Photo: Justin R. Noe/ASP, Inc.

DiBenedetto, Go Fas Racing Optimistic of Restrictor Plate Success

By David Morgan, NASCAR Editor

TALLADEGA, Alabama – If there’s one thing that is always a constant at the restrictor plate tracks of Talladega and Daytona, it’s that smaller budget teams can be right in the mix with the larger teams of the sport, jockeying for position at the front of the field and giving themselves a shot to pull off the upset and win.

Heading into Sunday’s GEICO 500 at Talladega, Go Fas Racing and driver Matt DiBenedetto should be a combination to watch as the No. 32 Ford team has run up front in these races before and likely will again. In the season-opening Daytona 500, DiBenedetto was running near the front of the field in the closing laps before a late race crash brought his chances of winning to a halt.

Despite the Daytona finish not going the way they had planned; the team is still optimistic they can get it done when the green flag flies at Talladega.

“We always mark off the superspeedways as ones we legitimately have a shot,” said DiBenedetto. “A lot of people saw the Daytona 500, we were running third with two laps to go pushing our Ford teammates up there to the front. We have a legitimate shot at winning. Love coming to these races. You’ve got to have a lot of luck on your side for sure.

“That would alleviate a little bit of work too on the (All-Star Race) fan vote, I guess, then we wouldn’t have to worry about that. We’d just be in on a win. We look forward to coming to these races for sure.

“It’s no question how fast the Fords are on the superspeedways, so that’s always extra fun.”

Mason St. Hilaire, team manager for Go Fas Racing, also chimed in on their prospects this weekend and had the same amount of optimism as his driver.

“As a small team, we have great guys working back at the shop and here at the track,” he said. “Our body hanger is probably one of the best in the business. He puts things together with a very minimal budget. For us to show up and have such a good car each time, we do mark off the superspeedways as something that we enjoy and love coming to and look forward to competing in as a small team.”

In addition to the team’s optimism about their chances at Talladega, they also announced a new sponsor in Zynga Poker, which will sponsor them in seven races later this season, beginning with the All-Star Race. Along with the All-Star Race, Zynga will be the primary sponsor at Pocono, Daytona, Watkins Glen, Bristol, Las Vegas, and the season finale at Homestead.

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David Morgan is the Associate Editor for Motorsports Tribune. A 2008 graduate from the University of Mississippi, David has followed NASCAR since the early 90’s and became hooked at an early age after attending his first race at Talladega Superspeedway in 1993. He has traveled across the country since 2012 to cover some of the most prestigious events both IndyCar and NASCAR have to offer, with an aim to only expand on that in the near future.