TOYOTA NASCAR Nationwide Series Test Day 5 Daytona International Speedway January 22, 2008 LAERTE ZATTA, NNS and NCTS Program Manager, TRD, U.S.A. (Toyota Racing Development) How beneficial has this test been for the entire Toyota Nationwide...
TOYOTA NASCAR Nationwide Series Test
Daytona International Speedway
January 22, 2008
LAERTE ZATTA, NNS and NCTS Program Manager, TRD, U.S.A. (Toyota Racing Development)
How beneficial has this test been for the entire Toyota Nationwide Series program? "These five days at Daytona have been extremely beneficial for all of the Toyota Nationwide Series teams as well as TRD (Toyota Racing Development). We are utilizing a brand-new engine in the series in 2008, and we have been working tirelessly to give the teams the best possible product to bring back here in February for the race. We'll take the information that we learned here back to our shop, do some work in the wind tunnel, and hopefully make some gains so all of the Toyota teams can benefit. We want to come back here in a few weeks with more power than how we left this test, and hopefully have all of the Camrys there at the end, competing for the win."
DAVID REUTIMANN, No. 99 Aaron's Dream Machine Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing
Do you think running both the Sprint Cup Series and Nationwide Series can tire you at the end of the season? "You train during the off-season to try to stay strong physically. It's just racing. The opportunity to race a car, and the opportunity to win races -- even if you are a little bit tired -- gets you pretty excited to get in the car, regardless of what series you run in."
How difficult will it be for you to go from the Cup Series car to the Nationwide Series car this season? "There aren't that many differences here. There may be other race tracks that we go to where the differences will be an adjustment from one car to another. Here, they drive a little bit different. In the Cup car, you're down on the bump stops for the most part, so the ride is not exactly what you call smooth, but Daytona is not a really smooth place. It's got character. That's what makes it Daytona. It's not that much of an adjustment here as it will be at some other places."
MICHAEL McDOWELL, No. 00 Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing
Can you compare Daytona in the Nationwide Series car to anything you've driven before? "This place is so much different than Talladega because of the bumps. The car really has to be working good here. I don't have a whole lot of experience here -- just one race in the ARCA car. I'm just running out there trying to get comfortable. Running in the draft and doing single-car runs. Getting out in the draft is fun. Sometimes, running by yourself gets a little tedious, so getting out there with a bunch of guys is fun. I'm just trying to figure out what the car wants and get comfortable in the draft."
How important is seat time at these tracks, regardless of what type of car you're in? "Anytime I can drive anything is good. It's just a learning process. Testing here at Daytona helps a lot, just getting seat time. There's a definite technique and maturity you have to bring to these tracks and something that you can only learn with time. I just want to run as many laps as I can while I'm here. We're going to announce something up at the shop tomorrow (Wednesday) night, which will definitely help me prepare for the season."
-credit: toyota motorsports