MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES
CAMPING WORLD 400
TEAM CHEVY PRESS CONF. TRANSCRIPT
JUNE 29, 2019
DANIEL HEMRIC, NO. 8 LIBERTY NATIONAL CAMARO ZL1 Media Breakout Session Highlights:
DO YOU FEEL GOOD IN PARTICULAR ABOUT ANY OF THE TRACKS YOU HAVE COMING UP?
“It’s kind of a double-edge sword. I look at it and a lot of the tracks we go to, I feel confident in what I want and confident in what I need. You try to not lose faith in yourself through moments of struggle. Some of the places we’ve struggled the most at, it can get you down and maybe make you question what you’re doing. On the other side of it, you’ve got to know that you can have success and you just have to get everyone on the same page. Everyone on this 8 Team has been getting closer and closer to getting on the same page as the weeks have went by and that has made for greater success. I’m just trying to be more confident in the things I want and the things I need, as well as deciding as a group how to approach certain things that make a weekend what they are.”
WE ALL TALK ABOUT THE HISTORY OF DAYTONA BEING HELD ON INDEPENDENCE DAY WEEKEND. DO YOU ASSOCIATE JULY 4TH WITH THE DAYTONA RACE?
“Growing up, I was always going across the country going short track racing. I always felt like we were at a different place every year, depending who was having the bigger show. That week, we knew that there was a Super Speedway race and you would hang out at the house if you were in town to watch it.”
“I don’t really have a real mindset on it moving weekends either way. My entire life, watching Daytona in July, the timeframe just seemed right. But I was always going short track racing, so there wasn’t ever a real tradition in my family or my life. There is something special about being on one of the best stages on such a special weekend, but everything is evolving and changing. Change isn’t always bad.”
RCR HAS BEEN HAVING A LITTLE BIT OF A ROUGH YEAR, BUT YOU’RE QUALIFYING VERY WELL. I ASKED YOUR TEAMMATE, AUSTIN DILLON, WHAT IS IT GOING TO TAKE TO TURN THOSE QUALIFYING RESULTS INTO RACE RESULTS?
“It’s about having a better process and a better approach to what our cars need for the race. Austin (Dillon) has had a ton of experience at these places and I’m getting to the point where I feel like I’m getting a decent amount of experience as well. But it’s about figuring out what the package itself needs to qualify and race. It’s been a million dollar question all year for everyone, some weeks you see certain teams hitting on it better than others. A lot goes into that. The good thing is it’s not like we’re missing both sides of it. We can make the cars go fast, we can make the cars qualify good and we can make our cars race better. It’s about finding that balance.”
YOU’RE ABOUT HALFWAY THROUGH YOUR ROOKIE SEASON NOW. HOW IS IT BEING IN THE CUP GARAGE NOW?
“It’s been good to finally feel like that’s my new normal. Earlier in the year, you got a lot of stuff going on and you’re getting pulled in a lot of different directions. You’re trying to put your best effort in to be the best you can be for your sponsors and your team. You can find yourself in situations where you are a bit overwhelmed. I think that with every week that has went by, you find that you belong here. It’s felt more and more like that as each week has went by and it finally does feel normal. Now, it’s about going to the racetrack and getting to work.”
THIS IS GOING TO BE THE FIRST TIME RACING THIS PACKAGE AT DAYTONA. WHAT DO YOU EXPECT?
“I think some of what we saw at Talladega, we’ll see again. I think you’ll see a lot more of the teams and their manufacturers working closer together, especially with Chevrolet. The handling is going to be so much bigger and so much more critical. You need to have handling at Talladega, but nowhere near what you have to have at Daytona.”
YOU RUN PRETTY GOOD AT DAYTONA. DO YOU LOOK AT IT AS YOUR CHANCE TO GET A WIN?
“I definitely think the opportunity is greater. I think what we did at Talladega and Speedway racing in general has never really been a huge strong suit for me, so it’s good to kind of get my feet on the ground.”
YOU’VE COME A LONG WAY, BUT STILL HAVEN’T REACHED VICTORY LANE IN ANY OF THE THREE SERIES. WHAT HAS THIS JOURNEY BEEN LIKE FOR YOU?
“You just have to keep building on your finishes and the opportunity to win will be there. That’s what I feel like I have to prove to myself coming through the ranks. I knew that when I got into the 14 truck in 2015 that it wasn’t a winning truck and our goal was to go run tenth, then try to go run eighth. Throughout the year, we got better and better with it. I knew we weren’t at the level of KBM, so it’s about managing those expectations and not trying to get more than what’s there as you progress. I don’t feel like I’ve yet to jump into something that has come off of a record-setting year as far as a team standpoint. I’m confident in what I came in, but I’ve had to grind it out and that’s what my career has been about. It’s been about grinding it out and help building the race teams I was with. To a point, I kind of enjoy that because I get to see the labor transpire into success.”