NASCAR CUP SERIES
LAS VEGAS MOTOR SPEEDWAY
PENNZOIL 400 PRESENTED BY JIFFY LUBE
TEAM CHEVY PRESS CONF. TRANSCRIPT
FEBRUARY 21, 2020
TYLER REDDICK, NO. 8 TAME THE BEAST CAMARO ZL1 1LE Media Breakout Session Highlights:
WHAT ARE YOUR EARLY IMPRESSIONS ABOUT THE NEW CHEVROLET?
“With where we’re at, I probably wouldn’t have anything good to go off of yet. But the car handles good, we’ve got to adjust on it some more to find where we want to be for the race on Sunday. It’s kind of a guessing game. You’ll probably be able to make something work here on Friday that won’t work on Sunday, and you just have to try to think ahead to find things that you like out of your car to apply to that. So, that’s kind of where we’re at. It’s kind of a guessing game, but so far so good. The car drives really good in dirty air. But I think that’s where we are at too with our setup.”
HOW DO YOU LOOK AT QUALIFYING ON SATURDAY?
“If we qualify first, then we’re probably going to suck on Sunday (laughs). So, we want to qualify 20th probably.”
WHAT DID YOU MAKE OF PRACTICE?
“We know where we’re at. We came in here wanting to be one way and we were definitely that way. We’re just going to try and work on it during the second practice, and see if we can come up with something that we can compare between and, from that, form a game plan for Sunday.”
HOW TOUGH IS QUALIFYING HERE?
“Qualifying isn’t necessarily tough, it’s just what your strategy is and what you think is going to work in the race on Sunday. Or are you just trying to get a good pit stall, I don’t know. For us, qualifying isn’t really as important. If we qualify15th, we’re happy. If we qualify first, we’re going to be a little worried come Sunday.”
“We didn’t really have time to work on them. We just loaded them up as fast as we could to get here and we’ll just have to reevaluate once we leave the west coast. We have this track, Fontana, where handling is kind of important too, and we’re obviously going to have Phoenix, which is kind of the new short track, smaller splitter package. So, we’ll see.”
WHAT’S IT LIKE BEING A NEW DAD?
“You just have to roll with the punches. If you have nice things, you tend to not care about them anymore. You’re just trying to get the diaper cleaned up, get them happy and onto the next thing. It’s just a perspective changer; game changer.”
HOW DO YOU LOOK AT THIS WEST COAST SWING?
“It will give us an indication of where we’re at after the off season, how we worked really hard to get the cars better. I’d say everyone else here is doing the same thing. It will be an indicator of that, for sure. We’ll know once we leave Phoenix what we need to work on, where we feel like we’re good. It will just get us caught up to speed on where we need to be going into Atlanta.”
LAST YEAR RCR HAD A LOT OF SPEED IN QUALIFYING, BUT STRUGGLED DURING THE RACE. HAS THERE BEEN A LITTLE BIT OF A CHANGE IN PHILOSOPHY?
“I think so. It could have been anyone’s guess on how these cars were going to race. On paper where these cars were last year, it made sense if you could maintain that track position. But you catch a car at the wrong time on the race track or have an issue on pit road, it’s hard to recover. We’ve seen guys that have been able to make it work in the past, but you just can’t make any mistakes and you have to stay up front the entire race. It just makes it a little more challenging. We’re just going to try what we think is going to be the best for us. It may not be the right answer and we might have to make some tweaks. We’re going to make some tweaks right now after first practice going into the second to see if we can make it a little better.”
“Some of my most fun races are when I have to start 30th or 35th. So, starting 20th and having to pass some cars isn’t a bad thing. I think it’s great, I love it.”
DO YOU HAVE A FAVORITE RYAN NEWMAN MOMENT OR MEMORY?
“He’s always raced hard. I wouldn’t say that’s necessarily a memory, but when I think of Ryan Newman, I think of him always racing hard every single lap. That’s kind of the way I like to race, too. That’s just how tough he is. Obviously, that was a pretty wild incident he had. But we all race like we’re bullet proof out there. The ones that say we don’t are lying because these cars are really safe. NASCAR has done a really good job focusing on that. In recent memory, ever since I came into it, it’s been the number one goal to make these cars safe and it allows us to go out there and put on a really good show. I was really glad to see non- life threatening, then the next day taking pictures with his kids and then walking out of the place. He didn’t even need shoes, he was ready to head back home. So that was really cool to see.”
WHAT WAS YOUR REACTION WHEN YOU FIRST SAW THE REPLAY OF NEWMAN’S WRECK?
“It’s violent. Things happen fast out there on the race track. Whether it was the Truck finish last Friday night when Grant Enfinger and Jordan Anderson were banging doors coming to the start-finish line. In real time, it didn’t look that violent or aggressive. When you slow it down, the splitters are bouncing off the ground and stuff. So, every time you slow things down, it really shows you how much more is going on, what’s deflecting and what’s happening. Every time you slow it down, it looks more violent. It’s just part of it. None the less, it was a crazy crash and I was just glad to hear a couple hours later that he was doing good.”
JOEY LOGANO MENTIONED HE REACHED OUT TO RYAN BLANEY AND COREY LAJOIE TO TELL THEM IT’S JUST RACING. BUT HE KNEW THEY WERE GOING TO BE CARRYING SOME KIND OF EMOTIONS FROM IT. HOW DO YOU GET OVER A BAD WRECK THAT YOU WALK AWAY OK AND SOMEBODY ELSE DOESN’T?
“It is difficult. It’s just something you have to find within yourself. Having people around can be helpful, but at the end of the day, at some point you just have to come to terms with it on your own and move on from it. NASCAR is a family, I’ve learned that as I’ve been in it more and more. I thought about reaching out to Ryan (Blaney) and Corey (LaJoie), but I know they have a lot of other guys that they race with much more frequently on Sunday’s and this is my first year. So, I knew there were going to be a lot of guys around to cheer them back up, tell them it’s just part of it and move onto the next week. It was a crazy deal, but I’m glad to see he’s doing OK.”
Team Chevy high-resolution racing photos are available for editorial use.
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