Arriving at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway for the Kroger 200, Ron Hornaday was looking to score his second-career win at the .526-mile paperclip track. Securing the fourth starting position in his No. 9 Smokey Mountain Herbal Snuff Silverado, Hornaday was the top-qualifying NTS Motorsports Chevrolet.
As the race got underway, Hornaday quickly settled into the top five clicking off one lap at a time as he kept his eyes on the leaders waiting to make his move to the front.
On lap 68 of 200, the caution flag was displayed for the second time. Hornaday was called to pit road for four tires and fuel. The race restated with Hornaday eighth, but he immediately moved to sixth behind NTS Motorsports teammate Kevin Harvick. Harvick relayed a message to his spotter that was delivered to Hornaday, to take care of his Truck and follow him through to the front.
Under the third caution of the race on lap 91, the team chose to leave Hornaday on track and he restarted the race in the sixth position. Battling for position on the restart, Hornaday and another competitor made contact, sending the No. 9 Chevrolet to the high side and falling to the 14th spot before the caution was displayed on lap 100 for debris. Hornaday pitted for right-side tires and to assess the damage to the No. 9 Silverado. Hornaday restarted in 17th place.
The Smokey Mountain Herbal Snuff team made their final scheduled stop of the race under the lap 128 caution for four tires and fuel. The race restarted and several laps later, was again under yellow-flag conditions on lap 137. This time, Hornaday was not so lucky and sustained significant damage to the No. 9 Silverado forcing the team back to pit road to repair the damage. The race restarted with Hornaday in the 21st position.
With the Kroger 200 back to green-flag conditions, a wreck in front of Hornaday slowed the field on lap 144. Under the caution, Hornaday and the team pulled the No. 9 Smokey Mountain Herbal Snuff Chevrolet behind the wall to repair damage. Hornaday returned to the race several laps down to the leaders and finished the race in the 28th position.
Ron Hornaday Post Race Thoughts:
"I'm proud of Bruce and all of the guys up at NTS to bring three good trucks to Martinsville. They've been working a lot of hours to make sure myself and Brennan have the best of everything to race with for these last four races of the season. It was a whole lot of take and no give today, as the outside of the track never came in during the race, so there wasn't a whole lot of space to pass on."
NTS Motorsports PR