Ford Performance NASCAR: Cole Custer New Hampshire Media Session

Ford Performance Notes and Quotes
Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS)
Friday, July 19, 2019

EVENT: Foxwoods Resort Casino 301, Loudon, NH.  (Media Availabilities)

COLE CUSTER, No. 00 Haas Automation Ford Mustang – HOW DO YOU PREPARE FOR THE HEAT THAT IS EXPECTED THIS WEEKEND? “You really just try to hydrate as much as you can and also you eat good on race day.  You don’t want anything bad in your system and also have as many electrolytes as you can.  We usually all have something that we use to try and get some electrolytes in us, so that’s pretty big.”

American Muscle

DO YOU HAVE A COOL BOX IN THE CAR?  “Yeah, I have an A/C unit in the car, so that helps a little bit for sure, and you can always dump water on yourself and stuff like that, and that helps a lot.”

IS IT BASICALLY YOU, CHRISTOPHER BELL AND TYLER REDDICK AS FAR AS CHAMPIONSHIP FAVORITES GO THIS YEAR?  “So far, for sure.  We’ll see if a fourth guy comes in or not, but it all comes down to one race at Homestead, so you never really know what you’re gonna have until there, but I think at this point you’re just trying to keep your own momentum up and try to get to Homestead.  We’re just trying to build as many Playoff points as possible and then from there when we get to Homestead we’ll settle it there.”

YOU’VE WON FIVE RACES THIS YEAR.  WHAT HAS BEEN THE DIFFERENCE?  “I think Mike Shiplett coming to our team was pretty huge and our engineer, Davin Restivo.  I think how much experience Mike has and the ideas that they brought over here, so I think that was pretty huge and also it’s my third year, so I have a lot more experience on how to work traffic and how to work all the different scenarios through the weekend.”

DO YOU CONTRIBUTE MORE FEEDBACK THAN BEFORE AND MAYBE YOU’RE MORE OF A LEADER THIS YEAR THAN THE PAST?  “Yeah, I think at this point there are still things I can do better for sure, but I think I contribute well to the team and able to give good feedback and lead us in the right direction.  I have enough experience to know what’s going to be good and what’s going to be bad and how the track should change.”

DO YOU FEEL THERE’S A BIG THREE IN THIS SERIES?  “Yeah, it seems like it.  It’s pretty crazy how often we’re one, two, three.  That’s pretty rare to happen, but right now we’re definitely winning a lot of races and hopefully we can just try to separate ourselves a little bit.”

WHO WOULD BE A CANDIDATE TO BE THE FOURTH GUY TO CHALLENGE YOU, BELL AND REDDICK?  “I guess Allgaier.  I think he has a lot of experience and races really good.  Sometimes he doesn’t have the fastest car, but he’s able to make a good day out of it, so I would say him at this point.”

IOWA IS NEXT WEEK.  HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT GOING BACK AGAIN?  “I’m really excited about it.  I think the last race we closed in a lot on what the 20 guys have been doing there.  They’re always really fast at Iowa, so we were close last time, but I think we just needed to fine-tune it a little more and we’ll be right with them.  I’m looking forward to going back and seeing what we can do.”

CAN YOU TALK ABOUT HOW YOUR MUSTANG JUST LIT UP AT KENTUCKY?  “Yeah, I think it was pretty huge.  Mike Shiplett just knew exactly what to do when the sun went down.  We kind of struggled through the day, but as the VHT wore out and the sun went down we just knew what we needed in our car.  That was the biggest thing and I think we had clean air also, so from there I just had to not mess up.”

WHEN YOU SEE BELL IS 20 LENGTHS AHEAD OF YOU AND YOU CAN’T GET CLOSE TO HIM, BUT YOU KNOW THERE’S STILL A LOT OF RACE LEFT.  HAVE YOU GOTTEN BETTER AT MANAGING WHAT’S GOING THROUGH YOUR HEAD AT THAT POINT?  “The thing is you can’t really think about it that way.  At times during that race I definitely lost my cool because I was thinking that way, but you just have to think about your own car and how you think you need to get it better.  Whether the 20 is better than us doesn’t really affect us at all because you have to make yourself and make your car better, so you just focus on that and how the track is gonna change your car.”

HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT THE FLAT CORNERS HERE AT NEW HAMPSHIRE?  “I think here the biggest thing is rolling the center.  You’re always gonna be tight rolling the center, but that’s the main part of the corner here.  What’s really important is the entry and exit, having those good so you can set yourself up good for the center.  It’s a really technical race track and hard to get a hold of, but hopefully I can figure it out this time.”

IS THE ENTRANCE TO TURN THREE DIFFICULT WITH HOW BUMPY IT IS?  “It’s definitely difficult to get through those and you just have to kind of make sure you’re not locking the tires up and make sure you have your arc good and stuff like that, but it’s very violent.  I think the hardest part of New Hampshire is just the technical part of it and getting your center speed.  It’s all about working your brakes right and just rolling the speed.”

WHEN YOU WIN A LOT OF RACES AND GET TO THIS PART OF THE YEAR EVERYBODY ASKS ABOUT NEXT YEAR.  WOULD YOU RATHER BE IN A CUP CAR THAT HAS NEVER GONE TO VICTORY LANE OR AN XFINITY CAR WHERE YOU COULD WIN RACES, WHAT WOULD YOU RATHER DO?  “I don’t know.  I think you’d want to be in the car that could win, I guess, in the XFINITY Series.  It’s not bad to go to the Cup Series and learn and do stuff like that, but it’s all about what your situation is and what cards you’re dealt.  Right now, it’s always good to win races.”

YOU WERE THE YOUNGEST GUY TO WIN HERE AT ONE POINT.  IS IT GOOD TO COME BACK TO A PLACE WHERE YOU’VE HAD SOME SUCCESS?  “I won a K&N race and a Truck race here.  I feel like back then I had really fast cars, but I didn’t really understand the race track.  I was just on the gas and that doesn’t really work in the XFINITY Series.  You’ve got to know what’s going on and you’ve got to know how to work the track, so I feel like I have a lot better understanding of the track right now.  I’ve struggled here the last couple of years, but now I feel like I can go out there and hopefully compete for a win.”

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