Brad Sweet and the NAPA Auto Parts No. 49 team visited Devil’s Bowl Speedway in Mesquite, Texas, for the final event at the iconic track where the World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series got its start back in 1978. The Sprint Car Stampede proved to be a roller coaster for Sweet and the No. 49 team, with moments of excitement and drama as the reigning champion attempted to pad his championship points lead heading into the season-ending World Finals.
On Friday night, Sweet set the tone with an outstanding performance in qualifying. The Big Cat took the top spot with a blazing lap time of 13.391 seconds on the high-banked half-mile. The lap netted Sweet the pole position for his heat race, where the four-time and reigning Outlaws champion encountered a “greasy” track with a light spray of moisture on the bottom of the surface. The NAPA team delivered their best attempt and ultimately finished second, guaranteeing their spot in the Fast Pass Dash.
Sweet dropped from fifth to sixth in the six-lap dash, placing him sixth to start the feature. Looking to advance in Friday’s 25-lap main event, Sweet continued to impress. He surged from sixth to third, earning his 29th podium finish of the season.
While Sweet’s success didn’t stop there, Saturday also brought challenges. Sweet once again dominated qualifying, positing a lap time of 14.266 seconds and grabbing the pole position. With his speed and consistency on full display, the NAPA driver mirrored his performance in the previous night’s heat race, finishing second and securing a trip to the Fast Pass Dash.
After drawing the fourth starting spot in the dash, the Grass Valley, California, native climbed from fourth to third, placing himself third to start the last-ever Outlaws race at Devil’s Bowl. The feature would test the NAPA team. Just three laps into the 30-lap Sprint Car Stampede finale, the No. 49 was involved in an on-track incident that sent the NAPA machine to the work area. That setback couldn’t deter the determined driver, and Sweet used the pressure of rejoining the race at the back of the field as motivation. He salvaged a seventh-place finish, maintaining a substantial points lead heading into the season-finale World Finals at The Dirt Track at Charlotte Motor Speedway beginning next week.
Start / Finish:
Friday, Oct. 20: 6 / 3
Saturday, Oct. 21: 3 / 7
Points Standing / Total: 1st / 9,226 pts. (+50)
Next Race: November 1-4, World Finals at The Dirt Track at Charlotte Motor Speedway
How to Watch or Listen: www.dirtvision.com
Kasey Kahne Racing (KKR), located in Mooresville, NC, was formed in 2005 and employs more than ten people dedicated to sprint car racing. The organization fields two entries in the World of Outlaw Sprint Car Series; Brad Sweet (NAPA No.49) and former NASCAR Cup Series driver Kasey Kahne (No.9). Collectively, KKR has 5 World of Outlaws Championships (Daryn Pittman in '13 and Brad Sweet in '19,'20,'21 &'22). Since the team's inception, KKR has amassed over 211 World of Outlaws wins.