NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES
FOLDS OF HONOR QUIKTRIP 500
ATLANTA MOTOR SPEEDWAY
TEAM CHEVY DRIVER PRESS CONFERENCE TRANSCRIPT
FEBRUARY 26, 2015
KYLE LARSON, NO. 42 ENERGIZER CHEVROLET SS, met with members of the media at Atlanta Motor Speedway and discussed the opening session of the test, his outlook for this weekend’s race at Atlanta Motor Speedway and many other topics. Full Transcript:
TALK ABOUT YOUR CAR AND TALK ABOUT HOW THINGS WENT FOR YOU IN THE FIRST PART OF THIS TEST:
“We were all pretty anxious to get out there I think. This is really what I feel like is the start of our season because this is the majority of the size race tracks we run on. I was excited to get out there, first car out. The track had a lot of grip at first, so that is why Jamie (McMurray) and I are both up there I think. It was fast. I felt like the car really didn’t drive much different here than how it did with the old rules package. This track is pretty tough to run on anyway. The characteristics between the way the cars handled were about the same. That is good, nice that Chip Ganassi Racing is one-two after this first test. I hope we can carry this speed on throughout the rest of the weekend and rest of the year.”
DID YOU TRY THE ADJUSTABLE TRACK BAR AT ALL THAT YOU CAN WORK ON? HOW WAS THAT?
“Yeah, that last run I did. I had played with it before at other testing that we did at the end of last year. Really so far when I played with it I thought it affected my exit of the corner. Where I was hoping it would kind of free up my center of the corner. It didn’t really touch that just got my exit really loose, when I went up with the track bar. I would say I learned that kind of stuff and how far you can go with it. I think that will be a really neat tool that we get to use as driver. Because when I ran midgets and stuff like that we had shock adjusters. In winged sprint cars you have wing valve adjusters. It is nice that they allow us to put a little bit more into the driver’s hands.”
DO YOU HAVE TO TELL THE CREW CHIEF WHAT YOU ARE DOING WITH THAT ADJUSTMENT OR DO YOU JUST DO IT?
“I think they can see it right now during the test on the screen. Yeah, once we get done with today I will have to remind them how far I’m moving it up or down. We have a little gauge on our screen that tells us how far we are moving it. It is easy to keep track.”
WHERE DID YOU GUYS ELECT TO PUT THE SWITCH FOR THE TRACK BAR ADJUSTMENT AND HAS YOUR CREW CHIEF GIVEN YOU ANY INSTRUCTIONS OR ORDERS ON HOW MUCH YOU CAN USE IT?
“No, he hasn’t given me any order on how far or how much I use it. I think that is all up to me right now. Maybe once I start going too far with it he will crack the whip. My gauge is right next to my seat on my left side, down near my leg brace, kind of. It is easy access. I don’t know where other drivers have it, but that is where Jamie (McMurray) and I have ours.”
IS IT A DIAL?
“It’s just a switch. I push the switch forward to move it up and back to move it down.”
IN ADDITION TO WHAT YOU CAN DO WITH THE CAR INSIDE YOU ARE ALSO LOOKING AT A LOWER HORSEPOWER. DID THE CAR FEEL ANY DIFFERENT ON THE RACE TRACK BECAUSE OF THE CHANGE IN HORSEPOWER?
“I really didn’t notice anything. I thought it still came up to speed pretty well. Maybe it doesn’t carry to the end of the straightaway as hard as what it did before, but we have less downforce too, it still feels fast. Maybe once we get to like a Michigan or a track where we will probably run even more wide open now we will notice more. I really didn’t notice much difference between this year versus last year.”
GOING BACK TO THE TRACK BAR IS THAT SOMETHING YOU ANTICIPATE ADJUSTING SOME AS YOU GO IN A TIRE RUN OR DURING CAUTION OR TUNING YOURSELF UP FOR A GREEN/WHITE/CHECKERED? HOW DO YOU EXPECT TO USE IT DURING A RACE?
“Yeah, for sure, when I ran some testing with it at the end of last year I would do a 30 lap run and I would adjust it quite a bit. It just depends on how your car is handling. If your car is really good you might not touch it that much. As far as green/white/checkered and things like that I definitely think that will come into play. Where you either move it up or down or whatever it may be to get the most speed out of your car at the end.”
DOES THIS MEAN WE WON’T SEE CREW MEMBERS FOOLING WITH THE TRACK BAR ADJUSTMENT DURING PIT STOPS?
“Well I think they can still make wedge adjustments and things like that. I think we will do the track bar ourselves. Yeah, I mean fewer mistakes on pit road probably since they will be doing fewer things. It is easier for us just to move a switch than for them to crank some rounds in it.”
EVERYBODY SAYS THAT THIS COULD BE THE WEEKEND THAT YOU SCORE YOUR FIRST CUP VICTORY DO YOU THINK THAT THIS IS THE PLACE THAT YOU CAN DO IT AT? ALSO, LAST NIGHT YOU WENT TO THE SACRAMENTO GAME CAN YOU TALK A LITTLE ABOUT THAT?
“Yeah, I don’t know. I would like to win anywhere. This is our next race so I would definitely like to win. I enjoy the 1.5-mile tracks the best, but (Kevin) Harvick is really good here. He will probably be the one to beat.
“As far as the Sacramento King’s game, me and Katelyn (girlfriend) and Owen (son) we went out there for her grandmother’s funeral. So got to spend a couple of days out there and then last night I had a red-eye (flight). The (Sacramento) King’s arena is really close to the airport. I just rounded up a few of my friends and my dad. We got some tickets and went to the King’s game. It’s fun. I hadn’t been there to a King’s game in probably six or seven years. It was cool to go back and watch them win. I made my flight so I made it here.”
WERE YOU TIRED FROM THE RED-EYE (FLIGHT)?
“No, I don’t remember taking off and I barely remembering landing. I slept great. Then I drove here and slept in until about 11:30 a.m.”
HOW DO YOU DEAL WITH THE GRIND OF WEEK AFTER WEEK? THE SEASON IS SO LONG WHAT ARE SOME OF THE LITTLE THINGS YOU USE TO COPE AND KEEP YOUR FOCUS?
“I think it’s not too much of a grind for me because when I was 18, 19 years old I was racing 120 races a year; cruising up and down the road going to the next sprint car track. At least with our schedule we get to go home every week. And we get to sleep in our second home here at the race track. It’s not too bad at all. I enjoy racing as much as I can. I wish our off-season was shorter. Not too much of a grind unless you are not running well out on the track. Just make sure you have fun each week and enjoy racing and never think of it as a job and it will be fun.”
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