* Dennis Setzer Explains Success At ORP * Skinner Made NASCAR History In 1995-96 * Odds Good Experience Will Prevail In Indy Position, Handling Keys At ORP DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 23, 2007) -- Although Dennis Setzer (No. 75 ...
* Dennis Setzer Explains Success At ORP
* Skinner Made NASCAR History In 1995-96
* Odds Good Experience Will Prevail In Indy
Position, Handling Keys At ORP
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 23, 2007) -- Although Dennis Setzer (No. 75 Spears Manufacturing Chevrolet) is only No. 4 in NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series short track victories, the Newton, N.C., veteran is acknowledged by his peers as one of the best drivers on small ovals like .686-mile O'Reilly Raceway Park at Indianapolis.
Setzer won Friday's Power Stroke Diesel 200 in 2003 and in 10 starts at ORP boasts an average finish of 7.6.
Among entered drivers in this week's race, only Travis Kvapil (No. 6 K&N Engineering Ford) has a better average -- 3.5 in four appearances.
According to Setzer, two things -- a good qualifying effort and a superlatively handling truck -- are keys to a solid finish at ORP.
"Where you qualify makes a difference because track position is so important," said Setzer, runnerup to Rick Crawford (No. 14 Power Stroke Diesel by International Ford) in last year's race.
No ORP winner has started outside the top five. Setzer won from the Bud Pole -- the fifth driver to do so in the track's first 12 races.
"You have to be hooked up through and off both ends of the track," he said. "If you don't have a truck that will do what you need in the center of the corner, you can't set up to pass as you exit -- which is where you have to make your moves.
"My favorite place to pass at ORP is through the center and off (Turn) four."
Skinner Joined Legendary Figures With 1995-96 ORP Victories
No NASCAR Craftsman Truck competitor has dominated a single track like Mike Skinner.
The inaugural series champion won the Power Stroke Diesel 200 back-to-back in 1995-96 and in the process led all 350 laps around the .686-mile oval.
Skinner became only the fourth driver in NASCAR national series history to lead every lap in consecutive races at the same track -- a feat that hadn't been achieved since 1969.
NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series champions Junior Johnson and Ned Jarrett were the first to do the "double" in 1963 and 1964, respectively.
Hard-charger Bobby Isaac had been the most recent at Hickory (N.C.) Motor Speedway in 1969.
Ironically, O'Reilly Raceway Park didn't see a lead change until the 201st lap of the 1997 race. Race-long leader Jimmy Hensley cut a tire under caution, giving Ron Hornaday Jr. the victory in a green-white-checker finish.
Veterans, Champions Score Big At O'Reilly Raceway Park
The 2007 season has been top-heavy when it comes to veteran drivers and past champions visiting Victory Lane.
Odds are excellent that will continue this week at O'Reilly Raceway Park.
There are six former winners entered in Friday's Power Stroke Diesel 200. Three of them -- Jack Sprague (No. 60 Con-way Freight) Toyota, Ron Hornaday Jr. (No. 33 Camping World Chevrolet) and Mike Skinner (No. 5 Toyota Tundra Toyota) have won a combined six titles.
Both Sprague and Skinner are double winners at ORP. Hornaday has won once as has defending winner Rick Crawford, 2005 winner Dennis Setzer and 2003 winner Terry Cook (No. 59 Harris Trucking Toyota).
The Power Stroke Diesel 200 is the year's fourth of six short tracks. Skinner already has one short track victory at Martinsville Speedway. Setzer won at Mansfield Motorsports Park.
Travis Kvapil -- who has finished second, third, fourth and fifth at ORP -- captured the most recent short track race at Memphis Motorsports Park.
Having previous success at ORP is important, according to Hornaday's crew chief Rick Ren.
"It's almost all about the driver at this track," he said. "It's also about setting up the truck so your driver can be aggressive.
"The drivers that are aggressive are able to make their way to the front at Indianapolis but you have to have something underneath them to get them there."
Hornaday is the series' all-time short track winner with 16 victories -- the most recent at Mansfield in 2006. Skinner ranks No. 2 with 15 followed by Sprague's 13.