Brendan Gaughan on Indianapolis Motor Speedway;
“Year after year I hear about the Brickyard 400 and the spectacle it has become. This year, I am a part of it, and that excites me. What also excites me is my motor coach! I have heard more war stories about traffic at [Indianapolis Motor Speedway] than anything. I overheard Shane [Wilson] telling the Penske-Jasper team to plan to leave the hotel at 4:30 a.m., at least, Sunday morning. Are you kidding me! I will still be asleep for at least a few hours after that, I hope, provided the team doesn’t come crawling in looking for a place to sleep!”
Hometown Race for Jasper Engines and Transmissions: Jasper Engines and Transmission recently acquired the Brickyard 400 event after entering into an agreement with Kodak for four additional races from their previous agreement. With Jasper, IN, home of JET just down the interstate, Gaughan hopes to have a great run, backing up the team’s performances at both New Hampshire International Speedway and Pocono Raceway.
“The last two weeks have been improvements for the Jasper Engines and Transmission’s Racing team,” Gaughan said. “Sitting in Jasper’s backyard, I hope to continue with the improvements and hope to have a finish indicative of our weekend’s performance, not a finish that was decided because of a split second. I believe we create our own luck, last week is a perfect example.”
Not So “Lucky Dog”: At Pocono Raceway, Gaughan was cited with a violation after leaving his pit stall with a wedge wrench still in the car. The penalty was a pass through which placed the No. 77 Penske-Jasper powered Dodge one-lap down. Gaughan was then in position to regain his lap thanks to the “Lucky Dog” rule, but watched it slip away after a miscommunication brought him down pit road, one-lap early, resulting in the loss of one-lap, placing him right back where he started prior to the yellow flag.
“As a team, we realize it is the little things that are killing us,” Gaughan said. “We know we are a better team than what we have portrayed thus far. The only way to improve is to regain our focus. I feel as though each team member is working on this daily. Failure is a tough pill to swallow, especially when you set yourself up for it. Fortunately, the guys on this Penske-Jasper team have admitted when we have made a mistake. It is a collective admission because we are a team, not individuals. Only after admission can we make corrections. We are getting good at it, correcting it that is!”
Gaughan’s Indianapolis Motor Speedway Experience: While Gaughan has no competition experience at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, he has driven at least 500 miles on the track thanks to a former employer, The Richard Petty Driving Experience.
Welcome to the Team: Penske-Jasper Racing welcomes Brian Wilson to the team as shock specialist. Wilson, a graduate of NC State, comes to the No. 77 team fresh from ARCA competition. Wilson previously worked for ARCA dominator, Frank Kimmel.
Equipment: Brendan Gaughan will race chassis PRS-77 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. PRS-77 is the first new Penske chassis allotted to Gaughan and the Penske-Jasper Racing team. This particular car has no competition history though the team tested it at IMS July 11-12, following the Chicagoland Speedway race. During the test, Gaughan’s teammate Rusty Wallace, driver of the No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge, worked with him to help find an agreeable set-up