MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES
TEAM CHEVY PRESS CONF. TRANSCRIPT
APRIL 26, 2019
DANIEL HEMRICK, NO. 8 CATERPILLAR CAMARO ZL1 met with media in a breakout session at Talladega Superspeedway. Select highlights:
WERE THERE SOME INTERESTING MOMENTS DURING PRACTICE?
“That’s what they’re telling me. In all honesty, there were a couple moments that made you touch the brake pedal a little bit or breathe in because the guy in front of you got out of shape and I wasn’t quite in the middle of the biggest pack out there by no means, but guys were definitely must have felt okay because everybody was aggressive. It was just a matter of what’s the edge we can go to. You try to find that in practice and from the sounds of it, a couple guys almost got there. Fortunately for us, we didn’t and we’re going to keep working on our car and try to get better.”
DID IT FEEL FAST IN PRACTICE?
“The tandem deal, I never even came close to. I can get close to somebody’s back bumper, but never lock on. The speed, you just feel the engine is the biggest thing. You feel it when you leave pit road, how fast you get up to speed. We did one mock qualifying run and it was very interesting to see the data and the miles per hour from when typically you start a lap here in the past and you’re momentum is still building and getting to pit road was huge. I think they said our mile per hour was faster coming to the green than it was when I finished my lap. That means the cars get up to speed really quick and just a lot of constant RPMs is what we’re seeing out of the engine so we’re asking a lot out of our builders right now. ECR is doing a great job with that, but feels fast. That’s what we like, right?”
NO DRIVERS WOULD EVER SAY IT’S TOO FAST.
“Unfortunately, that is the case. That’s kind of how we get ourselves in a box sometimes. It is to a point to where when they get to where you can’t be aggressive and you can’t hustle the cars to make moves, it’s probably where that tipping point is for us to put on a good show. Felt like it was probably an okay balance of the speed and the drivability. The cars definitely change a lot from clean air to being pushed to trying to push. Still not too fast, just a matter of not getting over that edge.”
WHAT MAKES TALLADEGA SUCH A UNIQUE SUPERSPEEDWAY?
“Just the overall grip and the room you have at Talladega is so much greater than what it is at Daytona. I know when I come to Talladega, it makes me feel like I can focus more on the mentality of trying to put yourself in the right position because you can be aggressive and make moves and do it on a lot quicker basis because you know you have the room and you feel confident to make those moves. When you’re at Daytona, the grip falls away from you as the runs go and as the pressures come up so you lose some of that confidence and you find yourself in the middle of the storm, but not able to do a whole lot because you can’t be aggressive to make the moves you want to make. Talladega, everybody just seems to drive better so you feel more confident and just see things happen here that you see happen.”
HOW DIFFICULT IS IT TO GET TO PIT ROAD?
“That is very tough and something that’s new to us as well with this package. When you go to the brake pedal, you feel the cars really slow themselves down. To me, there are a lot of games played to try to maximize the timing, especially if it comes down to green flag stops. It’s tough. You can’t see the painted line when you leave or come off the exit of turn four to try to get to pit road. You find yourself guessing and hoping you have a good marker to go off of and those markers are changing every time we go out with this package.”
HOW DO YOU FEEL AS PART OF THE RCR ORGANIZATION COMING TO A SUPERSPEEDWAY?
“You feel a lot of pride that we carry inside our organization and the success they’ve had in the past at restrictor plate tracks. Obviously, that’s not a thing anymore, especially being here this weekend, but the builds of the cars and what we’re asking out of the engines and the drivetrains and all the things that those guys take a lot of pride in building superspeedway equipment and it’s fun to drive them because they’re extremely fast by themselves as well as in the pack. Here lately we haven’t had a lot of luck at getting one to the finish line so that’s our goal.”
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