Toyota Racing – Christopher Bell
NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS)
New Hampshire Motor Speedway – July 19, 2019
Joe Gibbs Racing driver Christopher Bell was made available to the media in New Hampshire:
Christopher Bell, No. 20 Rheem-Watts Toyota Supra, Joe Gibbs Racing
How are you able to get around this track with its flat turns and being fast consistently in the flat corners?
“You just have to have a really good race car, man. That’s something that I’m very fortunate with driving for Joe Gibbs Racing. We’ve had a lot of success on the short tracks here recently. I think Joe Gibbs Racing has a great short track package. I’m excited to see what we have here at Loudon.”
Compare NHMS to ISM Raceway and what might carry over from there to here.
“Yeah, old Turns 3 and 4 and new Turns 1 and 2 (at ISM Raceway) are definitely relatable to Loudon here. The VHT though adds a little bit of a difference, but it’s definitely similar. You can learn a lot from Phoenix Turns 1 and 2 and apply it here.”
Did you enjoy last night and racing at Thunder Road?
“Yeah, I did enjoy last night. It was fun, man. They have a great following there and it’s really cool to see how many people show up, how many cars, how many fans and the atmosphere there is really, really special.”
How did you get hooked up with doing something like racing at Thunder Road?
“It was actually through Seth Holbrook. He’s a guy that worked on my stuff at Kyle Busch Motorsports and he got me setup with the track (owner), Cris (Michaud), there.”
Did you gain anything from racing at Thunder Road last night?
“Just a good time. That was the only thing I gained from it. The track shape really related to Volusia, Florida. Obviously pavement to dirt, then that’s it. The way the back straightaway was pretty round, front straightaway was straight.”
Was the approach just don’t wreck when you’re driving someone else’s car like that?
“Ultimately, I’m just there to have a good time and hopefully draw a crowd. It seemed to work. There were a lot of people there. I just didn’t want to go int here and make enemies. I wanted to go in there and have fun and put on a good show.”
Was it a lot different racing at Thunder Road than when you do it in a sprint car?
“Absolutely. Whenever I go sprint car racing, that’s my bread and butter, right? I grew up doing that and whenever I go there I expect to win. I wanted to win last night, but I just don’t have a lot of experience in those things. Expectations were just a little bit different.”
Can you tell us yet what your plans are for next year?
“I think you know as much as I do. Actually, you probably know a little bit more than I do.”
You’ve said over and over that there’s no need to worry about where you’re at next year right?
“Ultimately, it’s not up to me. I can’t make the decisions, so I’m just along for the ride.”
Do you feel this year will mean that you’ve spent enough time in the Xfinity Series?
“That’s not really for me to say either. I get to drive race cars for a living, so that’s special.”
Given a choice of sitting in any car that hasn’t finished in victory lane ever or racing a car that you know that you can go out and win in, what would you prefer to do?
“I learned early on in my career that a race car driver is only as good as the equipment. I definitely want to make sure that I’m in equipment that can win.”
How do you feel about this weekend?
“I feel good about this weekend. This is probably statistically my best race track on the schedule for whatever reason. It’s not by design my favorite race track, but with my history it seems that it’s been good to me.”
Do you feel like you’ve lost any momentum at this point in the season or do you still think you’re as fast as anyone else in the Xfinity Series?
“I led a bunch of laps at Kentucky last week and ran second, so I think we’re right there.”
What has made you so successful at New Hampshire Motor Speedway?
“I think it just boils down to race cars and my race team. They do an excellent job of paying attention to details and I think I’ve got the best race cars out there.”
With the heat tomorrow, how do you prepare yourself throughout the week?
“Just trying to hydrate. That’s really the only ticket – making sure that you’re prepped up and then obviously eating well leading up to the race is really important. Making sure that you’re prepping your body to do it.”