Recently, the DGR-Crosley driver dished on the next race of the year at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, as well as more for POPULAR SPEED.
POPULAR SPEED: What are your thoughts going into the race at New Hampshire?
TYLER ANKRUM: We won there once already this year, and to get the sweep, that’d be fantastic to know that we were the first to get the sweep at New Hampshire. So to get a second win, fifth win of the year at the Magic Mile, would be huge. We’re leading the points so obviously we’re thinking about the championship. You can still lose the championship with two races to go, but I’m super confident going into Loudon.
PS: How would you rate your season so far?
ANKRUM: I don’t know. With 1 being the worse and 10 being the best, I’d have to say 10 because I never expected to get this amount of wins that we’ve gotten this year and performed the way we have. I don’t think anyone else has performed as we have. I would say 10/10. I haven’t won as much as I’ve won this year in a long time so I’m having a lot of fun with it right now.
PS: What’s been the secret to the success this year?
ANKRUM: I just think the biggest secret of the team being so successful is everyone does their part, works really hard, and gives 100% percent. All the guys work tirelessly at the shop, and I do my thing with school, and the gym, and watching film and being IRacing before races. I think our main nitch is nobody works harder than us, and I think that’s been the whole secret to our success this year.
PS: How did you get your start in racing?
ANKRUM: I grew up in California and when I was nine years old, I go started off in quarter midgets and raced those for about three or four years. Then from midgets, I got into a late model.
PS: What’s been the most memorable moment of your career to date so far?
ANKRUM: I think the most memorable moment I’ve had would’ve been the win at Loudon – no, I take that back. The most memorable moment this year would be the win at Compton. We were so good that weekend. We got the pole, got disqualified after qualifying for being out of tolerances on the rear skew. So started at the back, drove my way to the front, made a mistake on a restart, fell back to fifth, and then drove my way back to the front again to win.
That win right there was one of most memorable because that night, no one was going to deny us. That night, we were destined to win, and it just got that ball rolling for those three wins in a row. Really, I think this year has been just special to me because in the past few years in super late models, we haven’t had dominant races like that. But that night, everyone knew because I was flying through the field.
PS: Now racing at the NASCAR Home Tracks level, what would mean to you to race in one of the premiere divisions?
ANKRUM: Oh man. To race in Truck, XFINITY or Cup, I’d give anything to be like those guys. It’s been my dream to become a Cup driver since I started racing so I’d give anything to be one of them.
PS: Who is your racing hero?
ANKRUM: I had a lot of heroes in general. One of my heroes is Dale Earnhardt Sr., Jimmie Johnson, Dale Earnhardt Jr., and Tony Stewart. Probably my biggest is Ayrton Senna, the Formula 1 driver for the 1970s and 1980s. Obviously, that’s a driver from the past but I love history and I’ve read a lot of books on him, watched a lot of TV documentaries. He just seems like the perfect driver, and always tries to be one of those guys whose perfect behind the wheel.
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