For us truck fans, Halloween will never be the same again after Friday nights NCTS Setup. The pre-race show which airs, before each truck race celebrated Halloween Texas style and the crew wore costumes with the Wizard Of Oz as it's theme.
Krista Vodawas the Wicked Witch of the West. Ray Dunlap was Dorothy, with a mustache, hairy legs, red slippers and complete with Toto in a basket. Oh it was creepy, to see him like that but it gets even worse as Adam Alexander was Glinda: the Good Witch, and was just as shocking as Dorothy.
Then you have Rick Allen as the Tin Man, Phil Parsons as the Scarecrow, and Michael Waltrip as the Lion up in the booth.
It was hilarious to see both Dorothy and Glinda on pit road interviewing drivers as they got ready for the race. When Dorothy talked Johnny Benson, I don't think he even blinked and had a shocked look on his face or when Glinda talked to Rick Crawford looked like he was ready to bail and run if need be.
Oh it was great stuff, Dorothy skipping around most of a pit area, talking about pit stops. Or Glinda kissing a couple of drivers, Todd Bodine cuddling with Glinda as they drove around TMS during driver introductions.
But here's the two best moments from the creepy, weird but amusing setup. The first, was Ron Hornaday speechless, unable to answer any question Glinda ask him and kept commenting about your poor mother hope she isn't watching or she'll be creeped out.
The other was Scott Speed, when he took his turn answering what Halloween costume would he want to dress up in and he replied a giant loofah sponge. You could tell that it creeped out Glinda, but typical with Speed you never know what he's going to say and loofah's will never be thought of the same by those who watched the show.
It was a great half-hour of comedy, they proved they are the most entertaining crew announcing in NASCAR Series and my favorites right now. Being Halloween you expect it to be a little weird, creepy, humor filled and if they re-aired sure I'd watch it again.
Now let's go racin', truck style on Halloween, under the lights and a spooky sliver moon.
On Friday night, Ron Hornaday won the Chevy Silverado 350K, dominating the final 90 Laps, and led the last 40 laps for his sixth win of 2008. He sweeps Texas, winning both races at Texas Motor Speedway and sits six points behind Johnny Benson now.
Hornaday would overcome being a lap down early, earn his lap back and just dominated his way from thirteenth to the lead.
Rick Crawford in the No. 14 Maxx Force International Diesel Ford F-150 truck starts on the pole and Cale Gale in the No. 2 American Commercial Lines Chevrolet Silverado truck started on the outside pole position.
Kyle Busch in the No. 51 Miccosukee Resorts/NOS Energy Drink Toyota Tundra truck starts third. Great hard work by the 51 team, having lost the teams hauler to fire and salvaging the primary truck from it.
Travis Kvapil in the No. 09 Zaxby Ford F-150 truck starts fourth and Max Papisin his debut, starts fifth in the No. 07 Geico Toyota Tundra truck.
Ron Hornaday starts seventh, in the No. 33 VFW Chevrolet Silverado truck and Johnny Benson started twentieth in the No. 23 Toyota Certified Used Vehicles Toyota Tundra truck.
On Lap One, Rick Crawford took the green flag with Cale Gale right next to him, coming out of turn one Kyle Busch would drop to the bottom and pass both drivers for the lead.
On Lap Two, the first caution came out for Cale Gale bouncing off of the wall, resulting from getting loose while racing three wide with Travis Kvapil and Rick Crawford.
It would result in a chain reaction wreck that claimed T.J. Bell in the No. 7 Home4theholidays.org Chevrolet Silverado truck would wreck hitting the wall, after Todd Bodine in the No. 30 Lumber Liquidators Toyota Tundra truck ran into and spun him into the wall.
Both Ryan Lawler in the No. 15 Ergon Hyprene Toyota Tundra truck would receive damage in the wreck and Jon Wood in the No. 21 Air force Ford F-150 truck would also wreck hard into the wall.
Rick Crawford had a left front flat and had slight damage behind the left front tire. He would come to pit road, for new tires, pull out the sheet metal and restarted at the end of the longest line.
Todd Bodine also came to pit road for repairs, to his trucks nose. His pit crew would put a new nose piece on the truck using rivets and would lose a lap getting repairs.
Ron Hornaday would make it through the wreck by going high avoiding it and Johnny Benson went low avoiding both wrecks.
On Lap 10, under caution, the top five was as follows: Kyle Busch leading, Travis Kvapil in second, Max Papis in third, Ron Hornaday in fourthand Colin Braun in the No. 6 Con Way Freight Ford F-150 truck running in fifth.
On the Lap 13 restart, Kyle Busch would take the green, pull away from Travis Kvapil in second. Ron Hornaday in fourth is all over the bumper of Max Papis in third.
On Lap 14, Ron Hornaday would go low passing Max Papis for third and pulls away after Kvapil in second.
On Lap 15, the second caution would come out for Max Papis, who was losing position, would have contact with Erik Darnell in the No. 99 Northern Tool and Equipment Ford F-150 truck and resulted with Papis hitting the wall.
The top five under caution was Kyle Busch leading, Travis Kvapil in second, Ron Hornaday in third, Dennis Setzer in the No. 18 Carter County Dodge Dodge Ram truck in fourth and Colin Braun in fifth.
Johnny Benson has worked his way to 12th, seems like his truck is running better than last week.
On the Lap 20 restart, Kyle Busch takes the green with Travis Kvapil right on his bumper and Ron Hornaday in third with in striking distance of the top two.
On Lap 21, Scott Speed's running in sixth, in the No. 22 Red Bull Toyota Tundra truck, dodged both wrecks on Lap Two and looks good so far.
On Lap 25, Ron Hornaday would go low, passes Travis Kvapil coming off turn two takes second and sets sail for Busch.
Johnny Benson would crack the top 10, passing Brian Scott in the No. 16 Albertson Toyota Tundra truck.
On Lap 26, Colin Braun would move to fourth passing Dennis Setzer going down on the low side.
Also Kyle Busch is still leading, but Ron Hornaday is right their only a couple of truck lengths back.
On Lap 27, Dennis Setzer in fifth, starts feeling pressure from Scott Speed and they start have a great battle for the position.
After 30 Laps, the top five was: Kyle Busch leading, Ron Hornaday in second, Travis Kvapil in third, Colin Braun in fourth, and Dennis Setzer in fifth.
On Lap 35, Kyle Busch starts to put some distance between himself and Ron Hornaday in second, with close to a second lead now.
On Lap 38, Kyle Busch's lead has shrunk to 0.432 seconds over Ron Hornaday in second. But has been having a hard time lapping trucks.
On Lap 40, Scott Speed is finally able to pass Dennis Setzer for fifth, it was a great 12 lap battle for fifth.
On Lap 46, Kyle Busch stretches the lead back to 0.932 seconds over Ron Hornaday in second. He's free for the moment of having to battle slower trucks trying to stay on the lead lap.
On Lap 49, the top five was, Kyle Busch leading, Ron Hornaday in second, Travis Kvapil in third, Colin Braun in fourth, and Scott Speed in fifth.
On Lap 52, Ron Hornaday has caught up to Kyle Busch the leader who's fighting with Rick Crawford to put him a lap down and just can't get past him.
On Lap 54, Ron Hornaday goes low, makes it three wide pass with Kyle Busch and Rick Crawford and would take the lead from Kyle Busch.
On Lap 57, Ron Hornaday would make a green flag pit stop for his first stop. As the third caution would come out with him on pit road.
Jack Smith in the No. 63 Dave Porter Truck Sales Ford F-150 truck blew a tire.
Ron Hornaday and his No. 33 Camping World crew didn't panic, made it a four tire stop and not just two. Then come back when pit road was open, for the other two tires.
Ron Hornaday would exit pit road, a lap down and needs to quickly battle the lap traffic to get the Aaron's Lucky Dog Award.
But when the leaders pitted, Ron Hornaday stayed out and didn't pit. He will restart tailend of the lead lap in sixteen and right in front of race leader Travis Kvapil.
The top five off of pit road after pit stops was; Travis kvapil leading, Kyle Busch in second, Erik Darnell in third, Colin Braun in fourth, and Scott Speed in fifth.
Todd Bodine would be the Aaron's Lucky Dog winner for this caution.
On the Lap 62 restart, the green flew with Ron Hornaday taking off putting six truck length distance over Kyle Busch who passes Travis Kvapil for the lead.
On Lap 65, the fourth caution would fly for David Starr spinning in the Zachry Toyota Tundra truck after moving to low side, making contact with Dennis Setzer.
Chad McCumbee in the No. 8 Malcolmson Construction Chevrolet Silverado truck would also be collected and damaged in the wreck.
It was a great battle, for three laps watching, Ron Hornaday just stay a couple of truck lengths ahead of Kyle Busch. Busch tried very hard to put Hornaday a lap down, but just couldn't catch or pass him to do it.
Ron Hornaday would be back on the lead lap earning it and Rick Crawford the pole sitter gets the Aaron's Lucky Dog winner.
On Lap 67, Ron Hornaday would pit under the caution, gets fuel, make a adjustment to the handling of the truck, and comes off pit road 13th.
The top five off of pit road was; Kyle Busch in first, Travis Kvapil in second, Erik Darnell in third, Colin Braun in fourth, and Scott Speed in fifth.
On the Lap 70 restart, Kyle Busch takes the green, pulling away from Travis Kvapil who has teammate Erik Darnell on his bumper.
Ron Hornaday who restarted 13th, passes two trucks and sits in 11th right behind Johnny Benson in 10th.
Todd Bodine would pass Scott Speed for fifth place.
On Lap 71, Scott Speed would lose sixth, to Mike Skinner in the No. 5 Tundra Sponsored Toyota Tundra truck.
On Lap 72, Ron Hornaday would go low passing Johnny Benson for 10th. A lap later, Johnny Benson would battle back re-passing Hornaday.
On Lap 74, Ron Hornadaywould re-pass Johnny Benson for ninth. But Benson would have known of it trying to go three wide, when Ron Hornaday would try to pass Scott Speed in eighth.
On Lap 75, Ron Hornaday would hold onto ninth, putting a couple of truck lengths on Johnny Benson in tenth.
On Lap 76, Ron Hornaday goes low passing Scott Speed for eight and passes the lapped truck of Paul Tracy in the No. 9 Bombardier Learjet/Sport Clips Toyota Tundra truck.
On Lap 78, Kyle Busch is leading by 0.787 over Travis Kvapil in second.
On Lap 79, Ron Hornaday in eighth, has caught up to Mike Skinner in seventh and puts pressure on him.
On Lap 80, both David Starr and Brendan Gaughan would bounce their trucks off the wall and keep right on truckin'.
After 80 laps, the top five was, Kyle Busch leading, Travis Kvapil in second, Erik Darnell in third, Colin Braun in fourth, and Terry Cook in the No. 59 Team ASE/Harris Trucking Toyota Tundra truck was fifth.
On Lap 81, Ron Hornaday would pass Mike Skinner for seventh and Skinner also lost eighth to Scott Speed.
On Lap 84, Mike Skinner in ninth, feels the pressure from Johnny Benson in 10th and they battle it out for the position.
On Lap 85, Kyle Busch has almost a second lead on Travis Kvapil in second.
On Lap 86, Ron Hornaday would pass Todd Bodine for sixth place. Mean while Mike Skinner and Johnny Benson are still going at it, side by side for ninth.
On Lap 88, Johnny Benson would finally pass Mike Skinner for ninth. Benson would be upset with Skinner making him race for the position, but like Kevin Harvick, Inc. seems Bill Davis Racing doesn't have team orders either.
On Lap 91, Ron Hornaday passes both Colin Braun and Terry Cook, now running in fourth, they drop to fifth and sixth.
On Lap 94, the fifth caution flag came out for Donny Lia in the No. 81 Nationrides.com Chevrolet Silverado truck would loose it coming out of turn four, spinning down pit road without hitting anything.
Pit road would open on Lap 95, the lead lap trucks would all pit. The top five off of pit road were as follows: Travis Kvapil in first, Erik Darnell second, Kyle Busch third, Ron Hornaday fourth, and Colin Braun fifth.
Travis Kvapil and Erik Darnell would make contact exiting pit road, but neither truck was damaged badly from it.
Kyle Busch went with fuel and adjustments, saving four tires for a late caution.
On the Lap 99 restart, Travis Kvapil takes the green with Erik Darnell and Kyle Busch right behind him.
On Lap 100, Kyle Busch would pass Erik Darnell for second, while Travis Kvapil was close to a second lead on them.
On Lap 101, Ron Hornaday in fourth, would make a run on Erik Darnell in third, but couldn't make the pass stick.
On Lap 102, Travis Kvapilis still leading, with Kyle Busch right their on his bumper. But catching and passing are two different things.
On Lap 104, Ron Hornaday passes Erik Darnell by moving to the low side and takes third.
On Lap 106, Travis Kvapil still has the lead with Kyle Busch tight their and Ron Hornaday in striking distance of both of them.
On Lap 107, Ron Hornaday charges pass Kyle Busch on the high side for second and is on Kvapil's bumper for the lead.
On Lap 108, Ron Hornaday would charge pass Travis Kvapil for the lead and pull away by a couple of truck lengths. Kyle Busch nearly lost third to Erik Darnell but hold him off.
On Lap 109, Kyle Busch would pass Travis Kvapil for second place. Wow, half a lap ago, Busch looked like he'd be fourth.
On Lap 113, Ron Hornaday leads, Kyle Busch by a second plus.
On Lap 114, Ron Hornaday is pulling away from the field, has a 1.285 second lead on Kyle Busch in second.
On Lap 116, Johnny Benson's running in sixth, his truck has been a adjustment off all night but you wouldn't know it from how well he's moving up front.
After 119 of 147 Laps, the top five was as follows: Ron Hornaday leading by 1.670 seconds, Kyle Busch in second, Travis Kvapil in third, Todd Bodine in fourth, and Colin Braun in fifth.
On Lap 124, Ron Hornaday leads Kyle Busch by over 1.763 seconds, has a six second lead on Todd Bodine in third.
On Lap 126, Ron Hornaday stretches that lead out over Kyle busch to 1.860 seconds.
On Lap 127, Johnny Benson is running in sixth, has Colin Braun in fifth, Travis Kvapil in fourth and Todd Bodine in third right in front of him.
On Lap 128, Colin Braun in fifth, would go to the high side to pass Travis Kvapil for fourth.
On Lap 129, Johnny Benson would pass Travis Kvapil for fifth, as Kvapil seems to have handling issues and has lost a few positions.
On Lap 130, Ron Hornaday has a 2.022 seconds lead on Kyle Busch and close to a seven second lead on Todd Bodine in third.
On Lap 135, Ron Hornaday leads by 1.942 seconds on Kyle Busch.
On Lap 136, Johnny Benson is on Colin Braun's bumper in fourth and starts trying to pass him to no avail.
On Lap 137, Ron Hornaday's still leading by 1.980 seconds, but Todd Bodine's truck engine is starting to over heating with a temperature of 260 degrees from what Speed Tv announced.
On Lap 138, Brian Scott in 10th, passes Scott Speed for ninth.
On Lap 139, Ron Hornaday leads, Kyle Busch by 2.265 seconds and eight seconds over Todd Bodine in third.
On Lap 140, Terry Cook running in seventh, would pass Travis Kvapil on the high-side for sixth.
On Lap 141, Ron Hornaday's still leading by two seconds, but catching up to lapped traffic.
On Lap 143, Ron Hornaday still leading by close to two seconds. He has been hitting the lap traffic just right and passing them quickly.
Johnny Benson would also pass Colin Braun for fourth and is right on Bodine's bumper for third.
On Lap 144, Ron Hornaday still leads Kyle Busch by 1.8 seconds. Johnny Benson starts putting pressure on Todd Bodine in third.
On Lap 145, Ron Hornaday's still got about 1.5 second lead on Kyle Busch in second. Johnny Benson is side by side with Todd Bodine for third.
On Lap 146, Ron Hornaday would take the white flag with a little over a second lead on Busch. Johnny Benson would pass Todd Bodine for third.
Ron Hornaday would take the checkers on Lap 147, beating Busch by 0.958, claim his sixth win of the year, sweeps Texas and his 39th career win.
Hornaday would lead 45 laps tonight, do the victory burnouts, get the checkered flag and climb out of his truck standing on the door in victory lane to the cheers of the fans. Gives Lindy a kiss, then celebrates with Rick Ren and his crew.
Hornaday would thank the VFW, dedicated the win to the troops and veterans, Camping World, Mike Smith in engines and the Harvicks's.
"No matter what I do, Benson's right there," Hornaday said after the race. "So it's going to come down to the end of it." (nascar.com)
"I'm pretty good at Phoenix, and Johnny's pretty good there, too, so we'll just see what happens," Hornaday said. "This is pretty cool. Two more race and we'll see." (nascar.com)
Kyle Busch would finish second, having led 87 laps and for the second week, his team saved a set of tires for a late caution that doesn't happen.
The entire 51 Team and Billy Ballew Motorsportsshould be proud of the finish. Withwhat they had to deal with losing it's hauler to fire and the hard work they did to get the salvaged truck race ready.
Had they taken tires like everyone else on that last caution, who knows they might have just gotten the win.
Busch would mention his disappointment with the ruling by NASCAR effecting the Toyota teams. He also mentioned, that KHI with Hornaday found something similar to JGR's Nationwide program.
Johnny Benson fought his way to a third place finish. Todd Bodine would finish fourth and Colin Braun finished fifth, also was the Raybestos Rookie of the Race.
The points are now Johnny Benson by six points over Ron Hornaday and 223 points over Todd Bodine.
The Top 10 from the Chevy Silverado 350K was as follows:
1. Ron Hornaday
2. Kyle Busch
3. Johnny Benson
4. Todd Bodine
5. Colin Braun
6. Terry Cook
7. Travis Kvapil
8. Mike Skinner
9. Brian Scott
10. Scott Speed
The next race is next Friday, Nov. 7th at Phoenix, for the Casino 150 on Speed at 7:30PM.
Lastly, thanks Speed TV, Krista Voda, Ray Dunlap, Adam Alexander, Rick Allen, Phil Parsons, and Michael Waltrip for the great Halloween NCTS Setup show with the Wizard of Oz theme. It was a classic, that I'll always remember and second only to "Buffet" Benny.