Brad Coleman, an 18-year-old development driver for Brewco Motorsports, will make his second career Busch Series start this weekend at Kansas Speedway behind the wheel of the No. 66 Ford Fusion. Coleman, who won the pole and finished third in the...
Brad Coleman, an 18-year-old development driver for Brewco Motorsports, will make his second career Busch Series start this weekend at Kansas Speedway behind the wheel of the No. 66 Ford Fusion. Coleman, who won the pole and finished third in the ARCA race at Kansas in July, has recorded nine ARCA starts, compiling eight top-five finishes that includes a victory at Kentucky Speedway. Coleman credits playing video games for his early-career success and commented on how the simulators transfer to on-track performance.
BRAD COLEMAN-66-Cub Cadet Ford Fusion
YOU HAVE RISEN THROUGH THE STOCK CAR RANKS RATHER QUICKLY, MAKING YOUR ARCA DEBUT AND NASCAR DEBUT THIS SEASON. HAS THIS BEEN A WHIRLWIND YEAR FOR YOU? "It has been a great year for us. We came into this year expecting to get some top 10s in ARCA and get a couple of Busch races under our belt, but we came in and got second in our first ARCA race and top fives pretty much every single race, so we're just having a phenomenal year. I have a great team with great resources behind me. This Busch race this weekend, I'm really looking forward to it. This will be my second Busch race. The first Busch race, I had a solid run at Nashville. We came into the pits and then the caution came out after we exited so we lost two laps, so we're looking to have a really good race here."
HAVE YOU EXCEEDED YOUR EXPECTATIONS THIS YEAR AS YOU PREPARE TO START YOUR SECOND BUSCH RACE? "We knew we'd be making some Busch starts, so we expected to do it, but we didn't expect to do as well as we have just in general. Getting three poles in ARCA and all of top fives has just been amazing."
YOU ARE PART OF THE NEXT GENERATION OF DRIVERS THAT USE VIDEO GAMES TO GET ACCLIMATED TO RACE TRACKS. DO THEY REALLY HELP TO LEARN THE INS AND OUT OF A PARTICULAR TRACK? "They definitely help. The video games are phenomenal. The tracks are so realistic and the cars are so realistic, you don't get the physical G-force feel of it, but you get the sight and hand-eye coordination down for what grooves I want to take and what happens during the race. You can do full-simulation races, and you race other competitors and see where you can pass or where you can't pass."
ARE THE SIGHTLINES FROM INSIDE THE COCKPIT OF THE CAR SIMILAR TO WHAT YOU SEE IN THE COMPUTER SIMULATORS? "My first ever time to actually compare the video game to a race track was the ARCA Nashville race, my first one, and I went out there and I was running identical times to the one on the computer. It's so realistic and the computer helped me so much because I knew exactly when to turn and when to get on the gas and all that. It's so realistic that they have different color concrete patches for Nashville, and they've mapped it out to the exact spots where they are on the real track. That helps you establish the points where you lift, but they also have buildings away from the track that you can see, and sometimes you can use those as markers."
HAVE YOU RACED ON THE COMPUTER AGAINST ANY NEXTEL CUP DRIVERS? "I haven't raced with any of the Cup drivers. I've been wanting to do that to see what it's like to race against those guys. It would be a lot of fun. There are a couple of guys at the Brewco shop that do it avidly and they're really good at it, so they're great competition to practice on, so I race with them a lot."
YOU ARE RACING FOR A TEAM THAT HAS HAD A NUMBER OF NEXTEL CUP DRIVERS BEHIND THE WHEEL OF THE CAR THIS SEASON. WHAT ARE REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS FOR YOU THIS WEEKEND? "Every time I go out there I'm thinking I want to win. This is a good car and Newt (Moore) is a great, race-winning crew chief. He's had vast experience working with great drivers, and great drivers have driven this car, so I'm looking forward to getting into it. I definitely think we have a strong chance to get in the top 10 here. This is the car the Greg Biffle drove here last year to a second-place finish, so I'm looking forward to using it."
YOU WERE BORN IN HOUSTON, TEXAS, BUT MOVED AROUND THE COUNTRY CHASING YOUR DREAM TO BECOME A RACE CAR DRIVER. DESCRIBE YOUR ROUTE TO NASCAR RACING? "First I moved to Colorado to live with Price Cobb and went around to all of the Toyota Atlantic races with him for the summers. Then I moved back to Houston and started doing the go-kart racing, and after go-kart racing I moved out to Danville, Virginia, where Price lived and where VIR (Virginia International Raceway) is and trained a lot out there in the open-wheel cars. I moved into stock car racing at South Boston and then moved to Martinsville to be closer to my high school. After graduating from high school, I moved to Kentucky a couple of months ago to be at Brewco."
HAVE THERE BEEN ANY DECISIONS MADE AS FAR AS YOUR RACING INVOLVEMENTS WITH BREWCO NEXT YEAR? "They've been great to me this year. We don't know about next year. They're still out there looking for sponsors, but any deal I get I'll be excited to look at it."
YOU EXPERIENCED RAPID SUCCESS IN THE ARCA SERIES. DO YOU FEEL THAT YOU'RE READY TO MAKE THE NEXT STEP IN YOUR RACING CAREER? "ARCA is a great series. Racing against Frank Kimmel and Steve Wallace, they're great drivers and they show what it's like to race in a bigger series, so it's a good series to start out in. I would do a couple of races in the ARCA Series if the plans involve that."
-credit: ford racing