Chevrolet Maintains Manufactures' Lead in NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series After Wild Race at Michigan International Speedway Driver Points Battle Tightens with Four Silverado Drivers in the Running Brooklyn, MI -- A wild final lap that saw...
Chevrolet Maintains Manufactures' Lead in NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series After Wild Race at Michigan International Speedway Driver Points Battle Tightens with Four Silverado Drivers in the Running
Brooklyn, MI -- A wild final lap that saw defending NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series (NCTS) champion Ron Hornaday in a battle for the lead, contact with another truck sent trucks scattering. The fracas resulted in Hornaday's No. 33 Camping World Silverado receiving extensive damage and relegated him to the 23rd finishing position.
Hornaday, who qualified ninth, but started in the rear of the field due to an engine change, worked his way through the field to take the lead on lap 40 of the 100-lap/200-mile race. He led again from laps 70 to 75, for a race total of eight laps.
As a result, the top-10 in the NCTS point standings tightened up with 10 races in the books. Hornaday sits third in the standings just 21 points from the top spot.
Matt Crafton, No. 88 Menards/Ideal Door Silverado ran in or near the top-10 most of the race but as trucks took evasive action to miss the final incident and dropped to 15th in the final order. Crafton now sits fourth in the standings.
Chad McCumbee, No. 8 Malcolmson Construction Silverado, finished ninth and climbed one spot in the standing to seventh.
Jack Sprague, No. 2 RVs.com Silverado qualified on the outside of the front row but received extensive damage on the first lap battling for the lead. His 30th place finish dropped him to eighth in the standings, but only 118 points out of the lead.
Erik Darnell won the race followed by Johnny Benson, Scott Speed, Todd Bodine and Brendan Gaughan.
The next NCTS event is Friday, June 20, 2008 at the famed Milwaukee Mile.
RON HORNADAY, NO. 33 CAMPING WORLD SILVERADO, STARTED NINTH, FINISHED 23RD AFTER LATE RACE ON-TRACK CONTACT:
TAKE US THROUGH WHAT HAPPENED THERE ON THE LAST LAP? "I don't need to. He (Kyle Busch) put tires on, I knew he was coming. He had the outside or the inside. He just drove in to me. He just drove in to me because he got mad because I took us four wide and passed him cleanly. Half way through the race, he showed me he was upset because he lifted the back of the truck up. If he is going to race that way, that is pretty chicken. He doesn't deserve to be a racer. He has a lot of talent, but that is just flat stupid. If Billy Ballew needs a championship that bad for owner's, he can drive that way, he has the right driver.
"I don't knock any other driver, but I will tell you what, that kid, has just about done wore me out. I don't know if I have to give up this championship to teach him a lesson, I hope I don't hurt him, because if Joe Gibbs lets him do this, I am ashamed for them. I tried to talk to him as a friend. He is just out there, I don't know what it is. I guess it is an ego trip and if he is going to wreck me every week, I guess we are going to have to do it back to him."
GO THROUGH WHAT HAPPENED WHEN YOU GOT BACK TO THE GARAGE: "I was just going to let him know he drives like a...that is about all I can say. The NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series is tough drivers, tough trucks, but not 180 mph, you turn somebody sideways. He knew he had tires, he knew he was faster, one more spot. We were leading the points, that will probably put them back in the points lead. If NASCAR doesn't penalize him and put him behind me, I don't know what to say. But our Camping World Silverado was fast."
MATT CRAFTON, NO. 88 MENARDS/IDEAL DOOR SILVERADO, STARTED 20TH, FINISHED 15TH:
NOT A BAD DAY. LOOKED LIKE YOU GUYS HAD A TOP-TEN TRUCK MOST OF THE RACE TIL RIGHT THERE IN THE END. HOW WAS YOUR DAY? "On the first run we were decent and we drove up to the top-ten after starting twentieth. Then we took four tires and got back there and lost our track position and then the next time we took two tires. I think we just got ourselves on the wrong pit sequence. It wasn't any good. It wasn't fun, I usually enjoy racing good at Michigan but I didn't have any fun today that's for sure."
LOOKED LIKE TIRES WERE A BIG FACTOR HERE TODAY. : "Tires were everything. I thought, and I asked the crew chief when we were going into three there during that last caution what we were going to do because for the first five laps you could run wide open but after that you were completely out of the gas and you were rolling the throttle. I knew that when those guys came in behind us, and I think there was only one guy behind us that didn't, that I knew it wasn't going to be a good deal and I knew we were going to be in trouble."
DONNY LIA, NO. 71 NATIONRIDES.COM SILVERADO, STARTED 26TH, FINISHED 12TH:
NOT A BAD DAY OVERALL FOR YOU GUYS. A DECENT FINISH. "No not bad. We struggled but actually ended up getting our Silverado pretty decent in the middle run there and felt pretty decent and then came down pit road there on one of the late cautions and everybody just got jammed up there and got into the back of the sixteen truck and pushed in the grill of our truck a bit. That hurt us real, real bad because we didn't have time to fix it. Then we went back out and I flat-spotted our right front tire and I didn't know it but we realized it after that last stop. If all that hadn't happened I feel like our Nationrides.com Silverado that could have finished towards the front and we would have had a pretty decent finish. Our issues put us back, but that whole last lap melee put us twelfth so it worked out well for us either way."
-credit: gm racing