Photo by: Foto Bomb Production
MOORESVILLE, N.C. (November 6, 2018) – The World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series 2018 season was wrapped up this past weekend at The Dirt Track at Charlotte in Concord, N.C. With that, Stewart and Kyle Larson Racing concluded their strong five-year partnership with a heartbreaker during the opening feature and an 11th-place finish in the finale.
Stewart and KLR kicked off World Finals weekend Thursday night as they qualified for both Friday and Saturday night programs. The Bixby, Okla., native qualified sixth in Flight 2 for Friday night’s segment, lining him up to start second in the sixth and final heat race. For Saturday’s portion, Stewart qualified eighth in Flight 2 of time trials to start third in the fifth heat race.
After Friday’s show was delayed a couple hours due to rain, sprint cars were finally pushed for hot laps just after 8:00pm ET. Stewart started and finished second in the final World of Outlaws sprint car heat race of the night, transferring him into the Sears Craftsman Dash. Stewart pulled the 4 wrench to start outside of his KLR teammate in the second row of the second dash. He gained two spots to finish second, lining him up to start fourth for the 30-lap feature event, which was pushed to Saturday afternoon due to curfew at the speedway.
Stewart kicked off the first feature on Saturday with a strong start. After starting from the outside of row two, the pilot of the Chevrolet Accessories No. 2 quickly made his way towards the front, seizing the lead on Lap 4. Unfortunately, nine laps later Stewart’s right-rear tire blew in Turn 4 to bring out the first caution of the race. The KLR team was able to make repairs in the work area and Stewart returned to the track. After a red flag on the restart, he returned to the pit area for more repairs and again restarted from the rear. Two laps later, Stewart brought out another caution as he was trying to exit the track and as a result unfortunately tallied his first and only DNF of the season.
Stewart started Saturday’s segment looking for a little redemption after a strong run was ended early and advanced from his third starting spot in Heat 5 to immediately capture the lead. He went on to win his heat race and advance into the Sears Craftsman Dash. Stewart drew the 3 wrench, lining him up on the inside of row two in the second Dash where he finished fourth. Stewart started eighth for the 30-lap finale and raced within the top-10 for a majority of the feature, but slipped back in the closing laps to finish 11th.
“I am so bummed about that right-rear blowing in the first feature on Saturday,” said Stewart. “I really wanted to get one last win with this KLR team. We had such good speed, it just didn’t work out. I can’t thank everyone that has been a part of this team for the last five years especially Justin [Marks] and Kyle [Larson] believing in me and giving me this opportunity. We have had a lot of success and I am grateful.”
It was announced last month that KLR and Stewart would be parting ways. Stewart is set to join CJB Motorsports next year for the World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series season.
|TRACK: The Dirt Track at Charlotte
QUALIFYING FLIGHT 2: 6th
DASH 2 STARTING POSITION: 4th
FEATURE STARTING POSITION: 4th
TRACK: The Dirt Track at Charlotte
|DATE: November 2, 2018
HEAT RACE: 2nd
DASH 2 FINISH: 2nd
FEATURE FINISH: 28th
DATE: November 3, 2018