Reddick charges back into playoff contention

Over the last two months, Tyler Reddick has been charging back into NASCAR Cup Series playoff contention, but he’s still looking for more.

Reddick charges back into playoff contention
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Reddick and his Richard Childress Racing teammate, Austin Dillon, have shown they have the speed to compete with the likes of Hendrick Motorsports and Joe Gibbs Racing this season.

But there is a lot more to winning races than just being fast.

Reddick calls some of the missing ingredients “the little details.”

“Probably the biggest one has been here in the last two or three weeks is I’ve got to continue to get better on pit road. Charlotte was a very challenging one for us,” Reddick, 25, explained. “With the nature of that race and the lack of comfort that I had running really close to the maximum speed limit allowed, like Kyle Larson could all night, I was very off in that regard.

“I was absolutely terrified of having a speeding penalty and completely derail what could be a very manageable and realistic top-10 day, even with those little crumbs left on the table. We have to find ways to get better at all the little details. And then just avoiding the little mistakes along the way.”

Tyler Reddick, Richard Childress Racing, Chevrolet Camaro Alsco Uniforms, Chase Elliott, Hendrick Motorsports, Chevrolet Camaro NAPA Auto Parts, William Byron, Hendrick Motorsports, Chevrolet Camaro Liberty University

Tyler Reddick, Richard Childress Racing, Chevrolet Camaro Alsco Uniforms, Chase Elliott, Hendrick Motorsports, Chevrolet Camaro NAPA Auto Parts, William Byron, Hendrick Motorsports, Chevrolet Camaro Liberty University

Photo by: John Harrelson / NKP / Motorsport Images

Another area of possible improvement? Restarts.

“The last month or so there’s been one restart a race, I’d day where I’d choose the wrong lane, anticipating where the car ahead of me is going to go, and it puts us back two or three spots,” Reddick said.

“It’s just little details, especially in the Cup series. You can’t just be really fast on the race track to win races. All these big teams are really calculated to know how much to push at any point in the race.

“But for me, it is nice to see how much better we’ve been able to get in about a year’s time. We still have a lot of room to grow.”

In the last nine races, Reddick has moved from 28th to 13th in the series standings, fueled by seven top-10 finishes in that span. That includes winning the pole and finishing ninth in the inaugural race at the Circuit of the Americas.

The performance on an unfamiliar road course gives Reddick hope for a similar finish in Sunday’s race at Sonoma (Calif.) Raceway, another track on which Reddick has no experience.

“It seems like we’ve been hitting it pretty good on the road courses here lately,” he said. “There’s a good chance we can roll in there and be pretty quick. It’s just going to depend on how the race plays out.

“I’m very excited about Sonoma. But I’ve got to again remember I’ve never seen this track. I have not logged a single lap around this place once in my life. I can’t help but be confident because we’ve been able to improve a lot at the road courses.

“We didn’t have a good run at the Daytona Road Course race, but at the Clash we were really quick. My expectations are high but still there’s a lot of uncertainty going into it.”

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