Sweet Soars to First 2018 Win at Salina Highbanks
A win at Salina Highbanks Speedway keeps Brad Sweet in the hunt for the World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series points lead heading into a busy month of May.
After a consistent weekend in Texas, Sweet and the NAPA AUTO PARTS team pulled into Lake Ozark Speedway in Eldon, Missouri, with confidence.
With a field of 24 cars, Sweet went out late in qualifying and settled for a 21st quick time. He started seventh in the third heat race and within the first four laps worked his NAPA AUTO PARTS car up to the third position, where he ultimately finished.
With heat race positions being so important, the four-spot gain allowed the No. 49 team to start ninth in the 40-lap feature event. The green flag waved and Sweet got tangled with a fellow competitor, giving up the ninth position and falling back to 19th on the first lap. Luckily, Sweet and his NAPA AUTO PARTS team found some speed and were able to get working towards the front. Two yellow flags gave the team the advantage of bunching up the field. Sweet ultimately finished the race in sixth.
On Saturday night, a field of 20 cars showed up at Salina Highbanks Speedway in Salina, Oklahoma. Sweet went out for qualifying and finished in the seventh spot. With three heats on tap, Sweet started inside the second row. He powered below fellow competitor Cory Eliason to finish second and get the NAPA AUTO PARTS team into the dash, where he finished fifth.
After the field took the green flag, it was immediately followed with a yellow flag for the pole sitter. This moved the No. 49 team into the fourth starting spot during the complete restart. With 30 laps to go, Sweet powered to the second spot and within three laps, Sweet was stalking leader Donny Schatz. The NAPA AUTO PARTS car hooked the top of the speedway into 1 & 2 and gained serious speed to pass Schatz. A yellow with seven to go bunched the field back up and the pressure was on to keep the No. 49 in front. Sweet ran his fastest laps during the last seven laps as the track surface began to take rubber. Sweet held his line and held off Schatz to win his first race of the season.
Next weekend continues a busy month of May, with World of Outlaws racing 10 nights within the next 25 days. The No. 49 NAPA AUTO PARTS team returns to action on Friday and Saturday, May 11 and 12, at the famed Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio. The team will head back to Tri-State Speedway in Haubstadt, Indiana, for a make up show on Sunday, May 13th.
Start / Finish:
May 4th – Lake Ozark Speedway: 9 / 6
May 5th – Salina Highbanks Speedway: 5 / 1
Points Standing / Total: 2 / 2212
Next Race: Friday, May 11, Eldora Speedway, Rossburg, Ohio
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