Ben Rhodes – 2016 Martinsville Recap

during practice for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Texas Roadhouse 200 presented by Alpha Energy Solutions at Martinsville Speedway on October 28, 2016 in Martinsville, Virginia.

Race Information:
Started: 14th
Finished: 19th
Laps: 200/200
Laps Led: 0
Status: Running
2016 Driver Points: 13th
2016 Owner Points: 15th

Ben Rhodes Race Recap:

Ben Rhodes, driver of the No. 41 Texas Roadhouse Toyota Tundra, made his third career start at Martinsville Speedway in Saturday’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Texas Roadhouse 200 presented by Alpha Energy Solutions. Starting 14th, Rhodes maintained a position inside the top-15 throughout the 200-lap event, fighting a “loose on entry, and tight on exit” Toyota Tundra. Crew chief Kevin Bellicourt brought the No. 41 machine to pit road at laps 51, 109, and 150, for four tires, fuel, and adjustments. Restarting 14th, with 45 laps remaining, the ThorSport Racing driver was able to work his way up to 12th before being forced down pit road at lap 177, under yellow, for no oil pressure. Unfortunately, Rhodes would also be served with a penalty for, “too fast entering,” and restarted from the tail end of the field, in the 21st position. In the final 18 laps, Rhodes was able to gain two positions to finish 19th behind race winner, Johnny Sauter.

Ben Rhodes Quote:

“We struggled all day long with our Texas Roadhouse Toyota Tundra – just a weird phenomenon going on with the rear of the truck – wheel hopping, brake bias not fixing it, just couldn’t quite get the rear-end underneath us. We also had some brake issues throughout the race. It finally started coming to us, and we got some speed in the truck on the last run. I think we were 10th at the time, and Ben (Kennedy) was ninth. We passed several trucks, I was just trying to keep the run going. I gave him a little nudge, and got him up the track a little bit, but he was slowing down to try and keep it on the bottom. I got into him a second time, on the bottom, and it spun him around. It’s unfortunate how it happened, that wasn’t my intention. When you do that, you just want to get passed him. I wanna race people the way I wanna be raced. At the same time, I wasn’t very appreciative of the gestures I got from them either. I guess that’s Martinsville for ya though, it tends to bring out the best in everybody.”

News & Notes:

  • The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) had two practice sessions on Friday afternoon in preparation for Saturday’s Texas Roadhouse 200 presented by Alpha Energy Solutions at Martinsville Speedway. Ben Rhodes was ninth, and sixth, respectively, in both sessions.
  • Making his third career start at Martinsville Speedway in the NCWTS, Rhodes started 14th, ran as high as fourth, and finished 21st, due to a late-race pit stop due to no oil pressure late in the 200-lap event.
  • In three career starts at the .529-mile paperclip, Rhodes has one pole, and has led 42 laps en route to one top-10 finish.
  • In 20 starts in 2016, Rhodes has led 55 laps en route to two top-five, and five top-10 finishes.
  • In 24 career NCWTS starts, Rhodes has one pole (Martinsville), and has led 55 laps en route to three top-five, and eight top-10 finishes.
  • Rhodes’ ThorSport Racing teammates finished 11th (Hayley), 17th (Crafton), and 24th (Abreu).
  • Up Next: The Longhorn 350 at Texas Motor Speedway on Friday, November 4, 2016.
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