Ford Performance NASCAR: Michigan 2 (Mark Rushbrook, Heritage Trophy Press Conference)

Ford Performance Notes and Quotes
Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS)
Sunday, August 11, 2019

MARK RUSHBROOK, global director, Ford Performance

HOW IMPORTANT IS THIS FOR FORD IN YOUR BACKYARD? “This is our home track and in the backyard of Ford Motor Company and it is really important for us to perform well in front of our employees, executives and all their families. It is a big deal. We brought 1,100 employees and their families out to watch the race today and we had great support from all our senior management here today to watch and to celebrate this victory.”

THIS MUST HAVE BEEN A GREAT WEEKEND FOR YOUR COMPANY WITH EDSEL FORD HERE, IT MUST HAVE BEEN A REAL FORD CELEBRATION: “Yeah, Ford is a family company, for sure. Having Edsel Ford support us as much as he does and Bill Ford and Joe Hinrchs and all the senior executives of the company. It is why we are in racing, because Henry Ford won a race with Sweepstakes and started the company. It is important for us to be on track, racing, and using it in tech transfer and learning how to make our road cars better. We got to have employees come out here and see what we do first hand and then see the ultimate result on track. It means a lot to everybody.”

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THIS IS FOUR WINS IN A ROW HERE FOR FORD AT MICHIGAN, WHAT KIND OF MESSAGE DOES THAT SEND TO CHEVROLET AND TOYOTA? “We want to win every race but we definitely want to win here at Michigan. To have the Heritage Trophy, we display it proudly and it will go back and be in Dearborn first thing in the morning for our executives to see there and we will put it on display for our employees to see. It is kind of neat the way the trophy works. You bring it out here and give it back at the beginning of the race and it is kind of neat to take it right back at the end of the race. It is great to do it four races in a row. We want to keep that streak going.”

WHAT KIND OF TECHNOLOGY FROM NASCAR GOES INTO THE ROAD COURSE BUSINESS? “There are a lot of examples of that. As you know, there are no parts that are on the race car that go directly onto the street car from NASCAR but the technology and engineering processes that we use, I could sit here for a couple hours if you wanted to talk that long. At a high level, the engine analytical tools that we use to design our engines for the road cars and race cars are the same tools. By stressing those tools in the racing environment to make them even better it ends up making our road car engines even better. Same thing for aero CFD, computational fluid dynamics, it is the same tool on our road cars and race cars and we are stressing that tool to make it more precise and accurate with what we do in racing that ends up making our road cars better for their aero performance or air flow for cooling. The final way is in vehicle dynamics. The simulation we use, especially the driving simulator, we have two of those now at our Tech Center in North Carolina and we use those same two simulators for working on our future road cars instead of using prototypes. We are able to do the development work in the simulators and it reduces the number of prototypes to make the end product better, making our road cars better. There are a lot of examples like that and it is pretty meaningful to have the racing team be able to win on track but to also know we are making our road cars better at the same time.”

WHY ARE YOU GUYS SO GOOD HERE? “Of all the active tracks on the circuit, we have 38 or 39 wins at Michigan. I think it is a combination of the power and fuel economy which is a testament to Doug Yates, Roush Yates and the engine team and use of our analytical tools of optimize the power and fuel economy which we saw today with what Kevin and the Stewart-Haas team was able to do.”

CAN YOU UPDATE US ON THE GEN 7 CAR PROJECT? “We continue to be excited about the new car for 2021 and the relevance that is going to be put into it to make it even closer to our road cars with the body and suspension. I think that NASCAR has done a great job in the leadership of that, including the right partners to help with the design and development of that. Engaging all the OEM’s and teams. There is a lot of positive movement behind it right now. It is going to be a great race car. It will look great and race great and we are excited about racing it in 2021 but we have a lot of racing to do between now and then.”

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