NASCAR: 4-time Truck Series champ Hornaday returning to Sprint Cup

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With 51 wins and four championships, Ron Hornaday Jr. is considered by many as the greatest driver in the history of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.

But in 2015, Hornaday will be making a return to NASCAR’s top level – the Sprint Cup Series – as driver of the No. 30 Chevrolet for Curtis Key’s The Motorsports Group.

TMG is entering the Cup Series after having been a fixture in the XFINITY Series for the past seven seasons. The team also ran in the Truck Series themselves from 2004 to 2009.

“I am happy to be signing on with Curtis Key and the entire TMG organization for the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Season,” Hornaday said today in a team release.

“This team has been working really hard during the offseason to get cars ready for Daytona and the rest of the season. I’m hoping to bring some guidance and racing knowledge to this start-up Cup team.”

It’s been a very long time since Hornaday has competed full-time in Cup. All the way back in 2001, Hornaday drove for A.J. Foyt’s operation but struggled mightily (one Top-10 finish, average finish of 30.5, and four DNQs) before being let go at season’s end.

Altogether, he has not run a Cup race since the 2003 season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. He finished 20th in a car owned by Richard Childress.

Last year, Hornaday was running fourth in the Truck Series standings for Turner Scott Motorsports when a dispute between the team’s owners led to him and his No. 30 team missing the Aug. 31 event at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park.

A few days later, the whole program was shut down. Hornaday would return to action with NTS Motorsports later that year at Las Vegas, Talladega, and Texas in its No. 9 Chevrolet. Despite the missed races, he still finished 14th in the Truck Series standings on the strength of five Top-5s and 10 Top-10s.

Key hopes that Hornaday’s veteran leadership will be useful as TMG gets rolling along in Cup.

“Ron has been involved in the NASCAR industry for over 20 years now,” said Key. “His experience and knowledge of the industry is exactly what we need this first year in the Sprint Cup Series.”

Steve Torrence takes NHRA points lead with Gatornationals victory

NHRA Gainesville Steve Torrence
Jeff Robinson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Two-time defending NHRA Top Fuel champion Steve Torrence took the points lead Sunday in the AMALIE Motor Oil Gatornationals, beating his father, Billy, in the final round at Gainesville Raceway.

Torrence had a 3.809-second run at 322.11 mph to win for the third time this year and 39th overall. He is now on track for another championship despite missing the season opener.

“We’ve got some good momentum and to be in the points lead, it’s a testament to how hard these guys work,” Steve Torrence said after the NHRA Gainesville victory. “We’ve just got to stay focused and concentrate on what the task at hand is, and that’s trying to win a championship. These guys give me an unbelievable race car and you just try not to screw it up.”

Ron Capps won in Funny Car, Alex Laughlin in Pro Stock and Matt Smith in Pro Stock Motorcycle.

Capps raced to his second win this year and 66th overall, beating Tim Wilkerson with a 3.937 at 323.12 in a Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat.

Laughlin topped Aaron Stanfield with a 7.068 at 204.76 in a Chevrolet Camaro for his first win this season and fourth in his career. Smith rode to his first victory in 2020 and 25th overall, topping Andrew Hines with a 6.843 at 196.99 on an EBR.