Brendan Gaughan on Making His First NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Attempt at Kansas Speedway: Gaughan says Kansas is a great track to race on.
“I typically like the [mile and a half] speedways and Kansas is no different,” Gaughan said. “I raced in a Winston West race at Kansas for its inaugural weekend. I finished fourth, I think, but I remember thinking then what a great track it was. I also remember how narrow the track seemed with the new surface. I hit the wall a couple of times, kind of like I did at Darlington earlier this year.”
Gaughan to Carry ‘Wizard of Oz’ Paint Scheme for Kansas Event: Gaughan is one of four drivers who will sport a special paint scheme honoring the great movie classic “The Wizard of Oz” at Kansas Speedway. Gaughan's No. 77 Kodak Racing Dodge will feature Ofoto, the online digital photo developing service, as well as filmstrips from the Technicolor movie masterpiece, including the black and white images of Dorothy's Kansas and the full-color spectrum of Oz. Visit Ofoto www.ofoto.com for details.
In addition to the paint scheme, Action Performance Companies is producing racing collectibles to support the program.
Gaughan Gives Credit Where Credit is Due: Gaughan attributes his Talladega run to several parties: the newly developed superspeedway program at Penske Racing; a focused effort from the Kodak Racing team; and last but not least, Buddy Baker.
“The fourth-place finish in Talladega was a full-on team effort,” said Gaughan. “When Jasper Motorsports joined forces with Penske Racing South, a superspeedway program was born and this was their baby. Not only was [it] like a win for the Kodak Racing team, it shows the formation of the superspeedway program has been beneficial. Now they can focus on Daytona 2005.”
“Before the race, in a team meeting, Shane [Wilson, crew chief] told the guys to ‘execute’ all day. He told them even if they made a mistake, they had to let it go and look at the big picture and that is what we did all day.”
“Buddy Baker told me I would like superspeedway racing and I didn’t believe him. Now I do. Earlier this year at Dover, Baker told me something, I don’t remember what it was about, and I questioned him. He told me then, ‘If I tell you a rooster can plow a field, you better stand back and watch the dirt fly’. I guess you can say I now believe a rooster can plow a field! Baker has been a big help and great support all year and I hope our friendship continues to grow.”
Gaughan on What Could Have Been a Costly Mistake at Talladega: Gaughan received a pass-through penalty for speeding on pit road at Talladega. Gaughan swept around Casey Mears and hit the entrance to pit road too fast.
“I should have gotten in line behind Casey. I just didn’t want to miss the entrance to pit road. Fortunately, the racing gods helped me out a little because the caution flag was displayed just as I was about to go one lap down. I have put myself in that same position, no-man’s land with no drafting help, too many times this year. Not speeding on pit road is definitely on my ‘List of Things to Learn From’.”
Equipment: Gaughan will race chassis PJR-32 at Kansas Speedway. PJR-32 is the same chassis Gaughan attempted to race in the NEXTEL Open (May 22) (St. 10th/Fin. 23rd) and Pocono (Aug.1) (St. 10th/Fin. 28th). Gaughan was one of 11 drivers whose “Open” event ended before it started.