Loudon: GM Racing preview

Ron Hornaday, Jr. Leads Team Chevy Silverado to Loudon, New Hampshire Chevrolet Silverado drivers have scored four wins in 11 previous NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series (NCTS) races at New Hampshire International Speedway (NHIS) Loudon, NH -...

Ron Hornaday, Jr. Leads Team Chevy Silverado to Loudon, New Hampshire

Chevrolet Silverado drivers have scored four wins in 11 previous NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series (NCTS) races at New Hampshire International Speedway (NHIS)

Loudon, NH - With eight races remaining in the 2007 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series (NCTS) schedule, Ron Hornaday, Jr., No. 33 Camping World Silverado, is sitting exactly where he and his Rick Ren-led Kevin Harvick, Inc. (KHI) team have worked hard to be - No. 1 in the standings.

With three wins, nine top-five and 16 top-10 finishes in the 17 NCTS races run thus far in 2007, the two-time NCTS champion leads Team Chevy Silverado to New Hampshire International Speedway (NHIS) for the New Hampshire 200.

Hornaday, a perennial favorite in NCTS competition, has a solid record at NHIS, which doesn't bode well for the competition but plays right into his hands as he contends for his third NCTS championship. In six previous NHIS starts, Hornaday has one victory, two top-five and four top-10 finishes.

"What can I say about Loudon, " said Hornaday. "Except that I really enjoy the track. I have led laps in most of the races there and gone to victory lane once. Like I always say -- my favorite tracks are the ones I win at.

"Loudon reminds me a little of Milwaukee and I like racing there also. I'm just excited to be going there with Rick Ren. Rick and I both have had success there in the past, so I'm anxious to see what will happen with us working together." Hard - charging Clint Bowyer will pilot the second KHI entry, No. 2 Camping World Silverado. The full-time Richard Childress Racing driver will be making his third NCTS start of the season and the sixth of his career.

"The trucks are great to drive," said Bowyer, who is one of the 12 drivers qualified for the Chase to the Nextel Cup. "Because you can put them in a bunch of different situations on the track that you can't put a Cup car in. "New Hampshire is a track I really like. I led laps there last year in the truck race, and I really felt like I had a shot to win. I'm looking forward to getting back in the Camping World truck and having the same experience this time around."

Another Chase-contending driver, Kyle Busch, Hendrick Motorsports, will be back behind the wheel of the No. 51 Billy Ballew Motorsports (BBM) Silverado for the fifth time this season.

"We were really tight last year except when in clean air", Busch said. "Once I got upfront into the lead I had all the air I needed but was getting killed through the corners. I was able to lead a few laps but Benson and Skinner were both able to get around me and we brought home third. I'm sure Richie (Wauters, crew chief) and the guys on the No. 51 Billy Ballew team have taken a look at the tight conditions from last year and have it all figured out for this weekend. It's always a lot of fun to get out there in these trucks with Billy and all the guys. We have a lot of fun and I'm ready to get Billy his first win of the season."

Shane Sieg will pilot the second BBM entry, the No. 15 Swift Transportation Silverado.

"It is a great opportunity for me to drive Billy Ballew's equipment," Sieg said. "His trucks have the reputation of being fast and I'm looking forward to seeing what we can do in the No. 15 Silverado. Loudon is a great track to race on with the flat corners and fast straights so it should be an exciting race for the drivers and the fans. I can't thank Swift Transportation enough for stepping up and sponsoring us for the New Hampshire race. They are a great company to work with and we hope to just get our Chevy upfront and be consistent throughout the 200 lap race."

Brendan Gaughan, No. 77 South Point Hotel Silverado, heads to New Hampshire on the momentum of consecutive top-10 finishes.

"Last year we actually had a good truck," recalls Gaughan. "I went to pass somebody - a lapper - and I got up in the marbles and wrecked the truck pretty badly. It's one of those things - driver error. I can't say it was anybody else's fault. I just wasn't patient enough around lap traffic.

The Las Vegas, NV native concluded by saying: "New Hampshire - it's always been a really good track for this race team. The more difficult the track, the better this race team performs. Look at my history at Darlington and Bristol and those places that people always say they hate, I went into saying that I love them. And New Hampshire is one of those tracks that everyone says they hate. They say it's too flat, it needs banking. I love it because everybody else hates it. I go in with a better attitude, and it has worked out well for me.

"It's a fun race track. It's challenging. It's tough. It's very difficult, and the more difficult - the more I step up to the plate."

Practice for the New Hampshire 200 will commence on Friday, September 14 at 9:40 a.m. Final practice will conclude at 3:00 p.m. Friday with qualifying scheduled to begin at 10:05 a.m. on Saturday, September 15, 2007. NASCAR will then impound the 36 trucks qualified to start the 200-lap/211.6-mile race scheduled for 3:00 p.m. Saturday. Live television will be provided by SPEED. MRN Radio and Sirius Satellite Radio will carry the action live over the airwaves.

-credit: gm racing

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Series NASCAR-TRUCK