Knoxville since May 2, 2009.
View from the Stands (5/6/2013) by Eric Arnold, Knoxville Raceway Blogger & Twitter Commentator
If you have the racing blues due to the bad weather like I do, at least this coming Saturday, May 11 the World of Outlaws will be at Knoxville Raceway! The Outlaws are headlined by five time series champion Donny Schatz and twenty time champion Steve Kinser.
Schatz is off to a slow start by his standards currently sitting third in the series point standings, but has two wins. His first ten races he had an average finish of 9.3, and his last nine that has lowered to 6.7. Once Schatz and crew chief Ricky Warner dial-in the new Hoosier tires they will tough to beat as usual. Schatz is the defending and five time champion of the Knoxville Nationals and will be the favorite on May 11. Season Stats: Wins-2, Top five-7, Top ten-13, Avg, finish-8.7.