This Week in Ford Racing, July 13, 1999

This Week in Ford Racing July 13, 1999 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Tom Gloy is one of racing's most respected participants on and off the track. The former Trans-Am and Formula Atlantic driving champion ventured into team ownership in the ...

This Week in Ford Racing July 13, 1999 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Tom Gloy is one of racing's most respected participants on and off the track. The former Trans-Am and Formula Atlantic driving champion ventured into team ownership in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series (NCTS) for the first time last season along with his longtime friend and former competitor Bobby Rahal. The Gloy/Rahal team is the latest in a long line of racing efforts for the Lake Tahoe veteran who comments on the up and down 1999 season and how the NCTS and CART teams are able to compare technology notes.

TOM GLOY - Co-owner of the Gloy/Rahal Racing Team- #55 Icehouse Beer Ford F-150 --AFTER 14 OF 25 RACES, YOUR TEAM IS 16TH IN POINTS. HOW TOUGH HAS THE 1999 NCTS SEASON BEEN? "It's been a real tough season overall. We started out very strong even though we had some accidents and things going on. We were very, very fast. I think that's what we expected the season to be all the way through. Unfortunately we've wrecked so many trucks along the way. It just seems to have gotten us off base a little bit. We've turned it around somewhat over the last two weeks (11th at Milwaukee and seventh at Nashville). Hopefully we'll keep it going through the second half of the season. We pretty well dug ourselves a hole because of the low finishes we've had up to this point. But that is certainly not indicative of the quality of the team or what we can accomplish. I think that unfortunately sometimes you go through these things. We know that the right pieces are in place and we'll continue with better finishes. Ron (Barfield) is very good on fast tracks and we 're back on track as far as having a good supply of trucks. We're now in a stretch of races where we expect to do well." IS THERE ANY TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER FROM THE CART TEAM TO THE TRUCK TEAM? "When you have two types of teams as different as the trucks are from the CART cars, sometimes it's pretty interesting to just get the engineers to sit at a table in the same room and discuss different solutions to their problems. Certain things like how they arrive at some of their answers and the conclusions they get. It's amazing sometimes to listen in and hear what comes out. How one group can help the other in philosophy or in the decision-making process. It's worked well both ways for us. Certainly we've seen ideas and some things that the CART guys have crossed. We're not allowed as much technology in the truck program so we have to invent ways away from technology per se. And when we review that with them it gives them another way of looking at it instead of relying on just what their computer might have told them. It brings some human contact back into the picture. >From a pure technology standpoint, there are some things that we've done as far as testing common products. The CART team has developed a brake pad that we're now using in the truck. That gave us a direct transfer. Some of the brake-bedding procedures we use in the truck series prior to the race have been enlightening to the CART team. We pre-bed all of our brake discs and they don't necessarily do that. To me, that is very cost effective to do that instead of having the driver go out for four or five laps to bed everything up. Our laps are pretty expensive these days! It's better to do some things on the machine. These may seem like small examples but we're in contact with the CART team every day whether it's from a business side or technology side. It just helps us make better decisions. To learn from the other's experience to some extent and to move forward at a quicker pace." HOW TOUGH HAS IT BEEN FOR YOU TO GO FROM A SUCCESSFUL DRIVER TO A TEAM OWNER? "I think that the hardest thing for me being a former driver is watching and making sure that you don't get too involved from the driving standpoint. You try to help the people that you have driving for you but you have to make sure that the advice is not injurious if you get too far into it. Every driver is a little bit different. Every driver has got a different swing is a good description. When drivers are on the track, even though every turn looks the same, each one has a different approach. Drivers brake differently, they turn differently. For me as a team owner, that is the hardest thing to learn - to allow people to keep their individuality. I have to still give them the benefit of my experience and let them decide what parts of it are the best for them to use." HAVE YOU HELPED TEAM CO-OWNER BOBBY RAHAL IN HIS FIRST YEAR OUT OF THE DRIVER'S SEAT? "With Bobby right now, we're just going the beginning stages! He just stopped being an active driver so I'm sure, as there was with me, that he will go through a period of frustration with team management and engineering staffs because we're so much more involved than we were when we were driving. One lesson I learned is that you've hired your guys to do a job and you have to let them do that job. Your role becomes not only the ultimate decision maker but also hopefully the biggest cheerleader now that you're out of the seat."

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Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Bobby Rahal , Tom Gloy