Late-Race Incident Relegates Rhodes to a 27th-Place Finish

SPARTA, Ky. (September 20, 2014) - In his second-career ARCA Racing Series start, and first race at Kentucky Speedway, Ben Rhodes and the No. 41 Alpha Energy Solutions team showed early speed. After laying down the sixth-quickest lap in the day's only practice session, the 17-year-old qualified 5th for the ZLoop 150. Rhodes ran strong during the 100-lap race, but unfortunately brought home a 27th-place result after getting involved in a late-race incident while charging to the lead.

As the race began, Rhodes quickly moved through the top five, settling into the second position by lap 15. The first caution of the race fell on lap 18, and crew chief Mark McFarland brought the No. 41 Chevrolet to pit road to the attention of the Alpa Energy Solutions crew. McFarland called for four tires and fuel while some competitors stayed out on the racetrack. When the race resumed, Rhodes restarted in the 13th position. By lap 30, the NASCAR Next driver was already back into the top 10, running eighth. Rhodes continued to quickly move through the field, racing up to third by lap 40. On lap 47, Rhodes took the race lead as the caution flew for the second time on the night. Under the caution, McFarland elected for a fuel-only stop, maintaining the race lead for Rhodes for the restart. Rhodes remained out front for the next 25 circuits, putting a strong gap between himself and those looking to run him down. An untimely caution in the race's closing laps set up some late-race strategy decisions. McFarland decided to bring Rhodes back down pit road for four tires and fuel. When the race resumed, Rhodes made quick work of the competitors around him, moving into the top 10 within one lap. Rhodes continued moving forward and held strong inside the top five by lap 82. While battling for the third position on lap 86, Rhodes got caught up in an on-track incident. The ensuing damage sent the young driver to the garage, ending his night early and relegating him to a 27th-place finish.

Ben Rhodes on his evening at Kentucky:

"What an experience to finally race at Kentucky Speedway. I've been looking forward to this night for a long time and to finally get on track and lead laps in the fashion that we did was a great feeling for me personally. We had one of the strongest cars all night long, but unfortunately we got caught up in a racing incident. I hate it for Turner Scott Motorsports, Alpha Energy Solutions and all the guys who have worked so hard on this No. 41 Chevrolet since Tuesday for the open test. They gave me a great racecar to go out and race hard at my home racetrack. I also want to thank all the fans that came out to support us this weekend at Kentucky; the amount of support we received throughout the weekend was amazing, and I really can't thank the fans enough. While we didn't get the end result we were looking for tonight, I did gain a ton of experience for racing on 1.5-mile racetracks and I look forward to racing here again soon."