In the Pits- KSR
Finish line nears for another season of racing
As the 2007 Craftsman Truck Series season winds down, teams and drivers are looking to finish the year on a high note, winning or finishing as best as they can in every race they enter, all the while keeping an eye on next year and reflecting back on a campaign nearly done.
Such is the case with Ken Schrader, driver of the No. 18 Fastenal Dodge for Bobby Hamilton Racing.
When asked in September to name his favorite racing moment of 2007, Schrader said, “It always seems it is at this point in the year that everyone starts to reflect on their performance on the season. I am not sure why it works out that way. Teams start to make internal changes to improve performance, new sponsors are announced and everyone starts gearing up for the next season. As a driver I start getting asked the question, ‘How has your season been so far?’ or ‘What is your favorite racing moment of 2007?’
“To be honest, I do not have a favorite racing moment so far in the 2007 season because I think the best is yet to come. This team has overcome so much in the first half of the season with the passing of Bobby (Hamilton) Sr. He was such a knowledgeable chassis man and always knew how to make the truck go faster. When you lose someone as valuable as him it takes a few months to get comfortable again. And that is where I think we are right now. So I think my favorite 2007 moment will come in these final races.”
The same can be said for Schrader in the NASCAR Cup series. Schrader started the year in the No. 21 Little Debbie Ford for the Wood Brothers/JTG car and gave up the seat for four months in favor of Bill Elliott only to reclaim the ride late in the season. While the top 12 drivers and their respective teams have battled for the “Chase for the Championship,” Schrader and the Wood Brothers team have focused on maintaining a top-35 position and the automatic starting spot that goes along with it.
Fall is also the time for football, a sport Schrader tried briefly before finding his true calling behind the wheel of a racecar. “When I was younger, I tried out for football once,” Schrader said. “All my friends were doing it, so I thought I would give it a shot. It did not take me long to realize that it was not for me. Everyone starts out facing each other and then they just start hitting each other. They asked me to run at those padded dummies and hit them as hard as I could. What is that all about? I mean at least in racing we all start out going in the same direction.”