Josh Hammer racing update 2005-04-11

Josh Hamner Goes From ACTs to SLMs in One Day 17-Year-Old Preps for College before Finishing Top-5 at Montgomery, AL CHELSEA, AL (April 11, 2005) -- A lot of racecar drivers prepare for races in different ways. Some like to be left alone; they...

Josh Hamner Goes From ACTs to SLMs in One Day
17-Year-Old Preps for College before Finishing Top-5 at Montgomery, AL

CHELSEA, AL (April 11, 2005) -- A lot of racecar drivers prepare for races in different ways. Some like to be left alone; they sit by themselves and think of the upcoming race. Others like to rock out with loud music to psych themselves up. Others are superstitious and eat something particular before an event.

Well, 17-year-old Josh Hamner likes to take college entrance exams.

Not really, but that was the case this past weekend, as Hamner double-dipped on Saturday. In the morning, Hamner spent four hours taking the ACT test, which is one of two standardized tests that help colleges determine student's academic knowledge. In the afternoon, Hamner was on the fast track to Montgomery Motor Speedway, where he competed in the 125-lap Super Late Model event that evening.

And while his test results won't be known for several weeks, his racing results came back with a fourth-place finish.

"It was an interesting and very long day," said Hamner. "Those are two totally different worlds there, from sitting in a classroom with the utmost silence around you for four hours taking a test to sitting in a loud racecar for a couple of hours driving at high speeds and the sound of your car and other cars buzzing in your ear."

While Hamner felt pretty confident of his ACT test, he wasn't entirely happy with the night's Super Late Model race and how it unfolded. Mainly, he was unhappy with himself after getting into race leader and friend Charlie Bradberry while battling for the lead just past the midpoint of the event.

"I had a brain fart. That is all there is to it," said Hamner of the incident, which sent Bradberry spinning and into the outside wall. "My car was really good getting into the corner. And it looked like Charlie had to check up getting in. I knew (Jason) Hogan was coming. We still had to pit and I needed to be in front of Charlie for that. I got into him just a little bit, but he was also loose it looked like, so it didn't take much of a bump to send him around. I hate it.

"I came back to finish fourth, but that ruined the whole night."

Although Hamner was hard on himself, the end result was still very positive, especially considering that the last time at the track, Hamner had a disappointing 15th-place finish. This time around, the car was better and the finish was equally better.

"When I pitted, I had to come up through the back of the field, but I burnt up my stuff just trying to claw my way back up there. We got to fourth, but we ran out of time after that. That motor, though, is a beast. It is hard to keep that thing tied down coming up off the corner.

"I said that we'd pit when Charlie pitted, because I knew he would be good to follow up through the pack and get back to the front with," added Hamner who stayed out along with Bradberry when most of the others pitted around lap 70. "I was pretty happy with my car. I was just doing what Charlie was going to do. We were going to go as long as we could. It worked at Birmingham (AL), so we decided we were going to try that here.

"I feel pretty good about the weekend. We got another top five and the car is in one piece. We get to go to Pensacola (FL) next weekend, so we've got some momentum. We've still got some fine tuning to do, but we've got a lot to build on. I'm happy with everything, despite all that happened tonight."

-51ss-

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Series Stock car
Drivers Charlie Bradberry