Stewart staged a scintillating run, securing the final transfer spot on the final lap of the B-Main. Starting from the back of the 25-lap opening night A-Main, Stewart charged through to finish in fourth placing. With eight laps remaining, Stewart had climbed as high as fifth.
Multiple Champion, Donny Schatz didn’t have the best start to his Nationals campaign, ending his night after just seven laps in the A-Main. Schatz was carving his way through the field with quickest time setter, Brad Sweet.
When the pair came up to get by A-Main pole-sitter, Joey Moughan – Sweet got through, but Schatz touched Moughan. Moughan scraped the wall, but continued on, whilst Schatz’s car erupted into a fireball – and put him on the sidelines for the rest of the night.
Minnesota racer, Davey Heskin put in an outstanding performance to be trading blows with Sweet and then Swindell at the head of the pack. Ultimately, Heskin – who started on the front row – was able to hold onto second behind Swindell.
Sweet came home in third placing, with Stewart in fourth.
Steve Kinser rounded out the top five.
Lynton Jeffrey was the best placed of the two Australians in the field, finishing the A-Main in 10th placing. Earlier, he won his heat race (heat five) and time trialled 30th out of the 45 cars that trialled.
Sydney-sider Bruce White time trialled 42nd and finished ninth in his heat (heat two). He later dropped out of the B-Main with a mechanical issue.
Tomorrow’s action sees Australia’s big guns at the Knoxville Nationals come out to play – in Brooke Tatnell and the Madsen Brothers – Kerry (aboard an Australian owned Keneric Racing car) and Ian.
VIDEO: Sammy Swindell recaps night one of the Goodyear Knoxville Nationals: