Entering the seventh event of the 2012 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) season, Ron Hornaday headed to Texas Motor Speedway (TMS) looking to rebound from his first DNF of the season a week ago at Dover. As the defending race winner, Hornaday had high hopes for his No. 9 Joe Denette Motorsports team. However, the three-time winner at TMS would settle for a 12th-place finish in the 16th Annual WinStar World Casino 400.
As rain rolled into Texas on Thursday afternoon, NASCAR was forced to cancel qualifying for Friday night’s 167-lap event and the field was set by owner points. However, the 35-truck field did get a two-hour practice session on Thursday evening. The No. 9 Joe Denette Motorsports crew worked on fine tuning the SWM International Chevrolet Silverado, posting the 19th-fastest time overall.
Rolling off the starting grid ninth, Hornaday spent the opening thirty laps in the top-10 fighting a loose-handling Chevrolet Silverado, which hindered his ability to make gains up the leader board and would ultimately prove to challenge the team for the duration of the race.
During a caution at lap 33 for fluid on the track, Hornaday made his way to pit road for a major chassis adjustment, four tires including an air pressure adjustment and fuel. With fuel strategy in the back of their minds, Hornaday was directed back down pit road to top off with fuel before restarting19th at lap 37.
The SWM team capitalized on every opportunity presented to work on the handling of Hornaday’s Chevrolet Silverado with no success. Despite the ill-handling condition, Hornaday continued to battle his way through the field breaking his way into the top-12 by lap 140. There was no looking back from that moment on. Hornaday would finish 12th behind race winner, Johnny Sauter.
This was Hornaday’s fourth top-12 finish of the season.
Ron Hornaday On His Race: “This SWM International Chevrolet Silverado was just really loose tonight; it took everything I had not to wreck it. Even though we were off, my guys didn’t give up; they just kept working on adjustments to make it better. We weren’t bad in the beginning but we just got worse later in a run. I think we learned a lot that we can bring back here in the fall and although a 12th-place finish is not what we are aiming for, it was a solid finish for what we had and a gain from last weekend. We lost a couple points in the championship battle but we are not far off. I’m looking forward to redemption at Kentucky.”