Hornaday 'doubles up'; to drive for Pardus By Shawn A. Akers LAS VEGAS (March 2, 1999) NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series champion Ron Hornaday will replace Dan Pardus in the No. 50 MidWest Transit Chevrolet this weekend in an attempt to qualify for...
Hornaday 'doubles up'; to drive for Pardus By Shawn A. Akers
LAS VEGAS (March 2, 1999) NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series champion Ron Hornaday will replace Dan Pardus in the No. 50 MidWest Transit Chevrolet this weekend in an attempt to qualify for Sunday's Las Vegas 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, a team official said Tuesday.
Team Manager Irv McDougall said the deal is just for one race, and Pardus, a Raybestos Rookie of the Year candidate, is expected to be back in the car for the Cracker Barrel Old Country Store 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway the following weekend. The No. 50 team has failed to qualify for each of the first two NASCAR Winston Cup Series events this season, the Daytona 500 and the Dura-Lube/Big Kmart 400 at North Carolina Speedway in Rockingham.
Hornaday will be busy this weekend as NAPA Auto Parts will sponsor him in the NASCAR Winston West Series Orleans 150 on Friday. He'll be driving a Pontiac that was formerly run by NASCAR Winston West Series regular Sean Monroe.
"Hal Hicks, the team owner, made this decision within the last few days," McDougall said of the decision to call on Hornaday, who finished second to Sprague in the 1998 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series finale at Las Vegas.. "He wants us to get in the race, and Danny has never even done any testing at Las Vegas, let alone run there. He (Hicks) feels that Dan would go nowhere out there without at least testing.
"The owners just felt that they needed an experienced driver for that race track. The support is still there from the owners for Dan Pardus, and we plan to have Danny drive for the rest of the year. The fact is, though, the owners want to qualify for this race and we think Ron is going to be able to do that for us."
Pardus was in Atlanta on Tuesday testing a new car in preparation for the Cracker Barrel 500 on March 14 at the high speed 1.54-mile speedway..
A two-time NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series champion, Hornaday has raced three times competitively at Las Vegas. He finished second in last year's season finale to Sprague, a runner-up finish that gave him the championship by a mere three points over Sprague, the 1997 titlist.
Hornaday participated in one NASCAR Winston Cup Series event last season, finishing a respectable 14th in the Save Mart/Kragen 350 at Sears Point Raceway in Sonoma, Calif., in a car backed by his usual sponsor, NAPA Auto Parts.
"We've got an experienced man in Ron trying to get us in the race," McDougall said. "There's no reason why he shouldn't qualify well on Friday and give us a good showing on Sunday. Ron Hornaday really knows how to drive a race car, and he knows that race track well."
Hornaday has made one stock car start already this season, in the NASCAR Busch Series Grand National Division season-opening NAPA Auto Parts 300 at Daytona International Speedway. He drove a Dale Earnhardt Inc. Chevrolet in that race and was running competitively before he became involved in a multi-car accident.
Source: NASCAR Online