Kentucky Robert Huffman preview

SPARTA, Ky. (July 9, 2003) ­ Current NASCAR Goody's Dash Series points leader Robert Huffman returns to Kentucky Speedway this weekend, the site of Toyota's first NASCAR victory in the Goody's Dash Series in 2001. The win in the V6-powered No. 37...

SPARTA, Ky. (July 9, 2003) ­ Current NASCAR Goody's Dash Series points leader Robert Huffman returns to Kentucky Speedway this weekend, the site of Toyota's first NASCAR victory in the Goody's Dash Series in 2001. The win in the V6-powered No. 37 White House Apple Juice Toyota Celica was the first by an overhead-cam, multi-valve engine in NASCAR history. The weekend's NASCAR Goody's Dash "Kentucky 150" is on Friday, June 11 at 8 p.m. EDT.

In addition to Huffman, defending race winner and 2002 NASCAR Goody's Dash Series Champion Jake Hobgood ­ who is currently second in the championship points standings ­ and Brandon Ward (fourth overall) will be campaigning Toyota Celicas in the 100-lap race. Huffman has parlayed two victories (Daytona and Charlotte) and five top-six finishes this season into a 64-point lead over Hobgood after five races.

"It means a lot coming back to Kentucky after helping Toyota get its first win in NASCAR two years ago," said Huffman, a four-time NASCAR Goody's Dash Series champion (1990, 1998-2000) from Claremont, N.C. "I really like racing on tracks like Kentucky Speedway. We won the Bud Pole last year but ended up finishing second to Jake (Hobgood). You have to have a really fast car, but it has to also handle well in the corners."

Defending NASCAR Goody's Dash Series champion and recent South Boston race winner Jake Hobgood looks to also defend his 2002 race win at Kentucky, where he held off Huffman for the victory. Hobgood's win at South Boston on June 14 was his first in the new No. 64 Germain Toyota Celica. He recently finished second at Greenville-Pickens (S.C.) Speedway, his third top-five finish this year, to move into second place overall.

"We had a great battle for the win last year against Rob (Huffman)," said Hobgood, a native of Winnsboro, S.C. "The Germain Celica has been great since our first race at Savannah. I think the Toyota's power will really help us again this weekend."

Brandon Ward earned his first career Bud Pole at South Boston in the No. 11 Rayco Safety/Ram Fabrication Toyota Celica. The Winston-Salem, N.C., native recently finished third at Greenville-Pickens, which was his third top-five finish this season including Daytona (fifth) and South Boston (third). Ward's consistent performance moved him into fourth place overall, 114 points behind Huffman.

Jeff Tillman will be making his second start this season in the No. 77 Sherwin Williams Toyota Celica with Weaver Racing. He finished 32nd at Lowe's Motor Speedway in Charlotte after early mechanical problems.

Qualifying for the 100-lap, Goody's Dash "Kentucky 150" at Kentucky Speedway will be at 1 p.m. EDT on Friday, July 11, and the race will be run at approximately 8 p.m. EST.

Toyota made its debut in the NASCAR Goody's Dash series at Daytona in 2000. The 28-year-old series is part of the NASCAR ladder system, designed to help promote and develop driver's skills at tracks as varied as Daytona, Charlotte and Bristol. Originally called "Baby Grands," Goody's Dash cars resemble a scaled-down version of a Winston Cup car, and each is equipped with a V6 powerplant. Series alumni include Michael Waltrip, Davey Allison, Robert Pressley, Hut Stricklin, Andy Houston and Shawna Robinson.

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Series NASCAR
Drivers Michael Waltrip , Shawna Robinson , Andy Houston , Hut Stricklin , Robert Pressley , Jeff Tillman , Robert Huffman , Davey Allison
Teams Williams