Rogers Tames Darlington, Heads to Martinsville with Momentum
CERRO GORDO, N.C. (March 30, 2011) – Darlington Raceway has a habit of punishing racers daring to tackle the egg-shaped oval for the first time. More often than not, the race truck piloted by rookies ends up as a pile of crumpled sheet metal by the time the checkered flag falls at the “Track too Tough to Tame.”
But this was not the case for Clay Rogers, driver of the Ricky Benton Racing (RBR) Enterprises BTS Tire & Wheel Distributors/fleetHQ.com No. 92 Chevy Silverado. Rogers, and his truck, not only survived the “Lady in Black,” but the Mooresville, N.C. native was knocking on the door of the top-10 at the end of the Too Tough to Tame 200, finishing 11th.
“I think we ran a very smart race at Darlington,” Rogers said. “There were 16 rookies in the field, so we had to look ahead, see the way guys were racing each other and try to avoid those situations.
“We were able to avoid a couple of those, especially early on and it allowed us to bring the truck home in one piece for a good finish.”
With the finish, Rogers finds himself fourth in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series standings heading to Martinsville, a track where he has more experience. In addition to making a NCWTS start in 2007, Rogers has been a competitor in a Late Model event at the track. “Martinsville can be a tricky place,” said Rogers. “The problem is when something happens you don’t have anywhere to go to miss it. It’s just so narrow. You have to plot and plan how you are going to get around the guys in front of you if they have a problem.
“Hopefully we can qualify the truck well and keep it out front of any trouble that other trucks have on track.” Martinsville marks the fourth race coupling Rogers with RBR and the driver feels that the team is improving as the season progresses.
“Our confidence in each other is going up,” said Rogers. “I am getting more accustomed to how they work and they are learning more and more about what I like. We are just trying to keep our communication growing, and hopefully by the time we get to Charlotte, we’ll be to a point where we are not only running for top-fives but for wins.”