NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES
AAA TEXAS 500
TEXAS MOTOR SPEEDWAY
TEAM CHEVY DRIVER PRESS CONFERENCE TRANSCRIPT
NOVEMBER 4, 2011
RICHARD CHILDRESS, TEAM OWNER OF RICHARD CHILDRESS RACING (RCR) met with media following the announcement that RCR and AdvoCare, an award-winning premier health and wellness company, have entered into a partnership for the company to be the primary sponsor of the No. 3 AdvoCare Chevrolet Impala driven by Austin Dillon for 20 races in the 2012 NASCAR Nationwide Series season. Highlights:
WHAT DID YOU SEE IN AUSTIN DILLON THAT MADE YOU DECIDE IS WAS READY TO MOVE TO THE NEXT LEVEL?
“I’ve watched him run at some other tracks with the Nationwide guys and run with some of the Cup guys in that series with Carl (Edwards) and Kyle (Busch); I think he ran four races and had two or three top-five’s out of it, which is pretty remarkable for a young kid coming in. And he handles himself well and that’s the biggest thing; we just feel now it’s ready for him to take the next step; we felt we had a plan two years in the Truck Series and if he proved himself in the Truck Series, then we’d move him forward.”
DO YOU FEEL IT WOULD BE PRETTY OBVIOUS IF HE WASN’T READY AND THAT YOU COULD TELL?
“Yes. If we didn’t think he was ready, we wouldn’t be moving him up. Although he is our grandson, we wouldn’t move him if I didn’t think he could go out and represent AdvoCare and do a good job in the Nationwide Series.”
IS IT MORE CHALLENGING TO BE CAR OWNER AND GRANDFATHER AS AUSTIN MOVES UP TO EACH LEVEL, OR DOES IT MAKE IT EASIER?
“It’s always a little more challenging when you step-up from the driver and from the grandfather side; from the owner’s side, we just expect him to go out and perform. But from the grandfather’s side, you just want him to be safe.”
HOW WILL YOU SHIFT YOUR TEAMS AROUND FOR NEXT YEAR? THERE WAS SOME TALK THIS WEEK THAT JEFF BURTON WILL HAVE A NEW CREW CHIEF; WHERE ARE YOU IN THAT PROCESS?
“Believe me, we’ve done a lot of research. We’re watching a lot and looking a lot at the No. 2 and the No. 33 Nationwide teams next year and looking at Ty (Dillon) and what we’re going to do with him next year. There have not been any final decisions made at all. I know there were some rumors about who was going where and what Luke (Lambert, crew chief No. 31) was going to do. We don’t know where anyone is (going or staying). We’ve got a lot of ideas and a lot of plans but they can change in a moment’s notice because we don’t even know where we’re going to be with people yet.”
ON MARK MARTIN’S ANNOUNCEMENT TO GO WITH MICHAEL WALTRIP NEXT YEAR
“Mark loves what he does. I’ve talked to Mark. Mark is not doing it for the money; he loves it because he loves to race. I think he’ll go over there and be competitive and I think that’s what he really wants to do.”
WITH THREE RACES TO GO IN THE CHASE FOR THE NASCAR SPRINT CUP, EVERYBODY IS TALKING ABOUT CARL EDWARDS AND TONY STEWART, BUT NOT SO MUCH ABOUT YOUR DRIVER, KEVIN HARVICK
“Well we hope they keep talking about them two and let us kind of slip in there. But we haven’t gave up on it yet. We’re still going to fight all the way until we’re mathematically out of it. Anything can happen; just like what happened to us in Talladega. Talladega is what took us out of it. It could happen just as easily the other way.”
GOING INTO HOMESTEAD, IT USED TO BE THAT YOU WOULD NEED TO BE WITHIN 30 POINTS OF THE LEAD TO HAVE A CHANCE TO WIN THE CHAMPIONSHIP. WITH THE NEW POINT SYSTEM, WHERE DO YOU THINK YOU NEED TO BE WITH KEVIN HARVICK?
“I think you’ve got to be within five or six points; or maybe seven; barring that the competitors don’t have a problem. If you’re going to have to race them for it, you’re going to have to be able to go out and win the race and them finish fifth, sixth, or seventh; something like that.”
YOU’VE SEEN CARL EDWARDS HAVE TWO BAD WEEKENDS WITH PRETTY MIRACULOUS FINISHES; AND TONY STEWART HAD A MIRACULOUS FINISH LAST WEEKEND. AND THEN MATT KENSETH SEEMS TO HAVE LOST THE CHAMPIONSHIP IN THE LAST 30 LAPS. WHAT’S YOUR GUT FEELING ON THIS CHAMPIONSHIP?
“I think it’s going to come down to the last race. We’re out of Mulligans. If we have another Mulligan, we’re out of the championship. And a couple of those guys haven’t really had a Mulligan yet. Talladega was the one that hurt us but we were there racing and trying to win the race and we got caught up in somebody else’s wreck.”
DO YOU THINK IT’S TIME FOR THE TOP TWO DRIVERS TO HAVE SOME BAD LUCK?
“No, I think if they just have long days like they’ve had at a couple of tracks, we could be right back in it. Tony (Stewart) was out of it what, two weeks ago? He’s back in it.”
IS THERE ANY SCENARIO YOU SEE ON THE NO. 3 RETURNING TO THE SPRINT CUP SERIES?
“Not really; not to stylize No. 3. Dale (Earnhardt) made that thing famous. We don’t have any plans of running it. The No. 3 in the Truck Series was Mike Skinner ran it. The No. 3 in Nationwide, although Dale run it some. But Dale Junior was the one that ran it to make it famous in the Nationwide. Dale Sr. made it famous in the Cup side. We don’t have any intentions of running that in the Cup Series.”
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