Ben Kennedy, driver of the No. 33 JACOB Companies Chevrolet, earned an 18th-place finish in the Texas Roadhouse 200 at Martinsville Speedway after contact with two competitors late in the race.
Kennedy started from the 18th position for the 200-lap event after a less than stellar qualifying effort but gained five positions on the initial green flag to start the event. Kennedy fell back to the 16th position before the first caution of the day on lap 51, when he reported to crew chief Joey Cohen that the truck was rolling the center good but struggling on entry. The Daytona Beach native pitted for four tires, fuel and a chassis adjustment and returned to the track in the 14th position for the lap 58 restart. Kennedy steadily worked his way through the field, reaching the top 10 by lap 98 just before the second caution of the day on lap 109. Once again, Cohen brought the No. 33 to pit road for four tires, fuel and a chassis adjustment. Kennedy restarted in 10th but fell back one position on the restart and stayed there until an incident on lap 177 sent him spinning. With minimal damage to the JACOB Companies Chevrolet, he returned to the track in the 19th position and fought to gain track position in the closing laps. A second incident with two laps to go prevented Kennedy from advancing past the 18th position, where he crossed the start-finish line.
Kennedy is sixth in the Chase standings, 10 points out of the last transfer spot, with two races remaining in the round of six.
BEN KENNEDY QUOTE:
"The JACOB Companies team worked so hard this weekend to get our truck in shape to have a clean weekend at Martinsville. Unfortunately it doesn’t take much to ruin a day at a track like this, especially in the middle of the Chase. I hate it for these guys. Joey (Cohen, crew chief) made awesome calls to get us moving in the right direction early on. Our handling was the best it had been all day and we had finally reached the top 10. I really think we could have turned it in to a top-five finish, if not better, by the end of the day. Thankfully GMS Racing has great trucks prepared for Texas and Phoenix, so we’ll get out there with the same drive and do our best to join Johnny (Sauter) in Miami.”
GMS Racing PR