NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES
BASS PRO SHOPS NRA NIGHT RACE
BRISTOL MOTOR SPEEDWAY
TEAM CHEVY DRIVER PRESS CONF. TRANSCRIPT
AUGUST 19, 2016
AUSTIN DILLON, NO. 3 DOW/GREAT STUFF CHEVROLET SS, met with members of the media at Bristol Motor Speedway and discussed the potential of making his first Sprint Cup Series chase, his up-coming 3-on-3 charity basketball tournament and many other topics. Full Transcript:
YOU ARE ON PACE TO MAKE YOUR FIRST CHASE FOR THE NASCAR SPRINT CUP THIS SEASON. TALK ABOUT HOW YOUR TEAM WILL APPROACH THE NEXT THREE RACES AND OVERALL HOW YOU FEEL LIKE YOUR SEASON HAS GONE:
“Well, I feel like we’ve had a solid season to this point, a couple of up’s and down’s throughout, but overall I’m pleased with the speed and the direction of our cars. Pocono was a highlight this year. I felt like we had a car that could win a race. I think we are heading in the right direction. I wish we could have some races back. I think everybody does, but we do have some circled that we wish we could have back because we lost some big points on because of just failures and what not. Three races to go, well, four really, I’m feeling pretty confident in where we are at and the direction, like I said where we are headed. Want to have a solid run here in Bristol to kind of get to these last three.”
HOW DO YOU VIEW WHERE YOU ARE IN POINTS RIGHT NOW?
“I think we have to be aggressive. Anytime you play defense and you start playing that game it seems to hurt you. I try and lean on some of my past of Xfinity championship and Truck championship to figure out I think the best one to lean on is the Xfinity championship. We were kind of playing from behind there the last six races or so against Sam Hornish and we were able to really string together some really solid runs, top-five’s. Four to go, just got to look at it, finish in the top 10 and I think we are solid four races, four top 10’s that would be a great goal. We have a little leeway right there, top 15, but I think top 10 would take us home.”
TALK ABOUT YOUR 3 ON 3 BASKETBALL GAME COMING UP:
“Yeah, everybody does golf and I always wanted to try something different last year and it seemed to be successful kind of the same format as golf, but just playing a different sport. We’ve got a good line-up this year. I’ve been working hard on trying to get different celebrities from different realms. Got Tyler Farr, Chris Lane, Colt Ford, got a magician, Carl Michael and a football player Will Witherspoon, a lot of different guys from different sports. I’m excited about it. I’ve got different college basketball players coming to play so there will be some dunks. Joey Logano is now a coach. He said he would rather not play, but he feels like he could coach so I got him in there. I’ve got to thank him; he has got his own team there. I’m excited about that. Denny Hamlin will be there. I’m trying to talk in a couple of other guys, but for some reason every time I get responses, ‘have you seen me play basketball?’ I told them I would put good players around them and hopefully I can get more to come. I talked to Jimmie (Johnson) and Kyle (Busch) and different people, so we will see what we can get. I’ve got a good line-up so far and we’ve got enough for 16 teams. That is pretty solid and it’s at the LJVM Coliseum on August 31st in Winston-Salem (NC). I want to invite all you guys out there and have a good time. There is an open bar out back so we will have some fun.”
WITH THE WEATHER THE WAY IT’S BEEN DO YOU HOPE IT KEEPS RAINING OR DO YOU REALLY WANT TO GET SOME PRACTICE IN?
“I think everybody wants to get in a little practice to see where their cars are for sure. And with the bottom line being a little more predominant this time, quite a bit more yesterday, I would like to get the Cup cars out there for at least one practice. Sometimes you get too much practice and you can throw yourself off. I would like an hour for sure. I think our cars have stepped up, so I would like to go qualify also and see where we are at. If not, we are starting in 13th and we can do it from there and have a solid day. We are sitting in a good position either way, but I would like to have an hour or two of practice.”
LET’S ASSUME YOU MAKE THE CHASE HOW DO YOU ATTACK THAT FIRST SEGMENT?
“I think we attack it with no limits. One thing on our mind is to win races and we’ve got to do that. I actually feel like we have a good shot of winning one of these last four. We’ve got two of the four circled and never know what can happen at the other two. For us, it’s just throwing everything at it, whatever we can to get to the next round each time. I really feel like there is a bunch of good races in the Chase for me. If you look last year we had some really solid runs at the end of last year in the Chase. I just want to get in there and battle it out. I feel like there are a lot of 1.5-miles that play to where we have been good at this year in the Chase. Then the short tracks that are in it are places that I’ve run well too, New Hampshire, Martinsville, those two places are solid. I like the places that we go in the Chase.”
HOW CLOSE DO YOU THINK YOU ARE TO YOUR FIRST CUP SERIES WIN? TALK ABOUT THE HISTORY OF THE BRISTOL NIGHT RACE WITH THE NO. 3 CAR HERE WHAT DOES THIS RACE MEAN TO YOU?
“This place is always special. You come here and there is nothing like it walking down into this place and kind of get jacked up coming in here and want to run well. Obviously, the history has a lot to do with that. I like what the track is doing with trying to make that bottom line come in. I think that is good. I think they have already kind of started without what they are doing. I think what they did to just make the track smoother down there, when you see that stuff come up I still think there is going to be a bottom groove somewhat. It’s going to be a fun and interesting race. I’m looking forward to seeing how it plays out and hopefully you see some of that old-school bottom style driving. Then past that the other question was winning a race, yeah, I thought Pocono was probably our best race this year other than just the finishing part of it due to weather and just some small things that we made mistakes on that we could have done better. Speed wise that was my favorite car we’ve had. We’ve got something coming similar just like that car to Michigan. So, I’m looking forward to getting there.”
WHAT WOULD IT MEAN TO RACE AGAINST YOUR BROTHER IN THE CUP SERIES?
“Well I think it would be great. I think it will push me and it will help our organization. He has a lot of fire in him and hopefully that happens. I would love to see him out there. That is my little brother, man, I want him in there.”
WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON MICHIGAN AND THE EVEN LOWER DOWNFORCE PACKAGE?
“I enjoyed it the first time. I think there were some things that we could do a little better. I thought I heard that they were putting rubber down there too in the top lane or something I heard that, but that should be interesting if they did the same thing to Michigan. So if it widens out a little bit that would be something to really enjoy. I’m looking forward to it. Looking forward to the challenge and I think we can build on what we did the first race.