Hillin is Back at Dover

Hillin is on the way back Brett Borden DOVER, Del. (May 30, 1998) It's been a tough row to hoe this year for Bobby Hillin Jr. The NASCAR Busch Series Grand National Division has proved almost as difficult as the NASCAR Winston Cup Series was...

Hillin is on the way back Brett Borden

DOVER, Del. (May 30, 1998) It's been a tough row to hoe this year for Bobby Hillin Jr. The NASCAR Busch Series Grand National Division has proved almost as difficult as the NASCAR Winston Cup Series was for the veteran Texas driver.

But Saturday in the MBNA Platinum 200 at Dover Downs International Speedway, Hillin showed why he has hung in there despite years of coming up short of the expectations set for someone who won a NASCAR Winston Cup Series race at the age of 21.

Hillin came in second to Dale Earnhardt Jr. in his second encouraging performance in a row. Hillin finished ninth in the May 23 Carquest Auto Parts 300 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

"We're excited about it," Hillin said. "We've known all along that we can be competitive. The guys have all been upbeat despite some of the problems we've had this year. These guys have been strong, and they never lost their confidence in me, and I never lost mine in them, either."

Hillin overcame every obstacle but a front tire that was going down late in the race.

"I won this race 10 years ago, and I was thinking I might win it again," he said. "We as a team still have a lot to learn. I needed to tell them what the car needed there at the last pit stop. I went from doing everything I could to run down Dale Jr. down to just trying to keep a tire from going out there at the end."

Hillin's car is adorned with the words "Big Mac Attack" in honor of baseball's Mark McGwire, who is on a pace to break Roger Maris' single-season home run record. Hillin tried to put his second-place finish in the MBNA Platinum 200 in baseball terms.

"I think it would be a triple," he said. "We didn't win the race but we made a good run anyway."

Hillin also reflected on the ups and downs of his racing career, from early success at NASCAR's highest level to struggles to his latest success.

"Racing on my own was tough growing up," he said. "It hasn't gotten any easier. When I got let go at Jasper last year, I decided I would get into something I had a little more control in."

Hillin was in control at Dover, but some financial backing is needed to control the future.

"We definitely are looking for a full-time sponsor," he said. "Tell anyone interested to give us a call."

Source: NASCAR Online

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. , Bobby Hillin Jr.