Doug Turnbull: Stewart-Haas Racing with no lack of story lines entering 2015
- Team co-owners Gene Haas and Tony Stewart say that the way they managed the personalities was to lay off and let everyone work in their own manner. Haas says that his decision to go to Formula 1 is appealing, because it is challenging and is an elite motorsport.
- Harvick said that in 2013 and before he was tired of going to work and he was revitalized for his 2014 campaign with then-new to him Stewart-Haas Racing. He thinks that there is a sense of responsibility for the sport, now that he is a champion. But he doesn't want to spend time soaking up accolades, because he doesn't want to do anything but to focus on winning another title. He speaks highly of crew chief Rodney Childers who can do anything on a car and used to be a driver.
- Patrick says she hopes to continue improving and learn to work with new crew chief Daniel Knost. She thinks the results that they had together in the final three races of the season were not what she wanted, but they improved each time. She hasn't closed the door on ever running the Indy 500, but says that as the years pass, her desire to do it diminishes.
- Kurt Busch says last year's numbers were not good enough. He says that his finishes and qualifying were up quite a bit when Tony Gibson became crew chief in last three races. He's looking forward to the horsepower reduction and the downforce reduction. He's excited about getting to work with Gibson and he has the blessing of both Stewart and of Michael Andretti in IndyCar to run the Indy 500 again. But he has been so busy in the offseason that he hasn't discussed it yet. Busch only briefed addressed his legal troubles spawning from ex-girlfriend Patricia Driscoll alleging he attacked her. Busch says that he "stands on truth" and has plenty of support behind the scenes. He says he goes into this season feeling like he felt in both his second years at Roush Fenway Racing and at Penske Racing - confident. And he says that both years led to multiple wins and good points finishes.
- Stewart says that he physically is better than he was before the 2013 sprint car wreck that badly broke his leg. He says the adversity of the last two years hasn't wavered his wanting to continue driving, in fact, it's made the desire even more. He says that the main key to speed is the feel of the car - that the cars are so close that just being a little bit off can mean a lot. He isn't worried about the new rules package, because everyone has to deal with it, not just them. Stewart thinks that the All-Star race is a great chance to run the 2016 rules package. He also says he had a lot to get used to with new crew chief Chad Johnston last year and there are new people on the No. 14 team this year too.
- Patrick says that Daytona 500 is one race she really looks forward to, mainly because of how much it means and past success there. She says she is looking forward to tracks she has finished well before, because she keeps moving forward and thinks she can do better.
- Knost doesn't feel the pressure after swapping teams with Gibson and taking the reigns of the No. 10 ride. While Busch talked about his three races with Gibson fondly, Patrick said that she and Knost started off struggling. Knost says that most pressure he feels he puts on himself. He also objects to the idea that they were simply flat out slow last season - that circumstances, wrecked cars, and other factors took more wins and better finishes from them. He says that the cars he will set up and Patrick will drive this season will mostly be the ones Busch drove last season. He also thinks that the ability to change a trackbar in-car will be an advantage to Patrick, because she had many in-car adjustments she could make in IndyCar races.
- Gibson is always a great interview. He says that the new video pit road officiating system will be hardest to adjust to in terms of drivers driving through three or less pit boxes into and out of each stop and pit crew members going over the wall too early. Where he thinks the biggest changes will be are on how many lugnuts teams decide to tighten. Years ago, he says, they used to often only tighten three or four per wheel to save time, but then NASCAR started penalizing teams. Gibson thinks that despite what some teams say, teams will start to play around with the idea of tightening less lugs to save time. And he said that with a wry smile.
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