I’m involved in marketing the racing career of Ben Rhodes, a phenomenal 14-year-old freshman at Holy Cross High School, who aspires to a career as a professional race driver. Wouldn’t it be something to see someone from Louisville among the top drivers in the world? Ben certainly has an opportunity to get there.
Take a look at the latest news from the Rhodes camp. If you’d like to support Ben’s quest in 2012, please get in touch with me at Rick@LouisvilleKY.com.
LOUISVILLE, KY (November 16th, 2011) – 14-year-old Kentucky native Ben Rhodes has signed with Marcos Ambrose Motorsport to drive the number 9 Late Model in the 2012 racing season, contending for the title in the UARA-Stars Late Model Stock series. The car will be maintained by Jamie Yelton’s Fat Head Racing with legendary NASCAR crew member Lee McCall serving as Crew Chief for Rhodes.
“I am looking forward to driving for Marcos Ambrose Motorsport,” said Rhodes. “It has been an honor getting to know Marcos this season, and I cannot wait until I drive for his team full time next year.”
Rhodes competed in the Young Lions division of Legends Car racing during the 2011 racing season, earning 43 victories, more than any of the 1200 Legends Car drivers in the country. In May, Rhodes got behind the wheel of a Late Model for the first time in a test session at the famed Hickory Motor Speedway (NC) with Fat Head Racing. That test caught the attention of NASCAR driver Marcos Ambrose, who attended Rhodes’ second test session in June.
“Marcos has years of experience in motorsports, and having him attend my second test in a Late Model was very educational,” explained Rhodes. “He was able to give me great feedback and helped get me up to speed mentally during the test.”
Marcos Ambrose Motorsport fielded a car for George Miedecke in the UARA Stars Series during the 2011 season. Rhodes will take over the reins of the ride, competing for the championship in 2012.
“I am really thrilled to have Ben on board next year behind the number 9 Marcos Ambrose Motorsport car,” said Ambrose. “He’s young, but also smart, talented and driven and I look forward to working with him to use those qualities in furthering his racing career. We had a solid first season in UARA Stars with George Miedecke finishing second in the series and I’m confident that Ben will continue that success.”
Rhodes competed in his first Late Model Stock event in July with Fat Head Racing with McCall as his crew chief. In his first four starts, Rhodes earned three top-10 finishes, including two fourth-place finishes at Hickory Motor Speedway. Rhodes will enter the 2012 season with the same crew he has worked with this season, changing from his usual car number of 4 to 9, the number used by Marcos Ambrose Motorsport.
“Jamie Yelton, Lee McCall and the team will be the same that I have been used to this year in my Late Model starts,” said Rhodes. “Even though I have been using the number 4 during my racing career to date, I am excited to start a new chapter in the Marcos Ambrose Motorsport number 9 machine.”
Besides racing the full UARA Stars schedule in 2012, Rhodes will also compete in other Late Model events during the season.
“We raced with UARA this year at Newport,” explained Rhodes. “We really like the series and how they run things there. We are looking forward to supporting their series for the entire schedule in 2012 and race at other events during the year so I can continue to grow as a racer.”
This weekend, Rhodes will compete in the SouthEast Limited Late Model Series portion of the Myrtle Beach 400 weekend at Myrtle Beach Speedway (SC) on Sunday, November 20th. Afterwards, his focus will shift to testing during the off-season to prepare for 2012.