19 August 2009
Hornaday aims to extend win streak at Bristol.
Ron Hornaday Jr will challenge history today [Wednesday] in the Camping World Truck Series' O'Reilly 200 at Bristol Motor Superspeedway, as he attempts to win his sixth straight race.
Six in a row is a feat exceeded in a NASCAR national series only by Richard Petty's ten-race streak in the 1967 Cup season, but Hornaday became the third driver to win five in a row, joining Bobby Allison and Petty - both in the 1971 Cup season - at Nashville on 1 August.
Hornaday established the consecutive win record for the truck series at four with his success at O'Reilly Raceway Park in Indianapolis, having guided his Kevin Harvick Inc entry to previous victories at Milwaukee, Memphis and Kentucky to tie the mark. He has won on five different types of tracks in his remarkable run.
“Right now, the KHI stuff with Hornaday Jr, they are in their own zip code,” said rival Mike Skinner, who himself has twice won three straight truck races.
Hornaday won back-to-back at Bristol in the truck series in 1997-98, but he hasn't led a lap since returning full-time to trucks with KHI in 2005. He has one top ten in four races and finished 24th last year at the high-banked 0.533-mile track with KHI.
Past performance may not count this season, however, as Hornaday and crew chief Rick Ren have been operating at a near unstoppable level with six wins in total, plus three further top five finishes.
“It doesn't matter how they roll off the trailer, they always find speed,” Colin Braun said of the veteran after finishing third at Nashville, “It's cool to watch, but it does get frustrating too.”
Hornaday, who already owns a series-high 45 wins, credits the team for his success this season.
“It says a lot for KHI,” he said, “It takes a whole team, and I'm fortunate to be driving for Kevin. Five years ago, he was looking for a driver, and I was looking for a job. It's worked out great.”
Hornaday has built a 216-point lead over second-place Matt Crafton, the largest lead 14 races into the season in the history of the series, with Skinner third overall, 248 points back, with eleven races remaining.
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