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Tuffy Hudson has rough USRA SLM race at THR

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Tuffy Suffers ‘Rocky’ Run in USRA SLM race at Thunder Hill Raceway


Having a first name like “Tuffy” gives Tuffy Hudson – driver of the #7 Kiewitt Off Shore Services LTD. Chevrolet Monte Carlo in the United States Racing Assocation (USRA-TX) Super Late Model series – a “rugged” persona.


However, Tuffy’s run at Thunder Hill Raceway last Saturday (April 23) could have been nicknamed “Rocky,” as in tiny little pebbles that frustrated the #7 race team with flat tires.


Three flats, in fact.


Hudson, who finished 13th in the ROMCO Equipment 125 on Saturday night, revealed his team’s weekend started with two flat tires in practice on the Friday night before the race. “One of them was a brand new tire that didn’t even get one lap in on the track, and we got just a couple of laps on another tire before a rock put an early end to its life.”


Despite the “rocky” start, Hudson and his crew – Jared Benker, crew chief; and crew members Glen Harris, Roy Culver, Mark Taylor, Eugene Swango, Shawn Petrie, Carl Hudson, Cody Rogers and Tuffy Hudson, Senior – had reason to celebrate after qualifying for the ROMCO Equipment 125 on Saturday afternoon. Hudson guided his car to a best-lap time of 14.533 seconds around the 3/8-mile asphalt oval at THR.


That was good enough for 6th-fastest and it put Hudson in the final position in the “hat draw” for the invert. Hudson was left with the #5 cap, giving him the start on the inside of Row 3. “Qualifying went very well, and our whole crew was very excited for the race,” said the Portland (TX) resident.


Hudson, who was the 2004 ROMCO Series Rookie of the Year, maintained a Top-5 run until “lucky” Lap #13. That’s when yet another rock found a home in the right front tire of Hudson’s car – forcing Hudson to exit the track and head towards the pits.


“What a shame,” Hudson stated. “We had a really good car so I know the whole crew was disappointed. After we came back out on the track, we were so many laps down that I was out there to get some seat time. The car ran well and the time we spent out there (Hudson completed 117 of 125 laps) helped me get a good idea on the car and how well it can run.”


Hudson added, “Right now we’re snake bit. We’ve had a run of back luck right now, but I hope to change that at Corpus (Christi Motor Speedway on May 14, the next scheduled USRA race). We’ll look to turn our luck around at our home track. I’d really like to do something, - maybe a Top-5, at least a Top-10 finish – in front of my home town crowd.”


Tuffy Hudson, Senior, who doubles as car owner, stated, “Overall, we had a good day at Thunder Hill. When that tire went flat, we knew we were in trouble because at a small track you can’t get your laps back. It was disappointing - we felt we had a good car.”

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