Huffman gets his second Kentucky win

Sparta, Kentucky - Robert Huffman held off a charging Justin Hobgood for his second win on the 1.5-mile oval at Kentucky Speedway. Huffman, of Claremont, NC, won the Goody's Dash Series' first visit to Kentucky in 2001, scoring Toyota's first win...

Sparta, Kentucky - Robert Huffman held off a charging Justin Hobgood for his second win on the 1.5-mile oval at Kentucky Speedway. Huffman, of Claremont, NC, won the Goody's Dash Series' first visit to Kentucky in 2001, scoring Toyota's first win in any NASCAR category with the closest finish at the speedway to date. Tonight's win wasn't as close, but Hobgood was giving it all he had to get around Huffman's Celica in the race's final laps.

Hobgood was on the pole for the Kentucky 150, and streaked off to a huge lead in the opening laps of the race. Third-starting Huffman and outside front row starter Chuck Gafrarar gave chase, but Hobgood's Pontiac was obviously the fastest car on the track.

Also impressive in the early laps of the race was Jason York's Pontiac. York started 8th, was up to 4th place when the race's first caution was called for David Heitzhaus' turn 2 spin on lap 17, and was on Hobgood's back bumper for the second restart (after a caution to clean up after Scott Krehling's contact with the back straight wall on lap 30.) York's charge failed along with his car's engine on lap 60.

Hobgood made the race interesting when he came in for an unscheduled pit stop under caution on lap 50. He was in 15th place when the Dash cars got the green again on lap 54 (of 100.) Hobgood used the next long stretch of green flag laps to work his way up to the front. By lap 59, he was up to 7th place; on lap 64, he passed Mickey York for 5th. Seven laps later, he took 4th place from Danny Bagwell. On lap 74, Hobgood passed both Ned Combs (for 3rd) and Eric Wilson (for 2nd) and set out after Huffman.

By this time, Huffman had gotten a lead of over five seconds on Wilson, and it looked like it would be a solid piece of work for Hobgood to make up the gap - especially since Huffman was going nearly as fast at that time in the race.

The race at the front got a dose of excitement, however, when the engine in Jay Godley's Sunfire exploded in a fireball as he approached turn 1, and the caution came out for the fourth (and final) time on lap 82. After a cleanup, the green waved for the final time with eleven laps to go.

Huffman and Hobgood took off from the rest of the pack, and had a battle for the lead that had the crowd on its feet. Huffman got a little edge in the first few laps of the run, but with five to go, Hobgood started applying pressure. Huffman had all he needed, though, and Hobgood was never able to get alongside to make a solid attempt at a pass.

Bagwell finished third, and Wilson got around Mickey York on the final lap for fourth. Also finishing on the lead lap were Scott Weaver, Combs, Ricky Bryant, and Bill Clevenger.

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Series NASCAR
Drivers Jay Godley , Robert Huffman , Justin Hobgood , Jason York