Online Community Campaigning to Put DiBenedetto in All-Star Race

This week in NASCAR, the biggest story in the news isn’t Carl Edwards dominating Bristol on Sunday, or Kyle Busch’s bad luck early in the Food City 500, or even the fan who was almost turned into a speed bump by Busch. Instead, the biggest story was a true feel-good story in NASCAR, a rare one of the underdog’s hard work paying off: Matt DiBenedetto’s hard-fought sixth-place finish.

Following the race, the driver of the No. 83 BK Racing Toyota gave a heartfelt, emotional interview to FOX Sports, and as a result gained a huge outpouring of congratulations from fans and peers alike. Many of these fans feel that DiBenedetto embodies the gracious underdog role quite well, and they want to do something for him; vote him into May’s All-Star race at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Reddit.com’s r/NASCAR community of fans was the driving force behind Josh Wise’s fan vote win in 2014 and are looking to repeat this year, thanks to Reddit user /u/AfroMidgets and former driver Kenny Wallace. The movement has gained traction on Twitter as well, with fans and drivers alike placing their votes for DiBenedetto, including Wise:


American Muscle

CHARLOTTE, NC – MAY 16. 2014: Josh Wise, driver of the No. 98 dogecoin-reddit.com Chevrolet, during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sprint Showdown in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton /NASCAR via Getty Images)

Considering the strength-in-numbers approach that r/NASCAR has, DiBenedetto could very well be another entrant into the small All-Star field. Reddit user /u/beezwacks, who is one of the r/NASCAR moderators, had this to say about the fan drive:

The /r/NASCAR community loves to support underdogs who show promise, and Matt DiBenedetto has proven he is one of those. We’re looking forward to watching our grassroots campaign to vote DiBenedetto into the All-Star Race grow, giving the BK Racing driver more exposure and with luck and effort, the fan vote in the All-Star Race.

Despite the positive fanfare that this idea has brought up, there is no doubt that there will be fans who disagree with the process. After Wise’s 2014 All-Star fan vote victory, many fans were angered that he was voted in over the popular Danica Patrick. A DiBenedetto fan vote could anger many of those same fans again. However, the fan vote is in place to vote in drivers that fans find worthy, and the process is the same for all drivers.

Another perk that could come into being if DiBenedetto is voted into the All-Star was brought up during Wednesday’s r/NASCAR AMA (Ask Me Anything) that he held. If he is voted into the All-Star race, he has agreed to change the name over his door to the subreddit’s nickname for him: DiBurrito.

With the movement to put DiBenedetto in the All-Star race gaining momentum and gathering strength, it seems that regardless of the end result of the voting, he has finally made the transition from nobody to somebody in the NASCAR garage.


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The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of SpeedwayMedia.com.

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