MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES
DAYTONA 500 MEDIA DAY
DAYTONA INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY
TEAM CHEVY DRIVER PRESS CONFERENCE TRANSCRIPT
FEBRUARY 14, 2018
CHRIS BUESCHER, NO. 37 KLEENEX CHEVROLET CAMARO ZL1, met with members of the media at Daytona 500 Media Day. Full Transcript:
SO, YOU DO FEEL LIKE COMING BACK FOR A SECOND YEAR THERE IS MORE TO BUILD ON?
“Like all of the time you spend trying to get people to work together and get those relationships in place and learn everybody’s work habits that takes time. That is tough at the beginning of the season, especially when you look at the West Coast swing early on. We were trying to build parts for a second team then. It was just a lot of work that we weren’t focusing on speed of our racecars we were focusing on having race cars and having people and we don’t have to do that this season. I think that is a pretty big thing. Even when you go from team to team and people have worked together and I’m just a transplant into a team that has already been there, there is still a period of getting to know the crew chief, figuring out on our scale of how we balance a car out, all of that is done this season. I think that is a big thing to have because it is tough without that. We have had an Xfinity season where we had the same thing where we had the same group, but that off-season we were told that we didn’t know if we were going to make it the whole season. We were probably going to run the first 10 races and then have to shut it down. So, that is a whole different kind of stress and we don’t have any of that. We know what we are showing up to do. We know who is going to be there to do it and we are in a good place to be able to do it.”
HAVE YOU HAD A CHANCE TO SEE THE NEW PIT STOP FORMATION IN ACTION AND WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS?
“Everyone is going to figure out how to make it as efficient as possible. No, it is not as slow as I think we were originally thinking, but it is definitely not as elegant as it used to be. There is a lot more of that chaos going on during a pit stop now. For me, it’s kind of a double-edged sword, it’s great that we are getting another team member off of pit road and out of a very dangerous area, at the same time you want to make sure you aren’t putting too much work load on one person trying to jump off the wall and do too much. Those tires are not light by any means and trying to grab two of them and jump around is tough on people. There is going to be a balancing act on how to do it safely and how to do it quickly.”
IS THE PIT STOP THING SOMETHING THAT IS GOING TO EVOLVE ALL YEAR?
“Yeah, it will change. People are going to figure it out. People are going to come up with different things and going to change it. You know, the old pit stop has been in place for so many years that people constantly worked on it to the point that they got it smoothed out. There is always getting a little faster, but I think it got down more to the equipment you had to do it with versus the actual methods that you did or the dance that you had off of pit wall. It will change as people learn. Atlanta, I feel like people are going to put 4 (tires) on every time, so they are going to get plenty of practice on pit road and we have been practicing a lot back at the shop as well.”
DOES IT CHANGE FOR YOU AS A DRIVER?
“I don’t know. I haven’t really thought about it from that stand point. You always try and be consistent and put it on the mark when you hit pit road. It could be more important now to be in the right position being that if the guy has two tires he can’t change his direction very quickly, so there might be something to that. That sounds like something Brad (Keselowski) would say, he is one that would think that far in depth and has good merit there.”
WHAT DID YOU LEARN THIS PAST WEEKEND?
“I did more watching than driving. We didn’t draft any, so we are just conserving what we’ve got right now. We will learn a little bit more in the Duel, but watched The Clash closely. Trying to figure out what the heck is going on. Handling is going to be a big part. All that skew you saw to the left-side I think you are going to see a lot of that go away. I would have to believe so. It is just not prone to a good handling race car. I feel like you are going to have to get a lot of it out.”
SURELY YOU CAN’T DO THAT IN THE 500:
“Naturally you are going to get loose in and that will help that, but it’s going to get tight off.”
WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS FOR THE DUEL?
“Try and make sure we race the 500 with the car we unloaded first and foremost, but we do want to learn. I feel like you do have to get some experience in before the 500. We are going to have to go out there and try and get in the draft and try to figure it out, move around and see what we’ve got going on and make sure that we finish, but we are going to have to get up in there in that draft and learn a little bit.”
DO PEOPLE DROP DOWN OUT OF LINE IN THE DUELS?
“I think some people will. I don’t know. It depends on when and where and what the situation is. If it’s getting crazy in front of you, you might opt to back out for a little bit, but at the same time you’ve got to finish it decent. You’ve got to get a decent starting spot. It doesn’t matter a whole lot, but I envy the front row very much right now. Just the fact that they know what they’ve got and they know where they are going to be at the start of the 500. Not a whole lot on the line for them at this point.”
ARE THE PIT STOPS A CONCERN FOR YOU?
“As far as doing a live pit stop, I’m not worried about that. It is going to be slower than what we are used to, but I don’t feel like it’s going to be that big of a deal inside the car. It’s going to be a matter of everybody smoothing it out, making it more efficient as we go and everybody learning.”
DID YOU NOTICE A BIG DIFFERENCE WITH THE NEW RIDE HEIGHT RULE?
“No, it didn’t ride any different. It is probably why they are a little bit out of control in the draft with all the skew and some of the other things. Maybe it will be different there, but single car runs, it drove better.”
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