Ricky Stenhouse Jr. loves the family atmosphere of JTG Daugherty Racing. The tight-knit group reminds him of life during a simpler time, competing in sprint cars with his father.
Now, the driver of the No. 47 car is hungry to get back into the Winner’s Circle. If he can do it, it would be JTG’s first win since 2014. To say the least, it would be quite special for the two-time Xfinity Series champion.
BY JOSEPH WOLKIN, @JoeWolkin
“The first couple of races were definitely not ideal while being down at Daytona. Knowing the road course wouldn’t be our strong suit, we wanted to get off to a hotter start than we did at Daytona. We were fast, but we made one or two errors that really cost us a shot to battle for the win. This offseason, we really focused on not doing anything spectacular, but also not doing anything detrimental either. We’ve been trying to be consistent, take what the car will give us and not try to do anything more with it than what’s really possible for that given weekend. We’ve been doing a really good job with that. It was good to get a top five at Bristol, knowing we had a good shot to run well going into it. I’ve been happy with the consistency of myself, my team, my pit crew and everything is clicking really well right now.”
“It’s about taking things one weekend at a time. We’re getting honed in on that week and not looking too far ahead. We didn’t think about the Bristol race until it was Bristol week, even though that was one I was excited to get to.”
“I think because of that family atmosphere. When my dad and I were racing sprint cars, we had a ton of friends and family come to the track to help us on the weekends. My dad’s been a huge part of my career. When someone feels wanted at their job, you like the people you’re working with and everybody believes in each other -- not just them believing in me, but me believing in them -- it’s made it a great fit.”
“That would be big. When you can win for an organization like JTG Daugherty Racing -- getting the last couple of wins at Roush was neat -- it would mean a whole lot more to get a win here. It would mean a ton to all of our employees and partners. That’s our goal. We want to run well, but we have to run consistently before we can worry about winning a race. That’s been our motto going into this year. If we have those opportunities to go for a win because we’re running consistently, then that will be great.”