Interview

ASHLEY ASKS…… Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor was able to put together a solid first season in the NASCAR Pinty’s Series, taking home the Josten’s Rookie of the Year Award. The Alberta native recently shared his renewed outlook entering 2019 as his team Canada’s Best Racing Team partners with Wright Motorsport Inc.

POPULAR SPEED: What are your thoughts entering the season?

BRETT TAYLOR: Overall, I think our approach to the season is a lot more calculated and I think we’re a lot more prepared on many fronts. But specifically we built two brand new cars, we’ve merged with Wright Motorsport Inc (WMI), and built a new team from a personnel perspective as well. We have a new engine builder – we feel we’re coming into the season with the tools to win, so pretty pumped.

PS: So with having put the new partnership together, what are your goals and expectations?

BRETT: Well, you know, I think with anything if you surround yourself with better and more talented people, it’ll force you or encourage you to raise the bar yourself, so I think that’s one of the most positive things I’m looking for in being with this team. WMI’s collaboration with DJK (Racing) with D.J. Kennington and Andrew Ranger, and all the experience and the knowledge that they’ve shared with David Wright apart of will reduce our learning curve. So we should be out of the box faster.

PS: Looking back on last season, what do you feel you could’ve done better to make the year even more successful?

BRETT: You could probably ask any driver, and they’re going to blame something else. Last year, our goal was to win Rookie of the Year first and foremost, and we achieved that. So overall, the year was a success. In addition to winning Rookie of the Year, the goal was to try and finish every lap and not wreck a car, and just get out there and dice it up and be in the mix and get the valuable seat time, and I feel like we achieved that as well.

In saying that, there are a lot of disappointments with our equipment. I think I underestimated the value of being prepared, and the value of a strong team, and the value of a strong engineer along with the car itself. I think we could’ve done better than what we did given if we would’ve been in better equipment, but that doesn’t take away from the fact that we entered last season knowing we didn’t have a big budget, so we weren’t expecting the world. I quickly realized the disadvantages of not being in top equipment.

PS: Road courses or ovals – what’s your preference?

BRETT: Honestly, they’re so different. I feel there’s such a difference between road courses and ovals, it’s almost like which do you prefer – football or soccer? I look at them that way. I would probably say road courses.

PS: What track are you most looking forward to?

BRETT: I am looking forward to getting back to CTMP, because I have a bone to pick with that course. Last season, we definitely weren’t where we needed to be so I’m excited to get out there and be a contender because last year, the last two races, the first race we had brake issues, and the second race we had gear issues. So we really didn’t even accomplish close to what we could’ve, so looking forward to getting back there.

PS: What are your thoughts on the current state of the series?

BRETT: I think it’s evident Pinty’s and NASCAR have been putting a lot of effort into driver awareness. I’m really happy with how much they’re trying to get people to learn about who we are; the commercials are a lot more focused on us as drivers, and I think it’s bringing a lot more awareness to our sport. You also see a lot more commercials during the American races in Canada anyway, so I think it’s growing, which is great to be apart of something that you see a great future with.

PS: We’ve been drivers trying different series and cars. Is there anything on your bucket list?

BRETT: The future plan is to do a Daytona start. At what level, I don’t know yet. It’d be amazing to do Cup, but I know that’s far out there. A more real start would be ARCA or truck for me.

EMAIL ASHLEY AT ashley.mccubbin@popularspeed.com

FOLLOW ON TWITTER: @ladybug388

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