KANSAS CITY, KS. - Dale Earnhardt Jr. may be 34 points out of first place and tenth in the Chase standings heading into Sunday's Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas Speedway, but the Hendrick Motorsports driver is not letting any possible pressure impact his performance.
Earnhardt addressed his spot in the standings as well as the No. 88 team's approach this weekend when he met the media Friday morning:
IS 34 (POINTS) TOO MUCH TO MAKE UP?
“You don’t really know I guess. I mean, 34 positions, you can do that in a race, there’s only 43 of us in a race. With the right luck, you can make it happen. We’re going to have to run good to do that. We’ll see how that goes. We’ve had some pretty fast cars, some quick enough cars to have some good finishes. Man, I would like to win a race before the year is out and I think we can do that as a team. I feel confident that we can do that. I don’t think it’s over by no means.”
HAVE YOU BEEN IN A HIGH PRESSURE SITUATION AND YOU FELT YOU DIDN’T PERFORM TO YOUR BEST?
“Yes, there are probably several races I can think of. Maybe Martinsville trying to hold off to win that race. I wish I could try that again. I don’t know, (Kevin) Harvick was pretty fast but I sure wish it had ended differently. There are a lot of things you definitely would like another shot at in life. But we don’t get that. You have to look forward. You have to look in the direction you are going.”
IS THERE ANYTHING YOU DO TO TAKE THE PRESSURE OFF YOURSELF SO YOU DON’T REALLY WORRY ABOUT THE PRESSURE?
“I don’t really let the pressure bother me too much. Attention bothers me, not pressure; you know, just feeling like you’re in the fish tank. The pressure is not a big deal. I’ve been around this sport a long, long time and I feel like I’ve got a good idea on what I’m doing. I feel comfortable doing what I’m doing and I haven’t had many opportunities to race for championships. I’m sure that’s a different situation that I’m not quite aware of. We were kind of close in 2004 and I didn’t even realize it until it was over with, how kind of close we came. So, I’m sure if I can get that opportunity again, then maybe I can revisit the pressure question.”
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