Another fantastic year of auto racing is drawing to a close and now we’re at that special time of year when everyone’s hard work is duly recognized at various award ceremonies and events. This year is no different, and already the AARWBA All-American Auto Racing Team nominees have been announced.
So far it seems that top rivals Donny Schatz and Jason Meyers have been lumped together for the ‘Short Track’ category of the AARWBA All-American Auto Racing Team. Those who have been watching the two during the course of the year will find it somewhat odd that two rivals have now been made into teammates. Donny Schatz is not exactly a newcomer to the scene. This was the third consecutive time he’d won the World of Outlaws title and also the third consecutive year that he has been given First Team honors. Schatz competed ardently during the course of the year, winning 18 A-feature events and finishing the season with as many as 25 wins. He won as many as sixteen of the various World of Outlaws races and has also taken the Knoxville Nationals for the third season in a row. He is now one of only two drivers to accomplish that feat and he is eligible for the Jerry Titus Award, which is generally given to the ‘Driver of the Year’. After such a strong racing career he is understandably the perfect candidate.
Jason Meyers doesn’t quite have the same list of accomplishments under his belt, but he certainly isn’t doing too badly for himself. This is only the first time that Meyers has been named to the team and he was given Second Team honors after finishing second in the championship standings. He managed to win as many as nine of the World of Outlaws races this season and had 48 top-five finishes. He also had the quickest time trials at sixteen different races and managed to lead the series championship standings for a while near the beginning of the season. He has progressively improved his performance and stats over the year, finishing off by winning the first-ever ‘Breaking the VAULT’ challenge at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. In doing so, he also defeated nine other drivers including top rival Donny Schatz. Understandably both drivers are ecstatic about being named to the team.
Jason Meyers has been hard at work climbing his way through the Advance Auto Parts World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series standings. After some aggressive driving he has managed to cut Donny Schatz‘s lead to 115 markers. Meyers currently leads the series with 34 Top-Five finishes – the last fifteen of which have been consecutive. If he continues at his current pace, Meyers’ chances of winning his first series title will be very good.
However Meyers is up against some tough competition. Two-time defending series champion Schatz is not about to give up without a fight. Schatz is the only driver who has managed to finish in the top-10 in every single event that has taken place this season. With 12 A-Feature wins under his belt, he is looking to get his third consecutive title. He has 33 Top-Five finishes and so is hot on the tail of Meyers. The two are hotly pursued by Craig Dollansky who finished in second place in the race held at Dacotah Speedway on Saturday night, as well as on Sunday night. He continues to stay in third place in the standings and currently has 37 Top-Ten finishes so far this season as well as seven A-Feature wins.
Though they may not be much of a challenge to the top two contenders at this point, Joey Saldana and Steve Kinser are also working hard to make sure that they stay in the top five on the standings. Joey Saldana has 32 Top-Ten finishes so far this season and remains fourth in the point standings, while Steve Kinser is closing in on him with 30 Top-Ten finishes. The point gap between Kinser and Saldana closed a little after the races on Saturday, where Kinser managed to take a win, and on Sunday when he had another Top-Ten finish. The top five are tailed by Jac Haudenschild who is sixth in points with 14 Top-Five finishes and Kerry Madsen and Chad Kemenah who are tied for seventh. There are still a few more Advance Auto Parts World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series races left before the end of the season so fans will be kept on the edge of their seats as they await the final outcome of the series.