Benson takes Sundrop after Little spins out

April 16, 1995|By Knight-Ridder News Service

HICKORY, N.C. -- Johnny Benson inherited the Sundrop 400 lead with 11 laps to go yesterday and afterward conceded that Chad Little deserved to win the rough, controversial NASCAR Grand National Series race at Hickory Motor Speedway.

Little was the leader on Lap 289 of the 300-lap race at the .363-mile track when he was tagged in Turn 3 by Kevin LePage, who was attempting to make up a lost lap. Little spun and slammed into the outer concrete wall, damaging his Ford so heavily he couldn't continue.

Benson, following in second place at the time, narrowly avoided severe damage, too, as he clipped one of the cars in the incident, denting the hood of his Chevy.

"This is awfully bad luck for Chad," said Benson, who scored his second victory this season and padded his lead toward the circuit's championship to 187 points over Little, second in the standings. "He had the race won.

1. (5) Johnny Benson, Chevrolet, 300, $16,805, 63.120 mph. 2. (3) Hermie Sadler, Chevrolet, 300, $9,580. 3. (8) Mike McLaughlin, -- Chevrolet, 300, $7,930. 4. (24) Jason Keller, Chevrolet, 300, $4,305. 5. (15) Bobby Dotter, Chevrolet, 300, $4,380. 6. (2) Dennis Setzer, Ford, 300, $4,745. 7. (20) Jeff Fuller, Chevrolet, 300, $3,795. 8. (4) Curtis Markham, Pontiac, 300, $4,395. 9. (19) Jim Bown, Chevrolet, 300, $2,995. 10. (14) Pete Silva, Chevrolet, 299, $2,595.

11. (25) Doug Heveron, Ford, 299, $2,895. 12. (6) Johnny Rumley, Chevrolet, 298, $3,520. 13. (7) Dirk Stephens, Chevrolet, 298, $2,845. 14. (29) Phil Parsons, Oldsmobile, 298, $2,820. 15. (13) Tim Fedewa, Ford, 298, $2,770. 16. (12) Mike Dillon, Chevrolet, 298, $2,095. 17. (11) Larry Pearson, Chevrolet, 298, $3,920. 18. (1) David Green, Chevrolet, 298, $5,445. 19. (30) Rodney Combs, Pontiac, 296, $2,620. 20. (10) Kevin LePage, Chevrolet, 296, $2,570.

21. (26) Jerry Nadeau, Ford, 291, $1,820. 22. (21) Randy Porter, Ford, 290, $1,795. 23. (17) Chad Little, Ford, 289, accident, $7,620. 24. (27) L.W. Miller, Ford, 286, $2,320. 25. (28) Patty Moise, Chevrolet, 276, $1,720. 26. (16) Elton Sawyer, Ford, 269, overheating, $3,570. 27. (9) Tracy Leslie, Chevrolet, 258, accident, $2,320. 28. (18) Robbie Reiser, Chevrolet, 237, $2,320. 29. (23) Jeff Green, Chevrolet, 97, overheating, $2,320. 30. (22) Scott Kilby, Chevrolet, 34, overheating, $1,720.

Time: 1:43:31. Margin of victory: 1.13 seconds. Caution flags: 13 for 50 laps. Lead changes: 8 among 5 drivers. Lap leaders: D. Green 1-11, Sadler 12-80, Rumley 81-106, Sadler 107-113, Benson 114-120, Little 121-250, Benson 251, Little 252-288, Benson 289-300. Series point leaders: 1. Benson, 1,289; 2. Little, 1,092; 3. Terry Labonte, 1,002; 4. Keller, 998; 5. Parsons, 982; 6. Pearson, 939; 7. Combs, 937; 8. Bown, 935; 9. McLaughlin, 905; 10. Fedewa, 881.

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