Q and A with Randy Fuller

Photo courtesy of NASCAR Media Group
Randy Fuller, left, stand with NASCAR reporter Bob Pockrass on pit road at Michigan International 
Speedway in August 2006.


By Dominic Aragon
Editor
November 19, 2015
daragon@theracingexperts.net


You might have seen him on TV at one time or another around Carl Edwards. You might have seen around Edwards in the garage area or outside the media center at a racetrack near you.

He’s been working with the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series veteran since virtually the beginning of his Sprint Cup career, and it is his job to ensure that his schedule on-and-off the racetrack runs as smooth as possible.


For those that may not know who Randy Fuller is, who are you and what do you do?

“I’m currently with Carl Edwards, I do his P.R., scheduling, some of his business stuff. I’m retired from the Air Force after 26 years, and I’m originally from upstate New York.”


Photo courtesy of NASCAR Media Group

Randy Fuller and Carl Edwards pose for a photo at Nashville Superspeedway in March 2008.


How did you first meet Carl Edwards and how did you end up becoming his public relations person?

“That’s a great question. I was in the Air Force, and I used to run the Air Force sponsorship with the 21 car. So I had met Jack Roush through that because at that time, that was a satellite team for Roush.

“They found out I was going to retire. I was down in Texas, and the president of Roush at the time calls up and says ‘Hey Randy, we heard you were going to retire; we’ve got this up-and-coming driver, Carl Edwards, is in the Truck Series, and we’d like to find someone with your experience to work with him, would you be interested.’

“I said ‘I’d be crazy to not at least meet him.’ So I flew from San Antonio, that’s where I was at the time, in to Charlotte, and I met with Jack Roush and Geoff Smith, the 

president of Roush at the time, and then with Carl Edwards.

“I remember having the meeting, and flying back to San Antonio that night. I go ‘Man, I’d be crazy to not at least give this a try. I’m going to retire anyway, I need a job.’ I remember calling my wife and saying ‘Hey, I’m going to give this a shot for a year, and see if it works out.’

“So, I retired from the Air Force, I moved to Charlotte, and 11 years later, I’m still with Carl.”


Working Carl’s P.R., is there such thing as a typical week?

“The thing that consumes the most time is doing [Carl’s] schedule. In our case, we have several sponsors, and then all the NASCAR obligations. You put all those together and that’s what takes most of your time.

“I’d say we travel on a Thursday, and then we get to the track and do all the track stuff (practice, qualifying).

“Then we’ll get back, and say Monday—I work from home, but you’re still answering all the phone calls and media obligations.

“Tuesday is almost meetings all day long, so you really don’t get anything done… You’re really working two-to-three weeks out.

“You’ve got to plug in everything minute-by-minute, so a lot of people come to you late, and they want to get some time, say like on a Saturday, but you’ve already locked up that time with him, so that’s probably one of the hardest parts; plugging in time to make sure there’s an equal balance between the sponsor, media, NASCAR and the track.”


Photo by Benjamin Palmer
/TheRacingExperts.com

Carl Edwards races at Phoenix International Raceway in March 2014.

 When Carl made the switch to Joe Gibbs Racing, how was that transition for you?


“That’s a real good question. Well, Roush was real good on the back side of it. We spent ten years there, so the transition was pretty easy. They just said when I got to JGR, your job’s to do the same thing with Carl, so it was the exact same job.

“The people were great to work with, it’s a great company. On both sides of it, it’s been an easy, easy transition.”


At the racetrack, do some fans come up to you and say maybe ‘Hey, I’ve seen you before’?

“It’s amazing. You do this job long enough, I think what they see is that you’re with a driver and they start associating you with that driver. And I guess they really know you.

“I could go out there and I guarantee you, several of the fans, after all these years, if they’re Carl fans, know me too. I think that would be true with any P.R. person that has been with a driver for any period of time.

“Bottom line, it’s all about the fans anyways, so gotta keep them happy, and I’m glad they like us.”


How long do you see yourself doing this? Do you think you’ll be with Carl the whole tenure of his Cup career?

“Well, I know that’s his plan, I’m not sure what my plan is. I do it year-by-year, just to be honest.

“But I’m enjoying myself. I’m retired from the Air Force, and I could go play golf tomorrow and not do anything if I want, but because I do enjoy myself—I really do enjoy working at Joe Gibbs Racing, I enjoy working with Carl, and I enjoy doing this.

“As long as I like it, I’ll do it. I’m sure there’s going to be one day that I say ‘Hey, it’s time to go,’ but right now, everything’s good.”


Photo by Brian DeGruchy
/TheRacingExperts.com

Carl Edwards addresses the media at Kansas Speedway in October 2015.

And, you’ll be back in 2016?

“That, I don’t know. But if I’m answering that question now, I’d say yes.”


And, is there anything else you’d like to share with us that maybe fans should know about you or Carl Edwards?

“Well, we just both enjoy the sport and really enjoy the fans.”
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