Ben Kennedy may one day enter the administrative side of the family business, but for now he is very happy getting his “hands dirty” in driving and team ownership in NASCAR.
Kennedy, 24, the great-grandson of NASCAR founder Bill France Sr., he set to begin his third full season in the Camping World Truck Series. On Wednesday, he announced a new sponsor addition, Jacob Companies, to his No. 11 Red Horse Racing team.
I get to see both sides of the spectrum – the owner side and the driver side. They’re really completely different.
Asked how long he was willing to make a go of his driving career, Kennedy said, “As long as I can make it work. I’m taking it one step at a time right now. I don’t want to get ahead of myself or anything.”
Kennedy hinted he may have some additional driving opportunities to come in the 2016 season but was reluctant to release any more details.
“We’re going to have some more announcements here in the next couple of weeks that I’m really excited about but I can’t really talk about that much now,” he said. “I’m going to give this racing stuff a valiant effort.
“I love it. I enjoy it. I enjoy the competitive nature of it. At the end of the day I’m learning something about the business. Having my own K&N Series team, I’m learning something about partnerships, building relationships. Whether I end up in the business or not, I’ll have all that in my back pocket.”
Kennedy, the son of International Speedway Corp. CEO Lesa France Kennedy, holds a degree in sports management from the University of Florida.
He excelled on the short tracks of Florida and won a pair of races in the K&N Pro Series East in 2013. His career-best finish in Trucks is third, which he has accomplished four times.
A unique perspective
Kennedy said his diverse background and experience in NASCAR gives him a perspective unlike many of his competitors on the track.
“I get to see both sides of the spectrum – the owner side and the driver side. They’re really completely different. I love still being a part of the K&N series (as an owner) – it was like home for me for a while,” Kennedy said.
“It’s also good to have the driving experience. You kind of get your hands dirty with the team a little. I really enjoy all aspects of it. The sport is really diverse and there are so many things going on. It’s about making the best of all of them that you possibly can.”