Brendan Gaughan , No. 77 South Point Hotel Silverado, Qualified 14th, Finished 2nd: "I am just bummed, cause I had number five (NCTS win). First thing I asked was if it was a green-white-checkered when I saw the caution or did we go green with...
Brendan Gaughan , No. 77 South Point Hotel Silverado, Qualified 14th, Finished 2nd:
"I am just bummed, cause I had number five (NCTS win). First thing I asked was if it was a green-white-checkered when I saw the caution or did we go green with three laps to go. If you go green with three laps to go, there is still a green-white-checkered. I was kind of hoping there was one more green white checkered in there because Ted (Musgrave) had some damage and I think I had something for him. We had probably one of the strongest trucks, those guys up front Mike (Skinner) and Ron (Hornaday) were really strong all night. Bryan Berry, crew chief, worked on it. We were a little tight, then a little loose, then a little tight. I love Bryan to death, I have bragged about him all year; he does a great job, never quits on me. It was great to be back where we are supposed to be, with all the distractions we have had going on, just really glad I was able to show that you can do it from the West c oast, we were up there, we earned it, we didn't it from the wrecks, but had a hell of a time getting through this guys wreck (Skinner).
"It was exciting, I joked on the radio to my crew guys, that was my Georgetown degree that worked there, Isaac Newton. It looked like it worked to me. It was banking, he was up high, I figured he'd fall. I closed my eyes and went through the smoke. You know with certain things are going to happen and guys like Ron and Mike are going to drive all the way through a wreck. They aren't going to hit the brakes and wreck. I was already up on the high side, I saw them both go down, what I expected, which was what I would have done, which was grab third gear, hit the gas and make sure I don't hit the wall. That seemed like what Mike did, he drove right off away from the wall. The smoke was there and I just barely missed him. Came right through it and cleared daylight.
"I have been getting pretty good at that lately, getting lucky and missing some of these wrecks. I'll claim skill, but in reality when you close your eyes, things happen."
ON HOW MUCH OF A DISTRACTION IT HAS BEEN WITH TEAM MERGER:
"Distractions are one thing. I learned a long time ago from a very large, intimidating gentleman that you don't let distractions bother you when it counts. Coach Thompson said you can deal with distractions, you can let them bother you, you can let them affect your life but in the end, when it comes down to what you have to get done, you get it done. It may be distraction, but the hardest part is to keep the guys focused. The guys don't have that attitude; they didn't have a chance to work with a great man like John Thompson to instill that in them. It has been really hard for me and what I have been working on the most, is keeping them happy, confident and comfortable. Let them know they all have jobs, knowing that nobody is going to be without a job. I would never that happen in a million years, I don't care if I pay them out of what money I get. I don't get a whole lot to race cars. Matter of fact, I get noth ing to race cars. (Laughs). So I have a few other businesses that make money (Laughs). Mr. Gaughan does a pretty good job for me; he takes pretty good care of me.
"It has been very difficult for them, I am very proud of how they have overcome it. I am very proud of how Bryan Berry has been doing and for me personally, when you get in the race car, all the distractions go out the door. Fortunately, this is a sport that once you do get in the cockpit, you get your helmet on, the window net up, nobody else can look at me, nobody can talk to me except the people I want. That makes it very easy to do when it comes down to it."
-credit: gm racing