Atlanta: Ron Hornaday preview

Fast Times at Atlanta Motor Speedway Huntersville, NC (March 15, 2005) -- Ron Hornaday is not new to racing. In fact, the 46 year old Palmdale Calif., native has been around racing almost his entire life. After listening to him talk about his ...

Fast Times at Atlanta Motor Speedway

Huntersville, NC (March 15, 2005) -- Ron Hornaday is not new to racing. In fact, the 46 year old Palmdale Calif., native has been around racing almost his entire life. After listening to him talk about his GM Goodwrench team's test at Atlanta (Ga.) Motor Speedway last week this may be difficult to believe. The two-time NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series (NCTS) champion was so excited, he sounded like it was his first time on a race track.

"Man that was fun," Hornaday exclaimed about his laps at the 1.54 mile oval. "I have heard that Atlanta was wide open, but I wasn't sure that I believed it. I believe it now! The first lap I was taken back, but then I got comfortable and just settled in for the ride. We were un-Godly fast. This is going to be one heck of a race!"

The GM Goodwrench team is hoping to build on the momentum that they started in Fontana, Calif., on February 25th 2005. A seventh place finish in the American Racing Wheels 200 propelled the No. 6 Kevin Harvick, Inc. (KHI) team from 26th place in the point's race to 12th position, but that is not good enough for them. After such a quality test in Atlanta the guys are looking to find victory lane and crack the top-ten in their hunt for the NCTS championship.

"We really need a strong finish," said Hornaday. "We can't continue to spot these other guys points if we want to be players at the end of the season. This is a great chance for us to gain some positions and put on an awesome show for the fans. If they thought last year's race good, they are in for a real treat this time around."

Points of interest...

* First Time... Even though Hornaday has raced at Atlanta Motor Speedway in NASCAR Busch and NEXTEL Cup Series rides, this will be the first time that he has raced there in the NCTS.

* Second Time... This is the second time Hornaday has been a full time member of the NCTS. After finishing the 1999 season he moved on to race in the Cup series and Busch Series, but has now returned to what he enjoys best-racing trucks. The move has appeared to re-energize Hornaday and he seems to be more relaxed in the series where he has won more races than anyone else.

* Third Time... Is the charm. In the season's first two races the GM Goodwrench team felt that they had a truck capable of winning the race. Two mishaps, a wreck and a poor pit stop, have cost the team a chance at the checkered flag. This week in Atlanta the team looks to avoid any mistakes on their way to victory lane.

* In the Hauler... The team will be bringing chassis No. 004 to Atlanta Motor Speedway. This is the same chassis that finished 7th at California Speedway earlier this year.

* TV and Radio... Start time for Friday night's World Financial Group 200 is 9:15 p.m. EST. TV coverage will begin at 9:00 p.m. on SPEED Channel, with radio broadcast being carried by PRN starting at 9:00 PM as well. Remember that race dates and times are subject to change, so check your local listings.

No. 6 GM Goodwrench Driver Ron Hornaday on Atlanta Motor Speedway...

Is Atlanta really as fast as they say it is?

"It really is fast. I am a believer now. It is so much fun when we get to drive wide open like that. I can't wait to race Friday night."

Can you win in Atlanta?

"I don't see why not. As long as we can avoid trouble we should be in contention at the end of the race. We have the right guys making decisions and our crew is just awesome. I think that this is a good week for us to break through and get the No. 6 KHI Chevrolet Silverado to victory lane."

No. 6 GM Goodwrench Crew Chief Wally Rogers on Atlanta Motor Speedway...

Are you as excited about testing as Ron was?

"Anytime that the driver is excited you can't help but be upbeat. I try not to get myself worked up because in testing we had a lot of room on the racetrack. We have been close in both races so far this year; we just have to avoid any mistakes and we can make a nice run."

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About this article
Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Kevin Harvick , Ron Hornaday Jr.