TRAVIS PASTRANA: STARTING ON A NEW NASCAR CAREER-ALTHOUGH HE CAN’T LET THE X GAMES GO JUST YET
Travis has lined up sponsors for at least 7 Nationwide races this year. Photo: Travispastrana.com
What is the news about your NASCAR schedule?
“We were looking to get 20 races in the Nationwide Series, but with the sponsorship?we’ve got it really good through K&N, Boost Mobile and Samsung?they’ve agreed to do seven rounds. We were going to try to do the best that we could with that seven rounds. I said, ‘You know what, we need to get out there and we need to get racing. So, let’s announce the schedule, let’s start in Richmond.’ We’ll hit seven rounds and still have the goal of hitting 20 races. Basically, just throwing it out there that we’re definitely in 100 percent.
What about freestyle?
We’re not doing any of the freestyle motocross or any of that stuff. This is where I want to be. With the help of Waltrip Racing?those guys are putting me in good cars and we’re ready to get out there and really try to do the best that we can in this sport. We’re starting at Richmond and we’re trying to go through as much as we can after that.”
Travis still wants to race Rallycross at the X Games. Photo: Travispastrana.com
Were you disappointed not to race in the Nationwide Series last year?
“Last year, definitely shot myself in the foot for sure and had a lot of sponsors and a lot of people relying on me to show up. Unfortunately, I shattered my ankle and my foot at the X Games. I will still be going back to the X Games for Rally Cross.
Travis at the 2012 Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona. Photo: Travispastrana.com
Who would you like to thank?
Definitely big thanks to the Michael Waltrip Racing guys and everyone that’s trying to guide me in the best direction possible. This is going to be a lot of fun and I’m looking forward to spending a lot of time with the guys. Even on a side note?we’re pretty much done with all the other stuff as far as the shenanigans with Freestyle and everything. Last year we did a filming for a movie that’s going to come out in theatres mid-summer. The Nitro Circus and Michael Waltrip Racing guys actually helped me with building a bus that we jumped with seven people and ended up going almost 200 feet in a bus over a huge gorge. They made it safe and made it fun so I would like to thank the guys for getting that bus to safely fly that gap. Hopefully, we’ll be able to showcase NASCAR is that movie as well. We will be able to showcase NASCAR in that movie because we’ve already filmed it and with the help of these guys, it’s been a lot of fun.”
Why did you pick these races to run?
“The reason that we’ve chosen the races we have is just to get as much diversity as we possibly can. I’m definitely looking forward to running a road course?trying to get the funding to at least do a K&N West as well. Trying to get on as many different tracks as possible. Of course, tracks like Darlington is something that I’ve looked forward to running for a very long period of time. Indianapolis?ast year I thought it was going to be a lot of fun because it was more of a flatter, shorter track, which I can slide a ca? I’ve been doing that my whole life. I just have to figure out how to not slide a car now and we’ll see how that works out. Just trying to get as much diversity as we can in the races that we’re guaranteed to do. Have great sponsorship lined up for the start, but I said, ‘Let’s try to pick the best tracks we can, let’s do the best that we can with what we’ve got guaranteed and let’s keep looking.’ I want to be racing every single weekend. If we get 20 races or 25 races, that’s what I need to get seat time.”
How has NASCAR been so far?
It’s been really a fun deal to learn a lot more about the sport. Motocross, when I got into it was all I would eat, breathe and sleep. Then, I went to Rally cars and that was all you did for literally seven years?that was the focus. Coming over here, there’s a lot of history that I need to learn. I actually did the rookie seminar and they showed a whole video on basically how NASCAR got started. It makes you smile and makes you really want to get out there and try to represent these guys the best you can.
Travis as we know and love him. Photo: Travispastrana.com
How difficult is the transition from action sports to NASCAR?
“No matter what you drive or what you ride, no matter what you’ve been successful in the past? if you switch sports you’re starting not from square one. You understand the balance, you understand the dedication and you understand what it takes to get to the top of a sport. It’s still unique. Motocross was all about aggression on two wheels. Rally cars was listening to the co-driver and having to understand that and very aggressive with all-wheel drive. Now there is a lot of roll speed. It’s completely different?not to say it’s a waiting game, but you’re trying to be right on that edge without going over that edge which is something that’s completely different.