Ryan Newman Texas II Saturday media visit

Team Chevy Racing press release

RYAN NEWMAN, NO 39. QUICKEN LOANS/CARRIER CLASSIC CHEVROLET, met with members of the media at Texas Motor Speedway and discussed his goals for the remainder of the Chase, the announcement of a new sponsor for 2012, what to expect in Phoenix next week with the new surface and much more.

Ryan Newman, Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet
Ryan Newman, Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet

Photo by: Action Sports Photography

TALK ABOUT THREE RACES TO GO AND WHAT YOU WANT TO DO THIS WEEKEND AT TEXAS MOTOR SPEEDWAY. “Our last three races we need to kind of pick up the pieces of the puzzle that we dropped in the first seven of the Chase. I said going into it I felt like we had a championship contending team and I think we did for the first couple of races but it kind of spiraled out of control and from our standpoint we just need to finish on a good note and build for 2012 and take every opportunity we have to get the car in victory lane. I guess regain focus and piece it back together.”

ANNOUNCED EARLIER THIS WEEK ABOUT THE SPONSORSHIP FROM QUICKEN LOANS IN 2012, TALK ABOUT THAT. “It was a big day for us and to have Quicken Loans on the car in 2012 for nine races. To be a part of Stewart-Haas and their first venture in NASCAR, racing in the Sprint Cup Series it’s an honor for me to be able to represent them. They are the nation’s largest online mortgage group out there and we’ll do our best to get them in victory lane obviously but just proud to represent a new sponsor in the sport which is obviously in tough economic times. Really proud of the people at SHR that put it all together, Tony Stewart and everybody else.”

WHAT DID YOU THINK ABOUT THE BOSS MAN GETTING ALL FIRED UP IN VICTORY LANE AND THROWING THE GAUNTLET DOWN TO (CARL) EDWARDS? “It’s not unlike him. Usually he’s all excited about getting a new clock or something like that but he was really gung ho about giving a good speech afterwards. I was proud of him for that. He made a point and then he’s shown that in this Chase winning three out of seven, he’s a force to be reckoned with so these next three are going to be interesting for all of us. I think from my perspective if you look at it I don’t know the last time in any championship or Chase format that we’ve had four teams from four organizations have a shot in the last three races to go for a championship so it’s exciting.”

YOU’RE KNOWN FOR YOUR ENGINEERING BACKGROUND AND ALL THAT, HOW MUCH DIFFERENT NEXT WEEK SHOULD WE EXPECT THE PHOENIX RACE TO BE SINCE THEY’VE CHANGED THE TRACK? “From what I experienced in the test the performance of the race and the function of the race is going to be a derivative of how wide the race track gets. It took us the better part of two days to get it just from sliding around a little bit and I actually spun the car out and tapped the wall a little bit down in (turns) three and four just because I got up in the dust basically. Whatever chemical or physical reaction there is between the tires and the race track it turns into a dust. We moved it up and I know they took some school cars out there and trying to do everything they can, but having the cars, trucks and everybody else out there is going to help. I think the race track will be its best when the checkered flag falls on the Cup race. The racing itself I think will be good, the track I don’t think is a huge difference. After the first test when it was 110 degrees out there and all the grumblings that went around in the middle of the summer, I was pleasantly surprised with how good it drove out there.”

EARLIER TODAY MARK MARTIN ANNOUNCED TWO MORE YEARS OF RACING WITH A POSSIBLE THIRD, SO AT THE END OF THIS CONTRACT HE WILL BE CLOSER TO 60 THAN 50, DOES THAT INSPIRE YOU TO RACE INTO YOUR 50’S? “No, it inspires me that I might be able to and can but my intentions for my career are not to pattern them off Mark Martin and his from a longevity standpoint. I didn’t’ want you to take that the wrong way because Mark is very successful.”

YOUR TEAMMATE HAS WON THREE RACES IN THE CHASE, THE GUY WHO IS LEADING THE POINTS HAS WON ZERO RACES IN THE CHASE, WHAT DOES THAT TELL YOU ABOUT THE NUMBERS IN TERMS OF HOW THE POINT SYSTEM WORKS FOR THE CHAMPIONSHIP? “I don’t know. There's still and always will be a reward for consistency and Carl (Edwards) has had that. I don’t remember exactly what the difference was going into the Chase, so there’s truly a difference in the math there. I think Carl started with nine bonus points and Stewart had none so there is a difference in respect to that and the fact that Stewart spent three of his races he won in the Chase equaling out to the wins that Carl Edwards had going into the Chase if I remember right. HE HAD ONE. “One win all year. Okay I assumed he had three, sorry. So there’s six points difference there. My point is the consistency is a big part of what we do as well as the wins. Those bonus points for the wins are nice but they’re not a necessity to be a consistent Cup championship contender.” IS THAT RIGHT? “I don’t know if that’s right. In the end when you’ve got the trophy in your house and it was right enough. But from the fans perspective, the media’s perspective is it right? I’d say it’s 50/50. You can argue it until you’re blue in the face.”

GOING BACK TO PHOENIX, IN REGARDS TO THE DUST ON THE TIRES DO YOU FEEL GOODYEAR NEEDS TO DEVELOP A NEW COMPOUND? “Like I said, I don’t know if it’s a chemical or a physical change that the tires actually make. As the tires interact with the asphalt they create a dust. When we ended the test the track was dustier out of the groove than it was when we showed up on a green race track after it had been raining and nobody had been on it so it’s not a factor of the tire, I think any tire would probably do that because of the asphalt that they have there. They did a unique quenching process because it was so hot out there to try to get the asphalt to quench and cool and I don’t know if that was a part of it or not. It’s nothing on Goodyear, Goodyear has a good tire for the race and a good tire we had at the test. SO BASICALLY IT’S JUST A BYPRODUCT OF IT? “It’s a byproduct of a new paving. A different asphalt company, whatever the chemistry is. Look at the paving that we’ve had in the past between places like Homestead and Darlington and Charlotte, every one’s a little bit different. I would expect the aggregates in Phoenix, Arizona to not be the same as the ones in Darlington, South Carolina.”

ATLANTA HAS A BIG AGGREGATE, TIRES WEAR ALL YOU DRIVERS LOVE ATLANTA, ALL THESE OTHER TRACKS THAT HAVE BEEN PAVED HAVE A TIGHT AGGREGATE SO THE TIRES WON’T FALL OFF, DO YOU THINK SOMEBODY SHOULD BE LOOKING AT WHATEVER THEY DID AT ATLANTA AND TRY TO PUT THAT KIND OF AGGREGATE ON SOME OF THESE OTHER TRACKS SO THE TIRES WEAR AND YOU GUYS CAN BE FAST AT THE START OF A RUN THEN CHANGE TIRES? “That was discussed a little bit when the process in Darlington was done because everybody enjoyed so much how the tires fell off and you changed the way you drive, you changed your points and all that stuff. I think the other percentage of it because it is 50 percent asphalt and 50 percent tires, the fact that the chemistry of the tires changed a little bit and you don’t see nearly the marbling of the tires as we used to which is obviously for other reasons. It’s not just the aggregate, yeah that old style asphalt whether it’s in the aging process that makes it do it or in the way they can apply a new asphalt to be aged. They are basically putting 220 grit down instead of 80 grit or vice versa, that’s something I think that people consider but in the end when you’re spending millions and millions of dollars do you want to have something that is aged when its laid down. I think that is the question that everybody considers the most.”

YOU WERE TALKING ABOUT TONY AND THE THROWING OF THE GAUNTLET; IT WAS INTERESTING LATER WHEN HE SAID HE FELT LIKE HE’S DONE FAVORS FOR A LOT OF PEOPLE AND NOW IT’S TIME TO CASH IN THE CHIPS, WHAT’S YOUR TAKE ABOUT WHAT HE MEANS BY THAT? “I don’t know who all he’s been playing poker with so I’m not really sure how to answer that. I don’t know. I know that he’s had mentors in his career and he’s mentored people in his career so I don’t know what that family tree looks like when it comes to those things, if he expects something from Carl Edwards or Kevin Harvick or whoever or something in return. I don’t know that’s a better question for him than me.”

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Series NASCAR-CUP
Tags chevrolet, fort worth, newman, stewart