Third Versus the Alternative: "When it comes down to the end of the season like this, drivers have a lot to think about out there on the race track. I had to think about my finish last week when Carl (Edwards) and I were battling for second at...
Third Versus the Alternative:
"When it comes down to the end of the season like this, drivers have a lot to think about out there on the race track. I had to think about my finish last week when Carl (Edwards) and I were battling for second at the end of the race in New Hampshire. I got up under him and about wrecked both of us, so I gathered myself and decided third place is better than fifth. Right now we cannot afford to make any mistakes on the race track. I need the points too bad to try anything risky. I want to finish all the remaining races as high as I can and get the most points I can in every race. You never know what will happen to the people in front of you, so we want to make sure that we maximize every opportunity we can to get the points."
"This track is one of the nicest facilities that we race on. I have to really brag about what Roger Penske has done with the place. All of the officials and employees are very nice with the way they handle things, even in bad situations. At some places we go to, security can act like they own the place and boss people around. Roger has done a great job making sure that doesn't happen at this track.
It is beautiful. Everything is very professionally done, even the traffic flows well. It's great to see the trucks get to compete at such a top notch facility."
Two groove racing:
"Generally at this track, it becomes a two-groove race. It's like Michigan where teams usually pick the low groove to pass. Most of the racing is done on the bottom groove, but if you get blocked on the bottom you can roll outside to pass. It resembles a longer version of Las Vegas, just add one half-mile to that track and call it a new name. Since it's basically flat, you need to have a lot of horsepower. We run soft springs to get the truck to run faster down the straightaway. But then that doesn't help you to get off the corners, so you have to find the right combination to make it fast. We are taking Beavis there and it usually adheres to the track's surface very well. So I look for us to be strong in Fontana."
This weekend's truck is Beavis, the same truck that Hamilton raced and won with in Darlington earlier this year. Hamilton also raced it in Dover and Kansas. He finished second and 16th respectively in those events.
"NASCAR announced earlier today they were changing the first race we have next year to a night race. I think that is a great move on their part. It will bring a bigger draw to our race and help us have something different from what the other two series will have there.
It's great to kick off the season every year in Daytona. There is so much hype around Speedweeks anyway. Now they are trying to make it even bigger by changing our race to be at night. It was hard for people to get off work and come see us race on a Friday afternoon, now they will have that chance to come after work and see it under the lights. NASCAR and its associations are smart when it comes to their events and how to make them bigger and better. Every year attendance is growing. It just goes to show you that racing is the most popular sport out there right now. I always loved racing there at night in my Winston Cup car, and now I will have the chance to do it in a truck. It's going to be a great change in our schedule."