CLERMONT, Indiana — One year ago Ron Hornaday stood in victory lane at O'Reilly Raceway Park (ORP) making history as the No. 33 team recorded its fourth consecutive win. Friday night Hornaday snapped a 22-race winless streak, at the 0.686-mile short-track, leading 129 of the 200 laps in route to his first victory of the season and his fourth at ORP, more than any other Truck Series driver.
"I'm worn out," said Hornaday after the race. "It was a hot day. I have to thank Georgia Boot for coming on board and sticking with us, all of our sponsors have been so supportive. It takes a lot of people to make this happen and I can't thank them enough. Maybe now with this win, it will keep everybody from talking about my streak. Ernie Cope (crew chief) made all the right calls tonight, whatever he did on that last stop made all the difference. I have to thank the No. 33 team, they have been working their guts out and they deserved a win. I'm really excited to be back in victory lane at ORP."
Hornaday started the AAA Insurance 200 from the fifth position and was able to move up to third before the first caution of the evening waved on lap nine. Too early in the event to lose track position, crew chief Ernie Cope made the call to stay out. While under caution, Hornaday relayed to Cope that the truck was too tight through the center of the corner.
Under a long green-flag run, Hornaday followed leaders Timothy Peters and Kyle Busch, slowly closing the gap between the top three. On lap 61, Hornaday was able to slide past Busch to take over the second position. Two laps later, Hornaday assumed the lead for the first time of the evening and by lap 75, he had pulled out to over a one- second lead.
The second caution of the night waved on lap 85. Hornaday brought the No. 33 truck down pit road for four tires, fuel and an air-pressure adjustment. Quick pit work by the No. 33 team allowed Hornaday to maintain the lead for the restart on lap 90. Hornaday continued to hold off a hard charging Busch until the caution waved again on lap 118. Trying to conserve tires and maintain track position, the No. 33 team decided to keep Hornaday on the track.
Continuing to keep Peters and Busch at bay, the No. 33 team came to pit road under the fourth caution on lap 141 as Hornaday told the team the truck was rolling really good through the center of the corners. Cope called for four tires, fuel and no adjustments. Another speedy pit stop by the No. 33 team once again allowed Hornaday to maintain his track position in front of all the trucks that came down for service. The No. 17 and No. 23 trucks opted not to pit under the caution, placing Hornaday in the third position for the restart on lap 146.
Eight laps later Hornaday assumed the lead for the final time of the night and cruised to his first win of the 2010 season with a 2.096 margin of victory.
This was Hornaday's fourth career win at ORP, he is the only Truck Series driver able to claim this accomplishment. The win also marks the longest Hornaday has gone into a Truck Series season before recording a victory (ORP was the 12th race of the season). Prior to 2010, Hornaday had recorded a win by the seventh race of the season.
Hornaday moved up two positions in the Truck Series driver point standings to fourth 212 points behind leader Todd Bodine. The Truck Series returns to action next weekend at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway for the inaugural Pocono Mountains 125.