A Record Setting Night for Saldana at Cottage Grove Speedway
Cottage Grove, OR—Aug. 29, 2007--By: Tony Veneziano, World of Outlaws PR Director
Joey Saldana made history twice on Wednesday night at Cottage Grove Speedway in Oregon. He became the first driver to turn a sub 10-second lap in time trials at the high-banked ¼-mile. He followed that up by winning the A-Feature in front of the largest crowd in the 50-plus year history of the track to add another chapter to the storied tradition of the facility which has one of the most picturesque settings in all of racing, nestled between a river and a forest.
Saldana started third and patiently found a rhythm over the first eight laps of the race. On the night lap, he moved to the high side of Jason Solwold to take the runner-up spot. From there he chased Tim Shaffer and on the 13th lap looked high for the lead in turn two and then dove low in the fourth turn to take the lead. Shaffer fought back through the first and second turns. Late in the race, Shaffer made a charge at Saldana in open race track. With his win, Saldana moved to within 32 points of the lead in the World of Outlaws championship standings.
“It’s great to get a win here,” said Saldana, driver of the Open Joist JEI. “I love coming out here and this race has always been a good track for me. It helps when we come back next year, knowing that we can win at these places. We’re doing everything we need to do right now. We just have to keep doing that.”
The 40-lap event started with pole sitter Donny Schatz leading into turn one, with Shaffer charging to the lead on the back straightaway. Several times during the first five laps, Schatz would inch ahead, but at the line Shaffer was officially scored the leader each time.
As he was battling for the lead on the sixth lap, Schatz drifted up the track and went over the banking between the first and seconds turns. He kept the car going and rejoined the race in 14th. He regained a couple of spots before the caution flag flew on the eighth lap, where he lined up 11th for the restart.
After Saldana took the lead from Shaffer, he began to open a sizeable lead, though in lapped traffic he got held up a couple of times, allowing Shaffer to close back in. In the middle stages of the 40-lap event, Saldana ran the high side of the track and later in the race, began to protect the bottom.
Shaffer closed to within a couple car lengths of Saldana with four laps to go. The caution flag flew on the following circuit, at which time a fuel stop was called for, giving the leaders open track for the final three laps. Saldana restarted on the high side of the track and powered his way into the first turn. On the first lap back under green, Schatz charged around Daryn Pittman and Jason Meyers on the high side of the track to move into third. He then powered his way around Shaffer on the final lap to finish second.
For Saldana, it was his 10th win of the season and first since July 7 at I-55 Raceway in Missouri. After leading the final 28 laps of the race, he now has led 322 laps on the season, which is best of any driver in the series. Also, his quick time was his series-leading 11th fast time honor, utilizing a Mopar-powered engine from Speedway Motors.
“We put a fresh motor in tonight and it didn’t skip a beat,” said the winner. “To set a new track record and to win the race, you can’t ask for much more than that from the engine. My guys are working great. They could easily give up, but they don’t. They worked hard to get this done.”
Saldana did not really want to see the caution flag wave late, as his car was working well in traffic. He had a simple strategy for the last restart, knowing he would have a couple of fast cars taking a shot at him.
“I wanted to run the top, but ran one lap there and couldn’t run it, so I went to the bottom,” explained the native of Brownsburg, Indiana. “I figured if they wanted to pass me that they would have to do it on the outside. It is a decision I had to make. I would rather have someone drive around me than under me and know I gave it away.”
Schatz’s runner-up finish was his series-best 39th Top-Five finish of the season, as he continues to lead the World of Outlaws championship standings in search of his second consecutive series title. The native of Fargo, North Dakota put on a great show for the fans, as he charged his way back to the front through half of the field.
“I made a big mistake and it was my fault,” said Schatz, driver of the ParkerStore J&J. “I’m glad to get back up there. To fall back 14th or 15th and finish second isn’t too bad. We were good enough to win. All I needed was one more lap, but that’s how it falls. It’s done and we’ll go to Calistoga and try to get back out on the front straightaway.”
Saldana got bottled up a couple of times in traffic, allowing Shaffer to close back up on his bumper over the course of the final 20 laps of the race. He lapped up to the 17th-place finisher, in a race that saw the caution flag wave five times and the red flag twice.
“In lapped traffic I could go anywhere,” said Saldana. “I went to the middle and even the bottom a couple times. I had a little scare when (Jason) Sides and I got together going into turn one, but other than that it was good.”
Shaffer challenged Saldana for most of the second half of the race after leading the first 12 laps. For the native of Aliquippa, Pennsylvania, the third-place effort was his 18th Top-Five finish of the season.
“It was a good run,” said Shaffer, driver of the Casey’s General Store Maxim. “It’s not too bad when you are disappointed with running third. We tried a few things to win and if we don’t try a few things, we won’t get it. We’re running well on the big and small tracks right now.”
Jason Meyers started 13th and patiently worked his way to the front, eventually finishing fourth. He battled Daryn Pittman for the third spot for a number of laps and ran third for a bit before settling in to fourth.
“We had a great race car tonight,” said Meyers, driver of the Primerica Financial Maxim. “Having to start back there can be tough with the format on many nights, but we had a good car. The guys did a great job. We haven’t been able to break fifth here lately. I was determined to break the Top-Five tonight. It was a good run for us.”
Daryn Pittman earned his 39th Top-10 finish of the season on Wednesday night, finishing fifth in the Titan Garages Maxim, after starting seventh.
Jason Solwold was sixth in the City Wide Insulation Maxim, with Roger Crockett seventh in the Island Muffler & Brake Eagle. Brad Sweet, who won the first heat, was eighth in the GP Development Maxim. Paul McMahan was ninth in the Bass Pro Shops Eagle, with Kerry Madsen rounding out the Top-10 in the Selma Shell Maxim.
On the final restart with three laps to go, Schatz lined up fifth and wasted no time going to the high side of the track, as he looked for his second career win at Cottage Grove. He won at the track in 1998 to earn his first career World of Outlaws A-Feature win.
“We had a good restart and my car really rolled the top very well,” said Schatz. “I’m glad to get a good finish after the mistakes I made tonight.”
The very warm evening and tight track conditions tested both the drivers and their cars. Shaffer, who has always run well in the Pacific Northwest, was proud of his team for giving him another fast car as he continues to close in on his first A-Feature win of the season.
“It is a demanding place with how fast the track is,” Shaffer said. “It slowed down later in the feature and you had to have a good race car. We had a good race car early and got loose late.”
Despite the number of cautions during the 40-lap event, the leaders were in traffic for a large part of the race. Jason Meyers didn’t mind seeing the yellow flag wave, as his car took off very well on each restart.
“You expect that at a track like this,” said Meyers of the lapped traffic. “On the smaller tracks you get a lot of cautions, though I have seen it run non-stop here. We had a good car and were able to capitalize on the restarts.”
The World of Outlaws return to action on Saturday, September 1 at Calistoga Speedway in California for the Harvest Classic.
• FAST QUALIFIER: Joey Saldana paced the 32 cars that took time with a record setting AMB i.t. timed lap around the high-banked 1/4-mile oval in 9.991 seconds at 90.081 mph. For his qualifying effort, Saldana earned five bonus points. The next four fastest qualifiers also earned bonus points, including: Roger Crockett (4), Paul McMahan (3), Justin Henderson (2) and Terry McCarl (1).
• QUALIFYING WINNERS: Brad Sweet, Tim Shaffer, Daryn Pittman and Jason Solwold won heat races… Terry McCarl won the B-Main… Donny Schatz won the Crane Cams dash.
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 • FEATURE WINNERS: There have been 60 World of Outlaws A-Feature events held in 2007. The win list includes: Donny Schatz (February 9 at Volusia Speedway Park, March 3 at Manzanita Speedway, March 16 at Houston Raceway Park, April 28 at Knoxville Raceway, May 17 at Williams Grove Speedway, May 18 at Williams Grove Speedway, May 25 at The Dirt Track @ Lowe’s Motor Speedway, June 25 at Black Hills Speedway, July 3 at Huset’s Speedway, July 14 at Eldora Speedway, July 18 at Lernerville Speedway, July 19 at Williams Grove Speedway, July 21 at Williams Grove Speedway and August 19 at Castrol Raceway), Joey Saldana (February 23 at Thunderbowl Raceway, March 17 at Pike County Speedway, March 24 at Volunteer Speedway, March 31 at Dixie Speedway, April 20 at Attica Raceway Park, June 5 at Kokomo Speedway, June 9 at Eagle Raceway, June 29 at River Cities Speedway, July 7 at I-55 Raceway and August 29 at Cottage Grove Speedway), Steve Kinser (March 2 at USA Race Park, April 21 at Tri-State Speedway, May 15 at Lernerville Speedway, May 20 at New Egypt Speedway, May 28 at Rolling Wheels Raceway Park, June 1 at Sharon Speedway, June 20 at Missouri State Fair Speedway, July 13 at Eldora Speedway and August 17 at Castrol Raceway), Jason Meyers (April 13 at Eldora Speedway, May 11 at U.S. 36 Raceway, June 22 at Dodge City Raceway Park and July 22 at Lebanon Valley Speedway), Daryn Pittman (February 11 at Volusia Speedway Park, May 5 at Riverside International Speedway, June 23 at Dodge City Raceway Park and August 14 at Nodak Speedway), Craig Dollansky (May 12 at Lake Ozark Speedway, July 27 at I-96 Speedway and August 25 at Skagit Speedway), Danny Lasoski (April 6 at Paducah International Raceway, May 23 at Grandview Speedway and June 14 at Tri-City Speedway), Jac Haudenschild (June 30 at Red River Valley Speedway and July 11 at Limaland Motorsports Park), Terry McCarl (June 16 at Knoxville Raceway and July 28 at K-C Raceway),  Paul McMahan (June 2 at Eldora Speedway and July 1 at Cedar Lake Speedway), Tim Kaeding (February 24 at Thunderbowl Raceway), Brian Leppo (July 20 at Williams Grove Speedway), Kerry Madsen (February 10 at Volusia Speedway Park), Jason Sides (July 25 at Ohsweken Speedway), Jason Solwold (August 3 at Charter Raceway Park), Shane Stewart (August 27 at Grays Harbor Raceway) and Brooke Tatnell (August 24 at Skagit Speedway).
1/4-MILE WINNERS:  Cottage Grove Speedway is a high-banked 1/4-mile oval. The World of Outlaws have raced six times this season on a track that size. The winners include: Joey Saldana (Kokomo Speedway and Cottage Grove Speedway), Jac Haudenschild (Limaland Motorsports Park), Steve Kinser (Tri-State Speedway), Daryn Pittman (Riverside International Speedway), and Donny Schatz (Houston Raceway Park).
ON TELEVISION:  The World of Outlaws will be televised 20 times this season on ESPN2 and SPEED while the World of Outlaws Late Model Series is set for six appearances on SPEED. The one-hour broadcasts will air on Sundays from May 13 to Nov. 4, when the series champions will be crowned during the World Finals from The Dirt Track @ Lowe’s Motor Speedway.
The next scheduled broadcast for the World of Outlaws on SPEED will be Sunday, September 2 at Noon Eastern, 11 a.m. Central, with the first of two events from Skagit Speedway.
• ON THE WEB: The Official World of Outlaws Web site is at http://www.worldofoutlaws.com. Among the features are updated driver biographies with individual statistics and pictures, race-by-race statistics, detailed track information and race coverage, series news and team press releases. Also, links to the Media Guide and 2007 Official Rulebook can be found at the bottom of the home page.

• LISTEN ONLINE: If fans can’t get to a track to see the series, they can experience the excitement of the World of Outlaws live through the DIRTVision.com Cybercast and on the DIRT Radio Network. To listen to the audio broadcasts, log on to www.DIRTVision.com and click on the DIRT Radio Network logo. Listeners will need Windows Media Player 9 or higher to listen to the DIRT Radio Network. For technical support or questions, e-mail webmaster@DIRTVision.com.

• UP NEXT: The Gold Rush Tour continues with the Harvest Classic at Calistoga Speedway on September 1-2
• UPCOMING EVENTS: The Gold Cup Race of Champions at Silver Dollar Speedway on September 6-8.
World of Outlaws Statistical Report; Cottage Grove Speedway; Cottage Grove, OR; Aug. 29, 2007
1) 9-Joey Saldana 9.991
2) 7N-Roger Crockett 10.049
3) 20-Paul McMahan 10.085
4) D1-Justin Henderson 10.091
5) 24-Terry McCarl 10.097
6) 6-Tim Shaffer 10.098
7) 14-Jason Meyers 10.132
8) 18T-Tony Bruce Jr. 10.139
9) 6S-Brad Sweet 10.141
10) 15-Donny Schatz 10.158
11) 15H-Sam Hafertepe Jr. 10.172
12) 7S-Jason Sides 10.178
13) 1X-Randy Hannagan 10.178
14) 11-Steve Kinser 10.189
15) 21-Daryn Pittman 10.200
16) R19-Jason Solwold 10.205
17) 35-Jac Haudenschild 10.207
18) 83-Danny Lasoski 10.209
19) 11H-Kerry Madsen 10.212
20) 8K-Chad Kemenah 10.214
21) O-Jonathan Allard 10.216
22) 2-Brooke Tatnell 10.217
23) 10C-Jeremy Campbell 10.279
24) 10-Tim Kaeding 10.282
25) 26-Tayler Malsam 10.311
26) 7-Craig Dollansky 10.318
27) 5C-Chad Hillier 10.397
28) 29A-Jason Botsford 10.531
29) 26F-Shane Forte 10.739
30) 1T-Anthony Thomas 11.292
31) 21X-Michael Griffith 11.296
32) 29-Dan Philpott 11.735
Heat 1 (10 Laps, top 5 finishers transferred to A-feature)
1) 6S-Brad Sweet
2) 1X-Randy Hannagan
3) 9-Joey Saldana
4) 35-Jac Haudenschild
5) O-Jonathan Allard
6) 26F-Shane Forte
7) 24-Terry McCarl
8) 26-Tayler Malsam
Heat 2 (10 Laps, top 5 finishers transferred to A-feature)
1) 6-Tim Shaffer
2) 15-Donny Schatz
3) 11-Steve Kinser
4) 7N-Roger Crockett
5) 83-Danny Lasoski
6) 7-Craig Dollansky
7) 2-Brooke Tatnell
8) 1T-Anthony Thomas
Heat 3 (10 Laps, top 5 finishers transferred to A-feature)
1) 21-Daryn Pittman
2) 20-Paul McMahan
3) 14-Jason Meyers
4) 10C-Jeremy Campbell
5) 11H-Kerry Madsen
6) 5C-Chad Hillier
7) 15H-Sam Hafertepe Jr.
8) 21X-Michael Griffith
Heat 4 (10 Laps, top 5 finishers transferred to A-feature)
1) R19-Jason Solwold
2) 7S-Jason Sides
3) D1-Justin Henderson
4) 10-Tim Kaeding
5) 8K-Chad Kemenah
6) 18T-Tony Bruce Jr.
7) 29A-Jason Botsford
8) 29-Dan Philpott
Crane Cams Dash (8 laps, finishing order determined first 10 starting positions of A-feature)
1) 15-Donny Schatz
2) 6-Tim Shaffer
3) 9-Joey Saldana
4) R19-Jason Solwold
5) 20-Paul McMahan
6) 7S-Jason Sides
7) 21-Daryn Pittman
8) 6S-Brad Sweet
9) 7N-Roger Crockett
10) 1X-Randy Hannagan
B-main (12 laps, top 4 finishers transferred to A-feature)
1) 24-Terry McCarl
2) 18T-Tony Bruce Jr.  
3) 7-Craig Dollansky
4) 15H-Sam Hafertepe Jr.  
5) 2-Brooke Tatnell [$200]
6) 26F-Shane Forte [$180]
7) 5C-Chad Hillier [$175]
8) 29A-Jason Botsford [$160]
9) 26-Tayler Malsam [$150]
10) 21X-Michael Griffith [$150]
11) 29-Dan Philpott [$150]
12) 1T-Anthony Thomas [$150]
A-main (40 laps) - Starting Position [#]
1) 9-Joey Saldana[3] [$10,000]
2) 15-Donny Schatz[1] [$5,500]
3) 6-Tim Shaffer[2] [$3,200]
4) 14-Jason Meyers[13] [$2,800]
5) 21-Daryn Pittman[7] [$2,500]
6) R19-Jason Solwold[4] [$2,300]
7) 7N-Roger Crockett[9] [$2,200]
8) 6S-Brad Sweet[8] [$2,100]
9) 20-Paul McMahan[5] [$2,050]
10) 11H-Kerry Madsen[19] [$2,000]
11) 7-Craig Dollansky[24] [$1,500]
12) 8K-Chad Kemenah[20] [$1,200]
13) 24-Terry McCarl[12] [$1,100]
14) 83-Danny Lasoski[18] [$1,050]
15) D1-Justin Henderson[11] [$1,000]
16) 35-Jac Haudenschild[17] [$900]
17) 7S-Jason Sides[6] [$800]
18) 10-Tim Kaeding[23] [$800]
19) 11-Steve Kinser[16] [$800]
20) 10C-Jeremy Campbell[22] [$800]
21) 15H-Sam Hafertepe Jr.[15] [$800]
22) O-Jonathan Allard[21] [$800]
23) 1X-Randy Hannagan[10] [$800]
24) 18T-Tony Bruce Jr.[14] [$800]
Lap Leaders: Tim Shaffer 1-12, Joey Saldana 13-40
KSE Hard Charger Award: Craig Dollansky