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Brian Vickers, Michael Waltrip Racing - Q&A

It's easy for him to say that, and someone has to pay for it and someone has to do that and that's Rob Kauffman. That man has done more to keep people employed, to people us moving forward. He comes from a business that if you are just from the trading floor, if you're just a split second behind the trader in front of you, you lose millions of dollars.

So he doesn't like losing and he doesn't like people who hesitate. So when he comes around, he asks us all the time, what do you need to be better; what do we need to fix issue A, B, C.

So I'm happy - I'm probably happiest for those guys, because Michael's got his whole life in this and Rob's got a lot of passion for it. So it's cool. Michael always tells us, you'd better wake up every morning like you're behind. I know Rodney and those guys will do that Monday morning, we're going to the next race. He feels like we're behind and we have to do more and we have to work harder.

Our organization is still, even though we are 260, 275 employees, it still feels very much family-owned and still feels like a small team who knows everybody's family and business, and when we celebrate, we celebrate with wives, husbands, children; and so it's a really cool atmosphere and to hang more banners off the rafters is the coolest thing in the world.

Q:
For the middle third of the race, basically you were stuck around 27th, 23rd, 24th, all of a sudden between laps 210 and 225, you go to fifth; what was the key quality that jumped you 20 places?

Rodney Childers:
The big thing was being off-sequence to the leaders. We kept working on the car all day and got it better and better, and we got to the point there, I think we were 23rd or something like that. We had about a ten- or 11-lap stretch that we were a tenth or two-tenths of a lap faster than the leader when we got clean air. I think #78 was leading at the time, and I told him, you're really good right here, whatever you're doing and all that stuff.

But the biggest key was just being off-sequence. I knew if we could ever get there that we would be in good shape. I told him at one point, it was like we just need something to go right; that we had a lot of things that went wrong in the beginning. A lap down the first time around, and I didn't feel comfortable with doing the wave around. I thought it was going to be green and we run 20 laps and a caution comes out and we have to fight for the lucky dog again.

But it all worked out, and we were fortunate at the end to do what we needed to do. We had a fast car, like Ty said. When you have Kyle Busch and Tony Stewart and people like that, it's a big deal. We were fortunate enough to do that and feels really good.

Ty Norris:
Michael is so mad, we spent three days together with Pete, one of our sponsors, we had a great event at Heartland Speedway.

So Thursday, he's like, all right let's go to Loudon. He goes: Wait, I looked at the itinerary, it says London; I have to go to London; I'm only off by one letter. So he went to the Goodwood Festival with Rob Kaufmann; so that decision, I'm sure he's having a glorious time there.

But he's probably really upset about missing this because of what all these guys, especially what #55 means to him personally and what Aaron's means to him personally.

Q:



Related Pictures

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Brian Vickers, driver of the #55 Aaron`s Dream Machine Toyota, takes the chequered flag as he crosses the finish line to win the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Camping World RV Sales 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on July 14, 2013 in Loudon, New Hampshire. (Photo Credit: Jonathan Ferrey/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Brian Vickers, driver of the #55 Aaron`s Dream Machine Toyota, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Camping World RV Sales 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on July 14, 2013 in Loudon, New Hampshire.  (Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/Getty Images)
Aric Almirola, driver of the #43 United States Air Force Ford, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 after the race was called for weather at Daytona International Speedway on July 6, 2014 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Aric Almirola, driver of the #43 United States Air Force Ford, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 after the race was called for weather at Daytona International Speedway on July 6, 2014 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Aric Almirola, driver of the #43 United States Air Force Ford, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 after the race was called for weather at Daytona International Speedway on July 6, 2014 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe’s Patriotic Chevrolet SS, qualified fifth Friday, July 4, 2014 for Saturday`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. Johnson is 2nd in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Bobby Labonte, driver of the #33 Thunder Coal Chevrolet SS, qualified fourth Friday, July 4, 2014 for Saturday`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Landon Cassill, driver of the #40 Newtown Building Supplies Chevrolet SS, qualified third Friday, July 4, 2014 for Saturday`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Christa L. Thomas/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Reed Sorenson, driver of the #36 Golden Corral Chevrolet SS, qualified second Friday, July 4, 2014 for Saturday`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Panasonic Chevrolet SS, races to second place Sunday, June 22, 2014 in the Nascar Sprint Cup race at Sonoma Raceway in Sanoma, California. Gordon leads the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Christa L. Thomas/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Brian Vickers, driver of the #55 Aaron`s Dream Machine Toyota, slides his car after contact with Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford, during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway on June 22, 2014 in Sonoma, California. (Photo Credit: Todd Warshaw/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Brendan Gaughan, driver of the #62 South Point Chevrolet, wins the Gardner Denver 200 Fired Up by Johnsonville race at Road America on June 21, 2014 in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. (Photo Credit: Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Brendan Gaughan, driver of the #62 South Point Chevrolet, leads Sam Hornish, Jr., driver of the #54 Monster Energy Toyota, through a turn during the Gardner Denver 200 Fired Up by Johnsonville race at Road America on June 21, 2014 in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. (Photo Credit: Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Brendan Gaughan, driver of the #62 South Point Chevrolet, celebrates winning the Gardner Denver 200 Fired Up by Johnsonville race at Road America on June 21, 2014 in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. (Photo Credit: Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Brendan Gaughn, driver of the #62 South Point Chevrolet, celebrates winning the Gardner Denver 200 Fired Up by Johnsonville race at Road America on June 21, 2014 in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. (Photo Credit: Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Kyle Larson, driver of the #42 Target Chevrolet SS, qualified third Saturday, June 21, 2014 for Sunday`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Sonoma Raceway in Sanoma, California. Larson is 8th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/HHP for Chevy Racing)
AJ Allmendinger, driver of the #47 Kingsford/Clorox Chevrolet SS, qualified second Saturday, June 21, 2014 for Sunday`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Sonoma Raceway in Sanoma, California. He will be sharing the front row with pole winner, Chevy`s Jamie McMurray, driver of the #1 Cessna Chevrolet SS. Allmendinger is 21st in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Christa L. Thomas/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jamie McMurray, driver of the #1 Cessna Chevrolet SS, won the pole position Saturday, June 21, 2014 for Sunday`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Sonoma Raceway in Sanoma, California. McMurray posted a track record with a time of 74.354 seconds (96.350 mph). Next to him on the front row will be Chevy`s AJ Allmendinger, driver of the #47 Kingsford/Clorox Chevrolet SS. McMurray is 20th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)

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