As the stars of the World of Outlaws Craftsman Late Model Series completed their recent “Week of Wisconsin” tour, one driver would race away with a large-and-in-charge $50,000 payday following Saturday night’s USA Nationals 100-lap feature at Cedar Lake Speedway. After dominating much of the week at various tracks throughout Wisconsin, Defending Series Champion Brandon Sheppard took home the big check after earning the win at the final high-banked dirt oval of the weekend at Cedar Lake Speedway.
Despite starting third behind the driver who kept Sheppard from a win at the recent Prairie Dirt Classic, the Rocket strong driver did what comes naturally to him and charged to the lead, ahead of 2017 Rookie of the Year and USA Nationals Dash Winner Devin Moran, on Lap 23.
Although challenged by 2014 event winner Jimmy Owens as well as the driver of the 3s Brian Shirley, who recently won his second DIRTcar Summer Nationals Hell Tour Championship, the Prairie State star waged war against those who would dare attempt to challenge him around the 3/8s-mile and eventually took this to his 11th victory of the season and 35th of his Outlaws career, as well as the $50,000 payday.
“This is definitely one of my top wins this far,” said Sheppard. “We have been coming here for a lot of years trying to win this race and had a really good car a lot of times, but just fell short. So, to win this, this means the world to me.”
Finishing a season high second in Outlaws competition, Brian Shirley gave Sheppard all he could handle throughout most of the race before finishing second in his #3s Bob Cullen Racing / Rocket XR1 Chassis / Durham Racing Engines ride.
“We just didn’t get a good restart, and Owens got back on the outside, but we were able to battle back and had a good car and I just can’t thank everybody behind us enough,” said Shirley. “This XR1 dirt machine ran great, and our Durham Racing Engine ran really well as well. Overall, I am just happy to get second in this one.”
Scoring the final podium position finish in his #20 Ramirez Motorsports / Rocket XR1 Chassis / Durham Racing Engine entry was Newport, TN veteran Jimmy Owens.
“We had a good car the whole race, but I was a little laid over on the right rear more than I wanted to be,” said Owens. “We had the lead there and were setting a comfortable pace where I felt like I could run without messing things up. Instead, Sheppard and Shirley got past me, and I thought, ‘I’m just going to sit here and bide my time and be cautious and things will fall my way,’ and sure enough they did. We had a good hot rod at the end, but just not enough to get it done.”
The World of Outlaws Craftsman Late Model Series will wrap up their two-week road trip through the Midwest with a date at the 3/8-mile of Farley Speedway, located west of Dubuque in Farley, IA. The Hawkeye State oval will host the World of Outlaws for the first time in 13 years, and only the third time ever, on Monday, August 6th with a $10,000-to-win payday. Farley was one of the original tracks on the schedule during the first two years after the 2004 rebirth.
Stay tuned to RacingJunk.com for all your World of Outlaws Craftsman Late Model Series 2018 racing action.