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Sheldon Haudenschild won $20,000 at the DIRTcar Nationals finale. (Mark Funderburk photo)

Haudenschild Hustles To $20,000 DIRTcar Nationals Score

VOLUSIA, Fla. — After getting caught in a wreck and finishing 25th on Friday night at Volusia Speedway Park, Sheldon Haudenschild executed the perfect rebound during Saturday’s DIRTcar Nationals finale.

In a thrilling 30-lap feature that involved several changes for the lead, polesitter Gio Scelzi initially took control of the race in his No. 18 KCP Racing sprint car. Up until the first caution on lap 10, Scelzi appeared as if he’d set sail on the World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series field. 

However, following a pair of restarts, Anthony Macri threw his No. 39m sprint car into the ring and pinned it against the cushion for several laps in order to steal the lead away from Scelzi. 

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David Gravel celebrated his third Big Gator Championship with the Big Game Motorsports crew. (Mark Funderburk photo)

After that, Buddy Kofoid became the man on the move in the Roth Motorsports No. 83. He passed Scelzi for second, found his groove on the bottom and began to challenge Macri out front.

By then, Haudenschild was up to third. All it took was one mistake against the curb for Kofoid and the No. 17 Stenhouse Jr. / Marshall Racing sprint car quickly took over second, while Macri continued to log his laps out front.

On lap 24, Haudenschild found his way into the lead, relinquishing Macri back to second.

And that was all she wrote for the driver of the No. 17, who held the position through the checkered flag to collect his first win of the World of Outlaws season. 

“I think we felt good all week, honestly, just a lot of things happened that were out of our control,” Haudenschild said. “Just had to keep working, we know we’re capable, it’s just (a matter of) making it happen.”

Macri came in second, while Brad Sweet charged from eighth to finish third. 

“I knew there towards the end of the race, I had to be on the bottom. But lapped cars were down there, so I tried to make it work on the top, because I didn’t want to get stuck on the bottom and have Sheldon (Haudenschild) run the top and get past us. Then I tripped on the curb a little bit and Sheldon passed us,” Macri explained. 

Scelzi and Kofoid completed the top five. 

David Gravel, who finished sixth, won the Big Gator Championship — which also included a $3,000 bonus. 

The finish:

Feature (30 Laps): 1. 17-Sheldon Haudenschild[3]; 2. 39M-Anthony Macri[2]; 3. 49-Brad Sweet[8]; 4. 18-Giovanni Scelzi[1]; 5. 83-Michael Kofoid[4]; 6. 2-David Gravel[7]; 7. 15-Donny Schatz[9]; 8. 24-Rico Abreu[5]; 9. 7BC-Tyler Courtney[10]; 10. 26-Zeb Wise[15]; 11. 19-Brent Marks[6]; 12. 1S-Logan Schuchart[11]; 13. 13-Justin Peck[16]; 14. 41-Carson Macedo[23]; 15. 5-Spencer Bayston[18]; 16. 3Z-Brock Zearfoss[25]; 17. 9-Kasey Kahne[21]; 18. 14-Corey Day[12]; 19. 24D-Danny Sams III[24]; 20. 8-Cory Eliason[17]; 21. 21-Brian Brown[14]; 22. 7S-Landon Crawley[13]; 23. 1-Brenham Crouch[20]; 24. 17B-Bill Balog[19]; 25. 6-Bill Rose[26]; 26. (DNS) 48-Danny Dietrich