DO YOUR JOB, THEN MEET ME FOR & ...
DO YOUR JOB, THEN MEET ME FOR THE PUSH'
Jack the car, fill it with fuel and for certain have five lug nuts nice and tight. And then there's the push - 3,400 pounds in a 40-yard dash.
"No mistakes," said gas man Mike Metcalf, who was part of Red Bull Racing Team's No. 83 crew that won the 2008 Sprint Pit Crew Challenge.
"No matter how fast you are, if you're getting docked three seconds for a mistake you can never make that up. Everything is so competitive. As far as the push, it's all about the jack man and the fuelers getting to the car. Whoever gets it rolling first usually wins. It's all about getting the car rolling."
The No. 83 bowed out early in last year's edition of the Pit Crew Challenge. But in 2008, the No. 83 team's legs had just enough juice to push the Red Bull Toyota across the finish line first in an event that showcases individual strength and skill of the men who go over the wall on race day. That year, the No. 83 defeated the No. 11 of Joe Gibbs Racing in the final with a total time of 22.902 seconds. Richard Childress Racing's No. 31 team is the defending champion.
Representing the No. 83 in the 2010 Pit Crew Challenge (7 p.m. ET Wednesday, 9 p.m. on SPEED) include Bryan Jacobsen (front changer), Josh Houghton (front carrier), Dave Woodhead (rear changer), Dwayne Moore (rear carrier), Shaun Peet (jack man/strength and conditioning coach), Metcalf (gas man) and Brian Dheel (catch can). Metcalf and Peet were part of the 2008 winning team.
"It's a unique idea to showcase what our guys do on a weekly basis," said pit crew coach Lance Munksgard. "A little different than what we exactly do on pit road, but it gives them the spotlight for a couple of hours. The guys get excited about it. It's more about bragging rights than anything else.
"We're going to have fun with it. Our goal is to not have any penalties. If we don't, then we should have a good shot at it. But we can't lose focus on our main goal - and that's pitting the cars on Saturday night and Sunday and having good, solid days there and not getting caught up in just one competition."
The event inside Charlotte's Time Warner Cable Arena pits 24 crews - seeded based on Sprint Cup's current owner standings - facing each other in head-to-head stops and sprints with the winners of each heat advancing to the next round. The No. 83 team enters the event seeded 21st.
The champion's payout will be $70,675, with individual prizes of $10,000.
"The number of years it's gone on the more people start to dissect it a little bit better, see where you can win and lose," Munksgard said. "The push part of it, having the great athletes that we have, that's the most important part. Also, something we've worked really hard on with the tire changes is making sure we have all the lugs tight and they don't hurry."