By: Ashley McCubbin
Entering Watkin’s Glen, Stewart Friesen sits on the edge of making the playoffs, taking up the last spot only by 53 points over Derek Kraus. As he gets ready for the weekend, he shared his thoughts with NEWS FROM THE PITS.
ASHLEY MCCUBBIN: What are your thoughts going into the event?
STEWART FRIESEN: I’m pretty excited. It’s close to home, closest NASCAR track to home for me. We’ve got a lot of modified fans across the New York state with a lot of tracks close to Watkin’s Glen. So pretty excited for that. Hopefully we can have a good run.
ASHLEY: With the fact the trucks haven’t been to Watkin’s Glen for quite a long time, what are you doing to prepare for the event?
STEWART: A little conversation with those who have experience there, and some sim time. TRD’s sim is one of the best in the game so we’ve been leaning on that making a bunch of laps, three hours the other day. I’ve gotten pretty comfortable, so hopefully we have a pretty good package. Definitely be exciting with no practice and having been off a couple weeks.
ASHLEY: How would you rate the team’s road course program, and what do you need to do to make it better?
STEWART: I mean, it’s not probably where it needs to be. There’s probably still work that needs to be done. First and foremost, we’re still building this team and we had to go out and get the truck, people and all that stuff. We built some new oval trucks, but our road course, speedway and dirt truck is used equipment. We’ve been trying to update our stuff as best as we can.
We’ve had speed at the Daytona road course, ran inside the top-five for awhile, and we had some speed at COTA. So hopefully we can come through without issue and not get used around, we’ll be okay.
ASHLEY: How would you rate your truck series season to date?
STEWART: Overall, we’ve had speed, made a lot of mistakes, I’ve made a lot of mistakes behind the wheel and we’ve made mistakes as a team and we can’t do that in the playoffs. If we have a good run at Watkin’s Glen and get into the playoffs, I believe we can contend but we can’t shoot ourselves in the foot, that’s for sure.
ASHLEY: Beyond Watkin’s Glen, what track are you excited to get to?
STEWART: Oh boy, I like all of them. After Watkin’s, is St. Louis which is a fun track. We also get to go back to Bristol on the concrete so there’s a couple that come to mind which are exciting.
ASHLEY: We’ve seen this team progress and change over time. What’s the biggest thing that stands out from where you started?
STEWART: It’s been a lot of work, and been a lot of fun to build this deal from the ground up. But saying that, the couple top-five’s that we had at the beginning felt really good and that was really fun. We are just going to keep building on it and hopefully get a win here and that’ll be the best thing.
ASHLEY: What have you been up to during the break?
STEWART: I’ve been racing. We raced dirt modifieds, and ran 10 races between the last truck race and Watkin’s Glen. We just stay racing with our modifieds.
ASHLEY: I know you’ve collected some checkered flags. What’s been the biggest win this year?
STEWART: Probably last night winning the Hall of Fame 100, which was 10k to win, and we also won the Richie Evans Memorial race. That was probably the biggest win of the season. Richie’s family is close with ours so that was pretty cool.