This Week in Ford Racing June 21, 2005 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Dale Jarrett, driver of the No. 88 UPS Taurus, has won on every type of track on the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series circuit except a road course. As the series heads...
This Week in Ford Racing
June 21, 2005
NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series
Dale Jarrett, driver of the No. 88 UPS Taurus, has won on every type of track on the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series circuit except a road course. As the series heads west to Infineon Raceway for this Sunday's event, Jarrett plans to brush up on his road-racing skills at the Bondurant School of High Performance Driving in Phoenix. Jarrett recently spoke about that trip and the weekend ahead.
DALE JARRETT - No. 88 UPS Taurus
YOU'RE OFF TO BONDURANT THIS WEEK FOR SOME TESTING. IS IT JUST LIKE A REFRESHER COURSE FOR YOU TO GET USED TO DRIVING ROAD COURSES AGAIN? "Yeah. I don't think it ever hurts to go back. I've had a couple of the guys from Bondurant come when we were testing somewhere at a road course, but that's a little different. This way they can get in the car with you and refresh your memory on some of the techniques and hopefully get rid of some of the bad habits you might have gotten into over the years because it's easy to do that. You get into doing things a certain way and even though it might feel right, it might not necessarily be the proper way. So Elliott and I are gonna go out for a day and have a little fun and, hopefully, it will benefit us by the time we get there on Friday.
YOU'VE WON ALL THE BIG RACES IN THIS SERIES AND YOU'VE WON A CHAMPIONSHIP, BUT YOU HAVE NOT WON ON A ROAD COURSE. IS THAT THE ONE THING YOU'D LIKE TO ADD TO YOUR RESUME? "Yeah, it would be nice. With the road racers that we have out here now and even with the specialists that come in, it's gonna make that more difficult. But with strategy playing out the way that it does anything can happen out there, so that's the attitude that you have to go with. You go make your best effort and, hopefully, maybe your strategy will play out to a point that it could get you in a position to try to win."
A LOT OF GUYS GREW UP RACING GO-KARTS AND COMPETING ON ROAD COURSE-TYPE TRACKS, BUT YOU NEVER REALLY HAD THAT EXPERIENCE DID YOU? "No, I never had any type of road-race experience. My first venture at a road course was at Road Atlanta when the Busch Series went there back in the early '80s. I made the trip out to Bondurant when the school was actually at Sears Point, and that's where I got my road-racing experience to begin with. But that first race was a lot of fun and it's something I've enjoyed doing over the years. I've had some really good runs at different times and even though I haven't won, I've had some good moments. I've also had some embarrassing moments, but if you're gonna do this you're gonna have that happen from time to time."
THE ROAD COURSE AT INFINEON HAS CHANGED OVER THE YEARS. DOES IT FAVOR YOU THAT NOW IT MIGHT BE MORE OF A SUPERSPEEDWAY THAN ONE WITH A LOT OF TWISTS AND TURNS? "You'd think maybe it would, but I actually enjoyed the old way better. I felt like there were more opportunities to pass and that the track was really slick. Then when they started repaving and changing certain areas, I think that took away some of the things I liked about it. Everybody has to deal with the same thing, but it's a totally different road course than when I started racing there years ago."