Benson One Of The Best At Gaining Positions Once Race Starts ...
Benson One Of The Best At Gaining Positions Once Race Starts
#10 Tyler Jet Motorsports Pontiac driver Johnny Benson often jokes that he doesn't mind a bad qualifying run because it makes him eligible for the $5,000 Exide Award that goes to the driver who gains the most spots during the race. Not only does the team collect the money, but Benson gets the "opportunity" to make a brief speech to the fans at the award ceremony the following week held right before driver introductions. Benson has won that award at Bristol, Sears Point and Charlotte in the 2000 season.
<pre> Average Gain In 2000 Races
Driver Avg. Start Avg. Fin. Avg. Gain
1 Earnhardt 19.4 8.8 10.6 2 Little 30.4 20.8 9.6 3 Labonte T 26.8 17.5 9.3 4 Schrader 27.9 20.2 7.7 5 Burton J 19.4 11.8 7.6 6 Marlin 27.4 19.8 7.6 7 Stewart 18.8 12.2 6.5 8 Kenseth 23.4 17.2 6.2 9 Benson 24.5 18.6 5.9 10 Burton W 16.2 10.3 5.9
</pre> Benson on Gaining Spots In the Race:
"It would be cool if this were roller derby and you got points for passing during the race. But $5,000 from Exide is pretty good. We are an unsponsored race team so any chance we get to make a buck we aren't going to let slip through our hands. That award ceremony on the front stretch before the race is pretty fun. All the fans are staring at you wishing you would quit talking and start racing. I think they know we race better than we talk."
"This shows we have raced a lot better than we have qualified. We need to improve our qualifying, but if you look on that list there are some pretty strong teams up there with us. I think so many of these teams are geared toward concentrating on race setups that the qualifying tends to slip a bit. Remember where you finish matters a lot more than where you start."