June 17th, 2017

Rhodes earns fourth straight top ten finish at Gateway

Jeff Woods 

Staff Writer 

Rhodes earns fourth straight top ten finish at Gateway
file photo

Ben Rhodes continues to shine as a model of consistency in the Camping World Truck Series. The Louisville native finished eighth Saturday night in the Drivin’ for Lineman 200 at Gateway Motorsports Park, his fourth consecutive top ten finish. 

“I’d say it was a tough night for our Safelite Tundra team,” said Rhodes. “We had a very fast truck in the second segment, but track position was key tonight. We actually had a few issues that we had to overcome. The way the truck sits on the ground wasn’t right. It changed drastically in the race. It started bouncing and handling weird and we also had some brake issues. With all that adversity, we were able to pull through and get an eighth-place finish which I think is OK. We certainly didn’t have the speed that we needed even when we unloaded this weekend.”

The Holy Cross graduate started the race in 12th and moved up to tenth by lap 35. During routine pits stops, however, Rhodes had to make a second stop to check on his brakes and dropped back to 17th. It took him just 15 laps to charge back into the top ten.

“We thought the brake calipers were sticking,” said Rhodes. “For the most part, they (brake problems) went away after they worked on the truck on that second stop. I still didn’t have the stopping power that I wanted or needed during the rest of the race, but it wasn’t as big of a factor and I was able to overcome it.”

Rhodes has now placed in the top ten in five of the eight CWTS races this season. To put that in perspective, Rhodes posted five top ten finishes total in 23 races just one year ago.

“Our worst races are races that we’re finishing eighth now instead of our worst races last year we were finishing 16th, 17th, and 18th,” said Rhodes. “There has been a huge turnaround and improvement for my Thorsport Racing team and we’re just getting better and better.”

Rhodes remains fifth in the CWTS points standings, 30 points behind fourth place Chase Briscoe. He returns to the track next Friday at Iowa Speedway.



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