#10 Lycos Pontiac driver Johnny Benson finished second at Bristol on Sunday earning his career best finish. He's also led a pack of Fords for 38 laps at Daytona before they passed him with three laps to go. But both of those fine performances could be trumped this weekend when Benson races in car owner Tim Beverley's home state of Texas. Not only will Benson carry the hopes of Tyler, Texas's favorite car owner, but the Texas state flag will adorn his rear deck lid. Benson is 16th in the 2000 driver points despite missing Atlanta and 14th in car owner points.
"I think if you asked Tim, winning here would just about be the greatest thing in his world and I think I would agree with him. It would be like me winning at Michigan. We work hard all the time but you always try a little harder for the home folks and I think all of us would like to give Tim a little bit of a present. Heck that would be a big present. The Texas flag on the deck lid is pretty cool. When I first started at Tyler Jet and drove to the shop there were three flags out front. The American flag was there and it looked like two North Carolina state flags but then I got to looking at it and realized it was the Texas flag. If it brings us a victory then we will run the Texas flag every weekend I suspect.
"I like Texas. It's a fast racetrack. I finished fifth there in 1998 so it's a place I think I can get around pretty well. They have made a bunch of improvements since we started there so I think we will put on a pretty good show for the fans. It takes us drivers and teams a while to learn the track and once everyone figures out how to go fast then you start seeing more equal competition and that means better shows."
"You always want to do well whenever you come to play in your own backyard. Tyler is about 100 miles from the track so we will have a ton of friends and family there. If I were going to pick a race I'd like to win I'd pick Indianapolis or Daytona but after that it would certainly be Texas. How about the flag? James Ince called me up and suggested we put the Texas flag on the rear decklid for the race. I think that will be pretty neat. It's a way to give back to them for all the support they have given us over the years."
Tyler Jet Notes
a.. Benson's average finish for the five races he has raced in this season is 11th.
a.. In addition to Benson, Kevin Lepage, Ted Musgrave, David Green, and Rich Bickle have all recorded their best career finishes with crew chief James Ince.
a.. Benson and the Lycos team will test at Martinsville on Tuesday and Wednesday.
a.. This weekend's Lycos Pontiac is the car that won the Homestead pole in November with David Green and finished sixth with Johnny Benson at Las Vegas.
a.. Race: Sunday, April 2, 2000 in Fort Worth, TX
Texas in in Central time, all times listed here are Eastern Time(1 hour ahead)
b.. TV: CBS 2:00pm/et
c.. 1999 Race Winner: Terry Labonte
d.. Race Speed Record: Terry Labonte, 1999, 144.276mph
e.. Track/Race Length: 1.5 mile tri-oval, 334 laps, 500.5 miles
f.. Practice: Friday, Mar 31st 12:00noon-1:15pm/et; 2:05-3:00pm/et; Saturday, Apr 1st, 10:00-11:00am/et
g.. Happy Hour Practice: Saturday, Apr 1st, after the BGN race, TV-?
h.. Qualifying Draw: Friday, Mar 31st at 11:30am/et
i.. First Round Qualifying: 1 lap for positions 1-25, Friday, Mar 31st at 4:30pm/et, TV-? and live via PRN radio/internet(link below)
j.. Second-Round Qualifying: 1 lap for positions 26th on back, Saturday, Apr 1st at 11:45am/et
k.. Track/Race Qualifying Record: Kenny Irwin, 1999, 190.154mph
l.. Last Year's Pole Sitter: Kenny Irwin, 190.154mph
m.. Pit Road Speed: 45mph