CONCORD The World of Outlaws dirt-track racing circuit will wrap up its season with the World Finals at the Dirt Track at Charlotte this weekend, with qualifying heats Thursday, feature races Friday and season finales Saturday.
This will be the seventh year Concord will be host to the finals, with full houses expected Saturday and Sunday at the 14,000-seat track. Here’s what to look for as champions are decided in the Sprint Car, Late Model and Big-Block Modified divisions.
The contenders: Daryn Pittman and five-time champion Donny Schatz are 1-2 in the premier division. Pittman, who has led since the season’s first race, has a 52-point lead, despite Schatz’s 22-8 edge in victories. Pittman’s lead can be attributed to his success in racking up bonus points in qualifying and being more consistent in races.
Inside info: Pittman and Schatz drive for NASCAR Sprint Cup drivers – Pittman with Kasey Kahne Racing, Schatz for Tony Stewart Racing.
The contenders: Josh Richards has this all but wrapped up with a 106-point lead over Darrell Lanigan. All Richards has to do is finish at least 26th in both 50-lap finals races.
Inside info: Richards, a two-time champion, was in line for a 2011 title at the Dirt Track, but his car blew a tire on the last lap of the last race, knocking him out of contention.
The contenders: Brett Hearn has a healthy 147-point lead over three-time reigning champ Matt Sheppard.
Inside info: Hearn also promotes races, and he nearly won his own event last summer at Albany Saratoga Speedway in New York.
Want to go?
Schedule: Thursday, 5 p.m.; Friday, 4 p.m.; Saturday, 4 p.m.
Tickets: 800-455-FANS; www.charlottemotorspeedway.com/dirt