The “Greatest Show on Dirt” is back. The Knoxville Nationals return after being canceled in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, setting the stage for the world’s best dirt drivers to return to the premier event of the season.

In preparation for the 2021 race, here’s a recap of the last two Knoxville Nationals to get you caught up to speed:

The 2020 Knoxville Nationals were close to getting underway, but a fall surge of the coronavirus pandemic forced raceway officials and the Marion County Fair Board to cancel in late June of 2020.

Raceway officials attempted to hold the race with a modified event approach, but when it was not approved by local officials, the event was canceled for the season.

“Since March, we have collaborated on several different plans with the state and local officials to make the Knoxville Nationals happen,” Marion County Fair Board President Brian Bailey said after canceling the race in June 2020. “In the end, we were just up against too many obstacles to make the event happen safely and at the level expected of the Knoxville Nationals.”

David Gravel was crowned the winner of the 59th annual Knoxville Nationals in 2019, with plenty of storylines coming together for him and his team.

In 2016, Jason Johnson was victorious in Knoxville in the same race, only for Gravel to win driving the Jason Johnson Racing No. 41 car across victory lane two years later.

Gravel had built a big lead around lap 30 and would not be challenged, but Schuchart kept the fans entertained with a pass of Kaeding for third with nine to go. He reeled in Pittman on the last lap to claim the second place $75,000 bounty. Following the lead trio was Kaeding and Reutzel. Sweet, Haudenschild, James McFadden, Schatz and Gio Scelzi rounded out the top ten.

Gravel’s crew chief Phil Dietz was awarded a toolbox from Gear Wrench for “Crew Chief of the Nationals.” The team also won the Best Appearing Car Award ($500) and Best Appearing Crew Award ($500). Bobby Mincer ($250) and Chris Martin ($150) were second and third in Best Appearing Car, while Matt Juhl’s team ($250) and Dominic Scelzi’s crew ($150) were named Best Appearing.

Tanner Thorson was the first ever entry from Nevada, and won Rookie of the Knoxville Nationals honors ($1,000). Premier Speedway awarded $1,000 to Carson Macedo, the top finishing participant in the 2019 Grand Annual Classic who didn’t qualify for the A main. James McFadden won the $2,000 Southern Iowa Sprint Week Beaver Drill & Tool Jesse Hockett “Mr. Sprint Car” Award, followed by Aaron Reutzel ($1,250) and Cory Eliason ($750).

“This is awesome!” said Gravel in Victory Lane back in 2019. “I don’t know what to say. It was a dream week. Brad Sweet killed it last year, and we kind of repeated what he did. To have Jeff Gordon and Axalta keep this team going made it all worth it. I’m numb. I wasn’t that tired in the car, but after the checkered, it sinks in and you feel like you have boulders on your shoulders. It’s surreal really. I was happy to have the lead at the halfway point and control my own destiny. We made an adjustment there at the red and made the car better. We just snugged up a little bit.”

2019 Knoxville Nationals results August 10, 2019 410 RESULTS

E main, 10 Laps, No Time: 1. Jason Sides (1); 2. Joey Moughan (2); 3. Mason Daniel (3); 4. Kevin Thomas Jr. (5); 5. Harli White (7); 6. Caleb Helms (9); 7. Glen Saville (4); 8. Tom Harris (10); 9. Brodie Tulloch (6); 10. Bobby Mincer (12); 11. John Garvin (14); 12. Joe Simbro (11); 13. Chase Wanner (15); 14. Kevin Ingle (13); 15. Adam Cruea (16);

59th Annual NOS Energy Drink Knoxville Nationals presented by Casey’s General Stores Results

E main, 10 Laps, 2:47.7: 1. 7JS, Jason Sides, Bartlett, TN (1); 2. 73AF, Joey Moughan, Springfield, IL (2); 3. 33m, Mason Daniel, Springville, CA (3); 4. 19T, Kevin Thomas Jr., Cullman, AL (5); 5. 17wx, Harli White, Lindsay, OK (7); 6. 17XL, Caleb Helms, Findlay, OH (9) / 7. 75, Glen Saville, Razorback, NSW, Aust. (4); 8. 84, Tom Harris, Banbury, OXFD, UK (8); 9. 74, Brodie Tulloch, Upper Caboolture, QLD, Aust. (6); 10. 15M, Bobby Mincer, Burlington, IA (10); 11. J4, John Garvin, Sarver, PA (12); 12. 56, Joe Simbro, Pleasantville, IA (11); 13. 85, Chase Wanner, Ottumwa, IA (15); 14. 2K, Kevin Ingle, Huron, SD (13); 15. 83c, Adam Cruea, Troy, OH (14) DNS – 64, Scotty Thiel, Sheboygan, WI; 5J, Jamie Ball, Knoxville, IA; 11c, Roger Crockett, Broken Arrow, OK; 48, Danny Dietrich, Gettysburg, PA; 40, Clint Garner, Sioux Falls, SD; 3H, Jac Haudenschild, Wooster, OH; 19P, Paige Polyak, Tiffin, OH; 2AU, Andrew Scheuerle, Toowoomba, QLD, Aust.; 2mm, Matt Moro, Polk City, IA; 57, Kyle Larson, Elk Grove, CA; 11T, TJ Stutts, Liverpool, PA; 18M, Lance Moss, Cherryville, NC; 53, Jack Dover, Springfield, NE; 35, Zach Hampton, Plainfield, IN

D main (started), 12 Laps, NT: 1. 56N, Davey Heskin, St. Michael, MN (2); 2. 45, Rusty Hickman, Bendigo, VIC, Aust. (1); 3. 7, Craig Dollansky, Elk River, MN (3); 4. 17w, Shane Golobic, Fremont, CA (4) / 5. 55, Brooke Tatnell, Sans Souci, NSW, Aust. (10) ($1,175 bonus from Trunk Bar); 6. 68, Chase Johnson, Penngrove, CA (8); 7. 99x, Skylar Gee, Leduc, ALB, Can. (9); 8. 3P, Sawyer Phillips, Pleasantville, IA (6); 9. W20, Greg Wilson, Benton Ridge, OH (7); 10. 18R, Ryan Roberts, Aurora, NE (12); 11. 3c, Cale Conley, Vienna, WV (11); 12. 44, Chris Martin, Ankeny, IA (5); 13. 9x, Jake Bubak, Arvada, CO (14); 14. Kevin Thomas Jr. (20); 15. Jason Sides (19); 16. 21P, Robbie Price, Cobble Hill, BC, Can. (16); 17. 29, Willie Croft, Roseville, CA (17); 18. Joey Moughan (18); 19. Mason Daniel (21); 20. Caleb Helms (22); 21. 9JR, Derek Hagar, Marion, AR (15); 22. 20, AJ Moeller, Rockwell City, IA (13); 23. Harli White (23); 24. 28P, Brian Paulus, Mooresville, IN (24) DNS – 2c, Wayne Johnson, Tuttle, OK; 51, Freddie Rahmer, Salfordville, PA

C main (started), 15 Laps, NT: 1. 71BC, Tyler Courtney, Indianapolis, IN (1); 2. 91, Cale Thomas, Fairland, IN (4); 3. 21, Brian Brown, Grain Valley, MO (8); 4. 27, Carson McCarl, Altoona, IA (2) / 5. 83J, Lynton Jeffrey, Prairie City, IA (9) ($100 bonus from Big River Garage Doors); 6. 21K, Thomas Kennedy, Winnipeg, MB, Can. (7); 7. 15H, Sam Hafertepe Jr., Sunnyvale, TX (3); 8. 35P, Skylar Prochaska, Lakefield, MN (6); 9. 99x, Brady Bacon, Broken Arrow, OK (12); 10. 49J, Josh Schneiderman, West Burlington, IA (11); 11. 1, Travis Rilat, Heath, TX (5); 12. 7x, Justin Henderson, Tea, SD (10); 13. 18s, Jason Solwold, Mt. Vernon, WA (15); 14. Shane Golobic (24); 15. 39M, Anthony Macri, Dillsburg, PA (13); 16. Davey Heskin (21); 17. Rusty Hickman (22); 18. 10, RJ Johnson, Tampa, FL (18); 19. 7sw, Jeff Swindell, Bartlett, TN (14); 20. 92, Sye Lynch, Apollo, PA (17); 21. Craig Dollansky (23); 22. 14M, Marcus Dumesny, Sydney, NSW, Aust. (16); 23. 1x, Don Droud Jr., Lincoln, NE (20); 24. 70x, Justin Peck, Monrovia, IN (19)

B main (started), 22 Laps, NT: 1. 71, Gio Scelzi, Fresno, CA (2); 2. 15, Donny Schatz, Fargo, ND (4); 3. 9, James McFadden, Warrnambool, VIC, Aust. (1); 4. 24, Rico Abreu, St. Helena, CA (3) / 5. 2, Carson Macedo, Lemoore, CA (8); 6. 13, Mark Dobmeier, Grand Forks, ND (5); 7. 70, Brock Zearfoss, Jonestown, PA (9); 8. 28, Scott Bogucki, McLaren Vale, SA (6); 9. 2KS, Austin McCarl, Altoona, IA (11); 10. 1a, Jacob Allen, Hanover, PA (10); 11. 11K, Kraig Kinser, Bloomington, IN (15); 12. Brian Brown (23); 13. 39, Sammy Swindell, Lakeland, TN (14); 14. K4, Chad Kemenah, Alvada, OH (19); 15. 7TAZ, Tasker Phillips, Pleasantville, IA (20); 16. 17BX, Bill Balog, Hartland, WI (16); 17. Tyler Courtney (21); 18. Carson McCarl (24); 19. 11, Hunter Schuerenberg, Sikeston, MO (17); 20. 88, Tanner Thorson, Minden, NV (7); 21. Cale Thomas (22); 22. 17B, Josh Baughman, Odessa, TX (13); 23. 5H, Spencer Bayston, Lebanon, IN (12); 24. 4, Terry McCarl, Altoona, IA (18)

A main (started), 50 Laps, NT: 1. 41, David Gravel, Watertown, CT (2); 2. 1s, Logan Schuchart, Hanover, PA (22); 3. 83, Daryn Pittman, Owasso, OK (10); 4. 7s, Tim Kaeding, San Jose, CA (7); 5. 87, Aaron Reutzel, Clute, TX (1); 6. 49, Brad Sweet, Grass Valley, CA (6); 7. 17, Sheldon Haudenschild, Wooster, OH (15); 8. James McFadden (19); 9. Donny Schatz (18); 10. Gio Scelzi (17); 11. 2m, Kerry Madsen, St. Mary’s, NSW, Aust. (21); 12. 5, Shane Stewart, Bixby, OK (23); 13. 26, Cory Eliason, Visalia, CA (13); 14. 12N, Joey Saldana, Brownsburg, IN (3); 15. 18, Ian Madsen, St. Mary’s, NSW, Aust. (14); 16. 71P, Parker Price-Miller, Kokomo, IN (5); 17. 19, Brent Marks, Myerstown, PA (9); 18. 09, Matt Juhl, Tea, SD (12); 19. 44s, Trey Starks, Puyallup, WA (11); 20. 13x, Paul McMahan, Nashville, TN (8); 21. 49x, Tim Shaffer, Aliquippa, PA (4); 22. Rico Abreu (20); 23. 69K, Lance Dewease, Fayetteville, PA (16); 24. 41s, Dominic Scelzi, Fresno, CA (24). Lap Leaders: Reutzel 1, Saldana 2-3, Reutzel 4-13, Gravel 14-50. MPI Hard-charger (steering wheel): Schuchart. SprintCarUnlimited.com $2,000 Pole Sitter: Reutzel. Gear Wrench Crew Chief of the Nationals: Phil Dietz (toolbox).

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