John Benson Sr's
the links above
Johnny Benson Fan Club was developed in 1993 by Johnny's
sister, Barb Benson. This fan club is privately owned
and operated by Johnny Benson Enterprises.
In 1993, Johnny was competing in the American Speed
Association Series and was a strong contender for the
championship. At that time, Barb was responsible for
sending race reports to the #21 sponsors. At the
urging of Chris Bradley (Johnny's crew chief), Barb
developed the JBFC to communicate to Johnny Benson Fans.
At the end of the 1993 season, we had 200 fans!
As you can imagine, when Johnny moved up to the BGN and
Winston Cup ranks the fan club grew by leaps and bounds over
In order to keep up with technology and instant and
ever changing communication to the fans, the JBFC website
was created in 1998. Message Boards are
now the norm.
Other Stories of Interest:
She's the Fan Club President
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Benson was born on June 27, 1963 in Grand Rapids, Michigan
to his parents, John and Judy Benson. His racing career
began in 1982 on the dirt tracks in Michigan and is currently
competing in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series.
in Cornelius, North Carolina with his wife Debbie and children
Katelyn and Mikayla. Johnny credits his success to
the support of his family.
Johnny's Racing History:
Johnny competed in 274 races in the Nextel / Winston Cup
Series over a period of 11 years.
Top 5: 18
Led: 520 laps
Top 10: 58
Average Start: 23.2
Average Finish: 21.0
Johnny competed in 91 races in the Busch Series over a
period of 10 years. He competed in the Busch series for
two full seasons. He was the Rookie of the Year in
1994 and the BUSCH Champion in 1995.
Top 5: 19
Led: 744 laps
Top 10: 35
Average Start: 19.0
Average Finish: 17.5
Johnny competed in 138 races in the Craftsman Truck Series
over a period of 10 years.
Wins: 14 Laps:
Top 5: 58
Led: 1,360 laps
Top 10: 90
Average Start: 11.5
Average Finish: 10.7
You can find Johnny
statistics along with other drivers at
Benson drove Danny Gill’s No. 95 Plane Guts Ford to an
eighth place finish in the NextEra Energy Resources 250 at
Daytona. He scored fifth place finishes in Billy Ballew’s
No. 15 Red Top Collector Car Auction Toyota at Martinsville
and Kansas followed by a tenth place finish at Dover. He
wheeled Kyle Busch’s No. 18 Toyota to a tenth place finish
in the Winstar World Casino 400k at Texas. In five starts,
he recorded two top five and five top ten finishes.
Benson's and Their Supers
Photo By: J.Feeney
Photo By: T. Devette
crowned the champion in 2008, Benson had no sponsor or
fulltime ride for the 2009 NASCAR season. He made eight
starts in the Truck Series driving Tom DeLoach’s No. 1 K&N
Filters/Red Horse Racing No. 1 Toyota recording three top
five and four top ten finishes.
One Fast Car
(Photo Credit: Marc Serota/Getty Images
competed solely in the Craftsman Truck
Series in 2008. He qualified on the pole
for the Ohio 250 at Mansfield, then he
took the pole and the win in the Camping
World Sales 250 at Milwaukee. He qualified
on the pole for the O’Reilly 200 at
Memphis and then won three races in a row
– the Built Ford Tough 225 Presented by
Greater Cincinnati Ford Dealers at
Kentucky Speedway, the Power Stroke Diesel
200 Presented by AAA Hoosier Insurance at
Indianapolis Raceway Park, and the Toyota
Tundra 200 at Nashville. Another pole came
at the Camping World RV Rental 200 Driven
by Winnebago Industries at New Hampshire
followed by another win in the Kroger 200
at Martinsville. His final pole of the
year came in qualifying for the E-Z-Go 200
at Atlanta. Benson ended the season with
three poles, five wins, 14 top five and 18
top ten finishes. For his performance,
Benson was awarded the NASCAR Craftsman
Truck Series Championship in 2008.
November 14, 2008
October 18, 2008
August 9, 2008
July 25, 2008
July 19, 2008
June 20, 2008
2008 Team Page
Just as the 2007 season was
starting with the testing in Daytona, Johnny's crew
chief made the decision to move on to another team.
The good news is that Trip Bruce joined the #23 Bill Davis
Racing team and did not miss a step as he stepped into the
crew chief role. As time wore on throughout the
season, Johnny and Trip showed everyone that they would be a
contender for the wins.
The first win of 2007 came at Milwaukee when Johnny crossed
the finish line as a repeat winner. He went on to
claim victories at Bristol, Gateway and the last race of the
season on Miami.
Gail Davis - Debbie and Johnny
June 22, 2007
August 22, 2007
September 1, 2007
November 16, 2007
competed in the Nextel Cup Series for 3 races. He
qualified and drove for #46 Wyler Racing at Richmond in May
and for Bill Davis Racing #36 in the Phoenix and Miami
beginning of the year, Johnny and crew chief, Rick Ren set
their sights on the Craftsman Truck Championship. The
#23 Bill Davis Racing team worked hard to give Johnny the
equipment he needed.
Johnny's first Craftsman Truck Series win came at his home
track - Michigan International Speedway during the Father's
Day weekend in June. This win gave Johnny and his team
the momentum to go on and win four additional races.
championship came down between Johnny and Todd Bodine at the
last race in Miami. Bodine's consistency paid off and
Johnny had to settle for 2nd in the series standings.
point of the season was setting a new track record at
Phoenix International Speedway in November and earning the
"Most Popular Driver Award" as voted on by the media and his
peers. Johnny ended the season with 13 top
fives, 17 top ten finishes and lead a total of 315 laps. .
Gail Davis, Rick Ren,
Johnny and Bill Davis
June 17, 2006
Johnny and John Sr.
June 17, 2006
Johnny and the #23 team in victory lane
June 23, 2006
Johnny and the guitar
August 12, 2006
Johnny Wins at
September 16, 2006
The 5th win of 2006
November 10, 2006
Toyota 2006 Win Ads
In January, Bill Davis announce that
Johnny would be back behind the wheel of the #23 Toyota
Tundra under the direction of crew chief, Greg Ely.
The team struggle through the first part of the season
suffering mishaps with equipment and personnel. A mid
season crew chief change and new trucks in the fall made all
the difference to propel Johnny to several top five
finishes. This gained him enough points to slip back
into the top ten in points at Miami. Johnny competed
in several Cup races for Bill Davis Racing.
The year began and Johnny did not have
finalized plans for a ride. During the middle part of
January, he received a call from James Finch - owner of
Phoenix Racing to drive his #09 Dodge in selected races.
As of Daytona, they have agreed to compete in 12 Nextel Cup
races. James Finch also offered a full time BGN
ride to Johnny, when he decided to make a driver change in
the #1 Yellow Transportation Dodge. Johnny accepted
his offer. Johnny worked with crew chiefs Jon
Wolfe and Marc Reno. After 4 top ten finishes, the
union of Johnny and the Phoenix Racing Team dissolved.
In June, Johnny got behind of
the wheel of the #17 Bayer Ford for Matt Kenseth and John
Reiser for a race in Kentucky. Johnny was running 4th
in the closing laps of the race, when a blown tire forced
him into the wall
During the summer months, Johnny
got behind the microphone as a race analyst for the
BGN and Truck Races. He joined Rick Allen and Phil
Parsons in the booth for the Milwaukee, Kansas and Kentucky
A call from Bill Davis put Johnny behind the wheel of the
#23 Toyota Tundra under the direction of crew chief, Greg
Ely. In just 13 races, they had five - top 5 finishes
and eight top ten finishes.
Season In Review - 2004 was a season
of transition for Johnny Benson. Based on how his season
ended, one has to conclude that it was successful. Nobody,
however, thought it would unfold the way it did.
Johnny, James Ince
and the entire Valvoline Racing team had high expectations
for 2003 in hopes of making the top ten in points and more
wins. With a new 2003 Pontiac to work with and a
new team mate, they felt that good things would happen in
2003. Unfortunately, things did not go the way they
John Sr. and Johnny
The new Pontiac presented more
of a challenge, his team mate was seriously hurt at
Richmond, James Ince left the team at the end of September
and Johnny notified in October that they were replacing him
as the driver for the 2004 season - with one year left on
Johnny completed the 2003 season 24th in drivers points
along with 2 - top 5 finishes and 4 - top
pieces of a competitive team were in place for the Valvoline
Racing team under the direction of Johnny and crew chief,
and the #10 Valvoline Pontiac
injuries sidelined Johnny in May after an injury he
sustained at Richmond while driving the #31 BGN car.
After sitting out several races, Johnny was ready for
competition. While running 6th in the Pepsi 400,
Johnny was tapped from behind to sustain another injury.
He again sat on the sidelines. The team fell back into
rhythm towards the fall races with Johnny competing for the
lead. A second place finish at Martinsville set the
tone for Johnny's first Winston Cup win at Rockingham in the
Pop Secret 400 on November 3, 2002. It was a great day
for all Johnny Benson Fans!
Photo gallery of JB's
the 2002 season 29th in drivers points after competing in 31
of the 36 events. The team finished 21st in owners
points. Johnny had 1 win, 3 top 5 finishes and 7 top
to Cayuga, Canada to compete in a CASCAR race. While
he was there, he jumped into a supermodified.
Photos courtesy of Dan
This season held a lot of promise
as Johnny began the year as the driver of the MBV Motorsports
team sponsored and owned by Valvoline. James Ince returned
as crew chief. The #10 moved into a new shop that is closer
to teammate Ken Schrader's #36 team. The future is looking
bright for both drivers.
Johnny ended the 2001 season 11th in the Winston Cup Point
Standings. He had 6 top five finishes and 14 top ten
finishes. Other highlights include the winning the
pole and the win for the Winston Open race.
his team after winning
the pole for the Winston Open
after his win at the Winston Open
Johnny and his coupe
Signed on with Tim Beverley and the
Tyler Jet Motorsports team driving the #10 Pontiac Grand
Prix. James Ince - crew chief. Lycos began to sponsor the
car in February, but by July the decals came off as the
sponsorship did not work out.
July, the #10 team was bought out by MB2 Motorsports. Aarons
Rent came on board starting with the Indy race and through
the rest of the season.
August, during the MIS weekend history is made as
announces they will become part owner of the MB2 Motorsports.
The new team will be called MBV Motorsports. Valvoline will
be the sponsor. Johnny will continue to be the driver and
James Ince will be the crew chief. They have both signed
contracts for 2 years.
The unveiling at Michigan
Johnny finished the 2000 season 13th in the Winston Cup Point
Standings. He had 3 top five finishes and 7 top ten
The performance of the Johnny and
the #26 team did not meet expectations in 1999. Crew Chiefs:
Bobby Leslie, Pat Tryson and Tommy Morgan tried to turn
the #26 program around. One top 5 finish was a bright spot
in a rather dismal season. Finished 28th in points. Johnny
was granted a release from his contract from Jack Roush.
Began the season with high hopes driving
the #26 Ford Taurus. Earned three top-five and 10 top 10
finishes during his first season with Roush Racing. Cheerios
/ General Mills was the sponsor. Steve Hmiel began the season
as the crew chief and was replaced in August by Ben Leslie.
Finished 20th in points.
Finished 11th in NASCAR Winston Cup
Series point standings, just one point out of the top 10.
Won pole position at DeVilbliss 400 at Michigan Speedway
in August. Claimed eight top 10 finishes and accumulated
$1,120,814 in winnings. In September, Roush Racing announced
that Benson would join its five-car Winston Cup Series effort.
Started his Winston Cup career with
owner Chuck Rider and the Bahari Racing team. Drove the
#30 Pontiac Grand Prix. Doug Hewitt - crew chief. Pennzoil
sponsored the car. Won 1996 Winston Cup Rookie of the Year
award. Earned pole position at Atlanta Motor Speedway in
only his fourth start just after the birth of his first
child. Led 70 laps in the 1996 Brickyard 400, the most of
any driver. Finished 21st in points.
Continued with BACE Motorsports who
brought on sponsorship from Lipton Tea. Won NASCAR Busch
Series Grand National Division Championship by 404 points
over Chad Little. Won Busch Light 300 at Atlanta Motor Speedway
and the Sun-Drop 400 at Hickory Speedway. Recorded 12 top
five finishes and completed 96 percent of all laps during
Remember When - 1995
This was the first full season with
BACE Motorsports and owner Bill Baumgardner. Steve Bird
was his crew chief and Staff America was the sponsor. Johnny
drove the #74 Chevrolet Monte Carlo. Won NASCAR Busch Series
Grand National Division Rookie of the Year. Finished sixth
in Busch Series Championship points. Won his first BGN race
at Dover Downs International Speedway in the Split Fire
Spark Plug 200. It was Benson's 29th career start in the
BGN Series and the first time a rookie in the series won
his first race on a Superspeedway.
When - 1994
Won the American Speed Association
Championship by capturing five victories and 10 pole positions,
including seven track records and a series records six consecutive
poles. Johnny's win came at Columbus, Nashville, Calgary,
Minnesota and Toledo. Set an ASA record in season earnings
at $194,735. Berger Chevrolet and Port City Racing were
the major sponsors.
just four years of ASA competition, Johnny compiled the
following statistics: Competed in 72 events. Completed 90%
of laps - 19,172 of 21,289 laps. Led a total of 3,244 laps.
Earned 9 victories and 20 pole positions. Had 37 top five
finishes and 48 top ten finishes.
first BGN event at Michigan International Speedway in August
in the #41 sponsored by Delco Remy owned by Ernie Irvan.
In September, BACE Motorsports hired Benson to drive on
the BGN circuit in 1994. Johnny and Debbie moved to North
ASA ownership transferred to
Benson-Harris Racing. Chris Bradley was the crew chief.
Finished 2 points behind Mike Eddy is the closest points
race in ASA history.
in 17 events. Completed 91% of laps - 4,410 of 4,822 laps.
Led a total of 927 laps. Won four ASA events and seven pole
positions. Johnny's wins came at Columbus, Milwaukee, Berlin
and Auto City. Earned 11 top five finishes and 14 top ten
Nashville Network (TNN) invaded the ASA scene and started
to produce and televise live ASA racing.
Throop Motorsports separated the shop
and Johnny's team moved to Benson Speed Equipment. Chip
Caputo - crew chief. Finished fourth in the ASA Championship
points race. Had 10 top five finishes and 14 top ten finishes
and earned two pole positions. Led a total of 520 laps and
completed 92% of total laps.
Throop Motorsports signed Johnny to
drive in ASA series and gained Bob Senneker as a teammate.
Dave Taylor - crew chief. Johnny was able to retain his
favorite number - #21 and drove a Chevrolet Lumina. The
ASA series traveled from one end of the USA to another including
Calgary Alberta, Canada.
the ASA Rookie of the Year and finished eight in ASA championship
points. Had 5 top five finishes and 8 top ten finishes and
earned one pole position. Led a total of 174 laps and completed
85% of total laps.
also competed in his late model car competing 23 time. He
took the pole position 16 times and earned 6 victories.
There were 17 top five finishes and 21 top ten finishes.
Started his asphalt
career at Berlin Raceway where his father won seven track
championships. In 1989, Johnny continued that tradition
by winning the Late Model Championship at Berlin Raceway.
Johnny set a track record by winning 10 of 15 events. Johnny
also entered events at Kalamazoo, Columbus and Sandusky
just seven years of competition spanning from the 1982 -
1989 seasons, Johnny compiled the following statistics:
Qualifications: 44 Fast Times - 3 track records. Won 33
heat races. Won 23 Feature races with 65 top five finishes
and 84 top ten finishes.
first asphalt Late Model
John Sr., retired from
competition in 1981 making way for Johnny to begin his racing
career on dirt. He started out at Thunderbird Speedway by
winning rookie of the year in 1982. Johnny kept tradition
by using his dad's number - #21. The name of the team was
Aesculapian Enterprises under the direction of John Sr.
and Richard Harris. During his dirt racing career Johnny
competed at Thunderbird, I-96 (Ionia), Crystal, Butler,
Martin, Auto City, Hartford and Eldora Speedways.
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Benson Sr. began his racing career in 1956 and retired at
the end of the season in 1980. His racing contributions
have been a significant factor in the growth and success of
racing in the West Michigan area. In a span of thirty
years, John Sr. began his racing career at the Speedrome in
Comstock Park and retired while competing at Berlin
Raceway. Although there were several offers for him to move
on to the big leagues through the years, he made the
decision to stay in West Michigan.
John Sr., traveled throughout the Midwest competing at the
following tracks: Grand Rapids Speedrome; Comstock Park,
Berlin Raceway, MI; Oswego, New York; Sandusky, Ohio;
Lorain Country, Ohio; Illiana, IN; Baer Field, IN, Queen
City, OH, Auburn, MI; Jackson, MI; Kalamazoo, MI; New
Bremen, IN; Hartford, MI; Heidelberg, PA; Sharon, OH;
Winchester, IN; Salem, IN; Owosso, MI.
Won the 1966 Oswego Classic
Won seven track championships at Berlin Raceway – 1971,
1972, 1973, 1974, 1976, 1977 and 1978
Competed at Michigan International Speedway in one Winston
Cup Race in 1973 at the age of 36. Started 36th -
over 191 main events and over 243 heat races
Created Benson Speed Equipment – developing parts for the
race team for Johnny Benson during his dirt, asphalt and
ASA years from
1981 – 1993
Inducted into the
Michigan Motorsports Hall of Fame
Continued involvement in racing at Berlin - owns race team
Continued involvement in Johnny Benson’s career – is the
support spotter on race day in Winston Cup Racing
Inducted into the Grand Rapids Sports Hall of Fame in 2001
into the Berlin Raceway Hall of Fame
John Sr. and Judy Benson
- Daytona - 2002
Stories of Interest
The Photo Gallery
1980 - Berlin Raceway
1979 - Victory Lane at
1979 - Supermodified -
1978 - Johnny behind the
wheel of "Dad's" car
1978 - The Crew at Berlin
Ron Piechocki, Dr. Harris, Johnny, John Sr., Howard Bradley,
and Russ Hoekwater
1975 - Victory Lane
Johnny and John Sr.
1973 - A Ride at MIS
Started 36th - Finished 21st
1973 - Berlin Track
John Sr., Chet Mysliwiec and Jack Drolema
1971 - In Victory Lane at
1971 - Victory Lane
Jimmy Meyers, John Sr, Dr. Richard Harris
and Chuck Mysliwiec
1969 - A win at Berlin
1966 - A win at Berlin
1965 - Speedrome
1962 - Stock Car at the
A Victory at the
1958 - Speedrome
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