May 20th, 2016

Rhodes starting 12th at Charlotte

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Roy Walter

Assistant Editor


Rhodes starting 12th at Charlotte
“I think we’ll be just fine for the race,” Ben Rhodes said about this weekend’s Truck race, which was postponed until Saturday / photo by Ronda Greer / cover photo from ThorSport Racing’s Facebook page

Rain in North Carolina washed out all of Friday’s on-track activity at Charlotte Motor Speedway, so NASCAR officials moved this weekend’s Camping World Truck Series race to Saturday afternoon.

Because qualifying was cancelled, Ben Rhodes will be in the No. 12 position when the green flag drops to start the NC Education Lottery 200.

“I was pleasantly surprised with 12th place and I think we’ll be just fine for the race,” the 2015 graduate of Holy Cross High School said.

The 32-truck starting field was set by times posted in practice. If both practice sessions had been rained out Thursday, the starting lineup would have been set by points, which would have put Rhodes in the No. 18 spot. Only one of the two sessions was canceled.

“Anything better than 18th was a gain,” Rhodes noted. “Twelfth place was pretty good compared to how our mock run went. We really didn’t get up to speed like we wanted.”

The race was originally scheduled for 8:30 Friday night. Because NASCAR won’t allow changes to trucks before the race starts, teams might have them still set up for a night race instead of a day race.

But Rhodes said he and his ThorSport Racing crew anticipated rain might wreak havoc on the schedule.

“I feel good about it because we had this plan in our head based on the changes we made the day before for everything to happen,” he said. “So I feel just fine for the day race.”

In the practice session, Rhodes raced around the 1½-mile quad-oval in 29.791 seconds (181.263 mph) in his No. 41 USA Cares Toyota Tundra and will start from the outside of the sixth row. A total of 36 drivers made runs.

William Byron (29.321 seconds, 184.168 seconds) will be on the pole.

 

 

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