CORNELIUS, N.C. — Crew Chief Mike Greci knows the key to Travis Pastrana’s success in the No. 99 Boost Mobile Toyota in Sunday’s NASCAR Nationwide race at Chicagoland Speedway will be all about one thing—tires.
Greci, who normally serves as Pastrana’s crew chief in the K&N Pro Series East, will guide the 11-time X Games gold medal winner for RAB Racing this weekend.
The K&N Series, where Pastrana owns 11 starts and Greci four championships, competes with Goodyear’s bias ply tires while the Nationwide cars run on Goodyear’s radial tires. Greci said Pastrana needs to adapt to the Nationwide radial tire as well as he has to the K&N’s bias ply tire.
Mike Greci on Chicagoland: “Goodyear’s radial and bias ply tires are fantastic tires, but they feel tremendously different to the driver. Travis has a lot of talent. He’s been successful in the East cars because the bias ply tires are more forgiving. He can manhandle them and drive the wheels off of them and still run fast laps. The Nationwide radial tires are totally different. The more you manhandle a radial tire the slower you go. Travis needs to find the balance between the two different tires. I really think once he can get a chance to drive a Nationwide car on a consistent basis he will learn the tire and start having better results.”
Travis Pastrana on Chicagoland: “I am hoping for a better outing this weekend. I did learn a lot last weekend, but it was still disappointing. I still have a lot to learn about the Nationwide tires. I tend to over drive the radial tire and get myself in trouble. But with each race I run I think I am getting better. The K&N bias ply tires seem to fit my driving style a little better. I can drive the K&N cars like I do my rally car. When you do that in a Nationwide car you go really slow. It’s a learning process which we knew would take some time. Our goal this weekend is the same as it has been all year—finish every lap.”
MEET PASTRANA: Pastrana will make two Boost Mobile store appearances this weekend in the Chicago area:
Friday 12 p.m.- 1 p.m. CT at 1229 W. 37th Street, Hobart, Ind. 46342
Saturday 5 p.m.- 6 p.m. CT at 1725 Plainfield Rd, Crest Hill, Ill. 60435
MEET PASTRANA PART 2: Pastrana will visit the Boost Mobile Experience in the Chicagoland FanZone on Sunday at 12:30 p.m. CT.
NATIONWIDE STATS: In five career Nationwide Series starts, Pastrana owns a career-best finish of 17th at Darlington Speedway. His best career start of 15th came at Iowa.
K&N SERIES: In 11 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East/West starts, the Maryland native owns one top-five and three top-10 finishes. He grabbed a career-best finish of fourth on May 19th at Iowa Speedway in the K&N Pro Series East race.
LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION: Pastrana’s Nitro Circus The Movie 3-D will be released August 10. The movie has plenty of NASCAR references. Pastrana199 Racing prepared the school bus that jumped more than 150 feet in the opening scenes.