Toyota Racing – Christian Eckes
NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series Quotes
BROOKLYN, Michigan (August 6, 2020) – Kyle Busch Motorsports driver Christian Eckes was made available to media via videoconference in advance of the race at Michigan International Speedway:
CHRISTIAN ECKES, No. 18 Safelite Auto Glass Toyota Tundra, Kyle Busch Motorsports
Your fellow Truck Series driver Spencer Davis tested positive for COVID. How does that make you feel?
“COVID is a scary thing. I think this proves that anyone can get it, with Jimmie (Johnson) getting it about a month ago. It’s a serious thing. I feel like we are taking all the necessary precautions to kind of contain it, but obviously, it’s a scary thing that is bound to happen. I didn’t know about that till now, so hopefully he does better and gets better, and hopefully we can get him back soon.”
The 2020 schedule has been finalized for the Truck Series. Have you seen the schedule?
“Yeah, I saw the schedule this morning when it was announced. There’s a lot of race tracks on there that I like a lot and a lot of race tracks we just went to, so it will be really good as far as being a rookie and going back to a race track we just raced at and having the setup from this year and everything in that aspect. I’m looking forward to a lot of those race tracks.”
Are you looking forward to Michigan?
“I feel like I need one spot. That’s kind of the thing I’ve needed for the last two weeks. I raced there last year in both the Trucks and ARCA, so it’s probably one of my most experienced tracks as far as the bigger race tracks. I feel pretty comfortable going in there. I liked it a lot last year, but we had a lot of struggles. I think I blew probably 15 right rear tires throughout the race. Overall, I feel pretty comfortable and confident going into this one.”
What extra precautions are you taking with the Pandemic?
“I’m taking all the necessary precautions. I haven’t eaten out in who knows when. It’s been nice because I’ve been healthy, but at the same aspect, I would like to eat out a little bit here and there. As much as I can. It’s hard every once in a while, but at the same aspect, I feel like I’ve taken the necessary precautions, not only me, but everybody at KBM (Kyle Busch Motorsports) to do a good job with that. I feel pretty comfortable with that.”
What do you like about Michigan?
“It’s an interesting track for sure. It kind of races different than anything. It still has that mile-and-a-half characteristic to the Truck Series, where you have to draft and you have to utilize that draft, but in the same aspect, it’s different because it’s almost like a superspeedway, in that aspect. It’s just more advanced. It’s a fun race track for sure, and I feel like it’s a fun race. I feel like you can take chances, and still have plenty of time to get back through the field if you mess up or make a bad move and fall out of the draft, it’s kind of like Daytona or Talladega, where if you just stay patient, and get through the field, you will have a shot at it. It’s a fun race, and I always like going to Michigan.”
Darlington has been added to the Truck Series schedule.
“Yeah, I’m looking forward to it. Darlington is always a place I watched growing up. I have always loved watching the Southern 500, and all the Xfinity races and everything that has happened there. It’s a track with a lot of history, and one that I haven’t been to before or even seen in person, but in the same aspect, I feel like our Safelite Toyota team will be really strong there as well.”
What are you doing to get ready for the Daytona Road Course?
“I don’t know yet, man. I’ve never road raced before in my life. A lot of simulator time and hopes and prayers, I guess. It’s going to be a rough one, but it’s going to be a long race of learning, and hopefully by the end we will be in contention. But yeah, I’ve never road raced in my entire life, and it’s probably going to be interesting.”
What are you early impressions of the Daytona Road Course from your time in the simulator?
“It’s fun for sure. It’s really fun. There’s a lot of aspects to it – I guess it’s all four corners, so I will be really good at those four corners, but the other, I don’t know how many, it will a little rough probably. It’s a fun road course. I’ve been on some others on the sim, and I feel like, honestly, it’s the most fun one I’ve had so far. I’m definitely looking forward to running laps. How good I’m going to do? I haven’t really determined yet, but we are going to try our best and see what happens.”
There has been a lot of races this year with no practice or qualifying. How much have you leaned on Kyle (Busch)?
“A lot. Thankfully, there has been a few Cup races that have been before the Truck race. I think the Xfinity race at Texas, I talked to him before – he talked to me and Raphael (Lessard) right after the Xfinity race to help us out with that. He called us after Pocono. He called us before Kansas. He’s just been really hands on this year and really done a good job of trying to get us up to speed and trying to get us better. I’ve really relied on him more than ever because it’s needed. Not going to these places, not having any practice. You need to be 100% off the trailer. I’ve got a decent amount of truck starts, but still, I definitely don’t feel as comfortable as I’d like without practice. Leaning on him has been a huge help, and something that I definitely appreciate.”
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