Hot temperatures scolded the track at Montgomery Motor Speedway for the Show Me the Money Series, round three, this past weekend. The heat was on as upstart late model driver Kyle Benjamin led the field to the green after winning the pole. Benjamin looked to be the driver to reap the rewards of an absent Augie Grill, who was attending a wedding and was not in this race. Eight caution periods, and a series of wacky restarts kept the field tight, and ultimately proved to be the key for Jason Young to emerge victorious, winning the second SMTM race of his career.
Young had a fast car all day, and found himself battling side by side with Benjamin for the lead by Lap 19. Young took the lead coming out of turn one, but had to give the spot back after race officials deemed that Young had jumped the start. He fell back, and Benjamin broke out to a 1.164 second lead before the caution fell and once again bunched up the field. After retaking the lead on the ensuing restart at Lap 33, Young didn’t look back, leading the final 67 laps of the race in route to his victory. This was Young’s second win in the Show Me the Money Series, his first coming in the series premiere back in 2009.
“We had a really good car,” said Young. “The car was good in practice, we worked really hard to get the car to roll through the center of the corner; really worked on it from the last couple of races we came to here. It’s one of the better cars we’ve had here since they paved the track.
I just tried to be patient, be there at the end. It was a battle of attrition but I had a really good car. I could run the pace that I wanted to run, stretch out to a five or 10 car-length lead and then just run my pace. We jumped the start one time, we gave the spot back, and then on the next restart they said to let him fire first so he fired first and we were able to get him in the next corner and I’m not really sure what happened to his car but he fell off I guess, and we had a really good night.”
Kyle Benjamin fell off because of a tire issue, but up until that point, looked to have the car to beat, setting the race’s fastest laps and opening up large gaps on second place. Restarts, however, proved to be an interesting challenge for the young racer. Chris Serio jumped him on the restart at lap 15. Two restarts later, Benjamin nearly caused a pile up on at the start/finish line when he didn’t go. Somehow the field avoided disaster and split Benjamin as the caution flew. On the next restart, Young jumped and had to fall back, allowing Benjamin to race out to 1.164 second lead. The up and down night ended up seeing Benjamin fall nine laps to the leader, thanks to the tire issue.
“We had a right rear tire going down,” said Benjamin. “I don’t know what the cause was or if run over something. I could feel it before we went green and then went into that last corner and was like there is no way I am driving this thing. I had to come in and get a new tire. We come back out are were eight laps down; couldn’t do anything about it.”
Point leader Hunter Robbins struggled all night. He found himself on pit road early and often trying to troubleshoot electrical gremlins. Those issues led to Robbins dropping out of the event after 40 laps and with Young’s win, his points lead is only six over Young.
“We really don’t know what the problem was,” said Robbins. “Some kind of ignition issue. We searched and searched but couldn’t find it. We’ll figure it out and be ready for Pensacola next week.”
That race is the Allen Turner Sonata 100, round two of the Allen Turner Pro Late Model Series. Robbins won the opener there in late April and also leads the points in that series. At Montgomery, the next Show Me the Money 100 lapper is scheduled for
July 16, 2011.
Show Me the Money 100
1.27 - Jason Young 2.10 - Bill Bethea, III 3.7 - Justin Caton 4.40 - Tyler Miles 5.88 - Roger Reuse 6.89 - Bobby Reuse 7.33 - Blake Ferguson 8.43 - Justin South 9.71 - Kyle Benjamin 10.3 - Chris Serio 11.93 - Kyle Sirizzotti 12.4 - Chase Knox 13.18 - Hunter Robbins 14.30 - Bobby Knox Jr. 15.64 - David Jones 16.30 - Brandon Hall 17.4Jr. - Tommy Williams