Concord, N.C. --- Although the race at Texas Motor Speedway will be only their ninth start together in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, the Oakwood Homes Racing Team has a long history together. A rookie season in the Truck series doesn't mean that the Oakwood crew is struggling to find team chemistry either. The Oakwood Homes Team has many veterans of Ken Schrader Racing, including rookie crew chief Wally Brown. Scott Hansen signed on with Ken Schrader Racing in 1996 to drive full-time in the American Speed Association. At the same time, Craig Smokstad, Mike Senyitko, Alan Klecker and Joe Miller signed on with Schrader to work with Hansen on the ASA circuit. Throughout their four years at Schrader Racing, they have worked hard and had fun, knowing that their success would come. Their philosophy seems to have worked as Hansen finished second in the year-end points standings in 1997 and 1998. The team also won nine races in two years. While Hansen and crew were working to win in the ASA series, Brown, Dale Hoffman, Huffy Hoffman and Cale Berry were working to get Ken Schrader to victory lane in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. Today, they are all part of the Oakwood Homes Racing Team and continue to enjoy success at Ken Schrader Racing. Hansen and the crew made the jump to the Truck Series when Oakwood Homes singed on as primary sponsor of the No. 52 Chevrolet. The veteran racers joined the existing team members as Brown, a rookie crew chief in 1999, was named to lead Hansen and the Oakwood Home team to victory lane. Though all the crew members are veterans at Ken Schrader Racing, this is their first stint together as one team. Racing out of the same shop for three years made for an easy transition when Hansen and the crew moved up to form the Oakwood team. "We all work really well together," Hansen said. "All of these guys are very talented and have a lot to offer this team. So when we are at the shop, everyone plays an integral part in the team. The guys from last year's truck team offer a great deal of knowledge as to what has worked in the past, and the new guys offer a brand new perspective on things." The mix of people on the Oakwood Homes Racing Team provides a perfect mix of youth and experience. Hansen is a rookie in the truck series, even though he has 24 years of racing experience, and this is Brown's first year as a crew chief. So far the combination has been a success. "We are the basic essentials of a team," Brown said. "We all like and respect one another's opinions. We may not always agree, but everyone's suggestions are put into consideration. I think that is what builds a successful race team. It is too much pressure for one man to run the show, and you could miss out on so many ideas if everyone did not participate. "With Scott's experience in the ASA series, his history with the team and everything I've learned in my career, I think the Oakwood Homes team is a solid contender for a win."
Added: 27/05/1999 12:19
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