Wood became coach for Roush's driver test

Wood Takes on New Role With Roush's "Race for the Ride" CONCORD, N.C. -- At the young age of 23, Jon Wood is more used to receiving advice rather than giving it. That all changed two weeks ago at North Wilkesboro when Wood became the...

Wood Takes on New Role With Roush's "Race for the Ride"

CONCORD, N.C. -- At the young age of 23, Jon Wood is more used to receiving advice rather than giving it. That all changed two weeks ago at North Wilkesboro when Wood became the "veteran" driver who helped coach many of the Roush "Race for the Ride" candidates through their laps at the 5/8-mile oval.

Wood was responsible for setting-up both of the trucks used for testing to make sure the two trucks were as equal as possible. Then he offered to take over the role of flagman so he could get a good view of each driver's line around North Wilkesboro. Wood coached the drivers through their practice laps, instructing them if they were braking too soon in the corners, or not hitting their marks. He gave them advice on how to turn a better lap, and what mistakes they should not make.

"I've been in those situations and I know the pressure and the stress they were feeling, and it's not a fun feeling," said Wood, driver of the No. 50 Roush Racing Ford F-150. "You are out there competing against 20 or 25 other guys who seem like your friends, but you are all trying to get the same job. I wanted to help them out a little and try to make it a little less stressful for them. This is a big opportunity for them and I really wanted each of them to do their best.

"Next Monday 10 of the drivers will be at Darlington for the final round. The pressure will be really intense for them, especially at a track as tough as Darlington. I've raced there twice, and will have one more race under by belt after Friday night's Craftsman Truck race, so I'll be happy to share my experience there with them. David Pearson was nice enough to spend a day with me testing at Darlington in 2002 before my first race there. Granted I don't have anywhere near the experience he does, but chances are I have more than any of the 10 finalists."

The final round of Roush's "Race for the Ride" will be Monday, November 15 at Darlington Raceway. Members of the media are welcome to attend, however it is not open to the public.

Roush Racing is a subsidiary of Livonia, Mich., based Roush Industries that operates nine motorsports teams; five in NASCAR Nextel Cup with drivers Mark Martin, Matt Kenseth, Kurt Busch, Greg Biffle and Carl Edwards, two in the Busch Series with Martin, Kenseth and Biffle, and two in the Craftsman Truck Series with drivers Jon Wood and Edwards. For sponsorship inquiries, contact John Miller, Roush Racing, (704) 720-4600.

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About this article
Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Matt Kenseth , Greg Biffle , Kurt Busch , Jon Wood , Carl Edwards , Mark Martin , David Pearson