On Saturday night, Brad Sweet did something that only two other drivers had done since 2006: beat Donny Schatz for a World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series championship. And while he now can call himself a champion, ‘The Big Cat’ has always worn more than one hat while competing full-time with the Outlaws.
The 2018 Knoxville Nationals champion has promoted races in his home state of California over the past several years, including World of Outlaws shows at Silver Dollar Speedway, Stockton Dirt Track, and Placerville Speedway. However, he announced on Speed51.com’s The Morning Bullring that Brad Sweet Promotions will be taking a step back for the 2020 season.
“I kind of overdid it this year, to be honest. I did some other events, I did some stuff with Kyle Larson, we did a little Speedweek out in California. It was just too much with all my traveling so I feel like this year I’ll pull back just a little bit and try to enjoy the racing side of it,” Sweet said. “I’m pretty sure a promoting gig will come up again sooner or later and I’ll be back on that side of things, but I just want to kind of take a little break from it.”
Sweet calls his time as a promoter as one of the most rewarding experiences he’s had in his career. It has opened his eyes at the track from multiple perspectives. While he is not planning on promoting races in the near future, he is also not ruling out jumping back into the fray down the road.
“It’s a great experience as far as it definitely opened my eyes to a lot of different sides of the business. I don’t necessarily go to a race and look at it from just the driver’s standpoint now, I understand the business model and how it has to work for the promoter, for the series, for the drivers, there’s just a lot that goes into it,” he stated. “I like that side but I’ve learned that being a promoter is very stressful. It’s not something that I’m going to do a whole bunch next year, I’m going to focus more on just driving the car but I’m definitely happy I’ve done it. If the opportunity presents itself again for the right event, I’d love to do it and to keep being a part of it.”
Sweet went on to explain the hectic schedule that goes with an 80-plus race season that the Outlaws provides. It is one of the most grueling race schedules in all of motorsports.
“We still really can’t fly to a race because they’re all so close, they’re in smaller towns most of the time and we’re racing three to four nights a week. A lot of those guys still travel in motorhomes,” he said. “I still travel with the team a lot. There’s times where I won’t get home for six weeks, maybe two months through the season. The summers are definitely a grind, it’s just different being on the World of Outlaws tour than say, local racing. It’s just a different lifestyle. We obviously don’t want to do it forever but we want to win while we’re doing it.”
While he steps away from the promoting side, Sweet will put all his focus into driving the Kasey Kahne Racing No.49 with just one thing in mind.
“Once you’re on top it’s hard to be satisfied with anything except being on top,” he said. “Just once you get the feeling of winning the Knoxville Nationals, a championship, a King’s Royal, you’re never going to be satisfied leaving those races or at the end of the year not the champion or not winning the Knoxville Nationals. We want to sustain it, we have a great team, we work really hard to get to this place. We don’t want to fall off, we want to make a run just like Donny’s made. We want to etch our name in the history books and be a multi-time champion, multi-time Knoxville Nationals champion, and a multi-time King’s Royal winner, and any of the other bigger races.”
Interviews and recaps from all three nights from the World Finals at The Dirt Track at Charlotte can now be viewed on the Speed51 Network. Click here to subscribe today.
-Story by: Koty Geyer, Speed51.com State Editor (IN/MI) – @Twitter: @kgeyer3
-Photo Credit: Speed51.com