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-   -   Daytona 500 interview with Mark Martin (http://www.localracechat.com/forums/showthread.php?t=33425)

tas 02-12-2008 05:43 PM

Daytona 500 interview with Mark Martin
 
MARK MARTIN, NO. 8 U.S. ARMY IMPALA SS met with media and talked about his second place Daytona 500 finish, his part-time schedule, his workout routine, and more:

FROM A SPONSORíS PERSPECTIVE, ARE THE DEMANDS OR EXPECTATIONS FROM THE ARMY ANY DIFFERENT THAN MAYBE PFIZER OR VALVOLINE, SPONSORS YOUíVE WORKED WITH IN THE PAST?

ďYou know, each sponsor that Iíve worked with has been a little bit different as far as what they want and what they need, but you know itís really been a joy for me. The things that Iíve done for them have been things that I have been really proud to be a part of and really enjoyed. Of course 2007 was by far the best year of my lifetime; best sponsor experience as well as everything else. 2007ís tops and Army was a part of that.Ē




HOW DOES IT FEEL TO COME BACK HERE? DO YOU HAVE AN EXTRA SPRING IN YOUR STEP KNOWING YOU WERE SO CLOSE TO WINNING IT?

ďAbsolutely no difference. None. You know what I am saying; there is no difference in my step or anything else. I was very proud of the effort that my team made last year but that was last year you know, and I drove the race of my life last year and Iím also proud of that and beyond that to me itís like it never happened. Just like all the wins to me, it feels like they never happened and I would be the same person had they not have happened. My life doesnít revolve around the past. It mostly revolves around the future. Iíve always focused forward not much look back.Ē

SPEAKING OF THE FUTURE, NOW THAT YOU ARE ON THE PART-TIME PLAN, HAVE YOU GIVEN SERIOUS THOUGHT TO HOW MUCH LONGER YOU GOING TO KEEP DOING THIS?

ďYeah, donít think I havenít thought about it. Iím a planner. I planned on it for five years and it wound up being six instead of five but you know the circumstances around it. You know being in the No. 6 car in Ď06 I hadnít planned on doing that. Itís not forever. What Iím doing now is not forever, thatís for sure. Itís limited as well and itís limited for multiple reasons. One is I donít really think itís practical for me to try to do for another seven years or probably even another five years. Itís limited, but I do have Ď09 basically in place.Ē

SO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE PROBABLY GOOD FOR Ď09?

Mark Martin: Well, I have Ď09 in place; I mean we have Ď09 in place. All but sorting out the details. I actually have a long-term agreement with Dale Earnhardt Incorporated just as I had with Ginn although it didnít transfer when we made the change. We did a new contract with Dale Earnhardt Incorporated that was long-term which includes my racing in Cup again in Ď09 and sort of unspecified for the next three years after that.

WHATíS YOUR NON-CUP PROGRAM?

ďFive races with Rick Hendrick and JR Motorsports, so ironically I work for Teresa, Dale Jr., and Rick Hendrick. So Iím still crossing the lines. Not as quite as dramatically as last year but still crossing lines again this year to some degree.Ē

DOING ANY TRUCKS?

ďNot any trucks right now. Iíd worked real hard on trying to put together trucks and it is an incredibly tough business model and we just werenít able to do it. Iíve looked at it real hard especially with trying to get involved, and actually becoming part owner in David Dollarís program. Might happen in the future, but we just you know, we really had to prioritize things and a number one priority was the No. 8 and Dale Earnhardt Incorporated and Aric Almirola and Regan Smith. Thatís really where my heart is and where my priorities are and we are going to have some fun in the Busch car and who knows where that goes. But I have enormous respect for Dale Jr. and Iím really proud to be a part of that cooperative effort between Hendrick and Jr. and being a part of that shop and Tony Eury, Sr. and Chad Walters as crew chief obviously. Junior is going to drive the same car as I do and so I did the first test at Vegas. So I feel like Iím working and helping you know get things sort of in order for Junior. You know weíre working weíre going to work together obviously but doing some cool stuff, still really cool stuff.Ē

CAN YOU TELL A DIFFERENCE PHYSICALLY AND MENTALLY OR SPIRITUALLY OR HOWEVER YOU WANT TO SAY IT IN YOUR BODY AND YOUR PERSONALITY NOW THAT YOUíVE GONE TO A PART-TIME SCHEDULE?

ďAbsolutely. Number one letís talk about physically. I am by far in the best shape of my life today ó by far. Just short of incredible condition right now and I love it. I was just talking coming in this morning, Iím as happy as I could be walking in here. If I were doing the full schedule Iíd be walking in here with a snarl on my face. Iíve done this so many times and this wouldnít be what I would want to be doing, but because Iím doing what I want to do. I want to be here, I want to be a part of this and thatís how Iíve addressed everything. Thatís one of the things that made 2007 one of the greatest years of my life. To have the opportunity to not only represent U.S. Army but the No. 8 car and Dale Earnhardt Incorporated, itís really special to me. You know itís a once in a lifetime opportunity to work with that company and to work on bringing along Aric and seeing Regan reach his full potential and be a part of that organization and the legacy. 2008 is going to be I hope another one. I expect to be able to say that 2008 was the greatest year of my life. 2007 obviously is today and Iím a brand new person because Iím not doing anything that I donít want to do ó nothing. And I did a lot of that for a long, long time. A lot of stuff that I didnít want to do and I did those for my career, for Roush Racing and for my career, the things that we had to do and now I only do the things that I want to do.Ē

ON THE NEW RACE CAR

ďYou know, I think we are making great progress with the new car and the handling department and all and the more we race it the better weíll make the car.Ē

HOW DOES IT COMPARE TO THE OLD CAR?

ďWell, technically the car is a giant step backwards from the old car, technically. So we have made great strides in bringing that back and getting a lot of that back in this new car.Ē

TALK ABOUT BEING IN THE BEST SHAPE OF YOUR LIFE. ARE YOU TRAINING DIFFERENTLY NOW THAN YOU DID? ARE YOU FINDING YOU HAVE TO TRAIN DIFFERENTLY?

ďOne thing is, Iím training at about 45 minutes later in the day, instead of at 5:30 ó Iím a little bit after 6:00. Thatís helped a lot. I have more time. I donít have quite the same deadline so Iím doing more stretching. I have more time to plan and be more diligent on the way I eat and the nutrition program. But I think the stretching has done an awful lot for me and a little less pressed on time gives me an opportunity to vary my workouts more. In other words, before I just had to do it and get it done and I did the same thing every time and hurry up, hurry up and now I am doing a better job putting variety into my program. So instead of forcing through 45 minutes I may be using an hour and ten or fifteen, you know adding a lot of stretching. When you get older it becomes really important. Iíve lifted weights for 20 years. I should have been doing it a long time ago. It really makes me feel a lot better.Ē

DO YOU DO MORE REPS BECAUSE YOU HAVE MORE TIME?

ďNo, I change it around a lot more, no. Iím doing basically the same workload as I was doing before but Iím shocking and surprising.Ē

ON LAST YEARíS DAYTONA 500

ďI donít replay it. I donít think about it much. I donít replay it in my mind. Thatís behind us. Iíll say again, Iíve said it a hundred times or a hundred thousand times Iím very proud of the effort that my team made last year. I also am very proud of the fact that I drove the race of my life last year. And so, thatís that.Ē

BUT YOU SAID NOTHING CHANGED AFTER COMING SO CLOSE. WOULD A WIN CHANGE WOULD IT CHANGE YOUR CAREER, CHANGE ANYTHING?

ďI went home after that race, after I got done with all that stuff. I went home, I took a shower and I did the same thing I do after every race. Now I have won a few races and I did the same thing that night as I did after the races I won or the races that I crashed - crash and burn. So, no I mean the only thing different was you could write Daytona 500 Champion Mark Martin and now you canít write anything but Mark Martin. You know what Iím saying ó you could, that would change because you would be able to say that well thatís how everything you write about me might read, but beyond that I mean, I donít know Iím not a look back and you know Iím very proud ó Iíll say again Iím very proud of the effort, very proud of the race I drove. I believe in my heart that I drove the race of my life and I donít know if Iíve got more than that in me or if I could ever do that, you know I donít know and Iím not worried about it.Ē

THEN THATíS A GREAT FEELING?

ďThatís a great feeling. Iím very proud of what we did last year. I wish we would have won, but winning that race wouldnít change who I am and it really wouldnít change my world that much. Just like winning the other races that I have won in my career really havenít changed things that much either. Iím proud of the oneís weíve won, Iím disappointed at all the ones that got away that we should have won but didnít and that Daytona 500 is not one of those that got away. Itís not one of those we should have won and didnít itís one we could have won and didnít.

http://autoracingsport.com/nascar/da...h-mark-martin/


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