HANOVER, Pa. — Bobby Allen, one of the original outlaws, will bring two young guns on the World of Outlaws trail in 2014.
Allen, a member of the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame and the owner of Shark Racing, will field sprint cars for his grandson, Logan Schuchart, and his son, Jacob Allen, in the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series in 2014. The tour features 92 race nights at 52 different tracks in 24 states and three Canadian provinces. The premier traveling sprint car circuit in the nation, it sanctions the prestigious Knoxville Nationals at Knoxville (Iowa) Raceway, which Bobby Allen won in 1990.
Shark Racing is based in Hanover, Pa. Schuchart was born in York, Pa., and he’s a graduate of Spring Grove High School in Spring Grove, Pa. Jacob Allen was born in Indianapolis and he is a graduate of Brownsburg High School in Brownsburg, Ind., but he moved to Hanover, Pa. about three years ago and currently resides there as well.
Bobby Allen and other notable drivers like Rick Ferkel, Steve Kinser and Doug Wolfgang were instrumental in helping the late Ted Johnson organize non-sanctioned, or outlaw, sprint car racing in the late seventies. Today the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series enjoys national sponsors, increased purses, contingency programs and national TV coverage for selected events.
Schuchart, who turned 21 today, and Jacob Allen, 19, are both members of the Pennsylvania Posse. That’s the name given to sprint car drivers based in Pennsylvania, a hotbed for sprint car racing. They have run selected WoO events in the past, and they’re both looking forward to life on the road in 2014.
“What sprint car driver wouldn’t want to run with the World of Outlaws? I am very lucky and blessed to have such an opportunity,” said Jacob Allen. “I can’t thank my sponsors, my fans and my family enough for all that they do.
“I can’t wait to meet so many great people, compete with the greatest sprint car drivers in the country, and learn from them all. They are my competitors but really they are helping me learn, grow, and achieve my dream of becoming a full-time racer.”
Both will vie for the series’ Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year award. Schuchart, who has been racing longer than Jacob Allen, was voted the 410 Sprint Car Rookie of the Year in 2012 by the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame and Museum.
Both young drivers will be behind the wheel of Shark chassis using engines prepared by Don Ott.
“It’s been my dream since I was a little kid to be like my grandfather, Bobby Allen, and just race against the outlaws, let alone be an outlaw,” said Schuchart. “We have a lot of great people making this happen — family, friends, sponsors and our fans — we couldn’t do it without anyone.
“I look forward to going on the road in 2014; seeing all the tracks; learning more of what it takes to be successful as a team and a driver, and experiencing all the challenges the tour has to offer,” Schuchart added.
Schuchart’s No. 1s is sponsored by Your Auto Source, Fogle & Sons, Newman’s Towing & Recovery and CnB Mushroom Farms. Jacob Allen’s No. 1a is sponsored by those four companies too, as well as Brenneman Painting, Marty Thompson and Mark Pell.
Shark Racing is trying to raise funds to help with the expenses the team will face with the increased traveling it will do in 2014 on the WoO circuit. The need is especially great at the beginning of the season, as the series doesn’t pay registered drivers tow money until they compete in the first five races of the year.
The series starts Feb. 14-16 at Volusia Speedway Park in Barberville, Fla., where the car counts are usually fairly high since not many other sprint car races are being held at that time due to winter weather. The series then travels west to Nevada, Arizona and California. In past years there have several rainouts during the California swing, which could pose a big problem. Being far away from home and watching it rain without a paycheck can put a sprint car driver’s season into the red very quickly.
Shark Racing is reaching out to its fans and potential new fans to try to raise enough funds to get its season off to a good start. The team would also like to partner with companies that would benefit from the advertising exposure they’ll generate throughout the nation all year.
“Someway, somehow I plan to do this,” Bobby Allen said. “It’s kind of like the story of David and Goliath, but none of this would be possible without my sponsors, my fans, my family and a little bit of luck.”