Near-record performance as Deborah Renshaw bounces back at Dover NEWS & NOTES Renshaw in bounce-back at Dover ... Even champions occasionally feel the sting of failing to qualify for a race but that fact doesn't completely erase ...
Near-record performance as Deborah Renshaw bounces back at Dover
NEWS & NOTES
Renshaw in bounce-back at Dover ... Even champions occasionally feel the sting of failing to qualify for a race but that fact doesn't completely erase the disappointment. When Deborah Renshaw (No. 8 EasyCare Vehicle Service Dodge) missed last month's race at Lowe's Motor Speedway, the 27-year-old competitor figured she would make a far different statement at Dover International Speedway -- and that's exactly what she did. Renshaw went from DNQ to a 12th-place finish, one position shy of Tammy Jo Kirk's record for a female driver in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. The Bowling Green, Ky., resident also logged her second lead lap finish of 2005.
"After the unfortunate circumstance of missing the race at Lowe's two weeks ago, this is an incredible confidence boost for me," said Renshaw, who was competing in her 21st series race. Her best previous finish was 15th at Martinsville Speedway in April. "I still have a tremendous amount to learn in this series and today was probably the best learning experience of my career. I ran side-by-side with the best drivers in this series and held my own all day. It was awesome to have them come up to me after the race and congratulate me on a strong run."
Kite can make history in Texas ... Raybestos Rookie of the Year contender Jimmy Kite (No. 06 MRD Chevrolet) bids to become the first driver to compete in NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series and Indy Racing League events on the same weekend. Kite finished 32nd in May's Indianapolis 500. The Stockbridge, Ga. competitor ranks sixth in current Raybestos points standings. ETC. ... Kelly Sutton (No. 02 Team Copaxone Chevrolet) has become the all-time money winner by a female driver on the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. She has won $259,452, eclipsing Kirk's old record of $257,545. Sutton hopes to start her 32nd race in Texas to match Kirk's mark of most starts on the series by a female driver. ... Matt Crafton (No. 88 Menards Chevrolet), seventh in NASCAR Craftsman Truck points, goes for his 50th career top-10 finish this week. ... James Harris' No. 59 Dodge driven by Robert Pressley will carry sponsorship of Con-Way Transportation this week. South Padre Island, a Texas tourism destination, joins Orleans Racing's Gaughan and Steve Park (No. 62 Orleans Dodge) for both Texas events. ... Clay Rogers, who made his series debut with a 14th-place finish at Lowe's Motor Speedway, this week subs for Regan Smith in the No. 65 Glynn Motorsports Dodge. Smith will be competing in the NASCAR Busch Series Federated Auto Parts 300 at Nashville Superspeedway. ... Last year's Chex 400K had the fewest laps of caution -- 12 -- of any series race at Texas. The three caution periods matched the low recorded in the 2001 race. ... The Chex 400K is the third of nine races on 1.5-mile tracks this season. Hornaday (Atlanta) and Kyle Busch (Lowe's) won the first two. ... Busch, winner at Dover International Speedway in the Billy Ballew-owned No. 15 Chevrolet, is the first to capture back-to-back races since Kasey Kahne won at Darlington Raceway and Homestead-Miami Speedway to conclude the 2004 season. Johnny Sauter will drive for Ballew at Texas. ... Kevin Harvick Racing crew chief Wally Rogers will be back on the pit box this week. His wife, Renee, gave birth to twins Cali Jean and Emma Renee on June 3.
ON THE RIGHT TRACK
Four previous Texas winners in the field ... Defending Chex 400K winner Dennis Setzer (No. 46 Chevrolet Silverado Chevrolet) looks for his third win at Texas. Other winners of the event entered are Gaughan (2002-03) and Jack Sprague (No. 16 Chevy Trucks Chevrolet, 2001). Last year's fall winner Todd Bodine also will compete.
Crawford, Musgrave led but haven't won ... Two of three drivers who have led the most races -- six -- at Texas Motor Speedway have yet to win at the track. Rick Crawford (No. 14 Circle Bar Truck Corral Ford) and Ted Musgrave (No. 1 Mopar Dodge) each have runnerup finishes, Crawford in 2001 (fall) and Musgrave in last year's Chex 400K.
"My first year there (2001) I finished second with TKO Motorsports. So I'm not quite undefeated but I'm on a four-in-a-row streak with one second and four firsts." -- Brendan Gaughan, explaining that he isn't perfect in NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series competition at Texas Motor Speedway.
"To finish seventh in a backup truck that we hadn't put any laps on that weekend was a testament to this team. It turned out to be a great day for us in the points and I think it showed that this is a championship-caliber team." -- Ricky Craven, No. 99 Superchips Ford, after his finish in Dover International Speedway's MBNA RacePoints 200 brought the Roush Racing driver to within 20 points of Musgrave's championship lead.
"One race doesn't change your season, but it gives you momentum." -- David Reutimann, No. 15 NTN Bearings Toyota, after finishing fifth at Dover. 2004 Raybestos Rookie of the Year Reutimann, third in last year's Chex 400K, hadn't finished better than 12th entering the season's eighth event.
10 YEARS TOUGH
One-mile tracks -- The Milwaukee Mile and Phoenix International Raceway -- were the largest tracks in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series' inaugural campaign. The tracks hosted three of the 1995 schedule's 20 races and Mike Skinner won them all. Qualifying speeds this week at Texas Motor Speedway are expected to top 180 m.p.h.. Ron Hornaday Jr. won the Bud Pole for Phoenix's series opener at 123.665.
FROM THE ARCHIVES
Until Todd Bodine won last fall's Silverado 350K from the No. 22 starting position, no winner at Texas Motor Speedway had started deeper in the field than 12th. In fact, nine of the track's winners have started fifth or better -- three from the Bud Pole. The last pole starter to win, however, was Bryan Reffner in October 2000. Craftsman's win from the pole bonus increases to $8,000 this week.
Next Event: Chex 400K (Race 9 of 25).
Where: Texas Motor Speedway.
When: 9:15 p.m. ET, Friday, June 10.
Track layout: 1.5-Mile Paved Speedway.
Race length: 400 kilometers/250.5 Miles/167 Laps.
Posted awards: $642,450.
TV: SPEED Channel, 9:15 p.m. ET.
Radio: MRN, XM Satellite.
2004 winner: Dennis Setzer.
2004 polesitter: Ted Musgrave.
Pre-race schedule (all times local): Thursday -- Practice 11:15 a.m. -- 12:15 p.m. and 12:45 p.m. -- 1:45 p.m. Qualifying 6:00 p.m. Trucks impounded after qualifying.
Top 10 drivers: 1. Ted Musgrave 1,200. 2. Ricky Craven 1,180. 3. Bobby Hamilton 1,147. 4. Ron Hornaday Jr. 1,100. 5. Jimmy Spencer 1,084. 6. Dennis Setzer 1,064. 7. Matt Crafton 1,018. 8. Terry Cook 1,007. 9. David Starr 977. 10. Johnny Benson 958.