LAS VEGAS, NV (Oct. 14, 2001) - Ricky Hendrick and the No. 17 GMAC Financial Services Chevrolet Silverado scored a sixth-place finish in The Orleans 350 as the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series returned to Las Vegas Motor Speedway after a one-year ...
LAS VEGAS, NV (Oct. 14, 2001) - Ricky Hendrick and the No. 17 GMAC Financial Services Chevrolet Silverado scored a sixth-place finish in The Orleans 350 as the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series returned to Las Vegas Motor Speedway after a one-year hiatus from the circuit. The 21-year old rookie never dipped out of the Top-10 during the 146-lap event on the 1.5-mile LVMS oval. "We are learning every week," said Hendrick. "Overall, it was a good day. We are here to learn and we work hard every week. We raced hard and did what we could on the racetrack. We were so much better in the race than we had been in practice. At times The GMAC Chevy was the fastest truck on the track. We just wanted more." The race came down to the final laps with the leaders fighting three-wide for position. Some of the hardest racing of the event came between Hendrick and Rick Crawford as they battled for fifth place. "There was some rough racing out there today," said Hendrick. "There could have been some big wrecks out there. Some people were racing hard against people who are fighting the championship points battle. Crawford and I were really going at it. We were racing close, neither one of us gave the other anything." A trio of strong pit stops kept the GMAC Chevy in the Top-10 throughout the event. In the end, a few minor chassis adjustments and fresh tires gave Hendrick what he needed to win the fight to the finish. "We communicated well and made good adjustments tonight," said Hendrick. "I've never worked so hard as I did tonight. Our final stop and fresh tires helped, but the competition was stiff tonight and sixth-place was the best we could do." Hendrick earned $ 10,500 for the effort and remains sixth in the championship point battle, 221 points out of first place. Hendrick remains second in the Raybestos Rookie of the Year campaign, 15 points out of the top spot. "Team GMAC worked really hard for this sixth-place finish," said Hendrick. "Another Top-10 finish is great, but it's too bad we didn't beat Travis (Kvapil). They really have their program dialed in. It's going to be really tough to beat him for the Rookie title with only two races to go." Hendrick's No. 17 GMAC Financial Services NCTS entry will next compete in the Chevy Silverado 150 at Phoenix International Raceway, Friday, October 26 at 6:30 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time. The 23rd race of the 24-event
NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series tour will be broadcast live ESPN and MRN radio network.