RYAN NEWMAN, NO. 39 U.S. ARMY IMPALA SS, met with members of the media at Lowe's Motor Speedway and discussed having sympathy for other drivers and their situations, what changes he would like to see in the drug policy, favorite moment at Lowe's...
RYAN NEWMAN, NO. 39 U.S. ARMY IMPALA SS, met with members of the media at Lowe's Motor Speedway and discussed having sympathy for other drivers and their situations, what changes he would like to see in the drug policy, favorite moment at Lowe's Motor Speedway and other subjects.
TALK ABOUT HOW YOU THINK THE RACE SHAPES UP FOR TOMORROW NIGHT. "We've kind of talked about it a little bit this year, I think it's come up but the shorter the race in my opinion the better. It just increases the intensity of the excitement. It's still exciting either way otherwise the fans wouldn't come and see it but the intensity of the excitement and I think that's due to the briefness of the last segment. I think there's going to be some crazy things that happen before that last segment but I think just that last 10 laps getting the job done is what it's all about. For me it goes back to the open-wheel racing and USAC where its eight-lap heat races and 12-lap semi's and things like that where you've got to move forward. I commend them for not doing the inversion because there was a time at least from my standpoint where we actually raced backwards just to get the invert. It's all about racing forwards and trying to win the race."
WITH THE TALK ABOUT BRAD KESELOWSKI AND WHAT HE'S GOING TO DO, DO YOU THINK YOU GUYS COULD GO TO THREE TEAMS NEXT YEAR? "Don't know. Honestly don't know. There is a reason that NASCAR stipulated the rule to four teams and I believe in the perfect situation there is an advantage to that. Stewart-Hass, that's a better question for Tony (Stewart) and the people there. I know what the shop is set up like. I don't even know if the shop is capable of having a third team within it as far as the way it works. I think long-term there is potential for that. If you were to do it and do it right for 2010 then you better get started yesterday because there's a lot of things that have to happen. I'm glad that Brad is doing well and I think he's a good guy. Where he lands and where he gets what he wants or maybe what he deserves depending on who you are will be determined I think in the near future."
IS THERE ANY SYMPATHY ON YOUR PART TOWARDS DALE JR. BECAUSE HE IS WHO HE IS IN THE WORLD OF NASCAR AND WITH ALL OF THE PRESSURE THAT COMES WITH HIM ESPECIALLY WHEN THINGS ARE NOT GOING SO WELL LIKE THEY ARE RIGHT NOW? "Typically race car drivers are very unsympathetic. No, I have no sympathy for him. In his situation, I think he's in a good situation. There's things that cycle but I didn't have sympathy for Jeff Gordon because he didn't win at Texas prior to this year. I didn't have sympathy for Mark Martin because he hadn't won the championship. It's no different. Just because he's Dale Jr. doesn't change that."
WHAT IS IT YOU LIKE ABOUT POCONO? "I've always enjoyed Pocono because it's unique. Because you have to as a driver adapt the race car to all three different corners. It changed a little bit last year with the asphalt patch up in turn three. The racing changed quite a bit there. I really enjoy the area so for me that's a bonus in itself because I enjoy the outdoors. The race track itself, the racing I think there are a lot of great things in that area. It's not what I like. It's not what Matt Kenseth likes, it's not what anybody likes its if the fans like the race that we put on there. Those are the people that need to be asked. If you were to constructively change something that's the bottom line. I really enjoy it. I think it's a lot of fun. It's challenging. Yeah the front straightaway is long but there's got to be a long straightaway some place put it in Pocono."
WHAT IF ANYTHING WOULD YOU LIKE TO SEE CHANGED ABOUT THE DRUG POLICY? "That's a loaded question. There's a lot of things that I don't know about it. Through the last week there's a lot of questions that have risen that I don't necessarily say need to be answered but should be answered. I like the fact that there is a drug policy. I like the fact that the drug policy is being enforced. The randomness of it I believe is a good thing. There's not a situation where you can go in and drug test every athlete or every crew member before each race every weekend so there has to be a realistic part of it. I hear Matt (Kenseth) talking about Dr. Black and the fact that he gave out his cell phone number and that's great, that's a good part of it but I think there is an opportunity in the future for my personal doctor to work with the NASCAR liaison doctors and be able to make things better for everybody. The drug policy, NASCAR drivers and crew members it's just like a marriage, there's got to be a relationship and there's got to be communication. Just making that better. This is the initial first bump of the drug policy situation in my opinion and it's just going to take some time to sort everything out."
WHY DO YOU THINK THERE SHOULD BE A LIST OF BANNED SUBSTANCES? "Let me clarify that. There is a defined list of banned substances that are more than obvious. Those are the same ones that the Feds will get after you about. That is the defined thing. Everybody is different. You taking the same amount of prescription medicines as me is going to have a different affect on you because of your body weight that it does me. It is all in how it is quantified as well as the actual substance itself is what I am trying to say. Yes, it would be nice to know if I took too much Robitussin, if that was going to be something that was going to test positive and if that is considered a false positive, how all that stuff works. I don't know. I've interested myself in any part of that world, but now I kind of have to so that is why there are questions in my mind that I kind of need answered."
ARE YOU SURPRISED THAT KURT BUSCH IS RUNNING THIS WELL? "No, I am not surprised. Kurt was really strong toward the end of last year. I think he and Pat (Tryson) and they have a good package. I think that their new motor program has helped them out quite a bit. I wouldn't say I am surprised. Kurt is a very, very good driver and he is very competitive. He can hold it out on the edge. So, I am not surprised."
DO YOU THINK THE SUBSTANCES TESTED FOR SHOULD BE MADE PUBLIC FOR BOTH DRIVERS AND CREW MEMBERS? "I think drivers and crew members, car owners and wives and everybody that touches a hard card. I guess this is kind of off the cuff, but anybody that has direct responsibility to a part or piece of a race car that could have a direct result in a crash on the race track let's say. Yes, obviously the drivers are the ones piloting the car. It is not like an open beverage law where the guy in the passenger seat is not driving the car but he can have an influence on what happens in the car. I guess it is kind of a complex answer. Those are the crew members, that is my analogy of it. Those guys definitely make a different. In my eyes there is no need for drugs and there is no need to put ourselves in a position where we are having a negative impact on families and kids out there."
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE MOMENT HERE AT LOWE'S MOTOR SPEEDWAY? "My All-Star was really my one. I won an ARCA race here; we led every lap and won a Nationwide race here, that was a lot of fun. But the All-Star Race when we raced our way in to the race and then started last, made the cut then got the invert and had a fast race car, that was really cool. Because nobody expected us to even be in the race. When you race your way in then beat the best, in my opinion, that was a true All-Star moment."
WHY ARE YOU DOING TWITTER, DO YOU THINK IT IS USEFUL AND DO YOU THINK MORE DRIVERS WILL CATCH ON TO IT? "I will be honest with you; I have assistance with the Twitter situation. Everything that is on my Twitter account is true but it is not me personally doing it as some people do. I don't know how to answer all of that but, I guess I am a little bit reluctant of the whole situation. I stated it to somebody else, if I wanted you to be my friend, I would call you and talk to you. I really don't have any interest, not to sound arrogant or anything, but I know it is a part of the everyday world for a lot of people right now, the social networking part of it. I'm basically doing it for my fans so my fans know what is going on in my fan club and things like that. Those are the people that are helping me out with my Twitter account and the Facebook and all that stuff.
"I think on MySpace and Facebook we have had to say listen, you're not me. I'd rather out mowing my grass; I'm not really that big in to it. Somebody can write about me mowing my grass, that is fine, I don't care. But I am not going to be the one sitting there typing it. I would rather be steering around a tree or something."
-credit: gm racing