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Benson cruises to fourth truck win of season

By TIMES WIRES
Published September 17, 2006


LOUDON, N.H. - Johnny Benson passed Kyle Busch an instant before a caution flag froze the field Saturday and never relinquished the top spot after doing so in the NASCAR Truck Series race at New Hampshire International Speedway.

It was the fourth victory of the season for Benson, who had not won a truck race before this year.

Nextel Cup star Busch, making only his fourth truck start of the season, took the lead on lap 121 on a pit stop during one of the 12 caution flags in the 200-lap race. He was battling to hold off Benson on lap 167 when Mike Bliss hit the wall. That brought out another yellow flag, and NASCAR's scoring showed Benson had the nose of his Bill Davis Racing Toyota just ahead of Busch's Chevrolet.

Benson, who led four times for 145 laps, pulled away on the ensuing restart and stayed in front as pole-winner Mike Skinner passed Busch to take second place, finishing 0.691 seconds - about six truck-lengths - behind.

Series points leader Todd Bodine finished fourth.

"The only way to catch Todd is to do what we did today," said Benson, in second place.

Benson gained 30 points on Bodine and trails by 124 with seven races remaining.

NHRA: Rain at the NHRA Nationals in Mohnton, Pa., forced officials to postpone the event until next weekend.

The parking lots would not be dry in time for racing today, said Graham Light, the sanctioning body's senior vice president of racing operations.