San Antonio, TX.,(Sept 25th, 2015) Looking for a semi-local driver to cheer on in the IHRA Pro classes this weekend? Let me introduce Scott Benham(Magnolia), or ‘Sweet’ to his Jersey friends, who dives into the IHRA Pro Stock world with both feet. Making only his second attempt, Benham realizes he’s up against some stiff competition.
“We plan on surprising them,” said Benham. “I’ve raced most of my life underfunded and on a budget. That hasn’t stopped us from winning in the past. We do realize this is a new level of competition and I have the utmost respect for them all.”
“We have several goals. First is qualifying. You can’t win if you’re not in.”
The 50-year old, second generation driver does come into the Pro Stock with some impressive credentials. Since beginning his racing at age 18, Benham has competed in Super Street, Super Stock, Modified Eliminator and Competition Eliminator before moving to Pro Stock.
His trophy case includes three Competition Eliminator championships, in two divisions and a Division 4, 25K to win bonus race, plus winning the only two races in IHRA Modified Eliminator he’s ever entered, one here in San Antonio. He lists Texas Motorplex(Ennis) as his favorite track after winning two races in the same weekend, plus a national event.
Benham, who owns Race Engine Development in Conroe, also comes from a good racing background with his father, Crawford Benham, a former US Nationals Champion in Modified Eliminator. His son, Chris, continues the family racing tradition taking two different Outlaw 330 Jr. Dragster series championships, the same year, in two divisions.
Previous to beginning his own Pro Stock career, Benham helped defending IHRA Pro Stock Champ, Cary Goforth, who he now races against to two titles, as well as Mark Martino on the NHRA Pro Stock side.
“I’m new as an IHRA Pro Stock driver, but come in with a lot of experience.” Benham continued. “We build our own motors and tune our own cars. We’re kind of old school like Bob Glidden and Rickie Smith. I’ve raced with Rodger Brogden, Richard Freeman and Chris McGaha in Competition Eliminator. It’s good to see them them having some success at the level they’re competing at.”
“Long time friend Richard Otwell funds the car, without him we couldn’t do this, that’s where ‘Team O’ comes from. We’ve always had the tradition of not putting a drivers name above the door, just ‘Team O.’ We believe that it’s a team effort and the driver is just one part of it. The team is 100% volunteers, all have day jobs and a strong passion for racing.”
Car Owner/Sponsor; Richard Otwell
Crew; Jeff Owen, Tim Ortiz, Chris Vang, Rick McConathy, Chris Benham