MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES
FEDERATED AUTO PARTS 400
TEAM CHEVY PRESS CONF. TRANSCRIPT
SEPTEMBER 20, 2019
RYAN PREECE, NO. 47 KROGER CAMARO ZL1 Media Breakout Session Highlights:
WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR MEMORIES OF MIKE STEFANIK AND WHAT HE MEANT TO YOUR CAREER?
‘I’ve been privileged to race against a lot of great drivers. I’m from the Northeast. I’ve learned a lot of lessons from Mike and others just in general, those lessons you won’t learn racing against young guys that haven’t learned those lessons. Mike was always a really good guy to me. He just knew how to place you where he wanted you to be, to be able to get around you without slamming you. There was somebody that I remember I put a nerf bar to one time and he was not happy. And, I don’t blame him. And from that moment on, like you didn’t want to ever have to really do that. You learn those lessons to get around a guy without slamming and from there on out, it’s like this isn’t all right. You can’t do that, right? So, that was a lesson I learned for sure. And then you learn how to do it without doing it in kind of placing that guy where you want him to be without slamming him. I knew Mike enjoyed flying planes and doing that and building them. It’s really unfortunate. I’ve been luck enough to race against guys like him and experience those times.”
HOW DO YOU THINK YOU’VE DEALT WITH THE CHALLENGES OF YOUR ROOKIE SEASON?
“We’ve had a couple of highs and a lot of lows and it’s just got to continue to be better. I felt like we headed in the right direction after New Hampshire. We just re-evaluated how we needed to do things and I feel like we got better. At Pocono, we didn’t have a finish to show there. I felt like we were going to end up with a top 15. At Watkins Glen, we were going to end up top 15. We had a string of consistent races where I thought we could end up in the top 20. And you’re going to have bad races here and there. The biggest thing is just communicating and trusting each other to make those changes better. I’d say that’s the biggest thing that separates Xfinity to Cup. A lot of these guys have been working with each other for a while and they understand when they’re serious about something, there’s a reason for that, on both sides. So, I think communication is key. I think you guys see that with Chris (Buescher) and (crew chief) Trent (Owens). They’ve been working together for three years. Halfway through last season, they really started to make a run. So, we just need to find to keep making the car better as we show up.”
WHAT IS YOUR TEAM’S PHILOSOPHY REGARDING TRIMMING OUT THE CARS?
“At Richmond it’s not. I could be totally wrong, but I’d say you want all the downforce you can get here and all the grip you can get. So, I don’t think that really had much to do with it. I think they came with a really good idea, and it’s working. And being the second practice, if you’re one of the first cars out there, you’re going to go fast, right? It seemed to show that. So, I’d say they have just been definitely doing a good job of executing. When we come to the track they get through practices and make the cars better. Our cars have speed. You’ve just got to get the balance right for the driver and the driver needs to do all he can to keep communicating and better as a group.”
ARE YOU TESTING ANYTHING FOR HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS FOR THE PLAYOFFS?
DO YOU HAVE ANY THOUGHTS ABOUT THE ROVAL?
“I enjoy it. To be honest, we’re all on the same playing field. It’s not like somebody has a shortcut somewhere. I enjoy road racing. We weren’t too good at Sonoma. We did good at Watkins Glen. I was good at the Roval last year, I felt like. We passed a lot of cars. We went for stage points and had to start in the back. But at the end, we even drove up to fourth. So, I feel optimistic. It’s going to be a challenge. You’ve just got to be as prepared as possible.”
ON THE PROGRESS OF JTG DAUGHERTY RACING THIS SEASON
Trent (Owens) and Chris (Buescher) have done a great job. We were good at Michigan. We have had some times where we’ve been pretty good. But, there are rookie mistakes. There is learning communication. Everything just adds up. So, you have to execute. That’s what it’s all about at this level.
“I think they’ve made leaps and bounds. These cars are good cars. Everything is there.”
WILL YOU BE BACK WITH THEM NEXT YEAR?
Team Chevy high-resolution racing photos are available for editorial use.
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