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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)
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Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS, races to win Sunday, July 27, 2014 the Brickyard 400 Nascar Sprint Cup race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana. Gordon, who leads the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings, has won at the Brickyard a record 5 times, the first one in 1994. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS, celebrates his win Sunday, July 27, 2014 of the Brickyard 400 Nascar Sprint Cup race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana. Gordon, who leads the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings, has won at the Brickyard a record 5 times, the first one in 1994. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS, kisses the Brick after his win Sunday, July 27, 2014 of the Brickyard 400 Nascar Sprint Cup race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana. Gordon, who leads the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings, has won at the Brickyard a record 5 times, the first one in 1994. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet, races the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Crown Royal Presents The John Wayne Walding 400 at the Brickyard Indianapolis Motor Speedway on July 27, 2014 in Indianapolis, Indiana.  (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/NASCAR via Getty Images)
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Ty Dillon, driver of the #3 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR Nationwide Series Lilly Diabetes 250 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on July 26, 2014 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Ty Dillon, driver of the #3 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Nationwide Series Lilly Diabetes 250 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on July 26, 2014 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo Credit: Brian Lawdermilk/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Ty Dillon, driver of the #3 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Nationwide Series Lilly Diabetes 250 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on July 26, 2014 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo Credit: Brian Lawdermilk/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Ty Dillon, driver of the #3 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet, stands on the grid with Haley Carey prior to the start of the NASCAR Nationwide Series Lilly Diabetes 250 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on July 26, 2014 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Ty Dillon, driver of the #3 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet, celebrates with brother and Sprint Cup driver Austin Dillon after Ty won the NASCAR Nationwide Series Lilly Diabetes 250 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on July 26, 2014 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/NASCAR via Getty Images)
The Richard Childress Racing #3 Chevrolet Nationwide Series car driven by Ty Dillon. (Photo Credit: Getty Images for NASCAR)
Ty Dillon with his team owner and grandfaster Richard Childress at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on March 7 2014. (Photo Credit: Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)
Tony Stewart, driver of the #14 Mobil 1/Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet SS, qualified sixth fastest Saturday, July 26, 2014 for Sunday`s Brickyard 400 Nascar Sprint Cup race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/HHP for Chevy Racing)

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