BUSCH: St. Louis: Ron Hornaday preview

* Ron Hornaday and the No. 2 ACDelco Chevrolet head into Gateway International Raceway (Gateway) closer to first place in points, yet further away as well. Confused? Hornaday's 15th place finish at Richmond last week combined with Todd ...

* Ron Hornaday and the No. 2 ACDelco Chevrolet head into Gateway International Raceway (Gateway) closer to first place in points, yet further away as well. Confused? Hornaday's 15th place finish at Richmond last week combined with Todd Bodine's bad luck, has moved Hornaday from 99 points behind to just 57 points out of first. However, Hornaday's own bad luck dropped him from second in points to fourth.

* Gateway has been a very good track for the No. 2 ACDelco Chevrolet in the past. In fact, the "blue deuce" has won four out of the last five races at the 1.25-mile egg shaped oval. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. won back-to-back races in 1998 and 1999, while Kevin Harvick equaled the feat in 2000-2001. It has also been a great track for Hornaday. He finished sixth at the track in 2000 and led the most laps last year en route to a second place finish.

* The ACDelco transporter will unload chassis No. 32 at Gateway. It is a brand new 1.5-inch drop snout car that the team tested at Richmond three weeks ago and again at Caraway (N.C.) Speedway last week. Hornaday asked RCR to build the car for tracks like Gateway and Nazareth Speedway.

* The Charter Pipeline 250 will be Hornaday's 93rd career NASCAR Busch Series start. He will make his 100th start at Daytona International Speedway on July 4th.

No. 2 ACDelco Chevrolet driver Ron Hornaday on Gateway International Raceway

What's the key to running well at Gateway International Raceway?

"It's really close to what you need at Richmond. You have to get the car to turn in the middle of the corner and off. You carry a lot of speed into the corners here because of the long straights. Once you get into the corner, the car has to be able to roll through the center and then turn off the corner. The bottom is the best place to be when you're out front. You can race side-by-side, but there isn't a lot of banking so you put a lot of trust in the car you're racing.

"Track position is a key here.  When you are out front, it is really easy to
drive the track.  But if you get stuck back in traffic, it can be very hard
to get by.  Your car has to be perfect to race from the back at Gateway."

You lost two positions in the points standings after the Richmond race, but you gained ground on first place. How is the championship chase going?

"We had a great chance to really pick up a lot of points at Richmond, but we got wrecked with four laps to go. That cost us about 30 points and two spots. I'm not real happy about what happened, but we were very lucky that the car was able to start up and finish the race under caution. We punctured the radiator, so my water temps were 260 (degrees). But we finished and gained some ground, but it was one of the "what could have been" races.

"This team has really come together. We have had good qualifying runs lately and the car has run up-front. We just need to try and stay out of trouble at the end. We got caught up in late crashes at Bristol, Texas and now Richmond. You can't win championships with wrecked cars. I really think that this is a championship team. That's what Richard (Childress) hired me to do and that's where my focus is. We are going to win a bunch of races and I can't think of a better time to start than this week at Gateway."

Ron Hornaday is currently fourth in the NASCAR Busch Series Point Standings. The No.2 ACDelco Chevrolet is 57 points out of first place.

-rcr-

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About this article
Series NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Todd Bodine , Kevin Harvick , Ron Hornaday Jr.