DOVER, Del. – official release — Ben Kennedy Racing photo — Kenzie Ruston overcame a twenty-fifth starting position and an ill handling racecar to finish fourteenth in the Drive Sober 150, presented by the Delaware Office of Highway Safety.
With the fourteenth place finish, Ruston concluded the 2014 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East season ninth in the point standings.
“With the rain on Thursday we lost a lot of practice time,” said Ruston. “We got the car extremely comfortable for the race, and I thought we would be in pretty good shape. It was surprising how loose we were when they dropped the Green Flag.”
Ruston battled an “extremely loose” Delaware Office of Highway Safety Chevrolet, as she described it to the team in the early laps of the Drive Sober 150. Ruston, like many of her competitors, went a lap down to early race leader Cameron Hayley. The first caution flag of the race came on Lap 53, providing the first opportunity for the Ben Kennedy Racing Team to make adjustments to the car.
“We just started out way to free,” said crew chief Mike Fritts. “We came in and made a big swing at it. Being trapped a lap down at that point it was a good time to try something before the halfway break.”
The changes helped Ruston significantly, and at the halfway break, the team provided some additional changes.
In the second half of the Drive Sober 150, Ruston moved from twenty fourth position to battling inside the top-15, running times as fast as those in the top-10. Ruston remained trapped a lap down as cautions were few in the Drive Sober 150.
“It was a disappointing way to finish the season for sure,” said Ruston. “These guys never gave up on me all season and they didn’t give up on me today. We got the car driving a lot better for the second half, but we just didn’t have enough cautions to get a lucky dog and try to battle for the top-10.”
“It was an honor to represent the Delaware Office of Highway Safety and the “Drive Sober” program,” said Ruston. “The Delaware Office of Highway Safety puts a big emphasis on both race weekends here at Dover, and they are great title sponsor of the K&N race. I had a lot of fun before the race meeting with the fans at the display, and helping them take the Sober Driving Pledge.”