By: Ashley McCubbin
After experiencing some success in the NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoor Truck Series, Myatt Snider has made the jump up to NASCAR Xfinity Series competition in 2020 with Richard Childress Racing. Thus far four races into the year, he has scored a best finish of 11th at Auto Club Speedway.
Recently, POPULAR SPEED caught up with the North Carolina native to get his thoughts on the series’ return to action at Darlington Raceway, the Saturday Night Thunder series, and more.
POPULAR SPEED: What are your thoughts on returning to the track at Darlington?
MYATT SNIDER: Well, it’s going to be a really fun one. I haven’t actually been to Darlington since before, but it’s always been one of the tracks that I’ve wanted to go to. It’s one of those bucket list tracks without a doubt, and I’m really glad to have the opportunity to go there this year. I’ve been trying to get on iRacing or any simulator that I can and get prepared to go to that race track and have a good run.
PS: Prior to the break, where did you feel that you and RCR stood performance-wise?
MYATT: Well, there was some places that I needed to improve on. I think I did really well at Daytona, but at Las Vegas, there was some good and bad moments; at Phoenix, I needed to step up my game, but it’s all part of the process. That’s why I’m here – to learn and get better, and hopefully get myself to a point towards the end of the season where I’m easily one of the contenders to win at any track that we go to.
PS: What do you feel is the biggest thing you need to do to keep improving to be even stronger?
MYATT: Just getting used to how these Xfinity Series cars drive. I think I figured out how to drive a truck at pretty much every track that we went to when I was with ThorSport. Now I just needed to get used to a different driving dynamic. The trucks had more downforce than the cars do, so it’s different driving style for sure. That’s the biggest thing that I need to adjust to.
PS: Talking about improving, having good teammates to lean on is always helpful. How is that relationship with your teammates at RCR?
MYATT: While, me and Kaz Grala work out all the time and I’ve known him for I don’t know how many years now, since we were kids basically. I don’t talk to Anthony (Alfredo) much. He’s always been training and doing all this other stuff, so I usually just see him at the shop or at the race track, and it’s been a few months since we’ve been at the shop so I haven’t seen him in awhile. I’m also trying to build a relationship with Tyler (Reddick) because he’s obviously pretty darn good in an Xfinity car, so he’s definitely not a bad resource to have.
PS: Fans were kept entertained with the Saturday Night Thunder and Pro Invitational Series during the downtime. What were your thoughts in competing in that?
MYATT: That honestly was a lot of fun. I really appreciative towards iRacing in doing something like that, because we were all stuck in our houses with no way of racing. It was just hard because we all wanted to race and we didn’t really have the option, too. So with iRacing, FOX, and NASCAR all coordinating to do something like this was the best solution that we could possibly have. I thought some of the races were pretty decent; I had a lot of fun at Bristol and Martinsville, but just being able to do that was pretty special to me.
PS: Prior to the series, how much iRacing experience did you have?
MYATT: I had actually been racing on iRacing in 2010 and 2011; I’ve known about it for awhile now. I’ve played it for a long time, my friends have played it for a long time, but I just took it as a way to practice my race craft, nothing that was going to be taken too seriously. I just realized the best practice was real life racing. But all the time that I had to run on iRacing over this period of this quarantine has really shown me how much more accurate it has become over the years, and really opened my eyes to what I could use it for. I’ll be using it a lot more.
PS: Who is someone that surprised you in the Saturday Night Thunder series?
MYATT: I don’t necessarily think there was a lot of surprises, but it just helped to show how some of the little guys were able to show their stuff, because some of these guys have never really been in a competitive racecar before at this level. So it kind of leveled the playing field and allowed guys to show some stuff, so that was cool. I thought I saw Josh Bilicki up there, Stefan Parsons was pretty fast at Martinsville – some good surprises in there.
PS: Outside of the NASCAR racecars, have you ran any other cars on the service?
MYATT: Oh, I’ve run just about everything there is on iRacing. I particularly love Rally Cross. I’ve enjoyed that a bunch, and some of the road course racing. I try and run all of the options on iRacing that we have.
PS: Besides iRacing, what have you been up to during the break?
MYATT: Just completing some projects. I finished up my venture at UNC Charlotte, passed all my classes which is good, and I’ve also been working on some other projects. I bought myself a house, which was a long-term goal of mine, so the virus may be a terrible thing, but I’ve at least been able to find some useful time in it, so that to me is a bit of a blessing. I’ve been staying busy.
PS: With everything you’ve done in your NASCAR career to date, what would be one piece of advice you’d offer to someone who wants to get to where you are now?
MYATT: Just make as many connections as you possibly can. I heard a good quote awhile ago in a book I was reading in that “your network is basically your networth,” like the amount of people you know can help you get along a lot of further. I’ve been blessed to have a good network and my dad (Matt Snider) to help me out in racing in general as he’s been in the sport for 20-something years now at least. So yeah, it’s been a blessing to have him and plenty of other people who have helped to push for success in the sport.
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