Toyota Racing – Riley Herbst
NASCAR Xfinity Series Quotes
CHARLOTTE (September 22, 2020) – Joe Gibbs Racing driver Riley Herbst was made available to media via videoconference during the NASCAR Playoffs Media Day:
RILEY HERBST, No. 18 Monster Energy Toyota Supra, Joe Gibbs Racing
How would you summarize your rookie season?
“I’ve had that question a few times today and it’s a difficult questions to answer to be honest with you because when we set our plans and objectives in January where we wanted to be in June and entering the Playoffs and things like that, we counted on all four test sessions that a rookie gets and all of the practice that I should have got. That kind of threw a wrench in our plans a little bit, but I thought we would have had a win by now in this part of the season. I don’t know. We’ve had some highs and lows as part of the season. I’m looking forward to it. I think that I have the confidence and the car to go win in the Playoffs.”
What did the ARCA win do for your confidence driving these Xfinity cars?
“I don’t know if it correlates too much. It’s always good to win in anything whether that be some lawnmower racing or in an ARCA car. It was good to win, but the Xfinity Series is so different, so much more competition than in the ARCA series right now. It was cool to win and add another win underneath my belt per say, but the Xfinity Series is a totally different animal and I’m still looking forward to that first Xfinity win.”
What does it feel like to come home to Las Vegas this weekend and what did you think about the Raiders win last night?
“Well, I haven’t seen my parents since quarantine, so it’s going to be good to go home and see them. I’m really looking forward to that. Like I said, I haven’t seen them in a while. I’ll kind of clear my head with them and just enjoy some family time and then head to the race track and go back to Playoff mode and try to perform to the best that we can. Regarding the Raiders, back home the town is so excited to have a professional NFL team. We’ve been wanting one for so long, so we’ve truly embraced them as our own and we are 2-0. We just beat a really good Saints team, and we are excited about it.”
Did you feel like you had a point to prove this season?
“A little bit. Every driver kind of looks at it differently. Like I’ve said before, me, my crew chief Dave Rogers, and who I’ve leaned on a bunch is Drew Herring. Us three have kind of had horse blinders on all season, to be quite honest with you. I don’t really care what people say. We have no time for that. We are just trying to improve week in and week out. Trying to be better than we were last week, and I think that’s shown throughout these seven months and hopefully into these Playoffs and we can go out and get a win.”
That’s a name I haven’t heard you mention this year. What have you leaned on Drew (Herring) for?
“Yeah, Drew has been awesome. He’s helped me tremendously. Just going to these race tracks that I’ve never been to before and having to fire off and go race there. Drew has been to most of these places and he’s a really fast race car driver. He teaches me what to expect at these race tracks, what I’m supposed to be feeling, who to pay attention to, who not to pay attention to. Keeping my mindset right. He’s been working with me for a while now and it’s helped me tremendously.”
What would you consider a successful Playoff run for you?
“I don’t know. I’m kind of bummed about our starting position now, nine points out. We are going to chip away at Las Vegas, Talladega and Charlotte and hopefully, when the cards are down, we will be able to move on to the next round. I would really be disappointed if we didn’t get out of the first round. I think that I have the crew chief (Dave Rogers), the car and the team to do it. JGR (Joe Gibbs Racing) has given me the tools to preform and now it’s kind of on my shoulders and I have to go do it.”
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