Brendan Gaughan Pre-Race Report - Gateway
Driver: Brendan Gaughan
Owner: Michael Gaughan
Event: Illinois / Missouri Dodge Dealers 200
Race: Saturday, April 29 – 7:15 pm
Qualifying: Saturday, April 29 – 4:00 pm
oval, 200 miles/160 laps
Notes of Interest:
Special Sponsor -- The
No. 77 Orleans Racing Dodge will be sporting the colors of the Casino Queen for the Illinois / Missouri Dodge
Dealers 200. The sponsorship brings the Queen back for its annual run in the Craftsman Truck Series, where it
visited victory lane in 2003. The Casino Queen is an award winning facility located just on the Illinois side of
the Mississippi River.
VIP Guest: The Orleans Racing team will be hosting a special guest
during the Saturday night “under the lights” event when St. Louis Rams tight end, Rod Trafford joins the crew in
the pits. Trafford should be easy to spot given his 6’ 3” / 250 pound stature.
Appreciation Program: Beginning with this week’s Illinois / Missouri Dodge Dealers 200 NCTS event the
No. 77 will carry the “patches” of various Military Units on the rear deck. The program gives Orleans Racing a
way to show their appreciation for the hard work of our men and women in uniform. Taking the maiden voyage will
be the A-10 Tactile Fighter Squadron School --- which is based at the adjacent Nellis Air Force base here in Las
Appearances: Driver Brendan Gaughan will have two autograph sessions prior to the
start of track events at Gateway International Raceway. The first will take place Friday afternoon at the Casino
Queen from 3:15 pm to 4:30 pm. The second will take place at the Gateway Intl., from 5 pm to 6 pm.
The piece: Gaughan will drive Orleans Racing’s T17.
Gateway Intl Raceway
Gaughan on Gateway:
busy since Martinsville. We went to St. Louis and did a little media tour for the Casino Queen and for Gateway
International Raceway. So the time off hasn’t been wasted. We’ve been testing and we’ve been wind tunneling the
trucks in the shop. The Dodge test team has been running. We’ve been busy making plans and changes and getting
things ready. It’s worked out well for the guys.
“Now the guys have a little bit of momentum. The
shop momentum has died down just a little bit and it’s time to go back to the racetrack. The words that Orleans
Racing has been using this year is cautiously optimistic. The race truck that we’re taking to Gateway came out
of the wind tunnel and it was the best Dodge body yet in the wind tunnel. This is chassis No. 17. It’s a brand
new one that has a Hopkins clip already put on it. Tom Buzze and Lance Wilson and all the set up guys feel very
optimistic that once again the Orleans Racing team thinks we’ve fixed our mechanical problems. This is another
track where the body isn’t big but it’s big enough that we may be pretty darn good there and see if we can’t
come away with another top five.”
DOES WINNING AT A RACETRACK AUTOMATICALLY INSTILL
CONFIDENCE? – “Absolutely. Just like drivers like certain racecars better than others. Those are the
intangibles that you can’t really measure. Coming to Gateway and coming to a track where we run the local
sponsor – the Casino Queen – on the truck. Then we’ve been there and we’ve won before. It’s a night race and
there’s all the excitement with that. We definitely go there with a little bit more confidence but this is a
team that is still rebuilding. Our guns have been loaded and Rambo has been making sure that our guns have been
loaded but we’re not ready to fire off a hundred rounds yet. We’re cautiously optimistic and see if we can’t
keep this string of best finishes by a Dodge team. If we can get there and win great. Right now let’s start
talking about those top fives.”
ABOUT NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE - “My father is the
honorary lieutenant commander of the A-10 Tactile Fighter Squadron School out at Nellis Air Force Base.
Basically for the A-10 pilots, it’s their Top Gun. My dad’s been the honorary lieutenant commander out there for
awhile and he goes out and drinks at the bar they have there called The Trough and hangs out with the boys. He
likes to take care of them. We’re the only west coast team and we’re right across the street from Nellis Air
Force Base. So we have kind of a unique relationship with the base. My dad has been a big part of that.
Everybody knows how I feel about the military with all the stuff that I’ve talked about in the last couple
of years. Of course I have to apologize every time I go to Nellis Air Force Base because by Marine crew chief
likes to make fun of them behind their backs. Then when we’re there, there are too many Air Force guys and they
call him the Jar Head when we walk in.”
“We’ve got a really special relationship with the way the
Orleans Racing team, Las Vegas and Nellis coexist. Recently we went down to the base to the A-10 school and the
422 squadron and see what we could do. We didn’t care. We just wanted to do anything. We’re going to run a
sticker every race. Each race it will be different. We’re just going to keep asking them to give us stickers.
The first race we actually have the graduate sticker. It’s like the patch that all the graduates get at the A-10
school and wear on their uniform. That’s the sticker that we’re running this week. It’s an honor for us to be
able to do anything we can for the military and Rambo and I like to do a lot for them. We’re still waiting for
Speedway Children’s Charity and General Sadler to send us back overseas. This is our way to try to do whatever
we can for the troops.
“Every race we’re going to keep asking the boys for stickers and
information on what the sticker means. We don’t want to just put it on blindly. We want to know a little bit
about what we’re putting on. We’re going to put a new decal on every race. So look for it on the deck lid above
Jasper and in between the two windows in the back. Every week we’ll have something new. So stay tuned and see
what we put there each week.”
Meet the Crew:
Race Day Duty
Front Tire Changer
Rear Tire Changer
Rear Tire Hanger
Front Tire Hanger
Tire Spec / Fabricator
Ice System Control
Listen in on the #77: The team’s primary radio frequency is 451.3371.