Tuesday, July 15, 2008

The Little Lug Nut That Could

Lug nuts are the outcasts of equipment. They’re left behind for brooms to claim or discarded in buckets with all the others. They have little job security, too.

Lose a lug nut, however, especially when track position’s at stake, and pit road can come crumbling down in tenths of seconds.

During pit stops, one of five lug nuts can sometimes lose its way and fall off — to the rear, right, left, under the car or through the wheel. No sense trying to find it in this mess. That’s why there’s always a spare close by.

“We hope for the best, but are always prepared for the worst,” said Brian Dheel, the No. 84’s rear tire carrier.

Spare lug nuts are in all sorts of places on tire carriers and changers. On the helmet, just next to the jaw (above). Maybe on the top of the glove or belt. These unsightly, nicked-up chunks of metal look out of place, but they’ve earned the real estate.

When things go bad, the little guy comes through in the clutch.

“The worst thing that can happen is it falls off and you can’t find it. I’ve found that’s the quickest way for me to recover if a lug nut falls off,” said Aaron Schields, the No. 83’s front tire carrier. “You always have to be prepared for what you can’t control. I’ve been fortunate and haven’t had very many fall off.

“It’s all preparation, man.”


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lets just hope we don't have lug nut problams again like Brian did and lost the wheel!!!! (the people where the tire went didn't even get to keep it!)
The problams are over for the Red Bull Teams, we are ready to rock......we are going to have the running of the Bulls.
Can't wait to see one of them in Victory Lane soon.

6:55 PM  
Blogger Brian said...

Scott Speed looks to be getting ready for an '08 debut with help from BV:


12:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Congats to Kevin Hamlin for being named "Crew Chief of the Race" at Chicago. Wow! I think this is the second one for him this season! Way to go!
Am looking forward to someday hearing that Jimmy Elledge is named Crew Chief of the race. LET'S GO RED BULL RACING!

12:56 PM  
Anonymous Nick B said...

scott speed is gonna kick ass. BV already kicks ass.

12:11 AM  
Anonymous Tracy said...

Not really related to this blog, but does anybody know why AJ didn't get the U.S.G. “IMPROVING THE FINISH” AWARD? Riggs got it with an 18 spot improvement, but AJ was 26 spots. Do they not run the decal or whatever that makes them eligible?

Congrats to Kevin Hamlin on being the Crew Chief of the Race.

7:34 AM  
Anonymous Jason Lyman said...

Henderson: You have A.J. Allmendinger as your teammate. He’s a little older than you, but you are the veteran in the Sprint Cup Series. How do you work together, and how did his six-week absence earlier this year affect your team?

Brian Vickers attributes his team’s dramatic turnaround this season to the addition of Jay Frye as General Manager of Red Bull Racing.
Vickers: A.J. and I get along fine. I think my interpretation of communication and the relationship between teammates is different than his. I’d like to see the teams work together a little bit closer. I think coming from open-wheel, that background, those guys consider their teammates mortal enemies. They race their teammates even more so than they race everybody else. We have two different backgrounds and two different philosophies. When Mike Skinner came on board, I think it helped the whole organization. All the communication and experience he brought was a benefit and also, it helped bridge a lot of the gap between the No. 84 and the No. 83. Mike just has a lot of experience. A.J. is a talented driver, but the facts are that he has had little to no experience driving stock cars (before joining the team). That doesn’t mean that he’s not a talented race car driver, but Mike has a lot of experience. I think what he brought helped A.J. in a lot of ways. All in all, I think that was all the way around a positive.

I wish the 83 and 84 teams and AJ and Brian were more "freindly"---- I love em both, but truth is, I can see them both as cocky guys who don't feel they need the other... Open wheel guys are cut-throat to the core, AJ needs to realize that teamates are a good thing--- Brian, probaly could cut AJ some slack and try to make it more a team deal.... Maybe this is something they will work on in the future...

9:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unless you have come from open wheel you have no idea how cut throat it is. Your biggest competition is your team mate. Im sure the 83 and 84 side are getting along fine. With AJs new crew chief - who worked Kevin Hamlin before - there should be no problems. Its not just the drivers involved with working together.

9:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To answer Tracy's question, the reason AJ didn't get the "Improve The Finish" award is because the Red Bull cars don't carry the contingency logo that gives that award away, in this case it's the U.S.G. logo.

10:45 AM  
Blogger ncsuredbull said...

Does anyone know if the RBRT shop is open on Saturdays and what the hours are? I can't seem to find that info on previous posts, including the one that announced the opening of the shop. I was going to be passing through and thought I could get a look at it.

1:06 PM  
Blogger Brian said...

The shop is closed Saturday and Sunday. Here is the number to the shop to call for week day hours:

(704) 662-3566
(704) 660-8788

1:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Speaking of contingency stuff:

Does anyone know if the guys are eligible for the pole award? I read some where one time that you have to have some sticker on the car for that, but I can never tell if that sticker is on either car.


1:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, they carry the Coors Light Pole Award logo (#83's on the silver stripe, #84's under the stripe) so they're eligible for the Coors Light Shootout.

1:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks, Curt! I've looked at pictures of both of the cars and have never seen it on them. I guess it just blended in!


3:55 PM  

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