Hornaday Masters The Monster Mile

Ron Hornaday was clearly in a class by himself at Dover International Speedway as he led 91 of 200 laps and beat Stacy Compton to the checkers by more than seven seconds to score his 31st career victory. Prior to the race, however, Hornaday didn’t think much of his chances of making it to Victory Lane. Trouble during Friday’s practice sessions forced crew chief Rick Ren to order a host of changes including four new shocks for the Kevin Harvick, Inc. Chevrolet. Despite a 15th place qualifying effort, Hornaday remained skeptical. “I was really, really mad at Rick this morning after qualifying,” Harvick admitted. “That thing got so loose going down in to (turn) one, I scared myself. After qualifying, he said, ‘Don't worry, I will make some changes.’”

To Hornaday’s surprise those changes worked liked a charm. “Rick Ren is the best,” he said. “It took me 20 laps to figure out how to drive this thing but once I did, we went forward. The changes he made were unbelievable. It tightened up just enough.”

Compton’s runner-up finish was season best for the veteran who is sharing the No. 09 Ford with rookie driver Joey Clanton. “I tell you what, I’m so proud of these guys,” said Compton. “They work so hard all year long. I’m a part-timer and they gave me a truck that can go out and win races and it’s a lot of fun. It’s a shame we can’t win them all.”

Travis Kvapil brought his Roush Fenway Racing Ford home in third to equal his best effort of the season and moved up one points position to sixth overall. “This is what we planned on doing all along but for two or three races we stumbled,” Kvapil noted. “We’ve figured some stuff out and we’re building on it. Hopefully we can keep it in the top 10 for the rest of the year.”
Johnny Benson finished fourth while Mike Bliss rounded out the top five in his first start with Bobby Hamilton Racing.

Mike Skinner nailed his sixth consecutive pole award to earn the right to lead the field to green in the series’ 300th event while Clint Bowyer started on the outside of the front row. The Monster Mile feasted early when Skinner and Bowyer bumped and triggered a crash that involved eight trucks before one lap was complete. Skinner continued on to lead the first 23 laps and eventually finished seventh but Bowyer was done before the race even started and joined Bill Lester and Brendan Gaughan in the garage early.

There was no change among the top five in the driver point standings as Skinner held onto the lead for the sixth consecutive race and enjoys a 77 point cushion over Hornaday heading into next weekend’s event at Texas Motor Speedway.