Martinsville II: GM Racing preview

* Dennis Setzer, No. 85 E85 FlexFuel Silverado, has two NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series (NCTS) wins at Martinsville Speedway (MS) * Denny Hamlin will drive the No. 46 Econo Lodge/Rodeway Inn Silverado fielded by Morgan-Dollar ...

* Dennis Setzer, No. 85 E85 FlexFuel Silverado, has two NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series (NCTS) wins at Martinsville Speedway (MS)

* Denny Hamlin will drive the No. 46 Econo Lodge/Rodeway Inn Silverado fielded by Morgan-Dollar Motorsports

* Kyle Busch will be back behind the wheel of the No. 15 SunTrust/Manheim Auto Auctions Silverado fielded by Billy Ballew Motorsports

* Chevrolet Silverado has won six of the 11 NCTS Manufacturer's Championships

* Silverado drivers have won eight of the 11 possible NCTS' Driver Championships

* Silverado drivers have won more NCTS races than any other brand

Martinsville, VA - Team Chevy Silverado returns for the second time this season to the historic Martinsville (VA) Speedway for the 21st race of the 25-race NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series (NCTS) season. The paper clip-shaped .526-mile oval has been on the NCTS schedule since the inaugural 1995 season. The series began racing there twice a season in 2003.

With one of the most impressive records in NCTS competition at Martinsville, Dennis Setzer, No. 85 E85 FlexFuel Silverado, is ready for this weekend's event to culminate in his first trip to victory lane in 2006. Setzer has two wins, six top-five and eight top-10 runs in 13 Martinsville NCTS starts. In addition, Setzer has three NASCAR Busch Series (NBS) starts at the Virginia short track that netted one top-10 finish. He also has hundreds of laps in late model competition at the oval Setzer states is clearly his favorite track. Setzer finished ninth in the spring 2006 NCTS race.

Matt Crafton, No. 88 Menards/Energizer Silverado, finished third in the April 2006 event, tying his NCTS career best finish. Crafton sits poised to capture his career first victory and Martinsville sets the perfect stage for that scenario. In nine previous NCTS starts there, Crafton has one top-five and four top-10 finishes.

Two-time NCTS champion Ron Hornaday, Jr., No. 33 AES HR Solutions Silverado, has wins at virtually every track on the series schedule - except Martinsville. In eight previous starts, he has three top-five and four top-10 finishes. Given he is the all-time race winner in NCTS competition, (with 29 victories), and cut his teeth on short tracks, Hornaday will add the Martinsville jewel to his crown in the near future.

Mike Bliss, No. 16 Xpress Motorsports Silverado, has one pole, three top-five and three top-10 finishes in seven previous Martinsville starts. He too is poised for his first trip to victory lane this season.

Adding to the fire power of Team Chevy Silverado at Martinsville are NASCAR Nextel Cup Series Raybestos Rookie sensation Denny Hamlin, No. 46 Econo Lodge/Rodeway Inn Silverado and Kyle Busch, No. 15 SunTrust/Manheim Auto Auctions Silverado. It will be Hamlin's first NCTS event at Martinsville while Busch has one previous start that netted the young NNCS gun a top-five finish.

"It is pretty tough to predict how this race will unfold," said Dayne Pierantoni, GM Racing program manager NCTS. "The fastest truck doesn't always win. Last year we had nine cautions but pitting may not be an option. With the Goodyear tires that we are currently running I would expect some guys to try to go the entire distance on one set of tires. We'll have a little help from the Cup side with Denny Hamlin and Kyle Busch so it should be an exciting day."

Team Chevy Silverado
Driver Quotes

DRIVER: DENNIS SETZER
TEAM: No. 85 FlexFuel E85 Silverado - Morgan Dollar Motorsports

"Martinsville is such a great place to race at, it really is my favorite track to race at. We had a pretty good race here in the spring; we just ran so many laps under caution that it was really tough to pass other trucks. We spun with the #17 truck, and on the last restart, we just couldn't stay with the lead guys.

"I always look forward to going to Martinsville. I have gotten a few wins there in the past, and I hope that we can seal the deal with a win. Our guys are hungry for a win this year, and I hope we can get one for Chevrolet and Morgan-Dollar Motorsports this weekend."

DRIVER: DENNY HAMLIN
TEAM: No. 46 Econo Lodge/Rodeway Inn Silverado - Morgan Dollar Motorsports

"It is something I have been wanting to do, and talking about doing, for a while now. I have some good memories of the times I did run in the NCTS. I have been waiting for a good opportunity and when the chance came about to run the No. 46 Chevrolet Silverado I jumped at it. The No. 46 and the entire Chevy Truck program is really competitive so I am looking forward to getting behind the wheel. It's been a while but I think with some practice and this truck I should be able to find my way around Martinsville all right.

"I guess Martinsville is one of my home tracks. Growing up in Virginia I spent a lot of time at Martinsville running late models and it's a special place for me. The flat corners play to my strengths and I enjoy the fact that you really need to work on other drivers to pass them. It might take you a while but you have to keep after them and that makes Martinsville unique."

DRIVER:  RON HORNADAY

TEAM: No. 33 AES HR Solutions Silverado

"Well, Martinsville is a place that I love to race at, but I am still looking to get a win at the track. For some reason, we come close, but I can't seal the deal. A win at Martinsville would definitely be big, and I would love to get another win for Kevin, DeLana, and our new sponsor, AES HR Solutions before the season is over.

"The cool thing about Martinsville is that it puts the racing back in the hands of the drivers, and we are able to battle it out and fight for every position each lap. We don't really worry about aerodynamics there, and I am just going to work really hard to get a win for Chevrolet and everyone this weekend."

DRIVER:  ARIC ALMIROLA

TEAM: No. 75 Spears Manufacturing Silverado - Spears Motorsports

"As far as the spring race went, it was just the typical Martinsville deal. It is hard going there as a rookie and hoping that the other drivers will work with you, maybe even cut you a little break. The NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series is just so tough and the drivers are so good, every track we race at is difficult. In the spring at Martinsville, we got bounced around a lot and were only able to work ourselves back up into the top-20, and we finished 18th.

"I think the Spears team has been working really well together, Dave (McCarty, crew chief) and I are communicating well. I think with Martinsville being only the fourth race of the season, we were still getting used to each other and trying to figure everything out. Now, we can go back and hopefully get a good run and improve on our finish from the spring. Martinsville is a track that I really like to race at, so I can't wait to go back."

DRIVER:  MATT CRAFTON

TEAM: No. 88 Menards/Energizer Silverado - ThorSport Racing

"Martinsville is back to short track racing where so many of the guys in the Truck Series started, which is really neat. I like Martinsville because of the tight corners, and the racing always seems to be so exciting. The fans are awesome too, which helps because it gets all the drivers pumped up. It is also really easy to get shuffled to the back of the field if your aren't careful, and trouble starts so easily, so that is going to be a goal of ours: stay out of trouble and be there at the finish. The team had a great run here in the spring, and we finished third. We are so thirsty for a win, and have been close in the past, and I really want to go to Martinsville and have a good run for Chevrolet and our team."

DRIVER:  MIKE BLISS

TEAM: No. 16 Xpress Motorsports Silverado

"Martinsville is a track that really suits my driving style. I love the tight corners, and we really can get some speed going, even though the track is so small. I look forward to the short track racing every year, and I hope the Xpress Motorsports team can get some momentum back and head into the final few races with a shot at a win. I have a pole and some good finishes at Martinsville, and I know that the team can get another great finish this weekend."

DRIVER:  SHANE HUFFMAN

TEAM: No. 40 Key Mottorsports Silverado

"I'm looking forward to this opportunity for some increased seat time as we continue to ramp up for our 2007 NASCAR Busch Series season effort with JR Motorsports. The U.S. Navy supported the concept, and I have to thank them. It's rare in this sport to have a sponsor that understands and supports the idea of me gaining as much experience as possible."

DRIVER: KYLE BUSCH
TEAM: No. 15 SunTrust/Manheim Auto Auctions Silverado - Billy Ballew Motorsports

"Racing in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series is always fun for me and I do it for a few reasons. I need all the track experience at Martinsville I can get, because before my rookie season I had never seen the place. Running on Saturday is fun because Richie Wauters always gives me the best truck out there and we hope to get a win for Suntrust and also I can learn what I need to do for Sunday's race. It's mostly all about experience and fun. Martinsville is always exciting with the trucks because that place is so small it's an action packed race with everyone beating and banging on each other. I can't wait."

-credit: gm racing

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About this article
Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Ron Hornaday Jr. , Dennis Setzer , Matt Crafton , Mike Bliss , Denny Hamlin , Kyle Busch
Teams JR Motorsports