Trackin Trucks: Ben Rhodes Wins at Daytona Road Course

Credit: Debbie Ross for Skirts and Scuffs

Ben Rhodes earned back-to-back victories at Daytona International Speedway with his win on the road course Friday night, February 19th, one week after winning the season opener on the Daytona oval. 

Rhodes scored the win in triple overtime, holding off defending series champion Sheldon Creed and John Hunter Nemechek during the BrakeBest Brake Pads 159. Nemechek overcame a series of issues, including the loss of oil pressure, to earn his first top-five finish of the season. 

Todd Gilliland finished fourth and Riley Herbst fifth. Matt Crafton, Derek Kraus, Kaz Grala, Timmy Hill, and Christian Eckes finished sixth through 10th, respectively. 

“Unbelievable, I don’t even have words for it,” Rhodes said. “I don’t even know what to say, this is so cool.”

“I just have to thank my team. The Bombardier Tundra was fast all day. ThorSport Racing gave me a truck that handled this year and we were fast. Rich (Lushes) is a really good crew chief. It’s good to be paired up with him and all of the guys on my team. I’m just thrilled. I don’t know what to say. I’ve been on cloud nine all week, so it’s above that. I’m just so happy.”

The race was a chaotic wreckfest, with the yellow flying nine times for incidents and forcing seven additional laps in overtime. The hits started with an incident on Lap 10 and included a wreck on Lap 42 with Sam Mayer and Tanner Gray, which sent the race into its first overtime.  Rhodes was about 50 yards from the white flag and potentially the win, when a caution came out between Austin Wayne Self and Gilliland.

Additional overtimes were for Jennifer Jo Cobb and Jett Noland.

“Never fun being the first loser,” Creed said. “But my guys brought a fast truck and I felt like we were on top of the strategy there going to slicks early. Man, got hit by a lapper there leading and I don’t think that did us any favors — and got to the lead, saving fuel and then worked my way back to the lead and got pushed out the way on the restart, just doing everything I could there. Wished it could have stayed green.”

A Look Ahead

The Camping World Truck Series return in two weeks, on March 5th, at Las Vegas Motor Speedway for the Silver State 200. 

Kyle Busch held off Johnny Sauter by almost six seconds one year ago, while Austin Hill, Crafton, and Rhodes rounded out the top five. 

Can a different Truck Series star earn their first victory of the season? Find out on March 5, 2021 at 9 p.m./ET on Fox Sports 1.

Trackin Trucks: Ben Rhodes Wins at Daytona Road Course  Trackin Trucks: Ben Rhodes Wins at Daytona Road Course Reviewed by Courtney Horn on Saturday, February 20, 2021 Rating: 5