Phoenix II: Points leader post race interview

JOHNNY BENSON , No. 23 Toyota Certified Used Vehicles Tundra, Bill Davis Racing Finish: 23rd What was tonight's race like for you? "I think if you got Ron (Hornaday, Jr.) and me together we're going to go have a beer or something. It was ...

JOHNNY BENSON , No. 23 Toyota Certified Used Vehicles Tundra, Bill Davis Racing
Finish: 23rd

What was tonight's race like for you?

"I think if you got Ron (Hornaday, Jr.) and me together we're going to go have a beer or something. It was horrible for both of us. I don't know what happened at the start with Ron (Hornaday, Jr.) and when he came across the track we kind of caught as we went by. I don't know what happened with him but that was on that one and then after that I haven't seen anything with the 7 (T.J. Bell). I felt like I was underneath him and felt like he came down. Then we hit and that pretty much ended our day. After our first deal it bent the rear a little bit and we got it working on and felt like we could probably run in the top-six or 10. It was biding our way. I was really trying to be patient. We ended up being on the right place at the wrong time or something, I don't know. We're just making it exciting. I don't know what else to say."

What happened in the first incident tonight?

"All of a sudden we bumped and both spun and wrecked and it pretty much ended our day. It took the right front and pretty much destroyed everything up in the right front."

What were you thinking when Ron Hornaday, Jr., had problems and you didn't look quite so bad?

"I don't think it's either one of our years. Third-place has got to be right there now. It's just weird and amazing how this points deal has been going on. Ron (Hornaday, Jr.) had his and I don't know what happened, what the deal was on that. I know we all hit together when he came across the track. It definitely makes for a long day I can tell you that."

Did you feel like everything was against you with the number of incidents your truck was involved in this evening?

"I don't know what the deal was. The 33 (Ron Hornaday, Jr.) had its problems and they wanted to keep everything close so they started beating on me, I guess (laughter). It was an exciting deal."

How do you feel heading to Homestead with a three-point lead in the championship standings?

"I don't know what to really think. I felt like everyone was out gunning for me and Ron (Hornaday, Jr.). It was just a bad day for the both of us. I don't know what happened to Ron (Hornaday, Jr.) at the beginning, but I know we got a little bit of a piece of that which is tough to do to the leader. I had the same situation two years ago -- spun out leading it and it makes a lot of mess for a lot of people. That aspect, we were involved in that a little bit and bent the truck up. Kept working on it and thought it was -- probably not better -- but after we put tires on it and made some adjustments I thought maybe we could run in the top-six or seven and felt like it was driving good enough. And, I went underneath the 7 (T.J. Bell) -- I'm not really sure what happened there, but that's where we're at."

Have you ever had so many instances in one race?

"Not in this short of a race, but yeah in a Cup race you can probably have even more than that. You know, at the end there we kept blowing tires -- something was rubbing on there and we couldn't figure out what it was. So, we just started disconnecting a lot of stuff and I spun out and I thought I just better get off the race track. So, I got off the race track. It was miserable. It was a bad day."

How much pressure does this put on you heading to Homestead?

"None. We decided at the beginning of the year running for the championship we weren't going to worry about anything and we weren't going to put any pressure on -- we're just going to go have some fun and go do it. So, we're making it fun for the fans -- I can guarantee you that. When you think you have an opportunity to maybe make some gains -- it felt like every truck I got near, not running into you but start making a lot of contact with a lot of different people. I was trying to be as patient as I could around there, but you can't drive other trucks. It ended up being what it's going to be."

Did you think that Ron Hornaday, Jr. would be able gain points on you like this and you would still be in the points lead?

"Well, the rule change, yeah I knew they were going to gain points. That part was going to be pretty obvious. But, we're doing everything we can to hold them off. It felt like that these next two races we have to get through them with no problems and unfortunately we both had problems (today). Really, leaving here today is no different than when we came in."

-credit: toyota motorsports

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Ron Hornaday Jr. , T.J. Bell
Teams Bill Davis Racing