It’s been a full year since the NASCAR Cup Series has raced at Texas. It’s a track that has seemed to be feast or famine for you. What are your expectations as you head into the weekend?
“This Texas race is the first 400-mile race we’ve been in at the track. That will probably drive the intensity and make every lap more important. Last year, we had tire issues that really set us back, but I feel like our intermediate track program should set us up well this weekend. This race is going to be a very important race when it comes to being able to transfer to the next round in the playoffs. After this, we have Talladega and then the road course at Charlotte.”
You’ve had quite the streak in qualifying – earning the top starting spot in each of the first three playoff races. How important is qualifying up front, particularly at a track like Texas?
“Having a good starting spot is important because you start out with great track position. The other part of it is that it usually means you have a pretty good racecar. We put ourselves in good position. I’m really proud of the Camrys that this 20 group have been able to bring to the races since we’ve started the playoffs. Adam (Stevens, crew chief) and the entire team have been doing a great job of being prepared every week.”
What does it mean to be part of this special sponsorhip program Interstate Batteries is executing this weekend with both you and Ty driving cars with Interstate branding?
“Driving the Interstate Batteries car is kind of a right of passage at JGR – it’s like you are officialy part of the club. It’s a big deal to everyone at Interstate Batteries and everyone at JGR – they are the team’s founding partner. It’s an honor to be able to drive that car and would be even more special to win with it and at Texas.”