Dale Earnhardt Jr. Juan Pablo Montoya (No. 42 Texaco/Havoline Dodge), discussed progress and patience, both with the Car of Tomorrow and their own progress following the season’s first six events.
“I think the racing will be good,” Earnhardt said of the May event at Richmond. “A lot of guys are running in the middle, moving the grooves up, so that’s a good sign. It’s a great race track.”
Montoya, the former Formula 1 star who trails Roush Fenway Racing’s David Ragan (No. 6 AAA Ford) by one point in the Raybestos Rookie of the Year standings, saw yet another unfamiliar track this week. But he seems unfazed.
“I have six months of racing in the stock car against, what, 10, 12, eight years, 16 years?” Montoya said. “So it’s a little bit of a thing that you’ve just got to be very openminded about it.
“I think that helps me a little bit, I’m very open minded about trying stuff, and I think you cannot be scared of trying things here because you might surprise yourself with what works and what doesn’t.”
Earnhardt, the three-time and defending winner of Richmond’s spring event, applauded NASCAR’s recent modifications and decisions following the Car of Tomorrow’s first two events.
“I think that the Car of Tomorrow, we’ll learn a lot of little nuances and things like that within the car and make changes as we go with NASCAR,” Earnhardt said. “They’ve done a great job up to this point. They’re being real lenient in a lot of areas with the car. As we start to understand it, they’ll start to tighten the grip a little bit on the technical inspection and whatnot.”