NASCAR's Chase Austin Goes One-On-One With BR's Ashley McCubbin
Chase Austin made his 2010 Nationwide Series debut at Michigan last week. The race did not go as he planned as he qualified 35th and finished 35th after a blown motor.
Despite that, Austin looks forward with the experience gained to his next opportunity.
Though in the meantime, he took some time out of his schedule to answer some questions for Bleacher Report readers.
Ashley McCubbin: What are some of your thoughts after running Michigan?
Chase Austin: It was a pretty good race to start off with but it didn't end like we wanted it to, but I was just happy to be back on track with some great sponsors doing some things for the charities and helping those great people with the Forgotten Harvest Million Meal Challenge with Walgreen's. I was just happy to be there helping those people and getting a chance to race.
AM: What are your thoughts on the new NASCAR COT?
CA: It was a really fun. It was a lot like the truck that I ran at Michigan previously this year. They are really cool looking. I was running the Dodge Challenger which looks a lot like the street car so it was just a fun experience overall.
AM: You mentioned running the truck race earlier this year at Michigan. In comparing the trucks to the Nationwide Series, what are some of the similarities? What are some of the differences?
CA: I've never really driven the trucks too much; I think that was my third time in the trucks and my first race in the Nationwide car.
But the thing that I really noticed that was the same was the side force, which is how much you can lean on each other in the corners 'cause they're so tall. They're also a similar body shape to the truck compared to the old Nationwide race so there were a lot of similarities to it with the way that you run them and the front splitter and how you set the car up. You can sort of start off with the same type of set-up.
Besides that, there's obviously differences with one being a truck and the other being a car and the chassis are designed different. But they're both fun to drive and I was happy I got the chance to drive both of them.
AM: You've got another Nationwide race later year at Atlanta. What are some of your goals for that?
CA: That's not a 100 percent that I am going to run that, but if I do, it's going to be to run laps and actually finish a race without blowing a motor this time as that has happened the past two times. But it's just going to be about getting the seat time and learning a lot so that way next year I'll have that experience to carry over and start the year off good.
AM: How'd you get started in racing?
CA: I was eight years old and I started racing in go-karts. We just had a fairgrounds that my parents actually kind of threw together for me. We ran that from my nine to ten and that was actual racing, not just in yard cars, and that's where I got my start. They did that as a trial thing and to see if it was a phase and I ended up sticking with it. It was actually a serious hobby after that where our whole family was involved that we did it every weekend and it eventually became a career for me.
AM: Where do you see yourself in five years?
CA: That actually changes by day it feels like. Hopefully in the sprint cup series racing full-time and being able to actually....looking forward to, the biggest thing, is to be able to give back a lot as I've had a rough road to get here and I know a lot of people that are struggling as well so just to be able to make it to that spot, and do what I love to do helping people.
AM: Who is your racing idol?
CA: I don't really have one. Growing up, I always looked up to the NASCAR drivers like Tony Stewart was one of them, Jeff Gordon of course, I mean when I was a kid before I started racing. But once I got started in racing and got to compete against them, they're more like competitors now and I don't really have a mentor so to speak. Pretty much nobody that I look up to as of now but growing up, I'd have to say Tony Stewart.
AM: What's your favorite racing memory?
CA: There's a lot of good ones. Of course, every time that you win. But, overall, just being able to spend time with my family, getting to bond with my dad, my parents in general, my sisters, 'cause I know a lot of people that don't get to do that and I got the abundance of that. Just being able to go out and do local races with my mom, my dad and my sisters and spending time with them.
AM: What is your advice to up-and-coming drivers?
CA: That it's not a real easy road. It may be easier for others depending on where they're coming from, but you got to be able to put in the work and not back out when it gets hard.
AM: What are some of your hobbies away from the track?
CA: I'm a big video game person. I love video games; it's unreal. You wouldn't believe it. If I could play video games and race professionally, I'd do it. It's unreal. I'm a big Xbox fanatic.
AM: What is your favourite game?
CA: As of right now, I'd have to say Gears of War and Call of Duty. Those are the most popular ones that I play that never leave my system. Actually if I could make it equal, I'd say I've spent more time playing video games than racing, but it's easier to play video games then race in a car for hours.
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