Gold Cup Belongs To Shane Stewart

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Shane Stewart in victory lane at Silver Dollar Speedway. (Joe Shivak photo)

CHICO, Calif. — Shane Stewart passed local driver Justin Sanders to win his eighth World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series feature of the season Saturday night, but his first Gold Cup Race of Champions triumph at Silver Dollar Speedway.

Sanders finished a career-best second with Friday’s winner Kyle Hirst completing the podium.

Stewart, who is no stranger to victory lane at the quarter-mile track, finally crossed the Gold Cup Race of Champions off of his bucket list.

“When you retire, you are only remembered for the big races you win and this was one that I’ve always wanted to win. We’ve been close the last few years and to finally get it means so much to me,” Stewart said.

Sanders, in search of his first career World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series victory, was strong all weekend. Sanders led the first 11 laps before Stewart got grip on the bottom of turn four to take the lead. Stewart never looked back.

As lapped traffic became heavier Sanders closed back in on Stewart looking to make a move but a caution on lap 28 gave Stewart a clear track sealing the victory for the Larson/Marks Racing No.2

“Before this weekend, if you would have told me that I was going to run second and fifth with the Outlaws, I would have been ecstatic,” Sanders said. “I made one mistake in traffic, it’s heartbreaking. We are happy no doubt, but we’re bummed at the same time.”

Hirst was all smiles after finishing on the podium and thanked the California faithful multiple times for packing the stands all weekend at the Gold Cup Race of Champions.

Australian Jamie Veal finished fourth with 11th-starting Willie Croft completing the top five.

World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series, Silver Dollar Speedway, Chico, Calif., Sept. 9, 2017

Qualifying Flight-A: 1. 41S-Dominic Scelzi, 11.694; 2. 20-Cory Eliason, 11.723; 3. 83-Kyle Hirst, 11.745; 4. 29-Willie Croft, 11.783; 5. 35-Jamie Veal, 11.788; 6. 2-Shane Stewart, 11.799; 7. 49-Brad Sweet, 11.855; 8. 21W-Jake Wheeler, 11.914; 9. 9-Daryn Pittman, 11.951; 10. 22-Shane Golobic, 11.958; 11. 5-David Gravel, 11.964; 12. 83JR-Jonathan Allard, 11.987; 13. 7S-Jason Sides, 11.992; 14. 19-Brent Marks, 12.057; 15. 4-Paul McMahan, 12.174; 16. 19X-Chase Majdic, 12.19; 17. 26-Tayler Malsam, 12.228; 18. 7B-Brent Bjork, 12.617; 19. W20-Greg Wilson, 12.684; 20. 98-Sean Watts, 12.736

Qualifying Flight-B: 1. 17-Jac Haudenschild, 11.521; 2. 24-Rico Abreu, 11.581; 3. 21X-Carson Macedo, 11.714; 4. 121-Justin Sanders, 11.775; 5. 3C-DJ Netto, 11.794; 6. 7-Kalib Henry, 11.805; 7. 41-Jason Johnson, 11.816; 8. 37-Mitchell Faccinto, 11.846; 9. 1A-Jacob Allen, 11.854; 10. 75-Sean Becker, 11.86; 11. O-Bud Kaeding, 11.926; 12. 93-Sheldon Haudenschild, 12.012; 13. 1S-Logan Schuchart, 12.049; 14. 22M-Mason Moore, 12.055; 15. 92-Andy Forsberg, 12.074; 16. 15-Donny Schatz, 12.077; 17. 13-Clyde Knipp, 12.136; 18. 11K-Kraig Kinser, 12.173; 19. 18-Jennafer Frazier, 12.935; 20. 44W-Austen Wheatley, NT

First Heat (10 laps): Hirst, Veal, Scelzi, Sweet, Pittman, Gravel, Sides, Malsam, McMahan, Wilson.

Second Heat (10 laps): Stewart, Eliason, Croft, Allard, Marks, Bjork, Wheeler, Majdic, Golobic, Watts.

Third Heat (10 laps): J. Haudenschild, Macedo, Johnson, Kaeding, Schuchart, Allen, Knipp, Netto, Forsberg, Frazier.

Fourth Heat (10 laps): Sanders, Abreu, Faccinto, Henry, Becker, S. Haudenschild, Schatz, Moore, Kinser, Wheatley.

Craftsman Club Dash (8 laps): Sanders, J. Haudenschild, Stewart, Hirst, Eliason, Veal, Abreu, Macedo.

C Main (10 laps): 1. Malsam; 2. Kinser; 3. Bjork, $150; 4. Watts, $150; 5. Frazier, $150; 6. Wilson, $125; 7. Knipp, $125; 8. Wheatley, $125.

Last Chance Showdown (12 laps): 1. Netto; 2. Gravel; 3. Wheeler; 4. Allen; 5. McMahan, $300; 6. Schatz, $250; 7. Moore, $225; 8. Majdic, $200; 9. Golobic, $200; 10. Kinser, $200; 11. S. Haudenschild, $200; 12. Malsam, $200; 13. Forsberg, $200; 14. Sides, $200.

Feature (40 Laps): 1. Stewart, $12,000; 2. Sanders, $5,700; 3. Hirst, $3,500; 4. Veal, $3,000; 5. Croft, $2,600; 6. Sweet, $2,400; 7. Macedo, $2,300; 8. Faccinto, $2,200; 9. J. Haudenschild, $2,150; 10. Schuchart, $2,100; 11. Schatz, $800; 12. Johnson, $1,350; 13. Kaeding, $1,300; 14. Scelzi, $1,200; 15. Pittman, $1,100; 16. Netto, $1,000; 17. Henry, $900; 18. Gravel, $850; 19. Wheeler, $800; 20. S. Haudenschild, $800; 21. Abreu, $800; 22. Eliason, $800; 23. Allard, $800; 24. Becker, $800; 25. Marks, $800; 26. Allen, $800.