Ben Kennedy NCWTS Preview: Kansas Speedway
There's No Place Like Kansas...The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series returns to action after a six-week hiatus for the SFP 250 at Kansas Speedway on Friday, May 9. Ben Kennedy will make his first start at the 1.5-mile D-shaped oval, which will be only his third start on an intermediate circuit. Turner Scott Motorsports (TSM) is no stranger to speed at Kansas Speedway. The No. 31 team scored its very first victory at the track in 2012 with James Buescher behind the wheel. In 2013, the team's three entries started 1-2-3 [Buescher, Miguel Paludo, Jeb Burton], earning a top finish of sixth in the event.
May is ALS Awareness Month...This weekend at Kansas Speedway, Kennedy's No. 31 Chevrolet Silverado will once again be carrying the colors of the ALS Association. Friday's race in Kansas falls during the National ALS Advocacy Day and Public Policy Conference, which runs from May 7-9 in Washington, D.C. ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease, is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects neurons (nerve cells) in the brain and the spinal cord. Eventually, people with ALS lose the ability to initiate and control muscle movement, which often leads to total paralysis and death within two to five years of diagnosis. For unknown reasons, veterans are approximately twice as likely to get ALS. There is no cure and no life-prolonging treatments for the disease.
The ALS Association is the only national non-profit organization fighting Lou Gehrig's Disease on every front. By leading the way in global research, providing assistance for people with ALS through a nationwide network of chapters, coordinating multidisciplinary care through certified clinical care centers, and fostering government partnerships, the ALS Association builds hope and enhances quality of life while aggressively searching for new treatments and a cure. For more information, visit ALSA.org.
A True Humanitarian...Riding along with Kennedy above the right-side door this weekend is Kansas City native and winner of the 2013 Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award, Don Post. Diagnosed with ALS in 1980, Post was told he had only three to five years to live. With the news, Don retired from his professional career to dedicate himself to charity work in his final years. Defying the life expectancy given to him, for the past 34 years Post has dedicated his life and energy to helping others. Donating his time to many Kansas City charities, Post's love of children has made March of Dimes Bikers For Babies his primary focus. Through heat, cold, and rain, Post has been a volunteer for the past 18 years and Committee Chairman since 2010. Post's leadership has been instrumental in making Kansas City's Bikers For Babies ride the biggest in the United States, raising nearly $7,000,000 to help premature babies.
Pomp and Circumstance...On Saturday, May 3, Kennedy reached a major milestone, graduating from the University of Florida. Kennedy earned his diploma in Sports Management with a minor in Business.
Previous Race Recap...Kennedy posted an impressive third-place finish at Martinsville Speedway, bettering his career-best finish of fourth in his strong Martinsville debut last fall. Through three yellow flags in the closing laps and two attempts at a green/white/checkered finish, Kennedy narrowly avoided the melee that erupted in front of him and skillfully navigated his No. 31 Silverado around his competitors, scoring a much-earned third-place finish and Sunoco Rookie of the Race honors.
This Week's Silverado...Kennedy and the No. 31 ALS Association Silverado crew will utilize chassis TSM-603 this weekend at Kansas Speedway. TSM-603 was raced by Buescher at Chicagoland Speedway and Homestead-Miami Speedway in 2013, earning a best finish of eighth.
Watch and Listen...The SFP 250 can be seen live on Friday, May 9 on FOX Sports 1. Race coverage will begin at 8:00 p.m. EDT, and the event can also be heard live on MRN Radio as well as SiriusXM Radio, channel 90.
Ben Kennedy on Kansas Speedway:
"Kansas is a track I've never raced at before, but I feel really confident after our test at Charlotte a few weeks ago. TSM is known for its intermediate track program, and they were really good at this track last year, so I have no doubt that we can perform well this year. We've had a strong start to the season so far, and it would mean a lot to me to bring the ALS Association Chevrolet to victory lane this week: Don Post, whose name is on the right-side door of the truck, is going to be at the race. It would be really amazing to bring home a win for him and everyone with the Keith Worthington Chapter of the ALS Association."