MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES
FEDERATED AUTO PARTS 400
TEAM CHEVY PRESS CONF. TRANSCRIPT
SEPTEMBER 20, 2019
WILLIAM BYRON, NO. 24 LIBERTY UNIVERSITY CAMARO ZL1, met with media to discuss the contract extension with sponsor Liberty University, the changes that have been made to the Roval, the importance of stage points in this round of the Playoffs, and more. Full Transcript:
OBVIOUSLY, LIBERTY HAS BEEN IN THE NEWS FOR OTHER ISSUES, BUT THIS WEEK, YOU GOT THE CONTRACT EXTENSION. CAN YOU TALK ABOUT THAT AND WERE YOU EVER WORRIED ABOUT ANY OF THAT?
“Yeah, it’s great that we have Liberty University back on the car next year. Everybody over there has been really instrumental in my career, especially at Hendrick Motorsports, in kind of working with the team, with the development of their race car, and everything like that. So, it’s been really good and I’m excited about working with them more. Obviously, my studies with them has been a critical part in that too. I don’t really worry about that stuff. I think everyone over there has been a tremendous help for me.”
“Yeah, I just drive the race car and try to represent them.”
DO YOU SEE ANYONE IN EITHER IRACING OR THE NASCAR HEAT SERIES THAT YOU THINK WOULD BE A POTENTIAL TO MOVE UP AND FOLLOW THE SAME LINE INTO RACING WITHOUT ACTUALLY GOING THE SHORT TRACK ROUTE?
“I mean there are a ton of really talented people on iRacing. I still go on there quite a bit and race. I didn’t go in there this weekend for Richmond, but in general, I’m on there quite a bit and there are a lot of really talented guys on there. I don’t know specifically one person, per say, that would need the opportunity. But I think if there was some way we could get guys in cars to test maybe just one time to see how they would do, in comparison to other race car drivers, I think that would be cool. I think it would be a neat thing. I don’t know how they could pull that off, but that’s kind of how I got my start. I was just testing a car one time and going up against people that raced real cars before, and I did pretty well. So, I think that would be a good start.”
DO YOU LIKE THE CHANGES THEY HAVE MADE TO THE BACKSTRETCH ON THE ROVAL? ARE YOU EXCITED ABOUT THAT?
“Yeah, it’s going to be interesting because the back chicane is going to be really slow compared to what we had last year. It’s interesting because the oval portion of the track kind of trails off on the bottom of it. I don’t know if they fixed that or they changed that, which I don’t think they did, but I think that’s going to make it really tough to kind of make that transition because you are going onto less banking. I don’t know, I think it’s going to be really difficult to make the braking zone correctly every time, especially the first time on the race track. I think a lot of guys are going to miss the braking zone there and if you do miss it, you hit the turtles, fly the nose and destroy the car. I think it’s going to be a whole different element for us. You’re going to have to figure out how to get in there successfully consistently. That’s going to be a new challenge, kind of like the chicane was. I remember how challenging that front chicane was for everyone when we first got to the Roval because when you were going off of Turn 4, you were so fast and then you’d have to get slowed down to 40 or 50 mph. It’s going to be a passing zone probably as the weekend goes too.”
WE SAW YOU BRUSH THE WALL JUST A LITTLE BIT IN FINAL PRACTICE. HOW MUCH DID THAT SET THE TEAM BACK ON YOUR PRACTICE GOALS FOR THE SESSION AND HOW WAS YOUR CAR?
“It didn’t really affect it. If we were at a 1.5-mile track or something, it would be a big deal. I was thankful they were able to fix it. I’m sorry that my guys had to work on it, obviously, and that’s not fun. But yeah, I don’t think it affected the speed of our car or anything. We are still just looking for some speed and hopefully just have a decent weekend.”
YOU LEAP-FROGGED OVER YOUR TEAMMATE, ALEX BOWMAN, JUST BY THE POINTS THAT YOU PICKED UP IN THE STAGES LAST WEEK. IS CHAD (KNAUS) PUTTING A LOT OF EMPHASIS ON THAT, JUST TRYING TO ACCUMULATE POINTS SINCE YOU DON’T HAVE WINS?
“Yeah, it’s critical for us. I don’t know the points exactly, but ninth place on back probably has close to the same amount of points based on wins and everything. It’s easy to kind of jump up there with some good stages and a good finish. We just have to try to do that this weekend. I think for the stages, you can easily acquire points over the course of the race that can kind of propel you past a couple of guys. We weren’t too worried about our points situation going into this round because there are a number of guys that are similar in points. We just have to try to stay where they are.”
Team Chevy high-resolution racing photos are available for editorial use.
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