Hornaday's Kentucky victory matches record for multiple win seasons NEWS AND NOTES, PART II Hornaday's victory in last week's Built Ford Tough 225 was his second of the season. Hornaday won earlier at Mansfield Motorsports Speedway. The ...
Hornaday's Kentucky victory matches record for multiple win seasons
NEWS AND NOTES, PART II
Hornaday's victory in last week's Built Ford Tough 225 was his second of the season. Hornaday won earlier at Mansfield Motorsports Speedway.
The victory enabled Hornaday to match longtime rival Jack Sprague (No. 60 Con-way Freight Toyota) for most NASCAR Craftsman Truck seasons with multiple wins.
Both drivers have won multiple times in six different seasons. Sprague's last multiple victory season was 2001 when four wins contributed to his third NASCAR Craftsman Truck championship. Hornaday's most recent multiple win year was 1999 -- his final year driving for Dale Earnhardt Inc.
Three drivers -- Ted Musgrave (No. 9 Team ASE Toyota), Joe Ruttman and Dennis Setzer (No. 85 FlexFuel E85 Chevrolet) -- have multiple wins in four different seasons.
Kentucky Speedway's race represented the mid-point of the 2006 season. Twelve races remain, including the series' inaugural visit to Talladega Superspeedway on Oct. 7.
Todd Bodine (No. 30 Lumber Liquidators Toyota) completed his ninth-consecutive race as the standings leader. He holds a 112-point lead over Johnny Benson (No. 23 Bill Davis Racing Toyota). The latter driver, who finished fourth in Kentucky, bypassed previous runner-up David Reutimann (No. 17 Team Tundra Toyota).
Bodine's largest lead so far was 178 points (over Reutimann) following Race No. 10 at Michigan International Speedway. While Bodine's lead appears comfortable, history suggests that mid-year domination doesn't always last.
In fact, the mid-year leader has won the title just three times in 11 seasons. The last mid-year leader/champion was Greg Biffle in 2000. Hornaday (1996) and Sprague (1999) are the other mid-year leaders to win titles.
Seven different drivers have won races so far this season, with Bodine and Mark Martin (No. 6 Scotts Ford) the leaders with three victories each. Benson is the only first-time winner so far.
ETC. ... Former Boston Red Sox outfielder Mike Greenwell (No. 07 Green Light Racing Chevrolet) will make his second appearance of the season this week in Memphis. Greenwell finished 26th at Mansfield. ... Marcos Ambrose (No. 20 Team Australia/Aussie Vineyards Ford) became the first foreign-born driver to win a Budweiser Pole since Canadian Ron Fellows when he posted a fast lap of 176.922 mph at Kentucky Speedway. Fellows' last pole came in 1999 at Watkins Glen International. History was made on lap 13 when Ambrose and Mexico's Michel Jourdain Jr. (No. 50 Roush Racing Ford) became the first non-Americans to run one-two in a NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race. ... Terry Cook (No. 10 Ford Power Stroke Diesel by International Ford) matched the series record for consecutive starts at Kentucky with his 210th straight race. ... At Kentucky, Reutimann became the series' 32nd $1 million career winner. His total is $1,011,232. ... Kevin Grubb, who has replaced Kyle Krisiloff in Billy Ballew Motorsports' No. 15 Chevrolet, finished 21st in Kentucky. Grubb hadn't competed in the series since mid-1997.
ON THE RIGHT TRACK
Setzer pretty much perfect at Memphis Motorsports Park ... Setzer has competed in seven of eight series races held at the .75-mile track. He won in 2001 and hasn't finished worse than fifth, boasting a finishing average of 3.6. Setzer has completed all 1,402 laps of those seven races and led three consecutive races between 2001 and 2003.
Four Memphis winners in O'Reilly 200 field ... Setzer is joined in the lineup this week by Memphis winners Hornaday (1998), Sprague (2000) and Musgrave (2003). Musgrave is the lap leader among active drivers with 160 laps led six times up front. Musgrave was working three consecutive top-five finishes until being derailed by last year's 26th-place finish.
"Memphis Motorsports Park is a really good short track (with) plenty of room to race and the track itself has a few humps and bumps that make this short track pretty distinctive. You have to look for grip because the track itself is very seasoned." -- Dennis Setzer, whose 2001 victory was the first for his Morgan-Dollar Motorsports team.
"We can't be ashamed of ourselves. We showed a lot of speed out there. I've got to get better in traffic and we've got to get better at setting the truck up for those conditions." -- Marcos Ambrose, who finished 19th at Kentucky Speedway after leading 49 of the race's first 51 laps.
"It just feels so good to run so well." -- Brendan Gaughan (No. 77 Orleans Dodge), whose 100th series start resulted in a third-place finish to complete back-to-back top fives for the first time since 2003.
IN THE LOOP
Ron Hornaday Jr. didn't win last year's race -- he finished 21st -- but Loop Data demonstrates how dominant the two-time champion had been. Hornaday recorded four of the night's five fastest laps, recorded the third highest speed in traffic (111.683), led the field in Quality Passes (26) and posted the second highest Average Running Position (3.842).
If you're looking for additional favorites, consider that Rick Crawford ran the fastest lap speed late in a run (112.606) and runner-up David Reutimann boasts the highest Driver Rating of a returning driver (130.9).
As for Passing Zones, winner Brandon Whitt executed 85 percent of his passes -- 18 of 21 -- either on the track's front or back stretches.
In season Loop Data statistics, Reutimann holds the best Average Running Position (8.252) followed by Todd Bodine (8.42) and Crawford (9.289). Bodine continues with the best Driver Rating of 109.8; however, third-place Reutimann (106.4) rates higher than Benson (103.).
FROM THE ARCHIVES
All eight NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series races at Memphis Motorsports Park have been won from a start of fifth or higher. Two drivers have won from the Budweiser Pole -- Greg Biffle in 1999 and Brandon Whitt in 2005. Three would appear to be the magic number as the winner has come from an inside second-row starting position on four occasions.
What: O'Reilly 200 (Race 14 of 25).
Where: Memphis Motorsports Park, Millington, Tenn.
When: 9:15 p.m. ET, July 15.
Track layout: .75-mile paved oval.
Race length: 200 laps /150 miles.
Posted awards: $547,652
TV: SPEED Channel, 9 p.m. (ET).
Radio: MRN, XM Satellite.
2005 winner: Brandon Whitt
2005 polesitter: Brandon Whitt
Top 10 drivers: 1.Todd Bodine 2,043. 2. Johnny Benson 1,931. 3. David Reutimann 1,898. 4. Ted Musgrave 1,807. 5. Rick Crawford 1,806. 6. Ron Hornaday Jr. 1,745. 7. David Starr 1,742. 8. Terry Cook 1,717. 9. Jack Sprague 1,708. 10. Dennis Setzer 1,696.
Pre-race schedule (all times local): Friday--Practice 5 p.m. -- 6 p.m. Rookie Practice 6 p.m. -- 6:30 p.m. Final Practice 7:45 p.m. -- 8:45 p.m. Saturday - Qualifying 5 p.m. Trucks impounded after qualifying.