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November 14, 2014

Ben Kennedy

Kyle Larson

Timothy Peters


KERRY THARP:  Let's roll right into our post‑race for tonight's 19th Annual Ford EcoBoost 200 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race here at Homestead‑Miami Speedway.  We're joined by our second place finisher, and that's Kyle Larson.  He drove the No. 42 Parker Store Chevrolet.  And our third place finisher is Timothy Peters.  He drove the No.17 Red Horse Racing Toyota.  Congratulations to both of you on an outstanding race here tonight, and I'll start with you, Timothy.  You came up through the field there at the very end making a late charge there.  Just talk about your race here this evening.
TIMOTHY PETERS:  Well, we just started off free all night, and we made one big swing, and it went to the other side of the fence and got tight.  So that last stop, we went back the other way, and it was just a little too much.  But it was good there towards the end.  I was hoping that Kyle and Bubba would get to racing pretty hard and maybe give us a chance there on the last lap.  But still a great effort for us.  I wish the second half of the season was the beginning, and who knows, maybe we could have given Matt and Ryan a run for their money tonight.
All in all, it's still a great effort, Marcus Richmond coming on this year, and hey, I'm proud to finish the way we did tonight.  We can go into the off‑season, build on our notes.  This was a brand new truck, so look forward to breaking it out at Daytona with our Tundra.
KERRY THARP:  Kyle Larson certainly put on a heck of a show here this evening, a great battle towards the end with you and Bubba Wallace.  Just talk about running this race here tonight.  You just showed the true racer that you are with a hard‑fought effort.
KYLE LARSON:  Yeah, it was a good overall race for us.  We were, I thought, the best truck.  Bubba was definitely the second best.  I was really good out there in clean air.  It's been a while since I've ran a truck on a fast track like this, and even when I ran Pocono, I was out front a lot, too, so I didn't really get to experience the dirty air much there, so I had forgotten a lot of things.
Once I got back in traffic after we had a bad pit stop there on the last stop, I struggled to find clean air and get back to the front, and me and Kyle Busch raced pretty hard there and I was able to clear him finally and chase down Bubba pretty quickly, and then once I got to him, he was already running kind of where I wanted to run, and was trying to run a lane lower than him in 1 and 2 and I could almost get to his inside and he could just get down in front of me enough to take my air away, and I'd get tight on exit and lose ground.
There was a couple times where I got a good run off 4 and thought about doing a slide job and just thought better of it.  And then I tried it one time there and wished the lap truck hadn't been there so I could run it even deeper.  He was able to squeeze back around me, and that was about my last real shot.  I tried something there the last lap, but I figured it wasn't going to work.
But, yeah, it was a good race.  We finished second.  Would have been nice to win.  Homestead is fun.  That was exciting.  We were almost four wide for the lead there at one point, so I hope everybody enjoyed that.

Q.  Kyle, I take it you didn't want to pull a Ryan Newman move on that last lap?
KYLE LARSON:  I thought about it.  I thought very quickly.  But I figured that would be definitely the wrong thing to do, especially in a truck race where I'm just kind of out there to have fun, and Bubba is going out there to try and gain points or whatever and get another win.  I had a finish like that a couple years ago at the Battle of the Beach and beat myself up about it, regretted it a little bit, so I definitely wasn't going to do that again, but I was going to try to run in there hard underneath him.  Maybe he'd mess up, get excited, get in the wall, but he didn't, so he did a really good job.
KERRY THARP:  We'll let Timothy and Kyle go.  Thanks for putting on a great show this evening.
And our 2014 Sunoco Rookie of the Year in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series is Ben Kennedy.  He's the driver of the No.31 Heater.com Chevrolet, and Ben, congratulations on this honor.  You had a heck of a year, and just talk about what it means for you in this development of your career to be recognized as the Sunoco Rookie of the Year.
BEN KENNEDY:  Yeah, it's really great, and I think it's a testament to the team and how hard the guys at Turner Scott Motorsports worked, especially the second half of the season.  Really kind of came together and worked hard, and had positive thoughts going into every one, and this Rookie of the Year deal is awesome.  This was something kind of on my bucket list this year.  I think everyone wants to get Rookie of the Year their first year, and it's awesome to get it.  I'm definitely humbled by it, and I'm looking forward to the future and seeing what we can't do in the future.

Q.  What is your future?  Do you know who you're going to be racing for next year and can you say?
BEN KENNEDY:  Not yet.  Still kind of working on that.  Hopefully we'll announce something here in the off‑season.  Just trying to figure out all the small pieces.

Q.  Ben, do you feel like you had a Rookie of the Year performance this year?  Are you disappointed?
BEN KENNEDY:  I'm disappointed in tonight, and I think we had a string of bad luck in the second half of the season.  We started off really strong, leading at Daytona, and getting a third at Martinsville and everything.  We just had a string of bad luck really, just kind of oddball things, flat tires with a couple laps to go and broken studs and running out of gas here and there.  But I think if you look at the whole season all together and our really strong runs, I think when we were on, we were really on.  We were up there with the top dogs, and when we were off, we struggled a little bit, but we worked hard and we worked together to make the most out of each position and each lap.

Q.  Was it difficult at times to persevere knowing the uncertainty at Turner Scott Motorsports, just trying to keep it all together?
BEN KENNEDY:  To be honest, I don't really think it fazed anyone.  Everyone came to the track like we were going to Daytona at the beginning of the year.  There was a lot of enthusiasm, really just a lot of positive emotion behind everyone.  I think that shows how much these guys love what they do and love what they do when they get to the track, just being around the race cars and working on them and everything.  It's a real kind of‑‑ it shows the dedication and commitment that these guys have to the sport and have to me and working with me.  I thank them for that.

Q.  Ben, what do you think this rookie title is going to mean to your family, and what do you think it would mean to those in your family who have gone on?
BEN KENNEDY:  You know, I hope it means a lot.  I feel like I worked really hard this year.  It hasn't been the year that I really expected.  I think I learned a lot this year, got a lot out of it, just really learning the trucks and how they drive and everything compared to what I've grown up racing on short tracks and little half miles and quarter miles and all that stuff.  I think in a way I kind of accomplished what I wanted to accomplish, and that was come here and learn, and I'm hoping that I'll be in a truck ride next year and really take everything that I learned this year and put it to the test and really get up there next year.
KERRY THARP:  Ben, congratulations, the way you handled yourself with class and poise and the way you raced out on the racetrack, very respected by your peers, and best of luck.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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