TRG enjoyed more success in the Rolex 24 at Daytona, with the Porsche squad securing a 1-2 finish in the GT class of the round-the-clock event.

Following the event, Crash.net spoke to team boss Kevin Buckler to get his thoughts...

Crash.net:
Another successful run for TRG here at the Rolex Kevin, a 1-2 finish to lock-out the top two steps on the GT podium. How are you feeling?

Kevin Buckler:
It's awesome, and it's awesome to hear you say that - the 1-2 finish. We have had some heartbreak hear and some unbelievable moments and this is one of the unbelievable moments. I've been coming here since 1995 and 2002 is when our run started. Someone asked me how many trophies we have here and it's nine from the Rolex weekends. I can't believe it.

It's really rewarding for me to have this happen this weekend because I got to race with a bunch of my buddies and this was a dream of theirs to race here. For me, as the guy who is now almost the 'dreamweaver', to deliver for them is very fulfilling. I'm proud of the job this team did because we have been working none stop on this for four months.

Crash.net:
The battle in GT wasn't as close as the battle for overall honours, but it wasn't an easy win. How challenging has the weekend been?

Kevin Buckler:
It was challenging right up until the point the #86 car broke, because they were chasing us really hard. They had us covered and we were out of sequence on the pitstops and it was back and forth between us. They put together one hell of a car but when they broke, it became a two-horse race and both of them were ours.

Crash.net:
Logistically, you always seem to have an obscene amount of cars running in this race. How tough is it to put the whole programme together and get everything in place to be running four, five or six cars?

Kevin Buckler:
It's difficult but I have so many good guys on my team that they make it easier for me. I used to micromanage everything on this programme but now I do less and less and less to the point where I know that there are areas they guys will just deal with, and I trust them to do it. I'm so proud of them all.

Crash.net:
So a perfect start to the season but no time to relax before you are back here at Daytona for the 500 after the announcement of an entry into that race. How did that all come about?

Kevin Buckler:
We own a little NASCAR team which we started last year. It was an ongoing endeavour with several of my friends that we had raced our way to the front of the sportscar world and are locked and loaded and full there. We have kind of run out of runway a little bit and wanted to take a swing at it in NASCAR. We started a Truck team last year and had a great first season with a win and ten top-tens, which was an unbelievable first year.

Myself and my partners and friends said, with the way the economy is shaping up and the possibility of a few less entries when our goal is to race in the Sprint Cup, why don't we see if we can get a car in the 500? So I started to look at it and put the right pieces in place - just like we do here. I didn't want to do a 'park and start' where you start out and hope to just make the field. We are coming here to race and we have a good car, a good driver and a good crew. We might come here and not even qualify, but we'll give it our best shot.

Crash.net:
What will the biggest challenge be going into the 500 as your first Sprint Cup race?

Kevin Buckler:
It's always going to be hard. The level of competition in NASCAR, in any of the three series', is incredible. A lot of times, the big mistake someone like me would make is to underestimate how good these guys are; but they are good. We have a technical alliance with Richard Childress to act as a kind of mothership. It's our team, our car and our stuff but if we need to lean on them a little bit for some information then we can. It will be real difficult and we will have a steep learning curve, but we have to learn.

Crash.net:
You say you might come here and not even qualify for the race, but what would be the ultimate goal and the ultimate aim from the weekend?

Kevin Buckler:
We are trying to launch ourselves into the upper echelon of NASCAR and the ultimate goal is to be involved in the Sprint Cup. I'm very proud of the job our team has done on the business side of thing and we have put together a great little marketing group and have people involved in hospitality - a little bit ahead of our time in the sportscar and Truck side, but definitely not in the Sprint Cup as those guys are good. But ultimately, we want to take ourselves to the next level.

 

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