Benson, Ince sign contact extension

Benson, Ince sign multi-year deal with MB2/Valvoline Racing. Valvoline Racing and MB2 Motorsports announced today that Johnny Benson and Crew Chief James Ince have signed multi-year contract extensions to continue at the ...

Benson, Ince sign multi-year deal with MB2/Valvoline Racing.

Valvoline Racing and MB2 Motorsports announced today that Johnny Benson and Crew Chief James Ince have signed multi-year contract extensions to continue at the #10 Valvoline Pontiac.

Benson said the foundation already in place at the Concord, N.C. race shop was a factor in his decision to return to the #10 team.

"My goal is to do well and retire from this place some day," said Benson. "James and I have said from the start that we wanted to keep all of the crew members, team owners, and sponsors together and that is just what we have done. We know we have the foundation for a winning effort here and there is no place we'd rather work."

Benson and Ince have been with the #10 team since 2000 when they nearly won the Daytona 500 in a car fielded by Tyler Jet Motorsports. Midway through the year MB2 purchased Tyler Jet's assets. In 2001 Valvoline became an equal partner with MB2 making it the first consumer products company to own a Winston Cup team.

Jim Rocco, senior vice president at Valvoline, said continuity is an important ingredient to success in racing and one of the reasons why Valvoline wanted to continue the Benson and Ince relationship.

"This is great news for our company and all of our fans. We wanted Johnny and James and I know they wanted to stay with us. We think the team they have built and the people involved in our program are the kind Valvoline wants to be associated with. We took a bold step in owning this team so we have had a strong interest in making sure we have the people in place that we wanted."

Ince, who at 31 years of age is one of the youngest crew chief in the Winston Cup garage, said this contract would not change his goals.

"Our goal is to win with Valvoline Pontiac. Simple as that. I have always said if they weren't paying us a dime, we would want to win races. I'd trade all the money in the world for a trophy."

Team General Manager Jay Frye said bringing Benson and Ince back was not a tough decision.

"Keeping Johnny and James together was a priority from the moment that the year started. We wanted to have them locked in by mid-season and that's exactly what we have done," Frye said. "Silly season gets earlier and earlier each year so while we weren't the first team to announce our plans we are on the scheduled we set for ourselves in the off-season."

Benson and Ince have combined for 5 top-three finishes and 22 top-ten finishes in 86 starts together. Benson has finished second at Bristol and Dover in 2000. Ince served as crew chief when Benson, David Green, Rich Bickle, Ted Musgrave and Kevin Lepage all recorded their best career finishes.

-vr-

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Rich Bickle , Kevin Lepage , Johnny Benson , Ted Musgrave , David Green