Jimmy Hensley Daytona Post Race, Homestead Preview

HOMESTEAD, FL (Feb. 21, 2000) -- You can't blame Jimmy Hensley if he'd like to forget the Daytona 250 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race at Daytona International Speedway. After all, just about anything that could go wrong for the veteran ...

HOMESTEAD, FL (Feb. 21, 2000) -- You can't blame Jimmy Hensley if he'd like to forget the Daytona 250 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race at Daytona International Speedway. After all, just about anything that could go wrong for the veteran Virginia driver did during the series inaugural visit to the famed speedway. "We had a pretty tough week," said Hensley, who was one of 10 drivers caught up in a grinding wreck on Lap 56 of the event. "It was like the only luck we had was bad luck. I was really looking forward to Daytona but now that it's over, all I want to do is forget it." Hensley's week started out on a sour note when the engine in his #16 Team Rensi Chevrolet burned a piston on the second lap of the first practice. While the team did a stellar job of getting the engine swapped out for a new one, the process took the entire first practice session losing precious track time in the process. Despite the problem, Hensley managed to qualify the truck 17th and was looking forward to the race. Initially, Hensley appeared to be in contention for the win as he quickly sliced his way into the Top 10. A flat left-rear tire then sent him to the pits putting him one lap down to the leaders. "That killed us right there," said Hensley. "We tried hard but we never recovered from that. We thought we got our lap back before that last caution, but NASCAR didn't see it that way and put us to the back of the longest line on the restart. That put us right in the middle of the big wreck. There was nothing I could do but hang on. "I didn't really see how it started," said Hensley of the melee. "All I know is there was a lot of smoke and fire. I thought I had it missed, but when you have that many trucks crashing and spinning, there's not much chance of getting through. I'm just happy no one was critically injured." Hensley was officially credited with 29th position in the final running order and earned $11,992 for the effort. Next up for the "Virginia Gentleman" and his Team Rensi mates will be the Florida Dodge Dealers 400 at Homestead Miami Speedway this Saturday. According to Hensley, he has a score to settle with the 1.5-mile Homestead oval. "I had a really good run going there last year when the engine let go," said Hensley, who started sixth and finished 29th in the 1999 Homestead event. "I really thought I had a shot at winning that one. Hopefully, we can avoid the bad luck this time around and park our truck in Victory Lane at the end of the day." The Homestead event will be telecast on ESPN2 at 3:30 p.m. Saturday.

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Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Jimmy Hensley