Loudon: Ron Hornaday preview

RON HORNADAY Looking for Momentum Huntersville, N.C. (September 13, 2005) -- Last week at Richmond (Va.) International Raceway, Ron Hornaday and his GM Goodwrench team quietly finished in the top-10 for the eighth time this season. The ...

RON HORNADAY
Looking for Momentum

Huntersville, N.C. (September 13, 2005) -- Last week at Richmond (Va.) International Raceway, Ron Hornaday and his GM Goodwrench team quietly finished in the top-10 for the eighth time this season. The goal was to win the race, but after struggling in practice it was apparent that all things would have to go just right for the No. 6 Chevrolet to have a respectable finish. What needed to happen did, and for a team that has had so much go wrong this season, things seemed to finally go in the favor of the silver and black Silverado. They didn't get the win, but they got the most out of what they had, and heading into New Hampshire this weekend they are hoping to build on that momentum.

"Normally we are a team that prides itself on wins," explains crew chief Wally Rogers. "Unfortunately we haven't had anything to get excited about since Atlanta. So far this season, except for Atlanta, every time that we have looked good something has gone wrong and costs us. Last week we looked bad, but things fell into place and we got a decent finish. It may be small, but I think that there is some momentum there and we need to capitalize on that this weekend."

With only seven races remaining in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series season time has become a factor. The championship race has tightened up, but Hornaday, now in third place (193 markers out), has a lot of work to do. If the team can build on last week's solid performance and put together a few wins in these final races, Hornaday should be right there battling for the championship trophy by season's end. New Hampshire International Speedway (NHIS) is the perfect place for that strong finish to begin. In four starts at the 1.058-mile paved oval Hornaday has two-top 10 finishes including a win in 1996.

"We feel like this is the week," says Hornaday. "This is clearly a charged up team. We have had our highs this season and we have had our lows, but as it stands we are in third place right now. That is enough to make it interesting. We have seen what a few wins can do for a team, and we know we are capable of making a run. If anything, we are due, and I think that if we can get off to a strong start this weekend, we can make some good things happen."

Points of Interest...

* Off the Hauler...Team GM Goodwrench will take chassis No. 007 to the Granite State for this Saturday's race. This truck has two top-5 finishes this season and most recently ran at Indianapolis Raceway Park where it finished third.

* Track Stat... Hornaday has four NCTS starts at New Hampshire International Speedway. He has led 80 laps with two top 10 finishes and has won the race once back in 1996. During his NASCAR Busch Series career Hornaday twice finished in the top-10 at NHIS. He also has two Cup Series starts at NHIS.

* Repeat Winner... Hornaday will be amongst five other drivers attempting to become the first repeat winner at NHIS. Those drivers include Dennis Setzer, Jack Sprague, Terry Cook, and Jimmy Spencer.

* NCTS Points...After 18 races in the 2005 season, Hornaday sits third in points with one win, five top-five and eight top-10 finishes. Hornaday sits 193 markers behind point's leader Dennis Setzer.

* Start time... Saturday afternoon's Sylvania 200 is scheduled for 3:15 p.m. EDT. TV coverage of the event on SPEED Channel begins at 3:00 p.m., with live radio coverage also beginning at 3:00 p.m. EDT on your local MRN Radio affiliate and on XM Satellite Radio -- channel 144. Remember times and dates of the race may change so check your local listings.

No. 6 GM Goodwrench Driver Ron Hornaday on New Hampshire International Speedway...

What do you think about racing at NHIS?

"This is a track that is very similar to Milwaukee. Your truck set-up may even start out the same. However, the racing is quite different. They have added a second groove which has made the racing even more interesting. There are two ways around the track now, but I still feel like being on the bottom is the best way around."

Do you prefer the one day events, or do you like it better when it is split up between two days?

"I would have to say that both have their advantages. Of course it is nice getting everything done and over with on the one day shows. The problem comes when the practice set-ups are put together during the day, and the race is at night. That leaves a lot of guess work, and sometimes it can hurt you. It can also be an advantage to the teams with a little more experience. Either way it is racing and I enjoy it. Everyone is under the same circumstances so there is nothing to complain about. "

Do you have a realistic shot of catching up with Dennis Setzer in the championship race?

"Of course we do. I know that it is going to be difficult, but we are by no means out of it. Our team still feels like it has a string of victories that we can put together, and if that happens it will certainly help our chances. Things are going to have to fall our way, but if we can do what we are capable of, I think that we have a chance."

-khi-

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About this article
Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Jimmy Spencer , Ron Hornaday Jr. , Jack Sprague , Dennis Setzer , Terry Cook