MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES
GO BOWLING 400
TEAM CHEVY DRIVER PRESS CONF. TRANSCRIPT
MAY 12, 2017
JAMIE MCMURRAY, NO. 1 MCDONALD’S $1 ANY SIZE SOFT DRINK CHEVROLET SS met with media and discussed today’s practice sessions, his teammate Kyle Larson, Chip Ganassi Racing overall, the All-Star race next weekend, and more. Full Transcript:
ONCE AGAIN YOU SHOW UP AT THE RACE TRACK WITH SPEED. WALK US THROUGH YOUR PRACTICES TODAY AND WHAT YOU ARE ANTICIPATING FOR QUALIFYING TONIGHT AND FOR TOMORROW NIGHT’S RACE AT KANSAS
‘It was a little bit more eventful than I wish it would have been in practice. This race track is interesting and it’s been this way the last couple of years. The gray area of the track has a lot of grip until you get to that last car length from the wall. And it gets really dirty up there and kind of gives you a false sense of security. And, I think it happened to (teammate) Kyle (Larson). I haven’t talked to Kyle yet, But, I was just kind of moving up the race track. I was going to make a long run there and I got a little bit too high and got loose and ended up getting into the wall. It didn’t tear our car up, but it did kill about 20 minutes of practice for us that we needed for race trim. So, we switched over to qualifying trim. The car was pretty good in qualifying trim. Both of our cars are fast again this weekend and I feel good about going into qualifying and I think we’ll be fine in the race.”
ON BEING FROM MISSOURI, NOW WITH CARL EDWARDS OUT OF THE PICTURE IS IT THE RACE BETWEEN YOU AND CLINT BOWYER TO SEE WHO CAN WIN HERE AND CLAIM THIS AS YOUR HOME TRACK VICTORY?
“I feel like Carl and Clint play that up more than what I do. I grew up in Missouri and that’s always going to be my hometown, but I’ve lived in North Carolina for 20 years now, or longer than that. And, that’s my home and that’s where my kids are from and I would love to win at Kansas Speedway, but I want to win there because it’s where we race this weekend, not necessarily because I grew up 200 miles south of here. So, I’m going to let Clint have that ‘hometown track thing’ and I’m just going to be Jamie.”
WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNED FROM KYLE LARSON? A LOT OF YOUNG DRIVERS TALK ABOUT LEARNING FROM THE VETERANS, BUT WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNED FROM HIM?
“Well, that one thing that I have learned from Kyle is I grew up working on cars and always trying to make the car better and drive better and try to make the chassis handle better. And, Kyle grew up in a totally different era where you just drive the car. And if the car’s not good, you move your line around and I feel like he’s somewhat opened my eyes in that we’re not always going to get the car perfect. And if the car’s not perfect, then maybe search around and see if maybe you can figure something out. I’ve learned a lot of things from him mainly probably in video games, but I have learned some things on the track as well.”
NEXT WEEK IS THE ALL-STAR RACE. YOU ARE A PAST WINNER THERE. THEY’VE CHANGED THINGS AROUND ON THE FORMAT AND THEY’VE GOT SOFTER TIRES. HAVE YOU WORKED OUT A STRATEGY TO WIN THAT RACE AGAIN? HOW ARE THOSE SOFT TIRES GOING TO WORK OUT?
“I have to be honest, I haven’t even read the rules for the All-Star race yet, That’s something I was going to look at on Monday. I know that they’ve changed the format a little bit. The thing I will tell you about soft tires is that soft tires, in my experience at testing, aren’t always faster. So, I don’t know that there is a guarantee there. I don’t think they’ve done a test there at least. Sometimes when you put softer tires on it messes up the balance of your car. And so it’s not a guaranteed faster lap. We did a tire test just this week at Kentucky and we tried a couple of softer compounds. Some of them were faster. Some of them were slower. So, I think that’s going to be interesting to see if the softer tire actually is quicker or do you not want that? I don’t know the rules enough to know if you have to both of them in the race. So, yeah, it’s going to be interesting next weekend.”
TALK ABOUT THE RESURGENCE OF CHIP GANASSI RACING AND WHAT YOU ARE LOOKING TO WORK ON FROM THIS POINT FORWARD:
“Well I think the biggest thing for our group right now is to not be content. It’s been years in the making to get every department at our race shop better and it’s taken everyone that has worked there their ideas and getting the cars faster. I think what I hear a lot at the shop right now is just not to be content to continue to try to develop and make the cars quicker. We did a test at Kentucky this week and I was so impressed when I showed up because our car had a lot of new parts on it. It had so many censors on it that they couldn’t even take all the data at one time. We were having to only use some of the censors for certain runs and then switch them out because there weren’t enough ports and there are a lot of ports. There is a lot of ways to take data on a car. But our whole test, with the exception of the stuff we did for Goodyear, was all about developing and trying to get the cars better. I thought that just listening to Matt (McCall, crew chief) and the engineers talk that we learned a few things. It was a great test. Hopefully, we can implement some of those pieces on our cars here in the next few weeks and continue to get better.”
“Well, if he looks at 30, I’m going to say 15, I’m just going to go out on a limb here, but honestly I don’t know. I don’t have anything to do with that and I’m not sure what they have done.”
HOW MUCH DO YOU GUYS WORK TOGETHER TO GET YOU A WIN AND GET YOU QUALIFIED FOR THE PLAYOFFS? OR IS IT TOO EARLY IN THE SEASON TO START THINKING THAT WAY?
“Yeah, I don’t know that there… with the exception of maybe being at a plate race last weekend, you really can’t work together. I would never expect Kyle (Larson) if I’m running second to pull over and let me win to lock me in. Nor, do I think he would kind of do that. But, I mean the whole working together is just kind of throughout the weekend and it’s not as much with Kyle and I, I think as it is with the teams. Kyle did come over to me this weekend, probably the first time all year because of the issues they had in practice and when we went out and made our first mock qualifying run we were first. He came over and just kind of asked me what I thought and what did the car feel like. There is a little bit of that, but for the most part it’s about the team and just developing better cars each weekend.”