Phoenix II: Martin Truex Jr. preview

CORNELIUS, N.C. -- A familiar face in the NASCAR garage area will soon say "Ciao" to her boss Michael Waltrip and her NAPA Know How Pit Crew. Michael Waltrip Racing's team trainer Giovanna Lecis returns to Italy on Nov. 30 to resume work as a ...

CORNELIUS, N.C. -- A familiar face in the NASCAR garage area will soon say "Ciao" to her boss Michael Waltrip and her NAPA Know How Pit Crew. Michael Waltrip Racing's team trainer Giovanna Lecis returns to Italy on Nov. 30 to resume work as a personal trainer near the Vatican in Rome. Lecis' hard work over the last two seasons contributed to the two-time Daytona 500 champion losing weight and improving his strength. She was also instrumental in the five Tissot Precision Pit Crew and two Mechanix Wear Pit Crew of the Quarter awards won by MWR's No. 00 and No. 56 teams' pit crews.

MICHAEL WALTRIP ON GIOVANNA LECIS: "Giovanna has inspired me. She not only trains me, but she makes me want to train because of her spirit. She's healthy physically as well as mentally. In my mind, the two are tied closely together. You have to like what you see when you look into the mirror and you have to like your commitment to improving yourself in order for a guy like me to like myself. When I started this process over two years ago, I don't think a normal trainer would have gotten me motivated enough to stay disciplined on a training regimen. Gio is a petite woman on the outside, but she is bigger than life on the inside. She makes me want to work hard for her. I am fortunate our paths crossed and I am grateful to call her my friend. She is going to be missed by everyone here at Michael Waltrip Racing."

PIT CREW COACH GREG MILLER ON LECIS' CONTRIBUTIONS TO MWR: "Her training is obviously very professional. When she came on board, it elevated our style of training in NASCAR. She's been a champion in her own right in a different sport and the way she trains kind of showed the guys here that there is a whole new level to what we can accomplish. Having her involved in our program has done nothing but elevate our guys to be a different kind of athlete and have a different mentality to training. She created a whole new perspective as to how we train our pit crews."

LECIS ON HER NASCAR PIT CREW EXPERIENCE: "It is the first time in my life that I had to learn to work in a group. I understand teamwork now. In Italy, I always worked as a personal trainer. It was one-on-one instruction. It was the same when I was in competition. It was just me and a coach. Here, it's a team of pit crew guys. I had to think differently. I had to think with 10 people in mind and how to train them all together. It was hard in the beginning. I had to build their trust. I had to show them I was just as strong as them. I did one-arm push ups. Now, they are like my brothers. This is an experience I will remember for my entire life."

-source: mwr

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About this article
Series NASCAR Sprint Cup
Drivers Michael Waltrip , Martin Truex Jr.
Teams Michael Waltrip Racing