You’ve had some of your best outings at Road America when you raced in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, and you and your fellow competitors enjoyed racing there for the first time in the Cup Series last year. How do you feel about heading back this year?
“I’m really excited for Road America. It’s a really prestigious road course in our country and I think it’s a place where, if you have any bad tendencies, it’s going to show up at Road America. You have so many different corners, there are so many hard corners, it just brings out some of the best road-course racing.”
How do you think the NextGen cars will fare at Road America this weekend?
“Obviously, the NextGen cars are very different, but we’ve seen so far that they’re very well suited for road-course racing. I think Road America is a track that’s really tough – it’s a really tough road course. Like I said, if you have any bad tendencies, they’re going to show up there. But with how well the NextGen cars race on the road courses, I think you’ll see a lot of guys doing well out there. It should be even more competitive than we’ve seen so far.”
One of the track’s nicknames is “America’s National Park of Speed,” and the fans there are known to be among the most passionate in all of motorsports. How do you like that aspect of racing there?
“Those cheese lovers, they might be out of control (laughs). It’s awesome to go up there. Just hardcore race fans, people who live and die by that racetrack, and I think it’s really cool to see people who are that passionate about the sport.”
At just over 4 miles, a lap around the 14-turn Road America layout is the longest on the Cup Series schedule, each lap somewhat of a “road trip” in itself. If you could go on a road trip with anyone, who would that be, and why?
“That’s a good question. I think a lot of people are probably going say Dale Earnhardt. He’s really iconic in our sport, somebody who I think would be fun to talk to about what it was like back when he first got going and how much the sport’s changed, and what he thinks about it now. I think it would be a really interesting conversation.”