Chicagoland: Kenseth - Thursday media visit

Matt Kenseth, driver of the No. 17 DeWalt Ford Fusion, became a father for the second time earlier this week. He spoke about that during his Q&A session before Thursday's practice session. KATIE HAD THE BABY ON MONDAY, SO SHE ...

Matt Kenseth, driver of the No. 17 DeWalt Ford Fusion, became a father for the second time earlier this week. He spoke about that during his Q&A session before Thursday's practice session.

KATIE HAD THE BABY ON MONDAY, SO SHE LISTENED TO YOU. "Yeah, she did good. I told her I would make it worth her while if she did that on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday, so now I just have to make good on my promise."

HOW IS IT BEING A FATHER FOR THE SECOND TIME? "It's good. It's only been three days, but it's good. You get very little sleep the first couple of days, but it's been really good. Everything went really smooth, actually. Everything seemed to go really smooth. Katie is doing really good. She had a really good pregnancy and delivery, so everything was good."

HOW WAS YOUR WEEK CHANGED? "As far as my schedule during the week, it really didn't change at all. I really didn't have anything to do this week, which turned out really good, but my week itself changed a lot."

HOW? "Like I said, I really didn't have anything to do this week because her actual due date was last week and the baby came within a day or two of that, so I had the week all blocked off where I didn't have a thing to do, so, actually, my weekly schedule didn't really change, except for hanging out down at the hospital and doing all that fun stuff."

WHERE YOU ARE IN POINTS NOW, ARE YOU APPROACHING THINGS DIFFERENTLY WITH 8 TO GO? "No. We're really doing everything the same. To be honest with you, I'm surprised we're even in the top 12. We ran not the greatest and finished even worse. For the last few months we just really haven't had any good finishes. Even last weekend, we probably had a top-three car and with the tire situation and the late cautions on the short runs our car wasn't very good and we didn't get the finish we need there, either. So we're very, very fortunate to be where we are in the points right now and we all know that we need to start finishing better and need to start finishing at least as good as we're running or better. We still haven't been able to do that, so once we start doing that, I'll think about it more. But, to be honest, I'm just happy and surprised that we're in it right now."

CAN YOU PINPOINT AN AREA YOU NEED TO WORK ON? "Really all the areas. There's not really one thing and, really, honestly, a lot of it is stuff that we don't have a ton of control over, it seems like. The tire thing last weekend, a lot of people had problems and they wouldn't let us run more than 20 laps before there would be a caution because they knew there were tire problems and our car wasn't really set up for a short run, it was set up for a long run like we always have at Daytona -- hot and slick and handling and all that stuff, and it just didn't play into our favor. It's just stuff that we really couldn't control a lot once we got into the race. It's just something different all the time. We never can quite get our finger on it, but I feel like we've been running a little bit better lately and that helps a lot because the better you run, the better chance you have of getting some finishes and getting some more points."

THIS IS A HOMECOMING FOR YOU AND DREW. WHAT'S IT BEEN LIKE WORKING WITH HIM? "It's been good. I love having Drew around. We've been getting along really good. I think we've been getting a little bit better every week. The first couple of weeks were almost too good to be true, obviously, and it's been a lot tougher since then. Those first two weeks were pretty smooth, but Drew's been doing a great job. He's been learning a lot. He knows what it takes to do this job and we've been communicating well together and well together with Chip and the team, and I just think it's gonna continue to keep getting better."

WILL THERE BE A LOT OF FAMILY HERE? "I always love coming up here. It's a really cool race track and it's a part of the country that I'm pretty familiar with growing up a few hours north of here, so it's fun to come down here. I always see a lot of family and friends and guys I used to race against, stuff like that."

ARE YOU WELCOMING THE OFF WEEK COMING UP? "Yeah. The schedule this year -- usually everybody just complains about the schedule -- the but schedule this year is a lot better than it's been in the past, in my opinion. With this off-weekend in July and we have another off-weekend at the end of August, we haven't had that in a long, long time to kind of give you a little rest before the stretch to the end of the year. I'm really looking forward to this weekend. For me personally it couldn't have worked out at a better time, having the baby this week. And for the crew guys it's nice to have it broken up a little bit and have a week off to get rested up and if there's anything we want to work on, get it worked on and get ready for the stretch."

WILL YOU STICK AROUND THE HOUSE? "Yeah. I don't have a lot of plans. A week from Tuesday I'm racing at Slinger, but I've got a week-and-a-half before that, so I don't really have any plans other than being around home."

-credit: ford racing

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Matt Kenseth