CHASE FOR THE NASCAR SPRINT CUP
ROUND 4 OF 10
BANK OF AMERICA 500
CHARLOTTE MOTOR SPEEDWAY
TEAM CHEVY DRIVER PRESS CONF. TRANSCRIPT
OCTOBER 6, 2016
AUSTIN DILLON, NO. 3 DOW COATING MATERIALS CHEVROLET SS, met with members of the media to discuss making it through the first round of the Chase, the importance of winning early in the Round of 12 and many other topics. Full Transcript:
YOU SURVIVED THE FIRST ROUND OF THE CHASE ADVANCING TO THE ROUND OF 12 THIS WEEKEND AT CHARLOTTE. TALK ABOUT THE OPPORTUNITY YOU HAVE MAKING IT TO THIS ROUND AND RACING HERE AT CHARLOTTE MOTOR SPEEDWAY:
“I’m just excited. It is a great opportunity for us. Home track here, I feel like I’ve had some success in the past and it is one of my better tracks as far as my average finish. I’m comfortable here. Actually the next three races are some of my favorite tracks including Talladega; it’s been good for me. I’m in a really good mood and just excited to get the weekend started.”
HOW IMPORTANT IS IT TO WIN ONE OF THESE FIRST TWO RACES SO YOU DON’T HAVE TO COUNT ON A GOOD FINISH AT TALLADEGA?
“I think it’s important, but I think you can still have a really good finish at Talladega. There is obviously a lot that goes into it with luck and what have you. But there are ways to be smart at Superspeedways and try if you are in a good point’s position when you get there. I mean a win obviously takes the pressure off, but you saw what we were able to do in the last round. I mean it’s got to be a tighter finishing average than what it took last round, but I still feel like with no points buffer from the guys that have won races you still got to be smart the next three races, the next two really. Risking it for a win or just having a solid point’s day can make or break it. It’s still a little bit of a risk if you have to go… if you’ve got the opportunity to win obviously it’s going to make you feel great. You can sit and relax when you get to Talladega. A good point’s day the next two weeks will also make you feel good going into Talladega.”
WHEN YOU APPROACH THESE RACES AND THIS CHASE IN GENERAL ARE YOU A GUY WHO IS A GLASS HALF EMPTY GUY AND THINK WHAT MIGHT HAPPEN OR A HALF FULL GUY WHO THINKS WHAT YOU CAN DO AT A SPECIFIC TRACK OR THROUGH THE COURSE OF THE CHASE?
“I definitely don’t think probably the ‘what might happen’. I want to think what we can do and I have confidence in our team that we can turn some heads, especially the next three weeks. Last weekend was big. We had a lot of speed in that car. With speed and what we’ve been able to do all year with what I feel like has not been the fastest cars, being able to finish and the consistency part of it and trying to lower the mistakes. I think you tie that with the speed of the car we had last weekend and hopefully we show it again this weekend. We can really upset some guys in this round.”
WHAT DO YOU THINK IT MEANT TO THE ORGANIZATION FOR YOU TO ADVANCE?
“I think it definitely was uplifting for RCR in general. I had multiple guys come up to me in the shop this week telling me how proud they were and proud to be a part of RCR. They feel like we are doing a good job of putting the effort behind everything right now and really taking advantage of this opportunity that we have. It’s a great opportunity. Right now we are tied for first in the points. We haven’t been there all year long and this is just a great opportunity for the whole company in general. You saw what Ryan Newman was able to do a couple of years ago and go to Homestead. Luke Lambert (crew chief for Ryan Newman) came up to me after the race and said ‘man you guys are built for this just like we made our run. I hope we can back it up and keep ourselves relevant.”
YOU’VE HAD EXPERIENCE RUNNING FOR CHAMPIONSHIPS IN THE PAST DO YOU FIND THAT EXPERIENCE HAS HELPED YOU AT ALL?
“Sure, I think we’ve been to Homestead twice and raced for championships so I’ve had that feeling. Definitely last weekend was one of those sink or swim kind of feelings going into the race. We were able to accomplish, it felt like winning an Xfinity championship making it to the next round in the Chase. I feel like I’m comfortable in that situation and I’m comfortable because of the group we have at RCR and I feel like we can do this. I’m prepared for it. I like that situation. I know what it takes and I feel like it’s just going to be one of those things that is going to come to us, but we still have to perform when we have to perform.”
ARE YOU THE UNDERDOG IN THIS ROUND OF THE CHASE?
“Well, we have the least odds in (Las) Vegas right now I just heard that. I don’t know. I think so. I like this role because it puts the pressure on the guys that I guess are projected to make it to the next round, whatever projections mean. Because in racing I’ve learned real quick that it’s not like any other sport, I guess, because Draft Kings is really hard. You just never know what can happen in a race and you never know what the outcomes, there is so much that goes into every little piece and part of these cars. I’m confident in the company I drive for with RCR and the people around me, myself also that we can make strong finishes and that is what I’m confident about. I love the underdog role because that makes when we do knock people out it’s going to be fulfilling.“