OFF SEASON AT A GLANCE, From Crossbows to Chassis
Do you ever wonder what a race team does between the last race of a season and the first race of the next? The answer is, there is no off season. As soon as the checkered flag flies from the last race, we are already thinking about and working on next season’s strategies. I am sure anyone in a sports-relating industry will claim they work tirelessly to improve performance year-round, but what exactly does that mean? Stick with me, as I walk you through a journey of the off season, race prep and the nitty-gritty of the Rev Racing pit crew team.
Each team in the racing business handles their “off season” quite differently. Whether it be building off of momentum from the previous season or starting over with fresh faces, the goal is to continue to find those sparks that ignite. This year, at Rev Racing, we get to do a little bit of both. We have one returning driver, Collin Cabre, that collected a win in his last race and a group of four very talented newcomers. These new drivers are from all over the country and world. Ruben Garcia Jr., the NASCAR Mexico Series Champion, comes from Mexico City, Mexico. Ali Kern comes from Fremont, Ohio. J.A. Junior Avila comes from Alhambra, California and Enrique Baca from Monterrey, Mexico. Accompanying these new drivers, we’ve also added some new crew and car chiefs, all with very versatile skill sets. Our program is unique; we must collaborate and strategize communication and processes with drivers from different driving series and different ethnic backgrounds. If we can’t communicate properly, we can’t put a car on the track. At the end of the day, we all love what we do, and speaking the same language of racing just comes naturally. I can honestly say, all of our drivers will be in very good hands this year.
“So, you guys just fix the dents from the last race, clean the cars and sweep the floors and you’re ready for next year, right?” If only that were the case. From the physical side of things, the first order of business this year was to clean up the mess in our shop that 17 grown men can create over the course of a season. Scary thought, I know. There also may or may not have been a few fireworks shot off, a 1990 big screen TV destroyed by the fork lift and a crossbow sighted in the process. We worked day-after-day to get tools and equipment organized and cleaned. The floors were polished, lists were made and walls were painted. All in an effort to make our race team not only function, but look better. Finally, our shop was ready for the the white glove evaluation.
Next, we do a little grocery shopping. I don’t mean food, even though I am pretty hungry. This process involves our inventory. We check to see what we need, and place orders for the season to come. We stock the shelves and talk with partners about new product launches and promotions.
Now, on to the most important thing, the cars. A makeover and a diet were in order for every car. Bodies were mounted, chassis were fixed, and new parts were installed (the guys at the shop however skipped out on the makeover and diet thing). As we loaded up to head to New Smyrna I can honestly say this is the most prepared we had ever been.
All of the efforts made during this off season were directed toward making sure we represent our sponsors, our fans, our owner and ourselves in the best and most competitive way possible. All that’s left is to go racing.
Post by the No. 2 Car Crew Chief, Matt Bucher
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