What did your most recent win at Pocono mean for you?
“Well, it’s special anytime you win. For Tony Gibson (crew chief) to be out because of a lug nut issue, we had to overcome a lot. Johnny Klausmeier, our interim crew chief, our lead engineer, he stepped up and, when you do that, it makes you really feel that team comradery, that team chemistry and that team effort. It’s awesome to have a team that week-in and week-out can be competitive and can overcome adversity like that. It was our first win in the Sprint Cup Series for Monster Energy, and that was really special, as well.”
What makes Pocono so unique?
“Just the fact that it’s different in the way that each of the straightaways has its different length, the corners have their banking. It’s not a typical oval in that you get to shift at an oval track. It blends a lot of road-racing techniques into an oval technique.”
What is the one thing you know you are going to have to work on when you return to Pocono?
“The one thing you know is shifting. You have to work on that. But, each time we go back, the setups change so rapidly that you have to find the right setup to gain the speed, whether it’s turn one, turn two or turn three. Each time there, you have to challenge the track and the car’s technology.”
Of the three turns, which is the most important to you, and why?
“It’s weird, I’ve had winning cars there a few different times and turn two always feels the best when my car has a chance to go to victory lane. But, I think turn three, if you are able to pass cars and maneuver around them, you’ve got to get a good run off turn three to be ready to pass them in turn one. All of them are important. You can’t exclude one from another.”
Last time at Pocono, the restarts were crazy to watch. How were they from the driver’s seat?
“Yeah, restarts at Pocono are always crazy, two-wide, three-wide, five-wide. If the guy in front of you doesn’t get going, do you challenge him to the inside or to the outside? Do you push him? But, you’ve got to watch in the mirror if guys get a run on you because they will swallow you up quick and, the next thing you know, you are in the wrong groove getting into turn one.”