Ford Performance NASCAR: Kansas 2 (Ryan Blaney Media Availability)

Ford Performance Notes and Quotes
Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS)
Friday, October 18, 2019
Hollywood Casino 400 | MEDIA AVAILABILITY

RYAN BLANEY, No. 12 Menards/Dickies Ford Mustang

WITH THE WIN LAST WEEK AT TALLADEGA, HOW MUCH PRESSURE DOES THAT TAKE OFF YOU THIS WEEKEND? “It takes all the pressure off. Going into Talladega after Dover, we were kind of in a must win situation I felt like with how far behind we were. We either had to win Talladega or Kansas. Winning last week takes pressure off this week. You aren’t biting your nails about points, you just go try to win the race to get bonus points for the next round. That is the goal for this weekend. That is kind of where our mindset is. It was a huge weekend for us last week.”


American Muscle

YOU FINISHED 32ND HERE IN THE SPRING AND YOU SAID THE CAR WAS JUST OFF, DID YOU FIGURE OUT WHAT THE PROBLEM WAS? HOW CONFIDENT ARE YOU ABOUT THIS RACE? “You hope you figured out the problem. I think we did. I think we pinpointed where we missed it. The thing is, I thought we were decent in practice and then we got in the race and we were way off. You think back on that and what you did in practice and how your car felt in practice and what you changed during the race, and think that maybe that is the direction you need to go. It was good to sit down this week and review the first Kansas and figure out what we did wrong and what we can do better to fix it. That was just an off race for us. We usually come here and run really well. It was disappointing, that first race, but hopefully we pinpointed what went wrong and will run better here this weekend.”

BEING LOCKED INTO THE NEXT ROUND ALREADY, IS THIS A WEEKEND TO TRY STUFF? “Maybe one or two things in practice. We don’t get a lot of practice. We only have two practices today and that is it. They aren’t very long either. The way practices are nowadays. Maybe you mock up a couple things at the race shop that maybe you try if you get decent in practice or maybe if you are way off you try some stuff. Not a ton of things we are trying. You kind of want to just work on what your know and see where your speed is at. I feel like if you think you speed is competitive in practice and if you have time you try something else, but we aren’t really on a science project this weekend. We want to be really competitive, but you might try a couple different things, just a different way. There are no science parts and pieces that we are throwing on it this weekend.”

TWO OF YOUR THREE CAREER WINS HAVE COME IN THE POSTSEASON, EITHER ELIMINATION RACES OR MUST-WIN SITUATIONS LIKE LAST WEEK. WHAT IS THE SECRET TO THAT? “I would like to have success in the regular season. You want to collect wins through the regular season and not wait until the playoffs. You don’t want to be a person that just wins one race a year. You could win no races a year, but you want to be able to be consistently in victory lane. That is the thing I look at. We did a good job of surviving last week and putting ourselves in a spot to capitalize but I don’t know, I think this team does great. I think it is where we should be running and be competitive for wins every week throughout the year. It is a shame. It isn’t a shame but I would like to get a couple wins throughout the regular season and continue it through the playoffs, not wait until playoff time. It isn’t like that is my plan,. to wait until playoff time to get wins. I think this team rises to the occasion really well. Even if you are down, like after our bad race at Dover and having that problem, we weren’t defeated or anything like that. We knew what we had to do and kept ourselves in the game last week at Talladega. That is a big wild car drace and we missed some big ones there and controlled the race and lost the lead and was able to get it back. I think that speaks about this team and their perseverance with everything.”

RYAN BLANEY, No. 12 Menards/Dickies Ford Mustang — LOOKING AT THE NEXT ROUND, DO YOU FEEL YOU HAVE TO WIN TO ADVANCE TO HOMESTEAD, OR CAN YOU POINT YOUR WAY IN? “I honestly think the round of eight is really good for us. It is probably our best group of tracks. I think in the spot that we are in with not having a ton of bonus points that maybe some of the Gibbs guys have or the 4 car, I think it will take a win in our spot to get to Homestead. We have run really good at Martinsville the last couple years and ran fourth there this year and led laps. We were leading at Texas when we blew up. We led a bunch of laps at Phoenix and ran third. I think it will take a win at one of those places. THe guys that have a ton of bonus points can consistently run well and have a shot at it. I think we can go out and win any one of those three races. Those tracks have been really strong for us. We just ahve to find a little bit at the end to really set yourself apart from everybody else. I do like the three tracks coming up, they are really good for us.”

YOU AND JOEY HAD ISSUES AT DOVER, BRAD HAD AN ISSUE AT TALLADEGA, IS THERE ANY CONCERN AT PENSKE ABOUT THIS RASH OF ISSUES? “No. The thing that Joey and I had at Dover were separate issues. The thing I had was kind of a freak thing that you never see with hubs burning up anymore, especially a place you are barely using brake like Dover. It was a weird thing, nothing special with that left front hub. Just sometimes luck of the draw. I don’t know what happened with Brad last weekend. I am not sure what that was, if it was a fuel pickup issue or something, but there are no concerns on my side on the resilience of our parts and pieces.”

WHEN YOU WIN A BIG RACE, ARE YOU LIKE DRIVING TO THE STORE THIS WEEK AND FIND YOURSELF WHISTLING DUE TO HAPPINESS? HOW DOES IT AFFECT YOUR WHOLE MOOD AFTER A BIG WIN LIKE THAT? “I don’t know. I have never been in a spot like that before where you win a race here in the playoffs that you don’t have any of the pressure the next week. That was a nice feeling. When we won the Roval last year it took us into the next round the following week so you didn’t have time to have any pressure off of you. There were a lot of late nights and headache mornings for sure this past week. But no, it was definitely a good time to celebrate but you then have to focus on the task at hand now. We aren’t just showing up here at Kansas to fart around. We are coming to try to win this race too. It is nice not having that pressure and focus on the win and maybe you take a few more chances than you would, especially here with no tires or two tires, things like that. If we would have ran second last week we would be like seven points out and then we would have to be really worried about that stuff. I wasn’t whistling in stores or anything like that but we had a good week with the team and family and now it is hard at work toward the end of the week.”

HAVE YOU ALL BEEN IN DISCUSSION WITH NASCAR TO FIX THE HOOD FLAP ISSUES WITH THE NEXT CAR? “Yeah. I personally have not been in those discussions but I am sure the teams have. The shop foreman and things like that. The reason I think we saw a lot of hood flap problems is those things aren’t made to take a beating. All the hoods are made of carbon fiber and are lightweight and come from the manufacturers and there are lightweight braces and teather those are held on with. WHen you get in turbulent air like we do now and are pushing a lot, those things haven’t gone through that stress before. They just are flapping so hard they are eventually going to break. It is a super tiny, lightweight, aluminum bracket those are bolted onto. It didn’t surprise me with how many came off. I was surprised one of mine didn’t come off. You are pushing and seeing the thing flapping like crazy and you don’t know how it is hanging on. I am sure they took that into consideration with maybe making a minimum thickness of aluminum bracket the thing is mounted onto to maybe have a little more toughness to it. I haven’t been a part of those but I am sure they are looking at it.”

Ford Performance Notes and Quotes
Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS)
Friday, October 18, 2019
Hollywood Casino 400 | MEDIA AVAILABILITY

RYAN BLANEY, No. 12 Menards/Dickies Ford Mustang

HAVE YOU TALKED WITH MATT DIBENEDETTO ABOUT DRIVING THAT 21 CAR NEXT YEAR? ARE YOU LOOKING FORWARD TO HAVING HIM AS PART OF YOUR PENSKE/WOOD BROTHERS ALIGNMENT? “I think it is great for Matt. When I heard that news however many weeks ago it was, I was really happy for him. I have always liked Matt and think he is a great racecar driver. He has had some great runs. I am happy for Paul to finish out the year strong and hopefully get those guys their 100th win by the end of this deal. He has had a good career and become a friend of mine. I hate to see him go but I am excited for his next chapter in life. The only thing I told Matt was that the Woods are a lot of fun. I look back and that was some of the most fun times I have ever had at the race track. Getting to see Eddie and Len almost every single day and almost every weekend, and when Leonoard makes it out it always brightens your day> I still see those guys all the time, just not as often as I used to, but I seek them out as much as I can. I think it is a great fit for him. I know that car is capable of winning races and I think Matt is capable of winning races too. I think that is going to be a really good opportunity for him and we are really excited to have him there and have another person who isn’t really new in the sport, he has been around NASCAR a long time but someone who really wants to learn a lot on it and really get his take on things. Maybe take some things that they were doing over at the 95 car, they have run really great. There are always those opportunities you can have some more insight of someone who has had different equipment and car builds and different engines and seeing and comparing that experience. That is really helpful to our team.”

DO YOU EXPECT THAT WE WILL SEE SOMETHING SIMILAR TO THE JOEY AND MARTIN (TRUEX JR.) DEAL FROM MARTINSVILLE LAST YEAR AND IF YOU WERE IN MARTIN’S POSITION, HOW DO YOU DEFEND THAT? “I can’t really speak on things that I wasn’t a part of. That was between those two guys and it is hard to put yourself in hypothetical situations like that. I don’t sit around and think about if I was in Joey’s spot or Martin’s spot, what would I do or how would I respond. I think things happen and you react the way you react in whatever mindset you are in at the time. It is hard to think about that stuff. Martinsville is the first race of the Round of 8 and your ticket right to Homestead, so yeah, guys will be really aggressive out there. Imagine next year with that race as the final race before PHoenix for the championship. That will be even more crazy. It is a good opportunity on a short track to be really aggressive and things like that. It will be really hard racing like it always is at Martinsville. But that ramps up in the playoffs. It is the second best race to win because it gets you right to Miami and you can worry about your Miami car for two weeks straight and not worry about bonus points or things like that. You see what it did for Joey last year. They were able to really focus on that car and they went out and did the deal.”


Get 2 FREE stocks valued between $2.50-$1,400 when you open and fund a Webull brokerage account or earn 5% annual interest rate at Worthy.
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of SpeedwayMedia.com.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here