Homestead: Bobby Hamilton preview

Hamilton Addresses Championship Hopes Championship Hopes: "Homestead, again, is another good racetrack for us, and we tested really well there. You know, you just take things hour by hour now. I still have to out-run the No. 46 truck at ...

Hamilton Addresses Championship Hopes

Championship Hopes: "Homestead, again, is another good racetrack for us, and we tested really well there. You know, you just take things hour by hour now. I still have to out-run the No. 46 truck at Homestead. That is the easiest scenario to clinch this thing. We don't think by any means that we have the championship in the bag going into Homestead. We have plans to run our same deal there, to lead at least one lap and finish as good as we can in the race. I had no idea that I would finish second at Darlington. I thought before going there the best scenario would be that if Dennis finished 15th, that I would be happy with 14th. During the race I realized how good my truck was and told myself to try to get as many positions as I could. I caught it at the right time and I put myself up there. Once I got up there I told myself to try to stay there. It was easier to do it that way. The championship can kill you if you dwell on it all the time. Yes it is on my mind now more often than I want it to be, but I am sticking to my same deal, race for the win and the championship will fall into place."

Manufacturer's Championship: "I radioed my spotter during the race at Darlington and told him, -- You make sure you tell both Bobby Jr. and Kasey (Kahne) that we need to win this manufacturers championship, and don't do anything crazy on the final restart.' And after I said that I looked behind me and it was Ted (Musgrave) sitting fourth at that time. So, I relaxed and told myself there is almost no way for us to lose the manufacturer's championship unless we all four wreck. And if we do that, the manufacturer's championship isn't going to make any difference because Dodge is going to fire us all.' I hate that we had the mishap at the end with Bobby Jr., but we got Dodge the manufacturer's championship buttoned up before Homestead and that was the goal."

Notes:

* Despite the damage at the end of the Darlington 200 race to Slim Shady, the team rallied back to Nashville, got the truck repaired so it will race in Homestead.

* Hamilton has to finish 14th or better, regardless of what Dennis Setzer does, and he will clinch the 2004 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Championship title.

* Last year the Tennessee native started from the pole position, led the most laps and ended up winning the race in Homestead.

* Earlier this year Hamilton tested with the entire Dodge fleet at Homestead and he was the fastest truck.

Other Teams Misfortune: "We don't talk about other teams at all, even when they have misfortune. I will not tolerate my team celebrating at someone else's bad luck. We wouldn't want them to do that to us. I truly hate that Dennis Setzer spun in Darlington. It was not his fault in the least and he didn't deserve something to take his good run away from him. He is a fierce competitor and is a gentleman on the race track. We do not have any trouble with each other at all, personally or professionally. The media would like us to have more controversy with each other, but I'm genuine in saying he is a good race car driver and if he wins the championship in Homestead, then he will be a tremendous champion for the NCTS."

-bhr-

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Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Bobby Hamilton , Dennis Setzer