Lasoski Rolls to Victory in Davenport

By Craig Murphy

   DAVENPORT, Iowa – The state of Iowa has 99 counties.

   By the time the rest of the National Sprint Tour field crossed the finish line Tuesday night at Davenport Speedway, Danny Lasoski was already a couple of counties over.

   ‘The Dude’ started the 30-lap ‘A’ Main from pole and never looked back as a furious battle developed behind him.

   Make that way behind him.

   Lasoski pulled away early and was never threatened in a race that went green the whole way. In the end, Lasoski won by 13.506 seconds and nearly lapped up to eighth place Shane Stewart.

   “I had no idea I was that far out front,” Lasoski said after his second NST win of the year. “The thing was operating flawlessly.”

   Jason Sides, who suffered wing damage on lap 3, tussled nearly the entire race with Steve Kinser. Jason Solwold and later Tim Shaffer joined the intense battle, which saw positions swap regularly behind Sides.

   Sides took second while Shaffer and Solwold took advantage of a bobble by Kinser in the final turn to grab third and fourth. Kinser was fifth, followed by Jason Meyers, Joey Saldana and Stewart.

   While a caution would have closed the field, Sides didn’t think there would have been a lead change.

   “If there had been a yellow, that would have made it worse,” Sides said. “I probably would have lost a couple of positions. I thought we had something, but after the wing broke the car was too tight.”

   Shaffer was impressed the race stayed green, based on how much passing was going on throughout the field.

   “That was a great race,” Shaffer said. “Twice we were four-abreast, two rows deep. I said ‘This ain’t good.’ When you’re like that, usually something big happens. A couple of times I had my momentum taken away. I’m happy to run third. We put on a great show for the fans. More and more people are realizing what’s going on here.”

   Solwold used the high line to run strong.

   “The high line worked well,” he said. “I tried the bottom, and nothing was going on there. Man, there was a lot of stuff going on. That was a hell of a race. It was pretty intense. It goes by pretty quick. That was probably the best race we’ve had this year. I didn’t think there would be much passing here, but there was.”

   Kinser was among those losing momentum on a couple of occasions.

   “I got myself locked behind a couple of cars there a couple of times,” he said. “I got myself all messed up a couple of times in turns 3 and 4. On the last lap, I just got all messed up down there.”

   Up front, Lasoski wasn’t quite by himself as he was busy with lapped traffic. He didn’t know until after the race how far in front he was.

   “That’s five seconds from lapping the field,” he said when told the winning margin. “I could see second on the straightaway. It’s fantastic for me to race for a team that believes in me. I haven’t had that the last couple of years.”

   Stewart was the fastest of 26 qualifiers on the night, setting down a lap of 17.207 seconds. Heat races were won by Joey Saldana, Kinser and Lasoski. Lasoski won the first trophy dash over Wayne Johnson, Kerry Madsen, Shaffer, Stewart and Meyers.

   Sides won the second trophy dash over Kinser, Saldana, Solwold, Paul McMahan and Tim Kaeding. The B Main was won by Bronson Maeschen.

   NST is next in action at Tri-State Speedway in Pocola, OK on May 13, 2006 and returns to Davenport Speedway on June 14.